Well, this is an unexpected bonus

  • When I'm writing, I sequence the bass part and use a free VST plugin called 4 Front that emulates a Fender bass. The plugin does a fine job of giving you a clean, realistic sounding Fender style output. But it's always been a hassle trying to take that and then get a realistic bass amp tone. I've thrown the kitchen sink at it - channel strips, Distressors, VST amp simulators, etc. - and it's just never quite right. I'm not a bass player and if I had trouble dialing in guitar tones, it's even less impressive for bass.


    But wait! Right there in Rig Manager there are 98 profiles for bass players. Point my 4 Front output to the K reamp in and poof - instant bass player. One of the things I'm really enjoying with the guitar profiles is that I don't just get a well miked guitar stack. I get the talent of people like Michael Britt to dial in killer tones for me. Turns out that works just as well on bass, making me look good where I have absolutely zero talent.


    You know, I think I'm gonna keep this thing.

  • I can relate to the zero-talent bit, Chris.


    The key here IMHO is the combination of the amps and cabs. Without the cabinet component, at least in my experience, that low-end punch is nearly-impossible to achieve through the various methods you explored plugin-wise.


    IMHO it's not just the weight cabinets add to the sound, but the quality thereof - tasty subtle and sometimes not-so-subtle distortions allow those low frequencies to be more-easily perceived even via less-than-ideal monitoring systems, including those lacking in the bass department.


    You've found the magic ingredient, mate. This is why it's always been a standard M.O. for so many engineers to combine DI and mic'd-amp signals when recording / mixing bass - DI for additional top-end clarity / bite if needed, and the mic'd signal for the overall tone.

  • It's certainly a winning combination, and it removes a significant distraction during mixing. Bass is always one of the hardest things to get sitting right in the mix, and is probably responsible for more round trips to the car than all other instruments combined.

    DI for additional top-end clarity / bite if needed, and the mic'd signal for the overall tone.

    I'm just glad something bites besides my bass tone skills.

  • Do you play the bass? if so I would imagine you're much more discerning in terms of tone than I am.


    I found one that works well for my needs but the part itself is just a songwriting placeholder. I leave the nuances of real bass playing to those with deeper minds (and strings) than me.

  • I'm a bass player, and I think it's awesome. Size, weight, grit in subtle amounts or in spades... it's all-there.


    Slap a compressor (if necessary), some EQ and light chorussing (if necessary) on the recorded track/s, and Bob's yer auntie.


    Chris, be sure to record the DI out from the Kemper at the same time, both for track-blending as well as possible reamping.

  • Do you play the bass? if so I would imagine you're much more discerning in terms of tone than I am.


    I found one that works well for my needs but the part itself is just a songwriting placeholder. I leave the nuances of real bass playing to those with deeper minds (and strings) than me.

    I wouldn’t call bass my main instrument, but I’m decent at it. My bass is pretty good. An old Steinberger Q. I should probably reserve judgement until I check out some new profiles. It’s been a while since I checked any out.

  • I used to think, like a lot of guitarists, that bass was simple because it's the same four strings. I didn't realize you had to think differently. I learned this the hard way when I played bass in a 50s rock & roll show band (I really needed the money). When 2 beat and a simple 145 walking bass line stretches your creative abilities, it's time to leave it to the professionals.


    I ended up using the ST - Black Jack 700 5 profile. It's a simple, low gain, straightforward fat bass sound. I write simple classic rock stuff, so it fit the bill for me. There's a lot of variety there, however. Maybe you'll find something you connect with.

  • I threw together a quick mix on a classic rock type thing I'm working on last night to hear the new guitar tones (dual amp with Feidman / 5150 panned L / R), and played it in the car on my way to forage for provisions. It was no surprise that the guitars sounded good. The bass, however, really stood out.


    Like most cars these days, mine has a decent stereo that's not shy about the low end, so I've struggled trying to get this sequenced Fender bass plugin to sound good. The Black Jack profile I mentioned above came out very focused without losing any of the bottom. It sat perfectly in the mix with the kick, and I didn't touch a thing.


    How these bass profiles fare with real bass players is something I have no insight on but I'm nonetheless very impressed with the results.

  • I threw together a quick mix on a classic rock type thing I'm working on last night to hear the new guitar tones (dual amp with Feidman / 5150 panned L / R), and played it in the car on my way to forage for provisions. It was no surprise that the guitars sounded good. The bass, however, really stood out.


    Like most cars these days, mine has a decent stereo that's not shy about the low end, so I've struggled trying to get this sequenced Fender bass plugin to sound good. The Black Jack profile I mentioned above came out very focused without losing any of the bottom. It sat perfectly in the mix with the kick, and I didn't touch a thing.


    How these bass profiles fare with real bass players is something I have no insight on but I'm nonetheless very impressed with the results.


    A lot of bass players using the Kemper these days, so not surprised at your conclusions.


    Let's hear the song, man! :)

  • How these bass profiles fare with real bass players is something I have no insight on

    Indeed, you only had my wholehearted endorsement as a bass player to go by, Chris, which admittedly counts for nothing. :D


    Seriously man, as I said earlier, IMHO the KPA totally rocks for bass. I wouldn't dream of buying anything else for it, which is such a blessing on my budget and was a very-pleasant surprise when I first bought the unit. Totally-awesome, man.

  • Indeed, you only had my wholehearted endorsement as a bass player to go by, Chris, which admittedly counts for nothing. :D


    Seriously man, as I said earlier, IMHO the KPA totally rocks for bass. I wouldn't dream of buying anything else for it, which is such a blessing on my budget and was a very-pleasant surprise when I first bought the unit. Totally-awesome, man.

    Okay, smarty pants, so it turns out you're a bass player. Who knew? :P


    Need. More. Coffee.

  • I've been using the Langevin DVC for bass mostly. I just love it's limiters, perfect for bass. I'll have to track some with my Kemper. Anyone know of an LA2A type setting for the Kemper compressor? Also, any good McCartney-ish profiles? He was playing through a big Mesa bass rig when I saw him in the 90s.

  • Although guitar has always been my main instrument I used to play in a 10 piece soul band for 23 years. For the first dozen I was on guitar then our bass player took ill and it was easier for me to move to bass and find a good guitarist than it was to find a bass player I was happy with. So for the nect 10 or 11 years I was on bass. I'm no Jaco Pastorius but I do consider myself as a bass player rather than a guitarist playing bass. I stopped gigging on bass before I got the Kemper so I was still lugging around an Ashdown EVO 500 head and an Ampeg Classic 808HE cab for all those years. When playing at home or recording bass I definitely find many of the bass profiles on the Kemper better than anything I have ever used before.