Boss DC-2 Dimension C

DC2 Dimension C (Boss)

This unit has been sold from 1985 to 1989: it’s not really easy to get one, however you can still find them around, but usually not at a bargain price. It’s an analog chorus with 4 presets, and stereo output: this means you simply can’t tweak the sound, but the presets are good in my opinion, perfect for acoustic guitar, just don’t expect anything too extreme.

Inside you’ll find 2 NE570N companders (probably used for noise reduction), 2 MN3207 1024-stages BBDs and 2 MN3102 chips.

Specifications:

- Residual Noise Level: -95 dBm (IHF-A)

- Recommended Load Impedance: 10 kOhm or greater

- Current Draw: 30 mA (DC 9V)

- Input Impedance: 1 Mohm

You can find plenty of samples on modezero site:

DC-2 Samples page, on modezero

Schematics can be found here

DC-2 circuit on Schematic Heaven site

Boss NS-2 Noise Suppressor

NS-2 Noise Suppressor (Boss)

This is the successor to the NF-1 Noise Gate and has been sold since 1987.

There are 2 controls “Threshold” and “Decay” and a Reduction/Mute switch: the controls have the same functions as “Sens” and “Decay” on the NF-1. The first one sets the level for the circuit to start working, the second sets the time needed to start after last note. The switch is used to select between two modes: in “Reduction” mode the expander circuit works when the music signal goes under the threshold. In “Mute” mode the noise reduction is always on and when the signal goes under the threshold there is a complete cut-off.

Two important additions are a LED showing if noise reduction or mute is on, depending on mode, and a couple of send / return jacks. Last but not least, there is a DC out: with a power supply and a cable you can use it to power other effects.

NS-2 Noise Suppressor (Boss) Box (italian version)

Specifications:

Input Impedance: 1 MOhm

Output Impedance: 10 kOhms or higher

Equivalent Input Noise Level: -110 dBu or less (IHF-A)

Current Draw: 20 mA

NS-2 on Boss USA site Not much detail here…

NS-2 on Boss Japan site (in english) with manual and some info

Boss PQ-4 Parametric Equalizer

PQ-4 Parametric Equalizer (Boss)

This unit has been produced from 1991 to 1997, and it’s not really easy to find an used one. In my opinion the PQ4 is much better than its graphic counterparts (like the GE6 and GE7 from Boss, and other graphic equalizers) because of its flexibility. However, the PQ4 is something that requires a fine tuning to get your sound, and it isn’t a pedal suited to quick-and-dirty settings change: more like a sniper rifle than a shotgun. Concentric knobs don’t help, either.

Specifications:

Residual Noise Level: < -98dBm (IHF-A)

Input Impedance: 1 Mohm

Output Impedance: 1 kohm

Current Draw: 23mA

Recommended Load Impedance: > 10kOhm

Resources

Parametric EQ on wikipedia

Boss PH-1R Phaser

PH-1R Phaser (Boss)

This one, and its predecessor PH-1, may be considered classic phasers (the same can be said for old MXR units, too). It has been sold from 1980 to 1985: by the end of 1984 Boss started selling the PH2.

The PH-1R has a 3rd control labeled “RES” for “resonance” in addition to “Rate” and “Depth”, featured on the PH1 too.

As you may nave noticed, the unit in this photo is a little bit battered but still works like new :)

Resources

A sample video from youtube

A nice description and samples with synth on Slowburn site

PH1r’s page on DiscoFreq FX site

Boss CE-2 Chorus

CE-2 Chorus (Boss)

This is the first Boss “compact” chorus pedal, because its predecessor (the CE-1) used a much larger gray box. Settings are straightforward: “Rate” for speed and “Depth” for effect level.

Sound is somewhat a classic, and lots of people prefers this to later models from the same manifacturer like the CE-3, CH-1 or CH-5, and even to any other chorus around.

There are different versions of the circuit, all of them using the MN3007 BBD chip. Moreover, there are both Japan-made and Taiwan-made effects: while some people says that the Japanese one sounds better, I must say that I’ve tried them both and couldn’t find any relevant difference in listening.

The unit has been sold from 1979 to the eighties: in the photo, you can see my slightly used old japanese one :)

Specifications:

- S/N Ratio: 90dB or better

- Input Impedance: 470 kOhm

- Recommended Load Impedance: 10 kOhm or higher

- Current Draw: 9 mA

Resources:

CE-2 Page on Boss USA site

CE-2 Schematic (and lots more) on Schematic Heaven website

CE-2 Schematic on Free Info Society site

CE-2 On Michele Cricco’s Blog with photos and samples (in Italian language)

CE-2 : a couple of great photos on Mode Zero site

Want to build a CE-2 style chorus? Check Tonepad site

Artists using the CE-2 on Guitar Geek site

Samples on Tonefrenzy

A nice test on YouTube

An interesting comparison between the Japanese and Taiwanese versions

Boss CS-1 Compressor

CS-1 Compression Sustainer (Boss)

This is the first compressor from BOSS: it has 3 controls, two knobs for level and sustain and a normal/treble switch, which is somewhat unusual from this manifacturer. I think that the only other Boss compact pedal which has a switch like this is the TW1 (T-Wah or Touch Wah).

This unit has been sold from 1978 to 1982, later Boss has made the CS-2 and CS-3. There’s a considerable difference in sound between the CS-1 and its siblings from the same company: this is due to the use of a photocoupler, which has been replaced by a more conventional VCA circuitry in later models. The CS-1 is supposed to have a tighter compression than CS-2 and 3. The pedal in the photo has some wear but still works like a champ.

Samples coming real soon

Schematics from Kurt Godiksen great site.