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Line 6 M9 vs analogue pedals

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by Axe-Man, May 23, 2011.

  1. Axe-Man

    Axe-Man Member

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    Melbourne, Australia
    I'm building myself a decent small(ish) pedalboard and I'm stuck deciding over whether I go M9 or spend potentially more money and get some quality pedals if they will do the job 'better' than the M9.

    I currently have: Carl Martin Plexitone, Wobo relay looper, Suhr Riot and Shiba, Creation Audio Labs Holy Fire and Mk 4.23 Boost on a Pedal Train Jnr which I'm about to upgrade to a PT2.

    I don't need any drive models or boosts etc and would pretty much use the M9 for gate, tuner, reverb, tremelo and maybe delay/chorus/flanger etc on rare occasions...so these last few FX aren't really needing to be considered but it is a bonus with the M9.

    If I get an Empress Trem or a Red Witch Pentavocal and a TC Hall of Fame rev, will I notice the difference over the M9?

    Is a TC Poly tuner or Pitch Black 'better'?

    I own a HD500 and it has a decent spring reverb, op trem, gate and tuner so the M9 should be just as good.

    Overall, will the 'real' pedals sound noticably better and are they worth spending alot more money on for way fewer FX?

    If there is any tonesuck going on with the M9, I will throw it through its own loop (Wobo) and I can then easily exclude it with a click...so if 'tone suck' occurs, it can be managed...as long as it's not terrible! (I find the HD500 pretty good as far as transparency goes when it's setup correctly - had major issues early on though)

    Ultimately, 4 analogue pedals will cost me more than the M9 costs for 100FX but it may just be worth it.

    Anyone else been in this situation?
     
  2. weshunter

    weshunter Supporting Member

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    M9 has true bypass so there shouldn't be tone suck

    i think the M9 would be just right for your needs - as long as you aren't counting on the drives, i think you'll be really happy with it
     
  3. RockDC

    RockDC Member

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    I had the same issue 6 months ago... Besides Drive I use high quality: Delay, Tremolo, Phaser, Wah, Tuner. I decided to take a leap and do the M9 to save space on my board. Drives SUCK!!! Delay is decent, Tremolo is lacking some, Chorus is good, Phaser is lacking, Wah's are difficult to tweak.

    That is my brutal opinion but... I don't use mod that much. All those effects are definitely useable and in a live scenario hardly noticeable. So with that, I'd say its worth the risk to pick one up used and play with it... there is a large learning curve and you will need to spend the time tweaking. I also found it reacts very differently depending on the guitar.
     
  4. drbob1

    drbob1 Silver Supporting Member

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    I'm debating getting another one for my church board. Right now I've got decent quality stuff on there but I'm finding I don't have a convenient way to go from dotted 8th delays, to straight quarters except to add a 3rd delay (one for solos/effects and one for ambience), at which point it would have been less expensive to just go with the M9. I found most of the mod stuff to be pretty good, delays and reverbs were fine. Drives were awful (got lost as soon as I kicked them on, lost in the mix). Filters and wahs were pretty tough to get a sound like a simple crybaby.
     
  5. DigitalHater

    DigitalHater Member

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    I've never found the modeling pedals to be comparable against analog single pedals. If all you want is an all in one, with a whole bunch of "pretty good" options, I think it would work great.
    I am of the opinion that I would rather be limited in options, but have pedals that give me 1 GREAT sound versus a bunch of workable sounds. Line 6 has come a long way, I keep finding myself debating the DL4, but when I come home from the store and use my actual analog DM2, there's no comparison. My pedal doesn't have tap tempo, delay times don't go nearly as long, no presets, yadda yadda. It sounds freaking perfect at what it does though.
    -If I was going on tour, I'd probably do the switch, these things are way less important in a live context, but in the studio, at my house, I just want it to sound the way I want it.
     
  6. goodgodsey

    goodgodsey Supporting Member

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    Location:
    Eaton, Colorado
    I had an M13, and I was very surprised by the quality of the drive models. However, when I A/B'd the M13 vs. my reverb pedal (Neunaber WET) and my delay pedals (Boss DD-20, DMM) I noticed a substantial difference. The M13 just wasn't as rich and lively as the other pedals. I found it noteworthy that this applied to the comparison between the M13 and my DD-20, which is also digital. The DD-20 just sounded better, fuller, richer, and crisper.

    The M-series pedals are great, but I ultimately concluded that they aren't as good as the real thing. They'll get you maybe 80-90% there. And for me, I decided that the extra 10-20% was enough to justify buying the real things.

    I do miss the looper though...as well as the flexibility of being able to call up ANY effect I can dream of...
     
  7. Theroyalconsort

    Theroyalconsort Member

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    London
    Hey look this is a simple one.

    The M9 is alot of toys for not much money.

    Of course the real pedals will sound better. BUT the flexability of any multi effects is vertually impossible to match with individual pedals.

    You need to ask yourself one question.

    What do I want.
    50 additional damned good sounds or
    5 increadible ones.

    Both are pefectly reasonable answers depending on what you are doing.
     
  8. rsm

    rsm Member

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    I faced a similar decision awhile back.

    I had a Nova System, got the M9 (used for 9 months) and went back to the Nova System. I was digging the Nova System enough that I considered building a board with the Nova pedals (long before the Tone Print pedals were rumored) to get the full features of the Nova Series not included in the Nova System. I already owned / used a Nova Drive as my main OD/Dist.

    By the time I added the cost of a complete Nova series pedal board (without including the cost of a custom looper / pedal board controller, just the Nova pedals), it was close to, if not higher than, the G-System.

    I got the G-System.

    Very happy with my Nova System and G-System.

    YMMV
     
  9. guitarboogie

    guitarboogie Member

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    Dec 4, 2008
    It seems that you have a pretty good arsenal of pedals right there. I think you (if you can) buy the M9 for the chorus and delay, maybe phasing, if you use it. I have a Line 6 POD xt Live and what I do is connect it to the return of my Laney GHL 50 head fx return and use the amp modeling for distortion. In terms of distortion (excuse the redundancy), I don't like the drive modeling of Line 6, so I use the amp modeling distortion (Marshall, Soldano) and then program the chorus and delays. For drive, I use an analog pedal like a boost or TS9. It is a good setup for gigs on the fly.

    I'm rebuilding my old analog pedalboard, for those gigs that have an amp on site.
     
  10. Axe-Man

    Axe-Man Member

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    That is exactly where I am at present.

    The main things I want are gate, tuner, reverb and trem.

    I'm guessing a gate is not quite a gate but one advantage is that you can change scenes on the M9 and have it setup for clean, mid gain and high gain where with a stomp gate, you have to tweak it for your crazy high gain antics after using it for cleans etc.

    A tuner is a tuner...if it works it works.

    So it's really down to how much better the Trem and Rev sound. Mostly trem in fact. If a Empress or Red Witch completely destroy the M series for trem, I will investigate as I'd love a truely awesome trem...makes it easier to justify the quality reverb unit as well.
     
  11. TheReverendCommon

    TheReverendCommon Member

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    In the corner of your Reverb Tank
    THIS.

    seems like it would suit your needs on a practical level.
     
  12. Bucksears

    Bucksears Silver Supporting Member

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    I A/B'd the trem and reverb of my SRRI against the 'Opto-Trem' and '63 Spring' settings on my M9 when I had it and the Line 6 had it pretty much nailed.

    IMO, I'd get the M5 just for those and use individual pedals for everything else.
     
  13. whiteop

    whiteop Senior Member

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    ^:agree having owned the M9 and the HD500 plus a lot of boutique analog pedals the analog pedals just sound better and more organic, particularly the drive pedals though the Screamer isn't bad at all. If you are looking to save a lot of space on your pedalboard the M9 will do a descent job of taking the place of a lot of pedals though.
     
  14. tonegangster

    tonegangster Silver Supporting Member

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    It all depends on the application. If you are in a church band where no one cares about your tone then the M9 will work just fine. Its also fun to play with at home and can make you practice and play things you never have. BUT, If you want the best tone, go for the pedals.
     
  15. Catoogie

    Catoogie Senior Member

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    I had an M9 and for the things I wanted it for (tremolo, reverb, vibrato.... basically non-drive effects) I felt it lacked something single pedals had. The vibrato was nowhere near as good as my Malekko. The trems weren't as good as my cheapo Danelectro Tuna Melts etc... I sent the M9 back. However, it may work for you.
     
  16. Evansexcellent

    Evansexcellent Member

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    I have an m9 and a bunch of pedals and think they both get the job done. I think as far as a live setting I like the m9 w/ a few other pedals... having presets is awesome and you dont have to worry about changing knobs. Plus the audience can't tell. The only thing I don't like about the m9 is the od/dist. If you can get both.
     
  17. SyKrash

    SyKrash Member

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    Los Angeles
    I sold my analog pedals for the M9. Been on my board ever since.

    The thread's outlined pretty much everything in the pedal, the drives are poor, but everything else is pretty good and will get you 90-95% of the way there.

    I would still rely on a different tuner though, the tuner on the board is very very hard to see.
     
  18. fusionid

    fusionid Member

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    I just bought one. So far my impression of it is that the it is ok.

    I'll give it a couple of days but might have to flip if not gain
     
  19. TheGuacamoleXplosion

    TheGuacamoleXplosion Member

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    While I'm not such a fan of the '63 Spring model (I prefer the real thing from my BF Princeton clone with long reverb tank), I agree about the M5. If you don't need the looper on the M9, go with the M5 and use the additional real estate and saved money for an additional analog box. You might think about adding a Disaster Area switcher (DMC-2 or the announced Itty Bitty: http://disasterareaamps.com/wordpress/uncategorized/dmc-itty-bitty-prototype) for preset switching.

    Here's a video I made with my M5 plus expression pedal that shows some of the potential of that combination:

     
  20. Matticus

    Matticus Member

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    Houston
    My opinion on the drives might be slowly changing. A friend recently wanted to borrow mine, so I spent an hour or two setting mine up with some sounds I thought he might like. To do that, I A/B'ed some of the stuff on my main board (BB Preamp, Plexitone, RV5, Flashback). I was pretty surprised at how close I got. I'll post the settings whenever I get the M9 back. He's said he's almost nailed his typical OCD setting. We both feel like the delays need more work than the drives, which is surprising.

    And the looper is very nice for on-the-fly A/B comparisons (in addition to what it already does well). Play a riff on your normal setup, give space to A/B: bam. This lets you hear things quickly, since you can now record on top of that with the M9 models.
     

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