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Boss SL-20 Slicer Rhythmic Patterns Reference Sheet

vorvick

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
975
Hey All,

I'm creating a reference sheet for the slicer. I contacted Boss directly and they don't have one. This is a draft and will eventually be reformatted. I'm submitting this for feedback, corrections whatever. Please chime in if you're interested in this project.

Settings were as follows:
Direct Signal = Off
Attack = 100%
Duty = 100%

I haven't decided for sure what to do with Pattern 10. Just call it "swing 16ths" or map it out in tied triplets like below.


 
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bennettcab

Member
Messages
204
Hah, this is the only time I can think of that a pedal has made me want to be able to read sheet music.

OR

What are you doing bring music theory into the effects forum?

===============

I appreciate the effort though. Oh well, I guess I'll go back to twisting knobs.
 

vorvick

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
975
Ha! I knew it might be risky. When I'm done it may have a second system that makes the rhythms easier to read.

OR

What are you doing bring music theory into the effects forum?

===============

I appreciate the effort though. Oh well, I guess I'll go back to twisting knobs.
 

tony_crisp

Member
Messages
28
great post. picked up the pedal a couple of months ago and this reference chart has been a real help.

while using the chart as a basic guide i ran through the other banks and didn't find much rhythmic deviation - what changes is the voicing of the effect. meaning bank 1 pattern 1 has the same rhythm as bank 2 pattern 1 but the harmonies (if you want to call them that) are different.

was only going by ear so maybe a midi synced test would yield different results. either way thanks so much this has been a huge help/start.
 

vorvick

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
975
Hey Tony, I've been delinquent in adding more of these, but that's encouraging that there may be some rhythms that are re-used in the arpeggio'd banks. Hope to get back to this soon...
 

the fat one

Senior Member
Messages
1,501
it's my favorite onboard effect on my RC-300 loop station

also, it sounds exactly like the stutter effect you get with the purple Boss flanger's Gate/Pan mode in mono, which was how I always used that flanger (not for "flanging" but "slicing")
 

tony_crisp

Member
Messages
28
Hey Tony, I've been delinquent in adding more of these, but that's encouraging that there may be some rhythms that are re-used in the arpeggio'd banks. Hope to get back to this soon...
yea it might not seem as much of a daunting task mapping 40 more presets knowing that the rhythm patterns aren't changing. i would love even a quick confirmation that this is true. btw that was me that emailed you the other day out of the blue from the website.

@ fatone - that's pretty much all i've been able to confidently coax out of the slicer in live scenarios with a guitar - a stabby tremolo with different harmonic voice or envelope options

there are some cool double-time settings too that arpeggiate well
 

tony_crisp

Member
Messages
28
Been studying the banks and patterns of the Slicer some more, and it seems I was wrong about the patterns being similar throughout different banks. I'm only a sight reader and I wish I could help add to your Pattern Sheet (or an update would be a huge help).

For example bank 2 pattern 1 seems to be quarter notes and 2:4 seems to be eighth notes. 2:3 is something like one-and-two-e-and-and-three and 2:5 is something like one-e-and-uh-three-and-uh. It has been difficult for me to use this pedal by tapping quarter notes for anything other than arpeggios, fingerpicking, and sustained chords.

What I have found, however, is a way to map out the Slicer as different envelope filters based on the sounds produced by tapping in 1/16 notes. For example, everything in bank 4 seems to be based on step-pattern envelopes, similar to the step feature on the boss ph-3 phaser. To me these sound like slot machines. 4:1 is in a lower pitch and 4:2 is slightly higher.

I'm not terribly well-versed in filter terminology but it at least is a start to narrowing down the features of this daunting pedal. Anyway I wanted to share some settings I have found. Most settings are tapped 1/16 notes, but you can try them out with tapped 1/8ths or tapped 1/4 notes and mess with the duty.

Slot Machine/Step Filter - HI
bank 4 pattern 2
attack 9:00 duty 3:00
direct level off
tapped 1/16 notes

Slot Machine/Step filter LO
bank 4 pattern 1
attack 9:00 duty 12:00
DL off
tapped 1/16

Slippery Keyboard/Freestyle Effect
bank 4 pattern 2 (also can use pattern 8 for a lower pitch)
attack 12:00 duty 9:00
DL off
tapped 1/16

Cough/Glitch
bank 3 pattern 7
attack 12:00 duty off
DL off
tapped 1/16

Trem Shudder
bank 3 pattern 10
attack 9:00 duty 9:00
dl off
tapped quarter notes or 1/8

Trem Shadow
bank 3 pattern 3
attack noon duty noon
dl off

Computer Noise
bank 3 pattern 6
attack noon duty noon
dl off
tapped 1/6
sounds good with a modulated delay

Helicopter Trem
bank 3 pattern 5
attack noon duty 9:00
dl off
tapped 1/8 i think

I know it's not much and it's poorly written but so far in a year I've only seriously used two of the settings (1:1 and 5:5) in songs. Personally I'm finding it easier to navigate by trying to look at the banks and patterns in terms of overall sound, not the rhythm produced (hence the 1/8 and 1/16 tapping). Hope this helps anyone wishing to focus more on the undocumented side of this confusing pedal.
 

vorvick

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
975
Thanks Tony, I haven't revisited this for some time so I don't have any updated patterns. When you talk about tapping 16ths, what's it in relation to? Maybe if you could list the approximate beats per minute that would give a frame of reference. Good stuff, I hope to try some of your settings sometime soon!
 
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tony_crisp

Member
Messages
28
What I meant is that if the song I'm playing is technically 50 BPM (quarter notes) I am actually tapping 100 BPM (1/8) or 200 (1/16) BPM on the Slicer.
 

vorvick

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
975
Okay, so in the example above, (1/8 notes) you would be tapping into the pedal w/your foot at 100 bpm - or setting 100 bpm using a midi clock.

Maybe over Christmas break I can get back to these. What I'm trying to do is notate the simplest way possible (in my mind) as a memory-jog for what patterns are available.

I originally contacted Roland about this and found out that the patterns were submitted by a variety of artists - and that they never mapped them.
 

tony_crisp

Member
Messages
28
Okay, so in the example above, (1/8 notes) you would be tapping into the pedal w/your foot at 100 bpm - or setting 100 bpm using a midi clock.

Maybe over Christmas break I can get back to these. What I'm trying to do is notate the simplest way possible (in my mind) as a memory-jog for what patterns are available.

I originally contacted Roland about this and found out that the patterns were submitted by a variety of artists - and that they never mapped them.
I'm not feeding it any MIDI so I'm tapping as fast and accurately as I can by foot. Not pure science by any means. I've been trying every setting by tapping 1/4 notes, 1/8 notes/ and 1/16 notes while increasing/decreasing the duty in 25% increments.

i've been able to establish the beginnings of overall tonal quality of the banks and patterns by tapping faster tempos and keeping the duty between 25 and 50 percent. again, not pure science but it's working for me.

been trying to look on youtube as well for professional examples of how the pedal is used in popular music and haven't found anything much more interesting than omar rodgriguez lopez doing a quick demo in one of his rig rundowns (mars volta, etc). i see/hear it being used a lot of chord swells and single note swells.

edit: another thing i've noticed (maybe obvious) is that it doesn't work like a delay where you can fade your dry signal out while the effect keeps trailing.

Exactly like you said though: it's just a way try to notate in the simplest way possible to establish some sort of order and relationship to the banks and patterns. I've had mine since February and am just now getting into it really.

That's nice to hear you've contacted Roland. That was eventually going to be my next step and I wasn't expecting any concrete info. Did they happen to list any of the artists used?

edit: just glanced over my notes and another strange thing is that in some bank/pattern combinations the duty knob acts almost like the rate knob on a chorus pedal: high settings get really seasick and warbly.
 

vorvick

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
975
Hi Tony - They didn't mention any of the artists that they got the patterns from.
 

Class5

Member
Messages
1,861
I just bought one of these for $149.00 AUD at a sale. What a bargain and such a great song writing tool.
 

jdogric12

Member
Messages
2,506
Zombie thread bump... I bought a used Slicer on Reverb.com and it arrived today. Looking forward to plugging it in tonight!
 




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