Opinions on the Boss WS-20 and WS-20L?

  • Good day! I'm looking for opinions on the Boss WS-20 and WS-20L wireless kits. I'm not afforded the opportunity to test these units out. I like the form factor of these units as it doesn't require yet another device to be plugged into a power source. I'm trying to drastically reduce my rigging time as well as my gear footprint on stage. I've watched a couple of Youtube reviews with varied results. What bothers me the most is the sound quality I have heard on some videos . The WS-20 gets compared a lot to the Line 6 Relay G10 as they are priced similarly. What I hear in some videos is that the G10 has a fully rounded sound with a decent amount of headroom and dynamics. The Boss on the other hand has sounded in some videos to be heavily compressed with a roll off on the high frequency information ass well as it having an unpleasant saturation. Normally this would have put me off immediately, but I have watched a couple of videos were this was not prevalent and seeing as I do prefer the Boss's form factor over the Line 6 I thought I'd ask others opinion first.

    I would like to know if the sound is as affected as I can hear on these videos. Also as I understand it, both the Boss and Line 6 has some or other cable coloration modeling going on (sounds gimmicky to me, but here we are). The Boss WS-20L however does not and is geared towards acoustic guitars or active pickups. I would like to know if this model would perhaps be a better option over the high end roll-off on the WS-20? I have heard no opinions on if the WS-20L is suited for normal active guitars. I will be using it on a Fender American Professional Stratocaster as well as a Line 6 James Tyler Variax.

    I'm willing to take a gamble on the signal dropout some people have experienced. I do have a lot of wifi traffic on stage that controls some lights I have made as well as the desk. But they will be on a different frequency bandwidth as the receiver and I will be moving the same distance from the receiver as what a normal cable's length would allow me. I do have a in-ear receiver that I use from time to time.

    I'm at this stage heading more towards the Line 6 Relay G10s, but I'm still open towards opinions before making a final decision.

    Thanks for reading.

  • I purchased the WL-20 last week and I used it at a gig at the week end and it worked great so far. What I don’t like is how the dongle sticks out of the guitar so I’m going to make a small right angled jack lead that lets me Velcro the dongle to the profile of the guitar. I will post more of a review once I’d used it at a few more gigs this weekend

  • I own both.

    The G10 came first.

    If I had all my effect pedals or my Kemper Stage (or any other all in one system) permanently fixed to a pedalboard, I would use the G10. No doubt.

    As I use an all in one system that uses to go in a cabin case, I prefer the WL20. No doubt. Much faster to set up and pack. Much more. And cleaner area and less footprint.

    So I have the G10 living his golden retirement at home, always connected to the system I use there, and take the WL20 on the road.

    Both sound very good, BUT, I find that, having the receiver on the floor, the G10 works better; the signal travels better than when I connect the WL20 to the pedals. I solved this getting a 1.5 metres guitar cable. I connect one side to the Stage/AX8/HeadrushGigboard and the other side, after fixing it to the microphone stand with a rubber band, to the receiver. No problem, then, no matter how big the stage is.

    I think I must say the G10 transmitter recharges the batteries surprisingly fast.

    My gigs are 2-2.5 hours long, and I can do 2 gigs with their soundchecks with any of the systems without any problem. Probably 3 or 4.

    I also had a Line 6 G30. It was my first wireless. Fantastic, but I like much more not having the transmitter and a cable in the guitar strap. And now I don't have to worry about batteries, (that's a very very important plus for me and, supposedly, for the planet).

    So, short story here:

    Considering that both units have great quality:

    -If I use a pedal case with things permanently fixed to it, and there is room for the G10 receiver, I'd go for it.

    -If I'd just use guitar and amp, or and all in one pedal system (or different pedals to set up and pack every day) NOT fixed permanently to a case, WL20.

    No doubt.

    And, well... Finally answering your question (^^) : I think both systems sound better than a regular cable.

    Hope this helps.

  • I played with the WL-20 a bit last night. My initial impressions are good. I just have one snag which is the unit completely kills my laptop's wifi. My Kemper and laptop were standing right next to each other so I'll see if distancing them from each other will improve the signal degradation on my laptop which I suspect should be fine. I changed the channel on my router a couple of times as well as pair the receiver-transmitter, but it didn't help. I'm going to test it during rehearsal tonight to see how it fairs with our critical wireless gear, especially my in-ears and wifi for the desk etc. I'm fairly positive a bit of distance will solve this issue.

  • Last night's rehearsal went well! There was no dropout on any of our other wireless equipment. I unfortunately can't make a detailed summary yet because I broke a string last night (the first one in more or less 10 years!) and had to play the majority of the evening on my backup guitar which has hotter pickups than the Strat I usually play on. But I could determine the signal into my Kemper was stronger than usual. There was no saturation or drastic compression in the signal. I'm playing a couple of gigs this weekend at a local festival. I'm looking forward to put the unit through its paces then.

    When I'm back in my studio I'll compare it more thoroughly with a cable or two for interest sake, but thus far I'm pleased.

  • The weekend's performances went well. I had one little snag during sound check were I had severe dropouts, but that was because I had my phone in my pocket. As soon as I switched it off all was well. I can again confirm that the WS-20 gives a hotter output than any of my cables, but there is no additional saturation or perceivable compression. I enjoyed the added boost it gave. The guitars I used were a Fender American Professional Stratocaster and a Line 6 James Tyler Variax 59 with it's own battery. I will still test this more in a controlled environment when I have the chance to do so.

  • I think I'm getting a Sennheiser XSW-D Instrument Base Set.

    Depending on the day, the WL20 and the G10 have too many drops. Specially the WL20. They both sound fantastic, and when there are no drops they are great, but last Saturday, in a big gig, I had to get a cable. So...

    Our sound engineer says he doesn't trust the 2.4 Ghz systems.

    BTW, our bass player is using an Xvive with no problems. I'll give it a try.

    The Sennheiser seems to be much more powerful (75 meters, they say) and it's more expensive, so it should be better.

  • I have been using mine a lot this last week, but it has either been in our studio/rehearsal space, my house or 3 different venues that we perform at a lot, so I have had no new environments to test the wireless system in as of yet. Thus far I still have only had issues with it when my phone was close to it (only happened once, but I'm mindful to switch it off now) and when the receiver was right next to my laptop. The cellphone killed the transmitter and the receiver kills the laptop's wifi.

    I'm yet to try it in our bigger show were there will be 9 lighting fixtures all with their own wifi. This will be the ultimate test for me. I must say for me the convenience of having the WL-20 has been great thus far.

  • I can only comment on the WL-50 setup that I have been using for a couple of years now. It has been rock solid. The other gents in my band are using them as well. No issue and they sound great!

    Fractal Axe III/FC-6, Kemper Rack/Remote, Friedman ASM-10 & ASC-10, Fender CS x4

  • I've been using the sennheiser for about 3 months now...so far very good, no drop outs.....but....the joint on the guitar plug is not adjustable and has losened over time so had to send it back.

    Replacement sent ( took weeks) but seems to be a design floor..it's not critical but it results in the bug not staying parallel with teh guitar body but drooping down...

  • I've been using the sennheiser for about 3 months now...so far very good, no drop outs.....but....the joint on the guitar plug is not adjustable and has losened over time so had to send it back.

    Replacement sent ( took weeks) but seems to be a design floor..it's not critical but it results in the bug not staying parallel with teh guitar body but drooping down...

    You mean when placed in Les Paul stile guitars?

    So the part that flips in the transmitter is... loose?

  • Yes, when set at 90 degrees, its come loose and dropped to 180 degrees and flopped around...


    That's not good.

    So, in the beginning it was all right and then it got more and more loose.

    I'll think about it some more time.

    Maybe using some Velcro or any other idea from the first use...

    Thank you very much!