After playing my JCM800, I sold my Kemper

Discussion in 'Marshall Amps' started by ShatteredVitreous, Dec 20, 2020.

  1. ShatteredVitreous

    ShatteredVitreous Well-Known Member

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    Well after 4 years of loving the Kemper and simultaneously being frustrated with the quality of the profiles on offer I finally sold it. I know we have some Kemper lovers on this board and I am certainly not mocking the product, its a fantastic digital device, but there were in the end too many things that annoyed me about it.

    My frustrations:

    Variation in profilers was drastic so if you wanted continuity between recorded tracks you needed to stay within a very small offerings from various profilers who all profiled the same (mixing Deadlight with Choptones was fine, MBritt with Top Jimi was fine but mix any of them up and its night and day in terms of application)

    Having to surgically eq every profile to remove the over hyped bass, fizz or with some profiles a flat and apparent lack of body, to only thin the sound out too much was frustrating.

    Stacking profiles just turned the results to mush.

    Rig Manager since the introduction of an editor became so unstable from one minute to the next you could not use it. Performance mode, which is what I used to organise my patches by song, just did not work since version 6.

    i took stock and decided to really question if I liked it enough to slow down my workflow. After realising I only used the JCM800 and AFD100 profiles I decided to try the real thing.

    Off I went and purchased a JCM800 2203x (£700), Two Notes Reload (£500), a Slash wah (£150) and a GTOD (£80) plus a Twin City (£80) so I could split my signal to the JCM800 and my SJ.

    A few things I noticed which was immediately apparent:

    The lack of options had a huge impact on workload. No longer was I scrolling through thousands of profiles to find what would fit.

    What sounded good out of the speaker sounded good in the mix. The overhyped profiles sounded amazing in isolation, to much fighting when recorded.

    No longer, beyond a simple low pass, did I need to surgically eq the guitars.

    Stacking guitars just made the sound huge and using the eq to make space for certain frequencies was quick and easy.

    Sound experimentation was zero. Want a different delay? well buy it and really think about if you want to spend the cash rather than scrolling for hours and never getting anything done because it is all freely avaliable.

    Its not all amazing.

    I now have a clutter of cables, the fizzy sound from the reload is annoying at times but its a much better work flow and.......well thats it. Tucked the cables under the rug, put my headphones on when writing and I am in tone heaven.

    I can honestly say at this point in time, and don't take my word for it, I am done with the digital world. With only the Axe left for me to try I really don't see the attraction in having so much choice whilst having very little time.

    Now I just need a modern voiced Marshall to compliment my JCM800 and SJ that is not a JVM.

    Boring story I know but I thought I would be nervous or reluctant on the day to sell, definitely not the case.

    You know whats better than convenience, the sound of a tube amp....don't compromise

    Mike
     
  2. FracStrat

    FracStrat Well-Known Member Gold Supporting Member

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  3. GregM

    GregM Well-Known Member

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    Viva le tube!
     
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  4. Australian

    Australian Green Beret Silver Supporting Member VIP Member

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    Nothing to be apologetic about. A JCM 800 will tear the balls off a Kemper on stage any day, but they are that good. But, So is the Kemper an outstanding piece of gear as a makeshift.
     
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  5. dro

    dro Well-Known Member

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    Welcome back to the land of the living. Reading your post, I see you referred to the Kemper as, "a fantastic digital device." And this may well be so. But the operative part of that phrase to me was. "Digital Device." Don't hate me for this. Because I get it. Throughout the major part of my gigging days. As I got older and weaker. Wanting lighter and easier load in's and out's. Digital became the norm. Spending more and more on devices as tech improved. And seeing how advanced digital is today. I can see the major benefit. Quick, easy, ease of home recording, low stage volume. The latter being somewhat subjective. But none the less. I get it. That doesn't mean I subscribe to it. When it all comes down. It is still a digital emulation. If that's good enough for you, great. But lets be honest. In a side by side comparison. And actual tube amp, w/ analogue effects is going to sound better.
     
  6. K2JLX

    K2JLX Well-Known Member Gold Supporting Member

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    Option paralysis is a real thing, I much prefer the single channel amps for that very reason. The 2203 surely rips (the paint off the walls).
     
  7. coolidge56

    coolidge56 Well-Known Member Double Platinum Supporting Member

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    Why I can't abide a Mesa and it's 1/1000th knob settings and 15 toggle switches.
     
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  8. JHMvP

    JHMvP New Member

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    Wow...really wow...

    I'm almost sorry to say that I'm happy that I don't have as critical hearing as you have.
    (Which sounds very weird, I know).

    At least you've made your clear choice; as long as you're happy, I am as well.
     
    Last edited: Dec 21, 2020
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  9. twangsta

    twangsta Active Member

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    True story man, been there done that. 4 years and an IO Error, got it repaired and sold it promptly.
     
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  10. DragonCrestPC

    DragonCrestPC Active Member

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    Ahh yes the JCM 800, one of the top 10 greatest amps ever made ( plexi being #1 in my opinion )
     
  11. scozz

    scozz Well-Known Member Gold Supporting Member

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    I could never get on with a amp modeler, I’d be spending so much time fiddling around that I wouldn’t be playing!

    I know myself,....

    “A man’s got to know his limitations”

    (anyone know or remember the quote?)
     
  12. solarburnDSL50

    solarburnDSL50 Well-Known Member Platinum Supporting Member

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    Clint Eastwood. Dirty Harry.
     
  13. Tiboy

    Tiboy Well-Known Member

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    I’m close to you OP. Close in that my Kemper has been sitting idle for close to a year as I’ve been playing Marshall VM, SV20 and Suhr PT15. For me it’s not about the sonic quality, but the option paralysis. I’m also suffering from selling paralysis. So for now the Kemper is just eye candy in the music room.
     
  14. scozz

    scozz Well-Known Member Gold Supporting Member

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    I knew you’d know it Solar!

    You win first prize buddy, a brand new Kemper profiler!

    Sorry op, I’ll shut up now. :D
     
  15. solarburnDSL50

    solarburnDSL50 Well-Known Member Platinum Supporting Member

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    Die'n ain't much of a liv'n, boy. Movie?
     
    Last edited: Dec 20, 2020
  16. solarburnDSL50

    solarburnDSL50 Well-Known Member Platinum Supporting Member

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    I luv's me some good ole Eastwood.:D
     
  17. scozz

    scozz Well-Known Member Gold Supporting Member

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    I can see Clint Eastwood saying it, but I can’t recall the movie! Damn!
     
  18. solarburnDSL50

    solarburnDSL50 Well-Known Member Platinum Supporting Member

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    Yeah op. Sorry for the derail. Not!

    Congratz on the real thang too!
     
  19. MarshallDog

    MarshallDog Well-Known Member Gold Supporting Member

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    Amen Bro!
     
  20. scozz

    scozz Well-Known Member Gold Supporting Member

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    Me too man, he was such a badass in the day!
     

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