Still not as good as my tube amps...Arrrggggh!

  • I'm still trying to get my Non powered rack to sound as good as my tube amps. So far, I have not and it's really bothering me.

    If anyone can assist with some tips or setting adjustments, that would be cool.

    Using M Britt profiles of a Marshall JCM 800 2204, Friedman BE100, and a EVH. Cab is only called MARS.

    It's "Ok" but it's not as good. I've tweaked the eq's and it's still lacking in the thump/power/balls that I have when using the heads.

    Going straight to the board mostly. On occasion using the monitor out to the return of a tube head into a 4x12 Marshall.

  • Well, it took some time to bring my Kemper to the desired sounds.

    It‘s not like a Marshall, plug and play.

    But if you know how to do it, it‘s the only kind of gear your need.

    You will have to try.

  • I disagree, it *is* plug and play like a Marshall, but it's also the sound of a mic'd up amp. WYSIWYG.


    Are you used to playing and hearing the amps directly behind you? Or are you used to using some form of DI and only monitoring through the PA system/IEM's? Because your PA won't sound like your guitar amp.


    If it's the former then you're going to have to get used to what amps sound like mic'd up through your monitoring system, or you're going to have to use a power amp into a real guitar cab, turn off the speaker sim and make sure to use "merged" profiles only. Then send the full signal to FOH. Also don't forget to dial up the monitoring a little, you can't get the effect of air moving without moving some air.


    The other thing to do - profile your own amps. No-one else's profiles are going to sound like your amps at your settings. Sorry it's just the nature of the beast. Every amp is different, even from the same batch, every person making profiles tweaks them to suit their play style and guitar, every profile uses a different mic and placement of that mic. You will not get something sounding like your amps unless you actually profile your own amps. And given that profiling is the main selling point of the Kemper you'd have to be crazy to not actually use it if the goal is to sound like what you were using before.


    Of course if you want to sound better than you were before FOH then by all means use the best sounding profiles you can find. Be absolutely certain of what your goals are - are they to have the same sound as you're used to? Or to improve on what you have?

  • Yea I get what you mean.

    In a normal rehearsal situation, the amp and cab is pretty close to me. That cab is then mic'ed and goes to a PA.

    I try to match the cab volume or be slightly less than the volume coming from the PA speakers.

    I compare THAT sound I get to the direct sound I'm getting from the kemper into the PA direct using the M Britt tones because I feel that those profiles are professionally done and would be better than anything I would be able to do. So that's the theory.

  • I've had my Kemper a few years now, I never managed to get tones I liked enough to ditch my tube amps, until recently.

    I used a two channel orange dual terror for ease when rehearsing and the kemper in the studio. Eventually I profiled my own orange through both channels and found it was faithful live through a 4x12 and in the studio.

    But that was just my starting point.

    Once I was happy it was at least as good I then went through the various profiles i'd bought and found. Matamp, wem, sunn, ampeg, fender, Marshall, etc. Looking for my holy grail. A/B ing to my own amp profile.

    I had nearly 1000 rigs installed.

    I then did a blind test, stepping through them, ignoring the names, looking for a clean and a dirty fuzzy sound. I used my strat first and picked about 10 amps from the whole list.

    I then did the same with my les paul and picked another 10.

    5 or 6 of them were the same profiles.

    I then A/B those to my own profiles and preferred them.

    I tried my pedals with the clean profiles and found one I love for Fender, Gibson, clean, and with a fuzz pedal.

    Its one of m Britts dumble pack.

    It records well, suits my playing, works with all my guitars and loves pedals.

    My brother in law is a fan of dream theatre so we downloaded the choptones boogie jp pack. It's di clean is amazing, as are the overdrive tones. Blew us both away.

    One hugely important factor in this is that the kemper is going through a flat response non tube power stage.


    Anyway, it's taken me 3 years, but I now have the best tones I've ever played, every day, consistent and reliable.


    One last thing I've noticed is that I don't have to play at mind melting volume to get the tone, I can actually hear the singler and drummer (if I want) or crank it, the tone stays the same.


    Persevere, I went from 1000 profiles down to 6, and back up to about 20, still loving my dumble pack tho.

  • First of all, a good test would be profiling the preamp of your tube amp and then running the preamp-only profile through the power stage of that amp with the same cab. For me, the experience of playing, interacting with the sound in such tests has been very similar compared to the "real thing". It's often changes in monitoring that cause undesirable differences to people.


    And another note, perhaps more important: Mbritt profiles can be relatively dark sounding. Clearly many love them; however there's also some for whom many of his profiles aren't the best fit. Heck, I've met a few people who had "their" tone right there already and yet were trying out hundreds of profiles only to discover that profiling their own tone is the best way of .. getting their tone into kemper :)


    That is probably worth trying out. But even then monitoring will matter. If your goal would be to have the whole "tube power amp through cab" bonanza -- that's another issue, also do-able. I've at times used kemper as a "preamp expander" for the power stage of my amp just to have more options, using preamp-only profiles, and at times even pre-amp plus power amp profiles through the tube power stage.


    Main reason had been that... playing through a guitar cab... is the so-called bonanza. In a good way ;)

  • Record the tube amp and then record the Kemper and you will see that the Kemper is as good


    You confuse the speakers of the tube amp and the speakers of your sound system. They will never match


    But listen to a Kemper an a tube amp on your sound system speakers after a recording


    or live in the PA


    the kemper is even superior


    but dont compare on different speakers .... its ridiculous

  • if you compare, have it powered into the cab otherwise you have to do the recording comparison.

    once a purist, then analog pragmatic and finally a digital believer who found out that you can't hear a mosquito fart in a band-context.

  • If you have tube amps you like, and you seem to have the equipment to mic them, create your own profiles. It takes some practice, but this is what the KPA has been initially made for.

    Although profiles created by other people probably can sound great, they are not YOUR tone by default.

  • What you like is the sound of your amp through your cab. If you use a Kemper, you'll be hearing the amp through a miced cab.


    If you like your amp, create a DI Profile of your Marshall and connect it to a cab. It will sound 99% the same.

  • To compare, you would have to put the amp in another so you can compare what the audience would hear. Otherwhise its just like Behind said.

    once a purist, then analog pragmatic and finally a digital believer who found out that you can't hear a mosquito fart in a band-context.

  • If you have tube amps you like, and you seem to have the equipment to mic them, create your own profiles. It takes some practice, but this is what the KPA has been initially made for.

    Although profiles created by other people probably can sound great, they are not YOUR tone by default.

    I dont care I want the rigs I buy from great cies

  • In my previous post I mentioned working my way through a lot of profiles. I've always loved the way valve amps push sound, my old jmp master volume was hard to beat but varied wildly from week to week, I have a Fender Bassman 100 too and always found it a bit too linear but good with pedals.

    My Orange Dual Terror was a lightweight compromise that covered all my rehearsal room and recording requirements, admittedly I'd had it revalved to get it where I wanted. It was only when I profiled my gig settings that I realised the Kemper negated the need for all my amps, it is a totally faithful reproduction.

    That essentially was what won me over and finally got my buy in.

    In finding profiles that bettered my own I noticed that tone in the Kemper is very sensitive to guitars, and 99pc of profiles I tried sounded dire for my taste.

    Now that I'm using a non valve power stage I'm favouring di profiles, I've recently found the Till's cablab which have really impressed and cover off the studio and pa side of the sound.

    I can't express enough just how far the Kemper has batted all my other rigs out of the park.

  • I suppose I’m lucky that my band mates were intolerant of stage volume. It was an 8 piece band where I was the only guitarist. I had a 1x12 on stage with a 7w master-volume only valve amp and I actually had to use an attenuator to avoid drowning everyone out. Admittedly the guy who designed it told me that ‘if it was any other company selling it, they’d call it a 25w amp but I tell the truth’.


    Consequently, the Kemper was a really positive move for me live as it was the first time I could get something I was happy with on stage without being glared at for volume issues. For sure I only played smaller places (biggest crowd was around 200) but I don’t know how you guys all get away with cranked 4x12 on stage with you. Must be fun :). I guess my experience of band glares meant I didn’t miss my ‘real thing’ as the bad points of the ‘real thing’ for sure exist so any compromise involved with going to a mic’d sound was more than worth it for me. As I’m only doing home stuff these days, that gift keeps on giving.


    Hope you find your happy 😃

  • ''Still not as good as my tube amps...Arrrggggh!''


    thats allowed you know to use both, your Kemper and your tube amp (separately or at the same time) and be happy with whatever satisfied you so you wont have to complain on Forums.

  • ''Still not as good as my tube amps...Arrrggggh!''


    thats allowed you know to use both, your Kemper and your tube amp (separately or at the same time) and be happy with whatever satisfied you so you wont have to complain on Forums.

    He's asking for tips on a forum largely based on support in order to improve his experience with kemper. Clearly there's often room to learn more and get better results.

  • I mic an amp the way I normally would to record it.

    Then I feed that chain through the Kemper.

    And we profile it.


    Now I can push that button and compare the live sound through the mic’ed amp to the profile of the same thing.

    And the differences are SO slight that everyone in the room can easily be confused as to which is which.


    If you’re feeling your amps are clearly to you SO much “better” then something is plainly wrong.


    But having said that, I’ll add that I do use some select profiles from other people.

    But the vast majority of what I use are profiles I’ve made myself.

    This is in no small part because I like my amps (and the friends’ amps I know I like) but even more because I like the way *I* mic and record them.

    For example: When I set up my favourite AC30 and record it, that’s a sound that’s, oddly, almost nothing like every typical AC30 model and profile I’ve heard out there.

    But the AC30 profiles I’ve made are indistinguishable from my amps.

    It’s quite conceivable that to the people who made those profiles that I don’t much like, MY profile would sound ‘wrong’. Who knows?


    But my experience tells me that although you can certainly poke about on rig exchange, or the internets in general, and find some useable profiles, the real key to Kemper happiness is to profile the sounds YOU know YOU like.

  • Since you have tube amps that you seem to like - why not profile those with the same exact settings you'd normally use and see what happens? The problem with Kemper is that you can't really tweak profiles to your liking. Messing around with EQ and Gain seems to degrade the quality of the profile real fast. If you have amps that you like, profile them with the set-up you'd normally run into the PA (settings, cabinet, mike). I bet you won't notice a difference between that and a Kemper straight to PA except for the feel in the room. It wouldn't be fair to compare PA + amp in the room to PA only. It'll never feel like the amount of air that a guitar amplifier moves through a real cab.


    I can tell you though that in a studio setting, it sounds absolutely identical to the miked up cab. Lots of studio owners capture profiles of their rigs when recording bands so they can go back and re-record stuff later on. Works like a charm.


    In a live setting, running a Kemper through the power amp of an amplifier sounds identical to the amplifier itself. So the difference comes mostly from the power amp. Surprise! A class D power amp doesn't sound like 100 Watts of tubes... But even then, with some minor tweaks you can get a Kemper to sound reaaaaly close.