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BOSS MS-3 Effects Switching System


The MS-3 is a multi-effects switcher that has 2 primary functions for your pedalboard. Not only can it act as a switcher turning your pedals on and off with the click of a single button, but it also has on-board effects like delays, reverbs and modulation that you can use in conjunction with the pedals you put in the loop.

The MS-3 has 3 pedal loops where you can connect your favourite pedals and have them turned on or off by the MS3 switching system. Similar to the Boss es-5 or Boss ES-8 but in a smaller package. And with 112 dedicated effects on-board. Delays, reverbs, modulations and pitch as well as drives and distortions.

So where would you start? Well, this is the perfect solution for a small pedalboard and you can use it in a number of different ways.

With a tuner, EQ and noise suppressor built-in, you won’t have to waste precious pedal real estate on your board because the MS-3 has it all on-board.

3 Drives and the MS-3

You could use the 3 loops to connect your favourite drive, distortion and fuzz pedal and use the delays and modulations on the pedal for a small but highly effective pedalboard

3 Effects and the MS-3

Or you could connect 3 alternative effects like octave, delay and phaser and use the drives on the MS-3 for a slightly different take on the traditional pedalboard. It’s incredibly versatile and functional in many different ways. You can set it up however you want or however you need to.

MS-3 Editor Via USB

It couldn’t be easier to create your patches. All you need to do is connect the MS-3 to your computer via USB and set up the patches via the librarian software.

Here's what Boss say about the MS-3 Switching System:

The MS-3 Multi Effects Switcher is a new-concept pedalboard solution that maximizes your creative options by combining a world-class multi-effects engine and multi-pedal switcher in one small, dedicated unit. Now, anyone can put together a professional effects system that’s incredibly compact, extremely light, and versatile enough to achieve nearly any sound imaginable.

The MS-3 is a sonic powerhouse capable of running six internal pedal effects at once while seamlessly integrating three of your favorite external pedals. It also offers deep rig control capabilities, allowing you to switch amp channels, adjust effects in real time, work with MIDI devices, and more. With the MS-3, it’s easy to create a portable board or fly rig without the compromises associated with traditional loop switchers and all-in-one multi-effects units.

Pedalboard integration evolved.

• Powerful integrated solution for creating a compact professional pedalboard
• Unlimited sound creation with six simultaneous pedal effects and audio loops for connecting three external pedals
• 112 built-in effects types for guitar and bass, including delays, reverbs, mod/pitch effects, overdrives, distortions, and more
• Intuitive user interface for easy patch creation
• Backlit LCD, editing knobs, and panel LEDs for on/off status of loops and effects 
• Control assign, wave pedal, and other functions for deep real-time expression
• Equipped with numerous jacks for amp channel switching, effects control, and more
• MIDI output for working with MIDI-enabled effects
• Built-in tuner, noise suppressor, and global EQ
• USB for patch creation and backup via free MS-3 Editor/Librarian software

As Versatile As You Need to Be

The MS-3’s highly flexible design gives you the freedom to create any kind of effects system, from simple to complex. It can serve as a general-purpose effects unit to augment core tone from three stompboxes, or function as the central hub of an advanced hybrid rig with MIDI gear and channel-switching amps. It even works as a standalone effects processor, making it perfect for fly dates and other times you need to travel light. And if you’re just starting out, the MS-3 provides a solid effects foundation that can be expanded as your experience grows.

Three Loops for Your Choice of Effects

Via the MS-3’s audio loops, you can connect three different effects devices to the system. You’ll probably want to hook up your favorite drive and booster pedals to the loops, but you can use any effects you like. Once your pedals are connected, you’re able to switch the loops on/off individually, and position the MS-3’s onboard effects around them any way you want.

World-Class BOSS Effects Engine

To complement the three external loops, the MS-3 is equipped 112 effects types to choose from. They’re organized in six categories, which are available simultaneously: FX1, FX2, Mod1, Mod2, Delay, and Reverb. FX1 and FX2 contain many different types, from overdrives and distortions to compressors, pitch shifters, Slow Gear, and many others. Mod1 and Mod2 offer the famous BOSS chorus and vibrato effects, plus tremolo, flanger, phaser, and more. All the effects are fantastic for guitar, and there’s also a large selection specially optimized for bass.

Big Creativity in a Tiny Package

The MS-3 is packed with decades of BOSS compact pedal and multi-effects know-how, and offers an ultra-efficient design that lets you dial in inspiring sounds right away. There’s a backlit LCD that clearly shows patch/bank numbers and parameters, plus quick-access knobs for editing and status indicators for all loops and effects. And with 200 patch locations, you have ample memory for storing effects and control setups for instant recall.

Complete Foot Control

The MS-3’s heavy-duty footswitches give you easy command of the entire system. In Memory mode, the footswitches allow you to select patches and banks. Changing to Manual mode lets you switch loops and effects on/off, and even control multiple effects parameters for intense real-time expression. Your Manual mode assignments can be stored in patches, letting you create dynamic custom setups for different songs and styles.   

Pro Essentials

Going well beyond the basics, the MS-3 provides tons of options for expanded control. You’re able to connect external footswitches for tap tempo, effects on/off, and parameter adjustment, plus expression pedals for volume, wah, pitch shift, and more. Control out jacks are available for switching amp channels and controlling effects that support external input. And there’s even MIDI for sending tempo, PC, and CC information to MIDI-enabled pedals, whether they’re connected to loops or not. In addition, the MS-3’s two audio outputs can be set for full stereo or selectable mono operation per patch, providing great flexibility with dual amp rigs. 

USB and Remote Editing

The MS-3 supports USB for accessing the free MS-3 Editor/Librarian software on a Mac or Windows computer. This lets you edit effects, assign control parameters, set tempos, and more via a convenient graphic interface. You can also back up and restore individual patches, and organize groups of patches into Live Sets for various gigs.


  • Modes: Memory mode/Manual mode
  • Loops: 3

AD Conversion:

  • 24 bits + AF method
  • AF method (Adaptive Focus method) This is a proprietary method from Roland & BOSS that vastly improves the signal-to-noise (SN) ratio of the AD and DA converters.
  • DA Conversion: 24 bits
  • Sampling Frequency: 44.1 kHz
  • Effects: 112 types
  • Patches: 200

Nominal Input Level:

  • INPUT: -10 dBu
  • LOOPS L1--3 RETURN: -10 dBu

Maximum Input Level:

  • INPUT: +7 dBu
  • LOOPS L1--3 RETURN: +7 dBu
  • Input Impedance: INPUT 1 M ohms

Nominal Output Level:

  • OUTPUT L/MONO, R: -10 dBu
  • LOOPS L1--3 SEND: -10 dBu
  • Output Impedance: OUTPUT L/MONO, R: 1 k ohms

Recommended Load Impedance:

  • OUTPUT L/MONO, R: 10 k ohms or greater
  • LOOPS 1--3 SEND: 10 k ohms or greater


  • Number switches 1--4, MEMORY/MANUAL switch
  • ON/OFF button, MENU button, EDIT button, EXIT button, ENTER button
  • 1--3 knobs
  • POWER switch
  • Display: Graphic LCD (132 x 32 dots, backlit LCD)


  • Number indicators 1--4, MEMORY/MANUAL indicator
  • On/Off indicators (FX1, MOD1, L1--3, FX2, MOD2, DLY, REV)


  • INPUT jack: 1/4-inch phone type
  • LOOPS L1--3 SEND jacks: 1/4-inch phone type
  • LOOPS L1--3 RETURN jacks: 1/4-inch phone type
  • OUTPUT (L/MONO, R) jacks: 1/4-inch phone type
  • CTL OUT CTL1/2 jack: 1/4-inch TRS phone type
  • CTL IN EXP1 CTL1/2 jack, CTL IN EXP2 CTL3/4 jack: 1/4-inch TRS phone type
  • USB COMPUTER port: USB type B
  • MIDI OUT connector
  • DC IN jack
  • Power Supply: AC adaptor
  • Current Draw: 280 mA


  • 246 (W) x 97 (D) x 68 (H) mm
  • 9-11/16 (W) x 3-7/8 (D) x 2-11/16 (H) inches

Weight :

  • 1.1 kg
  • 2 lbs 7 oz


  • AC adaptor
  • Rubber feet x 4
  • Owner's manual

Options (sold separately):

  • Footswitch: FS-5U, FS-5L, FS-6, FS-7
  • Expression pedal: EV-30, FV-500L, FV-500H, Roland EV-5

0 dBu = 0.775 Vrms

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