The DPC-5 is capable of some fairly complex stuff. We try to keep things as simple as possible but when you’re switching FX in and out, running MIDI controls, changing amp channels, etc. some complexity is just necessary!
This is a list of questions we get asked a lot, and we’re posting here to supplement the manual. We’ll update this post with more information as required, so ask us anything you’d like to know and chances are it will end up here.
Inputs and Outputs
What is the difference between the two inputs on the DPC-5?
The upper (black) input is the buffered input, and the lower (red) input is the unbuffered input / insert jack. The buffered input runs the instrument signal through a high-quality op-amp buffer based on a mythical pedal that rhymes with “pawn mentor.” The unbuffered input is simply a straight-wire connection to the effects loop relays.
Which input should I use?
We recommend using the buffered input. The buffer will lower the impedance of the guitar signal (this is usually a good thing.) In some cases, certain pedals will sound different when fed with a low vs. high impedance signal. If it sounds good, then go with it! Try it both ways and pick the one that you like best. If you are using a pedal with a rev 1b board or higher, be sure to change over the DIP switches inside to enable the tuner output.
What is the insert jack?
The insert function uses the unbuffered input to connect a pedal or group of pedals between the buffer and the switching loops.
You can connect a volume pedal to the insert – since the insert is AFTER the buffer, the volume pedal won’t mess with the tone of your guitar.
On pedals with board revisions 1b and up, muting the insert will still allow the tuner output to function.
Where is the insert / volume pedal input in the signal chain?
The insert is placed after the buffer, and before the FX loops.
What kind of cable do I need to use the insert jack?
A stereo y-cable is required. These are sometimes called “insert cables.” The stereo / TRS end connects to the insert jack / unbuffered input, and the mono ends go to the pedal or pedals to be connected. The “ring” connection is the send and should be connected to the effect input, while the “tip” connection is the return and should go to the effect output.
I see the DPC-5 has two outputs. Can I use these to run in stereo?
No. The upper output (black) is the main output and is fed from the FX loops. The lower output (red) is the tuner / chain output and is fed directly from the guitar input through a buffer. You can output two signals from these two jacks but the tuner output will never have any of the FX applied.
Does the tuner output work all the time?
Yes. You can press-hold any select footswitch in the preset modes (red, green, blue) or press-hold B6 in manual mode (orange) to engage the DPC-5 tuner mute for silent tuning. If you have a volume pedal in the insert, you can also mute the output by reducing the volume pedal to zero. The tuner will work no matter what. If your unit has a board lower than rev 1b, muting the insert will mute the tuner.
What are the TRS Outputs for?
The TRS (tip-ring-sleeve) Amp Control jack is located near the DC power jack and expression pedal connector. The jack contacts are connected to two relays that can be controlled by the programs on the DPC-5. These contacts can be used for remote switching of amp parameters such as reverb, tremolo, or channel switching. The “TRS Tap” feature on the DPC-5 also allows you to momentarily switch the “tip” relay when a tap tempo MIDI command is sent. This lets you sync up your MIDI and non-MIDI tap tempo devices. The DPC-5 is confirmed to work with the DD-5, DD-20, JHS Panther, Strymon Flint, and others.
Are the TRS Outputs floating, or do they share a ground with the audio signal?
They are floating. The jack is isolated from the chassis, and the contacts are isolated by their relays. The TRS jack may safely be used for amp switching that uses a “hot” sleeve, or AC control signals.
Can the DPC-5 change all my loops at the same time? How about my MIDI devices?
The DPC-5 can simultaneously change the states of any or all 5 of its effects loops, the states of its two TRS relays, and the patches on two separate MIDI channels. It also sends a MIDI program change on a third MIDI channel to allow for chaining multiple DPC units together or for additional MIDI devices.
What if I want to turn a pedal OFF? Can I do that easily?
Yes. You can enter a manual control mode from any preset mode by press-holding the mode button (B6) for two seconds. If you use manual mode a lot, you can configure the DPC-5 so that you step through it in the normal mode “cycle,” so it will be available without holding.
Can I control the DPC-5 using another MIDI device?
Yes. The DPC-5 has a MIDI input and will respond to up to 128 program changes on Channel 1. Each recalled program will change the loop settings and TRS settings, as well as send the patch changes for the two “mappable” MIDI channels.
If I am controlling the DPC-5 using my other MIDI device, can I still control it locally?
Yes. All of the DPC-5 controls work regardless of whether you are controlling it via MIDI. If the DPC-5 is in manual mode, the currently engaged loops will be indicated by the select LEDs. You can then turn the loops on or off, overriding the external MIDI control.
How many presets does the DPC-5 have?
The DPC-5 has up to three available preset modes with five presets each. 3 x 5 = 15 presets. By pressing and holding B1 + B2, you can enter a “folder select” mode that allows you to choose three additional preset folders, each with 15 presets. 4 x 3 x 15 = 60 presets total. It takes about 5 seconds to select a new folder and enter it, so it’s probably best done between songs or sets rather than between verse and chorus.
Working with Presets
How do I set up a preset?
Step over to a preset mode (red, green, or blue.)
Press-hold B6 to enter manual edit mode. The RGB LED will turn orange (might look yellow on some units.)
Tap the select footswitches to turn the loops on and off. Tapping B6 in this mode will toggle the TRS relays (tip on, ring on, tip+ring on, off)
If TRS tap is enabled, the TRS relays can’t be controlled in this mode.
Once the sound is set, press-hold any select footswitch to enter the save mode.
In save mode, the RGB LED will blink to indicate the current preset bank. Tap B6 to select red, green, or blue banks, or white to save the bypass setting.
Press-hold any select footswitch, B1-B5 to save the current sound in that slot. If the bypass bank is selected, any footswitch will save.
Press-hold B6 again to exit manual edit mode.
How do I map MIDI programs to a preset?
Step over to looper control mode (white.)
Press-hold B6 to enter MIDI edit mode. The RGB will turn violet.
Tap B5-B4 to change presets on MIDI channel 2, tap B3-B2 to change presets on MIDI channel 3.
Stepping DOWN one preset from 00A / Program change 0 will send MIDI CC 102. This will bypass the Strymon Mobius and Timeline, and may be used as a bypass for the Eventide Factor series pedals as well.
Stepping DOWN one preset from bypass will select “don’t care.” In this mode, no MIDI data is transmitted and the previously selected preset will remain.
Press-hold B1 to enter the MIDI save mode. The RGB will blink red/white, green/white, blue/white, or white/white to indicate the selected bank or bypass.
Press-hold any select footswitch B1-B5 to save the selected MIDI patches to that slot. If the bypass bank is selected, any footswitch will save.
What is the “bypass” setting?
Pressing the currently selected preset in red / green / blue modes will configure the DPC-5 for Bypass. In this mode, all of the loop relays are off / loops are bypassed, and MIDI CC commands are sent to the external MIDI devices to bypass them. This will turn off all of the effects and provide you with a clean signal path. Only the buffer will still remain in the audio path.
What if I want to have a pedal or a MIDI patch engaged all the time?
In this case, we can treat the “bypass” setting like a special preset. Enter the loop or MIDI edit mode as described earlier and set up the pedal or MIDI preset that you want to remain on. Next, enter the save mode and tap B6 until the RGB LED shows either blinking white (manual edit mode) or blinking white / white (MIDI edit mode.) Finally, press-hold any select footswitch to save the current settings to the bypass slot. From now on, selecting the currently engaged preset will switch the DPC-5 over to this new sound setting. One very handy use for this is to configure the TRS Amp Control relays – since there is no industry standard when it comes to amp switching, some amps have their effects normally ON (like Fender reverb) and some are normally OFF (like Fender tremolo.) By setting up the TRS Amp Control relays and saving the new bypass setting you can be sure that you won’t end up with the wrong effects applied.
How do I set up my Timeline and / or Mobius to work with the DPC-5?
The DPC-5 uses MIDI channels 2 and 3 for its preset mapping. It also uses MIDI channel 2 for the Timeline looper controls.
Set up your Timeline Globals as follows:
Set up the Mobius Globals as follows:
Connect the DPC-5 MIDI out to the MIDI in of either Strymon pedal. Connect the first pedal’s MIDI out to the second pedal’s MIDI in.
How do I control the DPC-5 from an external MIDI controller?
Send the DPC-5 a Program Change message corresponding to the preset you would like to access. The DPC-5 receives messages on Channel 1 only. Program Change 0 will set the DPC to “bypass.” Program Change messages 1-60 access the DPC-5 presets in all 4 folders (1-15 in folder 1, 16-30 in folder 2, etc.) Program changes up to 127 are recognized by the DPC-5.
How do I save presets higher than 60?
Saving presets higher than 60 requires the use of an external MIDI controller. Enter the loop edit mode by press-holding b6 from any preset mode (red / green / blue.) Edit the loop settings as normal, then press-hold any select button to enter the save dialog. While the RGB LED is flashing, send the DPC-5 a MIDI Program Change message on channel 1 corresponding to the location where you would like to save the preset. Program 0 is the bypass setting. The same method may be used to map MIDI programs to higher presets – enter MIDI mapping mode, then enter the save dialog. While in the MIDI mapping save dialog, send a Program Change message to the DPC-5 on Channel 1.