Boss BR-1600CD Digital Recording Studio

Boss BR-1600CD Digital Recording Studio

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BR-1600CD Digital Recording Studio, Digital Multrack-studio from Boss in the BR series.

13 user reviews
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Boss BR-1600CD Digital Recording Studio tech. sheet

  • Manufacturer: Boss
  • Model: BR-1600CD Digital Recording Studio
  • Series: BR
  • Category: Digital Multrack-studios
  • Added in our database on: 01/05/2004

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Boss BR-1600CD Digital Recording Studio user reviews

Average Score:4.6( 4.6/5 based on 13 reviews )
 8 reviews62 %
 5 reviews38 %
Value For Money :

JimboSpins's review"Loaded with effects for vocals and guitars"

Boss BR-1600CD Digital Recording Studio
The Boss BR-1600CD is a well made digital multitrack recorder with an efficient interface and well places sliders and buttons. This recorded has plenty of effects on it that you can use with anything mainly vocals and guitars though. Using this recorder you will love how the interface is, it is very easy to understand just by looking at it and not even opening up the manual. You can figure everything out within the first hour of using it just because of how everything is places.


You can record up to 8 tracks simultaneously and playback up to 16 tracks simultaneously. You get EQ on all 16 tracks with compression on 8 tracks. There are a total of 8 microphone preamps and they are very warm and rich.


Connecting this recorder to your computer could not be easier because it is just a USB connection. There are 2 analog outputs and 8 XLR analog inputs. There are plenty of faders on this recorder to, it has a total of 13 but one of them is for the master.


The Boss BR -1600CD is a decently sized console but it is very light, it weighs around 10 pounds. If I could make a change to it I would make the screen a little better. It feels rather cheap, I would add a full color LCD display because for the price of 1500 dollars I at least want a LCD screen that I can enjoy looking at.
Of course the main feature of this console is the record right to a CD feature which is the main reason why people would purchase it because they would not need to have a computer to record anything with. If you do not like dealing with computers for your demo tracks then this is the way to go. You can completely cut out the computer to do your demos and mixes. I would not purchase this recorded if you need something portable, because it is light but the size of it is a little bigger than I would want to carry around with me.

racerevlon's review"A great all-in-one recording console for those who can't have a DAW"

Boss BR-1600CD Digital Recording Studio
The BR1600-CD is the BOSS flagship multi-track digital console recorder. The "CD" designation on the end of the part number indicates that there is a CD burner on-board the console so that when you're done mixing and mastering the songs, you can burn them to the CD drive and have a professional-sounding CD for way less than all of the equivalent studio time would have cost. The BR1600-CD has eight dual-purpose inputs that can accept 1/4" or XLR, and the XLR can provide phantom power to all eight ports. All eight channels can be recorded simultaneously which makes it incredibly flexible for recording stereo guitars, one or two at a time, or as you'll read below, a complete drum set. One of the great features of the BR is the ability to record tracks then export them to WAV format so they can be imported into another program such as SONAR or Pro Tools. The internal 40 GB hard drive is capable of storing a full album's worth of songs with multiple takes per track.


I bought this recorder before computer-based recording really took off and became consumer-affordable. I liked the fact that there were multiple tracks, a built-in CD recorder, and built-in processing and mastering effects. This is an all-in-one solution that is supposed to allow you to record, mix, master, and burn all your music onto a CD. The real sticking point with this unit is the interface and controls--tasks that should be relatively simple require scrolling through several menus and REALLY knowing this system inside and out. The included tutorial DVD is good, but not great. Don't get me wrong, this is a great unit and WILL allow you to produce professional-quality CDs. The problem is that the industry model changed and the fact that you can purchase hardware and software for your computer for equal or less than the price of the BR-1600CD makes it hard to justify unless you don't have a computer. The upgrade to version 2.0 software was easy to perform but didn't really make a noticeable difference. I've since moved to computer DAW recording but still use my BR units for scratch tracks and ideas. One point to emphasize is that when my band needed to record drum tracks, no one had an interface that would accommodate mic'ing up a full drum set. The BR-1600CD was the perfect solution. With eight XLR inputs we were able to mic up the entire drum kit, record the drum tracks, and export the files in .WAV format so that we could then import them into Pro Tools and save a ton of money and studio time, and got great-sounding drum tracks.


The BOSS BR-1600-CD has the BOSS GT-6 guitar processor engine on-board plus a vocal toolkit. Considering when the BR-16000-CD was launched this was something relatively unheard of. Having the basic functionality of the GT-6 floor processor at your fingertips to record both guitar and bass, plus an additional on-board vocal toolkit and mastering tools make the BR-1600-CD a force to be reckoned with. Understand, these are not "light" versions or stripped-down versions of the GT-6 and vocal toolkit, these are the full suites of effects and mastering tools. All of the sounds in the BR are top-notch and intended to allow you to produce professional-grade recordings, all of which can be mixed down locally and burned directly to CD.


If you're not ready to take the leap into computer-based recording, this is the top of the consumer-grade products. You could obviously purchase more expensive Roland or other units, but for the money, this is the recording console to have. Once you go through the instructional DVD a couple of times and master the navigation of the controls the BR-1600-CD can be used to record, mix, master, and produce a professional-quality CD recording, worthy of any home or car stereo. If you don't have your own studio, or can't afford studio time but want to get your music out to the world, this is the unit for you.

MGR/gatorblue's review"Boss BR-1600 Recording Workstation"

Boss BR-1600CD Digital Recording Studio
I've been playing in soul, blues and R&B bands since 1968 (old guy). I still play soul and blues professionally in our state. I also play acoustic blues for recording purposes only, backing other singers. I have played with and backed many well-known names in all three genres.

I paid $995 (after the $100 rebate from Roland). I bought it a week ago. I did a lot of research before replacing my 6 year old Tascam 8 channel unit.

Very sophisiticated pre-amps built in. Excellent drum samples with more than 150 loops that aid in laying down a "click" track for multi-track recording that can then be replaced with live drums. Also good for recording the whole band for up to 8 channels at a time.
While I am a tube amp guy all the way (owning 4 of the best tube amps ever made), the COSM amp effects are great for laying down rhythm and bass tracks without having to mic the amps--that and the digital drum sample loops are excellent. The effects are way beyond good and the ability to actually record 16 tracks without going to virtual tracks is something I like. It also has Voice Box pitch correction and harmonizer which I will not use much, but can be handy. Korg makes a good product that is 32 tracks for the same price, but the extras on this unit make it much more efficient for someone like me and the sound quality is absolutely studio quality. XLR inputs with phantom power is also a plus.

Only one thing.. the "go to zero" button and the Rewind button should be switched, but that is a very small issue.

so far, so good. But I will only use in my studio and do not plan on travelling with it very often

Great overall recording "workstation" that allows a musician (who is not a techie) to master the thing within 2-3 days and concentrate on making music in a very efficient manner. Outstanding sound and high quality additional tools all in one box for $1000.

This review was originally published on
MGR/Kevin Alan Mattson10/25/2005

MGR/Kevin Alan Mattson's review"Boss BR-1600 Digital Multitrack Recorder"

Boss BR-1600CD Digital Recording Studio
I've spent 30 some years on the road in music and entertainment. Mainly an acoustic guitarist, and a 12-string specialist. Now in my old age (just turned 50) I still play regularly, but have settled down to running my project studio and publishing company.

I have a well equipped PC-based project studio, but wanted to do some live remote recording of local music groups. The BR-1600 seemed like the best bang for the buck. $1400 at

This highly portable box, about the size of a small briefcase, has robust features; way more than I can list here. Including:
8 XLR mic/line inputs, each with trim control.
8 tracks of simultaneous recording.
A large bank of vocal, guitar, bass, and other effects based on the same circuits as Boss's excellent stand-along products. E.g., the unit includes the Boss GT-6 guitar effects.
CD burner--you can actually record, mix and master a complete CD all inside the unit, complete with good FX.

My first project was a live recording of a youth music group at a big church. The BR-1600 worked perfectly recording 8 tracks. The backlit LCD display is a bit primitive, but adequate with good-enough VU indicators.

I moved all the tracks to my PC for editing in Sonar. The resulting project has won me raves among my musician friends here in Duluth.

The "plastic" feel of the box makes me wonder how will it will travel over time. I keep it in a foam padded suitcase, and a few bumps have done no harm so far.

The controls are fairly arcane. You really need time with the manual even to do the basic recording. I haven't attempted to do much with it's editing and mastering functions.

The LCD display is very primitive. And there's no option for an external display.

Slow response time for loading and saving projects.

Apart from it's over-all plasticness, it's seems to be made well. It's been reliable for me for almost a year.

One thing about Boss, they maintian a long product cycle. That is, their units change slowly and are supported for a long time. So once you have one, you won't feel it's obsolete over night.

Despite limitations, at the prosumer level the BR-1600 is the best bang for the buck in it's class.

This review was originally published on

Boss BR-1600CD Digital Recording Studio images

  • Boss BR-1600CD Digital Recording Studio
  • Boss BR-1600CD Digital Recording Studio
  • Boss BR-1600CD Digital Recording Studio
  • Boss BR-1600CD Digital Recording Studio

Boss BR-1600CD Digital Recording Studio manuals and other files

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Other names: br 1600cd digitalrecordingstudio, br1600cddigitalrecordingstudio, br 1600 cd digital recording studio, br1600 cddigitalrecordingstudio, br1600cd digital recording studio

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