In this first part of the review, you will learn more about the design and some sounds of the Boss DD-200. The second part will be about some special algorithms.
The 200 series has a new pedal format that is about as wide as a DD-8 with angled plugs connected.
On the pedalboard, the DD-200 only needs a little more space than a compact pedal. The beveled enclosure is lacquered in mother of pearls. Because of the shape, the switches for on/off and memory/tap can be tapped easily. Above the two switches you will find LED stripes.
Two jacks for input and also two output jacks are situated at the front of the enclosure, as well as a CTL/EXP input and a power supply jack (the pedal needs 225mA). The CTL/EXP input allows to connect an expression pedal or several switches that can assume various functions.
Alongside the pedal offers midi in and out for 3.5mm TRS jack and a USB input for updates. Via midi you can save and select additional presets. And furthermore, all parameters can be adjusted via CC.
A battery compartment for three AA batteries is situated at the bottom of the pedal.
Next to the small display is an infinite pot for time and the pots for feedback, level, parameter, tone and mod depth. The display shows the adjusted milliseconds or the bpm.
A further pot allows to choose between 12 types of effects. Two small switches adjust the tap divisions or switch between the internal presets. By pressing the two switches you can activate the main menu and have a look at the acronyms of all adjustable parameters on the display.
To activate the looper mode, you have to keep both footswitches pressed. Now, you can finetune several parameters. Besides the activation of the trails, you can also adjust the options for midi sync and control change, as well as the functions of the footswitch (tap tempo, hold, twist etc.).
Everything is built up in the robust Boss way, we already know and love. The switches have a soft pressure point and the high-quality pots feel stable and have a nice taper.
The standard delay, a digital delay sound has a nice, clear and percussive character. Using the DD-200 while playing with the band, I set the tone pot to 3 o’clock to cut the low end and push the treble.
Although it is a digital delay, it does not sound sterile. In this algorithm, the parameter-pot controls the attack. Turning the pot into a clockwise direction, the percussive character will vanish and the repeats become more pleasant.
The depth of the modulation of all effect-types can be adjusted via the Mod Depth pot, but the speed can not be changed at all. Actually, the factory setting of the speed is well done, so you will get a nice modulation that also extends the stereo image.
I really like the analog mode of the DD-200. The parameter pot adds some overdrive to the signal. By maxing the tone pot you will get a sound that reminds of the bright mode of the MXR Carbon Copy. Turned into full counter clockwise direction, the sound rather reminds of the DOD Rubberneck.
The delays build up in a beautiful way by extending the feedback time which also cuts the low end and the treble. Thereby, they create some room in the frequency image and produce a nice sound scape as well.
For this pedal is stereo, this setting is also recommendable to add some liveliness to the sound of synthesizers.
The modulation of the analog mode is also very nice and you will get a nice analog sounding drifting.
The tape mode is oriented to the legendary Roland RE-201. And I guess, Boss also added the house-made sound of the RE-20.
In this mode, the parameter pot controls the number and combination of the tone heads. From a 12 o’clock adjustment, the settings appear again and again but the signal will be driven into saturation slightly.
By adding some modulation, a three-dimensional RE-201 sound can be created. The tone pot also allows a further fine-tuning if desired.
Regarding the drum sound, which is oriented to the Binson Echorec 2, the parameter pot also controls the tone heads and the overdrive. A special thing about this mode is the ALL option that, according to the original, emulates the virtual pressing of all tone head-pots.
The drum sound is pretty authentic and brighter/more percussive than the tape mode. In this mode also, its fun to play rhythmical delays with a little modulation added.
Shimmer is self-explanatory. A signal that is take up the octave is added to the delay. The brilliance of this signal can be controlled via the parameter pot. A nice fact is, that the shimmer effect provides a slightly extended attack what means, that it will not be produced right while you pluck the string. It fades in slowly. The modulation will take you into different spheres and I promise, I heard some angels sing 😉
Click here for a demo video of the BOSS DD-200.