A short while ago I bought a Zoom G3 multi-effect pedal for my synthesizers and was really blown away by it. Since then I have really used the G3 quite a bit and have had my eye on the new Zoom G5. Today I got an email from a music store here in Nagano-city, Japan and was told that they had just received a Zoom G5 this morning. I have a friend who works at this particular store and was able to get a nice employee discount so I decided to buy the Zoom G5 and give it try.
I haven’t had a lot of time to sit down and play with it today, but I can say the footprint is very good. It’s small, lightweight but sturdy, and in my opinion very cool looking. I plan to use this with synths and keyboards that lack effects and to experiment with different patches that are extremely simple to dial in with the Zoom G5. In fact, that is one thing I’m most impressed with the G5. It’s amazingly simple and fast to use. I really like how you get a nice visual display for each effect and have three dedicated knobs to tweak the parameters. The sound of the effects is fantastic and I do notice it’s better than my G3 but that’s subjective I know. The Zoom G5 appears to be built rather well and the displays are wonderful to see on a dark stage. The looper and built in drum machine are a nice bonus for laying down some nice creative song ideas with effects and I use these features extensively with my Zoom G3. I’m excited to do more with the Zoom G5.
Two features missing from the Zoom G5 are (1) and effects send/return loop and (2) midi connectivity. Midi is usually important to me as a synth player, but with the Zoom G5 it doesn’t bother me yet that it’s missing. Perhaps later, but for now I just enjoy the ease of use in allowing me to experiment with a multitude of effects that can be used to create patches with up to 9 effects in total. Wonderful!! The sales clerk at the music shop said there already was a waiting list being generated at the store and he felt the Zoom G5 would likely be a big hit in Japan which is why I ran down today to pick up their only model.
Although a good unit, the new Boss GT-100 isn’t selling as well in this particular shop and he thought it likely was due to the price point and the relatively low sales of the Boss GT-10 they had before. Their G3 and now G5 zoom products will likely fair much better although that doesn’t necessarily indicate they are better than the Boss or Line6 models in the store. For me, the Zoom G5 is a fantastic solution for experimenting with different effects in a synth or keyboard setup. The simplicity makes it so much fun to use!! I highly recommend the Zoom G5.