A follow-up to the GT-10 multi-effects and amp modeling pedalboard, the new GT-100 offers over 40 kinds of effects and 25 amp models. A cool new feature here is an Accel pedal that can toggle or momentarily engage seven radical effects with names like Twist, Warp, and Laser, which are effective for adding a dash of “wow” to a solo. It also functions as a user-assignable control pedal, capable of controlling up to nine parameters at a time. In addition, there’s an A/B Channel Divide function that assigns different amps and effects to separate channels whose relative levels can be determined either by picking dynamics or by frequency, like a P.A. crossover system.
Booting up the GT-100 through an amp, I noted all the presets included amplifier models, which Boss calls “preamps.” I wished I could globally shut them off to check out the unit as strictly an effects processor, but I had to program one set of patches for playing through an amp and another for direct. Fortunately, with 200 user slots, there is plenty of patch real estate, and the unique dual LCD screen system made programming easy. I merely pushed the Effect button and the left screen revealed the complete signal chain. The four knobs below let me switch an effect or amp on or off, select its type, and/or move it to a different place in the chain. The screen on the right showed the parameters of the chosen amp or effect and its four knobs adjusted them–all of this with a minimum of page scrolling.
The classic Boss tones (OD-1, Metal Zone, Chorus, Delay, Slicer, etc.) are in evidence, and the COSM modeling captures the essence of non-Boss pedals (Rat, Tube Screamer, Whammy, etc.) as well. Whether plugged into an interface from the audio outs, or used as one via its USB port, the GT-100’s essential amplifier models (Marshall, Fender, Vox, JC-120, Boogie) closely approximated all the appropriate flavors. One thing COSM modeling does extremely well is making the amps feel right. Setting up a T-Scream, Rat, or Guy DS overdrive through a Clean Twin amp–Boss isn’t subtle about referencing the modeled hardware–I happily lost hours jamming through my computer.
Though it’s easy to dive into the GT-100, the unit is ultimately deep, with many routing options for switches, knobs, pedals, and MIDI control. It also has the kind of cool goodies that make gigging life easier–like an effects send and return that can be placed anywhere in the chain, and Global EQ and Reverb Percentage for adjusting the tone and wetness to a room without having to reprogram the patches. Manual mode turns six of the switches into on/off controls for individual effects, and an easy-to-use phrase looper can be placed pre or post effects.
Maybe it is because we have heard the Boss sound on so many records, but playing through the GT-100, whether through the computer or the amp, sounded like a finished, mastered recording. If you find that kind of polish attractive, this may well be the effects/amp modeler for you.