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PODs are taking over

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by South Town, Jun 5, 2004.

  1. Hey y'all,

    Here is my ponderence:

    A few days ago, I was playing with one of those Bass PODxt's and I saw a floorboard I could use with it. My little Hartke just isn't enough for most gigs and I want a new rig. My guitarists tell me that it would be just fine (but what do they know about bass?....) but my better side (guess who that is..) wanted me to post my problem. I am on the verge of buying a new rig, but I liked the sounds and options that the PODxt can offer. I would use it 99% for live situations. It sounded good in the store, but is it just as good as another rig would be on stage??? PLEASE HELP!!!

    :help: :help: :bassist:
  2. rolling like that Saturday afternoon bump
  3. modflea


    Apr 26, 2004
    Lafayette, LA
    I bought the Bass POD when it first came out and I used it live for a long time. I can say from experience that it makes an axcellent live rig. When I first got it I went direct because we were using in ear monitors. I was also using it at church through a floor monitor. Then I used it live through my speakers by plugging it directly into my power amp. Just get a power amp to push your speakers and you're ready to go!
  4. Got one positive, any other thoughts???
  5. I've got a Pod Pro that I've had for about 2 yrs now. I've jumped back and forth between using it and forgetting it. The sounds are great, but none of them sound as good as the sound from my F1-X or SVP-Pro. (those are stand alone pre-amps that just have one basic sound each). Right now I'm only playing out once in a while and I'm back to using the POD Pro. I don't think they are bad by any stretch of things. I just don't think they are for everyone.
  6. Melvin7822

    Melvin7822 Supporting Member

    May 11, 2004
    Broomfield, CO
    I can honestly answer this question for you being that I've been on both sides of the spectrum. To be brutally honest the Bass PODxt Pro is better suited for recording than for a live rig.

    You'll notice that your only positive reply mentioned using in-ears and running it through the PA. I would most likely agree with the guy that it sounded good, only because he eliminated bass cabinets from the chain of things. And believe me, you're not always going to have the greatest of PAs wherever you go. The live mode is just too weakly voiced for bass cabinets. I was using a BBE 482i Sonic Maximizer to make up for everything it lacked. In all honesty nothing can beat the sound of a good tube pre and some great pedals (which is the route I currently chose and have never looked back).

    However, if you feel you desperately need to have a Bass PODxt Pro, here's my advice to you. Find a bass cabinet with a flat response (I used Acmes, however I'd doubt you want to go through the struggle with making sure they receive adequate power). I believe they voiced the live mode with an Eden 4x10 in mind, because I seem to remember them claiming an Eden 4x10 to be their fullrange reference (which interestingly enough isn't all that flat).

    I would highly recommend a BBE 482i Sonic Maximizer. But do not run it through the effects loop. Run it after the POD. I would not recommend running anything through the effects loop because it just sucks the tone dry and makes it boxy.

    Don't use the parametric EQ to shape any sounds you create. Save it to compensate for room acoustics. Also because of this, keep your basic sounds down to a minimum, preferrably four. You don't want to have to EQ a ton of them wherever you go. When I took it out I had three tones, a clean tone, a slap tone, and an overdriven tone. All based on the same amp model mind you. I'd check out the room acoustics with the clean tone adjust the parametric accordingly, and then use that information to adjust the other two.

    If you must use the distortions, turn down the tone to cut the raspiness out and then mix in the DI signal to fill out the tone with some bottom and presence. I'd highly recommend creating separate patches for your distorted sounds (think of it like channels on an amp head).

    For the modulations and delays never run the effect completely wet. You lose too much tone if you run it completely wet.

    The wah is totally useless, I'd forget about that in a second. The Mu-tron simulation is also equally worthless.

    Another useful note would be to forget using cabinet simulation. This especially important if you have any traditional bass cabinet with a non flat frequency response curve. Cabinet simulation should only be used when recording or going straight to the PA.

    The basic rule of thumb is when using it as a preamp, use it only as a preamp and not to ameliorate your gear or to make it sound like gear you don't have. Work with what you have, not against what you have.

    But all in all, the Bass PODxt Pro will most likely aid you in figuring out what you really want. While the Bass PODxt Pro is nice in its flexibility and variety of sounds, consider how much you'd actually need. It ends up to be overkill. Remember, nothing beats a good tube pre, cabinets that you love, pedals that help you express yourself not make the sound, and of course a good bass.
  7. Ericman197


    Feb 23, 2004
    What I don't understand is why everyone says the POD is great for recording. From what I'm hearing, it's almost as good as the models it emulates... so why not use the real thing in the studio and the POD live? It seems like a lot of you guys recommend doing it the other way around, which doesn't really make sense to me.
  8. jobu3

    jobu3 Artist formerly known as Big Joe

    Feb 17, 2002
    Mountain Top, PA
    Through their direct out either to a PA or recording console they are basically uncolored and unaffected. Most bass cabs as you know, are more colored than full-range PA and certainly more so than a studio mixer. With this added coloration, PODs sound more artificial and less believeable. Personally, I don't care for them... :meh:
  9. Melvin7822

    Melvin7822 Supporting Member

    May 11, 2004
    Broomfield, CO
    I don't recommend them for recording, I just simply stated that that's what they're better suited for.
  10. Thank all of you so much for advice. I think my only choice is to actually find one to borrow. We have a PA to our band that will fit most gigs, so that issue is not a problem. The problem is that with so many options in the bass world, it can get very overwhelming. Most places carry only a few brands and leave little room for other stuff. Being a college guy, I can't afford to spend one to two grand (or more) on a rig that I'll end up finding something much better later. I guess I have now found the paradox of the music industry. I wish we could go back to P-Basses and a Bassman.

  11. Melvin7822

    Melvin7822 Supporting Member

    May 11, 2004
    Broomfield, CO
    Nick like I said, if anything the Bass PODxt Pro will probably help you figure out what it is that you want. It helped me out. Good luck.
  12. Nick,

    Consider pickiing a POD Pro bass unit on Ebay and save some cash. After owing both the Bass and Guitar Pods I agree with the Guy who said You'll figure out what you really want. The More things an amp can do the the worse it generally is. Find an amp with one sound but does it well. To my ears the Marshall Superbass model on the POD is the only sound that's decent.

    Barry :p
  13. geoffzilla


    Oct 30, 2001
    Nashville, TN
    Endorsing Artist: Aguilar Amplification
    Nothing's stopping you from diong just that! Realistically, modern needs might make a Bassman too quiet for some situations, but a clean sounding rig and a well set up P bass aren't going to lose you many gigs.
  14. So are you planning on buying the POD, a power amp and speaker cab, or just the POD and running it through the PA?

    I went to your web site (great pics) to get a little more background/info, and if the Hartke isn't doing it for you sound/volume wise, I would suggest buying an amp head and seperate speaker cab. I know it's hard to find your sound and know what you want, but a trip to the music store and a day with your bass might give you a really good idea of what you're looking for.
  15. Showdown

    Showdown Supporting Member

    Jan 21, 2002
    Honolulu, Hawaii
    I agree. I've used one on a lot of gigs, into a power amp and speaker. Sounds great, as long as you use the "no cabinet" option.
  16. Acepiloto


    Aug 25, 2000

    When I record, I put it on "direct" and turn on the cab sims. But live, I set it to "amp" and turn the cab sims off, I get good results with it. I like being able to switch effects or switch from od to clean, and switching eq settings. Just seems more versatile.
  17. Guys,

    I'm going to have to hook up my Bass POD through the effects return in my Carvin head and see what I can get. I do like the Marshall Major and the Marshall Superbass when I record. I have not done that yet although I've thought about it. Maybe some of the other amp models will sound good.

    Barry :bassist:
  18. Chasarms

    Chasarms Casual Observer

    May 24, 2001
    Bettendorf, IA USA
    I have a POD Pro. I have played it dozens of times live DI to the PA with no amp. If you have a VERY good PA, you will get a very good tone. If not, you won't. But then again, if the venue is large enough to require reinforcement, that'll be the case no matter what sort of preamp source you are running.

    I personally think that the PODs also work pretty well used as a preamp with a power amp and cabinet. There's no doubt that the real deal sounds better soloed but in the reality of a blasting guitar and live drums, the modeled version of whatever works just fine. Any compromises are made up for in the flexibility of the POD.

    This is especially the case with the SS models. The sounds of the tube models are fine, but you just don't get the response from the head that real tubes give you. You may be able to model the sound, but you can't make a modeled tube naturally compress.

    The tuner and the compressor on the POD are excellent. If you use effects, the ones in the POD are very usable.

    All that being said, mine is collecting dust, and I am playing the Q5 with one cable straight into the Ampeg (Old 80s SS SVT) with a 115 (80s SVT) and 210 (Newer Classic). I can't imagine being happier with my sound. 350 RMS of pure Ampeg delight.

    I'll break out the POD in sixth months and be smitten with it again I'm sure.

  19. Showdown

    Showdown Supporting Member

    Jan 21, 2002
    Honolulu, Hawaii
    I hadn't used my POD in a couple of months because in the interest of simplicity I bought an Ashdown EB-180 for smaller gigs. It is a nice sounding amp, but it didn't have the warmth I'm used to (it is their cheap SS combo). The other day I tried my POD into it, with the amps EQ switched off, and it sounds great. Warm and fat, just what I had been missing with the Ashdown.

    I also sometimes use a Behringer Bass V-Amp into a power amp and speaker. It is rack mounted (my POD is one of the bean shaped ones) and more convenient. It sounds as good as the POD, has better effects, and has a few guitar amp models too. I would really recommend either POD or V-Amp.
  20. I have a POD pro with a bbe 882i after it. sounds great.