I've owned both. My thoughts below- strictly just my opinions. The Axe wins for effects and routing. If you need tons of high quality effects with practically endless parameters for tweaking I'd recommend the Axe. Same goes for routing options. The Kemper's effects are good, but not as good. Also, not as many effects and not as many parameters. Personally, I use very few effects so it was a non-issue for me. Kemper wins for raw amp/cab tone and feel. IMO, it's simply impossible for the Axe to be better than the Kemper in this department. The only thing that beats the Kemper here is the real tube amp. With the Kemper, it's all about the profile. Finding the right profile is THE key to happiness with the Kemper. A good profile sounds and feels 95-99% like the original configuration. By "configuration" I mean the entire chain from which it was profiled- amp, cab, mic, mic placement, mic preamp, etc. That's something that is of extreme importance- the Kemper and the Axe mimic a recorded amp- the cab, mic, and mic placement are all highly influential. This sounds greatly different from what your ears hear when playing an amp in the room. Kemper wins for user-friendliness. With the Axe, I spent all my time tweaking. I could come up with good tones with little effort but I always felt they could be better. Months of tweaking and IR hunting followed. This isn't true for everyone. Some find tones they're completely satisfied with very quickly. If you love to tweak and/or create tones that don't even exist with real amps/do crazy virtual mods to amps the Axe might be more up your alley. With the Kemper, I was very satisfied within hours of plugging it in. However, I did my homework beforehand. I had read the manual a couple of times. I had researched profiles and had even purchased some commercial profiles that I thought would work for me. It was simply a matter of loading them up. I spent way more time playing and recording with the Kemper vs. the Axe. They're both great modeling units (though I feel what the Kemper does is far greater than modeling. The term "modeling" is a bit of a punch in the face for the Kemper). However, I've gone back to real amps for several reasons. For me, nothing beats a real tube amp. The Kemper came close. I bought a Torpedo Reload (attenuator, reamp box, loadbox) for use with my real amps and compared recordings between the Kemper and my real amps/Reload. The Kemper lost, but just slightly. Can't really explain my preference in words. There's just something about a real tube amp. Also, I came to realize how, for just regular practice/jamming/solo playing, I prefer playing through a real guitar cab vs. studio monitors/headphones/PA speakers. Sure, you can run a Kemper or Axe through a real cab but IMO that's when you really start to realize the digital shortcomings. There's just something missing. You know it when you start playing. Call it lack of "three-dimensionality" or not being "organic" or whatever current buzzword you choose but you get my meaning. Some people choose and are happy with playing through monitors or headphones. Sometimes that's an appropriate option. Not my preference, though, for most situations.