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I'm still a fan. The user interface is great (with the tweak and tweez stickers in place!), the three presets plus tap is easily and flexible. The expression functionality is also killer- control one or more (or all!) the parameters simultaneously which makes it enormously flexible, expanding the options way beyond the three preset slots, it's also easy to set the expression up to work like a second bank of presets.
These days I have other delays I use more that a prefer sonically but I still have the DL4 in my signal chain for looping, reverse and a couple of other things.
 

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They can do something with an expression pedal that to this day no other delay can (we haven't tried the source audio one, but nothing else has done it).

That said, I've watched dan fix his more times than I care to count - and he's on his 7th?
 

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What feature can they do that can't be replicated on any other delay?
I'd assume the Line 6 m9 could pull off the same sounds also, with more features including 3 delays at once.
 

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What feature can they do that can't be replicated on any other delay?
I'd assume the Line 6 m9 could pull off the same sounds also, with more features including 3 delays at once.
I worded it poorly. The way it ramps into oscillation cant be replicated with other pedals. My dd-500 doesnt do it, the timeline doesnt do it, the flashback x4 doesnt do it. We havent tried with the echo station yet.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
They can do something with an expression pedal that to this day no other delay can (we haven't tried the source audio one, but nothing else has done it).

That said, I've watched dan fix his more times than I care to count - and he's on his 7th?
Yeah, I've heard they can break.
 

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They definitely have a reputation for not being the most reliable. Having said that, I bought mine used in 2002 or 2003 and someone had left the original batteries in it and they had leaked so the PCB was covered in corrosion. Cleaned it as best I could and it has surprisingly never failed me.
 

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It always baffled me that the Line 6 M5 had nearly all the features of all the modeller pedals (except for the Looper), and was retailing for less than what most modeller pedals are going for second hand, yet it wasn't winning over customers. Part of that seemed to be because L6 wasn't publicly declaring that it had all those features. Maybe that was because they wanted people to buy the pricier M9 and M13. I don't know.

But I encourage people who own a DL4 to explore the reprocessing capabilities of the stereo ins and outs, something L6 never did. One can take the output of one channel and feed it to the input of the second channel, yielding some interesting re-echo sounds.
 

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My understanding is that the M5/M9/M13 all include the entirety of the Echo Park, which is a distillation of the DL4. As near as I can tell from the panel, there doesn't seem to be anything "missing" in the Echo Park, withy the exception of what the multiple stompswitches accomplish. Instead of "analog" and "tape" settings being another click on the rotary dial, they are slide-switch mode settings on the Echo Park, and other programs on the M-series units.

What does the DL4 do that the EP and M-series don't? I'm not challenging your contention. I'm just working off something other than user-knowledge, and interested in understanding the quirks of these things.
 

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My understanding is that the M5/M9/M13 all include the entirety of the Echo Park, which is a distillation of the DL4. As near as I can tell from the panel, there doesn't seem to be anything "missing" in the Echo Park, withy the exception of what the multiple stompswitches accomplish. Instead of "analog" and "tape" settings being another click on the rotary dial, they are slide-switch mode settings on the Echo Park, and other programs on the M-series units.

What does the DL4 do that the EP and M-series don't? I'm not challenging your contention. I'm just working off something other than user-knowledge, and interested in understanding the quirks of these things.
You are correct, Mark. They are exactly the same. Software is software - and these are all software driven. The M9 does everything a DL4 does - times 25. I've owned both and I think you know which one I still own. Size for size, feature for feature, the M9 is better. It is also twice the price, so there's that.

I've also never had problems with the buttons on my M9, like I've heard many have had on their DL / DM's (I didn't have trouble with those either).
 

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I have not compared the DL4 to the M9 but I have read accounts of the two sounding different- apparent "improvements" to the tape and lo-res delays. I suspect it's primarily about the user interface though, maybe there something more inviting about the DL4 setup with larger knobs/no screen/preset switches.
 

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They are exactly the same. Software is software - and these are all software driven.
Line 6 have stated that there were a number of software "massages" and changes (improvements) made to the DL4 algorithms after they were integrated into the M series. The hardware is also significantly different- different convertors, different sample rates, etc.

M series obviously do way more but I think some people are drawn to the simplicity of the DL4. It's pretty incredible that it's still a viable product for them after what- 18 years?
 

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Line 6 have stated that there were a number of software "massages" and changes (improvements) made to the DL4 algorithms after they were integrated into the M series. The hardware is also significantly different- different convertors, different sample rates, etc.

M series obviously do way more but I think some people are drawn to the simplicity of the DL4. It's pretty incredible that it's still a viable product for them after what- 18 years?
Sure, I guess it's possible that the improvements they made, many not having anything to do with the sound, could have been seen as a negative effect to some people that really wanted the old version. Much like micro-cassettes are making a comeback in some cultures - they sound like crap but some people want that. The hardware changes just made the software more transparent or saved power - which again I suppose could have been seen as a negative to some people. Not to me, though.

I personally loved my DL4 until it got kicked off the board by the NovaDelay, 1/3 the size and many more features. Technology is like that - what is often seen as an improvement by the manufacturer and the majority of the public can be seen as a negative to a small groups of holdouts for the old stuff. Especially guitar players.

I wonder if we'll see people clinging to the first generation of Axe-FX or Helix stuff. I haven't seen that yet - most that buy that kind of thing seem to be into the improvements made to the platform and software over time. But there's always going to be that small contingent.
 

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I wonder if we'll see people clinging to the first generation of Axe-FX or Helix stuff.
That's a good question! I'm sure at some point someone will be singing the praises of the original Axe-FX "mojo" lol...

At the end of the day if a tool does the job you need it to, that's a good enough reason to use it.

Pretty amazing the DL4 still shows up on so many pro boards- probably a lot of 'if it ain't broke' don't fix it going on.
 

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Pretty amazing the DL4 still shows up on so many pro boards- probably a lot of 'if it ain't broke' don't fix it going on.
Yep, I agree. Partially the comfort zone. And partially the fact that they have someone to repair them, if in fact they did break down with regularity - something I've never experienced but it sounds like @Budda 's bandmate has. As an amateur, I have to really love it to keep fixing it that many times, unless the repair was as easy as replacing tubes or fuses (and/or I was fixing it myself). LOL
 
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While the non-looping aspects are readily found in the M5, I suspect it is a big financial step up to abandon a DL4 one already owns, for an M9 that has the same features as a DL4, and skip over the M5 (which only has the delay and reverb but not the looping or 4 stompswitches to control it). So if the looping means little to ya, the M5 is a more cost effective alternative to a DL4. But if the foot control over loops is important, and one doesn't want to have separate looper and delay pedals, or spend the money on an M9, I suppose a DL4 strikes a useful balance.
 

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I will say the DL4 was easier to use live, with the different settings available on different stomp switches. Scrolling through the M5 to get to the next setting was a PITA some nights - a problem easily solved with midi (or an M9).

But the M5 does have 24 different presets compared to the DL4's measly three, so there's that.
 

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I believe it's 20, not 24. On the other hand, mine is a pre-production unit, so they may have upgraded the firmware to allow more presets. But yeah, ideally one desires direct random access to presets, not a requirement to scroll through anything. Scrolling is fine for between tunes, while direct random access is critical for within/during a tune.
 
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