Boss ES-8 Effects Switching System

Programmable Effects Switching System with 8 Loops, 800 Patch Memories, Customizable Functions, Switchable Buffers, LCD/LED Displays, and Analog Circuit Design
Boss ES-8 Effects Switching System image 1
Boss ES-8 Effects Switching System image 1
$699.00
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Boss ES-8 Effects Switching System
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A New, Revolutionary Effects Switching System

The BOSS ES-8 is a revolutionary effects switching system that provides you with a host of often-requested features and functions. You have access to eight loops, allowing you to craft elaborate effects chains with unprecedented routing flexibility. The ES-8's onboard memory allows you to store 800 patches, along with external control parameters such as delay time for each patch. And best of all, the ES-8 utilizes an analog circuit to keep your tone clean and pure. If that wasn't enough, you also get switchable buffers, LCD and 7-segment LED displays, and completely customizable pedal function assignments! It goes without saying: the BOSS ES-8 effects switching system is going to become very popular here at Sweetwater!

BOSS ES-8 Effects Switching System Features at a Glance:
  • 8 loops and flexible routing allow you to craft elaborate effects chains
  • 800 patch memories provide unmatched versatility for live musicians
  • Onboard memory for storing external control parameters such as delay time for each patch
  • Completely customizable pedal function assignments
  • Buffers can be switched on/off individually each for input and output and stored in each patch
  • Highly-reliable footswitches with switch-noise mute capability
  • LCD and 7-segment LED display show detailed information at a glance
  • Analog circuit design to protect your pure tone
The BOSS ES-8 effects switching system is every live guitarist's dream come true!

Tech Specs

Number of Footswitch Buttons 8
Inputs 2 x 1/4" (instrument), 1 x 1/4" (tuner in)
Outputs 2 x 1/4" (main out)
Effects Loop 6 x mono loops, 2 x stereo loop returns, 1 x volume loop
MIDI I/O In, Out/Thru
Other I/O 3 x 1/4" TRS (external control), 1 x 1/4" TRS (expression), 2 x 1/4" TRS (control/expression)
True Bypass Switchable buffered or true bypass
Power Source 9.6V DC power supply
Height 2.5"
Width 17.3"
Depth 5.4"
Weight 5 lbs. 9 oz.
Manufacturer Part Number ES-8

Customer Reviews

4.5/5
Based on 16 reviews
Write your review
5/5

Long Live the King!

I seldom write reviews of products I buy, but after reading a few negative comments about the ES-8 I feel the need to set the record straight. Design, execution and build quality of this product is absolutely first rate. It will switch 8 loops manually, 9 loops automatically, and send out midi messages to several devices. Others have mentioned the more well known features of this unit, so I thought I'd point out a few that are less touted. There is a 9th loop that can be moved to any position in the signal chain, however you cannot access it directly from the stomp switches in manual or quick edit mode. I use this for a compressor as I never feel the need to turn it on or off on the fly. The ES-8 has both input and output buffers that are transparent enough to satisfy a guy who designs and builds all his own analog pedals. I keep the input buffer on all the time to drive my signal chain. Normally, I do not feel the need to use the output buffer, but this one allows me to assign an additional 2, 4, or 6 dB boost to the signal; perfect for a lead boost without tying up a loop. I use the ES-8 to change patches on a Strymon Timeline and Big Sky. They do not need to take up loops as I always use them at the end of the signal chain and can bypass them as needed with midi commands. But check this out: the ES-8 has a midi clock function that allows me to program the BPM for each patch. If I am using the same dotted eighth delay on two songs with different tempos I do not need to save it as two Delay patches. This saves time programming my Timeline and allows me to use the memory space for a wider variety of different sounding patches rather than duplicates with different tempos. One warning. The Timeline gets glitchy when I program some patches with the ES-8 clock on and others with it off. This is not the fault of the ES-8, but is a bug in the Timeline. I found a simple workaround, but i find it easier to just make sure to,program the BPM for every patch. One feature lacking in the ES-8 is a USB port. However, the addition of a quality USB to midi converter (I use the Roland UM-One) allows users to upgrade firmware and utilize the ES-8 Windows or Mac based editing software. The PC based editor was the deciding factor in my purchase. While the menus on the ES-8 are logical, quick and easy to use, certain functions such as naming patches and managing the library of up to 800 of them are best accomplished with the editor. In the Librarian mode you can see all of your patches on a matrix and move them around as needed for a set. I leave the first 10 banks open to program for a set, one bank per song. Patches for a song are stored in memory starting in bank 99 and working downward. A song with four patches may be in bank 94 slots 5 - 8. With the editor you can select all four patches at once and copy them to bank 2 slots 1-4 ( as the second song in the set - I leave bank 0 unprogrammed). I have almost 100 songs stored in memory and have not used even half of it. As the "songs" in "permanent" storage are not in any particular order I use a spreadsheet to make them easy to locate. The USB/midi interface is slow to load and transfer patch data, but it works flawlessly every time. I would like to see song and set storage features built into the ES-8. This is a feature found in the most expensive switchers, however the ES-8 has features that are not found on even the priciest competitors. Considering the low price, transparent sound, noiseless switching and high build quality, the ES-8 earns the crown as "King of the Loop Switchers" with ease.
5/5

Boss ES-8

Boss just made playing easier ! No more tap dancing from my drive my swells. Love it!
Music background: Electric guitar player for praise band
5/5

Amazing!

Amazing utility for anyone who does not want to tap dance with their pedal board. The es-8 can do so much to make your life easier. The midi function to select presets on other pedals in the loops or not is great. I can change my amps channels, turn on and off multiple pedals with carry over, and change presets on pedals all with one click of a button. For the price and what you can do with the es-8 it is a necessity to have this on my pedal board. Now if it could just make me a sandwich.
5/5

No Sacrifice

I have tried several multi effect unit, Fractal included. There is absolutely no replacement for tubes and analog overdrive pedals for people like myself. The ES-8 is amazing! I get the flexibility that I need and I get to keep my stompboxes. Being able to set up custom presets is cool, but having the ability to push my Klon into my OCD or place my TC Spark in from of or behind any pedal on my board is unbelievable. And...I don't have to physically move pedals! I can turn buffers off and on and the tone is amazing. If you are reading this and have a pedalboard.....buy this switcher. It ends all of the struggles associated with stompbox placement. Fuzz placement....not a problem for the ES-8. I'm glad I don't have to give up my pedals to gain flexibility! If you have stompboxes you love, the ES-8 will put a huge smile on your face. I highly recommend this product. The only thing I would change is possibly adding 4 more loops. Now that I have this, I want to throw even more vintage pedals on my board....ES-12 ???? Thank You Matt Kreager.! Best SE ever!
5/5

Simply awesome switcher!

This thing is an absolute beast of a device. I spent the last 3 months researching a switching platform that would handle the simple task of changing my amp channel and turning effects on/off at the same time. I was set on the Boss Es-5 for awhile, but as I approached purchase time, I started to realize that I would probably want the expanded loop count and feature set of the ES-8. I'm glad I went for it. This thing is awesome. After wiring everything up, I was editing patches within 2 minutes. Saving patches within 5, and changing effects order in another 5. The manual is still in the plastic bag; its just that easy to get those basic functions working. I'm sure I'll break out the manual when I start getting into controlling a drum machine through the midi out and other more advanced configurations. I'd also recommend for anyone having trouble with setting this up to watch a walkthrough video series by youtuber EytschPi42. He did a 10 part series on everything this unit can do in great detail (videos over 30 minutes long). The Boss Es-8 is exactly what I've been wanting for quite some time. I thought i'd have to shell out twice the cash to get all the features, but Boss knocked it out of the park and I couldn't be happier with this.
Music background: Gigging Musician, Studio Engineer

Sweetwater Advice

Boss ES-8 Effects Switching System

There are many switchers on the market, but outside of custom-built units that cost thousands more than the ES-8's $699 street, you'd be hard pressed to get this level of control over your entire rig at this appealing price....
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See also: Footswitches, Boss, Boss Pedal & Effects Accessories, Boss Footswitch / Selector Pedals