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BOSS RV-5 opinions

Grainslayer

Senior Member
Messages
1,027
Well,I wanted a reverb pedal..i just got home with an impulse buy..yup,a boss rv-5.Looks brand new and picked it up for 80 bucks.(200 plus tax for a new one here in canada).i researched first to see what was available.I was intrested an EHX holy grail neo.Simple,reasonably priced and sounded good in the YouTube demos but figured I'd buy this and give it a go..I haven't even plugged it in yet.i figured I'd compare opinions with my own..

- hopefully it even works.haha...I didn't get to test it out before I bought it.
 
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Bman20

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
1,440
For the modulated sound its pretty good, for regular always on subtle verb i always found it added alot of highs. Theres a tone control tho so u can dial some of it out
 

Grainslayer

Senior Member
Messages
1,027
Well,first day impressions...I should have waited and tried out a few in store..I was hoping it would sound better than the you tube demos...not really liking it so far..bummer.
 
Messages
419
Hi,

I've had 2 of these and sold both. The longer reverb settings (to me) sound extremely fake in their decays, almost like a delay is repeating the first part of the tail. The spring reverb does the 'drip' sound but it sounds like the same sample is continuously activated by volume spikes in your playing and so it gets very annoying, fast! All the reverbs sound way too bright and without dialing the tone right back are next to useless. The modulation setting is ok, if ambient is your thing, but even this effect must have its level fairly high to be realy audible and again, it gets old, fast. The good thing is that this pedal does create a nice stereo image if you are recording / using 2 amps. All of this is IMHO of course. I use a Hardwire Supernatural or a Strymon Big Sky these days.

Peace,

Rob.
 

topo morto

Member
Messages
1,574
The RV-5 it gets plenty of criticism, but also quite a lot of love. To be honest, I've never really been able to completely understand the love! The modulated setting is the only one that has any redeeming features. The other settings sound bright, ringy, and generally tick most of the boxes in the 'what does a bad reverb sound like?' checklist IMO.

According to bossarea.com the RV5 was released in 2002. I guess BOSS and Roland made better-sounding reverbs in rack form a long time before that; for sure, a lot of other companies did. Even the modulated setting is really nothing that couldn't be done on rack units many years before the RV5 was released. It may be that at the time in (2002) it was decent for a pedal though.

Move forward to 2015 and things have moved on a long way in DSP technology, and for me the RV-5 must be one of the worst value pedals on the market - new or used - when you consider price/performance ratio. I guess the fact that it's still the latest Boss reverb props it up in the eyes of some, but even then there are those who say that the RV-3 (from 1994) sounds better.

The existence of pedals like the RV-5 is exactly why I don't personally think Boss is such a great company. Yes, they have made innovative products in the past and still do so occasionally, but then they are also content to rest on their laurels and charge people who trust the Boss name $150 new for something as outdated as the RV-5.

Anyway sorry for rant. TL-DR : Yes on the RV5 if the modulate setting is exactly what you want. Maybe on the RV-5 if you want a good ambient reverb, but there are a few good alternatives to check out. No in almost any other situation. All IME/IMO.
 
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minty901

Member
Messages
2,124
Modulate mode is heavenly though. TC Electronic or Digitech can't touch it. Can't even get close to the beautiful aura of RV-5's modulate. The only thing that can beat it, in my opinion, is the Strymon Big Sky's cloud mode. But it's got to be a sound you're looking for. If it's not, then don't get an RV-5. FWIW I think the Digitech reverbs are just as ringy/piercing as the RV-5 or even moreso. I can't have the effect level above 11:00 on the Supernatural or Polara without the bright reflections piercing my eardrums. TC Electronic HOF for smooth, pleasant reverb and RV-5 for heavenly modulate. That combination covers most of my needs, leaving the Neunaber and Strymon pedals as the only ones I'm even slightly lusting after.
 

topo morto

Member
Messages
1,574
The EQD Dispatch Master also has a great long reverb with (what sounds to me like) subtle modulation, and with a delay that blends beautifully with it. Maybe worth checking out if you were interested in the RV5 just for the mod mode, though it's not the same sound by any means.
 

vpich

Member
Messages
102
I keep wanting to upgrade my rv-5 but i play it and the feeling passes. Love the modulate setting. Was going to get a supermoon but after listening to this video with headphones it disn't seem like there was enough difference to justify it over other gas items. Sure, it's a little better but pretty damn close.

I also really like the hall setting and the plate can be nice. The spring sucks.
 

minty901

Member
Messages
2,124
I keep wanting to upgrade my rv-5 but i play it and the feeling passes. Love the modulate setting. Was going to get a supermoon but after listening to this video with headphones it disn't seem like there was enough difference to justify it over other gas items. Sure, it's a little better but pretty damn close.

I also really like the hall setting and the plate can be nice. The spring sucks.
Boss slays the Supermoon in that video. Brighter and more heavenly. I love that the RV-5 modulation doesn't sway, it's just like a heavenly chorus of singers, rather than a vibey warble like all other modulated reverbs seem to be.

edit: actually, scratch that, the second comparison he does the Supermoon is a lot closer to the RV-5 sound. Very similar.
 
Messages
6,881
Well,first day impressions...I should have waited and tried out a few in store..I was hoping it would sound better than the you tube demos...not really liking it so far..bummer.
Don't feel bad, and don't feel pressured to like it. I've sold 3 of them. :lol: Comparison vids can be misleading since it's not you playing, and it's not your gear being played through.

Lately, I've been liking the old Boss RRV-10. It's a half rack unit that has similar guts to the RV-2, but I think the plate sounds smoother and less digital. cheap too.
 




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