Amid the usual glitz and noise, Marshall launched its latest series of guitar amplifiers, the JMD:1 series, backed up by an impressive gig together with Dean Guitars at the prestigious The Grove venue, where the backline was all Marshall JMD.
The concept, Marshall says, is simple: Take the equipment, technology and tones of professional guitar rigs and fuse them together into a single amplifier series, adaptable to any style and any situation. Less gear to transport, reduced setup and take down time and most importantly of all, an enhanced and uncompromised performance. There are four models in the launch range: the JMD100 100W head (pictured), the JMD50 –50W head, then two 'matching' combos, the JMD102 2x12-inch and the JMD501 1x12-inch.
The JMD:1 is one of the most comprehensive and sophisticated amplifiers Marshall has created to date, combining state-of-the-art digital pre-amp technology with
studio quality FX and sheer EL34 valve power. Working in close partnership with Swedish software house Softube, the Marshall team have crafted what it believes to be the latest evolutionary benchmark in hybrid amplifiers that picks up where the renowned JMP-1 left off.
At the very heart of the UK engineered JMD:1 series is Marshall's proprietary EL34 power amp section, a fundamental element in many of Marshall's professional all-valve
amplifiers. This power stage design has been paired with an all-new digital preamp that, for the first time, utilises Softube’s patented 'Natural Harmonic Technology'. This system actually matches the dynamic reactions of valve amplifiers and the way they behave to various intensities of playing, ensuring that every note feels right and marks an epoch in digital tone technology.
The digital nature of the preamp section enables the JMD:1 to house 16 complete topologies from a variety of Marshall amplifiers and pedals, both past and present. Amps such as the 1959, the JCM800 2203, the DSL100, the JVM410H and the JMP-1. These and many others have provided the JMD:1 with a comprehensive collection of tones, transcending the entire history of Marshall’s heritage. Divided between four sections, Clean, Crunch, Overdrive and Lead, each preamp has been chosen for its individual character and tonal quality. Brand new sounds have also been created by combining amplifier/pedal topologies, resulting in totally unique Marshall tones, exclusive to this series.
The fully loaded FX section offers ten completely adjustable effects, custom voiced to complement the dynamic nature of the JMD:1, including a highly responsive noise gate feature. The modulation medley of Chorus, Phaser, Flanger and Tremolo provides everything from subtle shimmers and gentle vibe to full-on detuned sweeps and rotary speaker effects. Independent controls for rate and depth allow for precise modulation tinkering, with the latter doubling as the Noise Gate threshold. The four specially designed delay FX, namely Analog, Tape, Hi-Fi and Multi, offer both retro and modern echo styles with time and mix level controlled separately, affording complete reflection control. Rounding off the JMD:1’s internal FX unit is a quintessential reverb effect, taking your sound from tight to spacious in a single sweep. All-in-all a total of three FX can be use simultaneously –Noise Gate/modulation, Delay and Reverb. Additional tone manipulation can be achieved through the programmable FX loop, ideal for adding both pro rack equipment and external guitar level effects to your sound.
Included with each unit is the JMD:1 footcontroller that uses Marshall's proprietary Stompware technology that allows user assignable patches of tone and effects, making obsolete the need for rows of pedals at the guitarist's feet.