BOSS Intros RC-505 mkII, RC-600 Loop Station Loopers

BOSS has officially announced two new Loop Station loopers, the RC-505mkII and RC-600.

BOSS says that “the RC-505mkII retains everything that made the original so loved and adds a wealth of new features to make the looping experience even more creative and free flowing”.

Each of the RC-505mkII’s five stereo tracks now includes customizable FX and Track buttons, making it easier to color and control loops in the heat of the moment. Users can set up various parameters and trigger them with a press, hold, or double-click. Pressing the Undo/Redo button reveals a secondary layer to double the control options.

Two external control jacks are also available for connecting footswitches or expression pedals, and each has its own dedicated set of parameters. And with the Assign function, users can set up 16 additional targets for hardware control and MIDI operation.

The RC-505mkII also provides a greatly expanded FX palette to process sounds during recording and playback. There are 49 Input FX and 53 Track FX types to choose from—including new vocal harmony effects—and it’s possible to use up to four in each section at once. Groups of four Input FX and Track FX can be stored in four banks for quick recall, and a step sequence function is available in some FX to create dynamic real-time movement.

The RC-505mkII’s expanded connectivity and onboard audio processing allow performers to do more with less external gear. There are two XLR mic inputs and two mono/stereo line input pairs, plus an input mixer with two mic compressors and independent channel EQs. Three stereo output pairs, a headphones output, and an output mixer are also available, complete with assignable routing options and master reverb and compressor effects. In addition, the RC-505mkII’s panel faders have longer throw for more precise adjustments and rigid construction for a more solid feel.

Features:

  • 32-bit AD/DA and 32-bit floating-point processing
  • Five simultaneous stereo phrase tracks with dedicated controls and independent volume faders
  • Input FX and Track FX sections, each with four simultaneous effects and four quick-access banks
  • Customizable FX and Track buttons for each phrase track
  • Massive onboard effects selection with 49 Input FX types and 53 Track FX types, including new Harmony, Electric FX, and many others
  • New ultra-durable faders with longer throw for more precise adjustment
  • Newly added Mark Back function provides enhanced undo/redo flexibility while performing
  • Two XLR mic inputs with phantom power, two stereo line input pairs, and three stereo line output pairs
  • 99 memories, each containing five phrase tracks, custom effects and playback settings, control assignments, and more
  • Synchronize your loops with over 200 onboard rhythm patterns and 16 drum kits
  • Deep MIDI control support
  • Two external control jacks, each with support for up to two footswitches or an expression pedal
  • USB for data backup, phrase import/export with BOSS Tone Studio, and pattern import with the RC Rhythm Converter

The floor-based RC-600 Loop Station lets you capture audio from multiple mics and instruments, with six stereo phrase tracks, nine freely assignable footswitches, three pedal modes, and deep external control support. There’s also a large, circular loop indicator and seven top-level LCD screen variations to provide visual feedback on current operations.

With the RC-600’s 49 Input FX and 53 Track FX types, users can process sounds before and after loop capture. Included are versatile effects from the BOSS library, a guitar-to-bass simulator and vocal FX. The Track FX selections also include DJ-style effects like Beat Scatter, Vinyl Flick, and more. Up to four Input FX and Track FX can be used at once, and banks of four can be stored in each section for quick recall.

The RC-600 also offers over 200 built-in rhythms in styles ranging from rock, pop, and acoustic to Latin, jazz, and electronica. Each rhythm type includes four pattern variations, intros and endings, and automatic fills to transition between sections. It’s also possible to import SMF rhythms using the BOSS RC Rhythm Converter software. And with 16 different kits, users can transform grooves with sounds from heavy rock to light percussion.

The RC-600 comes with the same connectivity and mixing features as the RC-505mkII.\

Features:

  • 32-bit AD/DA and 32-bit floating-point processing
  • Six simultaneous stereo phrase tracks
  • Ultra-flexible onboard control with nine freely assignable footswitches and three pedal modes
  • Massive onboard effects selection with 49 Input FX and 53 Track FX types and the ability to use four at once in each section
  • Time-based effects can automatically sync to rhythms and loop tempo
  • Two XLR mic inputs with phantom power, two stereo line input pairs, and three stereo assignable line output pairs
  • 99 memories, each containing six phrase tracks, custom effects and playback settings, control assignments, and more
  • Synchronize your loops with over 200 onboard rhythm patterns and 16 drum kits
  • Deep MIDI control support
  • Streamlined and durable metal body
  • Large circular loop status indicator and informative LCD screen with selectable display modes
  • Two external control jacks, each with support for up to two footswitches or an expression pedal
  • USB for data backup, phrase import/export with BOSS Tone Studio, and pattern import with the RC Rhythm Converter

Pricing and Availability:

  • The BOSS RC-505mkII Loop Station will be available in the U.S. in January 2022 for $599.99.
  • The BOSS RC-600 Loop Station will be available in the U.S. in December of this year for $599.99.

26 thoughts on “BOSS Intros RC-505 mkII, RC-600 Loop Station Loopers

        1. I think its when you overdub and the previous loops go down in volume and fade away. When I didnt know what that was, I kept buying and selling loopers to find one that didnt do that. Thought it was a bug since I want to hear all of my overdubs endlessly. Few EHX’s, then I foudn the RC-505 and was in on loopers. Cant think of why id want to overdub audio and have the 1st track disappear after im 5-6 overdubs in. What would be a use case for that?

          1. Here’s one very good use case (and you can observe this problem on several of Boss/Roland’s own demo videos). Think of building a loop composition as building a brick wall — laying row upon row of sound in layer after layer, and getting higher and higher.

            Eventually you’re going to build the wall as high as you can reach (e.g. you’ve filled up all the available space of frequencies, repeating over and over again). And now you have… what? A big fat monolith, that doesn’t move or change. You’ve now got to figure out what to do with it, and for many situations the answer is simply, “oh, I guess I have to tear it all down (kill it) and start all over again.

            Or, by using Feedback (aka Loop Aging or Loop Decay), you have a tool that will now allow you to fade out and remove those blocks selectively from the bottom, so you can continue building more sound layers up on the top. The big static monolithic wall you’ve built has now suddenly changed into an evolving and ever-changing game of Tetris, and you can gradually even transform the whole composition into something completely different from what you originally started.

            That’s why Feedback is such a basic and important tool. It’s also why I always get so annoyed at Boss/Roland’s stupid marketing hyperbole about how great their products are, when they’re obviously unable to implement one of the most basic looper functions that has been a standard function for over 30 years.

            (P.S.: As I mentioned, you can see “a good example of a bad example” by watching Roland’s own video demos. The one that immediately comes to mind is the first video for the Slicer, which has one of their loopers thrown in. The section of the video demoing that function shows the guitarist layering up part upon part upon part upon part, until he has this huge monolith of static looped sound taking up all the sonic space available. And how does he now deal with this big obnoxious wall he’s now built? Boss suddenly cuts the video to talk about some other Slicer function entirely.)

          2. Another good use case: you want to transition the key or tempo of the music and you want to do it gradually, as when you might smoothly fade between two tracks.

            Lower the Feedback on the looped content that is now playing to about 90-95% (more or less, depending upon how quickly you want to transition). Now, begin to overdub some of the new parts at the tempo and/or key you’re beginning to transition to. After those parts start to get established into the loop, add more as the old material is starting to now fade away, with the new loop layers beginning to take over.

            Eventually, either the “song” you were previously playing will be completely written over by the new song key or tempo, or you can opt to — if multiple loops/tracks are available — suddenly kill the old stuff entirely and leap into the new “song” with both feet.

            There are all sorts of elegant techniques to using Feedback/Loop Decay to manage your performance and transition between different sorts of material. It’s really something that every live looper out there should understand and have in their box of tricks.

          3. Listen to the music of Robert Fripp, or Terry Riley. It’s a great feature for ambient music styles where you would continuosly play, add layer by layer and have the old layers disapear, like sediments of sound.

            WIth all these extra Ins and Outs I think you could build a loop decay feature yourself: Route the loop you wanna decay to the sub out, plug it into a volume pedal and back into one of the inputs. Voila: You have your loop decay. You could also get creative and add filtering and distortion, wich are also features of the classic Frippertronic loop decay.

            1. Sounds like a great feature for a 1 track looper. When I have 5 other tracks, I wouldnt even call it a workaround, more like an evolving loop that I manually control. I understand the benefits of it now but I also see who the audience is for this device. The descriptions you gave sound like very specific use cases that could be handled by using more than a single track, so the loop you want to dissolve would just exist on another track that you fade out with the ultimate option to bring it back when you want.
              I guess you coul djust buy a pedal that has that feature but with all the pedals mentioned, not one have this amount of FX, tracks, XLR inputs, midi control and a slew of other features that make it a different device for different use cases.
              FYI, im referring to the desktop version, which makes it even less likely to have an aging loop feature.

  1. “ plus a new Bounce In function for capturing multiple tracks into one. Half and double speed options are also on hand, and you can freely change the overall playback speed with or without pitch change.”

    Ooof they got me! Half speed/double speed was my favorite thing about the green DL4, but Boss never put in varispeed pitch type tape effects in their loopers til now. Looks amazing.

  2. i want a looper with multiple ins and a stereo out like a mixer. so i can record 2 instruments to separate loop tracks at once. individual outs would be nice too, so i can put effects after the loop. or a couple effect buses. 12 tracks, 4 stereo 4 mono. basically a looper plus a mixer plus a midi tempo brain, whoever makes it will make bank $$$.

    1. Loop Fade in/out is not the same as Loop Decay (aka Feedback or Loop Aging). In some cases, it can be used for similar purposes, but it sounds different than interactively overdubbing new layers into a loop as the older ones gradually get overwritten and fade away.

      Sometimes you can “fake it” a bit with Loop Fade to get similar results, but it’s also harder to work with managing the various track fades at the same time you’re playing/improvising new material. Using Feedback is just soooo much easier if you’re doing things live.

  3. If I got it right, the SP404 original can’t serve as a looper on its own because you can’t sample line-in while you’re playing other stuff. Anyone know whether the MkII fixes that? Would be awesome to have something in between the SP404 and the RC505.

    1. Correct, at least not with the 404SX. Stops dead in its tracks when you hit record. Sound sliek the MK2 has a resample feature to resample patterns which the OG’s did not have. Maybe if it can resample a pattern playing, it can also sample an input as well.

  4. I wish someone would make a looper with FX send and return with the option to set them as pre or post loop. So far I’m not aware of any looper that will do this and it would really simplify things for folks with a large pedalboard. Sometimes I like looping a heavily effected signal, sometimes I want to loop the raw signal and then add my effects after. Only way I know of to achieve this now is with a tangle of external cabling, A/B/Y and loop select pedals.

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