Why is the Boss ES 8 so expensive?

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by drifterphase, Jan 28, 2015.

  1. drifterphase

    drifterphase Supporting Member

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    This question might sound like the threads that go "there's only $30 worth of parts in an overdrive pedal, why does it cost two hundred bucks!" However, this is not the position I'm taking. I am genuinely curious and would like to know why these switching systems are so expensive. Musicians Friend lists the price for the Boss ES 8 as $699.99. People that know, please educate me! Is the price the result of all the hardware - jacks - in the unit? Are there expensive relays? Is R&D a big deal with something like this? Costly processor chips? I don't understand why these cost so much and would like to learn.

    Thanks!
     
  2. your name here

    your name here Supporting Member

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    They probably just looked at the prices of competing units and figured that they could get away with it. I think it's likely priced too high for most of Boss' demographic... I'd bet most looking to drop that much have probably done a bit of research and would go with MusicomLab, OneControl, GigRig, Cusack, etc.. It seems very late in the game for them to put out a loop switcher, as well.
     
  3. Bobby Wasabi

    Bobby Wasabi Member

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  4. drifterphase

    drifterphase Supporting Member

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    Yeah. I expected the Boss to be substantially less than music com.
     
  5. nateco

    nateco Member

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    I expected this to be like $300

    It's just loops...and the midi/preset stuff is probably not too far off from what they already have in their multi effects.

    If anyone could do it cheap, it would be boss.
     
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  6. gollumsluvslave

    gollumsluvslave Member

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    Until we know the full specs of the boss it's too early to say it's expensive.

    Bear in mind that the Boss has a significant feature over and above any looper / switcher out there, and that is the ability to change the order of any loop per preset!

    The only device I know of that has a similar feature is the Sound Sculpure Switchblade 8F, and that is quite a bit more expensive than the Boss and it needs a midi controller on top of things!:-

    http://www.loopersparadise.de/en/pro.php?p=1201

    I know from the Pre/Post feature on my Mobius how cool that is! Want to have a specific preset with your Compressor after your Drive? You can do that with the Boss, and it's not limited like the Dr ElevenPedal Pallete (which allows 2 loops to be swappable).

    The Boss also outdoes most other switcher loopers in other areas:-

    : 800 presets
    : 8 loops availalable in IA mode! (Musicomlab needs multiple mode switches to navigate IA mode properly)

    What I'm waiting on is information of it's MIDI spec - that is it's make or break for me; if it can handle a comparable number of MIDI devices as the Musicomlab (e.g. 6 PC and additional CC changes) then it's pricing as actually pretty competetive.

    If it's MIDI can handle more than 6 devices, can be configured to do specific things in IA mode (like a MIDI IA Mode / or hybrid Loop /MIDI IA Mode), has an planned Editor (like the old GT-Pro!!), then the Boss is a great deal, and has some compelling features the Musicomlab and others don't have at a similar price point.

    My 2c
    :aok
     
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  7. stinkfoot

    stinkfoot Member

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    Changing the loop order per preset is a cool feature indeed, and could definitely be one of the reasons for the price of the unit. Personally, though, I don't really know how much I'd use it. And it remains to be seen what all that flexibility does to the signal quality - matrix routing like that is dead easy to do in the digital domain, less easy (but still feasible) in the analog/buffered domain, but very hard to do mechanically (for true bypass operation).

    Personally, I'm still looking for a small programmable loop strip with 4 loops/presets (DIP switches to set the presets would suffice). That would allow me to program only the compressor/overdrive/distortion section for 4 main foundation sounds with minimal tap-dancing, while leaving the rest of the chain (the icing on the cake) flexible as normal.
     
  8. S. S. Bender

    S. S. Bender Member

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    Boss/Roland wants to see a return on it's investment, most of which was R&D, and tooling up to produce it. They made a similar type of device many years ago, and ended up blowing them out because they didn't sell. Ibanez made one too in a rack-mount format, and it also tanked. I know this, because I purchased both back in the day during the blow-out sales, and I still lost plenty of money when I sold them later.

    Given the somewhat recent explosion in the popularity of guitar effects, and the apparent increase in players who now desire to layer and
    control them extensively, Boss might have a winner this time out of the gate. On the other hand, patience might be the order of the day. It remains a possibility these things could be $299 on closeout in 15 months or so...

    I agree with stinkfoot, the effects order changing feature is very cool.
     
  9. darkstriker

    darkstriker Member

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    The position changing feature was pretty much what made me shout "WHAT? I NEED THIS NOW!".

    It's the final piece that allows me to swap most of my current pedalboard for a pair of H9s, a Bogner Blue, another dirt box and a couple more one trick pony effects. My reluctance to get into the H9s was always the position of them in the chain.
     
  10. gollumsluvslave

    gollumsluvslave Member

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    That's a great point for people with one or more H9s! Being able to change the order of them offers an insane amount of flexibility!
     
  11. ERGExplorer

    ERGExplorer Member

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    Yeah, the fact that the OP and others completely glossed over this aspect, when a little self-directed reading could have cleared this up for them.

    It probably took the OP more time to write up the starting post of the topic than it would have taken to do a search on the piece of gear and find an answer. That's how I found out about the switchable loop order.
     
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  12. lux_interior

    lux_interior Member

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    Er... that's why we are here - to discuss, inform, express our opinion, ask for information and hopefully receive it in a civil manner. No need to go all forum police on someone & demand to be aware of all specs and features through research prior to posting. Some people don't have the time for that, and this thread also made the Boss unit's difference clear to me instead of having to slowly go through a multi-page thread or Google hunting without even knowing what FX-switchers people consider important and differentiating.

    @stinkfoot: when you say "programmable loop strip", do you mean one that changes the order like the Boss? Or a simpler one like the GLab? Doesn't t for example the GSC3 have that?
     
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2015
  13. JRC4558Dude

    JRC4558Dude Member

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    Seems like the OP's question is pretty clear to me...

    I can understand why something like a Musicom isn't cheap. It's a relatively small builder making something for a niche market.
    On the other hand, BOSS makes pedals for the mass market, who aren't in the habit of dropping $700 on something that is "just" a loop switcher.

    I think the OP's question is totally legit.
     
  14. kiki_90291

    kiki_90291 Member

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    I think the initial question has a flawed underlying assumption - i.e., that the Boss unit "costs more". I think if you look at the market, it's priced pretty well in line with its competitors. I suspect that Boss has more costs associated with development, testing, reliability and manufacturability than the smaller competitors that just can't afford those kind of programs. Those costs are not trivial, so while the manufacturing costs for Boss may be lower (since they presumably have much higher volume), it only pays off if the product is a hit. So they have a lot of up front risk getting the product to market they need to make up quickly.

    In the end, though, the bottom line is that they are pricing at a point they think the market will bear. The decision to make the product is made by looking at the market, what they think they can sell for and then figuring out if they can build it for a low enough cost to make the margins they need to make to get a decent ROI.
     
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  15. mcdyas

    mcdyas Supporting Member

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    Last edited: Jan 28, 2015
  16. gollumsluvslave

    gollumsluvslave Member

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    I'd correct that and say that Boss is a mass-market manufacturer that is dipping their toes into a niche market with a product that has some features that competitors (e.g. Musicomlab, G-Lab, RJM, GigRig etc) do not have, and the pricing is in line with other products in this niche.

    I don't see why just because they are Boss they shouldn't price this product where the market dictates, they have their own investment to recoup after all.

    Would I like to see it be cheaper? Of course! Do I think it's overpriced? Not unless the EFX etc are all overpriced too.
     
  17. gollumsluvslave

    gollumsluvslave Member

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    Ok. Now put both of them in the same chassis, keep the same size, add 2 stereo loops, and the ability to change loop ordering?

    If the Boss can do Parallel, then IMO it is a game-changer, but so far I've only heard loops order can be changed. Parallel routing would be insane, and something i've wanted for ages.
     
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  18. mcdyas

    mcdyas Supporting Member

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    They could probably house them in one chassis and cut $100 off the combined price if they wanted to, I will guess. Changing loop order- eh, could be useful for some. You can have all stereo loops if you want with it.
     
  19. deadlands

    deadlands Member

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    I would definitely spend $120 more to have all the functionality in one unit. Hell, I'd pay $120 more for loop order switching alone.

    I think the Boss unit is priced right. Parts for loop switchers can add up fast. For example, the BYOC Super 8 which doesn't have MIDI, just 8 loops and is programmable is $200 for the kit and you have to build it yourself.
     
  20. chrisjnyc

    chrisjnyc Member

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    Obviously its not the cost of the parts... They are not in the business to break even. I think its prices a bit too high, but thats just me.
     

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