New to impulse responses - are they worth it?

  • Hey fellow Kemper brothers and sisters,

    I was looking around on the web and saw Owenhammer, Lancaster Audio, Celestion, and a couple of other sites where you can purchase IR's.

    I'm pretty stoked with the way my Kemper sounds now, but figured I might want to try this since I've already had it for 3-4 years. ^^

    Is it worth it? Are there better places to get IR's?

    Thanks in advance.

  • Hey Rip - I used IRs extensively *before* I got my kemper. Previously had (well, I still have it, as a backup) an Atomic AA12. Being the gearhead tinkerer I am, I started playing around with IRs. I really *loved* the ownhammer GNR ones - but for best results, I mixed my own.- I took three different IRs and mixed them together with MixIR. (I used one that was in front of the amp, one from *behind* the amp, and another of the room. I even I recorded a cabless track out of my favourite modelled amps, and played that looped in protools while I got everything mixed together.

    It was fun. Why am I telling you this? I guess to show that I got deep into the IRs.. Like, IR mafia deep.

    I got out.

    I haven't touched them since I got my Kemper. Not even my custom mixed one. I *may* browse the cabs of other rigs while I'm getting my tone right, but I'm too happy with what I've got to bother messing with Impulse Responses.

    That said - lots of these guys - Celestion and Ownhammer, for example - often offer free downloads. Try it out. In fact, there are a bunch of Celestion cabs in a recent-ish update to the firmware as well. Might have been the second last release? I can't remember off the top. Someone smarter than I will surely chime in.

    For the Kemper, you'll need to convert them to Kemper cabs- that's what the Cab Maker tool is for.

    Try it out - no harm will come to you, except perhaps for a new kind of GAS and a lot of wasted hours. (ha ha)

    KPA Unpowered Rack, Kemper Remote, X32 Rack, uTrack 24, MTP AV,BC Rich Mockingbird(s)

  • I totally agree to mollydyer's Statement.

    I personally Experiment a lot with IRs and also bought several IRs from different suppliers.

    For me, tweaking profiles for live-use Begins by changing the cabs. If you -after a while - know the Impact of specific IRs to the Overall-Sound of a Profile, tweaking often also Ends hereafter.

  • I bought and loaded my first external IR last week...

    Erm, they definitely sound different...

    However, please refer to the " I've got shit ears" posts....

    I think it depends what camp you fit into:

    1) Guitarist plug and play, twiddles with a few knobs but doesn't really know what mids do. You scoop them because others say you should

    2) Tone expert - you know what sound you want and you can tell the difference between gold and nickle connectors and what 200hz cut will do

    If its the former ( like me) its another variable that actually has just confused things. there is so much tonal variation that I get lost. I have used my new IR's and I don;t regret them but I haven't trawled through the 700 odd I bought, just choose one that sounded good.

    If its the latter, definitely as it adds more variation to your pallet :)

    On balance glad I dipped my toe in ( profiles and IR's are so cheap) but also glad its not triggered GAS.

  • When I had the Atomic Amplifire (AA3), I fell into the IR rabbit hole. I was all in, buying a boatload of IRs. I also learned how to do IR EQ Tone Matching, which is another rabbit hole of its own.

    Since getting the Kemper, I can honestly say that I almost never use IRs any longer. I originally started using CabMaker to transform IRs to the Kemper format, and putting them onto the Kemper. I found that the converted IRs sounded different from any cab loader in a DAW.

    I have around a dozen of my old favorite IRs on my Kemper, but I have only used them once in a saved profile. In my eyes, not worth it.

  • i tried IRs a few times, but i hardly stick with something else than what comes withe profile. I do like merged profiles for a better separation so my cab sounds like my cab. But thats it. Do you work with low and high shift in the cab section? Tiny tweaks makd more for me than other IRs.

    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.

  • I’m kind of the opposite of some in this post... I just recently started using pretty much nothing BUT IR’s with dIrect profiles. For me, this gives me much more control over exactly what I want, as the IR world has vastly more “well micd” cabinets than in Kemper land in my opinion. Ownhammer approach is great, in that they are done with a neutral power amp, and giving tons of snapshots and different microphone placements, thus giving me much better seperation within the amp/cab block, and huge versitility to find exactly what I want. It’s a win for me.

  • I’d also like to add that 9.9/10, switching an IR while using a direct profile sounded much much much more “natural” and real than if I were to switch to a merged cab, this has just been my experience over the last few years. Sometimes a merged cab just works, and it’s great. But more often than not, an IR, for me, reacts the way it would if I was switching to a different cab or mic position “in real life”.