After playing my JCM800, I sold my Kemper

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

  1. giblesp

    giblesp Well-Known Member

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    People approach it like a modeler, and it isn't one. It has to be approached differently, and its a bit of gear that you can approach your own way.

    But I'll add, I fully understand why someone may try it out, look at the price tag and get a used Torpedo Reload instead.
     
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  2. lonewolfsx

    lonewolfsx Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, I didn't claim to know everything about it in detail and like I said, some of the profiles had some really fantastic tones. Like I said in an earlier post, I think the problem was more with the marketing team - the Kemper was never designed to replace a studio full of tube amps, but their marketing/copy writers wrote it as if it could essentially create digital duplicates of all your tube amps. It's not really set up for that, it's not emulating the circuit as a whole, only one specific setting of that circuit, which is why it's necessary to have multiple profiles of the same amp at different settings.

    I know you can change what position the EQ is in the chain, but setting the EQ to be part of the preamp does NOT work like your tube amp's tonestack. It's an approximation that can be applied to the majority of guitar amps. I'm not saying that it isn't useful, I'm just saying that it doesn't work like a real tube amp's tonestack. If it did, people wouldn't be creating multiple profiles of the same amps.

    Also, I only had it for a couple of days, but I'm a computer engineer, I don't need a year to figure out the interface or what its limitations are. At the same time, I've frequently said that even owning simple tube amps you really need to spend at least a couple of months with it to truly understand it and get the best out of it. I'm sure if I owned a Kemper I'd have refined some great tones over the years with all of the great features, profiles, effects and other techniques to make it sound better and better as I go, and I'd be very happy with it. I was only commenting that it's not going to create an identical replacement for a real tube amp, even if it subjectively sounds just as good, it's still different.
     
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  3. marshallmellowed

    marshallmellowed Well-Known Member

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    That's pretty much what a good modeler is, if you choose to use it that way. Run an Axe Fx through a tube power amp and guitar cab, and it's like a JMD:1 on steroids.
     
  4. Shane Stevenson

    Shane Stevenson Well-Known Member

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    I’m late to the party on this thread but to the OP, your opening statement was an interesting read for me and I can relate.

    I’m with “silent stage” band right now and my tube amps just don’t work out too well with this particular band. I have used the Kemper but I like the Headrush Pedalboard better. I now own and use the HR on a daily basis and it’s doing fine with this band.

    After having experience with good modelers and real amps I’ve concluded that real tube amps can never be replaced...even with the the technology of 2020-2021. Sure, modelers can get close I guess, but they just don’t feel completely right. There are folks here who can better articulate what I mean.

    Whenever I get the chance to open up my SV with a conventional blues or rock band I have a GREAT time!!!
     
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  5. anitoli

    anitoli Well-Known Member Gold Supporting Member

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    I am staying out of this Kemper/Tube debate. :D
    I just gonna read.
     
  6. solarburnDSL50

    solarburnDSL50 Well-Known Member Platinum Supporting Member

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    If a Kemper can do this with a phone recording I'm in. I don't want it manageable by 1&0's. I want to be the Fuck up...by my fingersz.

    Thor's Hammer. 2203 JMP

     
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2020
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  7. solarburnDSL50

    solarburnDSL50 Well-Known Member Platinum Supporting Member

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    Or if you're a boring player? Amp ain't gonna matter. Have fun. Shouldn't be this hard. I'm fine with One channel. Options are for after the set.:drool:

     
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2020
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  8. uselessoldman

    uselessoldman Member

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    I will second your choice/opinion and decision as I have both originals and IR/Simulators and I agree there not the same, not even close in truth. I bought some pro amplifiers, Crest Crown and QSC and I own a stack of cabs with all the main favs, V30s G12Ts G2Hs and no the IR does not really give you the same buzz, as for amp emulation, who needs all those amps? Like you, once you have the 800 u dont need anything else I also have the TSL and MG as I started on them and have upgraded as fund became available and I found what I wanted at the right price.

    What I found with IR as against the originals especially the Vintage 30s was detail, the IR was missing a lot of fine detail that was present in the speakers, that was what put me off digital.

    As for hiding all those cables? I use pipe insulation that stuff u use for insulating your central heating, works a dream and looks ok, certainly cleans up a rats nest
     
  9. giblesp

    giblesp Well-Known Member

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    If this were the Kemper forum, toys would be thrown out of prams about now.

    The grown ups are happy to appreciate both.
     
  10. Guitarpete

    Guitarpete New Member

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    Have to say that despite advancements in the digital world, a valve amp has the real mojo.
     
  11. malice95

    malice95 Active Member

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    Used tube amps in the beginning, went Kemper thinking that's the future and sold my tube amps. Sounded great but was missing something. Could never get a good in the room feel out of it. Plus I was always tweaking the thing. Way to many options for my brain. Sold it, went fully back to Tube. Never again. I have an HX Stomp for late night practice but I am 90% all British made tube amp now.
     
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  12. andyg_prs

    andyg_prs Member

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    Interesting as I owned a JVM years ago, I have a Kemper (up for trade) and an AX8....and an Engl Ironball with a pedalboard of other drives, a 2 x 12 but also a Torpedo CaptorX

    With my prog metal band the Kemper was great...I had just the right sound dialled in, could get it consistently at gigs / festivals. I have a really bad back so the lack of weight was good for me. I also enjoy the discipline of no guitar on stage until the monitors are turned on by FoH. The main thing here, particularly in a 2 guitar band where the sound guy doesn't know (or care) about your band/songs.....mic'ing a guitar cab is so hit and miss, digital makes it far easier to control your sound/volume. Even nudging a master volume on the amp, or volume pedal on the board with a tube amp, you can affect the tone....whereas with digital it's pretty much linear.

    I love the tone of tubes but not the weight of heads/cabs or inconsistency of mic'ing. I've not had a chance to use it in anger yet, but the idea of the CaptorX is to be able to use my Engl Ironball (lunchbox style amp) without a cab = less weight, no mic'ing issues.

    Under the influence of the other guitarist in a couple of my bands, who is pro level....and happens to use an AX8, and tends to use one patch, with a drive pedal on or off...and the volume knob and playing dynamics to get clean to thrash out of the same set up......I'm actually looking to trade the Kemper set up for one really nice amp....not sure what it might be yet! When it's plexi style, then you need a pedal for full metal....when it's metal, you need a switcher to put a plexi style pedal over the clean channel.

    I copied this quote as on my wish list would be a lunchbox version of the JVM....it's a truly astonishing amp in terms of flexibility.....

    I used to use a TSL122 for a reggae band and for me it had the best clean ever! However, it had that main board failure thing, had it repaired...it was still too noisy, even got it shipped to MK where the factory said it was working as intended...but it was way too noisy on clean to be used live....so it hit the dust.

    I'd love to try a SLO30....and a Suhr PT15IR......in fact Engl were supposed to release an IR version of the Ironball...but I cancelled my order after waiting for almost a year...

    Apologies for my many tangents :)

    Cheers,
    Andy
     
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  13. ShatteredVitreous

    ShatteredVitreous Well-Known Member

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    All

    I agree with all views as its a very personal thing. If it works for you fantastic, but if not move on. I don't think tube amps will ever be replaced, that doesn't mean the comparative sound isn't good, no different that Quorn Chicken, it's not chicken but it's good enough if you are veggie. With the amount of hex core CPUs available, the sheer amount of memory supported they can't make a VST that comes close, so I don't think anything else will until the code is written.

    Each has there place, when I was in an industrial band I used Guitar Rig from NI. I could do with that things an amp would never be able to achieve, but it suited the music as tone was not something that mattered (think NIN) . With the Kemper on a clean Fender with the delays, reverb and modulation avaliable I could do things that would cost thousands in pedals, those lush Pink Floyd/Radiohead sounds, but that kind of sound is not what I use for writing.

    Can't agree with the Kemper forum statement, they are a cracking bunch of people and are extremely helpful if you have RTFM.

    It's blossomed into an interesting thread this

    Miks
     
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  14. patrice

    patrice Member

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    Years ago I ditched my Axe Fx1. Now I have 7 Marshall heads...
     
  15. yafal

    yafal New Member

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    Hi ! Try a DSL. Worked every time for me.
     
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  16. Neptical

    Neptical Well-Known Member

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    I saved myself A LOT of time and money keeping my trusty ole POD Pro rackmount. STILL a fantastic sounding unit and easy to dial in. The old school way of using knobs instead of scrolling through menus is CAKE. I also had purchased the POD X3 Pro rackmount that I still own which does have a menu but still quite easy and sounds great.

    I still use both for recording through my AI and they still hold their own easily.

    They've always scratched that itch in sending me too far down the digital rabbit hole.
     
  17. Rumy73

    Rumy73 New Member

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    The lady doth protest too much . . .
     
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  18. ShatteredVitreous

    ShatteredVitreous Well-Known Member

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    Andy

    If you can go silent on stage, if it my band did when I was a guitar player the Kemper would be my first choice due to the sheer amount of routing options. You do need to take care of that back, completely agree.

    The Two Notes Live would be my purchase for live to get that consistent sound from the JCM. Then I can bring a cab or use the house one for monitoring. It does become a rabbit hole too as you then think, "well I need to attenuate the JCM, oh the Live doesn't do that, so I need the Reload as the Captor only takes it down by 20db. OK so not I need a Two Notes Reload for attenuation (heavy beast) and a Live to provide the cab emulation as the Reload doesn't do this" aahhh it all gets out of control.

    I think this is what lunchboxes come in really handy for. The ability to achieve a cranked sound without blowing peoples heads off lol.

    A lunchbox JVM would be on my absolute wish list. There is something I found funny. When I gigged my JVM I was always looking for something lighter and blamed the weight on the components supporting the complexity of the amp. I have picked up so many 100watt amps that have felt so light so I assumed the JCM would be light too..... No chance, thing is heavy. Made me respect the build of the JVM a lot more.

    I do want one more amp that's more modern though. The SJ is great but I find it used very little now. The JCM is just a beast but very classic sounding. I would like to compliment the JCM with a more modern voiced amp that's not the JVM........ Although it probably will end up being that amp.

    Cheers for the reply bud.
     
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  19. ShatteredVitreous

    ShatteredVitreous Well-Known Member

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    @Frodebro

    "what's real" is as subjective as the sound. Some people may miss the glow of the tubes, the look and feel you get from owning a tube amp, the connection you have to an amp which seems missing with digital gear, the purchasing of pedals rather than putting in a feature request and waiting 12 months for it to be implemented then updates for another year until it sounds decent by which point you have moved on in your musical requirements.

    Last night I built my first pedal board in 4 years, and I loved it. Its one of the reason I got into guitar, testing amps, buying pedals, reading gear reviews.

    Tone chasing is more fun when buying gear than scrolling endlessly through patches.
     
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  20. Rumy73

    Rumy73 New Member

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    Hey boss, your sentiments are meaningful and your experience with digital is shared by me and others, given the feedback here. I tried a bunch of stuff and ultimately simplified my studio and live setups. I have a SJ, fender deluxe reverb for cleans and a mesa triple crown. Basically, classic, clean and modern. I use two notes torpedo for silent recording but also still mic up stuff, as a toneseeker you know it depends. Given these limits, I am able to be more efficient in my own writing/recording or working with others. I try to think simplest path: which guitar les paul, tele, strat, etc.? Do a I want a pedal for color? Then the amp for the main tone.

    Players I record vibe with this flow better most of the time. On occasion, precovid, there have been guys wedded to their digital profiling rig. I say fine. I record it and use a radial twin cities to get a clean DI. Afterward, for example, I show the player a reamped sound of his strat going through a carbon copy into a cranked deluxe reverb or what have you. The response is generally: let's use that instead.

    For live gigs where many sounds are needed, I always thought a good pedalboard with a nice amp platform was modeling. Playing a bunch of covers, I liked what boss did with those ME-50, ME-80 multi sound units. They had knobs that could be turned on the fly at a gig. I contrast these tactile units with units that operate via menus. Sure the latter are fine in studio where one has time, but live it seems like a nightmare to tweak.

    But excuse all this spiel, I am pleased you are loving your jcm. That was one of my first amps. A real delight and more versatile than people realize. Make use of the low input with a single coil guitar for a nice, chimey vox-ish sound. Dip some of the mids out to taste. The high gain works great with overdrives and wah pedals. A very musical piece of gear.
     
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2020
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