5 Pivotal Boss Pedals of the '80s

If you're reading this article, chances are you've owned a Boss compact pedal or two. How many of us count the DS-1 as our first distortion pedal or the DD-3 as what got us into delay? In the age of the boutique pedal, Boss compacts might seem a little entry-level to some. Maybe too safe a bet for more adventurous players. But how bout some of these classic Bosses from the '80s? These discontinued models have something to offer even the most advance cases of pedalheaditis.

DM-2 Delay

Years of Production: 1981 - 1984

While only produced for a few years, the classic DM-2 ranks as one of the most sought after delay pedals out there. Compared to modern digital behemoths it may wield just a spartan 3 knobs (Repeat Rate, Echo, Intensity), but with an analog delay like this, it's more about the quality of the tone than the amount of functions it can perform. The DM-2 is known for the dark, silky tone of its delays and the natural quality of each repeat.

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CE-2 Chorus

Years of Production: 1979 - 1992

When you think of guitar tones in the '80s, you think Chorus, and the CE-2 is perhaps the most iconic chorus pedal ever produced. This Boss pedal (along with the earlier CE-1 and Roland Jazz Chorus amplifier), did much to help define the sound of the day. The CE-2's effect is simple and immediately identifiable. This chorus effect is not subtle, like many today, but then neither was the music it helped create.

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HF-2 Hi Band Flanger

Years of Production: 1985 - 1993

As opposed to the long-running BF-2 Flanger, the HF-2 flange emphasizes the higher frequencies of the flange creating a lighter, more shimmery effect. Sure, you can get the jet engine swoosh if you want, but if you're just looking for is massive EVH sonic motion, this is not the pedal for you. This is more of a tonal enhancer pedal to bring out the best tones from the rest of your rig.

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VB-2 Vibrato

Years of Production: 1982 - 1986

The VB-2 ranks as one of the rarest and most collectable Boss pedals of all often fetching upwards of $500 used. This thing churns out an array of airy and clear vibrato effects with a nifty 'unlatched' function. When set to 'unlatch' the Vibrato effect will only engage when you hold down the stomp.

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DC-2 Dimension C

Years of Production: 1985 - 1989

Speaking of '80s Chorus, the DC-2 stands out from other Boss boxes wielding four preset buttons as opposed to tweak-able knobs. While the presets provide a lot of territory to explore, the DC-2 is primarily a chorus with similar tones to the Roland JC-120 amp. We've been hearing whispers from players and pedal builders that chorus is finding its way back on to many pedalboards. This would be a great pedal to snag to get in on that.

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