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Marshall JVM410H Review – Possibly The Best Value Tube Amp!

Hello there and welcome back to yet another excellent review article for you! This time we will be looking at possibly the best, the most affordable and versatile guitar amplifier, the Marshall JVM410H!

In this Marshall JVM410H review, I will introduce the iconic, legendary Marshall Amplification company and its flagship tube amplifier as well as a nice demo of the amp and many more!

Marshall Amplification

For those who have never heard of Marshall Amplification (I bet a few people there would be!), here’s a quick introduction. Marshall Amplification is a British company founded by Jim Marshall and his son Terry in 1960 as a family-run business under the name Jim Marshall and Son. Most of the stores in the business were servicing jazz musicians since it was the hype, but Marshall store found a different niche by attracting rock musicians and building its reputation.

They quickly became the leading amplifier store in the region. Back in the day, it was not easy to find amplifiers for rock guitarists so they decided to come up with their own design. Oddly enough, Jim Marshall was a drummer, and Terry (who is a service engineer) was a sax player. None of them really could play the guitar. They started experimenting with different components and tried to come up with their own design using their non-guitarist ears.

Jim Marshall The Father of Loud!
Jim Marshall The Father of Loud!

Their first amplifier was JTM45 which stood for Jim & Terry Marshall! That was the moment they started to redefine the sound of the blues and rock that would span across decades and still rocking strong!

Almost all legendary guitar heroes played Marshalls such as Jimi Hendrix, Jimmy Page, Slash, Eric Clapton, Graham Coxon, Zakk Wylde, Angus Young, Joe Perry, Simon Neil, Joe Trohman, Noel Gallagher, Lzzy Hale, Sid Glover, Joe Bonamassa, Jeff Beck and many more. The list would be endless!!!

Why Get a Tube Amp?

If you are one of my regular visitors here, you would probably know my journey with the gear! As a former MI professional and lifelong passionate electric guitar player, I’m naturally addicted to gear. Even though I would like to keep things simple, I can’t help but spend my hard-earned cash and valuable time exploring more gear. 🙂

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I don’t think you are a stranger to this feeling if you are an electric guitar player. Having said that, I was doing pretty good about stopping myself from buying so much gear for a long time. But in order to experience the best sensation that an electric guitar player can, I went for it and got myself a 100W tube amp!

I got myself a Marshall JVM410H and a Red Seven Amp Central! In my humble opinion, the ultimate sensation that a guitar player can experience is to play your favourite guitars with proper tube amps at pretty high volume levels and feel the smashing power of these rigs in the leanest way possible.

Marshall JVM410H
Marshall JVM410H

However, this is not more than a dream for almost all of us due to noise issues, budget, and living in an apartment with other people around. But there’s still hope to experience the most realistic playing feel at home levels.

As you may notice on YouTube, there are many guitar players now playing their loud tube amps with load boxes + IR loaders. This basically means that one doesn’t need to connect a tube guitar amplifier to a speaker cabinet and instead uses a load box that acts as the speaker cabinet and record/plays using impulse responses.

So in order to experience this, I decided to go for a tube amp. While researching various heads from leading amp manufacturers, I noticed the infamous JVM410H head was still in production and possibly the best option in terms of price tag, versatility and high value/money ratio.

The decision was pretty easy to make as I used to play Marshall JVM205C while recording hundreds of guitars during my service in the musical instruments business. I would play the amp for hours, sometimes even every day!

Check out my Marshall JVM205C review here

While thinking about every other option out there, I suddenly realised that most tube amps would bust my bank so I started checking out more affordable yet industry-standard tube amps. Having played the JVM205C for a long time, I made my decision and went for it!

Before we dive into details, first let’s have a look at the tech specs of Marshall JVM410H below.

Marshall JVM410H Tech Specs

Channels4 Channels with 3 different modes
Output wattage100W
OutputsOutputs
Speaker outputs: 5 x 1/4" jack sockets (16Ω load / 8Ω load / 4Ω load), Emulated Line Out (XLR), MIDI Thru
Inputs1 x 1/4" jack instrument input, MIDI In, Footswitch
ControlsChannel and mode select (button), gain, treble, middle, bass, reverb , presence, resonance,
master volume select, master volume (switchable for each channel)
EffectsDigital reverb
Effects loop2, 1 x series parallel, 1 x series
Preamp valves4 x ECC83, 1 x ECC83 (phase splitter)
Power amp valves4 x EL34
FootswitchPEDL-91016 included
CableDetachable power cable included
Weight22 kg / 49 lbs
Width740 mm / 29.1"
Height310 mm / 12.2"
Depth215 mm / 8.5"

Marshall JVM410H Features

Marshall JVM series amplifiers have various versions, you can buy head versions as well as many combo versions with different variations. Marshall JVM410H is the top-of-the-line head version featuring 100W power and 4 channels with 3 different gain stages.

It has 4 EL34 tubes power amp tubes and 5 ECC83 preamp tubes (one being a phase inverter). So beware that replacing tubes in the far future will cost you some money! 🙂

It has 5 speaker outputs featuring a pair of 1×4 Ohm, 2×8 Ohm and 2×16 Ohm, so you have the ultimate freedom to connect any guitar speakers in the market.

JVM410H also features Channel and Mode select buttons on each channel with gain, treble, middle, and bass controls as well as reverb, presence, and resonance controls and a master volume select button, master volume (switchable for each channel). Note that the reverb is a digital one!

However, according to Marshall, it is tube-buffered.

Marshall also did not hesitate to add serial and parallel FX loop to this magnificent head amp so you can use your time-based effects in there as well as connect your external preamps. Like any other JVM series amplifier, Marshall JVM410H also comes with a footswitch which is a Marshall PEDL-91016.

Marshall JVM410H Side
Marshall JVM410H review!

12 Different Sounds

Marshall JVM410H features 4 channels with 3 different gain stages for each of them! You basically have 12 different sounds to choose from! Apart from having 4 different channels, being able to adjust the gain stages and engage different classic Marshall preamp circuits in these channels is an awesome feature!

Channels

Clean Channel

When this channel is selected with Green mode, it gives you the cleanest tones you could ever ask from a Marshall. It’s a very chimey, pure and sweet-sounding clean sound. Note that, the volume control is disabled so you can only increase the volume with the gain knob.

If you use Orange and Red modes, the volume knob is activated and can be used to adjust the channel volume. With Orange mode, you get more punch and easier-to-drive sounds. Last but not least, with the Red mode, you can add another gain stage on top and get the most drive out of the clean channel.

Crunch Channel

Up next, we have a really cool crunch channel that features 3 different Marshall preamp circuits (designed as a classic gain + tone approach). On the Green mode, you have a JTM/1959 Plexi circuits with gain + gain + tone stack. The gain and response are pretty much identical to those legendary circuits but with more added gain.

On the Orange mode, this time you have the JCM800 2203 circuit with gain + gain + gain + tone stack. When Red mode is activated, you still get the same circuit but also the gain characteristics of a hot-rodded JCM800.

Marshall JVM410H Side Closeup
12 Different Sounds!

OD1 Channel

Next, you have the infamous OD1 channel which is possibly the most loved channel on this amp! This time we start with similar gain characteristics coming from the Crunch channel with the Green mode on the OD1 channel.

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When the Orange mode is activated on the OD1, you get another gain stage on top of this and easily get hard rock and heavy metal tones that you are familiar with if you are listening to those genres. When the Red mode is activated, you simply add more gain on top of this gain structure.

OD2 Channel

Lastly, you have the OD2 channel which is a similar channel to the OD1 but even more gain and with shifted mids (centred around 500Hz). Marshalls usually have this mid-centre value of around 500Hz. As with other channels, once the Orange and Red modes are activated, you add more gain stages on top of this tone circuit.

Excellent Sounding Digital Reverb

JVM410H also features a digital reverb that you can separate and activate for each channel and also control with the included footswitch. This reverb is routed in parallel to the main signal path but mixed with a valve.

Master Volume

This is one of the best features of this loud amp! Having master volume really helps with adjusting the overall volume out of the amp. But with JVM410H, you have 2 master volume controls that you can even adjust and program so you can use them as a volume boost too!

Master 1 is the default volume that is impacting all channels. However, Master 2 can be used to program the volume boost on any channel by programming it with the front panel buttons.

You basically need to select the channel/mode activate the Master 2 button then switch out of the mode. When you come back to this channel, the amp will recall which master volume you were using. Note that, this feature is only to recall whether Master 1 or Master 2 was selected on a specific channel. It doesn’t recall the level of the Master volumes.

Presence and Resonance

As with any great valve amp, you also have your presence and resonance controls on the Marshall JVM410H! Presence is basically used for adjusting the high frequencies of the power amp.  There is also the Resonance control to adjust the lower frequencies of the power amp.

Silent Recording Feature

Marshall JVM410H also features a silent recording feature that you can use for direct recording via the emulated output on the back. In order to use this feature, the stand-by switch should be OFF. When used, the power amp is disabled and can be safely used without attaching a speaker cabinet to the amp’s out.

Footswitch

With any JVM series amplifier, you also get the relevant footswitch. With 410 models including the head and the combo versions, you get Marshall PEDL-91016 and with the rest of the JVM series, you get Marshall PEDL-91006 version.

Marshall JVM410H Footswitch Top
Marshall PEDL-91016 included footswitch

Mine came with two guitar cables which are very low quality, however, I believe these are only aimed at the footswitch. But not sure why I have two cables. I don’t think the extra one should be used by any serious players.

Marshall JVM410H Cables Included
Marshall JVM410H footswitch cable(s)? – I got 2!

Marshall JVM410H Demo Videos

Before we dive into my review of Marshall JVM410H, I would like to share multiple videos that feature my Marshall JVM410H. Initially, I was planning to record all the channels and modes of JVM410H with every guitar I own.

But it turned out to be a very demanding task! So instead, I have decided to publish this article and already provided you with all the relevant videos that I produced using my Marshall JVM410H, Red Seven Amp Central IR Loader/Load Box directly into my RME Babyface PRO audio interface.

In most videos below, I used the built-in reverb on the amp as well as added some tiny room reverbs by Eventide.

I will prepare a special video of my Marshall JVM410H, featuring all my guitars and will be updating this article. You can also have a look at the playlist I created for JVM410H which includes every single video that this amp is used in.

Marshall JVM410H with Schecter Solo II Custom ABSN

Marshall JVM410H with Epiphone Les Paul Custom

Marshall JVM410H with Charvel Pro Mod DK24

Marshall JVM410H with Cort G300 Raw

Marshall JVM410H Review

As I mentioned, having a proper tube/valve amp was the ultimate thing for me to experience. I have been playing the guitar since 1999 and haven’t had so many opportunities to get one for myself. But from time to time I experienced tube amps and always loved them. As you may know, it’s almost impossible to play these amps at home without a load box or attenuator.

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I even think that it’s not even possible to play a solid-state amp as well if you live in a small apartment. Everything can get really loud in a small place. But luckily we live in one of the best eras for electric guitar gear! We have access to entire possibilities from dead silent guitar playing and recording with guitar amp software to being able to play tube amps!

So I wanted to experience this by using a high-quality reactive load box and IR loader. As I mentioned in the article, I got myself a wonderful RedSeven Amplification Amp Central reactive load and IR loader and I’m in love with this combination!

Check out RedSeven Amplification Amp Central review here

Feels Like Home!

In my opinion, Marshall JVM410H is probably the best value tube amp in the market. Especially if you consider when this series was first released, there are not many options to get this much power, channel and switching options at this price tag.

As I kept mentioning in my other articles as well I played the Marshall JVM205C for a long time during my service in the musical instruments business. I also listened to countless records and artists that use Marshall amps so getting this amp felt like home!

Extreme Versatility

Even though people on the internet claim that you can’t have all Marshall sound in a single head or this amp can’t sound like the Marshall that was made in some odd year, I disagree and claim that JVM410H has probably the most versatile tube amp that covers so much ground in terms of Marshall sound and beyond!

I kept hearing from people that there is so much gain, this channel is not usable…etc, however, I find these comments pretty weird. They give you all the options and if you spend some time on each channel and mode, not to mention keep tweaking everything on the amp, on your guitars, IRs or guitar speakers, you will realise how much this amp can cover!

I think it’s madness that they sell this amp at an extremely affordable price tag (talking about EU prices, sorry friends on the other side of the pond!).

The clean channel is probably the sweetest clean channel I ever tried! It sounds warm, round and very mellow (if you want!) and can be also used as a pretty good crunch channel and for any kind of rhythm sounds. Add your favourite boosters, overdrive and distortion pedals and you already have multiple channels to work with!

Clean channel reacts so well with pedals and I can really hear all the differences of my guitar pedals! Check out the video I made for Electro Harmonix 720 Stereo Looper featuring my JVM410H and Epiphone Les Paul Custom Ebony. I used the Ibanez Tube Screamer Mini and Boss SD-1 and couldn’t stop playing for an hour while shooting that video!

Crunch channel also offers a lot of sweet sounds. Most metalheads would skip this channel but please don’t! Try to add your pedals on top of the gain structure and you will be amazed at how many different heavy sounds you can get from it!

People usually just turn the gain at max on red mode and see how much gain it generates. However, the green and orange modes shouldn’t be ignored as well. It has so much variety for lower gain options and the notes have a unique weight to them.

OD1 channel with the orange mode is probably the best thing about this amp and is most loved by rock/metal players, but still please don’t ignore the red and green modes and try to adjust the gain and add your boost/distortion pedals on top of these. It has the distinct Marshall hi-gain sounds and is probably the most used channel on this amp.

OD2 also sounds excellent and I must say, I wouldn’t say it is worse than the OD1 or not usable! I think it has the same weight as OD1 and offers crazy versatility!

Contrary to popular belief, I think Marshall JVM410H offers you a full-blown experience with Marshall tones and beyond from pristine cleans, pushed/overdriven cleans, a very wide array of crunch sounds with different weights for single and multiple notes playing as well as unique reactions to your fingertips to brutal sounding rhythm and lead hi-gain sound while still offering you a great pedal platform not just for clean channel but also for the all the channel and the modes!

Noise Issues and Too Much Gain?

As you may already have read on the internet, most people complain about the noise. This amp is definitely not quiet and you have this constant hiss but I did not notice any uncontrollable noise with any channels.

The only problem is that since I live in a very small living room and literally sit next to the amp, it sometimes gives me crazy feedback! But this is very normal to me and I have no complaints about this.

I think every electric guitarist should have the habit of turning off the volume pot on their guitar right after they have played a part. I’m lucky to have this habit and never hear these feedback noises when I approach the amp closer.

There’s also a complaint about the amp offering too much gain. I think it’s a bit exaggerated comment. They provide you with a bit too much gain spectrum that one should ever need. But it’s usually the case in most amps, you don’t want to maximise gain and expect everything to stay the same. Amps and preamps have sweet spots and one should learn their way to stay around those locations.

My ENGL E570 tube preamp has extreme amounts of gain, especially when you activate hi-gain mode on Lead 1 and Lead 2 channels. When you are on this mode and also maximise the gain, it gives you a crazy amount of compressed gain, still very low noise and can be used for something extreme, but it’s not something you would ever need.

The same goes for JVM410H. If you are on the OD1 or OD2, and select the highest gain staging, then maximise the gain, you should expect some mud! 🙂 Try to lower the gain for the highest gain staging modes, adjust other parameters on the amp, add boost pedals and you will see how much this amp offers in terms of versatility!

Digital Reverb

There’s also a digital reverb feature on this amp that can be adjusted for each channel individually and activated by a footswitch. I think this reverb sounds amazing, especially if you consider the era when this was amp first released. Even though I don’t use it all the time, it’s good to have this option!

FX Loop Issues

As you may know, this amp has two loops, one serial/parallel FX loop and the other one is a serial power amp insert. I tested both for different purposes and had no issues with using the power amp insert for my Mesa Boogie TriAxis preamp. It sounded great!

However, the FX Loop acted a bit weird when I tried to use my EHX 720 Stereo Looper. There was a volume drop when I maxed out the Mix pot. But when I adjusted it around 50%, it sounded balanced.

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Many people complained about this and some people also explained this situation on the forums. It may be that the pedals we are attaching here have different output levels that are not compatible with the loop. I have had only this experience with my looper pedal and had no experience with any time-based effects in the loop. So can’t say if this is a bad design or anything as of yet.

Footswitch Issue

As I mentioned, I played the JVM205C version for a long time and always used the footswitch to change channels and modes. I’m not 100% sure but I remember that the orange modes had actual orange-coloured LEDs on the footswitch. Please correct me if I’m making this up because I pretty much remember this very clearly, but maybe it was a long time ago and I started making these up :).

The footswitch that came with my Marshall JVM410H has almost a light green colour for orange modes, solid green for green modes and solid red for red modes. It’s sometimes really difficult to distinguish the orange modes and I don’t understand why and how this design decision was made to save how much cents.

Weirdly, orange modes are light green on the footswitch. I hope it’s only my footswitch but I wouldn’t invest my money to buy another one and compare. I may contact Marshall though! 🙂

Note that unlike the amp was made in the UK, the footswitch is made in Vietnam.

Marshall JVM410H Footswitch Made in Vietnam
Footswitch – Made in Vietnam

Mine has also had slight quality issues regarding the non-slip material at the bottom. You can check out how it looks below, not a big issue as the LED colour! 🙂

Marshall JVM410H Footswitch Bad Craftsmanship
Footswitch Bad Craftsmanship :/

I must say Marshall JVM410H has been probably the highest-value purchase I have ever made for years! I’m not saying this just for the sake of money spent/channels and modes on the amp, but how much it has been inspiring for me as a bedroom guitar player. I have started playing my guitar way more than ever and am always looking forward to switching on my JVM.

I know most people think it’s stupid to buy a tube amp, it’s not necessary, you have plugins, you have excellent processors and it’s extremely heavy….etc, and I agree, we have all the options out there.

But the most important thing is the inspiration to pick up the guitar for me. I’m a gearhead, severely addicted to gear and guitars and have been spending all my money and time on these. So you can really trust me about how inspiring my Marshall JVM410H has been! I got that feeling before but that usually faded out quickly!

I also don’t agree with the fact that it’s so heavy! Yes, it’s heavy but it’s not unless you need to carry this around all day long! I believe tube amps are a great option for people who play at home or in a studio all day long! I’d personally definitely stay away from heavy gear if I needed to gig in multiple locations in a month, but that’s not the case for me! 🙂

I highly recommend you make up your mind and get yourself a Marshall JVM410H before they go extinct! Don’t forget to get a speaker cab (if you are allowed to play this amp loud!) or a proper reactive load. I got both RedSeven Amp Central and Two Notes Torpedo Captor (check this out if you are on a tight budget), but you can also check out other models such as Suhr Reactive IR, Two Notes Captor X or Fryette Power Load IR.

Where to Buy Marshall JVM410H?

As always, I bought mine from Thomann very recently and I can highly recommend them as they usually offer the best prices in the EU and they always have everything in stock!

Check out price and availability of Marshall JVM410H at Thomann

However, feel free to check out Reverb.com as well as you may find great offers in the used market. There are sometimes crazy deals on these amps in the used market as well. I didn’t want to go for this route as it’s a tube amp. But it’s up to you!

Check out price and availability of Marshall JVM410H at Reverb

I hope you find this Marshall JVM410H review article honest and insightful! Thanks for visiting my blog and supporting me so far! I will hopefully see you in the next review here!

Osman Cenan Çiğil – cigilovic.com


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