Future of Kemper? 2020 and Beyond

  • Loving the Kemper Stage. Missing a good few features that I am used to though.

    I would still love the ability to choose which rig is initially active when switching a Performance.

    Better Chorus algorithm’s. More TC 1210 than boss pedal. The chorus is just not lush enough and modulation wise, very predictable.

    Micro Pitch Shift able to do what an SPX90 could do 30 years ago. Set different left and right shift with plus and minus pitch settings plus a delay setting for each side. Can’t replicate any classic micro pitch shift the way it is now.

    Longer Mono Delay time.

    Apart from that, fantastic unit. ❤️

  • Am I dumb - i cant find an editor. Please help me!

    There is a BETA version of the editor that also requires a Beta version of the Profiler OS.

    If you are OK with that (and per Kemper's recommendation) are not using your Profiler live or in a Production studio situation, you can find them at


    For the Beta Kemper OS, select Category: Operating System Beta Versions

    For Beta Rig Manager, with the Editor, select Category: Rig Manager

  • Considering the topic of the OP.

    To see where the KPA should develop further, at first we need to point out where KPA still holds back against its main rivals: AxeFx and Helix. There are three main points of comparison: sound, software and hardware.

    1. Considering sound – there's no apparent winner, as it's subjective and people still can't agree which unit sounds the best. But Kemper does not have synth simulation and AxeFx does.
    2. Considering software – KPA loses to AxeFx and Helix, as it lacks parallel signal chains (though there are I/O for at least two parallel signal chains).
    3. Considering hardware – Kemper loses to AxeFx and Helix, as it lacks routing options and built-in USB audio interface (which is also a software capability).

    So, to fully get up to AxeFx and Helix, KPA must have at least parallel signal chains, more routing options, have polyphonic synth simulation, USB audio interface, enough processing power to support all that, and maybe profiling not only amps, but also effects and, if possible, mics (may be possible with launch of the Kemper Kone, which can be used as a reference speaker).

    But, the main thing that every guitarist looks for – is the sound that inspires to play music and it should not matter what tubes were involved, how many gain stages, how many pedals in front, what combination of speakers, etc. And so the main product every guitarist wants is NOT a tube amp, solid state amp, digital amp or pedals. It is the sound itself, not the gear. But, a lot of people miss that point and want a feature for profiling the whole amp (with tone stack) or overdrive pedals. Those people are looking for a gear, but what they really need – is the sound. And they start to have misunderstanding KPA's main conception – a profiling guitar amplifier with onboard effects ("profiling" means – "don't care about hardware"). KPA's hardware interface states that it is a guitar amp: it has standard gain, tone stack and effect knobs, and a profiling mode. Software interface states that it is abstract amp: amp settings do not have anything about types of tubes or gain stages, but there's "Definition", "Clarity", "Tube Shape", "Tube Bias"; cabinet settings do not have speaker size, cab size or mic placement, but there's "Character", "Low Shift", "High Shift" and "Pure Cab". All those settings describe sound, and not the gear. And that is the main point of the KPA itself – abstract from gear and work with the sound itself.

    And so we have the product that serves the main single purpose – being an abstract guitar amplifier, but the changes, that a lot of people want, would place such unit closer to a multi effect processor and thus at the same category as AxeFx and Helix.

    At this point there is no clear answer to the OP's question, as people still do not know what they really need (probably never will, as newer guitarists are born every day :) ) and for Kemper it is hard to lead every lost soul. So maybe someday KPA-II will fully surpass AxeFx-IV...

  • Sound-wise I've got pretty much all I need with the current firmware. There is a potential for improvement with new hardware-designs but with the current designs I hope CK and his team focus their efforts on:

    • Bug fixes and general stability.
    • Improved communications with the Kemper Remote. If both units operate as Ethernet broadcast listeners and transmitters instead of relying on periodic connection-retries the initial connection between the devices can be established immediately as soon as the last of the two is ready. The KPA should be able to keep track of remote state across reboots. I would prefer the KPA to mute all outputs on shutdown and keep all outputs muted on boot until the remote is connected and the current position of volume-expression-pedals is known. This could be a global setting for those who like me use the KPA more or less exclusively with the Kemper Remote.
    • Network enhancements (expanded below).

    With an external PoE-capable 3(+)-port switch (or new KPA with 2 ports) there is quite a few opportunities wrt coexistence with other audio-gear on the shared studio or stage-network. For example:

    • KPA<->RM communications over Ethernet/IP instead of USB
    • Multiple simultaneous controllers (PC/Mac, Android devices, IOS-devices)
    • Tablet/Phone touch-screen remote. This can be either device-specific apps or a browser-based interface for example expanding on the KPA-remote test/simulation app that was included in some former betas.
    • DANTE and/or AVB-audio for recording/reamping or even to connect to mixing-consoles supporting such protocols.
  • I believe the future of modellers for electric guitar is even more "back to the roots"..it's "in the woods"..;)

    There are new markets out there in this world which noone of the big companies till date has ever touched yet.A lot of people out there today don't have the means to get an expensive piece of gear..but for sure some day they will.

    And stringed instruments will remain the big thing in the future.The world will not stop to play guitar,bass and any other stringed instruments which are still used around the world.The electric guitar became big because it had several breakthrough advantages over the acoustic..louder,easier to play,new,more modern sounds..in the 50s..

    Out of these three breakthrough advantages the first two still remain.It is good to hear yourself.Whenever you play.It is also good to have an instrument which is really easy to handle.

    But the third "advantage"..ouch..

    The sound of a electric guitar as we know it...the big distorted rock star thing..is out of date..it has become a cliché for most people out there.Lets be honest.Kids want to become a rockstar through gangsta-poetry these days.Or some talent show on tv.Or in instagram..So be it..

    I agree with those who say that the future of the Kemper lies beyond the classical rock/pop/metal kind of thing.Synth sounds..yeah..for sure..but it is also easy today to achieve these sounds with your modern daw.You play a line with your guitar..two minutes work with several functions and plug ins.. voilà..

    @CK brought back "the old way" (not only because of the chicken knob..lol..) of using gear.The Kemper can be used as a simple tube amp while it has also the option to be used in a modern environment.Loud,intensive,Rock'n'Roll but also connected,silent,user friendly..not to say "convenient"..

    Maybe a further step back (ie different acoustic string sounds) sound wise will be the future.Mixing old sounds..organic sounds..with modern sounds.I really hope the new acoustic SIM will show a little bit of this...a glimpse of this future.It is a big chance.In the end the stringed instrument is just a piece of wood.The pickup is just a tiny fraction in this whole history.Anyway

    Playing the electric guitar as "I know it" while being able to bring in "more sound of wood and more-/different strings"..would be a huge thing in my opinion.Many people ask frequently for the sound of a violin..this is a good example.of what I mean.

    Let's just imagine the sound of a soaring electric lead sound mixed with a sound of a nice,organic violin played by all the harmonic minor shredders out there..need to say more?

  • Now that the stage is out, and a full featured editor exists, I believe the next product should be a "Kemper Mini" foot model. This would have only the LCD, up bank, down bank, and 4 foot switches to change rigs within a performance. Price it at around $600 and try to keep up with all the orders!

    All performance Management and rig management would be done through the editor (or a phone app) through Bluetooth.

    Such a product would be hugely popular with new users, and most of we power users having higher end units would buy them as backups and a small throw-and-go setup.

    Oh, and I too would like to see the stomps upgraded!

  • I was hoping for the KPA having an Ethernet API. This hope died when the Stage came out without an Ethernet socket. Would have been great to at least keep the option and keep the product ecosystem aligned. I do not know the background of the decision but it seems that they limited themselves for the future here. The Head / Rack versions came with a physical connector but without any functionality on the Ethernet port. Why not going the same route with the Stage?

  • Probably because it was only intended for communication with the remote, nothing else.

    For hardware which shall live long, the more I/O flexibility there is, the better. Probably for a Kemper MK2 they may think about adding Ethernet again to support some protocols, let‘s see.

  • Probably because it was only intended for communication with the remote, nothing else.

    If that was true then why did they bother to use IP? The KPA has a capable IP-stack and will obtain an address from DHCP and appear as a host on your network if connected. I can't see anything preventing Kemper from implementing many of the same audio-oriented network-functions that gets increasingly common with other advanced audio-gear. The only physical obstacle is that the remote has to be powered from the network, but that can be solved with an external PoE switch. Any modern studio built to a decent standard has both wired and wireless networks and live stages too. It would simplify the setup in many situations if a lot of the I/O could be done via the network. (KPA-RM communications, DANTE or AVB audio etc.)

  • It was almost 5 years ago I moved to Kemper and the more time I put in, the better it gets. For 2020 I would like:

    1. A more portable Kemper, but with all the same ins and outs. The original unit was designed with huge interface, but look inside and there is no reason it couldn’t fit 1u or a different design with the editor in tow.

    2. The already announced acoustic simulator.

    3. A TC Mimiq type effect for those of us in a single guitar band live.

    Whatever happens, it will still be brilliant for me live and in the studio. Wishing you all a Happy New Year with your Kempers!

  • tubes are inherently NOT "FRFR"

    This is not intrinsically true. You might have a guitar tube amp in mind and yes, those are designed in order to easily return distorted sounds. But audio devices based on tubes, like power amps, can produce very high output voltage in their linear window, because they are designed with exactly the opposite goal in mind: optimising linearity. It's all a matter of design, really.

    Furthermore, when tubes start distorting the added harmonic components sound much more musical than a clipping transistor; when you measure the extreme performance a given hi-fi power amp is capable of, you can measure a lot of distortion that, as a matter of fact, doesn't affect your listening experience specially because that distortion mainly happens during transients.
    Granted, dynamic is much higher with a live instrument playing; nevertheless, with non-critical applications such as playing electric guitar (Vs. listening to recorded programs), you can have a good amount of "tube colour" that won't sound much "distorted" even at high output levels.

  • The future is kemper are releasing a kemper vest for all users to wear ??

    As much as i thought the hd500 was terrible.

    I really liked the dimension c chorus on it.

    Thought it was great.

    Actual stomp pedal graphics would have been a nice touch on the editor... granted not needed and gimmicky, but front fascias of the amps wouldve been nice too.

  • A metronome feature would be a good start for 2020. :saint:

    Thats the last thing I need....already have an entire band telling me I'm playing stuff wrong...I don't need a beep telling me off too :D :D

    PRS Custom 22's - Fender Strats - Diezel VH4 - Carol Ann OD2 - Toneking Imperial MK2 - Colin the Kemper - CLR Neo ii.