Boss continues to serve up new pedals for the performing songwriter with today’s announcement of two new products- the RC-5 and RC-500. The pedals are the latest iterations in their long-running Loop Station family and offer rhythm patterns, recording capabilities and more.
These new pedal-based loopers represent a new level of Boss technology, featuring class-leading 32-bit AD/DA and 32-bit floating-point processing, onboard rhythms, phrase memories for storing loops, backlit displays, and much more. The single-track RC-5 and dual-track RC-500 both offer 13 hours of stereo recording, plus advanced external control support via footswitches, an expression pedal, or MIDI.
Common features to both units include:
– 57 rhythms—each with A/B variations—to accompany loop adventures.
– Drum kits can be changed to suit the musical style, with 7 kits available in the RC-5 and 16 kits in the RC-500.
– 99 phrase memories in the RC-5 and RC-500 let users store loops as fast they create them, complete with rhythm and kit selections, control assignments, and more.
– Loop audio can be backed up to a computer via USB. And with WAV import via BOSS Tone Studio, the RC-5 and RC-500 can be used as playback hubs for lesson material, jam tracks, or backing music on gigs.
The RC-5 is probably most familiar to gigging musicians, with its familiar Boss housing shape. It features full stereo I/O and the most advanced interface available in any stompbox looper. The LCD’s backlight changes color to indicate recording, overdub, and playback states. And coupled with the multi-function parameter knob, you can navigate rhythms, system settings, and more in the heat of the moment.
According to their press announcement, the RC-5’s pedal switch covers all basic looping functions, but deeper control is supported as well. Users can connect up to two external footswitches for direct control of many assignable functions, or an expression pedal for continuous adjustments. The RC-5 also includes MIDI I/O on space-saving TRS jacks—a first for any compact series pedal—providing even deeper control for players with advanced systems.
The RC-500 is the more advanced of the two and the more adventurous performers will find lots of uses. Users can connect mono/stereo instruments and pedal effects, plus a mic to the dedicated XLR input—complete with phantom power if needed. The RC-500’s two tracks can be used independently for song-style composition, or together for rich multi-track textures. Like the RC-5, the LCD backlight changes color to show the current operation mode, while track faders and a mic level knob provide hands-on access to volume control while performing.
The RC-500’s stereo I/O and three built-in footswitches are configured for basic operations by default, but they can be reassigned in a variety of ways. The RC-500 also offers deep external control support, including MIDI I/O on TRS jacks.
The RC-500 comes with a variety of Loop FX designed to give your backing tracks and performance more life and energy, including repeat, scatter, shift, and vinyl flick. Both the RC-5 and RC-500 also offer a reverse function, perfect for creating unique sonic flavors on demand.
BOSS RC-5 Street Price: $199.99. More info: https://www.boss.info/global/products/rc-5/
BOSS RC-500 Street Price: $349.99. More info: https://www.boss.info/global/products/rc-500/