Line 6 TonePort UX2

Link your guitar and computer, with software amp simulations and effects

Line 6 has a long history in amp simulation software, starting with the acclaimed Amp Farm for Pro Tools systems.

And with the GuitarPort and the USB connections on some of the POD range, they have been making the interfacing between guitar and computer more convenient. TonePort may be Line 6’s most comprehensive integration of guitar and computer to date. It is a well-equipped USB audio interface coupled with a set of amp and effect models in the form of the GearBox software.

While TonePort is indeed an audio interface and will happily play back audio from your computer, it will only put audio into the computer if the included GearBox software is active. GearBox can stand alone as a source of sounds for practising but can also be used in recording as the ‘front end’ for any sequencer. You play through GearBox and the sounds are recorded on your sequencer, rather like the insert effects used in a portable hardware studio. Communication between TonePort and computer is via USB, but the hardware can also output the GearBox sounds through a pair of analogue outputs to a mixing desk or hardware recorder.

TonePort can handle guitar, microphone or line level signals through its various inputs - guitar and vocals can be recorded at the same time and routed to different tracks on your sequencer, as there are two internal stereo sends. A stereo monitor input jack lets you monitor external sounds alongside the computer audio, while adding footswitches enables you to control the various TonePort and sequencer functions.

The GearBox software features 16 classic and modern guitar amplifiers and 24 guitar speaker cabinet models from the PODxt, and five bass amp and cab models from the Bass PODxt. There are also 24 stompbox and studio effects, plus six virtual studio preamps for recording vocals. The whole package also comes bundled with a special edition of Ableton Live Lite recording software.

 

In use

Installing the software and getting going with TonePort is a simple operation that takes a matter of minutes. When you fire up Gearbox you'll be given plenty of help, with a dialogue box popping up to ask whether you want help setting it up, and taking you to a well laid-out electronic manual. There’s loads of functionality here, with plenty of options for recording various signals with direct no-latency monitoring of the affected sound.

As far as that sound goes, anyone familiar with POD will instantly recognise the collection of amp models and effects here. With the Fender, Vox, Marshall and other emulations alongside Line 6’s own creations it is possible to dial in just about any guitar tone that you want either for recording or practice. A large number of presets in various categories gives you a whole bunch of guitar and bass sounds for instant use or as a basis for editing.

For recording vocals or anything else through the mic inputs, the included preamp models that are based on Neve, Avalon and other high-end designs, coupled with a modelled LA-2A compressor, add a bit of class to the raw mic signal and make a valuable contribution to the recorded sound.

The overall impression is of a versatile system for recording any type of musical signal into your computer and getting the exact sound that you want. Alternatively, you may wish to think of it as a software version of a POD, resident in your computer.

MusicRadar Rating

4.5 / 5 stars
Pros

PODxt sounds without buying a PODxt. Versatile recording system.

Cons

Build quality a little lightweight.

Verdict

The TonePort UX2, although light in weight, could be a little more portable. It is, however, a versatile interface for guitar and microphone signals, equipped with a large range of Line 6 quality sounds that cover just about all the bases when it comes to recording.

OS Requirements

Apple Mac OS X 10.4 or later Microsoft Windows 2000 SP4 or later Microsoft Windows XP SP2 Home Microsoft Windows XP SP2 Professional

Power Supply

USB

Additional Features

150 presets. 24 guitar speaker cabinet models from PODxt and five bass amp and cab models from the Bass PODxt. 24 stompbox and studio effects plus six virtual studio preamps for recording vocals.

Country of Origin

China

Additional Requirements

Drive speed 5,400rpm minimum (7,200rpm or faster recommended). CD-ROM drive, internet connection for online features, one free USB 1.1 or 2.0 compatible port on computer, or self-powered USB hub

Ram Required (MB)

512

Recommended Hard Disk Space (GB)

1

Height (mm)

80

Options

UX1 is a smaller version of the hardware at £102 with one guitar input and one mic input Software add-ons expand the GearBox model set to a total of 72 amp and 84 effect models

Available Outputs

6.4mm jack monitor outputs (L/R)

Width (mm)

255

Supported Audio Drivers

ASIO Core Audio WDM

Phantom Power

Yes

Depth (mm)

153

Sampling Frequency

44.1 48 96

Description

Guitar performance and recording system with USB audio interface

Platform

MacOS/Windows

No of Inputs

9

Review Policy
All MusicRadar's reviews are by independent product specialists, who are not aligned to any gear manufacturer or retailer. Our experts also write for renowned magazines such as Guitarist, Total Guitar, Computer Music, Future Music and Rhythm. All are part of Future PLC, the biggest publisher of music making magazines in the world.

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