We checked out the first two members of the Boss Legend Series previously and, although we were struck by how good the FBM-1 and FDR-1 were, we did have some doubts as to the reverb of the '65 Deluxe Reverb pedal.
Here, Boss applies its huge know-how – not to mention the bespoke COSM technology – to provide a vintage-flavoured Fender-style reverb without any amp modelling. Gone are the smaller knobs, dual-concentric pots and so on, replaced by a three-knob layout along the same lines as the classic SD-1 or DS-1.
"For general gigging and recording, this is as authentic as it's likely to get."
The knobs here comprise a Mixer to balance the dry and wet signal, a tone pot for smoothing-off the reverb's rough edges, which we didn't find especially appealing, and finally a Dwell pot.
The latter is the secret to the pedal's tonal success as it also enables you to alter the richness and, for want of a better word, twangy character. Obviously, there's no genuine spring used here, but that said, the pedal is, tonally, incredibly convincing.
Hear it in action. Clip one (Mixer 2, Dwell 2):
Clip two (Mixer 5, Dwell 4):
Clip three (Mixer 6, Dwell 7):
Classic Fender reverbs are warm and lush, and recreating such organic tones can be a difficult one for solid-state units to pull off. Here, though, the FRV-1 twangs in spades, with everything from a subtle enhancement all the way to full-on Dick Dale madness faithfully at your boot tips; even the 'pop' caused by pick attack is recreated.
As long as you balance the tone with your dry amp signal, you'll get a huge amount from this pedal. It's a compromise but, for general gigging and recording, this is as authentic as it's likely to get.