Digitech’s new iPb-10 may be the company’s masterstroke of creativity. The concept is to take the whole preset culture of the signal processor world and apply it to a pedal board. And the thing really works.
Here’s the deal. Buy the iPb-10 and use it in conjunction with your iPad to easily and effectively arrange as many as 10 different pedals per board with a nearly infinite number of combos to choose from. You can save 100 of your favorite pedal boards and recall them at any time with the stomp of a footswitch. There are 54 amp and 26 cabinet models that you can use as well. And it’s all drag and drop via the iPad touch screen. By the way, the iPB-10 is compatible with both the iPad and iPad2. How’s that for slick?
Now, here’s how it works. The first step is to acquire Digitech’s iPad app called, appropriately enough, iPad Nexus. The app is free to download from the Apple iTunes App Store. Once you’ve nabbed the app, you can then physically dock your iPad with the iPB-10 and begin using all of the units’ killer functionality. We’re not going to cover every last switch, knob and feature here today. Instead we’ll take kind of a high level view and briefly discuss the main features and some of the sounds within the unit.
First of all, as a docking station for the iPad, the iPB-10 is very sturdy and secure. You won’t feel like your expensive iPad is in a precarious position. Once docked and with the Nexus app running you can now arrange up to 10 different pedals in any order you like. With 87 pedals, 54 amps and 26 different cabinet models to choose from you will never run out of options.
Using the iPads’ touch screen, guitarists can rearrange the signal chain, turn individual pedals on and off or simply adjust settings. As for saving your favorite configs, it’s done with the touch of a button. Recalling a favorite pedal board requires no more than stomping a footswitch.
As for the iPB-10’s sounds, there are many cool tones that can be dialed in. We all have our favorites and odds are that the majority of your favorite pedals are included in the Nexus app (pretty much all of mine are). While I can’t say that I am in love with every single model included here, I can say that to my ear the sounds are quite accurate, as true to the originals as a digital model can be.
For instance, when comparing my original Vox Wah to the included model I cannot distinguish any appreciable difference between the two. The Boss DS-1 Distortion model sounds completely true to my original Boss pedal. The Tube Screamer model sounds exactly like my TS-808. While I don’t own every pedal modeled here, for comparison purposes I’ll have to say that of the sounds I can make direct comparisons to, the models are all quite good, though no modeler gets every sound perfect.
Using the clean channel on my Marshall DSL100 and the iPB-10 for my basic sound, I can nail my favorite rock rhythm tone using the units’ Boss DS-1, Lexicon Ambience verb and Boss DM-2 analog delay. The sound is every bit as cool as using the original pedals. And the greatest thing about it is that I can assign that sound to a switch and call it back up at will. I mentioned it earlier but it bears repeating. You can save up to 100 pedal board configurations. Surely, enough for any playing situation.
There are many other examples of great tones inside this slick setup but it’s not really necessary to go through them all here. I’d have to write enough to fill an encyclopedia to accomplish it and none of us have time for that.
Suffice to say that with just a little bit of experimentation any player can be up and running with the iPB-10 in no time at all. And, Digitech promises many updates and upgrades down the line that will no doubt make the Nexus app even more comprehensive.
I’ll close out by saying that I give the iPB-10 high marks across the board.
See below for my personal ratings…
Ease of Use……………………..*****