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Re: Boss DD-20 review

At 09:01 AM 5/18/2005, RobotFan@aol.com wrote:

>If it makes you feel any better, I went through buyer's remorse with my 
>DD-20 too. I almost sold it on eBay.
>However, after a couple of weeks now, I'm glad I have it and won't part 
>with it. It takes some getting used to, no doubt there.
>Keep plugging away at it.

Thanks Carl, trying my best here.  I think part of my frustration comes 
from a bit of the "I want the same thing, only different" syndrome.  I'm 
used to working with the SOS in products like the Line 6 modelers, and 
admittedly the Roland does not have that particular model as one of its 
strengths.  Rather, I'm trying to get used to setting an interval and then 
layering to those time constraints, as opposed to just pressing a switch 
the end of a phrase and going into "play/overdub" mode.  Douglas' tips on 
using ping-pong mode have helped quite a bit so far, but it's still rough 

I've had one or two tiny revelations over the past few days which have 
helped.  First, I'm really used to working in BPM, as opposed to straight 
milliseconds, so overwriting all the memories with that time measurement 
has helped.

Second, I made a little discovery using the optional FS-5U footswitch last 
night.  There are three modes by which the external footswitch can 
one of which is to duplicate the on/off functionality of the first 
footswitch.  For all other modes but this one -- i.e. tap tempo, memory 
selection -- the FS-5U (unlatching) is recommended.  For external on/off 
control, Roland recommends instead the FS-5L (the latching version of the 
same footswitch).

Being the mad-scientist-type I am, though, I tried using the unlatched 
FS-5U with the on/off mode, and it does indeed work.  The advantage here 
that the DD-20 only accepts input while your foot is on the pedal.  Lift 
your foot, and it stops.  So, you can play a sustained note or chord, then 
tap morse-code type rhythms into the delay, much like the trigger-gates 
used in a lot of electronica.  Neat!

Also, you can reverse the polarity of the pedal with the flick of a 
switch.  Then, you can have everything you play fed into the delay (don't 
worry the normal on/off switch on the pedal still functions normally at 
same time, so you could turn it off entirely).  In that mode, the audio 
stream will be *interrupted* any time you press the pedal, so you can clip 
out little bits of silence as you record.

I think I saw somebody else post something about creative uses for those 
external FS-5x pedals (ted maybe? couldn't find anything in the archives, 
grrrr), so perhaps they've done some more work with the external 
footswitches than just my little explorations...


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