Nobels MS-8 Programmable Switch controller

Nobels MS-8serial#: 2C - 07694
year: 1991


Midi function switcher
8 programmable on/off latching or momentary switches
Special stereo connection for Fendertype amps
4 footswitch inputs to control MS-8
Midi in/out
Titel display
128 user defined presets

page updated: January 21 2001

Before I bought this one I used a Rockman Midi Octopus, which was very good, but this switcher offered me maximum flexibility in switching. It is able to switch on/off functions for amps like channel switching, reverb on/off etc. You can connect 8 jack cables to any device that has jack on/off outputs, program which functions should when be on and when off, hook a midi cable to a device that does the midi channel switching and you're done. This is something that some other gear can do as well, but what what makes this one special is that the grounds are not connected to each other, so no groundloophums and best of all you can program each output/switch to be either momentary or latching.

The hold time for momentary switching can even be programmed!. This device was designed and developed by Nobels in Germany built was sold for many years as a Fender switcher, maybe one of the only midi devices Fender ever sold. And especially for Fenders it has an additional connection for stereo or mono cables to switch  channels/reverbs. This thing is totally over designed (which I love), it has even 4 connections for footswitches with which you can use to control the MS-8 instead of using midi, you can give a title to each program and even make a custom power-up message. The only negative about the switcher is that it uses an adapter, apart from that it's the best function switcher ever built as far as I know.

Nobels MS-8 rear view

The Mesa/Boogie Quad preamp has no midi options, but has for each function (channel, EQ, reverb switching, 8 in total) a jack output. And guess what... the Nobels MS-8 can handle 8 functions, so it's a perfect match. So I've connect the two with 8 small cables and hooked a midi cable from this device to the DigiTech GSP2101, and now I can control my whole system with just one press on the right button. So no separate channel switching for the Quad preamp and the fx, which leads to a lot of tap-dancing, but just one press on the button and I can go from "clean + Accutronics reverb + EQ + detune + chorus + delay" to "screaming lead + EQ + (light) detune + noise gate" without any audio drops or anything, and just with one press on a button. :o)

With this device I can really get the best out of the Quad preamp, which is not possible in any other way. Besides the normal settings like clean + a 5 band EQ, I can also make stuff like "clean1 + eq1 + lead2 + eq2" at the same time. The Quad is able to run any channel at any time.... There is no end to the possibilities. You want all four channels on at the same time, just do it.

The MS-8 also controls the Custom A/B switcher which mutes the output of the preamp when needed.

Too bad these babies are out of production. If you search hard ( ) you can find them second hand for a nice price. Otherwise you would have to go with one from Axess, Rockman, Engl, Ernst Fliek, Rolls, Exef, DMC, Kitty Hawk, etc. Most of the previous mentioned companies still make similar devices, but new prices are most of the time much higher and have less functions to program. check the links section for their websites.

Related subjects

Mesa/Boogie Quad Preamp
DigiTech GSP2101
Custom A/B Switcher
19" Rack
Korg DTR-1 Rack Tuner
Signal line

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