Posts by Per

    I dislike the marketing bullcrap that’s being pulled, it feels very underhanded. But I also think there are some take-aways from the discussions surrounding this that are worth considering.


    The point of profiling for me is to automatically capture a signal chain, amp, cab, mic, any mic preamp, room.


    I bought into that with the Kemper, so honestly I don’t want to adjust definition, pure cab or any other setting to get it right. I don’t want to refine really. This stuff defeats the purpose of having a system automate setting parameters to me. It’s things we’ve grown used to doing over the years but maybe we shouldn’t have.


    I also really don’t want to have certain combinations not work.


    The NDSP a has the single advantage of workflow on capture. You don’t futz with it to get it right, you don’t appear to have to go through any voodoo to work out the right combinations that will capture, no standing on mountaintops at midnight with a front left paw of a hare, it works with mic pres, power+preamp distortion, there don’t appear to be any amp makes that don’t capture, you don’t have to stay in AB mode to get an accurate sound etc. In user terms it’s just simpler, that makes it appear more accurate.


    Here’s what I’d change about the Kemper -


    1. On profile reset any relevant settings to factory default for most accurate profile and store them as part of the profile include pure cab


    2. Store a spectral IR of room background noise at its quietest point, then offer the option to recreate background noise by filtering a simple white noise with this IR as part of the profile. This will keep the AB sound even outside of AB. Either that or work out a psychoacoustic compensator that adjusts the frequency response of the profile against the background noise to give you a sound that seems to be where it should be once the background noise loop is removed


    3. Improve the algorithm to handle edge cases, amps that currently have problems, mic pres in the signal chain, power + preamp distortion etc


    4. Investigate whether the algorithm can be enhanced to reduce the need for refining further (possibly obviated by 3)


    To my ears from all the demos the NDSP has its own sound just as the Kemper does, the NDSP sounds closer to a classic amp sim. More compressed, more glassy, gives me AxeFX and Line6 vibes. That tends to feel very immediate. I prefer a more analog hairy tone and I think the Kemper is still better there, but it’s reminded me that there is room for improvement on that core stuff and that’s a good thing, especially as the Kemper is still being updated with cool new features after all this time. Something that I doubt the NDSP will when it reaches this age.


    Christoph is a workflow guy so I am sure he will examine all these possibilities and everyone’s thoughts on this stuff (and all the marketing fud) and will probably mull over many concepts none of us could think about to create the perfect response.

    Your profile is spot on, beside the differences in the bass response. Such deviations can easily be controlled by refining with that same palm mutes and checking again. Takes 30 seconds.

    I think the point they’re making is about how they feel, their own uncertainty, not necessarily the true accuracy, so it’s more about the process/user experience.


    My own take-away from this is that users are now willing to accept an “extended profiling” mode that takes longer and just gets it more accurate out of the gate so that refining isn’t needed. They want to be more assured.

    I think a lot of people are hitting the convertors (I actually think DA as much as AD) harder than they should, in all of these they exhibit that fizziness in the upper mids that to me is a key part of digital clipping + amp sim.


    I think we need about 3-4x the headroom (maybe even up to 10x) currently available on every hardware sim simply because guitarists love loud and will slam them and completely ignore good engineering approaches on this stuff in the pursuit of “tone” i.e. ear shattering drum silencing loudness.

    In that video the capture sounds decent but seems simpler than the real amp somehow.


    I hate the term because it’s so overused and ambiguous in nature but the real amp sounded more “3D” to me, maybe more room sound? It really felt more alive. The capture was lacking something in those upper mids again, no detail there; not quite as complex a grain to the distortion and not quite as lively. Just as if it’s very broad brushstrokes.


    I still believe the next step in accuracy for these units isn’t in the amp capture itself but in the room capture. The air is what brings an amp alive. I had hoped the technology for either the Kemper or the QC would do this by now, I’m tired of dead sound.

    Ok look for those two last videos those guys can play, phenomenally talented guitarists. But those tones sound like they’re from a POD, sorry they just do. Now maybe that’s actually just a compliment to Line6 for getting it right first time when it came to what a lot of guitarists want but I mean seriously - you get a $1.5k alleged “amp replicating beast” and you focus on making it sound like an early sim from the 90s?!? Where are the people knocking out Hendrix or SRV tones? White Stripes even? Tones that are pure unadulterated mid to low gain amps, and not just country chick’n picking either.

    Updates for specific Roland products is free.

    Sure for the base thing but to complete the product you have to pay more. You’re always left in the position of them selling you the features that should have been included from the start but were rationed out instead to make more money.


    Its a business strategy, you may not like it, may not want to acknowledge it, but it’s there. And for consumers it sucks.

    Think about the awfulness that is Roland Cloud. This stuff can happen and everyone is worse off for it. Always vote with your wallets!

    I wouldn’t assume anything will change with how much control is given to users on the QC. It’s so easy to assume that manufacturers have the same vision as their customers but they don’t at all. They may say “this is it, in 3 years there will be OctaCortex”. And then there may be no difference there and everyone will complain about rationing features. Or they may be very responsive and change it all. I guess the question is, how responsive have they been with their plugins?


    If anyone buys the QC then they need to buy it for what it is now, not what it could potentially be in a few years time. Otherwise it’s a recipe for customer disappointment.

    There’s a huge amount of hype right now but I do have to admit I was more impressed by the clean and low gain than the high gains samples I heard. They had good clarity and sounded more like the clean sounds I’m used to from real amps, and I feel it’s an area where the Kemper sounds more like a DI than the amp itself and tends to not dirty up with quote the same snarl whe digging in, however I’m sure that’s a hop skip and a jump away if Christoph felt it needed to be addressed, the SLO clean example in particular sounded great on the QC.


    The big problem I have though is all the videos compare the QC to the Kemper but not the real amp. It’s super annoying because you can’t determine which is closer to the real amp, only which you prefer the sound of and a certain production sheen may sound better in isolation but you can’t get rid of it and sculpt the sound as much as something that’s just true to the source.


    I am interested in how it does it’s cab and the ability to set up different mics. If it’s just an IR loader that ignores your real cab’s sound then bugger that. If instead it can separate cab from amp as the Kemper does and also allow you to virtually change the mic you used originally keeping your own cab and room in the picture then that would be impressive.

    To me the pedal capture is less impressive. I mean maybe my ears are just atrophied but honestly they just sounded like a single pedal with a match eq slapped on it and a guesstimate at the gain level. Otoh the source pedals themselves have this tendency to all sound kinda similar.

    It seems the QC has four advantages being pushed in marketing against the competition - the GUI (which is subjective), capturing pedals, dual (or more) amps, and the price.


    The sound hasn’t yet convinced me but those four things are IMO still a strong argument. However if Kemper reduced their price and added in pedal capture, or released a 2 with complex routing and dual paths (and better input convertors, as honestly try your Kemper using spdif in sometime from a nice card and you soon find that high end detail) then the QC would just be yet another pretender.

    Yes, I'd even say it's an epic fail as an influencer to leave the compressor in the chain while profiling with the Kemper. It’s user error. And it’s embarrassing.

    Well in this case I believe the point is to show that the QC can capture the entire signal chain including that because it’s a known limitation of the Kemper, but the Kemper does an admirable job anyway (though he should have refined it). It’s trying to show how technology is advancing. Having said that for me the result on the QC has this upper mids fizz/flat sound and lacks the complexity at the lower mids end of the amp while the Kemper nails that but has a little too much bass and loses a little treble detail.

    There’s some upper mids push/compression/fuzz in the QC samples I’ve heard thus far and some missing complexity in the lower end. But it does sound good in other areas.