REVIEW: Line 6 POD HD300

The Line 6 POD is as much a classic line as the Gibson Les Paul or the Fender Stratocaster – the original was groundbreaking on its own, while various adaptations and refinements over the years have kept each in line with the expectations of modern musicians. PODs have been heard on thousands of recordings concert stages, from the original red bean-shaped desktop model to later floor-based units and POD Farm software. The HD series takes the POD sounds and philosophy we know and love, and rebuilds them from the ground up with even higher sound quality.

As it arrives in the box, the HD300 includes 16 amp models. However, a few days before the unit arrived for review, Line 6 announced an expansive downloadable firmware upgrade including six new amps and access to five new amp parameters: Sag, Hum, Bias, Bias Excursion and Master Volume. These additional parameters give you the ability to really fine-tune the character of the amp’s response, especially in terms of note attack and overall warmth, and they add a whole new layer of realism. For instance, the ‘hum’ parameter lets you actually select between 50 and 60 cycle hum (depending on whether you’re modelling the experience of playing in the USA or Australia – seriously!), and vary the amount of that hum, from zero to “oh dear, that’s quite a bit of hum” and any point in between.

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