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Boss ME-70

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Postby cnev » March 15th, 2010, 8:26 am

Anyone have one of these and use it regularly? It was recommended to me by someone and reading the online reviews they were all good except someone mentioned the distortion was not that good and distortion is a core effect to me so if that isn't good I'm not sure I'd waste the money on it.
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Postby slejhamer » March 16th, 2010, 7:15 am

I've owned the ME-20, ME-50 and ME-50B. I don't own them anymore, though I'm reconsidering as I've been going through pedal flux lately.

These Boss units are decent. Not great, but okay. They do a few things very well, and lots of other things below par. Lots of gimmicky stuff like super-oscillator-polyoctave-alien spaceship sounds. You're getting a convenient form factor at a fair price, but I don't think the sound quality rivals good individual pedals that I've tried.

I think you need to try one in YOUR amp, because the type of speaker/cab you use really makes a difference in how they sound. Multi-fx units with amp simulation are often geared to full-range, flat response systems (like a keyboard amp or PA), but in this case you can defeat the amp sims and just use it in individual pedal mode into a guitar amp. So it comes down to whether or not these particular pedal emulations give you what you want when paired with your other gear.

If you're looking only for a distortion pedal, get a good distortion pedal.

But if you need a programmable multi-fx unit and want to use your own guitar amp, then the ME-70 is probably a good option. I'd also compare it to the Digitech RP500 or RP1000; they've really improved over the years and these units are very competitive with the Boss systems. Haven't tried the Line6 M9, but that one is getting good marks too.
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Postby cnev » March 16th, 2010, 10:06 am

Thanks Slej,

That's what I was thinking too. I don't just want distortion but I don't need the alien type stuff either. I have an old Johnson Control box or whatever they called it and I never liked any sound out of it but to be honest I have never tried using it through the effects loop which I may try but the main problem I see with the multi FX is that they do many things OK but nothing really great at least that's been my impression.
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Postby ph0nage » March 16th, 2010, 11:39 am

Hey Cnev,

I'm pretty picky about my distortions too. The other guitarist in my former band had a Visual Sounds Jekyll & Hyde pedal. That might be worth checking out. It has two separate modes on it that you switch on/off - Overdrive and Distortion. You can use these separately or combine them. New they're $150....but i see them for sale used too. I thought it was pretty cool and had a good sound.

I say this because I've never been too fond of distortion and OD on multi effect units. When I'm at home, I have a blackstar HT-5 with a Zoom G2 effects unit plugged into the effect loops. I can't turn individual effects on and off at once, but it is good for hitting presets. It works pretty good since all I really use are reverb, delay, and chorus - which I have as preset 1, 2, and 3 - with 0 being nothing. I don't use the distortion effects though.
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Postby cnev » March 17th, 2010, 5:53 am

phOange,

The other guitar player that I play with has one of those too but I don't think he uses it much. He's built a few distortion pedals that he uses. I'll have to ask him why he doesn't use the Jekyl and Hyde more though.
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Postby slejhamer » March 17th, 2010, 4:45 pm

Cnev, this one sounds impressive, and he's running it into a real amp:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OeSlnvYPYnU

The cheaper RP500 should sound very similar, just with fewer features (like no separate fx loop).
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Postby slejhamer » April 1st, 2010, 6:01 am

So I ended up buying an ME-70 ...

I wanted something to easily save my settings for the various styles we play at church. And there are many. I was spending too much time fiddling knobs.

The tap tempo footswitch with dotted eighth delay was a critical feature for me. To my ears, the overdrives and distortions are quite good. They have improved these over past models. A lot.

The "natural" overdrive is every bit as good as the Boss OD-3 that I recently sold. The "od-1" setting is like a tube-screamer. There's a basic "distortion" setting which is like a DS-1, but better - it's like a DS-1 that has been modded. Then there's a "classic" setting which is very crunchy and Marshally, sounds a LOT like the Crunch Box pedal that I also sold. The metal settings I'm not qualified to comment on, but they don't suck. But I'm playing through a Fender Super Champ; it's not going to sound like a 5150 or Mesa Triple Rectifier no matter what I do. I think a lot of people who say the distortions aren't good just have unrealistic expectations.

The humbucker-to-single-coil effect is wicked! You can really get some decent chimey single coil tones from a humbucker equipped guitar.

And I love the "solo" effect, on the compressor pedal. It's a slighly compressed boost with a bit of mid hump and some grind. I will get much use from this.

The sound through headphones is terrible though. The non-defeatable cabinet emulation really sucks the life out of the tone. And what's worse, when you have something plugged into the line-out jack (again with the cabinet emulation), like for running to a mixer, it also alters the sound of the regular send to the amp. This is stupid implementation. So if you are playing live and want to use your own amp as a stage monitor while running to the PA via the line out, you will have to do some major EQing at the amp to make it sound right. Or, it's back to mic'ing the amp.
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Postby cnev » April 5th, 2010, 6:36 am

My instructor and his son bought the ME-70 and from what he's told me he loves it. He says it gets him every sound he needs.
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