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Pillimees

Line 6 ToneCore Crunchtone Overdrive Pedal



Sound Quality

My current setup looks like this: Tanglewood Quomaster -> Rocktron Tri-Wah -> Line6 Constrictor -> Line6 Crunchtone -> ProCo Turbo Rat At home I play through a H&K Edition Blue 15R amp, and in rehearsals and gigs through various Marshall, Laney and Fender amps. Yeah, I'm a poor student, so I can't afford high-end amps yet. The sound quality is pretty good. You can get a wide range of different sounds out of this pedal. It can get a bit noisy, but the built-in noise gate takes care of that. The noise might also be due to the generic wall-wart adapter I'm using. I'm in the process of building a dedicated regulated power supply for my pedals, which should hopefully eliminate some noise. I've mostly used the pedal on the Crunch setting, but since I recently got the Turbo Rat for my primary drive pedal I suppose I'll be making use of the Pop and Blues settings more often. The pedal isn't true bypass so it sucks some tone when switched off.

Reliability/Durability

The pedal is, for all practical purposes, indestructible. I've had it for about 20 months, it's been through at least three dozen gigs and I've stomped (hell, even jumped) on it countless times, and it's still going strong. The output jack has come a bit loose, but that's only a minor nag in an otherwise tough package. Even the flimsy-looking plastic knobs have managed to stay intact. I have used it without backup, and will happily continue to do so.

General Comments

I play different styles, from folk-rock to lo-fi indie to blues, and this pedal has seen me through all of those. If it got stolen I'd seriously consider getting a new one, though it might prove a little difficult since the Line6 pedals seem to be few and far between here in Estonia.

 

When buying it, I compared it to several Rocktron and Boss pedals, most of which had "zombie", "death" or something to that effect in their names. I chose the Crunchtone because it offered the most variety of sounds, and because I didn't need a high-gain pedal anyway. Since then I have found myself occasionally wishing it had more gain, which is why I recently purchased the Turbo Rat. But the Crunchtone has certainly earned itself a place in my pedal chain.

 

My favourite feature would have to be the noise gate, since it allows me to skip a dedicated noise filter. The selectable models are also neat, and I expect to explore their possibilities more in the future.

 

One point of concern is powering this pedal. As mentioned, it chews through batteries like there's no tomorrow. I measured its power consumption, and got 45 mA in bypass mode and 60 mA when disengaged. This is obscenely high for an overdrive pedal, and means that you'll probably need to bring at least one spare battery to gigs. The Line6 ToneCore pedals also seem to not like being daisy-chained with other pedals, though I haven't tried it myself. The best option, if you have more than two or three pedals, would probably be to get a power supply like the Voodoo Labs Pedal Power.

 

Overall this is one extremely versatile overdrive pedal.




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