- PASSIVE DI
The Radial JDI is a warm sounding passive direct box that can transfer extreme signal levels without distortion while eliminating hum and buzz caused by ground loops.PRODI
The Radial ProDI is a high performance passive direct box that is ideally suited for bass and acoustic guitar to deliver a warm, distortion-free sound.Trim-Two
The Radial Trim-Two is a passive direct box, designed for use with laptop computers and other consumer type devices where the user has a requirement for a 'ready access' volume control for quick adjustments on stage.JDI Stereo
The Radial JDI Stereo is a passive stereo direct box designed to handle extreme signal levels without distortion of any kind.PROD2
The Radial ProD2 is a high performance stereo direct box designed to easily interface keyboards to the PA and recording system without noise.StageBug SB-2
The Radial SB-2 is a passive direct box designed for keyboards and active bass. Features stereo to mono mix function to save mixer channels.JDI Duplex
The Radial JDI Duplex is a stereo passive direct box that fully capable of handling any audio signal without distortion, artefact or noise.ProAV1 & PROAV2
The Radial ProAV is a passive direct box with stereo-to-mono merge function designed specifically for the audio-video integrator to reduce channel requirements.StageBug SB-5
The Radial StageBug SB-5 is a compact stereo direct box designed to accommodate laptop computers, tablets and other consumer audio products when amplifying the signal through a PA system.JD6
The Radial JD6 is a 6-channel rackmount direct box designed for keyboards in studio and live touring where optimal signal transfer is required without noise.ProD8
The Radial ProD8 is a high density 8-channel rackmount direct box optimized for professional keyboard rigs where optimizing signal transfer without noise is needed.StageBug SB5W
The Radial SB5-W is a passive stereo direct box designed to fit inside a standard electrical wall box and utilizing a Decora wall plate cover.
- ACTIVE DI
The Radial Firefly is a class-A direct box that combines a 12AX7 tube drive with transformer isolation to deliver spectacular warmth and character.J48
The Radial J48 is a 48 volt powered active direct box that delivers studio quality performance while eliminating hum and buzz caused by ground loops.JDX 48
The Radial JDX 48 is a guitar amp DI that captures the sound of the amplifier and speaker to deliver the tone of a 4x12 half-stack without the need of a microphone.USB-Pro
The Radial USB-Pro is a high-resolution DI box that converts sound files from a laptop and seamlessly transfers them to a pair of balanced audio outs.JDV MK5
The Radial JDV is a class-A direct box with a unique zero negative-feedback circuit that delivers unmatched signal purity for the most demanding recordings.J48 STEREO
The Radial J48 Stereo is a high performance active direct box with extra headroom and advanced grounding for professional touring and studio recording.PZ-DI
The Radial PZ-DI is a unique direct box that is specifically designed for acoustic and orchestral instruments.JPC
The Radial JPC is an active stereo DI with transformer isolated inputs to eliminate noise that is common with computers and consumer audio devices.Headload
The Headload is a combination load box and attenuator that is capable of handling up to 130 watts RMS of continuous power and peaks of 180 watts.PRO48
The Radial Pro48 is a high performance active direct box that is ideally suited for bass and acoustic guitars to deliver clarity without distortion or artifact.StageDirect
The Radial StageDirect is a state-of-the-art active direct box designed for musicians who require extra control when they are on stage.J33
The Radial J33 is a combination stereo phono preamp and direct box designed to interface turntables to professional audio systems.Headload Prodigy
The Headload Prodigy is a combination load box and DI that lets you perform or record at low volume with maximum tone.StageBug SB-1
The Radial SB-1 is an ultra-compact active direct box designed for acoustic guitar and bass that fits inside a guitar case!StageBug SB-4
The Radial StageBug SB-4 is a compact active direct box that has been optimized for use with piezo transducers.BT-Pro
BT-Pro™ is a Bluetooth® DI designed to capture the wireless transmission from a Bluetooth® device and convert the signal to a balanced line for use in a PA.JDX Direct-Drive
The Radial™ JDX Direct-Drive is a unique and powerful device that simulates the sound of a guitar amplifier.4-Play
The Radial 4-Play™ is a multi-channel direct box that has been specifically developed for multi-instrumentalists to enable them to quickly change instruments on stage.
The Radial X-Amp is a dual output class-A active Reamper that lets you take a pre-recorded track and send it through amps and pedals without noise.Reamp JCR
The Radial Reamp JCR is a high-performance passive Reamper that lets you take a pre-recorded track and send it through a guitar amp or pedal chain without noise.ProRMP
The Radial ProRMP is a passive Reamper that lets you take a pre-recorded track and send it through a guitar amp or pedal chain without noise.X-Amp 500 Series
The Radial X-Amp is a 500 series class-A active Reamper with isolated outputs that lets you send a pre-recorded track to two amps and re-record the new sound.Reamp KIT
The Reamp Kit combines a Radial J48 direct box for recording with a Radial X-Amp for Reamping amps & pedals to enhance the tone of your recorded tracks.SGI
The Radial SGI Studio Guitar Interface class-A line driver with load correction lets you send a guitar signal beyond 100 meters via balanced cable without noise.JD7
The Radial JD7 Injector is a class-A guitar distro/splitter with built-in Radial DI and Reamp that can drive up to seven amps or pedal chains simultaneously.JX44
The Radial JX44 Air Control is a wireless signal manager for concert stage that lets you remotely control 4 guitar inputs and 6 amp outputs at once.SGI-44
The Radial SGI-44 guitar interface is a balanced signal extender designed to send the signal from a wireless receiver to the pedalboard and back to the stage amp.
JS2 / JS3
The Radial JS2 and JS3 are high performance passive microphone splitters that lets you feed mixing consoles without signal degradation or noise caused by ground loops.PRO-MS2
The Radial ProMS2 is a high performance mic splitter that accepts a balanced microphone signal and sends it to three outputs simultaneously. As a passive device, there is no need for power.OX8
The Radial OX8 is an 8-channel rack mounted microphone splitter that lets you feed two mixing consoles without signal degradation or noise caused by ground loops.LX8
The Radial LX8 is an 8-channel rack mounted line level splitter that lets you feed two audio systems without signal degradation or noise caused by ground loops.JD7
The Radial JD7 Injector is a class-A guitar distro/splitter with built-in Radial DI and Reamp that can drive up to seven amps or pedal chains simultaneously.JX44
The Radial JX44 Air Control is a wireless signal manager for concert stage that lets you remotely control 4 guitar inputs and 6 amp outputs at once.mPress
The Radial mPress is a modular press box that can be expanded as needed to feed a community-sized press gallery or distribute audio for an international event.Exo-Pod
The Radial Exo-Pod is a passive broadcast splitter that can take the balanced line output from a mixing console and distribute the signal to 14 hand-held recorders, video cameras or wireless receivers.Catapult
The Radial Catapult is a 4-channel audio snake that lets you send analog or AES digital audio signals over standard Cat 5 or Cat 6 shielded twisted pair cable.LX-2
The Radial LX-2™ is a passive balanced line level audio splitter that allows you to easily send an audio signal to two different destinations at once without noise.LX-3
The Radial LX-3™ is a high-performance balanced line-level splitter designed to send one audio signal to as many as three destinations at once.
The Radial Twin-Iso is a two channel balanced line-level isolator that eliminates the hum and buzz caused by ground loops that is often encountered in audio systems.J-ISO
The Radial J-ISO & Pro-Iso are full bandwidth stereo interfaces that converts +4dB balanced line level signals to an unbalanced consumer level output.Pro-ISO
The Radial J-ISO & Pro-Iso are full bandwidth stereo interfaces that converts +4dB balanced line level signals to an unbalanced consumer level output.J+4
The Radial J+4 is a -10dB to +4dB stereo preamp that lets you boost a low output unbalanced signal and interface it with a balanced professional audio system.JPC
The Radial JPC is an active stereo direct box with transformer isolated inputs to eliminate noise that is common with computers and consumer audio devices.McBoost
The Radial McBoost™ is a high performance microphone signal booster designed to elevate the output of a typical dynamic microphone for greater transient response.SGI
The Radial SGI Studio Guitar Interface class-A line driver with load correction lets you send a guitar signal beyond 100 meters via balanced cable without noise.SGI-44
The Radial SGI-44 guitar interface is a balanced signal extender designed to send the signal from a wireless receiver to the pedalboard and back to the stage amp.STAGEBUG SB-6
The Radial StageBug SB-6 is a high performance 2-channel passive audio isolator designed to accommodate both balanced and unbalanced signals.STAGEBUG SB-7
The Radial StageBug SB-7 Earmuff Headphone Silencer lets you turn off one side of your headphones to stop the bleed.STAGEBUG SB-15
The Radial Stage Bug SB-15 High Performance Signal Buffer lets you drive guitar pedals without added noise and also powers 15V Tonebone pedals.ICECUBE IC-1
The Radial IceCube IC-1 is a balanced line level isolator designed to quickly eliminate hum and buzz problems in an audio system by simply inserting it into the signal path.DECODER
Decoder is a microphone preamp and Mid/Side stereo matrix that allows the user to easily create M/S recordings without having to re-configure a recording consoleSpace Heater
The Radial Space Heater is a single space 8-channel tube overdrive that can be used as a stereo summing mixer or as multi-channel studio distortion.Twinline
The Radial Twinline is a unique device that enables a guitarist to share effects pedals between two amps when using the amplifiers' built-in (rear-panel) effects loops.MR5
The Radial MR5 is a MIDI signal translator that allows you to use a MIDI controller to drive the JX44, JX42 and other Radial products that use the JR5 footswitch.
Radial studio products simplify the work-flow without affecting the signal quality to ensure creativity is not hampered during production.MC3
The Radial MC3 monitor controller is a 'straight wire' passive switcher that lets you control two sets of monitors, sub woofer and feed two sets of headphones.Gold Digger
The Gold Digger is a 4-channel mic selector that enables the engineer to quickly compare the sound of four different microphones while sharing the same preamp.Cherry Picker
The Radial Cherry Picker is a unique tool that simplifies the process of selecting the best preamp for use with a given microphone.
Guitar / Amplifier
Whether switching guitars on stage or amps in the studio, Radial offers a complete range of switchers from simple ABYs all the way up!JD7
The Radial JD7 Injector is a class-A guitar distro/splitter with built-in Radial DI and Reamp that can drive up to seven amps or pedal chains simultaneously.JX-42
The JX-42 is a compact guitar selector that lets you instantly switch between four guitars and two amps on stage.JX62
The Radial JX62 is a guitar and amp switcher designed for both wired and wireless guitars in a live concert touring environment.jx44
The Radial JX44 Air Control is a wireless signal manager for concert stage that lets you remotely control 4 guitar inputs and 6 amp outputs at once.JR5
The JR5 is a remote footswitch that lets you select guitars, amps or effects when used with the JX44 and JX42.JR2
The JR2 is a dual function remote footswitch that lets you switch or mute outputs, depending on the Radial device that is connected.BIGSHOT ABY
The Radial BigShot ABY is a true-bypass ABY switcher that toggles or combines two guitar amplifiers in phase and without hum & buzz caused by ground loops.BigShot I/O
The Radial Bigshot I/O is a true-bypass instrument selector that lets you switch between two sources and balance the signal level between them.BigShot EFX
The Radial BigShot EFX is a true-bypass effects loop switcher that lets you turn on or off two pedal-chains and take them out of the signal path when not in use.BigShot SW2
The Radial BigShot SW2 is a dual output remote control with choice of latching or impulse settings to control two amplifiers or effects.Twinline
The Radial Twinline is a unique device that enables a guitarist to share effects pedals between two amps when using the amplifiers' built-in (rear-panel) effects loops.
Radial addresses the fast paced world of live touring with a range of switchers for backing tracks, wireless systems and mixers.Relay Xo
Radial Relay Xo is a 1-in, 2-out switcher for balanced audio used with mic or line level sources as talkback and communication router.SW4
The Radial SW4 is a four channel balanced audio switcher designed for wireless systems, mixing consoles and digital guitar processors.SW8
The Radial SW8 is a backing track switcher that automatically switches between two playback systems to prevent disaster during a live performance.HotShot DM-1
The Radial HotShot DM-1 is a combination mic mute and switch that enables the artist to communicate to band members and techs via momentary footswitch.HotShot ABi
The Radial HotShot AB1 is an XLR balanced input selector that can instantly toggle between two input sources to one output via a latching footswitch.HotShot ABo
The Radial HotShot ABo is an XLR balanced output selector that can instantly toggle one input between two output destinations via a latching footswitch.JR2
The JR2 is a dual function remote footswitch that lets you switch or mute outputs, depending on the Radial device that is connected.JR2-DT
The JR2-DT is a desk-top version of the JR2. It features two top-mounted activator switches to control AB and Mute functions.BigShot SW2
The Radial BigShot SW2 is a dual output remote control with choice of latching or impulse settings to control two amplifiers or effects.
The Radial Phazer is an analog phase alignment tool that lets you combine two sources and bring the fundamentals together for a more natural tone.Phazer Bank
The Radial Phazerbank is a 4-channel analogue phase adjustment tool that enables the engineer to effortlessly adjust the phase between two microphones when double mic'ing a single source.PhazeQ
The Radial PhaseQ is 500 series phase alignment tool that lets you combine two microphones and bring them into perfect phase for a more natural tone.EXTC-SA
The Radial EXTC-SA™ is a stand-alone audio interface that lets you incorporate guitar effects into the realm of pro-audio recording.EXTC
The Radial EXTC is a 500 series effects send & receive module that lets you incorporate guitar effects into the realm of pro-audio recording.Tank Driver
The Radial Tank Driver is a wonderfully unique 500 series module that allows you to drive a balanced line level signal through the reverb tank in your Fender Twin amp!Vocoloco
The Voco-Loco is a foot-controlled effects loop that enables the lead vocalist, sax or trumpet player to incorporate guitar effects pedals into the signal path, just like an electric guitarist adds effects for soloing.Trimode
The Trimode tube distortion takes you from slight overdrive to full-on distortion. Think Mesa-Boogie in a pedal and switch instantly from rhythm to lead.Vienna Chorus
The Vienna Chorus is vintage bucket-brigade chorus that delivers old-school analog tone. Dual-mode controls lets you switch from slow to fast choral effects like a Leslie.
- 500 SERIES
Choose between Radial's award-winning racks for ultimate control over your signal path. Compatible with all 500 series modules, Radial racks are equipped with extra features for greater connectivity plus resettble electronic fuses to keep your gear safe!Workhorse
The Radial Workhorse is an 8-slot 500 series power rack with a built-in analog summing mixer, headphone amp and extensive patching capabilities.WR8
The Radial WR-8 is an 8-slot power rack that lets you load up to eight 500 series modules. Can be expanded with the WM8 mixer for full Workhorse capabilities.Powerhouse
The Radial Powerhouse is a 10-slot power rack for 500 series modules designed to provide maximum density for professional studio setups.SIXPACK
The Radial SixPack is a desk-top 6-slot power rack for the popular 500 series, designed to create the ultimate channel strip with 1600 milliamps of available current.Cube
The Radial Cube is a desk-top 3-slot power rack for the popular 500 series, designed to create the ultimate channel strip with 500 milliamps of available current.PowerStrip
The Radial Powerstrip is a 3-slot power rack for the popular 500 series, designed to create the ultimate channel strip with 500 milliamps of available current.
Preamps & EQs
Radial gives you a choice between tube and solid state preamps to suit your most demanding recording needs. Compliment them with choice of induction coil or discrete class-A equalizers to add creative soul, sparkle or fat bottom end.POWERPRE
The Radial PowerPre is a 500 series 100% discrete mic preamp with Accustate input control for low noise and transformer coupled output for added warmth.JDV-PRE
The Radial JDV-Pre is a 500 series class-A instrument preamp with variable load for magnetic, piezo and active sources and high-pass filter to eliminate resonance.PowerTube
The Radial Powertube is 500 series 100% discrete class-A preamp with high voltage 12AX7 tube gain stage and transformer coupled input for vintage character.Premax
The Radial PreMax is a 500 series channel strip tha combines a state-of-the-art preamp with a 3-band EQ for easy signal manipulation in post production and recording.Q3
The Radial Q3 is a 500 series induction coil EQ that brings the character and excitement of old-school vintage EQ to your recordings with over 1700 EQ curves.Phaze-Q
The Radial PhaseQ is 500 series phase alignment tool that lets you combine two microphones and bring them into perfect phase for a more natural tone.Twin-Servo
The Radial Jensen Twin-Servo & 500 series preamplifier is an updated version of what may well be the most spectacular preamp ever made.PreComp
The Radial PreComp is a 500 series channel strip that combines a state-of the-art preamp with a full-function VCA compressor for dynamic control over the signal.Q4
The Radial Q4 is a 500 series state-variable, 100% discrete class-A parametric EQ that brings character and warmth to your recordings with minimal artifact
Effects & Routing
The 500 series is all about creative use of signal processing. Radial opens the door with compressors, signal routers, cross-over filters, effects interfaces, phase alignment tools and amp simulators. Finally… amazing tools that let your imagination run wild!EXTC
The Radial EXTC is a 500 series effects send & receive module that lets you incorporate guitar effects into the realm of pro-audio recording.Shuttle
The Radial Shuttle is a 500 series patch and insert panel that lets you bring balanced and unbalanced signals in and out a 500 series power rack.Komit
The Radial Komit is a 500 series one-knob compressor-limiter designed to get great results instantly and add crunch and distortion for unque effects.X-Amp
The Radial X-Amp is a 500 series class-A active Reamper with isolated outputs that lets you send a pre-recorded track to two amps and re-record the new sound.ChainDrive
The Radial ChainDrive is a 500 series signal distribution amplifier that lets you send balanced or unbalanced signals to four outputs and control them independently.Tank Driver
A unique module that lets you to drive a balanced line level signal through the reverb tank in your Fender Twin! Drive spring reverbs of all types and deliver the long trailing shimmering effect that is only possible with a true spring.JDX-500
The Radial JDX Reactor is 500 series guitar amplifier interface that lets you capture the tone of a guitar amp and cabinet without a microphone.Submix
The Radial SubMix is a 500 series mixer that lets you combine 4 instruments such as keyboards or effects into a single audio channel via front panel controls.Tossover
The Radial Tossover is a 500 series frequency divider that lets you separate and process low and high frequencies separately via fully variable controls and slopes.
- CABLES & SNAKES
JX44 Air Control™ Development
The best ideas always come from the users. At Radial, we are blessed with a tremendous number of artists that use our product, many of which do so because of the urging of their stage tech's. The Radial JX44 Air Control is the culmination of ideas, suggestions and creative design from various guitar techs melding minds with our engineering team. This is the story that led to the JX44's development.
In the beginning - the JD7:
It all started in 2001, when we launched the Radial JD7 Injector. The JD7 is a guitar signal buffer and distribution amplifier that was originally intended as a creative tool for the recording studio. The JD7 lets you connect up to 7 guitar amps at once. It soon gained notoriety with bands such as AC/DC, Motorhead, Cheap Trick, Dream Theatre, John Mayer and Slayer and with guitar legends like Joe Perry, Steve Stevens, Steve Lukather, Carlos Santana and Buddy Guy.
On-stage requirements are often very different. Switching guitars and amps between songs must be quick and efficient. And 'who' makes the switching decision depends on the artist's preference, stage setup, and complexity of the performance. This meant looking at options such as how guitarists would use a switcher on stage and how the guitar technician would deal with various problems that could potentially arise during a performance. In more complex stage setups, we noticed that the guitar techs often added other components to the JD7 such as the Radial SGI (Studio Guitar Interface) to allow them to drive long cables to-and-from the pedalboard without noise. And while charting out the feature set, discussions included how one would best manage effects, simplifying programmability to reduce anxiety on stage and of course fail-safe measures to counter problems that may occur during a performance. In became clear... there was a need for a more advanced version of the JD7 that could address the fast paced demands of the live concert environment.
Enter the JX44... Selecting Guitars
Today, most 'concert level' guitarists use wireless systems so that they can freely move around the stage to enhance the performance. The guitar tech will attach a wireless transmitter to the strap which enables him to quickly exchange guitars with the artist between songs. While the artist is performing, the tech can tune the spare guitar and have others in the wings - ready at all times to substitute for a broken string, alternate tuning or enhance a creative moment. To reduce system set-up complexity, several guitar transmitters can share the same receiver. But even in this wireless world, the occasional need for an acoustic guitar or mandolin can also be called upon. And of course let us not forget the purist that refuses to downgrade his tone with any form of wireless voodoo!
After much deliberation, we felt that four guitar inputs would suffice. This would allow the tech to exchange guitars as needed and if more than four guitars were required, he could switch out body packs and cables These would be exclusive. In other words, when one is turned on, the other three would automatically be turned off. This would eliminate noise and allow the guitar tech to connect and disconnect guitars at will without interfering with the live performance.
One of the most important design elements was keeping the JX44 front panel clean and clear from cables that could get in the way and eliminate controls that could be switched my mistake. Showtime is no-time for guessing. We chose to locate most of the connections on the rear panel and added two connectors on the front with front-panel priority switching jacks to allow quick access for a guest artist or a panic situation. Because guitars output signals vary (active, passive, acoustic etc.) we decided to equip inputs A & B with Drag Control™ load correction for passive instruments while inputs C & D would be fitted with a trim control to tame active guitars and balance the signal between instruments.
The innovative Drag Control feature came from the Radial JD7. This allows the user to adjust the load on the pickup to replicate the effect of connecting to a tube guitar amp with a given length of cable. This is particularly important for the purist who expects the signal going to the amps to sound exactly as if connected direct.
Selecting the input also had to be flexible. The guitar tech will usually hit the select button on the JX44 front panel to choose the input. But when the artist is traveling 'light' he may want to have 4 guitars on stage put one down and pick another up. So we configured the JR5 remote footswitch to also work as a guitar selector by automatically changing function depending on which port is connected.
Routing the Effects
When it comes to effects, the options are unlimited. Some guys have 'fridge-sized' racks filled with drawer upon drawer of pedals and elaborate custom control systems. Others use multi-effects processors and studio outboard gear. Then there are the guys that prefer to use standard foot controlled effects pedals; they want them right at their feet on their custom wired pedalboards so that they can chose and combine effects on the fly to reflect the mood of the moment. The JX44 had to work in all environments.
What we did NOT want to do with the JX44 was to create a monster. We wanted it to be a single rack space device that would properly manage the tasks of guitar and amp switching and provide ultra-clean signal buffering. So we decided to make provisions for two different types of effects routing systems: one local and one remote. Local effects send and return are 'guitar level' and use standard ¼" jacks. This can be used to interface with any number of effects controllers or multi-effects processors that abound and the effects loop can be assigned to any one or all of the amplifiers. In fact, depending on how you program the JX44, the JR5 footswitch can be configured to remotely turn on the effects bus.
For pedalboards, another solution was needed. Most players know that when you extend a Hi-Z cable longer than 25 feet, noise has a nasty habit of getting into your system. Stages are filled with noise-causing devices such as power transformers, dimmers, digital controllers and LCD screens. The longer the cable, the more prone to noise the system will be. In large scale concerts, the guitar is typically equipped with a wireless transmitter that beams the signal to the receivers somewhere off stage. The signal then has to go from the transmitters, to the pedalboard at the front of the stage, through the pedals then back, under the stage, to the amps. If you were to measure the distance from the wireless to the pedals and back to the amps, you can easily total over 50 meters (150'). To address this problem, we decided to incorporate a special version of the Radial SGI - Studio Guitar Interface, called the SGI-44 into the JX44.
The Radial SGI is a proprietary balanced interface that can transmit the guitar signal via standard XLR cables to over 100 meters (300') without noise or tonal degradation. At the pedalboard, the second optional SGI-44 unbalances the signal for the effects pedals and then takes the output from the pedalboard and returns the signal to the JX44. For fun we even added a separately buffered tuner-out so that the artist can monitor his tuning on the fly.
Ask any tone fanatic 'how many amps he would like on stage?' The answer is simple: A different one for every song! But how many amps do you really need? Maybe one amp for your clean tone, one for chunky rhythm and maybe another for soloing… and for fun, how about one more just because you can!
We settled on four amps with a total of six outputs. Outputs A and B are mono while outputs C and D are doubled-up to allow bands like AC/DC and Motorhead to have a wall of Marshall stacks on stage. With the JX44 'fully wired', you could connect a Twin for your clean tone on output-A. For your crunchy rhythm tone, you could set up a nice tube amp like a THD or Boogie on output-B and for soloing you could connect a pair of Marshall JCM800s using output-C and route your effects using output-D. To ensure any amp could be connected with any other amp without noise, all outputs are transformer isolated to eliminate ground loops and equipped with a 180º polarity reverse switch so that they could all play in phase.
The next question had to do with controlling the amplifiers. Who turns them on and off during a show? Ask Santana's guitar tech Ed Adair and he will tell you that Carlos will select the amp and tone based on how he feels at a given moment. The decision is fluid. For other artists, the amp selection is choreographed precisely for each song and part of the guitar tech's nightly task is to ensure the right amp is on at the right time. The JX44 accommodates both camps.
In the simplest form, the Radial JX44 uses basic on-off footswitches for each amp so that the artist can turn on or off any amp at will. At the other extreme, the JX44 can provide programmability whereby various amp scenes can be preset and recalled at will. This is accomplished by incorporating a PIC ("Programmable Interrupt Controller") inside both the JX44 and JR5 remote pedal that send the control commands to the switch relays and retains the non-volatile memory to let you set up various scenes. Amp selection can be done by the tech using the front panel switches or by the guitarist via the JR5 remote footswitch. This way, you can be playing through amp-1 and by depressing footswitch-2, amp-1 can be turned off and amps 2, 3 and 4 can be turned on. Hit footswitch-1 and you can be back to amp-1. No tap dancing.
Because the JR5 footswitch would likely reside on a pedalboard like the Boneyard, we designed it with two standard 3-pin XLR connectors so that the remote cable could exit at either side of the pedalboard to adapt to more setups. Mic cables are easily found, easily repaired and can be extended to suit various stage sizes. This made sense as opposed to using some weird multipin connector. We also made it possible for the amp selector footswitch to remotely mute the system so that the guitarist could check his tuner at any time should a string be out.
Re-amplifying for post production:
Today, it is very common for bands to record their performances live and then go back into the studio to mix the various concerts in post production. A wonderful feature that we built into the Radial JD7 was the ability to re-amplify the signal in post production. We felt the JX44 should also be able to do the same. The process is simple: while you are recording your guitar track, take a 'dry' feed from the JX44's DI box output and record a clean track. After you are done recording, take the 'clean' track and send it back into the JX44 using the built-in X-Amp™ which can then drive several amps and pedals. Reamping has many advantages: First, if you are a guitarist, you can concentrate on your playing and worry about the recorded tone later. Second, if you make a mistake, it is easy to fix a clean note in ProTools and Reamp the track as needed. Best of all, you can use the JX44 to create new and exciting tone textures that have up until now been elusive.
The built-in direct box
This led us to think about how the JX44 would be used 'live'. What if the guitarist has an acoustic guitar? Where would this connect? Should the signal go to his guitar amplifier or go to a separate channel on the PA system? What if a bass player is using the JX44 and had to switch to an upright bass. How will he set his rig up? It became clear that the Radial JX44 had to be equipped with an assignable direct box. To accommodate acoustic instruments, input-4 could be able to be assigned to the direct box output. This way you could mute all the amps and have the acoustic go directly to the PA system. For Reamping, you could route all four inputs go to the DI out by hitting a switch. This way, the JX44 could be used for recording the show or specifically designated to a separate channel on the console for acoustic guitar or upright bass.
Truth is… wireless systems are prone to problems. These can occur due boundaries in the room, the abundance of interference from radio broadcast, CBs and taxies and the ever increasing use of airwaves for cell phones, blue tooth and wireless internet. But this is only one facet the guitar tech must prepare for… All electronic devices whether they are guitars, amps, effects and even ye virtuous Radial JX44 can fail. So what do you do when 20,000 screaming fans are out there waiting for the next screaming solo and the guitar stops working? In a word… panic. In fact, the difference between professionals and non-pros often comes down to preparation. Pros don't panic… they avert disaster by being prepared.
To solve the problem we introduced a panic button on the front panel. This 'hardwires' input-A to amp output-1 so that in the event a wireless system goes down, the guitar tech can quickly grab a guitar and a cable, run out to the artist and have him up and working in seconds. This provides the guitar tech with a simple yet effective 'get out of jail' card of sorts. And if for some reason the JX44 itself goes awry, even without power, the same 'default' setting will jump into place and automatically route the guitar signal to the amp. The show will go on.
Then we thought about tuning… What happens if the artist decides he wants to tune between songs? How does the tech manage the tuning? Who will mute the guitar? To address the multitude of possibilities, we incorporated a ton of options.
If the JX44 is being used by itself, you can connect the tuner to the rear panel and mute the JX44 using the mute switch on the front panel. Once depressed, all outputs will be muted except for the tuner and the SGI-44 send. For added convenience, you can connect a standard momentary switch (like a sustain pedal) the mute remote control jack on the rear panel and this will also mute the signal. This would accommodate a guitarist on a smaller stage. If you have a JR5 footswitch connected to the amps, you can mute the signal by depressing the center mute switch. This would of course allow the player to both control amps and mute. If the JR5 is connected to the 'Guitars' jack to control guitar switching, pressing the switch on a selected guitar will mute it.
To go one step further, the SGI-44 enables the player that wants to have a tuner at his pedalboard. The SGI-44 is equipped with a tuner out that lets you monitor tuning on the fly. When one of the three mute switches are depressed, the signal going to the amps and PA will mute leaving the on-board tuner out and SGI-44 tuner out unaffected.
During a show, when things are flying around break-neck speeds, the guitar tech needs to know exactly what is going on at all timers. To address this, we brought all of the main control status LEDs together into one zone called System Monitor. This allows the tech to scan the panel quickly to ensure the system is configured properly. There are even two LEDs that will flash every 8 seconds to let you know if the remote footswitches are happy.
To sum up, there has been a tremendous amount of thought put into the development of the JX44 and over two years of experimentation to get it right. But the wait was worthwhile. The Radial JX44 represents a true milestone in guitar signal management for the most demanding professional.