Where to start

From WiKPA
Jump to: navigation, search

Setting Input Sensitivity

See Setting Input Sensitivity (Clean/Distorted Sense)

How to register on the Kemper site

Follow this link. In the upper right corner there is a small link to Login. Click on it and then on Sign up as a member. Fill in the form. The requested serial number is reported on a small sticker underneath the unit, and on the last page of the System menu. It starts with a K or an A...

In case you had joined the forum before owning a Kemper Profiler, and now you want to upgrade your status w/o losing your previous information, PS’ storage and the like, just login, click on your name, click on the 3rd tab (Register your amp), enter the serial number and click on Upgrade account.


Introduction

The Kemper Profiler Amplifier is able to “learn” the sound of a given combination and setting of amp+cab+mic, and to reproduce it with astonishing accuracy. Profiling also works with a software amp, be it a plugin or not. Given the way profiles are taken, the accuracy of the final result can be evaluated by comparing the sound coming out of the Profiler (diffused by a monitor or a cab) and the mic’ed amp (or the plugin) listened back through the same monitor or cab. On the other hand, there are other ways to profile an amp which don’t use a mic, or a cab (via a DI for example): even in these cases the comparison will give faithful results only using the same chain for the two signals.

Here’s the link to a good introductory review from the TGP forum. It contains pics and clips showing several characteristics of the machine.

Here you'll find an interview with Christoph Kemper introducing the Profiler, how it works and its historical background.

For a more in-depth explanation see here.


Informational sources about the Profiler

You can learn about the Profiler from several sources:


What to expect from your Profiler

In the words of a user, “I'm more than happy with the Kemper Profiler's amp tones. Just so very tasty. The fact it sounds so good and there's no theoretical limit as to the number of amp profiles which can be created makes it not only a great piece of gear, but a bargain in the long run. Any of you who've owned other modellers, how many times have you found yourself gassing for the newer model or maybe something from a competitor due to new amp included that you always wanted. Those days are over for Kemper Profiler owners.”[1] As long as amps are being improved the Profiler will be there to capture the improvement. You can't ask for a better built in upgrade path than that![2]


Profiler's Sound Signature

Generally, the profiler reproduces the sound of a mic'ed amp. Depending on how you place the mic when profiling, the overall tone of the amp will be changed accordingly.

In the words of Eng. Kemper,

wWhat you get with the actual profiles is a perfect blend what producers and pro guitarists think is the right frequency response of a mic'ed amp. We have not got a single message from the pro's that the frequency response of our profiles are not right. Many Profiler users have problems to get familiar with the sound of "real mic'ed amps". Guitar speakers have that much highs and lows. I believe there is no single profile where the highs have been emphasized during or after the profiling. You control the highs by the angle of the microphone.

-ckemper
 


What to not expect from your Profiler

The Profiler is not able to run two profiles at the same time. The only ways to use two amps are:

  • Take a profile of two amps running together, using the proper mics and mixer combination.
  • Use two Profilers
  • Record dry guitar signal and reamp.

Likely, you can’t load a profile of a pedal\stompbox into a stompbox slot: pedals in the Profiler are modelled. As for profiling a pedal, you can do it with tone- and gain-related pedals only (EQs, fuzzes, compressors, overdrives) but you’ll have to load it as a rig (that is, like an amp).

The tone controls of the Profiler are generic, meaning they do not change their action through the different profiles to mimic the profiled amp's tonestack behaviour. So, if you have more than one “sweet spot” on your amp it's recommended to take as many profiles as the tonestack settings you'll use. There's of course nothing bad in using the Profiler's tonestack: simply it will, in most cases, not reflect the behaviour of the reference amp's controls. On the other hand, it is very powerful, allowing you to get extreme settings which would be impossible to achieve on the reference amp.

Thousands of profiles available

The number of profiles available for the Profiler (included the free ones and the paid-for ones) is steadily increasing; auditioning, tweaking, managing them all can become very time-consuming and basically… endless!

One suggestion that will save you a lot of time, and get you playing the Kemper faster - resist the temptation to download large numbers of profiles all at once! You'll want to download any "must have sounds" that aren't included - go for it! But, it will take some listening time to figure out if the sounds are already in the Kemper, before you'll know if you are missing anything. These rigs are like real amps - they respond well to parameter adjustment, so spending a few minutes with a rig that is close to the sound you want may give you faster results than playing more 50 profiles of that amp. Even just five minutes of playing and tweaking each of the 400+ profiles that are included would be around 40 hours. A five minute listening session with 1000 rigs (the current maximum number of rigs in Browse mode) would take 83 hours, or so. That's an hour a day, for two months and three weeks. As of the end of April, 2013, If someone downloaded every available free profile, it would take approximately ten months, at one hour a day, to give each one a five minute audition.

-paults @ Kemper User Forum, April 29th 2013
 

If you make a backup file before you start auditioning rigs, you can confidently delete any rig that you aren't going to use. It will always be available in your backup file, if you ever need it.

But wait before deleting things, specially the factory rigs (stock profiles)! They have been created by professional studio men and are ready for the mix. So playing them alone may give the wrong impression:

I find very useful to try rigs in different situations: playing on low volume at home, playing in the mix (with backing tracks etc) and on very loud volume in your rehearsal room. It´s very interesting how profiles change when changed the environment. The world of sound is incredible and also very subjective. The other day, while noodling with bass player and drums I was very surprised how good some factory profiles which I considered plain (when playing them alone without bass and drums) sounded excellent!!!!

-Hallan @ Kemper User Forum, April 29th 2013
 

Already it seems that the amount of options is near infinite and really the variable is not really which profiles sound good but which sound good with the guitar your using and your monitoring situation. I have 2 pairs of headphones, and ALTO TS112A, M-Audio nearfields, and a Tech 21 Power Engine and the same profiles sound radically different when played back through each system even when using the same guitar. Pair that with the fact that many users modify profiles to their specific tonal needs (ex I love the Morgan AC20, but my rig is pretty far from the settings on the rig exchange) and user results will vastly differ. At this point, I think new users should first focus on the archetype amps they're familiar with and honestly start with the factory profiles learning how the different parameters work to alter the tone. With the thousands of free and commercial profiles out there, I'd also recommend listening to as many clips of the real amps as they can find online to determine if the underlying tones might work for them unless they simply want to spend a ton of time auditioning a great many profiles, bloating up their Profiler, and eventually hitting the profile limit before having to wipe it clean and start from scratch. I have less than 100 rigs on my box at this point, and really I'm done. Unless I hear about some rather rare amps I've gassed over in the past, I've really got no desire to load another profile onto my box.

-Will_Chen @ Kemper User Forum, April 29th 2013
 

Also, if some rig does not sound excellent to me I simply try another cabinet.. I'm strongly convinced, I feel that cabinets are the most important in creating the sound.. and if you find some rig that you do not like try to change the cabinet.. I use especially Till´s cabinets and few others that I stored from existing profiles which I like (that "in my situation" works well). I think that when you try different cabinets it is quite impossible that you do not find at least one that will suit you very well (excellent). it´s really incredible to observe how sometimes really drastically sound of profiles changes when changing the cabinets.

-Hallan @ Kemper User Forum, April 29th 2013
 

A different approach may be selecting no more than 10-15 basic amps you love\need and tweak from there. You can completely transform a profile using the definition and clarity (and pick, sag, compression) controls. In fact, given a cab you really like the tonal signature of you might be able to get all your tones from a single profile. That said, the profiles aren't so generic that you can manipulate any profile to sound like any amp. You need to start with a profile which has some tonal qualities you're looking for. I utilize the cab character knob a bunch, but haven't used the high and low shift that much as very small moves have a huge impact and it never sounds as good as simply switch the cab to one I like. Additionally, the Studio EQ (our version of a parametric equalizer) allows some very precise tonal carving to really fine tune your tone. The Profiler allows some very, very deep editing of tones. However, some profiles will get you there with no tweaks at all. It’s all about the type of person/player you are and what your goals are with the unit. Some love the fact that they can (in theory) have a profile for every amp in existence while others really only want key tones and could care less what the amp name the profile says. In other words... the Profiler is deep enough for the tweakers and yet simple enough for the non-tweakers. Quite a feat IMHO.


Check out the free rigs and profiles

If you're a new user I'd recommend spending an hour or so going through all the posts in the Free Rigs and Profiles thread. You’ll be able to find descriptions and comments about many profiles, and came across some pearls you might otherwise be missing.


The Rig Exchange

The Rating feature was added later to the Rig Exchange, meaning: there are plenty of excellent profiles with no votes. Also, while some profiles are considered to be outstanding by the large majority, other profiles are one man's go-to workhorse and another man's 'good god, what is THAT!?!?! 0 stars!' - just like it is with tube amps. So take the ratings with a grain of salt. Make your own decisions, otherwise you might miss out!

-DonPetersen @ Kemper User Forum, January 13th 2013
 

Again, beauty (or a great rig) is in the eyes (ears) of the beholder (player/listener). Instead of approaching the 'dilemma' of almost 2.4k profiles from a collectors standpoint (must have all the greatest rigs), a more viable route would be to define what you are looking for first (let's say a great AC30) and then go hunting:

  • check the factory rigs, seriously, sometimes it seems they don't get the recognition they certainly deserve at all;
  • didn't find what you were looking for (haha, AC30, get it!)? Check the Rig Exchange for applicable keywords and type slowly(!) so you don't miss the suggestions the search engine will make;
  • uncheck the 'Cabinets' box;
  • download, audition;
  • identify alternatives that could also work for you (in this case AC15, Matchless, Morgan) and search for those;
  • download, audition;
  • make great music.
-DonPetersen @ Kemper User Forum, January 13th 2013
 

Commercial and Other Rigs/Profiles

Numerous commercial vendors exist using their experience, gear, studio space, and personal style to make a wide variety of profiles. Others do the same for free, but may not necessarily have their rigs on the Rig Exchange. Or it may be preferable to download "packs" as .zip's instead of clicking a bunch of links on the Rig Exchange.

See The Profile Hunt for more info, including pricing.

Profiles & Rigs

The vast majority of the stock profiles are pure profiles; in other words they're not tweaked/improved to become a rig... for example the Peter Fischer profiles. You'll notice, on most of the stock profiles the controls are all set at 12 o'clock, and there's not too many flashing buttons in the Fx sections...and no additional EQs added. When you find a profile that's all lit up with LEDs flashing all over the place, that's a profile that's been tweaked & improved by the author... it's now a rig. So, when you get your Profiler and you think a stock or user profile doesn't sound as good as the commercial profiles, then keep in mind, almost every commercial profile has been tweaked, EQs added, fx added, boosts, compressors, overdrives etc… that's why it sounds better than a pure stock profile. The stock profiles are 'pure raw', they're not tweaked to create a rig. This may sound strange, you would think that the stock profile author would have tweaked his profiles to improve on them, but they left them raw.

Some people get confused between the profiles and rigs and don't think they should have to do any tweaking to get the sound they want but, that is almost never going to be the case. I think you have to open your mind a little and know that just like any other piece of guitar equipment--you have to tweak it to be what you want it. I believe that's why so many think the stock profiles are so lifeless, is because they are raw profiles with no tweaking but, some of them can be excellent once you turn a few knobs.

-Myramyd
 


First things I do with a stock profile:

  • if it's a cleanish profile, I add a compressor to Stomp B (I leave Stomp A for Wah).
  • I also add a bit of compressor in the amp block, press and hold the Amplifier button.
  • I add a Pure Booster to Stomp C.

Do this & suddenly a stock cleanish Fender, Vox, Bad Cat, Matchless, etc profile comes to life.

First things I try with a rock or hi-gain stock profile (many Marshalls, Bogner, Soldano, etc.):

  • I try different cabs/mics... this is where the magic of the Till’s cabs becomes apparent. Just changing the cab makes a huge difference, hardly any other tweaking needed... (Import these cabs into your Profiler immediately you get your Profiler. Create a Cabinet folder in the Shared folder you'll see on your USB stick after you've formatted it on your Profiler... then Import.)
  • I like adding the stomp compressor in Stomp B for every profile, I like a compressor pedal up front on a real pedalboard as well.

Don't forget that many of the factory rigs are raw amps. Not always giving you that 'immediate impressive' feeling, but when you start doing some minor adjustments to suit your guitar/amplification/taste You'll notice how damn nice most of them they are... The EQ and the Definition parameter in the Amp block goes a long way (and some times the compression on clean amps) to just making it suit Your taste. And then start messing with the fx's and experimenting with different cabs... the sky is the limit...

I almost always return a downloaded profile to its original state (disabling stomps and effects), setting power sagging, pick and compressor on the Amp page to '0', disable the Stack EQ and make sure the Cabinet is in its default setting (all four parameters @ '0') as well before dismissing a profile. Often, this will give you at least an alternative to the tweaked version.

-DonPetersen
 


More generally, in order to fully appreciate a profile it’s important to understand that a profile is taken from a real rig (a certain guitar through an amp and a cab) which the author found well-sounding. He or she set the guitar’s controls and PUs, and the amp’s tonestack in a certain way. Then they profiled the rig. Those settings will then depend on the player’s taste and the used instrument. Another key issue to keep in mind is that the players who profiled their amps for the factory profiles are all professionals, used to work in studio. Their sounds are recording-ready, that is mostly conceived for sounding good in a mix (of a certain genre) rather than for a solo performance. Last, but not least, an instrument which sounds good alone rarely sounds as good in a mix, and vice-versa.

These sounds were created to work within a mix and are typically not what guitarists want to hear when playing alone. Many people wouldn't like the sound. There have been a great many cases in which someone has secretly posted the actual tracks from famous recordings on forums and asked people to judge them and there is always tons of criticism about them sound thin/harsh/digital/etc.

-will_chen
 

In most cases you would be surprised how narrow bandwidth guitars have in the whole frequency spectrum of a professional recording. Keywords here are: lots of bass cut and focused mids, especially when there are more guitars going.

-DocLine6forum
 


Q: Why I like my own profiles best over all the stock profiles, which are supposedly been made by big pros?

Your profile of your sound has been expertly edited by the one person who knows exactly what amp sound you like for your personal guitar. If you like a "fuller" sounding profile than everyone else, it doesn't mean your profile is better. It also doesn't mean everyone else's profiles are better. Different people have different monitors, and EQ their profiles differently. If your guitar pickups are significantly hotter or weaker or brighter or darker than another profiler's guitar, you will get a different sound from a profile than the other person gets from the profile.

Some people design their profiles to be "mix ready", with all that pants flapping bass removed.

Some people design their profiles for live use with a huge amount of low end, because they like it. They know that the sound engineer is going to remove everything below 100 Hz from the guitar channel, to preserve the attack of the bass, and the click of the kick, anyway.

-paults
 


The above-mentioned elements explain why you might find a certain profile not to your taste: mostly, the reason is that you’re using a different combination of guitar+pickups, and/or listening to the sound solo rather than in a mix. So don’t be too fast in discarding a profile which doesn’t sound good at first: it might be a hidden pearl, especially if you use more than an instrument. On the other hand, often tweaking a bit a profile you don’t like can give excellent results. In the words of Eng. Kemper:

The factory profiles were made by more than a dozen professional teams of guitarists and producers. Those profiles were perfect for any of them, who made it, in quality and usability.

Quality means: the profiles were absolutely close to the original in every aspect, sound and feel. There is no single report from those who made profiles, that the Profiler introduces a signature sound to the profile, in a way that it reduces or emphasizes the low or high end, or modifies the feel in a certain direction. What you hear is what these teams wanted to profile. Some people have stated that some profiles do not clean out well enough. If that's the case, then you're hearing the shortcomings of the reference amp that has been used. We offer a decent parameter set to modify and augment the original sound of the amp.

Usability means: all the profiles were usable for those who made them. We have learned already that a profile of one man does not necessarily fit to the other. And many state that they don't like the factory sounds. I have received profiles from a friend of mine and I called him back, because I thought two profiles were broken, because I found them unplayable. He confirmed that those profiles are perfect, these were sounds that he's been playing since 15 years and now being happy to have them in the Profiler for using in on a national tour. No profile is a compromise to impress a majority. Indeed we believe in the diversity of user content. We never had the plan to create content on our own that fully reflects the variety possible. Our factory profiles were made by pro's, and often reflect their own signature sound. We have rarely pro's or endorsers that criticise our factory sounds. But they state some are harder to play and more ambitious to get a nice tone from. Please keep that in mind.

I have profiles from endorsers on my desk, that have been used on remarkable and known recordings. I have yet to decide if we will publish them, since they do not sound any special or superior without the context, and might disappoint a majority of users.

As with using other people's gear most of the profiles out there can be tweaked a bit to be usable. Definition and Clarity in the Amp section, Character in the Cab section and the Studio EQ in the X block (1400 Hz – 1800 Hz on the 2nd parametric band is a good place to start, try adding or subtracting just a little).

-ckemper
 


Feel free to experiment with different amps and profiles when you look for your tone.


I had a song written a few years back that has an arpeggio on electric. I was noodling tonight looking to add things to my favourites folder and just started playing that arpeggio. The thing is, amps tend to ring a bit too much and it sounds wrong, probably because I wrote it on the acoustic. But tonight I just happened to hit upon the 55 Gibson and it worked perfectly. It's an old amp that just dampens enough to allow you to hear the strings beautifully. It was mesmerizing. You sometimes don't realize the full potential of some of these amp profiles until you hit upon the right thing to play on them.

-db9091
 


The secret is in getting a great profile and there are a bunch of things to be paid attention to, like the actual return level, the level going into the Kemper, refining the profile the correct way etc. If done right, I cannot tell the profile from the original, if not done right, there will be a noticeable difference." (Source)

-Michael Wagener
 


One thing I really dig about the Kemper: many times you can take a crappy amp or pedal with so-so distortion and ridiculously high noise levels and when you're done profiling, you have something that sounds much better than the original... better/smoother overdrive and substantially less noise and hum. I have had this happen enough times that I have started profiling most of the equipment I own, because you can end up with some real gems from even lame beginnings...

-Radley
 


Amp cab or monitor/PA cab?

The Profiler (like all the high-end digital pre-amps) performs through an algorithm designed to take into account all the non-linearity of an amp+cab system that we guitarists happen to love so much. All you need is a medium to make the results reach your ears. Generally speaking, it would be a mistake to use a guitar cab, because it would give a double contribution to the sound (like drawing a subject through distorting lenses, and using the same distorting lenses to examine the drawing). The same applies to the poweramp you’re going to use wit you Profiler: it should be as linear as possible, in order to keep the simulation as faithful as possible. Having said this, several Profiler users have reported they like using a guitar amp and a guitar cab (which are non-linear by definition), and it’s always possible that you’ll like the results, so experiment at will! In these cases, you may want to disable the amp and or the cab from the Profiler panel. Find what best suits your tastes/needs.

Another good way to use the Profiler is with profiles taken w/o the cab (for example with a DI box). They are made to be used in conjunction with a guitar cab.

But a profile is much more than a simple snapshot of a rig! You can actually tweak the profile of an amp far beyond what you can do with the original amp. You can add or subtract gain, add definition, compression, power sagging, pick attack, tube shape, clarity, tube bias, and that's just on the Amp module. Then you can swap to a different cab, where you have high shift, low shift, character controls, a bass/mid/treble/presence EQ, then your effects including several different types of EQ that can be placed before or after the amp.[3]

To learn how users set up their Profiler-centred rigs you can read this thread.

Reference

  1. Will Chen @ TheGearPage
  2. randombastage @ TheGearPage
  3. stratotone @ Rig Talk