Price paid: $ 364.17
Purchased from: Sound Control Newcastle
Sound — 8
High sound quality, low hum. Can't complain. Obviuosly the high gain dist and od make a racket, but minimal use of the noise gate can normally sort this out. After 5 minutes the overall sound blew the AX1500 away. Though that unit is capable of some nice sounds once you have fiddled through the menus. The Drive settings are generally very good, although I sometimes long for a bit more beef on the OD-1. I generally use the OD-2 and crunch settings the most. Mod, chorus flange and phase very good, I havent found a use for the vibrato or the UNI-V that the website rates so highly. Harmonist lead lines can sound pretty impressive when coupled with metal distortion, though its cheating of course. Delay, it delays, nowt special. The hold function can create a 2 sec "loop" function that must annoy the neighbours. Reverb leaves something to be desired, no subtlety, gets very muddy very easily. But its acceptable Compression, priceless. Although the controls are a little limiting, level and sustain. An attack dial would be an improvement Tone Mod, I use as little as possible. Expression pedal, the one place where the AX1500 really shone, the me50 has a reasonable wah and resonance, the voice wah is not that great, if you want living on a prayer vocoder (if you're cheese inclined) use the AX1500. pedal pitch shift is only 1 octave +/-. compared to many pedals that offer 2 octaves. I never got the point of ring mod. I probably should have mentioned the memory banks by now, but they are easy to forget about as I use the manual mode more often. Basically there are 10 banks, each with three patches, chosen by the 3 stomp pedals. Bank can be changed via an external 1 or 2 pedal Switch (obv it doesnt have to be a Boss one, I use a Marshall that came free with my amp. It's so easy to create and recreate sounds in the manual mode that I don't bother with the banks for practise and rehearsal. If I'm gigging, I store settings I need in the first few patches the night before. I give this pedal 8 for tone and features, my only complaints being the reverb and the compression.
Overall Impression — 9
I play all kinds of music, jazz, pop, rock, I use this pedal for all styles and it suits me well. I have been playing for 5 or 6 years now, before I bouoght this pedal I used a Zoom 505 #2, so this is a big upgrade. I usually play an Ibanez Artcore (lovely hollowbody, great sound for the price) through this pedal and into a Marshall 80 watt acoustic combo (I like this amp for jazz, and it works well for other styles too) or occasionally a Laney 65watt combo I wish I had waited a week before purchasing this pedal, as it was 30 cheaper next time I was in the store! If it were stolen/lost I would probably buy it again, unless something new crops up The thing that sets this pedal apart from other multifx units is the ease of use, it takes barely any time to create impressive tones. Improvements? I would look for a 2 8VE pitch shift and more compression options. Improved reverb. And maybe some envelope functions? Based on the above ratings I should really give the pedal an overall 10, but nobody is perfect!
Reliability & Durability — 10
Great. If you threw it at someone, it would demolish their house and not affect the pedal. As has been said before, it's a Boss. I would use it without a backup.
Ease of Use — 10
Brilliant! That is what I love about this pedal! And I'll probably mention it several times more in the next few minutes. Completely idiot proof technology in manual mode, plug-in and bang on the pedals and twiddle the dials. When I bought this I was comparing it to the Korg AX1500G (cheaper and packed with features) and the Boss GT-8 (pricey and need a degree to work it). I plumped for this pedal, because I could dial up sounds in a matter of seconds without having to use dreaded menus. Writing patches on the memory is also very easy. Setup the pedal, press write, choose bank and patch and press the write button a couple of times. The manual is simple, though its not necessary to consult it after a few minutes of use. Gives the details of the factory preset patches, but because the maximum value for each effect parameter is not given, I am uncertain of how to read parts of the table. Overall, this pedal is free of the dreaded menus that have annoyed me with previous pedals and sounds can be produced in seconds, so I give it 10 for ease of use.