What are guitar effects pedals? Well, guitar effects pedals, sometimes also called simply as effects pedals, effects units, and stomp boxes, are small and compact electronic units able to alter the sound of your guitar in a specific way. Guitar effects pedals are usually designed to be put on the floor in front of you so that you can easily switch them on and off using your feet – hence the name. Today, guitar effects pedals have become much more advanced than before. A unit can feature hundreds of effects, allowing you to shape your guitar’s sound in any way you want.
If you have been in the market for some time, you may have noticed that Boss and Zoom products are dominating the market. Many people consider that Boss and Zoom pedals are good. Below, we are going to discuss about the comparisons between Boss GT-1 and Zoom G3Xn, which are currently very popular and have made many guitarists confused choosing between them. Should you get Boss GT-1 or Zoom G3Xn?
Boss GT-1 vs. Zoom G3Xn: Design and Dimensions
Boss GT-1 looks very cool and stylish. It has a very intuitive design, featuring a large expression pedal on the right, as always, three footswitches, a row of function and control buttons under the backlit display screen, and three control knobs. Interestingly, the footswitches are surrounded by indicator lights, which are a great help when playing in a dark environment. You will be able to easily find the footswitches even when playing on an outdoor stage at night. The housing is solid and durable. (Read also : Boss GT-1 Vs GT-100)
On the other hand, Zoom G3Xn sports a very professional look. It is certainly not as colorful; there are three LED lights on the top of the upper footswitches, but they are not exactly a reliable light source for playing outside at night. However, the build quality seems to be somewhat higher. You can feel that the expression pedal and footswitches are very sturdy. The unit has six footswitches that are put in two rows. The ones on the lower row look more like mini pedals. But the most distinctive feature is the three separate display screens with dedicated controls, which allow you to control multiple effects settings at once.
Before we proceed, let’s see first the dimensions of these two fancy metal boxes. Between the two, Boss GT-1 is the more compact and lightweight one. It measures by 305 mm x 152 mm x 74 mm, and it has a weight of about 1.3 kg. On the other end of the line, Zoom G3Xn is 318 mm wide, 181 mm deep, and 64 mm tall, with a weight of about 1.84 kg. As you can see, the differences are not very significant. Both are still reasonably portable, and you can easily bring them to gigs. But someone may have particular considerations regarding the dimensions.
Boss GT-1 vs. Zoom G3Xn: Features
As mentioned above, Zoom G3Xn comes with three separate screens that allow you to control three effects at once. Such incredible flexibility is very useful especially in live situations. Boss GT-1 is certainly usable, but it just doesn’t give that level of flexibility.
Both models have an AUX input which enables you to plug a portable music player and jam along to your music. Both also have a USB port with interface capabilities, allowing you to connect directly to a PC for recording. However, Boss GT-1 comes with the CTL2,3/EXP2 jack, which you can use to connect an external footswitch or expression pedal. Zoom G3Xn does not have that jack, but this is not a big deal because it already has more on-board footswitches to control three effects at once.
Boss GT-1 comes with a built-in phrase looper that can record for up to 32 seconds. There is no built-in rhythm pattern or drum machine. However, Zoom G3Xn boasts a built-in phrase looper that can record for up to 80 seconds. In addition, it features a built-in drum machine with 68 rhythm patterns, which can be used in conjunction with the phrase looper. The features are very useful for practicing. Many people favor the Zoom pedal over the Boss pedal because of this reason, though not all people prefer to practice with drums.
Boss GT-1 vs. Zoom G3Xn: Powering
Another thing that you may need to consider is the powering methods of the guitar effects pedal. Usually, a guitar effects pedal can be powered through three ways. It can be powered by an AC adaptor, a USB connection, or batteries. Using an AC adaptor requires a power outlet. Powering via a USB connection can be very practical if you use it with a PC. Batteries have a limited life time, but are practical and useful when there is no power outlet available.
Boss GT-1 can be powered by four AA alkaline batteries. You can also use an AC adaptor, but it is sold separately. On the other hand, Zoom G3Xn can only be powered by the included AC adaptor. (See also : Zoom G3X Vs G3Xn)
Boss GT-1 vs. Zoom G3Xn: Effects
Boss GT-1 comes with a total of 108 effects, and it has 99 memory locations for user patches in addition to the 99 included presets. On the other hand, Zoom G3Xn comes with 80 effects consisting of 70 DSP effects, 5 amp models, and 5 cabinet models. You can store up to 150 patches there.
In general, both models have great effects quality. Boss generally has better cleans and low/medium gain tones. Whammy and pitch-shifting effects are also good. On the contrary, Zoom has better hi-gain tones that sound more convincing.
|Boss GT-1||Zoom G3Xn|
|Key features||- Flagship-class BOSS sound engine squeezed into a light and compact floor unit Modern design with no hard edges enables safe transport in a guitar bagEasy Select and Easy Edit functions for quickly choosing and tweaking patchesFour AA batteries provide up to seven hours of playing time for busking and mobile gigsOnboard control switch and expression pedal; footswitch/expression pedal jack and USBDownload ready-to-play pro patches for free at BOSS Tone Central||- 70 onboard high-quality digital effects (68 effects, 1 looper pedal, and 1 rhythm pedal), including distortion, overdrive, EQ, compression, delay, reverb, flanging, phasing, and chorusing - 5 amp emulators, 5 cabinet emulators, and 75 custom-designed factory patches - Use up to 7 effects/amps/cabinets simultaneously, chained together in any order - Stereo/mono looper allows recording of up to 80 seconds of phrase recording|
|Customer Ratings*||4.1 out of 5 stars||5.0 out of 5 stars|
|Best Deal*||Save Money Please click here||Save Money Please click here|
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Boss GT-1 is great if you prefer the better cleans, low/medium gain tones, or whammy and pitch-shifting effects. The ability to work on batteries may also be a reason to choose the model. However, if those advantages are not what you need, you should choose Zoom G3Xn. It has a better overall value for the money; the flexible control is certainly useful in any situation, and it has a better looper with built-in rhythm patterns.