JH-1 Jackhammer review by Marshall

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  • Ease of Use: 6
  • Sound: 7
  • Reliability & Durability: 6
  • Overall Impression: 6
  • Reviewer's score: 6.3 Neat
  • Users' score: 7.2 (126 votes)
Marshall: JH-1 Jackhammer
1

Purchased from: Local retailer

Ease of Use — 6
The pedal is not for beginners, but if you are a bit more experienced and persistent guitarist, you could get a good sound out of it. That's in fact my main dislike. At live gigs, when changing amps, I had difficulties finding the right tone immediately, which is not the case with, for example, Hardwire CM-2 or Hardwire SC-2 or Blackstar LT Drive (all of these are very straightforward and easy to adjust). It came with an instruction manual, and as far as I can remember, it was helpful.

Sound — 7
I used the pedal with Ibanez GIO GRG170DX, my first guitar ever, small guitar amp Laney LX12 and many other amps on gigs and rehearsals. The pedal has two modes: overdrive and distorsion. Overdrive sounds very good, and ranges from clean boost to heavy crunch in AC/DC style and a little heavier than that. I didn't like distorsion that much. It was too bassy and undefinied. But than again, at that time I used to not commit that much to trying to find proper sound, so I can't guarantee one couldn't use this mode too, and enjoy it. In short, overdrive great, distortion not so much.

Reliability & Durability — 6
I used it several times for live playing and didn't have any issues. What's more, I used it with a cheap power supply that wouldn't power other pedals. This pedal works with them all, and that's a great benefit. Finish is not top quality, and within two years I had it, marks on EQ pots were gone. Just a note: even before the marks vanished, they were hard to see if the lighting is dim (and it usually is when it comes to live performance). Also, paint scratched off around the jack for guitar cable. EQ pots fell off, but the problem was fixed using a few drops of glue. However, there's the high quality footswitch and durable casing. I'd just like to mention here that I'm not one of the guys who get drunk and smash their equipment for the fun of it. I really take good care not to damage anything.

Overall Impression — 6
At the moment, I'm in a more punk (Bad Religion, Ramones type of sound) and less ska band. The pedal is good for punk, rock, hard rock and heavier '80s sound. Here I'm talking about overdrive mode, of course. Distortion I could never use that much. I've been playing for over 10 years now, but at the time I had it, I was just a beginner, playing for about 3 years (this was my first guitar effect). Over the years, I had 3 guitars, over 10 guitar effects and 4 amps (played on even more), and if I had a chance to be in possession of this pedal again, I wouldn't keep it or use it again, because I think that there are much better sounding and user-friendly pedals.

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