Boss RC-50 Looper : Review

RC-50

Three simultaneous stereo phrase channels

Each one can include many different phrases and is equipped with a dedicated footswitch. Obviously, we are speaking about an advanced machine. It can build a very complex loop, a sort of arrangement.

99 patches and 49 minutes

It can store up to 49 minutes of audio (in Mono), and organizes all the material in 99 patches that can be edited in real-time. If we consider the target of this product, the advanced user, the memory capacity is a weak point of this Boss device.

The synchronization doesn't work

This looper has really many interesting and useful functions. For example, it can be locked to an external MIDI source, so to synchronize the active patch with all the devices connected to the MIDI source. Unfortunately, at the moment, the synchronization doesn't work perfectly. There are too many problems that have not been corrected by Boss, at least for the moment. The Japanese company has released a new firmware, but the problems persist and someone says that there could be an error in the MIDI implementation. Now the question is: this is a software problem or hardware? If it is a software bug, it will be surely solved. If the problem is hardware, this means that the RC-50 has an important limit that, above all, cannot be solved.

Front Panel

The quantization

The Loop Quantize is always a very useful function. It allows a perfect recording, without imperfections, and with the help of an automatic system that deletes the excess parts. The creation of a loop is a fast and easy operation.

The Rhythm Guide

It exists in many products of this type on the market, but the rhythm guide of the RC-50 is really incomparable. It is equipped with 379 patterns, with real sampled drums, and a large amount of Time Signatures. I have to say that it is really extraordinary. It provides many different options for all possible genres and styles. Certainly, this function is one of the main added values of this device. It cannot disappoint.

All the possible connections

The rear panel is really complete and with the necessary to connect the machine to everything, substantially. A remarkable flexibility is another important characteristic of this Boss product. The microphonic input features the Phantom Power and a dedicated knob for the volume, so the user can connect also a condenser microphone. Obviously, there are also a dedicated input for an instrument and the Aux In for an external audio source, for example a CD or an MP3 player, both with a specific control for the volume. On the front panel we can see a led for the peak of the signal. It is useful to avoid distortions during the recording or the playback of an external source.

The USB

It allows a fast and easy connection to a PC or a MAC. This device doesn't own an extraordinary capacity of the memory, therefore we understand how this function can turn out very useful.

Final opinion

Well, it provides tons of useful functions and is, surely, an excellent product, but the sync problem is important and limitative. It makes difficult the use of the RC-50 in a live context. The price could be good if everything was fully operational, but for the moment Boss hasn't solved the problem and so my opinion is that the price is excessive.

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