Jackson Audio Pedals Switch Latency?

Do Jackson Audio pedals have a latency, lag or delay when switching them on? That’s the question we are addressing today.

I’ve noticed on various forums, Reddit guitar groups, and Facebook groups that people have been asking about a switch latency regarding Jackson Audio pedals. Essentially, what’s being asked is about a slight delay when you click on the foot switch of Jackson Audio pedal and it actually engaging.

I’m a big fan of Jackson Audio pedals and have been using them extensively. While I don’t own them all, I currently own these:

  • Golden Boy
  • Asabi
  • Bloom V2
  • Broken Arrow V2
  • Optimist

The only reason I don’t own the Modular Fuzz is that they decided to release that one without MIDI control. MIDI is really important to me, so had they launched that one with MIDI I would already have it. I’m hoping for a V2 version soon and I’ll definitely buy it. I’m also considering the New Wave chorus / vibrato. Thing is, I just bought a Chase Bliss Warped Vinyl HiFi and a Strymon Zelzah Midnight Edition, so I’m holding off on modulation pedals for a bit.

Cory Wong The Optimist Jackson Audio

Anyway, back on topic…Jackson Audio pedals switch latency

I haven’t tried all their pedals, but in regards to the ones listed above, there’s latency on Jackson Audio pedals when switching them on with the foot switches. However, it isn’t because it lags, but rather because the relay switch engages on the foot switch’s release, or upstroke. The effect doesn’t engage on the button press, or downstroke, as is more common. No matter how fast you are with the clicking of the foot switches, you have to wait for the switch to come down and back up for the effect to engage.

I think the reason for this is so that the extra features of switch long-presses work. I’m talking about the long presses for switching between clipping modes and such. It may also have something to do with the gain cycle functions of pressing two switches at the same time.

Is there a delay when using Jackson Audio pedals with MIDI?

This latency in switching Jackson Audio pedals is not an issue when switching with MIDI. I’ve done a lot of testing and the pedals engage almost instantaneously when using MIDI to switch them on. To me, that’s the solution right there. But I understand, not every guitarist uses MIDI.

I don’t like this latency to be honest, but I like the pedals a lot. For this reason I’ve learned to live with it. In my case, I try to incorporate my Jackson Audio Bloom V2, Asabi and Golden Boy in a rig that switches using a Morningstar MC8 MIDI controller. I try to exclusively use them with MIDI.

My Jackson Audio Cory Wong Optimist is one that I acquired recently and it has quickly become one of my favorites. That one’s also going to be used with MIDI, however, it’s going into a compact rig that will use a Line6 HX Stomp XL as the main MIDI control system.

Is this really necessary? How about other examples?

While I think that the reason for the pedals’ use of the switch release to engage the effect is because of the extra functions, Strymon pedals use soft-switching too and extra functions, yet they switch on instantaneously on the down press.

To give you can example, on the Strymon Flint V2, you have to hold down the reverb switch down to enter editing mode. The edit mode on it is a lot more extensive than that of the Jackson Audio pedals and not something you might use often on the fly. But even with that, the Flint V2, and pedals such as the Sunset, Riverside and El Capistan V2 all engage immediately on switch press.

Conclusions and solutions…

I do hope to see Jackson Audio improve on this on upcoming releases. That said, it won’t improve the pedals already released since they don’t feature firmware updates. The way they work is is pretty much set in stone. Regardless, I do really love my Jackson Audio pedals and have successfully incorporated them into my playing by using MIDI control or by not relying on abrupt switching in the middle of songs unless there is a rest that allows it.

It’s pretty obvious I really like the overdrives as they sound stellar. To give you a better idea, I do bring up the Jackson Audio Golden Boy, Asabi and Broken Arrow V2 in my overdrives list on my Browne Protein Overdrive Review.

You can see the pedals I mention here and other offerings over on their website: Jackson Audio

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