• I have just started playing at a bigger venue that has IEM only (all very new to me) but currently it all comes back in mono (just plug my IEM into the cable I am given, and create my own mix with my iPad) and the sound I get is hindering my playing.


    The FOH sound is good but I was wondering, could I somehow plug the monitor mix into the kemper and use the headphone jack so I at least get myself in stereo?


    Any other thoughts or ideas would be appreciated but bear in mind I am on a steep learning curve!


    thanks

  • So the cable you’re given on-stage is already 1/4” TRS or 1/8” TRS jack socket on the end of it carrying headphone level signal? I.e. driven from a headphone amp somewhere?


    Or is it an XLR/TRS jack that you plug into your own headphone amp/level control box or wireless IEM transmitter?


    Forgive me for not knowing if you’re well versed in audio TLAs or not - if the above doesn’t mean much to you let me know.


    You can do what you’re suggesting with the correct cable adapter(s) connecting to the Aux input (Return 1 for mono) on the Kemper.

    You would need to mute the guitar signal being sent from the desk (or just pull the send down on the iPad app if no mute button) and set the aux input to mono on the Kemper. You’d still have most of your signal in the middle though - mono to a stereo output isn’t going to suddenly become a lot wider. The guitar would be in stereo, yes, but most of it is still centred unless you pan it around (panorama control on the Kemper rig settings). You won’t be able to pan the desk mix, but you can connect it to one side of the aux return in stereo mode I suppose, and pan the guitar to the other side (hard pan). I know some people who play like this, but I find it awful personally.

    I still think a mono Kemper aux setup could work though, with the following considerations:

    1. With the ‘rest of band’ mix now separate from your guitar foldback, you can be more liberal with the foldback/aux EQ (or your engineer can). I suspect that there just a lot going on in the midrange and it is making it difficult for you to define your guitar at times. Just increasing the level of the guitar will risk damaging your ears, so instead try cutting out a chunk of the mid frequency range from the band mix to give it more space to occupy on its own. As it’s a digital desk, it is bound to have Aux EQ for this.
    2. Make sure you don’t unintentionally unbalance the signal coming from the desk by using a TS jack cable, as it will pick up interference. The Toaster and Rack have an XLR Return (as well as the TRS) so that would be ideal as it is balanced+robust and easy for live sound venues as there should be XLR cables aplenty. The Stage has TRS returns only, which are also balanced connections and compatible with XLR, using the correct cable.
    3. Using the 1/8” headphone out on the Kemper will sound great; better than any wireless IEM system, for example, and most headphone outs period from what I’ve found, but it’s not robust if someone trips on your cable. It’s a real shame this isn’t a 1/4” output, it hey.. Just make sure you secure the cable to take the strain relief.
      Also remember “Space” might be enabled on the headphone out so enable/disable as required.

    Lastly, depending on the size of your band and the size of the desk, there might actually be scope to provide a stereo foldback mix if you can convince the engineer that you need and deserve it ?. They might just have a working practice of mono foldback despite having more capacity. Worth a conversation with them. Have you already explained the issues you’re having? While handing out personal monitor mixing on iPads solves a LOT of challenges and saves a lot of time for an engineer while empowering the talent, it shouldn’t absolve them of their monitor mixing duties entirely.


    Let me know how you get on and if the mono
    EQ solution does anything for you, and if any of the above doesn’t make sense please let me know.
    -Ed



  • Until I got a complete stereo mix with in ears, it all sounded congested and not very useable. You need the full width to get clarity on individual instruments and make the most of your playing.


    We ended up with the whole band going to in ears and making our own monitor mix through the keyboard players laptop and interface. We just ask for a feed of the drum mix and lead vocals to add to our DIs. This means most levels are set before leaving rehearsal and you have a really quick setup for festivals too.


    Do whatever you can to get a stereo mix and get the full benefit of hearing everything clearly. Your playing will improve!

  • thanks for the replies. Yes, definitely looking for a stereo mix soon and for a lot to learn as I am a new kemper user also. But in the mean time I am given a 1/8 inch jack socket which my in ears plug straight into. They seem to go mono as sometimes they have bands which use more outs than would be able to go stereo with but I will certainly be asking!


    1.) yes it is all very congested so will look into what I can EQ next time as that will certainly make a difference. Last time out I was either above the mix or missing and just trusting that FOH was ok! I am not so keen on the idea of panning the band hard one side and my guitar the other but I won’t rule it out.


    2.) to be honest you lost me a little bit here. I have a 1/8 inch to dual 1/4 splitter so was looking at using that for the short term. Plugging from the 1/8 jack to the kemper with no guitar and mixing the guitar in through the kemper. Will this work? I will have to have a play and look in the rig setting for the panning options.


    3.) noted!


    Thanks again

  • I have a 1/8 inch to dual 1/4 splitter so was looking at using that for the short term. Plugging from the 1/8 jack to the kemper with no guitar and mixing the guitar in through the kemper. Will this work?

    No worries. In short, yes it will work, it'll just be an unbalanced connection so check there isn't too much interference picked up from mains cabling and transformers, lighting control boxes etc. around the stage area.


    If there is an unacceptable amount of buzz an hum working its way in, then you could talk to the engineer about taking the balanced signal that must be feeding a headphone driver somewhere onstage (on the other end of that headphone extender cable you're being offered) and connecting it directly to your Kemper TRS return instead. They probably have the correct cabling/adapters.


    I agree with the others, stereo foldback is probably a goal to aim for if at all possible. Combine that with being able to EQ the band mix as well, and with your personal monitor mix system on iPad you'll have a holdback setup that's hard to beat.

  • We ended up with the whole band going to in ears and making our own monitor mix through the keyboard players laptop and interface.

    I’m intrigued. Is the software you’re using the driver for the interface with built-in low latency monitor mixing then? Like the Audient, Metric Halo or Motu stuff? Sounds like a powerful solution.

  • I’m intrigued. Is the software you’re using the driver for the interface with built-in low latency monitor mixing then? Like the Audient, Metric Halo or Motu stuff? Sounds like a powerful solution.

    It is just Pro Tools. We were already running a click with sound effects and loops with the laptop and just started putting guitar, bass and keys in on aux tracks to monitor. It helps with rehearsal and makes playing live enjoyable when you get a consistent mix.


    We have a Macbook, Focusrite Saffire Pro 40 and Behringer ADA8200 that gives you additional outputs for the monitor mixes to in ears. As I said, latency is no issue when you are used to hearing a delay by standing away from a speaker. If your mix comes from a desk at the side of the stage, that is likely to be digital with latency anyway.


    The only issue is that the keyboard player complains about carrying all out in ear transmitters in his rack.