I have a Digitech RP350. POD even worth it?

Discussion in 'Digital & Modeling Gear' started by armanHammer, Mar 29, 2013.

  1. armanHammer

    armanHammer Member

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    The 350 is ok. Two or three decent amp models and effects, meh delay and reverb, but that's about it. I also hate how there's a cringeworthy silent gap when switching presets. I don't want to waste my money again. I want an investment, not a toy: something that I will use for life. So, people who have tried both: would a POD even be worth it (desktop, floor, or otherwise) or should I just cave and go for an Eleven Rack, Fractal or Kemper? I've been playing for ten years now, and I want something that will serve me well in all situations: live, recording, late night practice with headphones. I have a '57 RI Strat which I love, and an Ampeg Reverberocket, but it's gigantic and only does clean tones well (albeit very well.) I want a toolshed, not a one-trick pony (even the RP350 is pretty much one-trick.) I also have a Gibson 1x8 GA5. But overall, I'm attracted to the idea of one device that does everything well. I'm sure some of you have owned all of these. I've heard the PODs are great, but I'd essentially be wasting my money if I would need something better later on anyway. Your thoughts? Thanks!
     
  2. tonesurf

    tonesurf Senior Member

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    "something that I will use for life"
    check you assumptions I say as that may never happen, the GAS never dies, and digital gear can fail and in some cases be unrepairable for the most part

    11R is great but not really developed anymore, seems to be end of life for that, look for a good deal if you want one
    GT100 from Boss is amazing, Zoom stuff is amazing, Line 6 HD stuff is amazing, Kemper and Axe amazing too,

    you got to try some stuff out, RP350 aint bad for sure but the new stuff is much more flexible in terms of setting what you want here and there

    RP350 Lexicon reverbs are pretty good by the way

    try some stuff out, you can always return stuff too, there is no easy answer and technology is moving quick quick, and don't just go on price alone, there are economies of scale at work and smart people working at all the effects houses
     
  3. otter5555

    otter5555 Member

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  4. gulliver

    gulliver Supporting Member

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    I had the RP1000, really didn't bond with it but don't think it's terrible. Now I have the Vox Tonelab LE. They're about $150 used and are way less flexible than the RP, but have about four really really really good models. JCM800 is very close to my real one with very good touch. Sadano is for decent high gain but I don't have one top compare and there are some decent lower gain stuff. There's a cult following for these but again, not super flexible.
     
  5. Maltese Fan

    Maltese Fan Member

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    I have a GSP 1101, with the Beta firmware and IR's it sounds pretty dang good.
     
  6. armanHammer

    armanHammer Member

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    So, in your opinion, is the 350 better than any of the Line6 stuff?

    Pretty impressive videos. Maybe it's because I'm my own worst critic, but that tone is significantly better than anything I've gotten out of the 350, even with a Butler Tube Driver going into it. I have heard that modelers tend to do better with humbuckers, so that could be it. I do get a disgusting "digital noise" with my Strat (Texas Specials) into the unit. Maybe I need to upgrade firmware? I think I did so once. Also, the guy doesn't say if there was any post processing...

    BTW, could be my heavy EJ influence, but my favorite settings:

    (Note: I had to mess with the EQ, presence and all, A LOT to get decent sounds) '65 Twin with matching cab, some Echoplex, and either Lexicon room or studio 'verb. '68 Plexi with Vintage 30's with gain on 100 for dirty, with the Tube Driver on Eric's Settings. Maybe some TC chorus on either. Honestly, pretty much every other amp model sucked. All drives pretty much unusable. Phaser is ok, all other FX meh. Wah is horrid.

    I remember reading somewhere on this forum that running a good, clean boost pedal into a modeler can help a lot. Can anyone elaborate?
     
  7. Pietro

    Pietro 2-Voice Guitar Junkie and All-Around Awesome Guy

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    The Digitech stuff isnt bad, but imho, no way does it touch the HD 500. That said, I wouldn't even bother with the HD 300 or 400. Too limited.

    But you can get a great sound out of an HD 500. GREAT sound...
     
  8. gulliver

    gulliver Supporting Member

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    This quote from the OP is interesting to me. These modelers change every year, current ones become cheaper and new ones have more features and hopefully better tone. With vintage stuff, certainly investments hold true, but be careful of technology ... you'll get burned 6 months out of the gate every time. :cool:

    ... If you buy and sell used stuff as your interest and needs grow, you're probably better off.
     
  9. Just A Box

    Just A Box Member

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    A few FACTS you should consider regarding modelers:

    There is no lifetime device. You wouldn't buy a laptop with belief that it will serve you well for the rest of your life. After two years (at most), you will compare your laptop to the current crop of next-gen devices and feel like you're missing out on the newest features or capabilities. Likewise, modeling technology is improving at a wonderfully fast pace, and the most convincing tones to be had today may seem sterile 5 years from now when the Axe 5 or the HD 500-3D comes out. The Line 6 fanboys and the Fractal crowd will attest to this truth more than anybody.

    Tones (as you have attested to) are highly subjective, and watching the wrong Youtube video could (pro or con) sway your decision for one device over another. I'm sure there's a mixture of feeling for some guys, as some are strictly buying with their ears, wile others (knowingly or not) feel they are either getting equal tones for less money (HD500, 11R), and can't justify spending four times as much for the same tones, or are getting the best tones by buying the top priced units that are aimed more at pro-level musicians than the pro/everyman player. If I had several grand to spare, I'd try an Axe 2, but I don't. Personally, it's overkill for what I do.

    In the end, buy the best thing you can afford that sounds best to your ears, fits your musical situation best, and makes you want want to play more. But, do it with the knowledge that you will periodically have to step up to keep up.

    My opinion, of course.
     
  10. SnowfaLL

    SnowfaLL Member

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    I had a RP250 and its a MASSIVE jump going to the Pod HD series. Not even close in comparison. RP / GSP sounds "ok", good at its time, but the HD Series blows it away IMO.

    If you want a cheap alternative, the best pro-sounding unit for a good price is without a doubt the HD500. Maybe Im one of the few but I would take it everyday over the 11R also (I dont care for Marshall tones though, seems the 11R is made for that)
     
  11. Bobby Wasabi

    Bobby Wasabi Member

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    I've owned an RP10 for 15 years. I hadn't pulled it out in a while. I rented an HD500 to try out. To be honest, I wasn't that impressed. Sure, it has more drive types than the RP10, and the ability to customize the signal chain, but in the end it is still a lot of tweaking to make some usable patches. Pulled out the RP10 and it was not blown away by the HD500. My advice is to rent one and try it out before you commit to buying one.
     
  12. Jarick

    Jarick Supporting Member

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    I had an RP355 for a while...nice effects but didn't love the direct tones. Haven't had a POD since the XT days.

    I personally think modelers are short-life devices and haven't reached a point of having them for a lifetime, although they are getting closer. To have a "lifetime device", I'd want to see the following:

    1. Impulse cabinet emulation, which sounds immensely more realistic. This has been possible and around in real-time with low latency for a few years and I think the Kemper and Axe units do this, as do some plugins.

    2. Hardware and software capable of being updated and loaded with new models, either more accurate or more varied. Again, I think Kemper does this, and the reason you want this is more for lifetime purposes. I think of the PS3 and Xbox 360...they will have close to a decade of hardware platform with software on top of it that gets refined and pushed to the boundaries. If you're investing $2k in a device, it shouldn't be obsolete in a few years.

    3. Sound reproduction aside from headphones, aka powered monitor or speaker cab. I think this is one of the hardest aspects and why amps like the Line 6 Vetta and DT series and the Fender Mustangs are so popular. It's one thing to get a great sound with headphones...another thing entirely to sound good in the room at band levels or on stage. You either need the FRFR powered speaker than has flat 20-20k and sounds like a miked up amp playing through a stereo, or a Power Engine type unit that sounds like a flat guitar amp and can be miked up.

    That's my rambling thoughts...I think we're really close, and maybe those high end units can do it all, or will with a bit more refinement.

    But I think for your question, the POD would probably fall short. You'll probably want to go Axe or Kemper for hardware or else try a variety of software (I'm using S-Gear and really like it, but it's incomplete and would require additional plugs to nail a variety of tones). Or invest in pedals that you like and run into a piece of software that has impulse cabinet emulation, kind of the best of both worlds.
     
  13. jrockbridge

    jrockbridge Member

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    I've tried a Zoom G3. I used to own a POD HD500. I've tried a GSP1101. I still own an RP250 and an 11R. I used to own a PODxt Live. I've tried an Axe FX II. I used to own a POD 1.0 and 2.0.

    IMO Axe FX II > 11R > POD HD500 > GSP1101 > G3 > RP250 > XT Live > POD 2.0 > 1.0

    I don't think the HD500 and GSP1101 w/c63 firmware are too far apart in terms of amp/cab/mic modeling. I prefer the modulation fx in the 1101 better than the HD500. Also, I find many of the fx in the G3 to be more impressive than the HD500 and 1101. My rankings are based primarily on the amp modeling.

    Bottom line, I think you will like the POD HD500 better than the RP350. The HD generally feels and sounds a bit closer to the real thing. I found the process of tweaking the HD frustrating at times. I don't think the UI is very intuitive unless you use the computer software. I spent too much time arriving at my patches with the HD but once I got a good sounding patch, the resulting sound was very good.
     
  14. Steven7

    Steven7 Member

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    Your RP 350 is DNA 1 processor the RP 155 on up are DNA 2 and the GSP is a double processor. These newer ones by Digitech may not have that delay problem in switching.
    Playing an RP into a tube amp may not get you as a sound as through a good SS amp would.
    I have an RP 500 , I'm a dirt player so it's OK for me and may not be for other type of players who require various classic amp emulation.
    I've had no luck so far getting good earphone quality with the RP 500.

    One piece of gear you might look into is specifically the Pod HD desk top. This seems to be a way different beast than the predecessor Bean Pods.

    I'm a bit of a cyberdunce and not good at tweaking, I know how to use a toaster. If I had tweaking skills I'd probably pick up a used HD 500 but life is short.
    Seems there are short comings in many of these gizmos.
    11 Rack good but lacks in the effects
    Digitech good in effects but not as good as others in Amp simulation.
    Axe FX , the the king of the hill but pricey.
    If possible try as many as you can and bring your headphones with you so you know how that aspect will sound like.
     
  15. mattball826

    mattball826 Member

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    gear i own preference for emulated amp sound.

    kpa>axefx>gsp1101 w c63/ownhamme irs>gnx4 w mfx packs>pod hd500>tonelab le>rp1000>pod x3l>utopia>gt10>gnx3000>pod xt live>jstation>vamp pro> pod xt.

    i still own others but wont add them to the list since they are variants of similar generation modelers.

    for retail software:

    sgear>overloud th2>amplitube 3>guitar rig
     
  16. armanHammer

    armanHammer Member

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    Thanks for all the replies. This thread has reminded me that the GAS will NEVER die... even if I owned everything, there's always something new coming out. Also, this is important: my most creative, productive time was living in another country, in a small room, with nothing but my acoustic guitar. Too many DISTRACTIONS in our world! I know this is The Gear Page, but the gear isn't worth anything if nobody can play it. I look back at all the hours wasted reading a Musician's Friend catalog, on the internet, this site, etc. Just play... just play well, and people will GIVE YOU gear for free.
     
  17. otter5555

    otter5555 Member

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    +1

    tweaking the hds can be mind numbing. almost anything out there is easier, faster and more intuitive.

    the hd can be MADE to sound great but it requires work.

    many others can sound great with far less effort.

    if feel is what you're looking far, the hd's DO feel great and are worth the effort.

    i simply want to sound great and play. an amp or modeler is simply a tool for me. feel and model accuracy are not the holy grail for me.

    almost any modeler made in the last several years can be made to sound great.

    it all depends on what YOU want in a modeler :)

    otter
     
  18. Gigbag

    Gigbag Member

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    I hear this a lot, but have no problem slecting an amp from scratch and getting great tones in a couple of minutes. I think you have to play with it enough to know what amps sound best for your style and guitar/pickups, etc. -- by using your ears. I don't necessarily start with a model and try to replicate things based on the amp that was modelled. There are a number of amps that can be set up for various uses (clean to dirty), some of them you would not expect based on the model.
     
  19. jrockbridge

    jrockbridge Member

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    Incorrect!

    The RP70, RP90, RP150, RP155, RP250, RP255, RP350, RP355, RP500 and RP1000 all use the same Audio DNA2 processor. You can look on page 1 of the RP350 instruction manual if you want confirmation. http://www.digitech.com/system/documents/56/original/RP350_Manual18-0436V-A.pdf

    I recall reading somewhere that the 1101 has a dual DNA2 processor for faster patch switching. Perhaps, somebody else can very this as fact.

    I've also read that because the c63 firmware allows loading custom IR's, this is the main factor that separates the 1101 (in terms of sound) from those other Digitech units.
     
  20. Chris Martins

    Chris Martins Member

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    Well I think the consensus is : yes. The HD500 sounds and feels much better than a RP355.
     

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