Line 6 M13: toolbox or bag of tricks?
December 15, 2008 10:13 AM   Subscribe

Any experiences or thoughts about the Line 6 M13 multi-effect stompbox modeler, or similar multi-effect pedals?

Yet Another Guitar Effects Question: I am a non-gigging, play-for-my-own-amusement guitarist. Once every 8 weeks or so I get together and jam with a group of friends (including MeFi's own doctor_negative). The jamming is very unstructured: sometimes we capture lightning in a bottle, and sometimes we wallow in our musical ruts. We always have a good time either way.

About 10 years ago I made a decision to go lean with my effects gear, and paired down my noisy collection of mediocre stompboxes to a single digital delay and a Fender reissue analog spring reverb. I recently picked up a DigiTech SynthWah for cheap and have had a lot of fun playing with it, which has made me re-examine my feelings on effects and stompboxes -- it seems like they've come a long way while my head was buried in the sand, lol. Looking at what's out there, I'd like to play around with some effects again.

I've done a little research, and the big multi-effect pedal boards have fallen to a price point I can stomach. I'm particularly intrigued by the Line 6 M13, which does all I am looking for and about 75+ other things as well. (FWIW, if I got this I'd add one or two of their expression pedals to make it complete.) I've read many of the reviews on Harmony Central, but I'd love to get some opinions from some MeFi musicians: do you like this pedal board, or a similar jack-of-all-trades conglomeration? Is it good device on its own terms, for what it attempts to do? Also, besides this particular device, what other devices by other manufacturers should I try out? I don't want to go all the way to the guitar synth realm, and this device seems to stop short of that, which I like. I am not a professional, so ease of use means a lot to me in this context, and the overall user experience is among my most important considerations.
posted by mosk to Media & Arts (4 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
My experience with these things is that somehow I am less loud and the effects aren't that great. Plus you can get caught fiddlin' with the knobs while the others are ramping up the magic.
posted by Ironmouth at 10:43 AM on December 15, 2008

I've used a Boss GT8 for a couple of years, and been very satisfied with it. Either a used GT8 or a new GT10 look to be in your price range.

The real draw of the multi effect unit is its compactness for the range of sounds it can give you. On the GT8, none of the sounds would be leaders in their class independently, but, rolled all together in a nifty little package, the mere convenience of the experience adds value.

So I'd recommend you try a GT8 or 10.
posted by baltimoretim at 10:55 AM on December 15, 2008

Have you checked out the Zoom G2? It's got 9 FX modules that can be chained together, and 40 different programs (which can be edited and saved). It's made of metal, not plastic. It's much smaller than the Line 6 unit you're looking at, and much cheaper (~$95). It comes with an AC adapter, but can also run on AA batteries.

I'm a huge fan. But FYI, I'm not a guitarist -- I use it to process vocals and synths.
posted by Artifice_Eternity at 2:03 PM on December 15, 2008

Best answer: Resolution: I decided to get a Line 6 M13. I have been playing with it for a few weeks and am very happy with it so far. For my needs, I have found many of the effects to be fine -- especially the delay and reverb effects, which are truly outstanding. Thanks for the other suggestions.
posted by mosk at 11:24 AM on January 15, 2009

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