Thanks for this. I think you are totally right. I have tried a lot of profiles but only those found on the RigExchange, without purchasing any.
I found the MB profiles to be quite poor for what i want but i can see how they would be suitable for other styles.
If i'm not mistaken, a merged profile would be what i would need? Is that right? Would i get a good enough "in the room" sound though? I'm not looking for perfection but to be be happy that i can be heard in a band mix and get that "feel". I guess i need to start paying for profiles to get me there.
What I would recommend would be to post a new thread: Looking for profiles that sound like "(xyz bands that influence your music)". Get some recommendations from guys who like the same kind of stuff that you like. They'll point you to commercial profilers who do that genre well, and maybe even a few gems from Rig Manager.
This is exactly what I did after my initial disappointments searching for profiles. I landed on MB, Top Jimi and some other stuff because guys who play my style of music recommended them. I have no doubt that there are profilers out there who are just as outstanding for the kind of music that you play, and the best way to find them is to just ask kindred spirits. This is the most positive vibe forum of any place I've ever been on the Internet, and guys will bend over backwards here to help you. It's truly an oddity in the animal kingdom.
As for merged, a good enough "in the room" sound, etc., I would ask the guys who respond to your post with profile recommendations. They all have the same concerns as you do, so they'll have a useful perspective on merged vs studio, passive vs FRFR, the Kabinet, etc. in addition to telling you what profiles they like. And because you're asking for advice based on known bands, you'll be able to speak a common language. If they say it sounds like the guitarist from the xyz band on their second album, you'll understand what that means.
Seriously, I can't recommend enough that you just post and ask for specific advice from people who share your taste in music. This is a great group of guys and they've helped me a ton. I'm sure they'll help you as well.