Posts by meambobbo

    +1 to CK. Most of the time I dial up a profile and am like WTF, I visit the amp parameters and notice that Definition is set to 10. This definitely does not work for my EBMM JPM with a crunch lab in the bridge for most profiles. I turn that down and the tone fattens up. Then if I want additional pre-EQ shaping, I use a Studio EQ to dial in the sweet spots.

    Talking about sample rates, I just wanted to clear up that CK has said the Profiler EXPORTS at 44.1 but has different internal sample rates based on what it's actually doing. For the amp emulation, he said the sample rate gets much, much higher - something ridiculous like 300 kHZ. Converting from one sample rate to another obviously takes clock cycles, but it can occur at the very end of the chain. In other words, it would not require all the software to be reworked. I am not sure why the decision was made to only use 44.1 kHZ, but from my knowledge it doesn't seem too difficult to allow conversion to a different rate, provided the memory/processor power is available.

    Haha, I run into this issue too, because I'll save variations of a rig as ___1, ___2, etc. but when I get to ___10 then the rig left/right buttons go to ___1 and ___2 instead of ___9.

    So a last button would be sweet.

    Someone had PM'ed me about specific frequencies to EQ and how exactly to improve one's tone. I ended up typing a bit more than I thought I would. The answer is that it really depends on context, but here's my full response. Hopefully it will help others...

    To be clear, pre-EQ and post-EQ affect the distortion tone and the frequency balance, respectively.

    For Pre-EQ, usually there's no need to make narrow cuts/boosts - they tend to sound bad. I like larger cuts/boosts. The first thing I'll adjust is bass. If the distortion is a bit too rough and has a muddy, low-end breakup, I like to reduce bass. I like to use the Studio EQ and set the low shelf to about -2 db and start with frequency around 300 HZ. This should mildly clean up the low end. Then I reduce the gain to about -6 db and try to notice when the bass gets totally clear and tight. You don't want to cut too much or you lose tone. Then I start to reduce the frequency, trying to see where I get the most punch without losing tightness. Usually this is around 150 HZ, but it depends.

    You can do the same thing for the highs but in reverse. Do a high shelf +4 db boost and slowly move the frequency downwards from 5 kHZ to around 1 kHZ. You should find a sweet spot that adds extra harmonic richness to the tone but isn't too sharp and harsh.

    You can also use the mid-bands on the Studio EQ. Some suggestions are to cut around 500-800 HZ - this should make the distortion a little rougher. Or boost around 1 kHZ to 1.5 kHZ. This gives the tone a Tube Screamer-like effect, getting a bit more djent to the tone, but can sound a bit like a cocked wah pedal if overdone.

    I don't have a preference of Studio EQ vs. Graphic EQ here. Usually you can make settings on either one for the exact same effect, because I'm not doing any narrow or extreme boosts/cuts. I just find it generally easier to find the sweet spots using the Studio EQ - trying to adjust the Graphic means turning more knobs, but it does have the advantage that you can visually see how you're impacting the signal. One of my EQ presets is a Graphic EQ with all the bands set on almost a perfect diagonal line, so I'm cutting bass and boosting treble progressively up the frequency range.

    Again, you can get similar effects from a Distortion effect with Drive set to 0 or a Treble Booster. I just prefer EQ because Distortion units tend to add some color/compression and EQ allows a bit more control than a booster.

    Now for post-EQ...

    There's no real right/wrong answer here. Your profile is already going to sound like your amp/cab/mic, which includes how you EQ your amp and your mic positioning. So that's your starting point, and in some cases; you don't need any additional EQ.

    When you make your own profile, there's two kind of philosophies you can take. One is to try to capture a profile of a tone you've already tweaked to fit in your mix. So the profile includes all your boost pedals, maybe a mic pre-amp, and some DAW EQ adjustments. It's going for a very specific snapshot of the amp, and once you have it, you'd only make mild tweaks to sweeten the tone as you are mastering your tracks.

    The other philosophy is to try to profile the amp at rather "neutral" settings, so that the profile can later be tweaked to make a wider variety of tones.

    My guide was really targeted for those who (like me) aren't profiling their own gear, but are downloading other people's profiles; but it would also apply to the "neutral" amp profile mentioned above.

    The best thing you can do to figure out what EQ tweaks can improve the tone are to record a DI and set it to loop in your DAW and send that into your Kemper. (Or just use a looper if you have one). When you aren't playing you definitely hear things better. Get some drums and bass going. If you absolutely can't get your own drums and bass or even find a suitable backing track, you can import a track from ___ band you like the sound of - in this case, pan that track 50% L and pan your guitar sound 50% R to get some separation. Now you can tweak EQ and really hear how it affects the sound in a mix.

    If you demo a bunch of the most praised metal profiles out there (Lasse Lammert, Ola Englund, and Keith Merrow's rig packs), you'll notice they are all very different sounding. Keith's tones are very upper-midrange focused, Ola's are kind of thin-sounding, and Lasse's are more wide-open but they cover a lot of different ground from one rig to the next. Playing solo guitar on these rigs can definitely sound very off-putting. But if you listen to any of their mixes, the tone is big and powerful and pretty natural-sounding. This just comes back to mixing, which always requires context.

    So for example, if your mix has keyboards, bass, drums, and vocals, you need all the instruments to find their spot in the mix. If you EQ'ed every instrument to sound flat accross all frequencies, the resulting mix would sound awful. Everything would be "on top" of each other, and "fighting for space" in the mix. This is even more the case for heavy metal music, where the playing is fast and technical and leaves little space. But that doesn't mean boost the kick drum at X frequency, the bass at Y frequency, and the guitar at Z frequency. The numbers are arbitrary. One mix might like to emphasize bass around 200 HZ, which means the guitars will likely need to dip around there. The guitars would then have very little punch and sound very thin on their own. Another mix might emphasize bass around 100 HZ. Now there's room for the guitars to have more punch. So it's a real balancing act, and there's a reason there are people paid to professionally mix albums.

    As a learning experience, I'd advise you to do the looping/reamping suggestion I mentioned above, where you can hear your guitar tone in a mix. First tweak the Bass, Mids, Treb, Pres knobs to get the guitars to sound balanced - not too bright and not too dark with the right amount of overall midrange. Now use the Studio EQ and set one of the mid-bands to +6 db. Now sweep the frequency up and down slowly. Every now and then toggle the EQ on/off. See which frequencies help the guitars cut through and sit nicely the mix. When you've found good frequencies, you should be able to reduce the guitar volume and the mix will still be nice and full-sounding, but the guitars will have more clarity. Try the same test but use - 6db; which frequencies removed help make the guitars clearer. This will give you starting points on how to think about EQ'ing. You may find a spot that has the biggest impact on the tone - now you have to figure out how wide/narrow and how large your boost/cut should be. Start with subtle changes.

    Always remember to try toggling your EQ on/off every now and then to see what it's actually doing and how it's contributing. Also, if you are boosting a lot via EQ, try turning the Volume parameter down a bit. Sometimes you THINK you like an EQ setting, but it's only because it's boosting the volume. A good EQ tweak should sound good even when it is reducing the overall volume of the guitars.

    Also, you have to think about multi-tracking. Most metal rhythm guitars are double-tracked and sometimes quad-tracked. This will make a thin-sounding tone sound a bit thicker and dial back some harshness. If a tone seems a bit harsh and cold, try double-tracking it before tweaking.

    Remember that most bedroom tones you dial in outside of a mix tend to have more distortion and less midrange than tones that work well in a mix. Many of the guitar tracks on albums can sound a bit dull and weak on their own. This doesn't mean you should try to make your tone dull and weak; only that it gives you a starting suggestion - if your guitars sound too harsh or lack clarity in a mix, start by trying to reduce distortion and add some midrange.

    I know this is a lot of info and it's a bit abstract, but I am not sure I could be more specific since it all really depends on your subjective preferences as well as what your mix is like, and the style you are playing.

    i'm kicking myself for not bringing a USB key with me on my trip now. most of your profiles sound excellent, and with the isolated room, I bet it came out even better! keep them coming!

    I think the biggest strength here, other than Michael's excellent ears in the process, is that his profiles are mixes of multiple amps and/or (multi-mic'ed?) cabinets. It's an approach I have a great fondness for.

    I would love to have the ability to mixdown multiple profiles into new profiles.

    As far as protecting one's profile IP, it seems that most profiles are pretty unique. It might be easy to change tags and the editable parameters, but the rest of the file would still match the original, and could obviously be shown to be a direct duplication. I have not found piracy to be prevalent in the community, and the profile prices are so reasonable the point is nearly moot.

    I'm a bit of an idiot that I just figured this out...

    When you are in Browser mode and turn the browse knob, you get the 2-column list of rigs. This way seems initially a quicker way to jump around rigs. I found I could get around quicker turning the browse knob vs. clicking the Rig right/left buttons. Also, turning off auto-load makes things a bit faster but going from A-Z can take a while (esp when you're like me and haven't deleted your unused factory rigs yet).

    What I didn't realize (and this is kind of embarrassing it took this long to figure this out...), but when you are in Browser mode but have NOT used the browse knob to enter the 2-column window (so you're just looking at the current rig name), using the Rig Up/Down buttons navigate by the first character of the rig name. So going from A-Z now takes 26 clicks. So I can get from my first to last rig in about 2 seconds. Yay

    This is probably pretty obvious to most but somehow eluded me. Hope this helps someone!

    yeah the cabinet sounds amazing. This is the Amp Factory's Mark V pack. The amp profile is freakin awesome too. I think this is my new favorite. Compared to most profiles, it's very midsy, but everything is very organic. It really sounds A LOT like a REAL AMP AND CAB IN THE FREAKIN ROOM. I of course use a Studio EQ to cut right at 750 HZ a la Petrucci. You can probably get by without it using the EQ block. I encourage you to cough up the ~$8.50 on this pack. The cleans and crunchs are nice too.

    My only caveat is that the amp profiles are not dialed in like I like - I made a Graphic EQ preset called "bright" (EDIT: I put this in the stomp section) that cuts bass and boosts treble, which each band having more and more volume, so like a diagonal line. This dials in that searing, crisp, tight sound that I prefer on the Mark V.

    ok, i just experienced the volume spike. it only happened on one profile I tested. I will upload it later, but it is a slightly modified version of the "5150BLOCK" rig. I put a Green Scream in front, turn Drive to 0, Tone to 0, Volume to -5 and turn Clean Sense to -12 db. The Gain on the profile was pretty saturated by default, so I turned it back to get more of a crunch feel. Turning on the Green Scream made the tone cleaner but much louder. As I turned the Green Scream volume up, the sound gets lower and lower as it gets more and more distorted. I also tried a Clean Sense of 0 and -4 (my usual setting) db. It clearly had an effect on volumes, but the volume with the stomp on was clearly louder.

    FWIW, if I used the Green Scream like I normally would on the patch, with everything at 0, and the rig with the default gain of full saturation, the effect on the tone and level was completely as expected. It just made the distortion a bit tighter.

    Now I tried to replicate the issue on another rig, 6505 Crunch+ I think it's called. This time the Distortion worked as expected - no volume spike. I tested all the same exact settings - everything sounded exactly as expected - like a real amp and stomp box.

    So it seems the issue may be rig specific. As I do more research I'll try to find a pattern. I don't have a USB stick, so I can't upload the patch, but I'll send it to the support email address when I get home tomorrow.

    I am on 2.2.0 firmware.

    If you guys enjoy my work, than I am sure CK appreciates it too. I've never seen anyone so involved with his customers to improve his product.

    of course, AFAIK there is NO ONE at Line 6 listening to their customers and attempting to improve their product, lol. and there is no interaction with company employees and customers on the forums.

    yeah, the clip is pretty bad I must admit - I was trying to match Steve at first, but then I wanted to diverge so you could hear the different tones - I panned the original track a bit to one side and panned my recorded playing to the other side. It ended up a mess. I just didn't want to make a really long clip or to take the discipline to learn the whole song.

    anyhow, you should get an idea of what to expect from the clip. I think I ended up with too much presence, though. I was kind of using his Erotic Nightmares rhythm tone as an idea of how to EQ things, since the beginning of that song is just solo guitar; but his lead tone has a lot of that brightness rolled off. But yes, I agree that the sweetness and sustain is there.

    I bet if I auditioned more cabs I could find a better fit. I think that's one of the keys here. Also, Vai's tone is wider than my patch. I used the "Space" feature on the output to widen it, but really the Widener EQ or a better reverb setting would work better.

    Direct Mix works well to add some clarity to chords if you use a high gain tone - even if used subtly. But if you can't get it working like you want, try the Clarity parameter - this definitely cleans up the distortion without taking away the aggression, and you can go further here than with Direct Mix. With Direct Mix at 100%, it's quite clear you've got two separate sounds getting mixed together.

    Also, if you want to use Direct Mix, I suggest using a compressor in a Stomp effect to prevent the clean guitar from being too poppy and having too much attack to blend well with the distorted tone.

    Theoretically, 44.1 kHZ is exactly the same as 96 or 192 kHZ for the purposes of human hearing. All frequencies below 1/2 the sample rate can be perfectly represented digitally. 22 kHZ is the top of the human hearing range.

    Bit depth represents the amplitude of each sample, and as you can imagine the higher this is, the more detail that can be heard.

    In practice, none of that means anything unless your A/D and D/A conversions are accurate. Higher bit depth would likely result in greater accuracy, but this depends on the converters themselves. I'd prefer 99% accurate converters running 16 bit @ 44.1 kHZ over 95% accurate running 24 bit @96 kHZ. If accuracy is held constant, then of course the higher the better. But at 100% accuracy, the sample rate is moot (concerning human hearing).

    I run SPDIF at 0 db from the Kemper, but I do find lots of rigs I download are pushing the Output into clipping. I also find I can get clipping when my interface monitors between -2 and -5 db, even though it appears to have more headroom. If anything, I might boost the SPDIF send, so that my interface clips at the same point that the KPA does, which will make it easier to level my rigs. For actual recording, I think I'd do as you said and reduce the SPDIF level so that it's exactly where I want to track my guitars.

    I think SPDIF is the highest fidelity option (although the 44.1 kHZ clock may not work for some people) - you bypass a set of D/A - A/D conversions and a run of cable that can result in signal degredation and increased noise. If you have to reduce the volume in the Kemper, I don't think that translates to a loss of fidelity. 24 bits translates to 16,777,216 discrete volume levels per sample. My Pod HD's volume pedal moves in 0.1% increments, which means 1,000 discrete volume levels. You CAN hear the "stair-stepping" in volume if you listen real carefully for it at high volume, but it's very, very subtle. 24 bit resolution is 16x that. CD's only use 16 bits.

    If the Kemper stores this data as a floating point number, reducing the volume is a moot point - there is no loss of resolution, even if you reduce the volume by 1,000,000%. If it's not, you would still have to reduce the volume exponentially before you started to notice a loss of quality. A -6 db cut is approximately 1/2 the volume. You'd need something like a < -30 db drop before it would even be possible to hear the difference, maybe more.

    If you don't have any clock dependencies, I would use SPDIF, but this will require using the Kemper as the master @ 44.1 kHZ. If you have plug-ins or other hardware that needs a different rate, then I would use XLR. The main difference between mono 1/4" and XLR is that the XLR is balanced, which makes it less susceptible to interference. Might not be an issue depending on your environment and cable lengths, but I always say better safe than sorry.