The JHS Show is adored by guitarists for a variety of reasons: Josh Scott’s unfathomable pedal collection, the zany sense of humor shared by its cast and crew and, of course, those gorgeous tones, all delivered via the Milkman Sound JHS “Loud is More Good” tube amp, which features in the foreground of countless video jams – except that isn’t actually the case.
In a new episode of The JHS Show titled “How the Kemper Replaced My Amp”, Scott reveals he has been using a Kemper amp modeler for the series’ tones since September 2021 – and, as he sagely notes, nobody noticed. Which, in some ways, makes it the most conclusive – and, certainly, the most ambitious – blind test of modeling vs real amps yet undertaken.
“We’ve been just not really turning it on,” Scott explains of the “Loud is More Good” combo’s purely aesthetic presence in the videos.
“We turn it on, but it’s on standby, and if you’ve paid any attention you’ll see that the knobs are down and stuff because we got lazy. The Kemper just let us be lazy; it was more creating, less doing.”
Of course, Scott is a canny marketer, and the video was, in part, created to announce the release of his new amp profile packs, which have been created in collaboration with ToneJunkie TV and are available for Kemper and Line 6 Helix/HX devices.
The Josh’s Favorite Amps Pack includes eight profiles of, well, Josh’s favorite real-world amps, and is available from JHS Pedals for $39 (Kemper) or $25 (Helix). It includes profiles of the following:
- 1993 Fender Blues Deluxe
- 1963 Fender Blonde Bassman Combo
- 1963 Vox AC30
- Marshall JCM 800
- Sovtek Mig 50 Josh’s #1
- Sovtek Mig 50 Josh’s Tone
- Sears Twin Twelve 1484
- Gibson Skylark
But perhaps more excitingly, JHS’s trademark Milkman “Loud is More Good” amp is also available as a completely free download, either as nine Kemper profiles, or one Helix patch with a tone-matched IR. Given Scott describes it as the “perfect pedal platform”, that sounds like a pretty good deal to us.
In his closing thoughts on the concealment and subsequent reveal of his tonal truth, Scott surmises, “I’m not ashamed – I’m not embarrassed that I’ve been using a Kemper for over a year, because all of you enjoyed it, and it was helpful to me: in this situation, where we film, how we do this, it was really, really great to use.
“Is it gonna replace all my favorite amps? No, not at all. Is it gonna replace yours? No, that’s insane. It is, however, a really good tool, and I think you’ll enjoy these profile packs.”
You can get a pretty good idea of how much you’ll enjoy said packs in the video below, where Scott goes on to examine each of the profiles in more detail.
Where this leaves the tubes vs modeling debate remains to be seen, but if you need proof of Scott’s ability to influence the thoughts and minds of guitarists, look no further than Sweetwater’s best-selling effects pedal of all time, which was directly impacted by one of his own videos.