The pedal that we are going to discuss today is produced by the brand that has been renowned for a while now. Many musicians have encountered Ernie Ball, but probably because of their strings. It will be hard for you to find a band that does not utilize their accessories due to their reliability. However, strings are not the only thing they focus on. They have a wide range of tuners, effects pedals, guitar straps and cables and etc. They basically sell all the small things that are needed to make your instrument sound better. Today we are going to focus on volume pedals only, particularly their VP JR 6180 250K. It has many features that have turned it into a staple for numerous prominent musicians. Though fame does not usually guarantee the quality, there is a reason why gigging guitarists trust this brand. In this article I will display its benefits and flaws, discuss the sound of this baby and give you the possibility to make up your own mind. After all, we all need different things to amplify our performance. Since I do not want to take up any more of your time, let’s get right to the point and explore all the specifics!
Be it the website of the brand or their advertisement somewhere else, the very thing they try to market is the size of the pedal. VP JR 250K is supposed to be 22% smaller than the original, but those who have owned the full-size version, the difference between the two might not be that impressive. This baby is still quite long and bulky and will take up a real-estate on your pedalboard (at least more than I would personally like it to). But that might not be an issue for many, since bigger footprint does also mean that your whole foot can fit on the rocker i.e. you have more control over your sound. More importantly, VP JR 250K is designed to work with passive pickups a.k.a. the ones that do not need any power in order to operate. If you do not have such pickups on your guitar, you might want to look elsewhere. But if you do, this baby has 250K potentiometer that has perfect resistance to suit your instrument. The build quality here is rather nice, but there is one thing to consider: it has a string that connects the rocker to the pedal, which might break unexpectedly after some heavy utilization. VP JR 250K is also equipped with a tuner output, which allows you to avoid tone suction from tuners that are not true bypass. This is one of the best ways to make sure your higher frequencies are not affected while tuning. On the whole, VP JR 250K is equipped with the essential features that will help you alter your sound in many different ways. Though it is not the most multi-faceted volume pedal out there, it does not lack any major properties. Good job, Ernie Balls!
Let me tell you that the control section is the most boring thing for this pedal. To be more precise, it is the emptiest, since there is not much to say. The same thing goes for the majority of volume pedals so do not think that this is a flaw by any means. In a sense it is even a good thing, since things get so much easier than they would be otherwise. And plus, volume pedals have to do one single job i.e. change the level of your signal smoothly and until they do that, there is absolutely nothing to complain about.
Ernie Ball VP JR 250K has a taper and a switch for controlling your sound. The rocker pedal moves from heel to toe position and allows you to subtly change the level of your tone. You simply have to know how to press it and you are guaranteed to receive gradual shifts from high to low volumes. The other thing that you can tweak here is a little switch situated under the foot plate on the back of the jack board. This control allows you to boost your signal ever so slightly and create more dimension. Since there is nothing else to fuss around with, this baby is the sort of pedal that you simply plug in and start playing. Useful, yet simple – what else do we need?
I am pretty sure all of you appreciate that soul soothing roll back of the volume on your guitar. That subtle and gradual transition is what we search in every single device. And the good news is, Ernie Ball VP JR 250K can deliver that at all times. It does not change the original characteristics of your sound – it simply alters the volume. Depending on its position in the signal chain, it can act as a boost to your whole signal or shape its level towards the end of the rig. It can help you distort your sound better or balance out your already distorted one. Either way, it is completely up to your chain and preferences. VP JR 250K has smooth operation that allows you to create dynamics in your performance. Nobody wants their pieces to be lackluster without any body or shape. This baby will be an amazing addition to your collection if you are looking for a simple volume pedal. In the sonic region, it does not have any flaws so do not even worry about that.
The final verdict for Ernie Ball VP JR 6180 250K potentiometer is that it is an amazing simple tool for changing the level of your sound without having to reach for the volume control on your guitar. It is rather simple to operate, especially if you know how to treat the taper. And even if you do not, you will learn quickly enough. This baby will help you sound more professional and even push you to experiment some more and find interesting features. Good luck!
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