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Old February 2nd, 2012, 08:37 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Line 6 vs Roland Cube

I've been out of the electric game for a few years. Sold my 66 Princeton and Classic Player 50s Strat a few years ago and have been strictly acoustic since.

But, I've gotten the itch to try pedal steel and I've got a work bonus coming next month that I'm going to buy one with and give it a shot. Pedal steel guitars aren't like 6 strings where I could spend a couple of bills and have an instrument more than capable of learning on. Those suckers are expensive. So for now, I'm going to scale back the amp budget and spend most of my dough on the instrument. But I'm also going to get another electric guitar, so I'll be using the amp for both.

I know steels need a lot of headroom but I won't be playing anywhere but at home, so volume not's an issue. I was thinking of going with the Cube 60 or 80. I've read nothing but good about them. I've got a buddy that played a Line 6 of some kind, I don't know what it was and he says it sounds better than the Roland.

I like a nice clean, twangy vintage style sound. That's what I go for in guitar and I like the old school Ralph Mooney sound on steel. I love a tube amp, but for now, I'm going to not spend as much as I'd like and get what I'd love, but instead get something that's OK , but maybe just not at the top of my all time wish list.

Would the Cube 60 or 80 be fine for something like that? Is there a Line 6 that would be good for that use? I just don't think I want to drop much more than $300 on the amp. Any suggestions?

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Old February 3rd, 2012, 08:54 AM   #2 (permalink)
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I can't comment on pedal steel use, but I've been using a Roland Cube 60 professionally for ages and, especially for clean sounds, it is absolutely excellent. To date it has also been totally reliable.

I've used Line 6 amps on a few occasions on jams and in rehearsal studios. My own personal experience is that either I couldn't get a decent sound out of them or they broke down in use. In more than one instance, both situations occurred. Others may have a different view but I myself would strenuously seek to avoid Line 6 amplifiers at all costs.

Of course, Peavey amps are often associated with pedal steel and you might well be able to acquire a used one of those, a Nashville or Session perhaps, or for home use maybe just a good ol' Bandit/Special, for well within your $300 budget.
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Old February 3rd, 2012, 09:10 AM   #3 (permalink)
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I can't speak for all Line 6 or Roland for that matter, and haven't tried a pedal steel; however I had the Line 6 Spider III-75 and hated it. There are 400 preset models to choose from (and you can make your own too) and I couldn't find a tone I liked to save my life. Construction is also on the cheap side IMO. I have a Roland Cube 60 and love it - just the opposite of the Spider III - most of the models agree quite good, and I can always and easily dial up a tone I like. In addition - it's well built and very portable. As I understand it the Flextone line of Line 6 is suppose to be much better than the Spider.
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Old February 20th, 2012, 04:33 PM   #4 (permalink)
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My experience of gigging with Line 6 is using a POD, either through a Roland KC350 keyboard amp (120 watts) or straight into a PA. In both cases, I couldn't get the sound to "cut through" at gigging volume. A mate of mine had a Flextone amp and had the same problem. Admittedly these were early generations but its made me wary.
I also own a Cube 60 and no such problem with that, it's a very loud, toneful amp in a very portable package. No "deep editing" to worry about either. Based on my experience, I'd say Cube all the way.
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Old February 20th, 2012, 05:15 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I use my roland cube 60 for my (amateurish) pedal steel tinkerings and find it works out fine. Its got enough headroom for low volume gigs even with the volume pedal rocked back.. I even used my micro cube in this clip to record myself..

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P_417...1&feature=plcp
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Old February 20th, 2012, 05:36 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Nice to see you're into the haunted knitting machine, Steve! I've always loved the sound but never got into learning how to play the thing.
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Old February 20th, 2012, 05:37 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I love it Tony but it may take a lifetime.. and playing for crowds in this country Im generally just asked why I brought my ironing board.
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Old February 20th, 2012, 06:08 PM   #8 (permalink)
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...and playing for crowds in this country Im generally just asked why I brought my ironing board.
Tell 'em you've got a pressing engagement!
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Old February 20th, 2012, 06:17 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I'm a big Cube fan.
They are so easy to "dial up" a great sound on.
They record beautifully, either miked or direct.
I have hipped dozens of guys to them.
The Line 6 stuff is "fiddly" and hard to use live.
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Old February 20th, 2012, 07:08 PM   #10 (permalink)
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I have a Cube20X.

I was put off the Line6 by the shop telling me they had a lot of Line6 returns with faults when we couldn't get either of the Line6 on the floor to work properly.

I gather the usual suspect for pedal steel is a Peavey Nashville 112
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Old February 20th, 2012, 08:14 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Cube 80XL

I have owned a MicroCube for several years, actually I gave it to my son who still uses it regularly.
I just purchased a Cube80XL , so far I'm very impressed with it.
Plenty of power, easy to use and it sounds good, that's the most important thing.
It's the first SS amp that I have purchased new in over 25 years, I still LOVE tube amps but for my gigging needs the Cube 80XL will work just fine it is small , fairly lightweight, loud, did I mention loud? and versatile , good onboard effects too.

No real experience with the Line 6 amps or PODs etc...

I've read a lot of good reviews on the older Cube 60 too, they seem to be real reliable amps.
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Old February 20th, 2012, 08:26 PM   #12 (permalink)
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I have a Line6 FlextoneIII Plus and extension cab which I pickup up for very little(probably as a result of them not being too popular). I've been happy with it when I have used it, but most of the time I use a Behringer V-Amp Pro direct into the PA.
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Old February 20th, 2012, 08:26 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Another vote for the Roland Cube....or any midsize to large Peavey amp will get you plenty of clean.
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Old February 21st, 2012, 12:50 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by beexter View Post
My experience of gigging with Line 6 is using a POD, either through a Roland KC350 keyboard amp (120 watts) or straight into a PA. In both cases, I couldn't get the sound to "cut through" at gigging volume. A mate of mine had a Flextone amp and had the same problem. Admittedly these were early generations but its made me wary.
I also own a Cube 60 and no such problem with that, it's a very loud, toneful amp in a very portable package. No "deep editing" to worry about either. Based on my experience, I'd say Cube all the way.
+1

I've always had the same problem with Line 6 not cutting through. It would sound great by itself, but it would disappear as soon as you played with a band.

On the other hand, I just purchased a Cube 80XL and I have been pleasantly surprised.
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Old February 21st, 2012, 09:20 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Same here, I don't have my POD anymore, I've never been able to find a tone that would please me, wanted to stay away from modeling, until I tried a Cube and now own one, as you can use it like a traditional amp and quickly get a good sound with it, clean, break-up, overdriven, good dynamics. It's the amp I'm using the most. No waste of time, plug and play.
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Old February 21st, 2012, 10:27 AM   #16 (permalink)
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Line 6 vs Roland Cube

Add me to the list for the Cube. Not tried the Line 6 amps. My Micro Cube and Cube 20X are easy to dial in, simple to use, and sound pretty good to my ears. I get good results from both a Strat and a Les Paul. If you don't like dialing and editing endlessly, and spend more time on you playing, I'd go with the Cube.
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Old February 21st, 2012, 10:54 AM   #17 (permalink)
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interesting this thread has new life. Originally posted on Feb 3 with 2 responses. The OP disappeared and it sat dormant 'til yesterday.
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Old February 21st, 2012, 11:55 AM   #18 (permalink)
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I would offer a comment on the Line 6 owners who can't get their amp to cut through a mix.

I have mixed FOH in a lot of environments, I find that many Line 6 owners tweak and model until they get that killer tone....when they are playing by themselves. Almost invariably they don't have the midrange energy to cut through a mix. It is pretty easy to fix at the amp, but it involves them giving up the scooped mids and hint of lush chorus/delay that makes it sound so fat when played solo. It is harder to fix at the console, but not impossible.

I don't mean to imply that it is a Line 6 issue, it is an issue with how they are dialed in. I own a couple of pieces of Line 6, they aren't my favorites, although a POD can make a decent headphone amp.
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Old February 21st, 2012, 12:52 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Almost invariably they don't have the midrange energy to cut through a mix...
Actually, this is a significant issue and can apply to any amp. I discovered long ago that an amp that sounds rich and full at home can be useless on a gig where the bottom end is swallowed up in the bass frequencies and in ambient crowd noise while the shimmery top end is lost among the cymbals.

It's the midrange frequencies that make you audible. The trick is to identify a gap in the sound spectrum and set your amp up to aim at that. In this way a modest amount of power can go a long way. Sometimes instead of a bigger amp I use a Cube 20X, which doesn't have a lot of bass energy or, surprisingly, high top end either. But it does poke out a nice midrange bark which makes it unexpectedly competent for live use, unmiked, in some moderate-volume circumstances.
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Old February 21st, 2012, 01:24 PM   #20 (permalink)
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I am head over heels impressed with my Cube 80XL every time I play it. Especially for clean tones (with pedals for overdrive), the tones are just plain good, and it's so nice to have so much full, rock-solid, tight bass on tap for a change.
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