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Tell me about the Zoom MS-50G (or MS-60B)


Jean-Luc Pickguard
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I have a secondhand zoom MS-50G incoming as I'm putting together a guitar pedalboard and wanted something small to add some delay/reverb, and play with modulation fx.

 

I don't know whether the firmware has been updated but if not that's the first thing I'll do when it arrives.

 

I have downloaded the tonelib-zoom software - is that the best thing for setting it up? What's it like to use?

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First off, don’t update the firmware. 
 

There is a hack whereby any bass or guitar effect can be moved to/from an ms60b/ms50g, but this was removed in later firmware updates.

 

If you only plan to use it for one instrument (guitar or bass) then update away.

 

I really like my ms60b for most things; the modulation and synth sounds are really good, the drives are less impressive.

 

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I've got one. It's not very gig friendly since it's fiddly to change stuff around, but in my experience, absolutely fine to use as either an 'always on' preamp sort of thing, or a single stomp box for a particular effect or set thereof. It has some great patches and some not so great. I use mine as a tuner/mute and a preamp patch which is pretty much always on.

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I'm a fan. It's a great catchall as it doesn't take up a lot of space but has a little bit of everything in there. Granted it's not the most 'adjust on the fly' devices but the size makes up for that. You just need to have your presets sorted before you gig. Probably only really useful for one preset per song but it works absolutely fine for me in that regard. One thing I noticed is that it needs a really clean power supply. I use a Harley Benton isolated power supply and it made SO much noise. Got a recommendation on here for a Palmer power conditioner for about 20 quid and that sorted it right out.

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I use mine in the ‘alphabet’ mode - assign a letter of the alphabet to each of the sounds you use, then use the middle button to cycle through them. Dead easy, and as has already been mentioned, takes up very little space on my (already full) board.

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I've had a few of the series they're great for the price. I use the G3 as a guitar practice setup with headphones and there's some nice amp sims in there; the stereo effects are excellent too, but I'm not into most of the drives. If the MS50G had an XLR out I'd have one on my board as an always on preamp even if just for emergencies.

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I ditched my MS60B because it only allows 4 effects at a time. The MS70CDR allows 6 and MS50G allows 5, and with the Zoom Effect Manager editor (it's not an official Zoom program) you can choose to install any effect from the MS, B1 and G1 pedals and ditch the effects you don't need. My CDR now has only my favourite 15 effects & amps installed.

 

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My MS-50G was finally delivered this morning. No box, manual or USB cable, but it looks like its in near perfect condition and it was only £50 so I'm happy.

 

I'm only going to use the pedal with guitar as I have a zoom B3 for bass so I won't bother with 'jailbreaking' the MS-50G to load MS-60B fx on. It had the v3.0 firmware when it came so I've flashed it to v3.1 and used the effect manager software to add some additional fx.

 

I just had a noodle with my banana yellow bullet mustang into my vox valvetronic amp via the MS-50G and some of the effects sound very impressive. The reverbs in particular are great

 

How to use the knobs and buttons is still a bit of a mystery to me so I've put the manual and effects list pdfs on my iPad so I can learn how to use it.

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One of my very early home videos... Things have progressed substantially since I was recording in a tiny back bedroom!!!!

 

OUT OF FOOOOOOOOOOOCUS!!! GAHHHH!!!

 

 

 

 

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On 18/01/2022 at 16:49, Jean-Luc Pickguard said:

 

 

How to use the knobs and buttons is still a bit of a mystery to me so I've put the manual and effects list pdfs on my iPad so I can learn how to use it.

 

I find Zoom stuff extremely counter intuitive when it comes to programming. I'm generally quite tech savvy and can figure most things out just by pressing buttons to see what they do. Didn't have a clue with my MS-60B. Like you I downloaded the manual, and spent some time with it. It's easy when you know how, but it's far from user friendly straight out of the box. 

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