Edit* What to if your Kemper sounds different when loud/quiet

  • I have the toaster head for a while and just starting to get my head around the unit.


    When I play at home through headphones or speakers it sounds absolutely awesome. It feels like a real amp and I can get some beautiful juicy rock tones at conversation volume, which I never thought would happen! When I go to rehearsal and play through the PA it sounds a bit too much like a processor.


    I bought some Tone junkie, Michael Britt and Top Jimi profiles, but can't get the same sound at volume. Apart from eq, and obviously the studio PA which I'm changing next week to my own, what should I be doing?

  • Hi, Bainsey,


    Welcome!


    Our perception of sound changes with volume.

    Check out this article: Fletcher Munson Curve

    It explains how and why going from headphones/monitors to louder systems can be so jarringly different.

    Then check out Equal-loudness contour.


    Also, here are some other resources for you.

    Kemper Manuals and Quick Start guides

    Rig Manager Download and Documentation

    Kemper Tutorials & Demos


    Glad you joined us.


    ST

  • Hi ST and thanks for the welcome :)


    Yes admittedly I haven't really scratched the surface yet, so it will take time I guess.


    The recorded sounds I'm getting at home are what I've been searching for many years, if I can get that at gig volume it will be beyond my expectations!


    Those links will help a lot, thank you.

  • Tl:dr; as you turn the volume up, highs and lows get exaggerated. So you'll need to do your tone tweaking at the levels you'll be playing at. It's perfectly normal (and basically a requirement) to have different EQ and gain settings for recording / studio volume and live volume.

  • Welcome, Bainesy.


    Yes, the obvious candidate is the Fletch-Muns effect. If you want to prepare your Rigs ahead-of-time to be in-the-ballpark try dialling back the treble, presence and bass 3dB in the Stack EQ for starters.


    There's a lot of high-energy, high-end stuff floatin' around on stage and in rehearsal rooms particularly, generally-speaking, as there is in the low-end areas. Cymbals are way louder than they'd be in a mix and kick drums emit a whole lot more low-end energy across a wider spectrum than they'd be allowed to in a tweaked mix.


    So, you have Fletcher Munson as well as the factors I just described all contributing to the need for the guitar to occupy the mid and high-mid frequencies in order to poke through the "mix".


    In short:

    Smiley-faced EQ - great for solo / stand-alone geetar.

    Less smiley-faced EQ - great for mixes.

    Least smiley-faced EQ - great for rehearsals and gigs.


    IMHO. HTH mate.

  • the Monk knows his stuff, but in case you’re unaware, there are also EQ sections in the output

    section. Adjusting these will apply to all your profiles, not just a single profile.

    You can also use the hi and low filters in the output section.

    A typical guitar speaker has a limited range of about 75 to 5k. Try setting your limiters

    to that range .

    These are just general suggestions and depending on your guitar and profiles, not to

    mention monitors, you’ll need to spend time..

    Oh ya...then there’s the room... and on it goes.

    I love my headphones..I just wish everything else was that simple.

    Another issue is the x over point of the monitors. If it’s below 5k then you still

    have that annoying horn / tweeer . They just don’t sound like guitar speakers.

    A graphic e.q. would help us dial out some of the offending “horn” resonance.

  • Welcome to the family 😊. As people have said you need to tweak at gig volumes.

    I dislike the Britt Marshall profile I use ,at low volumes, but it sings on stage at gig volume

    Thanks :)

    I've always played through a cab so this is a learning curve for me. Noodling around last night with some profiles (headphones again) and it's ridiculous how good they sound.


    Which Marshall profile do you like best?

  • Bainesy

    Changed the title of the thread from “Not as good loud as low volume, am I doing something wrong?” to “Edit* What to if your Kemper sounds different when loud/quiet”.
  • One thing I noticed with a real tube power amp driving a real 4x12 cab is if I use all the power from the tube power amp it clean ups the gain with too much top end. The Kemper is the pre amp and needs to be loud then the power amp adds the thump and moves the air in the 4x12's - a glorious experience frfr's cannot provide for a band level volume!

  • One thing I noticed with a real tube power amp driving a real 4x12 cab is if I use all the power from the tube power amp it clean ups the gain with too much top end. The Kemper is the pre amp and needs to be loud then the power amp adds the thump and moves the air in the 4x12's - a glorious experience frfr's cannot provide for a band level volume!

  • some of us have tried this, but the profiles will sound very different than the originals.

    If you only use 1 or 2 profiles of a similar amp, then that will be “your signature sound “

    It may sound great but it sort of defeats the purpose of the Kemper.

    I’ve gone back to struggling with a DXR 10 Yamaha monitor. I’ve owned my Kemper for 8

    yrs and am still learning. It’s not really like plugging into a Champ..hahahahaha. It requires

    lots of experimenting but I think it’s worth it...I never owned any other gear for 8 years.

    If you play loud and can afford it, maybe you would consider a Kone Kabinet. I would, but

    I’m not gigging now. Too bad they don’t have a low power practice version, maybe an 8”.

  • I used to use a guitar 4x12, then FRFR and now the Kabinet....


    The Kemper makes you re-think the signal chain for live. With a regular amp, backline sound drove your front line sound, hence it was important to get the best sound possible, to then translate via mikes into the PA.


    With the KPA this is not the case. The monitor sound is not the same sound that comes out of the PA.


    So, does a KPA not have the "thump" that people miss? Maybe not ( and I dispute this)...but even if it doesn't, so what? My priority is FOH. As long as my monitor is good enough for me to enjoy playing, Im not bothered.


    Having gigged with the Kabinet, it bangs it out and I'm very happy with it - for me it bridges the real cab and FRFR gap well.

    Does it sound the same as a 4x12? Nope. Is 4x12 the utopia sound? Nope. I'll take the simple form factor and versatility of the Kabinet over a 4x12 any day.

  • ....to the point that I haven't used my 4 x12 in about 2 years now. Its become redundant like my valve amps.