Select Page

If you were wondering whether to get the older version PODxt Live or the newer POD X3 Live, hopefully my review will give you crucial information you can use to make a more informed decision.

After some careful debating, online research, and consideration I took the plunge and bought a PODxt Live. This is my review of how I bought it, what I think of it, and how I think it compares to the POD X3 Live (which is the newer more expensive version.

Line 6 has revolutionized “modeling pedals” and the ways guitarists get tones and sounds. They make many different produts, the most famous of which is the kidney bean shaped “POD” that many of us either love or hate. That has evolved into many different versions, including a rack mounted POD, and the floor version for the live stage – which are the original “Podxt Live” and the newer “Pod X3 Live”.

Here’s both versions:

Line 6 POD XT Live Guitar Multi Effects Pedal Standard

Line 6 POD XT Live Guitar Multi Effects Pedal Standard

Rugged steel construction. 11 channel select and effect on/off footswitches. Built-in wah/volume/tweak pedal. 84 pro-quality stompbox and studio effects. 36 amp models. 24 cab models. 4 mic models. Award-winning technology and sounds from the Vetta II amp. 128 programmable channels. Variax digital input. USB digital I/O. Line 6 Edit software for computer editing and direct digital recording.

Line 6 POD X3 Live Guitar Multi Effects Pedal Standard

Line 6 POD X3 Live Guitar Multi Effects Pedal Standard

Inputs & Outputs. 1/4" Instrument Input (w/ Normal/Pad Switch). XLR Microphone Input (w/ Trim Adjust). USB 2.0 for Computer Recording & Tone Editing. S/PDIF Stereo Digital Audio Output. Stereo 1/4" Line Outputs (with Amp/Line Pad Switch). Stereo XLR Balanced Line Outputs. 1/4" Stereo Effect Loop. Variax Digital Connector. 1/4" Expression Pedal Input. Midi In & Out/Thru. 1/4" Stereo Headphones Out. FBV Connector for optional Pedal Controller. 1/8" Stereo (CD/MP3) Jam Along Input. Controls. Expansive Backlit LCD Display. 8 Chrome "Amp Control" Knobs: Drive, Bass, Mid, Treble, Presence, Reverb, Tone Volume, Master Volume. 5 Metal Stompbox On/Off Footswitches: Amp, Stomp, Mod, Delay, Comp/Boost. Built-in Heavy-Duty Wah/Volume/Expression Pedal. Metal Tap Tempo/Tuner Footswitch. Dedicated Bank Up/Down & A/B/C/D Metal Footswitches for Preset Selection. Dedicated "Dual Tone" Control Metal Footswitch. 5 Context-Sensitive Pa

Pod XT Live and Pod X3 Live Comparison

Here are the main differences between the two units that I’ve observed:

  • XT is $399 retail, X3 is $499 retail
  • XT has 36 guitar amps, X3 has 76
  • XT has 84 stompbox and studio effects, X3 has 98
  • XT has no vocal preamps (or vocal input), X3 has 6
  • XT is USB 1.1, X3 is USB 2.0 (faster) conneciton
  • XT can do one tone at once, X3 can blend 2 patches together
  • XT has a smaller LCD display, X3’s is nearly double the size
  • XT has traditional out, X3 has S/PDIF and XLR out in addition to 1/4″ jacks

When I first decided to get the “Live” Pod I was going to get the X3 Live since it was the newest version. And if money is no object – you should as well. But I wanted to get a “gently used” one on eBay so I poured over auctions for a day and snagged up a Buy it Now auction for $265 for what I thought was the X3. Later that day I realized I hadn’t paid attention and I’d bought an POD “XT” Live. I was angry at first, but realized most of the X3’s were selling from $380-$450, so price wise I feel I had gotten a good deal. What I didn’t know was feature wise whether or not I should re-sell it and get an updated X3 or not.

What I didn’t know about Line 6 and Pod’s…

I think Line 6 has got some great products, but what they also have is a cash cow. With and “POD” product there is always “more” to buy. With my Podxt Live, the Line 6 Monkey software ( to update it ) is free, and Line 6 Edit Software ( to edit the patches using a computer ) is free as well. But Line 6 has “add-ons” that are kind of essential that cost money.

Model Packs
My Podxt Live came with 36 guitar amps and the X3 has 76. There are 2 amp packs you can buy “Metalshop” and “Collector Classics” and each is $49.95. Metalshop gives you 18 additional amps, and this pack I did purchase – and it was worth it for the Bogner and JCM-900 amp models alone. The collector classics packs has 18 additional amps as well. This means that there are 4 amps in the X3 you can’t get any other way, but you can upgrade your XT with these 2 packs and get nearly all the amps in an X3 – it’ll just run you $99 to get them. I don’t have the Collector Classics pack – I don’t know if I’ll ever have a need to get it.

Gearbox is an application that gives you an additial way to edit and store your tones, but also it has a “plugin” that allows you use your PODxt Live (or other POD’s) for digital recording on your computer. So, if you have Pro-Tools, Steinberg, Cubase, Cakewalk, or other recording software, you won’t be able to record using your POD and it’s tones without this Gearbox plugin – which is $99.

So depending on what you need to use your POD for, you might need to spend some extra $$ right out of the box!

Buy the POD XT or POD X3 Live?

Now that I own a PODxt Live, I am VERY happy with it and it gives me some of the most awesome tones! I use it for metal, pop, country, blues, and modern rock sounds. I have read reviews of the X3 live that say the footswitch buttons (on some early units) are either faulty or break easily. There have also been many reports of issues with the Variax and microphone inputs. Many units have had to be replaced, but many say that the newer versions are updated without these issues. I have heard of none of these issues with the Pod XT.

If you are trying to make a decision on which to buy – I would say that it pretty much depends on the money (how much you are willing to spend) and whether or not you care about the digital outputs. The two-tone blending of the X3 would be nice, but is not a “must-have” for probably 95% of guitarist out there. I think what I’ll do is probably use the XT for another 6 months or more, and then buy an X3 – and keep the XT as my backup.

In any event – you can use the links above for new retail versions of the POD XT Live and POD X3 Live, or follow these links to get a bargain on a gently used one on eBay in live auctions right now…

Line 6 POD XT Live Guitar Multi Effects Pedal 128 Programmable Channels

USD / 75.00 (1 Bid) | Buy It Now
End time: 2018-03-02 04:02:24

Line 6 Pod XT Live Guitar Multi-Effects Pedal & Power Supply P-05441

USD / 133.00 (0 Bid) | Buy It Now
End time: 2018-02-27 14:17:30

Line 6 Bass Pod XT Live Multi-Effects Pedal with Power Supply and Gator Case

USD / 70.00 (9 Bids) | Buy It Now
End time: 2018-03-03 23:20:21

Line 6 Pod XT Live Multi-Effects Guitar Effect Pedal

USD 180.00 (0 Bid) | Buy It Now
End time: 2018-02-28 01:39:23

Line 6 POD XT Live Guitar Modeler

USD 180.00 (0 Bid) | Buy It Now
End time: 2018-03-03 17:01:39

Line 6 POD XT Live Pro Guitar Tone Controller& Multi-Effects Guitar Effect Pedal

USD / 169.00 (0 Bid) | Buy It Now
End time: 2018-03-03 02:36:01

Line 6 POD XT Live Multi-Effects Floorboard * WORKS GREAT * FULLY TESTED

USD / 89.99 (0 Bid) | Buy It Now
End time: 2018-03-01 00:55:49

9V Line 6 POD XT Live Effects processor replacement power supply

USD 15.99 (0 Bid) | Buy It Now
End time: 2018-03-01 06:21:17

Line 6 POD XT Live Multi-Effects Floorboard w/ power supply, good condition

USD 85.00 (0 Bid) | Buy It Now
End time: 2018-03-03 02:00:46

LINE 6 POD XT LIVE Used effects pedal(2331

USD 180.14 (0 Bid) | Buy It Now
End time: 2018-02-27 05:26:53

Line 6 POD X3 Live Guitar Multi-Effects Pedal

USD 200.00 (0 Bid) | Buy It Now
End time: 2018-03-02 00:56:31

Line 6 POD X3 LIVE Artist Patches Guitar Effects Presets Settings Windows Mac

USD 7.00 (0 Bid) | Buy It Now
End time: 2018-02-27 09:21:16

LINE 6 POD X3 LIVE Used effects pedal(3742

USD 257.94 (0 Bid) | Buy It Now
End time: 2018-02-27 05:26:35

Patches - Tones for Line6 Line 6 POD X3, X3 LIVE, X3 PRO - 1 800+ files

USD 9.90 (0 Bid) | Buy It Now
End time: 2018-03-03 15:20:53

Line 6 FG5 Padded Gig Bag for POD HD500, POD xt Live, and POD X3 Live +Picks

USD 68.99 (0 Bid) | Buy It Now
End time: 2018-02-28 20:41:53

AC Adapter For Line 6 Guitar Effects Pedal, Multi-Effects Processor Power Supply

USD 29.99 (0 Bid) | Buy It Now
End time: 2018-03-02 09:35:12

USB PC Cable Cord For Line 6 Bass Pod XT Live Multi-Effects Pedal Studio X3 KB37

USD 5.85 (0 Bid) | Buy It Now
End time: 2018-03-03 09:29:23

Rock, Pop Vol. 1 - 500 Patches for Line6 POD XT, Pro, Live, X3, Vetta on CD-ROM

USD 5.97 (0 Bid) | Buy It Now
End time: 2018-02-26 03:30:15

1,000 Classic Rock, Country, Blues Patches for Line6 POD XT Pro Live X3 CD-ROM

USD 5.97 (0 Bid) | Buy It Now
End time: 2018-02-26 02:59:40

Jazz, Jam, Funk, RnB Patches for Line6 POD XT, Pro, Live, X3, Vetta on CD-ROM

USD 5.97 (0 Bid) | Buy It Now
End time: 2018-03-04 22:00:00