Choosing Pod HD over Axe-FX or Kemper

Discussion in 'Digital & Modeling Gear' started by mikah912, Mar 31, 2015.

  1. mikah912

    mikah912 Member

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    http://geargods.net/interviews/in-the-axe-fx-vs-kemper-debate-twelve-foot-ninja-chooses-line-6/

    So the article at that link focuses on ONE guitarist talking about choosing Line 6 over Axe-FX and why (in detail, no less). But at the bottom of the article there's an embed of a new Line 6 video interviewing a lot of major modern metal guitarists about how they use Pod HD and XT (ostensibly, it's to promote the new Metal add-on pack for the HD series).

    The most interesting thing to me, however, was the profiled guitarist breaking down his reasoning and experience with the Axe-FX that made him scurry back to the Pod HD500 (to be fair, he uses Variaxes extensively, but that has little to do with what he states in the article).

    I already came to a similar conclusion in that I've found "my sound" before ever touching any of the "big boys". I have no need to chase beyond the wealth of awesome modeling amps (for the rare live gig I have to do) and software VSTs (for all my studio work) out there right now. I'm curious to see what everyone else thinks.
     
  2. C-4

    C-4 Member

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    I was just reading the user manual for the Axe-FX and the midi board companion from Fractal.
    My head was swimming! I don't understand how so many players understand how to use that thing! WOW!
     
  3. Mr. Brady

    Mr. Brady Member

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    I predict: :mob


    For the record, metal tones are not nearly as dynamic and don't need to have the on the edge of break up zone that the Axe and Kemper do best. I could see a metal guitarist being perfectly happy with a POD HD. A blues, rock, country, or jazz guitarist? Maybe not so much.

    I own an HD500 by the way and have owned an Axe FX Standard back in the day.
     
  4. Megatron

    Megatron Member

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    I have an AXE II and recently picked up the MFC 101 III.
    I use it at home and for practicing and recording. Will be taking it to a pro studio for some work in a few weeks.

    Lately I've been using it direct for some P/W gigs on sunday and it shines. But I still think I'm going to pick up a used HD500. Where I play we do a quick practice and then play during the 2nd and 3rd service. Set up times are minimal at best. And I'd like to get all my gear in one trip. Might consider the Amplifire as well.

    As far as programimg.....they have an editor that makes it way simpler than from the display.
     
  5. Scott Peterson

    Scott Peterson Staff Member

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    Nothing wrong with choosing a tool box that works for you and utilizing the tools inside to fit your application and need. No matter what name is on the outside of the box.
     
  6. paulvcarter

    paulvcarter Member

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    AXE FX is extremely easy to use - the presets are awesome, you can drag and drop block (effects) in and out to find your sound.

    Building a tone is also easy, drag in an amp, (has same dials as real amp in the basic window) then a cabinet......etc....

    Unless you have played one using F18 it's hard to imagine how awesome this gear is.
     
  7. aleclee

    aleclee TGP Tech Wrangler Staff Member

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    Some folks use a chainsaw, others a Dremel tool, some others a chisel. If it's the tool that enables you to get the results you like, it's the right tool for the job.
     
  8. mikah912

    mikah912 Member

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    Before you write off "metal tones" as undynamic and undemanding. I suggest you list to Stevic's band, Twelve Foot Ninja. They blend a lot of outside genres like samba, jazz, and funk into their music, and they use the acoustic models of the Variax quite often. Guys needs a lot of varied, dynamic tones for every gig.
     
  9. db9091

    db9091 Member

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    C-4, any manual can have the head swimming. The AXE's have a very easy to figure out interface. If you're used to other rack gear, it's down right intuitive. I think their units have been getting mythically bad PR on that count.

    That said, its ALL about what works for you and the audience if that's your bag. For me, the PODs were a great part of my sound journey and I went back to amps. After going Fractal ULTRA and Kemper, I wouldn't go back to amps unless I just had a lot of money, room, and was in the mood to collect vintage for investment reasons.

    Sound-wise, I can't imagine beating what I have, so my journey has found it's plateau. And that's how to judge, when you've found that plateau.

    Put another way, these things are tools to solving a problem. If you have NO problem to begin with, you don't need new tools to solve them!
     
  10. Gasp100

    Gasp100 Silver Supporting Member

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    I have a JTV Variax incoming and I will most likely end up with an HD500(X) for the integration of being able to switch patches/guitars. This is assuming I like the Variax enough to keep it and I cannot get enough versatility out of the Variax direct into the AxeFX II.
    IF I go this route it's entirely possible I'll dig the HD enough to rehearse with it (at the least) and might even gig with it at my primary project gigs. In the second project I'll be playing with 2 other guitarists and at least one of them has the II, so of course I'll need to match up ;)
     
  11. ejecta

    ejecta Supporting Member

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    I don't think you are familiar with the band he plays for. He by no means uses just a "metal tone". Great freakin band BTW.

    He changes tones many times in this first video.





     
  12. ChrisVereb

    ChrisVereb Member

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    ....so 10 posts and nobody mentions the fact that "seahorse dick soup" is actually a thing! I eat in Cleveland's Asia Town all the time and I've never noticed it....gotta read the menu a little closer next time.

    And as for current metal guys using POD's like Meshugga, isn't that same thing as all the classic rock cover bands out there using Marshall variations? People tend to like the gear influenced by the gear used by the musicians that influenced them. Not a hard and fast rule, but it's sensible that it happens.
     
  13. standard24

    standard24 Member

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    I got my HD 500 at a pawn shop for $85. Sort of settled the Pod-vs-Axe-vs-Kemper for me....

    If anyone wants to trade with me, I'd be OK with that.
     
  14. ltkojak

    ltkojak Member

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    You don't really need to invest more than the price of a second-hand V-Amp 2 to play Modern Metal.

    The money is much better invested in facial make-up and new tattoos. And some quality time with the instrument to perfect those parallel fourths riffs played on the downtuned strings doesn't hurt either! ;)

    J/K... ;)
     
  15. fgevans

    fgevans Member

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    so the guy is a product trainer for line6 and he prefers Line6 to the axe fx - wow thats news
     
  16. atquinn

    atquinn Supporting Member

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    Great advertisement for the Variax-HD500 combo. He's obviously making the technology work for him.
    -
    Austin
     
  17. Pat Healy

    Pat Healy Member

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    Lincoln Brewster has been getting fabulous low and medium gain tones out of the Pods for many years. Granted, he's Lincoln Brewster, and I sure as hell can't get those out of a Pod. But they're in there if you know what you're doing.
     
  18. olejason

    olejason Supporting Member

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    I'm pretty much in the same boat. I have a 5150 and a nice cab for playing live. But for recording I've never heard the Axe or Kemper produce a recorded tone that I couldn't get with software. At this point I don't believe any hardware modeler (including the POD) provides a clear sonic advantage.

    I think for a lot of people the Axe and/or Kemper workflow and user experience is just better. A lot of people just don't like doing everything on the computer screen. They like buttons and knobs and that is fine. The problem is when people start lying to themselves about what sounds best because they need to justify their monetary investment. :p
     
  19. PBGas

    PBGas Supporting Member

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    I've come from a couple of Kemper units over the years. They are great, very convenient and record very well but at the end of the day, I found myself always using no more than three main tones that I liked for my live work. It was a convenient solution. I wasn't using FRFR on the stage as I wasn't happy with what I tried so I used a cab which was great but kind of made all of the tones sound the same...especially the heavier patches, due to the speakers in it (V30). That wasn't necessarily a bad thing. The direct to house sounds were very good.

    That being said, I have found some great tones out of the Bias desktop pro coupled with Wos-III. As well, the new recabinet stuff is amazing for the heavier patches. Going to try the UAD Friedman and Engl stuff as well shortly. I have an amp head that I've always wanted which sounds fabulous and a Torpedo live for recording at home and playing live as needed. Easy and very nice solution for me.
     
  20. habanaerosmith

    habanaerosmith Member

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    Beat me to it.

    The other--and related--thing is that sometimes there are diminishing returns with greater flexibility.

    For some people, too many options can be overwhelming and lead to 'paralysis through analysis' syndrome.

    Not that the HD500 is a simple or even straightforward device, mind you. Because it assuredly is not.

    But from what I can tell, and admittedly I've never used one, the Axe in particular is orders of magnitude more complex than the HD500.

    And man is that saying something...lol
     

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