SUHR REACTIVE LOAD / IR $599 street price
This box features a reactive load but the impedance is not adjustable, it comes in one impedance, 8-ohms. The Suhr Reactive Load / IR feels like a very solid and sturdily constructed piece of hardware.
On the front panel of the box is a rotary switch to select which of the 16 included impulse response curves is being used. Suhr ships the unit fully loaded with IR’s of Suhr speaker cabinets loaded into all the positions. Suhr loads their speaker cabinets with Celestion speakers and worked with Celestion in the creation of the factroy IR’s. A bright red LED readout shows which response is loaded. I’ve been using Celestion speakers for over 40 years so the included IR’s work well for me.
A GOOD MANUAL
Suhr did a good job on the owners manual. It includes signal path schematics, detailed specifications and a very complete explanation of how to use the box.
HOW DOES IT SOUND?
In use I had no difficulty finding an IR that worked with any of the amps I connected to. A 4x12 Marshall cabinet loaded with Celestion Vintage 30 or G12 speakers are favorites of mine and the Suhr delivers several IR that fit that criteria. The Suhr delivers great sounds with or without a physical speaker connected.
On the front panel is a 1/8” headphone jack with its own volume control. I tested with Sennheiser HD600, HD650, and Audio Technica ATH M50, I love the sound of this headphone output.
Adjacent to the headphone output is an 1/8” AUX input. You can plug mini-TRS line audio into the AUX input and jam along listening on headphones, while your tube amp uses the reactive load and impulse response on the guitar sound. I had a blast rocking out with headphones in the kitchen at 1am while my partner was sound asleep just 60 feet away.
Suhr equipped this IR box with two 1/4” TRS balanced outputs, one is unfiltered and would be good for recording a track to REAMP. The other output features whatever IR is in use. There is no ground-lift switch.
PEDALBOARD POWER COMPATIBLE
The 9-volt power supply requirement means you could integrate the Reactive Load / DI into a pedalboard and run it using the pedalboard power supply instead of the included wall wart. Less than 200 mA is required to drive the Suhr RL / IR and the power inlet socket is the same size used on standard Boss pedals.
|REAR PANEL CONNECTIONS ON SUHR REACTIVE LOAD / I.R.
This box is built solid, it feels heavy duty.
It has balanced outputs which is good for plugging directly into a DAW interface.
The Impulse Response samples sound good.
The Aux input/Headphone output jam potential is huge.
Compatible with pedal board power
There is no XLR microphone-level output.
Maximum I.R. length is only 20.5 ms, longer I.R. can be loaded but they will be truncated.
I had ground-loop problems with the balanced line ouput using high gain amps connected directly to my DAW system. A high quality direct box with a ground lift switch solved the hum problem so you might want to budget for a direct box for live or studio use.
EPILOGUE SUHR REACTIVE LOAD / IR
The Suhr Reactive Load / IR is simple, intuitive, easy to use, sounds great and provides the unique option for injecting jam tracks to practice with in almost total silence via the convenient front panel AUX input.
The Suhr can handle up to 150 watts of power so it worked with my Boogie Dual Rectifier Solo heads easily (it does get warm). I have also used the Suhr RL / IR with the 50 watt EVH 5150 III EL34, Marshall Origin 20, Marshall DSL-1 and the 22-watt Fender Super Sonic.
The Suhr Reactive Load / IR delivers a solid package of tone and features for a reasonable price.
Thanks for reading High on Technology, Good Music to You!
©Sept 2021 by Mark King, it’s not ok to copy or quote without written permission.