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Worst amp ever?

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I have a spider IV 15W, and used to have a Spider V 120W.

I assumed the Spider V would be a good step up. Wrong! Best advice I once was given, and can only suggest here is, if you're going to buy any kind of audio equipment - go listen first!

I didn't, not for the Spider V anyway. As soon as I switched it on I knew I didn't like it. 

So I read the reviews. Not good. I took on-board the positive advice. I played with the settings. I downloaded hundreds of tones. I downloaded the 'rated' tones. I stuck with it for a year. I struggled.

One night my wife needed the room where my gear is. For convenience I took my Spider IV 15W downstairs to practice. Hadn't switched it on in months, but OMW it sounded good. That is - compared to the Spider V!

I knew then I had to change! 

I traded in my Spider V 120W, Shortboard mkII, & Relay G10 - toward a Boss Katana 100/212. 

I've not stopped smiling since!!!

This time I went to the shop & listened. I shortlisted a Marshall, Blackstar & Orange tube amp (all 5W to 15W - home & small venue). Didn't like the Marshall or Blackstar in the end. Orange was only ok for me. Turns out I prefer open back combos over closed back. This isn't the reason why the Spider V doesn't work for me though. Spider V = lots of fizz, poor tone & no cut through!

Big shout out to Reidys, Blackburn, UK here. The guy gave me 15 mins on each amp, listened to my comments - then said - I know what you'll like. 

As soon as I heard the Katana 100/212 I was smiling. As I said - I've not stopped smiling since. Not a modelling amp - but 4 (+acoustic) styles + effects, & geesh it's loud!!!! Wife hates it!!!! smile.gif

Main things - good tone at all gains and volumes! I might be a Boss/Roland convert. Going to listen to a GT-100 next week.

My advice - go listen!! My suggestion - don't buy a Spider V - buy a Boss Katana. Buy a 100W. Buy the 100/212 if you can!

Note - I had lots of tech with my Spider V setup. I had the radio link, tuner, and volume/wah pedals and more... I don't have these with the Katana. (I did buy the GA-FC on day one to be able to select the channels). But so what - sound quality is king. Tech is 2nd. I'll add those other features back over time. But - only after I've listened first!!!

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I have a spider IV 15W, and used to have a Spider V 120W.

 

I assumed the Spider V would be a good step up. Wrong! Best advice I once was given, and can only suggest here is, if you're going to buy any kind of audio equipment - go listen first!

 

I didn't, not for the Spider V anyway. As soon as I switched it on I knew I didn't like it. 

 

So I read the reviews. Not good. I took on-board the positive advice. I played with the settings. I downloaded hundreds of tones. I downloaded the 'rated' tones. I stuck with it for a year. I struggled.

 

One night my wife needed the room where my gear is. For convenience I took my Spider IV 15W downstairs to practice. Hadn't switched it on in months, but OMW it sounded good. That is - compared to the Spider V!

 

I knew then I had to change! 

 

I traded in my Spider V 120W, Shortboard mkII, & Relay G10 - toward a Boss Katana 100/212. 

 

I've not stopped smiling since!!!

 

This time I went to the shop & listened. I shortlisted a Marshall, Blackstar & Orange tube amp (all 5W to 15W - home & small venue). Didn't like the Marshall or Blackstar in the end. Orange was only ok for me. Turns out I prefer open back combos over closed back. This isn't the reason why the Spider V doesn't work for me though. Spider V = lots of fizz, poor tone & no cut through!

 

Big shout out to Reidys, Blackburn, UK here. The guy gave me 15 mins on each amp, listened to my comments - then said - I know what you'll like. 

 

As soon as I heard the Katana 100/212 I was smiling. As I said - I've not stopped smiling since. Not a modelling amp - but 4 (+acoustic) styles + effects, & geesh it's loud!!!! Wife hates it!!!! smile.gif

 

Main things - good tone at all gains and volumes! I might be a Boss/Roland convert. Going to listen to a GT-100 next week.

 

My advice - go listen!! My suggestion - don't buy a Spider V - buy a Boss Katana. Buy a 100W. Buy the 100/212 if you can!

 

Note - I had lots of tech with my Spider V setup. I had the radio link, tuner, and volume/wah pedals and more... I don't have these with the Katana. (I did buy the GA-FC on day one to be able to select the channels). But so what - sound quality is king. Tech is 2nd. I'll add those other features back over time. But - only after I've listened

 I totally agree that you should listen before buying an amp. Maybe the Spider V has too many options for tone shaping for you,because I'm getting stellar tones with mine. YMMV

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Spider V is a modeling amp and has full range speakers. Modelers are made to tweak. You have to when you have cabinets, amp models, eq's, drives with EQ's. Prior versions of Spider's were not based on full range amplification. Models tweaked for a guitar speaker. That is what Boss did with Katana. That is what they did with BlackStar ID amps. I followed the video ideas on using parametric eq with Spider V. It helped resolve many of my sound tweaks. It's on Youtube. I posted the link here. Once you learn to use this in presets, the amp will really come alive.

 

Katana is too one trick pony for me. I bought one. I Didn't like it. I won't argue about it. I needed an amp with all the versatility of the Spider V, or Amplifi. Spider V had all the options I need in controllers, and the built in wireless was the deal maker.

 

My Spider V also has great sound from the XLR outputs to our pa board. That output is stereo and sounds incredibly full. We haven't really used my amp loud because we like the XLR out sound. It is much easier to work with our band, and we don't have loud amps mic'd we have to contend with. This way, it's more like my modeler, but it has the amplification that can get loud if I need it to.

Spider V has a lot to offer to any player that needs the versatility and routing that I do.

 

Here are links for eq use

 



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My $.02...  I've been using Line6 amps since the days of AX212.  I like the versatility because I've been in cover bands forever, trying to make my guitar sound like the tunes I'm covering. (But I also like to randomly choose a preset and just improvise to see what the preset inspires me to play)  I agree that many of the stock sounds are undesirable... for my needs.  But there are also many I use as a starting point.  What I always do with modeling amps is to go through all the presets and note on paper which presets I like without any adjustments.  Then I go through that list of presets, decide which ones I want in my battery of sounds and tweak them to get them sounding just the way I want. Tweaking means adding or subtracting Drive, Compression, EQ, Reverb and maybe adding a little Delay or Chorus.  Usually I need 4 presets for rhythm - clean, clean with some edge, distorted and balls-out distorted - and 4 more presets using those same presets but with a volume boost for solos.  For 90% of songs I cover, those 8 presets will get me through a gig.  Then I'll need maybe a dozen more for special effects presets like "Living on a Prayer" for which I need a reverse auto-wah. And that's how I work.  Yes, it's a lot of work, but it's also a lot of fun playing with guitar technology.  It satisfies the computer geek in me.  :rolleyes:  And like has been said before, the wireless feature of the Spider V was a deal-maker but also a deal-maker was the reduction of weight in the 120 and 240 models.  Add to that the major reduction in price I got because I'm a frequent customer at the local ma and pa store - always a good way to get good prices.

 

A last thought... what is critical to preset tweaking is knowing that the sound changes DRASTICALLY as you change the Master Volume. At low master volume levels you'll find a lack of high end and low end, but if you compensate for that lack, you'll find that at high master volume levels, like those you would use on stage, you've got way too much high end and low end. So you need to tweak presets with the volume level as close to stage volume as possible. Ask your neighbors for forgiveness in advance !

 

PS - In case you're wondering, PEQ = "parametric" EQ which means an EQ effect that allows you to set the center frequency of the slider you'll use to add/subtract the amount of equalization at a given frequency (as well as setting the "Q" or width (range) of the affected frequencies on both sides of the center frequency).  For example, if I feel I need more bass at 160 Hz, but whereas on a GEQ (Graphical EQ which does NOT allow you to set the frequency center or width) effect there is no slider for 160Hz (7-band GEQ effects usually have sliders for 120 Hz and 240 Hz), with a PEQ device I can set on a slider the center frequency to be 160 Hz.  PEQ gives you the most versatility for EQ'ing a preset. 

 

Keep in mind that you're EQ'ing to compensate for "bad" acoustics of the room in which you're playing, of the amplification device(s) you're using and of the acoustic properties of your guitar's electronics and wood. The guitar and amps won't change from gig to gig, but the room acoustics will. I create my presets in my studio which is wall-to-wall carpeting (tends to deaden or absorb the sound).  When I perform, the rooms typically have more reflective surfaces which result in amplifying various frequencies (whose effect is less a consideration as more people come close to the stage to dance - yes, peoples' clothes do "hide" some of the room's reflective surfaces!). You won't want to create presets for every room you play, but do understand these dynamics so you don't end up judging your setup whose sound is affected by the acoustic environment.

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If you cant get a god tone out of one of these your doing something wrong seriously.

I run mine out to a Mesa cab and play a Les Paul through it, it sounds amazing, I had to take a pre set and take it apart and rebuild it for me, but then it was awesome!!

I cant imagine that you cant dial in a god tone, thats just crazy.

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If you start with an amp, find one you like, then if you are making a good distortion then find a pedal you like spend some time, then when you have the amp and the pedal even if it isnt perfect yet its ok, shut off the noise gate and run through the cabinets and microphones, they all make a difference, by the time you are done with the amp, the cab, the pedal, and the noise gate, you should be pretty close to what you are looking for.

Only problem is there are way too many choices so it can take a while.

Save your progress to one of the 4 empty banks in 32 and then tweak away.

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Has anyone tried simply replacing the speaker?   Most of the critiques I’ve heard talk about how they sound great with headphones or through a board into stacks, but the Line 6 speakers just suck.  Any suggestions what speaker might make one actually sound “good”?

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On ‎6‎/‎29‎/‎2019 at 11:36 AM, ChrisC58 said:

Has anyone tried simply replacing the speaker?   Most of the critiques I’ve heard talk about how they sound great with headphones or through a board into stacks, but the Line 6 speakers just suck.  Any suggestions what speaker might make one actually sound “good”?


Personally, I don't think the speaker sucks at all.  I just think people don't know how to create the signal chain right.

 

Nevertheless, while you could theoretically swap out the speakers, Line 6 staff has repeatedly warned everyone not to.

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The factory tones were a bit bleh... so I erased them all. Now that they have made the tonecloud available on customtone I can just hook up to my pc and swap tones with greater ease than the mobile app. 

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I have the Helix Floor, Spider V30, and Spider V60. This is what I did to explore sounds and amp models on the V60. I created one preset from scratch that sounded good to my ears with basically just the amp, speaker, reverb and a little delay. Then I copied that preset 60 or so times, however many amp models there are. I then only changed the amp model and it's settings and saved each. Why? I'm an engineer and like to change one thing at a time sometimes. This allowed me to dial in every amp individually to the speaker model I chose. I then dialed in the amp settings individually to make each preset sound the best to my ears in my room. Now, I'm able to switch through all the presets (which only change the amp) and I'm able to see which amps I like best. I'm interested in doing this with the classic speaker mode now but haven't done that yet.

 

Overall, I really like the sound of the V30 in my small office and the V60 in my big living room. Do they sound as good as my Helix with my two EV ZLX 12P's in stereo? No. But they aren't meant to. I'm pretty happy with the Spider V's.

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On 7/8/2019 at 11:25 PM, Kilrahi said:


Personally, I don't think the speaker sucks at all.  I just think people don't know how to create the signal chain right.

 

 

Not least Line-6 !!

 

  .. Post EQ and choosing the right "cab"  is the key to superb tones from these amps , think of the Cab as a fixed EQ stage and ignore the irrelevant names given to them and you`ll be fine 

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Now with the "classic" speaker selection, the use of just the primary driver will give a more traditional tone to those thrown by the separate high frequency driver in the FRFR design.

 

Granted, the 8" in the V 30 isn't a fair comparison for the entire line up, but it would be interesting for some parties that didn't rate the prior Spider V "MK I" well to review the "MK II" and it's classic settings.   The difficulty for them to mike up the speaker will have been greatly reduced versus the FRFR.   Those of us that want the full range for acoustic can still select the FRFR setting, of course I go straight from the USB to my DAW so I don't experience the frustration of an external microphone.

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On 9/23/2017 at 3:25 PM, paulwareing2000 said:

I have a spider IV 15W, and used to have a Spider V 120W.

I assumed the Spider V would be a good step up. Wrong! Best advice I once was given, and can only suggest here is, if you're going to buy any kind of audio equipment - go listen first!

I didn't, not for the Spider V anyway. As soon as I switched it on I knew I didn't like it. 

So I read the reviews. Not good. I took on-board the positive advice. I played with the settings. I downloaded hundreds of tones. I downloaded the 'rated' tones. I stuck with it for a year. I struggled.

One night my wife needed the room where my gear is. For convenience I took my Spider IV 15W downstairs to practice. Hadn't switched it on in months, but OMW it sounded good. That is - compared to the Spider V!

I knew then I had to change! 

I traded in my Spider V 120W, Shortboard mkII, & Relay G10 - toward a Boss Katana 100/212. 

I've not stopped smiling since!!!

This time I went to the shop & listened. I shortlisted a Marshall, Blackstar & Orange tube amp (all 5W to 15W - home & small venue). Didn't like the Marshall or Blackstar in the end. Orange was only ok for me. Turns out I prefer open back combos over closed back. This isn't the reason why the Spider V doesn't work for me though. Spider V = lots of fizz, poor tone & no cut through!

Big shout out to Reidys, Blackburn, UK here. The guy gave me 15 mins on each amp, listened to my comments - then said - I know what you'll like. 

As soon as I heard the Katana 100/212 I was smiling. As I said - I've not stopped smiling since. Not a modelling amp - but 4 (+acoustic) styles + effects, & geesh it's loud!!!! Wife hates it!!!! smile.gif

Main things - good tone at all gains and volumes! I might be a Boss/Roland convert. Going to listen to a GT-100 next week.

My advice - go listen!! My suggestion - don't buy a Spider V - buy a Boss Katana. Buy a 100W. Buy the 100/212 if you can!

Note - I had lots of tech with my Spider V setup. I had the radio link, tuner, and volume/wah pedals and more... I don't have these with the Katana. (I did buy the GA-FC on day one to be able to select the channels). But so what - sound quality is king. Tech is 2nd. I'll add those other features back over time. But - only after I've listened first!!!

 

To each their own. I never cracked a smile playing the Kanata as I found it limited and uninspiring. My 240HC stereo head though--through my Marshall 1960AV--gets me high every time. 

 

Just shows that everything is subjective. All in the ears of the beholder. 

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Good thread and great information throughout .... I echo what many have said in response here. I've had a bit of history with these Line 6 Spiders and personally, I feel that with these modelling amps you NEED to learn how to build your own patches to suit your personal taste buds. The tools are in there.  It takes a combo of skill, practice, plus trial and error. Not for the faint of heart. It comes with the territory. Like painting a picture, there are lots of outcomes that are possible.  I, like others here, have ALWAYS been able to get "something useful" out of these amps. You just have to work at it. I think the key (imho) is if you just plug in, try a few presets and hate everything you're hearing, it doesn't mean there isn't some really good sounds in the amp, it just means you haven't figured out how to get them (or more importantly what you want to hear) yet. You know the old saying "don't blame the tool" although the right tool for the job makes everything a lot easier. I enjoy the challenge of tweaking these amps, it is empowering to make something that I really like with them and I have always managed to do it.. Currently evaluating a Spider V 30 MKII, I like it but will probably get the 60 instead. A bit more appreciated bang for the buck over the 30 imho. The others upstream are too big/heavy for my needs.

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11 hours ago, Beacher said:

Good thread and great information throughout .... I echo what many have said in response here. I've had a bit of history with these Line 6 Spiders and personally, I feel that with these modelling amps you NEED to learn how to build your own patches to suit your personal taste buds. The tools are in there.  It takes a combo of skill, practice, plus trial and error. Not for the faint of heart. It comes with the territory. Like painting a picture, there are lots of outcomes that are possible.  I, like others here, have ALWAYS been able to get "something useful" out of these amps. You just have to work at it. I think the key (imho) is if you just plug in, try a few presets and hate everything you're hearing, it doesn't mean there isn't some really good sounds in the amp, it just means you haven't figured out how to get them (or more importantly what you want to hear) yet. You know the old saying "don't blame the tool" although the right tool for the job makes everything a lot easier. I enjoy the challenge of tweaking these amps, it is empowering to make something that I really like with them and I have always managed to do it.. Currently evaluating a Spider V 30 MKII, I like it but will probably get the 60 instead. A bit more appreciated bang for the buck over the 30 imho. The others upstream are too big/heavy for my needs.

Totally agree..

I am just starting out playing Electric Guitar (up to recently only accoustic), and i tried some used amp's i bought cheaply, just to figure out what amp i like best.

Now i obtained a spider v60 , and i am having a ball trying out all the possible presets  and tweaking them to sound the way i like and i must say that up to now i can tweak most of them to sound a lot better than the factory presets, but this takes time and patience..

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