BOSS has introduced the VO-1 Vocoder, which they describe as a unique and innovative compact pedal that puts the expressiveness of the human voice in the hands of guitarists and bassists. A spokesperson said, "By vocalizing into a connected microphone as they play, the VO-1 allows a musician to 'sing' with their instrument and easily achieve classic electronic voice textures, talk box sounds, and countless tones never heard before. The pedal also includes a Choir mode for creating rich ensemble sounds with any instrument, without the need to connect an external mic."
Here's the details directly from BOSS...
The VO-1 Vocoder harnesses the expression of the human voice by allowing the user to control the tone of their instrument via vocal manipulation. While keyboardists have used vocoders to create voice-like textures with synthesizers for decades, guitar and bass players have had limited access to this capability. Now, the VO-1 gives them this inspiring creative tool in a battery-powered stompbox that's simple to operate.
Driven by newly developed BOSS technology, the VO-1's four selectable modes deliver sounds that go well beyond the range of typical vocoders. Vintage mode produces the familiar synthesized voice sounds heard on numerous pop and electronic music records, while Advanced mode offers an array of all-new vocoder tones. Talk Box mode provides the famous "talking" lead guitar tones first popularized in the 1970s, but without the complication and hassles of a traditional talk box rig. Finally, Choir mode creates rich, impressive vocal textures from a direct instrument input.
The VO-1 is equipped with a 1/4-inch input for connecting a guitar, bass or other instrument, plus an XLR mic input to drive the vocoder engine. Tone and Color knobs provide a wide range of sound variation over the selected mode, while Level and Blend knobs control the overall volume and direct/effect mix. Send and Return jacks are also provided, allowing the user to patch in an external effect and apply it to the direct sound.