The JDX Direct-Drive from Radial Engineering is an amp simulator for your pedalboard, giving you the tone and feel of not just one, but three different amp/cab configurations. With this pedal, you can very well avoid lugging an amplifier around town from gig to gig altogether, though the pedal does provide a passive thru-put to feed unprocessed signal to your onstage amplifier, should you choose to go that route anyway. A dedicated, buffered tuner output supplies any electronic tuner with guitar tone without extra loading on your pickup, or without introducing noise from quartz clocks.
The pedal itself uses carefully tailored filters to create faithful emulations of caps, combos, and amp/cab configurations. You have choices here. You can select the COMBO setting, which models an early Fender Twin, or STACK mode, which mimics the timbre of a Marshall tube head feeding a 4x12 cabinet. JDX 4x12 Mode gives you the cabinet only, its tone specifically modelled to give you the sound of a cabinet mic’d by a Shure SM57 dynamic microphone. Both COMBO and STACK modes can receive even more tonal juicing from a special, two-position toggle switch, which lets you boost the highs for extra sparkle.
For outputs, the pedal provides a standard, phone type 1/4” jack and a balanced XLR DI for feeding processed signal to the house, a mixer, or a recording interface. A 180° polarity-reverse switch allows you to phase-align the signal with your onstage amplifier, if it happened to be out of phase, while a ground switch eliminates hums and buzzing often associated with ground loops. The pedal runs off of 9 VDC, either from a pedalboard brick, or from a separately available power supply.
Controls at a Glance
GROUND Toggleswitch: This lifts Pin-1 on the balanced XLR output to help reduce the hum and buzzing caused by ground loops.
AMPLIFIER Toggleswitch: Part of the Tone Voicing section, this three-position toggle offers three different amplifier emulations. COMBO models the tone of a Fender Twin, STACK mimics the timbre of a Marshall amp/cab configuration, and JDX 4x12 emulates only the sound of a 4x12 stack.
PRESENCE Toggleswitch: Also part of the Tone Voicing section, this two-position switch provides extra sparkling highs for the STACK and COMBO settings.
Connections at a Glance
TUNER: This Hi-Z always-on output can be used to connect to an electronic tuner.
XLR: This balanced output is useful for feeding processed signal to a PA system or the XLR input of a recording device.
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