Line 6 ToneCore DSP Developer Kit – Hack Your Stompbox, Digitally.

I used to take great delight in hacking old guitar stomp boxes to make them create weird noises. Replacing resisters and pots, soldering in new connections where there were none previously, etc. I was blissfully ignorant when it came to electronics, and as often as not I’d screw it up and have to un-hack it to get it working again, but on the occasions when it worked and came out with delightfully messed-up noises, man, I knew I’d be walking into the next band practice with a killer new toy to show my mates.

Fast forward a bunch of years, and I still enjoy making boxes to emit odd noises from my guitar, just they are all virtual. VST development is a bunch of fun, don’t get me wrong, but I do sometimes miss the tactile element. Nothing compares to stepping on that pedal at a climactic moment of a song and unleashing all that beautiful noise.

So Line 6’s Tonecore DSP Developer Kit looks really interesting. It’s basically the same modular stompbox they use in their normal pedals, but with a USB port and requisite PC software to write your own DSP code and download it to the stompbox. Step 1, hack code to screw up the incoming audio into whatever delightful cacophony you like. Step 2, dump down to stompbox. Step 3, get the girl, kill the baddie and be king of band practice again. Ok, so Step 3 probably needs some more work, but still, I’m so buying one of these. Check out the video below.


If you can’t see the video above, try here.

In the video he says it’ll be available in "the Summer", which is my Winter, and it’s Autumn here already, so here’s hoping they don’t slip. I wonder if you can pre-order?

Also, what a cool way to get kids who only want to play guitar into programming.



  • […] you liked the idea of the Line6 Tonecore DSP thing that I posted about, but the coding part scared you off? Hmmmm, well, maybe the Beavis Board […]

  • Nothing can be cooler than this pedal! I’ll definitely get this one.

  • Hello,
    I know this is ten years old and probably not thought about by the writer in 9 of those. Anyways, have you used the pedal since the initial glow wore off? I’ve been seeing these for sale and since I’m cheap by nature there has been an attraction, but I don’t want another paperweight. Did anyone continue to use these? I see a bunch of posts from ’08-09, even ’12, so whats the deal? Is it worth picking up on ebay, or should I leave this one in the dustbin of programming/sales/guitar crap history? Thanks Chrisfromiowa

    • I can only speak for myself, but yeah, the glow wore off. If you’re a really into writing your own DSP then I can see it being a more useful, but if you’re just a tinkerer like me, I end up using Pure Data on my laptop much more.

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