Boss FZ-5 Effects Pedal : Review


A bit too much digital

It should recreate the atmospheres of the '60s and '70s by emulating, thanks to the COSM technology, some legendary pedals, like the Maestro FZ-1A, the Fuzz Face and the Octavia. I said it should, since it doesn't make a good job, i have to say. It is rather digital and unnatural. But we will speak about this later.

Fundamentally, an emulator

Let's see the available controls.


The volume.

Fuzz (Boost)

Obviously, tIt regulates the amount of the effect applied to the original sound. When it is at the center position it provides the maximum distortion of the emulated model. The Boost value, the maximum position, produces a greater distortion.

Boost Mode


With this knob you can choose the emulated model. Let's see them.


The Dallas-Arbiter Fuzz Face with AC128 germanium transistors. It was very famous in the '60s, and was behind the typical psychedelic sound of those years. It has been produced in various models.


The Maestro FZ-1A with 2N2614 germanium transistors. It was characterized by an important boost of the high frequencies.


The Octavia. It adds an octave higher. Obviously, it can be used only playing a note at a time.

Setting samples

Some settings included in the manual.





Octave Solo

Octave Solo

Our opinion

My personal opinion is that it is not a well-made Boss product. If you know, for example, the original version, you will never think that the FZ-5 emulates it like it must be. It is much, much digital. The Maestro FZ-1A emulation is really tinny and the Octavia is too much synthetic. But, there is a but! The Fuzz doesn't work well with an humbucker. Much better with a single-coil and a valid setting, it can work well. So, the synthesis of this review is that this Boss product can deliver a good sound, but only in some contexts. The price, approximately 130 euros, is a bit excessive.

Other reviews

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Guitar Amps

Multitrack Digital Recorders

Handheld Recorders