What to buy...decisions, decisions #2

Discussion in 'Gear & Equipment' started by drunkbuddha, Sep 16, 2016.

  1. drunkbuddha

    drunkbuddha SS.org Regular

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    Hello all. It's been a while since I've been on here, and back for the same kinda reasons, to get your wonderful and knowledgeable opinions and feedback. I sold my H&K mkII Triamp a couple years ago, been using an old boogie combo since. I love the little bastard, but im now in the market for a new high gain amp. Many people are telling me to go with the Kemper. Ive heard good things and bad about them. I'm a tube guy, always have been. So not sold on the Kemper. I've been looking at Engl (specifically the Invader 2), the H&k MKIII Triamp (4k?!?!), Framus, and a few others. I play all styles, but my heart is in the tech/prog/death metal vein. Money Isn't the issue, but not really looking to spend more then 5k for an amp and cab. Any help or opinions would be appreciated. Thanks much.
    :hbang:
     
  2. lewis

    lewis SS.org Regular

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    Trust me you go powered kemper into a cabinet, you genuinely cant hear or feel a difference from tube amps. The feel is identical somehow. Its a magic box honestly and each amp profile is like 2kb each or.something so basically you can download unlimited profiles in like 10 mins.

    I vote kemper
     
  3. drunkbuddha

    drunkbuddha SS.org Regular

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    What kind of cab would you suggest? If i buy one, it would be the rack version. Buy the one with the 600w power amp? Or use an external. The more I look into it, the more I'm liking it, but some complain of latency and that it loses attack. I'd have to go to Chicago to try one for myself, this .... town has nothing
     
  4. lewis

    lewis SS.org Regular

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    let me show you this video, which for massive Tube snobs, they are shown right up and are converted totally for the Kemper. Its a blind test and they are so certain they know which is which etc -



    Cab wise its a tough one because it really depends on what you like from sound rather than someone advising you on their own tone preference. Perhaps work out what band has the closest thing your are also aiming for, then try to work out what Cabs they are using?.

    Otherwise its go to a shop and try running through loads but I appreciate thats probably impossible.

    Also yeah save your money and just go with the all in one powered rack, rather than mess about with other rack poweramps. They arent really needed at all.
     
  5. Spinedriver

    Spinedriver SS.org Regular

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    That's the thing about the Kemper, people say it's too expensive because it's a digital amp but it's roughly the same price as a Dual Rectifier and cheaper than a Diezel or other high end tube amp.

    However with the Kemper, if you don't have access to high end amps you'd like to profile, as far as I know, the online community for profile sharing is getting bigger every day. If I had the cash, I'd grab one in a heartbeat before even looking at an all tube head. That's the beauty of the Kemper, when shopping for a tube amp, do you want a 5150, Rectifier, Framus, Marshall, etc... they all have different tones and whichever you buy, that's what you get. With the Kemper, you can literally get them ALL ! I'm sure there will be slight variances from the real thing but would you rather have 100% of one tone or 95% of dozens ?

    The big question is though, how comfortable are you with editing patches ? Some people really don't like navigating menus on digital gear. They just want to turn a couple of knobs & get to it. With the Kemper, it'll probably take a little bit of time in the beginning to get some patches built but once they are, it's no different than using a live amp. Also, as the Captain said in the video, he thought he could pick up on the latency and it turns out that he couldn't.

    Here's part two where he explains that he was literally so blown away by the fact that he got both amps wrong in the 1st demo, he wanted a 2nd go-round just to make sure it wasn't a fluke.

     
  6. FILTHnFEAR

    FILTHnFEAR Infidel

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    I've never tried one, so I cant say for certain, but it's hard to argue against a Kemper. Especially if money isn't an issue.

    I know for a fact there would be a learning curve for me. I don't really like navigating through digital menu's and setting up patches. I love having actual knobs and everything right in front of me. But all the possibilities of a Kemper would make me willing to push through that.

    However OP, if you decided to go the real amp route, that Triamp MkIII would be high on my list of choices. As would Engl and Freidman. Why did you decide to sell your MkII, btw?
     
  7. drunkbuddha

    drunkbuddha SS.org Regular

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    Selling the MkII was hard. Just had another kid, money was getting tight, and wasn't gigging as much, so.. :wallbash: I'm now sold on the Kemper. A friend of mine owns a pretty popular recording studio in the area, he's the one who told me to start looking into the Kemper. I know you can download sound profiles, but I called him last night and told him I'd be coming there to profile every damn amp that comes through his door. As far as cabinets are concerned, I just want a sturdy, well made cab loaded with maybe greenbacks or vintage 30's. Was just looking at the Engl Pro, kinda pricey, but would suit my needs. I really appreciate the feedback guys. :bowdown:
     
  8. drunkbuddha

    drunkbuddha SS.org Regular

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    I'd also like to say that I would "thank" each of you individually, but I haven't been on here enough for it to let me do it. So, THANK YOU! Keep the info coming, would love to hear more thoughts and opinions on the subject. It will be a few weeks till I close on the house I'm selling, so I'll be waiting till then to purchase gear, but yes, I'm sold on the Kemper:shred: And again, THANK YOU
     
  9. Womb raider

    Womb raider ESP Addict

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    Kempers are flat out awesome. If you're a tone junkie, there is a ton of tweaking that you can do that will keep you occupied for a long time. If you're like me and can get by with good enough, then the unit is just plug and play. I downloaded some free profiles and was up and running in a few minutes. Its so good, I sold all my tube amps. Perhaps one day I'll yearn for another tube, but for now, the portability and tones I'm getting out of the Kemper are amazing.
     
  10. lewis

    lewis SS.org Regular

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    good thing about the Kemper too is,

    yes there are loads of options to dive into and start tweaking until you are overwhelmed etc BUT

    all the profiles, the core sounds, are soooo good, that you can just treat it like a normal amp and only use the gain knob, the EQ knobs and the volume knob and still get stunning results (forgetting the other, deeper parameters even exist)
     
  11. wakjob

    wakjob SS.org Regular

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    Through decades of playing around with processors, I found the Kemper pretty intuitive and easy to navigate. The layout is very much like a real amp and pedals to tweak.

    Really good preset sounds right outta the gate, so minimal adjusting to start with.
     
  12. budda

    budda Guiterrorizer Contributor

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    If you want to have a sweet tech death rig on the cheap, buy a vintage JCM800, the 412 of your choice, and a decent overdrive pedal. Make sure the 800 has good tubes and the filter caps are in good condition (parts age), and then melt faces.
     
  13. 4Eyes

    4Eyes SS.org Regular

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    kemper does sound great indeed, but they claim that it sounds exactly like the amp that's profiled. even from the latest chapman/captain video it can be heard there is a difference, they've mentioned it in the video as well, they could hear the difference between sounds.

    my other concern is and I didn't see it/hear it yet (I don't have posibility to try kemper myself), but once amp is profiled to kemper - do controls behave in the same way like it's on the real amp?

    if you're tube guy and you're looking for some bruutz I would give 5150/mesa cab a shot
     
  14. SnowfaLL

    SnowfaLL SS.org Regular

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    the one thing that bugs me about that video is that while there was a difference, they could of adjusted the kemper slightly to get rid of the difference.. they didnt though. Either way, it is hard to tell which is which, but a kemper gets you there. I had one, and dug it but in the end, im not a tube guy anyways, I'm an axe-fx type (start with a base amp and work my way setting up a patch)
     
  15. 4Eyes

    4Eyes SS.org Regular

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    on oposite site, one amp was always louder (Kemper), knowing the fact that Kemper amp is 600W it should be pretty easy to identify kemper, even it's cheating :lol:
     
  16. TheWarAgainstTime

    TheWarAgainstTime "TWAT" for short

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    I love my Kemper and get some killer recording/headphone tones from it, but at the end of the day I like the simplicity of a good amp and cab with pedals as needed. As long as I can play above a bedroom volume, that is. I feel that 90% of the time I'm not using the Kemper nearly to its potential, and when I'm at home I'm just used to the feel and sound of my full stereo rig :shrug:

    I'm not trying to discourage the Kemper in any way, though. In fact, if I were to join up with a band and start playing out again, I'd likely use my Kemper direct in and with a power amp/cab for stage sound. All I'm trying to add to the equation is the thought of how many sounds you really ever go for, what "real" amps would cover those (plus your Boogie) and how simple you want to keep everything.
     
  17. TedEH

    TedEH Cromulent

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    The Chappers videos make it hard to argue against a Kemper for sure. I'm very curious how much the volume level makes a difference to "accuracy".

    I would imagine that with enough time put into it, someone could find either an amp or a feature or something that can't be recreated quite as easily with a Kemper, but it would be a matter of finding some element that it doesn't emulate/simulate. Something like maybe the bajjilion switches on the back of some Mesa amps maybe, which you'd probably need to create separate profiles for. Or things like being able to swap tubes quickly for very subtle changes in feel. I don't know if the Kemper is also trying to simulate the effect of a tube power section, so maybe that's a factor. In the videos I could hear more of a difference on cleaner sounds than the gain sounds. Maybe it's perfect for gain sounds, but is missing some subtleties or nuances of clean tones.

    That's all a stretch though- really trying to nitpick for nitpickings sake.

    I imagine I'll still always want tube amps though. In the same way that I would prefer an actual NES to an emulator. Is it 90% nostalgia at that point? Probably. But I still chose the old thing.
     
  18. Carvinkook

    Carvinkook SS.org Regular

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    5k is a nice budget in which you could get just about anything on the market.. Intended use would be the biggest factor. And while im on the fence about the axefx/kemper craze, I see its validity.

    Me myself, Ive got a few amps and an elevenrack. All of the amps are second hand, but I feel better about the probability of them breaking down and being able to fix them. As opposed to an axefx or kemper. Like your old dvd or bluray player, Multi-fx unit, anything digital just seems to have a shelf life.. And a steep buyers curve.

    There are 40 year old tube amps that people are still jonesing for..

    How about those Axefx Ultra's and Digitech GSP's.. sure theres someone who will claim they are the greatest ever, but its old tech now..theres new and improved.

    I kinda like the feel of knowing an amp.. Back it down, open it up.. let it roar!!
    I have the Elevenrack and it suits me fine at 4am when the family is asleep and Im just..awake.. throw on some headphones, maybe record an idea real quick or just saturate the hell out of things and let the fingers fly...as with alot of digital stuff the clean stuff is cool, plus I downloaded a ton of presets people made up.. I got it for $300 NEW and it can be a mobile recording interface for my laptop in a pinch if need be. Im not trying to sell you on it... Just saying right tool for the job.. What do you want your tools for?
     
  19. Wizard of Ozz

    Wizard of Ozz Arch-Mage of Metal

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    Get an Engl... skip the modelers... I'd go SE EL34 over Invader though. Sounds better, and more midi functions.
     
  20. lewis

    lewis SS.org Regular

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    thing with the Kemper is, the more effort you put into the "profiling stage" the better the finished product.

    Andy Sneap claims the Kemper is so good not only can you not tell when A/B ing it with the actual amp, but that you can actually beat your favorite tone with it aswell. Recording engineers wont be interested in the amp block/patch building route, so that answers the question about is it easy or do the knobs respond like the real amp etc.

    Andy wouldnt have them and use them if that wasnt the case. Ive had the pleasure to meet the guy via video chat whilst I was recording an old band with his good friend Scott Atkins who recorded the first 2 sylosis records. Andy swears by them, although Scotts still a stickler for the actual 5150 II setup he has micd up at his studio.

    regards to the chappers video. In the room the guys obviously couldnt tell. Us at home hear slight differences but...we didnt see the profiling stage. We didnt see how in depth Rebea (spelling) went with the mic'ing up and also the last minute touches. And inspite of that, Chappers genuinely couldnt tell his signature amp from the Kemper. An amp he uses daily, gigs and tours with etc.

    I think if you get hold of some of the best studio Kemper packs, where you know they have done all the very hard work for you and fine tuning until its literally a negligible difference between them, then you can get away with just plug and play.

    for me the Kemper wins in every aspect bar the aura that actually looking at a glowing tube amp infront of you gives off. And really aesthetics aren't that important given alot of people who tour with tube amps, have to hide them up in road/rack cases anyhow.
     

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