‘Old school’ in the digital age — one guitar, one Kemper ‘amp’, no pedals.
The audio examples here accompany my in-depth review of the Kemper Profiler Stage in SOS December 2019 issue. See: www.soundonsound.com/reviews/kemper-profiler-stage
We all know that today’s best digital guitar amps are almost infinitely tweakable to offer a great variety of tones and effects, and there’s plenty of great-sounding examples out there already that prove the point. But I found myself wondering how a Kemper might perform using just one profiled amp at one setting, and employing only the controls and pickup selector on the guitar for variation. I wasn’t looking radical here: just touch sensitivity under the fingers and tonal response at a range of different guitar settings, similar to a real tube amp.
The Kemper ‘amp’ I chose for this example is a Michael Britt profile of a 1956 Fender Pro amp — a classic early ‘tweed’ — that he partnered with a 3rd Power 1x12 speaker cab, rather than the single 15” that would have been in the original combo. I used a Tele, switching between neck and bridge pickups and rolling back volume or tone at various times, to give me a range from warm, jazzy clean to ‘pushed amp’ distortion.
The recording is DI'd from the main outputs, with all Rig settings left at their defaults, which means all EQs flat, Pure Cab off, no changes to cab Character, High or Low Shift. A Kemper Pure Booster module is employed, pushing the input with an additional 1.5dB — functionally no different to turning up the input gain by the same amount, but just more easily switched in and out.
Track © Dave Lockwood and www.jtcguitar.com