Boss MS3 Multi-fx switcher

After my eventual disappointment with the Hotone Xtomps ‘digital noise problems, I sought an alternative to satisfy my need for a powerfull but ultra-compact pedalboard.

Some research threw up the Boss MS3 unit. I know and like Boss fx already and have been hugely impressed by the sounds I can get out of my little Katana Air portable/practice amp, so I took the plunge.

Having now rehersaed, jammed and gigged it, I can say the MS3 is a terrific product. Possibly the best piece of guitar gear I’ve ever bought.  It combines many, many fx with three external analogue loops, a tune, expresion pedal control and even amp switching in a very compact box.

I have mounted it on my Pedaltrain Nano + board with my Hotone mini Volume/Wah pedal in loop 1 and my Lekato looper.  Loop 3 is reserved for when I connect an amp using the four-cable method so I can put drives before the preamp and the mod fx in the amp’s loop.  This leaves loop 2 free for cloning any visiting pedals.

All of this works seamlessly, is easy to programme (especially with Boss’ desktop editor software), has very low noise and sounds great.

I prefer to power it with a rechargeable battery pack so I can set up on stage in seconds.  I used to use a Palmer Batpack 8000 which was good and lasted for hours but it began to refuse charge.

(Palmer ‘customer service’ were quite useless apart from being very clear it was out of warranty / no longer supported / and I must make sure it was recycled correctly.  Thanks but no thanks, fellas).

I now have a new rechargeable supply from Thomann which was half the price, smaller and lighter and lasts almost as long…

(My 633 amps have 9v power in their channel switching pedals which can also power pedals so when I walk onstage, switching the amp on also activates the pedalboard.  Very cool.)