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Boss CS-3 Compression Sustainer Pedal   

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With the Boss CS-3 Compression Sustainer you get smooth sustain, a more balanced string response, and more clarity and punch at any volume. A must fo...Read More

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OVERVIEW

Keep control; make it last.

With the Boss CS-3 Compression Sustainer you get smooth sustain, a more balanced string response, and more clarity and punch at any volume. A must for recording. Ideal alone for a clean sound or in front of a distortion or chorus.

FEATURES
  • Smooth sustain with clarity and punch
  • Balanced string response
  • Level, Tone, Attack, and Sustain controls

Click or call now to get the sustain you want!

Reviews
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Review Snapshot

by PowerReviews
BossCS-3 Compression Sustainer Pedal
 
4.5

(based on 118 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (81)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (23)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (9)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (3)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (2)

100%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Excellent sound quality (16)
  • Responsive (14)
  • Versatile (11)
  • Good selection of effects (10)
  • Compact (9)

Cons

No Cons

Best Uses

  • Performances (10)
  • Home studio (9)
  • Amateur recording (8)
  • Professional recording (8)
  • Outdoor events / games (4)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Experienced (8), Professional musician (7)

Most Liked Positive Review

 

CS-3 thumbs up

For the price I don't think you can beat this deal or even come close. You don't always get what you pay for, sweet deals do come along.
First off, I'd...Read complete review

For the price I don't think you can beat this deal or even come close. You don't always get what you pay for, sweet deals do come along.
First off, I'd like to say that before you rate a compressor/sustainer/limiter, learn what it does to your signal and how it operates. I hear too much about these devices creating noise etc.
Secondly, I am going to compare it to a Dyna Comp, which I've used for decades and is considered "a standard" by many.
The CS-3 I feel is an excellent device. It does what it was designed to do and has some nice added features. It DID NOT add noise to my signal. If you hear noise it is because you are compressing the signal output closer to the noise floor of your instrument or other devices set in the path before the CS-3. The CS-3 in a A/B comparison to the Dyna Comp comes out on top. This was done with several guitars (including a classical acoustic with a piezo sensor). Both the Dyna Comp and CS-3 are quiet and add minimal distortion. In a way I prefer the Dyna Comp because it's so easy to use with it's one knob adjustment, but, the added features of the CS-3 make it overall a better device in my opinion. I especially like the attack adjustment which lets me customize the amount of "pop" or "snap" I get. The tone is cool too, but not that big of a deal as we have tone controls on guitar, amp etc. Then with the level and sustain adjustment you can come up with a sweet spot for the particular sound you want. Another plus, is has an electronic on/off switch unlike the Dyna's mechanical switch, so it doesnt pop when you stomp it.
I think one major problem people have is that thier reverb unit built into thier amp (especially spring types) is noisy and is placed ahead of the compressor thus raising the noise floor. If possible go directly from your guitar into the compressor and make this the first in the signal path.
Now the negative side of the universe. This unit will suk your batteries dry fast, and if you leave the cord plugged into the input, poof, new batteries will be turned into dead ones faster than Chuck Norris can kick you upside your head. Easy solution, just get a 9 nine volt adapter, which you should have already if you have more than two stomp boxes (call me captain obvious).
I have used many compressors and limiters of the professional variety, Uries etc. in many recording studios. Not to say that this on the same level, but electronics have come a long way over the years, and this device is remarkable for the price. As far as it's ability to withstand the test of time and how rugged it is, I dont know. I havent owned it that long. But it seems practically bullet proof and well made.
To sum all this up, I'm happy with my CS-3, it does what it's supposed to and does it well, and I didn't pay a whole lot for it. Kudos to Boss on this one.
It seems to be well made. Has curb appeal. No problems yet. But I've owned it less than a year. So time will tell
Best compressor I could find for a small price.

VS

Most Liked Negative Review

 

Some good, some not so

Remember, as with any compressor, put it first in your signal chain, as it will compress any noise as well as your guitar signal. With that done, the unit is reasonably clean....Read complete review

Remember, as with any compressor, put it first in your signal chain, as it will compress any noise as well as your guitar signal. With that done, the unit is reasonably clean. I play both single-coils and humbuckers, and it fattens up the driven/distorted tones nicely. I do not care for its performance with clean tones, however, as it seems unresponsive to control changes. No matter what I do, it seems to kill my attack and chop the highs and lows off the frequency response. Also, the output level seems inconsisten - it sometimes wanders around by itself. Perhaps I just got a faulty unit, but it's a real nuisance. I'll probably try to A/B compare one of these with the Dyna-Comp, which to my ear is a little warmer, though not as clean.

Reviewed by 118 customers

Displaying reviews 1-10

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5.0

A must have.

By Sixstring Ed

from Minnesota

About Me Experienced

Verified Buyer

Pros

  • Excellent Sound Quality
  • Responsive
  • Versatile

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Amateur Recording
    • Home Studio
    • Performances
    • Professional Recording

    Comments about Boss CS-3 Compression Sustainer Pedal:

    Great unit. Unbelievable sustain. Easy to use,

    Comment on this reviewHelp Icon

     
    5.0

    Great Pedal

    By BZ

    from NY

    Verified Reviewer

    Pros

    • Excellent Sound Quality
    • Responsive

    Cons

      Best Uses

        Comments about Boss CS-3 Compression Sustainer Pedal:

        Great pedal. Versatile; great for bass and guitar.

        Comment on this reviewHelp Icon

        (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

         
        5.0

        Works For Me

        By Strat7

        from Rescue, Ca.

        About Me Experienced

        Pros

        • Compact Design
        • Excellent Sound Quality
        • Responsive
        • Versatile

        Cons

          Best Uses

          • Amateur Recording
          • Home Studio
          • Performances
          • Professional Recording

          Comments about Boss CS-3 Compression Sustainer Pedal:

          My old compressor/sustainer broke, so I replaced it with this one. The compressor/sustainer is the most important pedal on my board. It's the only one I have on all the time. I have it first in my chain followed by octave, vibrato, overdrive, fuzz, wah, phaser, flange, chorus, delay and looper into my Blackstar HR1 tube amp. Today I spent an hour each with my 3 main electrics plugged in to give it a go. My American Standard Strat with hot noiseless single coil pickups, my Godin Icon Classic Type 2 with a Godin humbucker at the neck and a Duncan 59 at the bridge. These can be switched between passive and active through Godin's ingenious revoicer system. And my ESP KH LTD with active EMG humbuckers. I was able to set up the controls on the CS3 so that it worked with all 3 guitars no matter what the pickup configuration is, what other pedals are on or off, or whether I'm playing rhythm or lead. I don't like to diddle with pedal controls if I don't have to. Obviously I might have to do some tweaking as I go along, but this is a start. When I use other effects it's usually just my fuzz for heavy chords and then I'll add overdrive and/or delay for lead. The basic setting I came up with without having too much noise was level and tone in the middle, attack cranked full and sustain at 10 o'clock. I was surprised about being able to crank open the attack mode without having too much pick noise but it works for me. I'm very happy with the pedal after spending 3 hours with it. Sorry for the long winded review. I hope it's helpful, especially for you young guns out there! Keep Rockin!

          Comment on this reviewHelp Icon

          (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

           
          4.0

          Clean boost

          By Cameron

          from Akron, Ohio

          About Me Professional Musician

          Ask me a question

          Pros

          • Excellent Sound Quality
          • Responsive

          Cons

            Best Uses

              Comments about Boss CS-3 Compression Sustainer Pedal:

              I set the sustain to zero and turn the attack and tone all the way up. Really helps bring out the natural growl of single coil pickups and also drives your amp when the level is turned up. Great as a clean boost for leads.

              Comment on this reviewHelp Icon

              (0 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

               
              5.0

              You Don't Have One Yet?

              Profile Image

              By Earthtojohn

              from Au Sable Forks, NY

              About Me Professional Musician

              Ask me a question

              Verified Reviewer

              Pros

              • Excellent Sound Quality
              • Versatile

              Cons

              • None

              Best Uses

              • Home Studio
              • Performances
              • Professional Recording

              Comments about Boss CS-3 Compression Sustainer Pedal:

              I've owned mine for 20 years and it is still the back bone of my pedal board. Add a good overdrive and you are gig ready...If you do not own this order it now!!!

              Comment on this reviewHelp Icon

              (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

               
              5.0

              Long Overdue

              Profile Image

              By terrygh

              from Kansas

              About Me Professional Musician

              Ask me a question

              Verified Reviewer

              Pros

              • Compact Design
              • Enhances Sound
              • Excellent Sound Quality
              • Good Selection Of Effects
              • Responsive
              • Versatile

              Cons

              • None

              Best Uses

              • Amateur Recording
              • Clarification Of Sound
              • Events
              • Home Studio
              • Performances
              • Professional Recording

              Comments about Boss CS-3 Compression Sustainer Pedal:

              I do not know why I've never had one of these many years ago, maybe it's because that many years ago we just plugged in to the amp and, played. What a difference this pedal makes in my sound! I'll never go on stage without it. I guess I've never been much of a pedal musician but, this one made me a believer in how much better your sound can be.

              Comment on this reviewHelp Icon

               
              5.0

              CS-3 excellent pedal!

              Profile Image

              By mrgt70

              from Toms river NJ

              About Me Experienced

              Pros

              • Excellent Sound Quality
              • Responsive

              Cons

              • None

              Best Uses

                Comments about Boss CS-3 Compression Sustainer Pedal:

                love this product! Excellent addition to my pedal board!

                Comment on this reviewHelp Icon

                (1 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                5.0

                Boss compression pedal

                By Lou

                from Medford Ma

                About Me Novice

                Ask me a question

                Pros

                • Excellent Sound Quality
                • Good Selection Of Effects

                Cons

                  Best Uses

                    Comments about Boss CS-3 Compression Sustainer Pedal:

                    Works as advertised

                    Comment on this reviewHelp Icon

                     
                    5.0

                    Works properly

                    By Jan

                    from undisclosed

                    About Me Experienced

                    Ask me a question

                    Pros

                    • Compact Design
                    • Excellent Sound Quality
                    • Good Selection Of Effects
                    • Responsive
                    • Versatile

                    Cons

                      Best Uses

                      • Amateur Recording
                      • Events
                      • Home Studio
                      • Performances
                      • Professional Recording

                      Comments about Boss CS-3 Compression Sustainer Pedal:

                      Read the reviews and decided this is a standard piece of equipment in wide use. Operates as it should. Quiet, effective. I prefer using it with some distortion. I cut it out for a more natural sound.

                      Comment on this reviewHelp Icon

                      (1 of 7 customers found this review helpful)

                       
                      5.0

                      Excellent device

                      By tkjtkj

                      from ma. , usa

                      About Me Experienced

                      Pros

                      • Compact Design
                      • Excellent Sound Quality
                      • Good Selection Of Effects
                      • Responsive
                      • Versatile

                      Cons

                        Best Uses

                          Comments about Boss CS-3 Compression Sustainer Pedal:

                          This compressor/sustainer is perfect.

                          To save your time, note that it was very thoroughly reviewd by Scott Grove ( a professional musician of many talents including great teaching ability) on
                          YouTube.. Search there for:
                          'Compressors for Guitars and Basses' by Scott Grove.
                          THe device comes with a low-quality 9v battery that is described as being chosen only for 'testing purposes' .. So, unscrww the front pedal 'nut' and put in a good quality battery.
                          The pedal clicks On/Off , and a red LED displays.
                          but BOSS says to remove Input plug to prevent drain during storage, so not sure if drainage occurs when LED is 'Off' yet plug remains in the jack ..
                          This is the best at what it does.

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                          Displaying reviews 1-10

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