Jackson Audio Bloom V2 MIDI Compressor Pedal
Jackson Audio Bloom V2 MIDI Compressor Pedal
Overview by GAK
Jackson Audio’s Bloom v2 is 3 powerful & independent effect circuits - an optical compressor, a studio-grade EQ circuit and a transparent booster/sustainer - in 1 compact stompbox. As of v2, the Bloom is MIDI-enabled which provides extra performance flexibility. This fantastic pedal is a one-stop solution for your compression, tone-sculpting and boosting needs.
Quality Optical Compressor
First up, we have the Bloom’s jaw-dropping compressor circuit. The Bloom’s compressor boasts an optical limiting circuit, which is inspired by the legendary LA-2A and features a wide dynamic range. Just like the original unit and other valve-based compressors from that golden era, the Bloom delivers a beautifully subtle and transparent tone. Whilst Bloom is easily capable of a more intense & aggressive response when pushed to its limits, it excels at providing the gentle roundness, subtle sweetness & “mastered” quality that you’d expect from a classic optical compressor.
Jackson Audio have given the Bloom’s compressor circuit a truly flat EQ response, which means that only the dynamics of your guitar’s signal are affected and your tone is preserved. Like with any high-quality compressor, with the Bloom, you feel the effect rather than hear it.
Distinct Compression Presets
What many can find off-putting about feature-packed compressors is the myriad of intimidating controls (such as ratio, knee, attack & release), which can be confusing and tricky to dial in. Jackson Audio have circumvented this with the Bloom, by giving it a simple and streamlined design that’s guitarist-friendly. The Bloom’s compressor section features 6 distinctive presets that are optimised for a variety of genres and styles - from subtle to full-on. Out of the 6 modes, there’s Limit (ultra-quick 2.5ms attack), Country (fast 7.5ms attack), R&B (medium 50ms attack), Ballad (slow 120ms attack), Slide and Aux Compressor. Achieving the perfect comp sound with the Bloom couldn’t be easier or more intuitive.
Primed For Slide
The 5th compression preset - Slide or “Joey” mode - was created in tandem with slide virtuoso Joey Landreth and designed as the ultimate compressor for slide-based styles. The Slide mode uses dual compressors that are running in series in a similar way to how famed slide player Lowel George (of the band Little Feat) achieved his singing, endless sustain that remained clean. This mode engages a hidden auxiliary compressor circuit, which is set at the factory to a fast 7.5ms attack and can be customised using the Comp & Volume trimmers on the right side of the pedal.
A handy feature of the Jackson Audio Bloom is the Blend knob, which allows you to choose how much of your clean signal is combined with the purely compressed one. This means you can seamlessly merge a heavily compressed signal with your clean tone, giving you the benefit of both a natural note attack and a lengthy sustain which is gradually faded in.
Next, we have the Bloom circuit, which is a huge asset to this pedal’s feature-set. This circuit is not only a brilliant level booster, it’s a sustainer, too. You can obtain an instant boost from the Bloom circuit with a quick press of the footswitch or, if you press & hold the footswitch, you can gradually ramp up to the boosted level instead. This ability to ramp-up and ramp-down is a great tool to have for performance as you can slowly bolster the sustain of held notes and easily adjust your sound to fit a song’s dynamics. The ramp speed is programmable, from 1 second at its fastest to 5 seconds at the highest setting.
For the studio-quality 3-band EQ circuit, Jackson Audio have referenced the sought-after Baxandall EQ and reworked it for guitarists/bassists. Jackson Audio diligently tweaked this EQ circuit to give it a wide sweet spot and made sure that the unpleasant highs & lows that can fatigue your ears at extreme settings are removed. When the Treble, Middle and Bass knobs are at noon, you’re getting a truly flat response. The EQ knobs have useful detents at the mid-point so you can quickly return to an unaffected tone.
Jackson Audio have bestowed the second version of their Bloom pedal with MIDI capabilities, which elevates its live performance potential. By sending program changes and control changes to the Bloom, you can instantly toggle on/off states for the compressor, EQ and boost/sustain circuits, the compression mode, the source for the boost level and the boost level amount.
The Jackson Audio Bloom pedal is a huge asset to any guitarist or bassists rig. The fact that you can use each of the circuits individually gives you 3 astounding effects in 1 stompbox. If you’re in the market for studio-quality compression, top-notch EQ and an expressive boost/sustainer, the Bloom is hard to beat.
- Transparent Optical (LA-2A style) limiting circuit with huge dynamic range.
- Dual Compressors for the ultimate slide tone.
- Blend control that allows the player to blend in their clean (uncompressed) tone with their compressed tone.
- Preset 1: Limit Mode. Ultra-fast attack (2.5ms) that clamps any signal and acts as a limiter.
- Preset 2: Country Mode. Fast attack (7.5ms) that is perfectly timed for chicken picking or modern country.
- Preset 3: R&B Mode. Medium attack (50ms)
- Preset 4: Ballad Mode. Slow attack (120ms) setting
- Preset 5: Slide Mode aka ‘Joey’ Mode. Adds an additional internal compression stage in series before the primary compressor. Allows for nearly endless sustain on clean guitar parts ala Lowell George from Little Feat.
- Preset 6: Aux Compressor. The aux compressor is the internal compressor circuit that is used in Preset 5. There are two trimmers located on the side of the pedal that allow the user to adjust the COMP and VOLUME for this additional compression stage.
- Side Chain jack/loop that allows an external source (click track etc) to trigger compression. Side Chain loop can also be used with an external effect (an EQ for example) to tailor the response of the compression.
- 0-20dB Boost Available (quick press on Bloom footswitch)
- 0-20dB Bloom Available (long press on Bloom footswitch)
- True Boost Circuit. Fully counter-clockwise position is unity level.
- Totally flat EQ down to sub-audio frequencies.
- Programmable Ramp Up/Down Time.
- Studio-grade EQ with High Bandwidth and Flat Response at 12:00
- +/- 12dB Boost/Cut per control
- Center Detents on the pots that make it easier to get back to a neutral or flat response.
- Programmable True Bypass or Buffered Bypass
- Input Impedance: 1M
- Output Impedance: 100k
- Power Supply: DC
- Voltage Input: 9V MAX
- Polarity: Center Negative
- Min Current Required: 300mA
- Dimensions: 2.7” x 4.875″
- Weight: 0.4kg