Line 6 M5

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by Pep, Nov 20, 2016.

  1. Pep

    Pep Supporting Member

    Oct 5, 2010
    Louisville, KY
    I'm just curious if any of you are using a Line 6 M5, M9 or M13 for their bass effects? I just purchased the M5 and I'm fairly impressed with it so far.
    If someone has been programming one I'd like to find out what programs/patches you've come up with. I spent about 2 hours today going through and and was able to produce 3 that I like and can use.
    I need one more , an envelope filter that comes close to either the BassBalls or the new MXR.

  2. JonnyAngle

    JonnyAngle Dropping Acid Pedal Etching .com Supporting Member Commercial User

    Nov 24, 2008
    Maple Grove, MN
    The reverbs and delays are top.

    The pitch shifter is one of the best.

    It's extremely underrated.

    I've liked the tron up and down for filters.
  3. Crystalman85


    Nov 30, 2008
    Chicago, Il.
    I haven't tried one out personally, but someone on youtube has demoed this multi-effects processor on bass. I dig the distortion and modulation effects. if I own one, I would also purchase a blender pedal to go with it so that way I get a killer sound without obliterating lows.
  4. I really really like it!

    My favourite effect is the bass octave. Mean sounding octave for sure!

    The mods, delays and verbs are great too
  5. Pep

    Pep Supporting Member

    Oct 5, 2010
    Louisville, KY
    You may not need a blender pedal. The adjustments on the M5 allow you adjust the mix between dry and colored and most of the effects have an adjustment to add more bass or treble. And of course you can save whatever to create or modify.
    If you're thinking of something else, please explain.

    Also, I spent part of my day yesterday looking on youtube for a demo of bass sounds and didn't find one. If you know of a link to it, please let me know and thanks for your input!
  6. Pep

    Pep Supporting Member

    Oct 5, 2010
    Louisville, KY
    I agree on the bass octave. I tweeked it a bit to make it sound a bit more blended with a little more edge.
  7. Adamixoye

    Adamixoye A PT Pro is cool for worship, right?

    Apr 9, 2012
    Occasional Beta Tester for Confusion Studios, Singular Sound, and Source Audio
    The reverbs and modulation are quite good.

    The distortions sound okay-to-good in a vacuum, but IME they do lose a lot of low end and you can't just dial is back in with the EQ. Maybe they are fine on guitar.

    The pitchshifter isn't bad but there are better (it held its own but came in third in this thread that I did: Pitchshifting---a blind shootout for your perusal).

    Overall it's a very solid Swiss Army Knife.
    BrentSimons likes this.
  8. adamaarts


    Apr 19, 2001
    Corona, CA
    Beta tester Source Audio, demos/reviews of many others
    I've had the M5 and the M9 I've bought and sold twice. Awesome pedal, definitely a Swiss Army knife.

    I used the octaver a lot. It tracks extremely well even on super low notes. It sounds decent, nothing like an OC2 but a great addition regardless.

    I also used a lot of reverbs and delays. I punched these in via MIDI when I wanted a volume swell ambient kind of sound.

    plus the synth sounds are fun to play with. Sometimes can be picky on tracking bit for the most part it's better than a lot of 'synth' pedals out there.

    Here's a older board rundown when I had the second M9, it wasn't as fine tuned as my first one as I had just bought it right before making the video, but it gives you an idea of some basic sounds.

    Jonny_Orange and Daniel Piper like this.
  9. Crystalman85


    Nov 30, 2008
    Chicago, Il.
    Really?...I thought the m5 and the m9 didn't have such a feature. okay so I guess I don't really need a blender pedal to go with the line 6 m5 or the m9.

    As for the youtube clip, I try to find it, but I guess it's not there anymore. that's a shame. they were pretty cool demos and I did like how the distortion and modulation effects sounded. personally I would go with the m9 to have more variety in effects.
  10. Hi there,
    Can you dial the low end back in with the eq on the M9 or M13? or is it inherent in the series not just a limitation of the M5?( 1 effect at a time)
    Thank you,
  11. Adamixoye

    Adamixoye A PT Pro is cool for worship, right?

    Apr 9, 2012
    Occasional Beta Tester for Confusion Studios, Singular Sound, and Source Audio
    Not sure, I used to own the M5 but not anymore. Never owned the M9 or M13.
  12. Pep

    Pep Supporting Member

    Oct 5, 2010
    Louisville, KY
    The effects are the same in M5, M9 & M13 . The main difference is that you have better access to everything with M9 & M13 plus you can use more that one effect at a time.
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2016
    Crystalman85 likes this.
  13. Pep

    Pep Supporting Member

    Oct 5, 2010
    Louisville, KY
    Thanks! I'll check it out.
    adamaarts likes this.
  14. I have recently started using the M9 on my board. Initially, I was after the M5 because of it's price, but after doing some research the M9 seems to be the best for my needs out of the M-series. M13 is huge and overpriced, considering you can get a Pod HD for the same amount of money, M5 is just way to limited and preset switching is a trick to do live. So I got a used M9 to play around.

    I have used it on my board for around 2 months, here is what I think:
    • You will find a lot of comments and reviews on this forum. The general consensus is that modulation effects, as well as time-based effects are awesome. I will second that. I have built several presets with modulation: phaser, flanger, chorus, vibrato - they all sound great. Compared to some analog boxes I have tried, it seems like the M9 effects are not as "wet" or deep as some analog effects, but offer much more flexibility and a mix control (most of them, but not all). I don't use too many delays/reverbs, but they do sound good.
    • Pitch-based effects are great, the bass octaver is second to none. I have used the OC-2 for years and while the M9 octave is of different flavor (although, this can be tuned with the tone control), it tracks well, sounds massive live. I like it a lot and use it. The pitch shifter is great, I use the octave up setting on it - love it.
    • In contrast to what others were saying, I like and do use the filters on the M9. I have read a lot of reviews where people bashed them, but I find them very usable. In fact, I have sold my SA BEF, because I it was overkill for me. BEF sounded great, but I don't think the M9 is too far off, at least the way I have it set. It may be a little tame, it doesn't have a sensitivity control, but the way I play these filters, they do a great job for me. A also have an EHX Enigma and to me the filter setting (Q tron Up) on the M9 tonewise is very similar to the Qtron family, especially the Micro Qtron I tried in the store a year ago.
    • I also like the EQ's, the boost comp and the tube comp on this unit. I mainly use them as boost pedals. And here is why I think M9 is better than M5: a lot of modulation effects will mess with your volume, especially set with high depth. This is an issue with many analog pedals as well. The problem is, that the M-series don't have a volume setting for your patch; in fact, only overdrives, comps and parametric EQ have a gain/volume control. So what happens is when you activate your phaser, your volume goes down. Alternatively, with the Qtron on the low setting, the volume gets boosted (just like the original analog unit). On the M5 there is no way to fix this, you will need another pedal. However, on the M9 I use a second or third effect (you can have up to 3 simultaneously) to fix this. For example, by phaser patch is Analog Phaser - Parametric EQ. This way I can tune it frequency-wise the way I want and also boost the volume a little to compensate. With the filter, I have a Qtron Up - Volume pedal, turn down the volume on the second effect, done!
    • The latch mode is godsend for live use. Again, most of my patches have 2 or three effects to get the result I want (this is a usual thing with digital multifx units). I can hit it with one switch, instead of hitting 2 or three. For example, I have a patch with octave-filter-chorus - all activated with one click. I have two folders set up, 6 patches each - one is for fingerstyle playing (octave, filters, vibrato, boost), one is for pick - phaser, flanger, chorus, delay. Works great, I just switch between folders during a gig.
    Now the cons:
    • Overdrives, distortions on the M9 do not work for bass (boost comp is the only exception, but it's not an overdrive really). You could probably use them with a blender pedal, but in stock mode they don't work. You can't really EQ the low end back, because the EQ will only go down to 80HZ and it seems like the EQ points are more tuned for a guitar. You can try, but I haven't succeded. The only one I like is the Sub Fuzz and you can use it as a sub, again with a second pedal boosting it, but I haven't used it live yet.
    • The switches are really close to each other. If you press 2 top ones, you get into the set up mode or tuner mode. I have done this during a gig multiple times, I have also accidently activated the looper. The tuner is the worst, since I have mine set to mute and I have had those 'where-did-my-sound-go' moments. If you have a Midi-switching unit, this will probably solve the problem.
    • It's heavy and it needs its own power supply, which is also heavy. This may or may not be a factor for you. I know people power them with Voodoo Lab supplies or similar, but I use the stock one.
    I will say this: I got it second hand for $250 with the exp pedal. So for about $200 you get a great octave, good modulation, great delay/reverbs - I think this is totally worth it. And there are ways to get very creative with this pedal, I am just not there yet :) Oh, and you can map your expression pedal to different settings on different effects to get crazy stuff out of this box. And the interface is really good and simple to use, unlike the SA pedal that I had (of course, this one didn't have a screen).

    I am glad if this helps :)
    Mili, Driven Crane and godblender like this.
  15. AndyLES


    Aug 25, 2008
    New York
    But wouldn't the inherent latency from the digital circuit cause serious phase cancellation on the low end?
  16. ga_edwards


    Sep 8, 2000
    UK, Essex
    I had an M5 for a little while after watching Adamaarts muse demo. It nails the TIRO synth sound. Other than that, I only used it for modulation effects (chorus/phaser) and the bass octave fuzz.

    I sold it as I was constantly fighting it's inherent volume issues. The modelling of some effects is too accurate IMO. The chorus pedal Line 6 used as the model is known for having a volume boost, so does their model. Likewise, the synth model I bought it for hasn't got a volume parameter as was far too quiet.
  17. Adamixoye

    Adamixoye A PT Pro is cool for worship, right?

    Apr 9, 2012
    Occasional Beta Tester for Confusion Studios, Singular Sound, and Source Audio
    I definitely agree about the ODs and distortions as I already said above, at least for the M5. I had a sound at home that I thought was pretty good, then I tried it live and it just disappeared.

    On the volume issue that you and ga_edwards mention, there are the JHV3 mods that maybe would be useful, although they are expensive.
    Daniel Piper likes this.
  18. Yeah, those mods add up real quick!
  19. I'm going to try wrecking modding my M5 myself — what could possibly go wrong?

    - replace stomp switches with Carlings (swap out the LEDs for another colour as well)
    - Add preset dedicated-scene stompswitch
    - Mount expression knob on pedal combined with a feedback loop;
    use a switch to toggle between stock and mod (the mod is said to cut the expression jack's abilities by half)
    - Tap tempo out (control other pedals from my M5) Requires other pedals to have TRS input and NO (normally open) tap tempo control such as Strymon Timeline, etc.
    - Master volume

    And maybe with the help of my Amp Guru friend I can upgrade the audio path as well, though I've heard both yays and nays for this. Some surmise it's golden others swear it's fool's gold.

    M5 doesn't have the looper. Had I known that, I might've sprung for the M9. Then again, the M9 is BIG. Trade-offs...
  20. Crystalman85


    Nov 30, 2008
    Chicago, Il.
    If I were to purchase one of the line 6 m-series of processors, I go with the m9 to have more variety in effects. plus I would purchase a blender pedal to go with that to get a killer sound without obliterating lows.