Zoom G1Xon Guitar Effects Pedal with Expression Pedal
- 75 effects
- 14 Amp models
- Up to 5 effects can be used simultaneously
- 100 memory locations
- Built in Expression pedal with additional effects
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From the manufacturer
In the box
- Operation manual
- AA size (LR6) battery x 4
The Zoom G1Xon Guitar Effects With Expression Pedal
Add nuance to your performance.
Give your performance that extra touch of control with Zoom's G1Xon. It provides 100 great-sounding multi-effects and includes a built-in expression pedal, perfect for increasing overdrive, changing volume, or adding wah or filtering to make your guitar sing. The G1Xon allows you to use up to 5 effects simultaneously, plus there's a built-in chromatic tuner, a Looper, and 68 rhythm accompaniments.
- 100 effects, including distortion, compression, modulation, delay, reverb, and a variety of realistic amp models
- Up to 5 effects can be used simultaneously, chained together in any order
- Built-in expression pedal for overdrive, volume control, wah-wah, or filtering
- Onboard chromatic tuner and Looper
- 68 rhythm patterns
- Separate input jacks for connection of guitar and personal music player, plus an output jack that can be used with amplifier or headphones
- Runs on 4 AA batteries or optional AC adapter, with alkaline battery life of 20 hours
The Ultimate Toolbox
You've never heard so many great-sounding effects from a single pedal. The G1Xon provides 80 different effects types, organized into 100 patches. These include distortion, overdrive, compression, phasing, flanging, chorus, tremolo, ring modulator, harmonizer, vibrato, reverb and delay, plus special expression pedal effects and amp models—even an acoustic guitar simulator.
Effects Chaining Made Easy
Question: When is a guitar effects pedal not just an effects pedal? Answer: When it's a multi-effects pedal.
The G1Xon not only allows you to select and edit any of its onboard effects, it enables you to use up to 5 of them simultaneously, chained together in any order you like. This kind of power and flexibility means that you can create rich, complex effects within G1Xon itself instead of having to use multiple pedals.
The G1Xon's built-in chromatic tuner is instantly accessible at all times and shows you whether the note you're playing is sharp, flat, or dead on. You can opt to either bypass the currently selected effect (thus giving you a clean, unaffected sound) when tuning, or to mute the signal altogether so you can tune in silence.
Rhythm training is an important part of every guitarist's craft, and the G1Xon Rhythm function makes it easy and fun to do. It places 68 realistic-sounding rhythms at your fingertips: high-quality samples of actual drums playing real-life patterns in a variety of different genres—everything from rock to jazz, blues to ballads, indie to Motown.
Explore your creativity to its fullest with the G1Xon Looper, which allows you to layer up to 30 seconds of performance, through the effect or effects of your choice. The Looper can even be used in conjunction with Rhythm accompaniments so you can play along with the pattern of your choice.
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|Item Dimensions||9.33 x 6.09 x 1.97 in||2.5 x 5.65 x 6.5 in||3 x 9 x 7 in||11.69 x 6.44 x 2.62 in||2 x 8.9 x 6.1 in||13 x 7.75 x 3.5 in|
Zoom G1Xon Guitar Multi-Effects Processor with Expression Pedal
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At first glance, the Zoom G1on looks like more of the same - small orange LCD interface with two footpedals, a single selector knob, and just a handful of dedicated buttons. But that's really where the similarities end. Under the hood, this $50 Zoom G1on is LOADED with functionality, and as a person who owns dozens of dedicated effects pedals, along with other modeling software and some small combo amps, I can say that while this is an unbelievable value for beginning guitarists - even more experienced musicians should appreciate it as a portable practice device and looper.
BUILD QUALITY - Again, the aesthetics of the Zoom G1on scream "early 90's", but the casing is actually quite durable and the choices they made allow this unit to sell for $50 while (reportedly) running on 4 AA batteries for up to 20 hours. (9V adapter not included, but if you have any of the BOSS-style 9V adapters around, those will work, or can be found for about $10 online. It can also be powered by the USB jack). The bass of the G1on is solid metal, so only the top and sides are hard-molded plastic. Therefore, the unit has quite a bit of heft to it, and I did not find it tempted to slide around after being tugged by an instrument cable and headphone attachment. I can't speak to the long-term durability of the buttons, but I've seen bad switches on pedals many times, and none of these seemed like a red flag to me on the G1on. Heavy stomping could surely damage the foot pedals, but I actually prefer it on a table closer to eye level for practice. For home use and operated with common sense, I expect it will last.
AMP MODELS - While the product is marketed as an "effects unit", it should be noted at the start that it operates as a full preamp and cabinet simulator modeling (now) 22 types of popular amps. These are well-selected, too, offering several Fenders and Marshalls, along with some other classics from Vox, Matchless, and Orange, and modern/hi-gain amps (MESA, etc.) as well. I haven't tried every amp quite yet, but the base amp tones are surprisingly full-sounding and convincing. Tube amp snobs will tell you that they aren't as good as the "real thing", but in my opinion, they sound very good, and are touch responsive in ways that are at least analogous to how a tube amp responds to your playing. Through the LCD screen, you also have an impressive number of parameters to control, including level, gain, 3-band EQ, presence, "tube saturation", and the output cabinet size and type. Needless to say, with this number of options, if you have a particular guitar tone in mind, there's certain to be a way to get something at least close to it.
EFFECTS - With a firmware update released months after the G1on was released (and factory-installed on newer productions), the G1on now boasts around 100 effects. Zoom quite blatantly tells you the name and model of the pedal or unit they are modeling, and they have a few of their own effects as well. Obviously, I can't break down all of them in an Amazon review, but I found them to be quite good. What's nice is that there are several options of each effect offered, so there aren't just two reverbs - there's closer to a dozen. And there isn't just a single "blues distortion", there's models of the TS-9 Tubescreamer, BOSS OD-1, a booster, and other options. Some have been critical of these effects as differing from their real life counterparts, but again, that's primarily semantics. If Zoom's Tubescreamer sounds totally unlike a real Ibanez pedal, yet is still useful, that's still an effect I can work with. The unit allows up to 5 effects to be chained at once, though two of those spots are often occupied by an amp sim and a noise gate. Also, you will occasionally get an error message that a certain chain of effects is too taxing on the devices memory resources, and cannot run. However, these are relatively rare, and only seem to appear with some of the more complex modulation effects in a long chain. I would rather the device cut things off if it's overmatched than try to run a complex chain and either freeze up or suffer from stuttering and terrible performance. In general, effects chaining works great, and it does allow you to move effects in the signal chain and even after the amp.
USER INTERFACE & PRESET MANAGEMENT - Where multi-effects tend to run into problems isn't so much in the amount of what is offered, but the practicality of how you switch from one sound to another, and tweak the individual settings for each effect, amp, etc. I'd be lying if I said that the G1on is free from all of these inconveniences - it isn't. But while the G1on limits you to 100 factory presets that can be overwritten, edited, or renamed, they did make some design choices that make it workable. From the home screen, the left and right footpedals cycle through banks of presets (Zoom includes a very detailed chart telling you what each is supposed to be, ranging from "Classic rock lead tone" to "Guitar tone of the dude from Maroon 5"). The banks are arranged A0-A9, B0-B9, and so on. The 4-way directional buttons allow you to skip to different letter bank for quicker navigation. Once you are within a preset, you can select a particular effect (such as a delay or overdrive pedal), and then the footpedals will turn that effect on and off. One of the best features is an "autosave" option: the default is to autosave every change you make to the patches so you don't lose those settings going forward. While some may not want this, I found it useful to weed out some of the totally unusable sounds. That being said, I do wish it made it a little easier to create and store my own patches based on a simple OD pedal -> Amp -> Reverb pedal setting. You can do this, but only if you overwrite some of the 100 factory patches.
RHYTHM/LOOPER FEATURES - I've seen a surprising number of G1on users who could care less about the amp simulations and effects, and buy the G1on strictly because it has a 30-second looper. Try finding a halfway decent looper pedal for under 100 bucks - it doesn't really exist. What's more, this looper can be played along with 68 rhythm patterns that cover a wide variety of genres. The sound quality of the drum beats surprised me the first time I heard it through my headphones...what a great practice aid! The looper is operated by the footpedals: you designate the number of beats for your loop, set the beats per minute (tempo), and then you can infinitely overdub your loops, provided the run time is less than 30 seconds. It does not have "undo" feature, however. This is my first hardware-based looper, and I can see getting a ton of use out of it.
DRAWBACKS - While my overall review is a glowing 5-star recommendation, I will mention some negatives about the unit that buyers should be aware of. Most of these are minor, or can be addressed with a workaround. As mentioned above, the unit does not come with a power supply (but does come with 4 AA batteries). It cannot be used as a recording interface, as the USB connection is only for firmware updates and powering the device. It has one 1/4" jack for output, whether you are using it to run an instrument cable out to an amp, or plugging in headphones. For the latter, however, you may need a 1/4" to 1/8" adapter (these are widely available for cheap).
The interface has a bit of a "language" to editing presets and individuals effects/amps, but I picked it up quickly. One thing that is a bit difficult to manage is volume. The good news is that it has plenty of output for headphones. The bad news is that the output level of different presets can vary quite a bit. There is no "volume knob" for headphones or output to an amp/speaker. If you are using an amp simulator, there is a volume knob there. There is a second volume option for overall output of each preset. And then there is a Master Volume that dictates the output of the whole unit, but again, this is in a menu and probably would have been better served as a dedicated knob on the unit. For the most part, once I lowered the master volume to around 50, I was able to enjoy most of the presets at a decent volume through my Sennheiser headphones.
The unit has a tuner, which is accessible by pressing both pedals, and I found it quite workable. It even has settings for alternate tunings! However, there does not appear to be any great way to "bypass" the entire unit, which limits its usefuless as a "stompbox" into a real guitar amplifier. There is a "bypass" effect, so I suppose you could set up an entire preset just as the bypass. But even in that case, I would expect there would be some coloration of tone running through the G1on, which is unfortunate.
OVERALL - Despite those drawbacks, I was absolutely blown away with how much I enjoyed the sounds coming out of my Zoom G1on. I wouldn't have paid $150 for it, and this wasn't really a device I "needed". But at $50, I simply couldn't put my guitar down. So often, we get that "5 minutes of curiosity" as a guitar player, where maybe we just want to experience playing with an auto-wah now and then, but don't want to necessarily BUY a $70 pedal for that sole effect. The G1on makes that possible in a way that is extremely convenient and gratifying. It's also small enough to fit in the front pocket of a gig bag, which means you could enjoy these sounds virtually anywhere. The rhythm and looper features are great, and there are endless hidden gems (the Acoustic Simulator is possibly the best I've heard, and I generally HATE acoustic simulators). If properly used and appreciated, it can help become a better player, provide endless hours of fun and experimentation, and maybe (just maybe) prevent you from spending needless money on ancillary effects pedals, since your $50 Zoom G1on probably already has that sound on board. Highly recommended.
Does it sound good? Of course it does, for Zoom have taken many of the sounds from their G3 pedal, which costs three times as much. Is it easy to use? Definitely. You can either use this with your expensive tube amp, using just the stompbox simulations, or add it to a cheap guitar and amp and get the sound you're looking for. But don't take my word for it - YouTube has a series of videos that shows off all 100 presets. (In case you don't understand how this works, as soon as you turn it on, you get the choice of 100 presets, made up of combinations of 100 effects. The effects include the sounds of famous amplifiers, such as Fender, Marshall, Vox, Mesa Boogie, Metal amps, and more. You also get a big range of stompboxes, and most of these are sound-alikes of well-known effects like Ibanez Tube Screamer, Boss distortion pedals, Big Muff and RAT. There are Fender reverbs and CryBaby and Ibanez Wah-Wahs. For all of these amps and stompboxes you usually have as many adjustments as there are knobs on the original.)
There are now 100 separate effects, and each has a number of parameters you can adjust. Like a real stomp-box or amp, all the parameters are available to tweak - even up to nine settings on some effects. I learned on-line that, of the up to five effects you can have working at the same time, they can be any combination of choices - multiple distortions, and even five of the same effect. And if five effects are not enough you can get a second G1on and have ten effects. (If you don't have those 100 effects, see my comment).
How reliable is it? Well, obviously, since having it just a few hours, I can't speak to long-term reliability. But it is strongly built, even if only the base plate is metal. But the rest of the body is made of strong plastic - as an indication of how strong plastic is these days, I used to wear a plastic crash helmet on my motorcycle that met all the strength standards. All of the switches feel good, and since the controls you use while playing are pedals, not small switches, unless you constantly jump on top of this, it should last you.
It's larger than the average pedal - it's like two pedals were joined together horizontally, and each of them is about fifty percent larger than a typical Boss pedal. But that means that it's easy to operate on stage. You can put your favorite sounds together in in sequential slots, so that you can have a rhythm tone followed by a lead tone. It looks like this is the prototype of the low-end Zoom line. If you want, you can spend another $20 on a model with a wah-wah style foot pedal, the G1Xon. And I see that in Japan there are now bass versions of these two pedals - the B1on and B1Xon (now also with 100 effects). All that's missing is the Acoustic guitar versions, and I expect to see an A1on and A1Xon soon.
The only thing I can find wrong with the G1on is that there is no space for user presets without destroying one of the factory presets. This is typical of many multi-effects at much higher prices. You can make all the factory presets reappear, but this is an "all or nothing" move - all your own presets will be lost forever. I hope someone will write down all the factory preset details, so if you change one to make your own setting you can make it reappear entering it by hand in a new preset location, where you have decided the original is unnecessary. Given that the factory presets cover just about all styles of guitar sounds (from '50s to current Metal), you'll find presets you'll never use.
Now my G1on is sitting on top of my Line 6 X3 live, and I haven't had time to compare the sounds, but I specifically bought the Zoom to give me two things that the Line 6 doesn't have. These are the Looper and Rhythm effect, and using either one of these won't affect what else you can choose. So you can have the sound you want, plus the Looper and the Rhythm box all at the same time. Given that this is a 30-second Looper, it will suffice for almost anything you need. As the cheapest dedicated Looper I could find cost almost twice the price of the G1on, again it was a no-brainer.
So, can you resist all this, including a tuner, an (optional) automatic save of new patches you make, a large display that makes changing things easy, USB MiniB (for firmware updates) and headphone ports, and simple controls? I don't see how you can resist spending around $50 to get all this. Of course, you may be one of those people with "Golden Ears," who complain that any modeled sound doesn't convince them. I think it's a question of getting what you consider is a good sound, and there are plenty of them in this box.
EDIT - And now with 100 effects, that's 50 cents per effect.
YOU CAN SEE HOW TO GET THE 100 EFFECTS IN MY COMMENT.
The new effects list:
OptComp - Aphex punch factory
Exciter - BBE Sonic Maximizer
Step - Zoom Original ("gives the sound a stepped quality")
RndmFLTR - Zoom Original ("changes filter character randomly")
fCycle - Zoom Original ("changes filter character cyclically")
Dist 1 - Boss DS-1
MetalWRLD - Boss Metal Zone
Hot Box - Matchless Hot Box
Z MP1 - Zoom Original ("merges ADA MP 1 and Marshall JMC800")
Z Scream - Zoom Original ("high gain balanced from lo to hi frequencies")
Z Wild - Zoom Original ("high gain sound with even more overdrive boost")
DuoPhase - Zoom Original ("combines 2 phasers")
Chorus - Zoom Original ("mixes a shifted pitch with the original sound")
Ensemble - Zoom Original ("chorus ensemble that features 3-D movement")
VinFLNGR - MXR M-117R
BendCho - Zoom Original ("processes each note separately")
BitCrush - Zoom Original ("lo-fi sound")
Bomber - Zoom Original ("an explosive sound when picking")
Z-Organ - Zoom Original ("simulates an organ sound")
StomDly - Zoom Original ("turn feedback up, make it self-oscillate")
MutltiTapD - Zoom Original ("several delay sounds with different delay times")
PitchDly - Zoom Original ("pitch shift to a delayed sound")
Arena - Zoom Original ("Reverb as if in a sports arena")
TiledRoom -Zoom Original ("reverb in a tiled room")
EarlyRef - Zoom Original ("only early reflections of reverb")
They come with a free firmware upgrade that you can get from Zoom. (URL in my comment).