Boss BR-864 8-Track Digital Studio
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Boss BR-864 8-Track Digital Studio

BR-864 8-Track Digital Studio, Digital Multrack-studio from Boss in the BR series.

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All user reviews of 4/5 for the Boss BR-864 8-Track Digital Studio

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Average Score:4.6( 4.6/5 based on 21 reviews )
 13 reviews62 %
 7 reviews33 %
 1 user review5 %
Value For Money : Excellent
MGR/Dean Brewis09/06/2004

MGR/Dean Brewis's review"Boss BR-864 Digital Studio"

Boss BR-864 8-Track Digital Studio
Having played in a band when I was younger and having now taken up the guitar instead of drums, I wanted a way of recording an entire song with myself producing every sound within the confines of my spare room. I looked at several alternatives and settled on the 864 - it was purchased from Sound Control in Bristol (England) and I paid £350 cash.

The sound quality is exceptional given that I used to record with a microphone - there are no longer dogs barking in the background and I don't annoy anyone else - I can record at ANY time and although I have not taken it out of the house since buying it, anyWHERE.
The range of effects if outstanding, particularly on the guitar and vocal side of things. The list of features is vast and providing you can be bothered to invest the countless hours to learn how to achieve the desired result (it will do just about everything you can conceive of) - then it is an excellent buy.

The first thing that annoys me is the construction. Yes it has to be lightweight, but I fear that I have to treat it with kidgloves as it does not seem to be very robust. It consequently lives in its box which I have simply modified with scissors to allow the lid the shut despite it being permanently connected to the relevant cables. I would personally have prefered to sacrifice some of the weight aspect for an aluminium case and paid more.
The second point is by far the most daunting aspect. Initially I was lead to believe that the 864 was simple to use in that it is like a conventional cassette recorder - well it has stop/start/record buttons like a normal recorder but there any similarity ends. It is horrifically complicated to operate beyond the basic recording functionality. Having had it for nearly 8 months I am still struggling to assimilate the basic ways of doing things. Although the manual is well written and has lots of diagrammatical help, there is something incredibly convoluted about the way the instructions are phrased - and I am a systems analyst, not some uninitiated numpty with no clue. In fact I would go as far as to say it is beyond the reach of many of its purchasers and despite what other reviewers may write, I suspect few wish to lose face by admitting we are in rocket science territory. A 200 page instruction manual should tell you something about the product before you even turn the device on and that is - there is a lot of stuff to learn.
The built-in drum sounds are extremely weak also and lack any real 'kick' - I prefer the more laborious route of connecting my Yamaha pads and laying the percussion side down manually.

As above, I find it lacking in the longevity department - a more durable case would inspire more confidence. That said, it is of a reasonable quality and the rear panel offers a great many connectivity options.

Too complicated - FAR too complicated.

Excellent audio quality.

Excellent range of features, provided you can be bothered to assimilate all the modes and buttons and flashing lights. Yes you can take it out of the box and record within 10 minutes, but do anything else and be prepared to let your instrument gather some dust whilst you go back to school.

The price is about right.

This review was originally published on http://www.musicgearreview.com
MGR/cpaauw02/28/2004

MGR/cpaauw's review"Boss BR-864"

Boss BR-864 8-Track Digital Studio
I bought the unit in Germany for 500 Euros, this included (a non original Boss power supply).

The portablility and the ease of use I like best, also the sound quality is very good. I take theunit everywhere I want and can even run it for a long time on batteries. Because of its portability and easy of use it promotes what it is all about ; your creativity making music.

The biggest shock is that you don't have software to convert the recordings on your PC, you have to convert your tracks on the unit itself to .wav or .aif format before you can export it to the PC. The conversion on the unit takes a lot off room on the Compact Memory card so the included 128 Compact Flash doesn't get you very far. It is super frustrating that after your recording you find out that you can't convert it because your Compact Flash card is full. It is strange because the BR-8 and the BR-532; which are older machines do have the software to convert on the PC. I contacted Roland; they have no plans providing the software.
The internal microfone is also noit very good; using a good external microfone ( I use a Shure SM58) works very well and is recommended.
Also; one can only plug one guitar in and one microphone; I would have liked extra inputs.

The Boss-Br864 feels pretty solid (better than the Fostex). The knobs and functionality are similar from the ofther (bigger) Boss multitrack recorders so when you upgrade the learning curve you have with this unit transfers easilly.

Overall; for guitarists / song writers like myself a recommendation; unit which you have years of recording learning and flexibility. The lack of software conversion is a big minus; recommend to get the 1 GB Compact Flash.

This review was originally published on http://www.musicgearreview.com
MGR/k-man12/04/2003

MGR/k-man's review"Boss BR-864 8-Track Digital Multi-Track Recorder"

Boss BR-864 8-Track Digital Studio
I aquired this unit from e-bay for 370 dollars. I was surpised to see it listed as I was searching for a somewhat new digital recorder to work with on my new CD.

I like this particular unit because I use a lot of BOSS equipment and it is a brand I know I can trust, also the face of the unit is very easy to understand even for a novice recorder. Also the expense of a studio is very high, and for someone looking to record a lot of material at their home this is the perfect thing to buy.

There really is nothing about the unit that I don't like. For the price, it is really all you could ask for.


The unit is easy to understand, fairly simple to work, and has a great quality digital recording.

Anyone looking to work on a demo in the comfort of their own home should definitely think about purchasing this item.

This review was originally published on http://www.musicgearreview.com
MGR/Bex11/25/2003

MGR/Bex's review"Boss BR-864"

Boss BR-864 8-Track Digital Studio
I was given this unit as a birthday gift. I believe it cost about $750 Canadian.

It is very easy to operate. The manual is clear and I had it up and running in no time. Being a person who avoids electronics at almost any cost, I was delighted by the ease of operation. Resulting sound is brilliant, especially the quality of the vocals!

It's a bit fiddly to transfer the tracks to PC to be burned, especially if you're not at home with your PC when you are recording. Anyone that is on the road a lot would probably want a unit with a built in CD player. The drum tracks are a bit weak sounding, and were tough for me to program at first.

The unit seems very durable. It is lightweight and compact, and all the pieces are solidly put together.

For this price range, I would strongly recommend the Boss BR-864.

This review was originally published on http://www.musicgearreview.com
MGR/Al Roy11/08/2003

MGR/Al Roy's review"Boss BR-864 8-Track Digital Multi-Track Recorder"

Boss BR-864 8-Track Digital Studio
I acquired this unit at Italmelodie music store in Montreal,QC and I paid around $800 for it.

What I love about this piece of equipment is that I can record anywhere, as it is very portable. When I want to get together with some friends or bandmates, I can bring this equipment anywhere, to anyone's house, basement or loft, to lay down some tracks. Also, it can hold up to 1 hour of high quality recording, which are easily played back. There is an instrument input, XLR and 1/4" mic inputs, and a stereo RCA line out, as well a guitar amp and bass simulator with effects. What makes it so easy to use, is that it has a built-in microphone and battery power, a tuner, phrase trainer, and a programmable rhythm with tempo and many presets. You can also import drum files to record with. It's pretty much an powerful little unit that can be used anywhere, without spending too much money.

There isn't much not to like about this piece of equipment, other than there could be more effects, and the phrase trainer could be made more useful for all players.

There is a high quality instrument input, XLR and 1/4" mic inputs, and a stereo RCA line out, as well a guitar amp and bass simulator with effects. What makes it so easy to use, is that it has a built-in microphone and battery power, a tuner, phrase trainer, and a programmable rhythm with tempo and many presets. You can also import drum files to record with.

It's pretty much an powerful little unit with many options that can be used anywhere, without spending too much money.

This review was originally published on http://www.musicgearreview.com
MGR/RipNasty11/02/2003

MGR/RipNasty's review"Boss BR-864 8-Track Digital Multi-Track Recorder"

Boss BR-864 8-Track Digital Studio
i paid around $500 for this fine piece of machinery at a local music store called Sam-Ash

Thiis recorder is fabulous it records well, it sounds good, and its not too hard to operate.

i don't like the fact the buttons are so small. I have huge hands and the tiny buttons are hard to press

Very high quality and construction level of this particular unit

Real good recorder

This review was originally published on http://www.musicgearreview.com
xaula7102/23/2006

xaula71's review (This content has been automatically translated from French)

Boss BR-864 8-Track Digital Studio
Just go to the website, but no;)

UTILIZATION

Well, I would say fairly easy to use,
except for the drum machine, I even abandoned, too painful, I prefer using a PC with a soft adequate, it is much more user friendly.

Many foncitonnalite with the tracks, after six months I have not tried yet ....

possibility to export to a PC via the Compact Flash memory card or directly from the device via a USB cable (not supplied), but every time you have to convert your recordings into wav file which takes some time and the memory space, you need a lot of memory at least 512MB in order to be Allais, the 32MB provided is insufficient.

SOUNDS

C not bad, not c the professional quality of course, but to do good models c impecable.

I play the guitar especially with a US strato, the effects are no more correct:
the noise gate => not good
distortions, => means
chorus / flanger => good
delay => good
Compressor => medium
wawa => medium

In short, the digital sound effects, normal is the digital, but it's still very correct.

overall quality of the recordings is good, not breathing, proper separation L / R, kits and batteries are very good.
But even when it lacks a bit of momentum all ca (normal I'm used to tube amps)

OVERALL OPINION

C an interresting tool, a condition not to seek the professional quality, to want a portable machine that is running quickly and relatively easy to use in your 10s mini portable studio is ready to record.

My only complaint export to the PC is a bit long, take the version 900CD not more expensive.