Learn the Ins and Outs of the Pro Pedal Command Centers from BOSS
A large pedalboard loaded with effects is a great thing to have, putting a ton of creative sound-shaping potential at your feet. But if you’re simply chaining your pedals together one after the other, you might not be getting the most out of your system. For one, you have to manually step on each pedal to create different effects combinations, and this can be tricky in the middle of performing. What’s more, your tone quality can suffer by running through all those stomps, even when they’re bypassed. Running many BOSS pedals in this way is not a problem; however, it can be an issue when running one or more “true bypass” pedals, as well as some older stomp designs that alter the straight tone when turned off.
The ES-8 and ES-5 Effects Switching Systems from BOSS solve all these issues and many others. They bring your rig under control with optimized sound quality, one-touch access to various effects combos, MIDI functionality, and more. We’ve recently put together a series of Quick Start videos for the ES-8 and ES-5 that walk through setting up basic functions for real-world use. Read on to watch the videos and learn about the ways these powerful switchers put you in complete creative command of your pedalboard.
Playlist: ES-8 Quick Start Videos
Playlist: ES-5 Quick Start Videos
Note: The ES-8 and ES-5 videos include subtitles that describe the onscreen functions. If subtitle text isn’t displayed, click the gear icon in the video player and set Subtitles/CC to the desired language.
The ES-8 and ES-5 Effects Switching Systems: Professional Pedalboard Control
For a long time now, top-level touring players have relied on custom effects switching systems specially designed for their needs. They make performing easier by allowing them to recall complex effects and amp combinations at the touch of a button, and to control many different effects parameters in real time. A key design goal for these types of systems is to maintain the best tone possible at all times. This is accomplished using top-quality circuitry for audio transfer and switching, and by creating an optimized signal path that runs the instrument through effects only when needed. Another vital function is to apply signal buffering as necessary to ensure a clean, consistent, and punchy sound, even with long cable runs.
Offering transparent sound quality and high-end features, the ES-8 and ES-5 deliver performance and versatility that rivals specialized (and much more expensive) pedal switchers from boutique manufacturers and custom rig builders. With one of these systems at the heart of your pedalboard, you’ll take your sound to a whole new level of quality, power, and control.
The flagship ES-8 features eight audio loops (six mono and two stereo), 800 patch memories, switchable input and output buffers, parallel loop functionality (for effects carryover and side-by-side processing), jacks for amp channel switching, MIDI, and much more. The heavy-duty footswitches can be assigned to recall patches, switch loops on/off, control effects parameters, and many other functions, and the loops can be reordered at will to create all sorts of unique effects.
Equipped with five mono audio loops, the ES-5 offers the essential features of the ES-8 in a smaller format that’s perfect for more modest pedalboards and fly rigs.
To further explore the creative advantages that can be gained with a BOSS effects switching system, check out our in-depth ES-8 Deep Dive article. While it focuses on the extended capabilities of the ES-8, many of the concepts presented can be applied to the ES-5 as well.