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  • #16
    Let’s plug in and crank up. POD fans will recognize much of the Floor POD, starting with the Direct/Amp A.I.R. switch. Amp mode is intended for when you’re plugging the POD into an amp, whereas Direct is for recording or going direct into a mixer or PA. It’s not like Amp removes the cabinet; there is still the “vibe” of different amps, even with Amp engaged. Direct sounds more like it emulates the high frequency rolloff of a typical speaker cabinet, as well as gives some of the “air” that comes from miking an amp.

    I decided to use Direct, as I wanted to feed into a host sequencer so I could record some audio clips. The volume seemed a little low for recording at first, but there’s a master volume trimpot on the back panel which can take the output pretty much anywhere – from low enough to feed a guitar amp, to high enough to drive a line-level computer interface. Good.

    The manual seems intimidating until you realize it’s one of those multi-language deals, and really, there are only nine pages you need to read (there are also a couple pages of boilerplate to keep lawyers and the government happy, but I sincerely doubt you were going to play with your Floor POD in a bathtub during a lightning storm anyway…right?).

    Even if you never read manuals, c’mon, it’s only nine pages, it’s written in a friendly style, and the type isn’t even small – so read it. There are some hidden features that aren’t intuitively obvious unless you do. For example, there’s a section on how to calibrate the footpedal. It’s simple to do, but you’re not going to know how to do this, let alone that you even need to, unless you read the manual.
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    • #17
      There are 12 models, but click on the attachment to see the amp model selector knob. It appears that there are only six positions, but this isn't a switch; it's a continuously variable control. As you turn the knob and go through each position (Clean, Class A, Classic, Hi Gain, Treadplate, and Insane), the LED associated with each model illuminates - first red, then green. Each represents a significant variation on the main sound.

      For example, the "red" Class A recalls the sound of a Vox AC 30, whereas the "green" Class A is more of a boutique sound based on a Budda Twinmaster head. Another example: The "red" Insane option is the original Line 6 super-overdriven sound, whereas the "green" version is inspired by the Soldano X88R.

      Because I read the manual , I noticed that Presets 61-64 are blank presets, which are ideal for creating sounds from scratch. I figure that's probably the best way to hear each model by itself, so excuse me for a bit while I do some recording.
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      • #18
        Here's the deal on these examples: I recorded them straight, with the default preset, and varied only the amp model. There was no other processing. I played to a drum loop, which I kept in the mix to give a sense of context. All of the amp tracks were normalized, and I tried to play each example as consistently as possible so you could make valid comparisons -- although I changed my playing a tiny bit for some of the models if it seemed to fit the model better.

        These were all recorded in Sonar, the brought into Wavelab and batch processed to MP3. I added about 1.5dB of limiting so that the clips could make it through the MP3 data compression a little more intact. Each clip is saved in mono for two reasons: I could use 64kbps and have the same quality as 128kbps in stereo but twice the sample length (each example is about 12 seconds long), and the amp models are inherently mono; the reason the Floor POD has stereo outputs is for the stereo effects.

        I suggest that after downloading these you bring them into a digital audio editor or multitrack host so you can compare them easily. Also, please note: If the download has a .PHP extension, change it to .MP3 so your player (iTunes, Windows Media Player, etc.) can recognize it.
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        • #19
          Clean Green model.
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          • #20
            Class A Red.
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            • #21
              Class A Green.
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              • #22
                Classic Red.
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                • #23
                  Classic Green.
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                  • #24
                    Hi Gain Red.
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                    • #25
                      Hi Gain Green.
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                      • #26
                        Threadplate Red.
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                        • #27
                          Threadplate Green.
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                          • #28
                            Insane Red.
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                            • #29
                              Insane Green.
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                              • #30
                                I was pleasantly surprised at just how good the models sound "naked." In fact, I prefer that sound to some of the highly processed presets. I should also add that the character of each amp model changes dramatically if you vary the amount of drive, or use a different pickup position. So even though there are "only" 12 models, you can can get a lot of mileage out of them...listen, and judge for yourself!

                                Next, we'll get into the user interface a bit, effects, and much more.
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