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So, convince me to sell my Kemper...

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Power User
It is a piece of gear you will replace the moment the IV comes out, let's not pretend it is winning the Powerball.

I think it was obvious I was exaggerating to illustrate my opinion of the III.

My current phone is an iPhone 6. Now, since first purchasing it, I'm really wanting to upgrade -primarily for the camera upgrades.

Why? Because the difference between the camera's on the 6 & the 11 Pro are..... wait for it..... life changing. ;)


Fractal Fanatic
I think it was obvious I was exaggerating to illustrate my opinion of the III.

My current phone is an iPhone 6. Now, since first purchasing it, I'm really wanting to upgrade -primarily for the camera upgrades.

Why? Because the difference between the camera's on the 6 & the 11 Pro are..... wait for it..... life changing. ;)

They really aren't. We just did that exact upgrade because of the battery dying constantly from my wife overcharging hers. :rolleyes:


Years ago you could reasonably make the case that the Kemper "sounded better" but at this point, the quality difference is so minute as to be irrelevant. In fact, logic would dictate that FAS's modeling will eventually surpass the KPA (or has), given that one is improving and the other is "complete".

That said, if you take the modeling vs profiling quality off the table... the FAS ecosystem is vastly more flexible. And I'm a big Kemper fan.


I have both and they both sound great. No need for me to choose. I just use what feels right at the time. When I am playing live I chose one or the other and go from there. I have a backup either way if something breaks.


I feel like this is something that people don't usually talk about, but for me, a huge benefit of the Axe-FX vs. the Kemper is that I have LEARNED a ton from using the Axe-FX. When I had a Kemper, I basically just bought a bunch of profiles from places like TheAmpFactory and wherever else, and just auditioned patch after patch with different guitars to try to find something I liked. Some great sounds, for sure, but I didn't really have a great understanding of why certain amps sounded certain ways, etc...

When I got an AX8, I realized how little I knew about amps and guitar tone overall, and using Fractal products helped me understand more about my preference for certain families of amps, certain speaker types, and so on, forcing me to get better both at dialing in amps (and I'm somebody who doesn't really tweak anything beyond the "authentic" page on the amp block) and playing in ways that coaxes the sound I'm aiming for from the guitar itself.

If you're a person who has had access to all kinds of amps and speakers or whatever, maybe this is less valuable to you because you already know everything, but for me, it's been a hugely valuable learning tool.


I’m about 98% on board...but the FM3 being so close makes me wonder if i should wait. Im on the waiting list - but will it still take months even when it comes out? I’m not going to keep the Kemper, though...overkill.


Buy the III. You’ll love it, love it, love it.
Keep the Kemper. If in a pinch, it’s a good backup system.
Keep some of your tube amps. (Nothing does amp-in-the-room quite like an amp in the room.)


I had a Kemper, then got an Axe FX III (on FW 1.18 back then). What immediately swayed me was the usability (editor with a great GUI, USB connection) , the effect options and the IR swapping. A few firmwares later it was clear to me that soundwise the Axe FX III had surpassed the Kemper by far. I, too, felt that most amps on the toaster sounded same-ish and also noticed a somewhat compressed midrange. The eternal profile-hunting was not to my liking either.

As has already been said in this thread: The Axe FX III makes you understand much better how to arrive at your dream tone and tailor it. Once you've gone up the learning curve a bit, creating a useful patch is a matter of minutes. The latest firmwares have improved the sound considerably.

One of the main aspects, though, is the live service. This means substantial updates in short succession and quick bug fixes. On the Kemper, they received the delay and reverb updates but haven't even got an editor yet. On the Axe FX III we've had drive block, amp block, cab block, power amp modelling and now speaker impedance updates (and much more, of course). I remember that it must have been around FW 5.0 or FW 6.0 that for me the Axe FX III really came into its own and when palm mutes etc. reached a level of authenticity that I hadn't been able to find in any other modeller.

I like to be at the forefront of technology and look ahead instead of being content and complacent about a piece of technology that is unarguably good and had its prime but now shows its age.


Axe FX makes the difference with routing, flexibility and FX. (if we may consider that kemper is as able as axe FX to simulate amps )
If you are only using a guitar straight into an amp, the question remains open ?

Keep if possible your kemper and purchase an axe fX.

Karl Houseknecht

Power User
(if we may consider that kemper is as able as axe FX to simulate amps )

I'll counter this assertion. It's a big "if". You hear lots of people assert that the Kemper has the "best" amp simulation, but I largely believe this is Internet group think. It's based on the comparisons between the real and profiled amp sounds, and while that has some merit, it's a shallow EQ trick. The Kemper is inadequate in capturing power amp distortion. To me, everything sounds like pure preamp gain in that unit.


Sorry, it is not what i wanted to explain.
Kemper is known for profiling.
If our friend has already profiles he loves, why not to stay with the kemper ?. I suppose that kemper can mimic pretty well real amps if profile is well done.
I just was trying to explain that in my opinion (and i don't own a kemper myself), the axe FX is of course well known for amp modeling, but ALSO for fantastic FX and routing capacities (+ axe edit).
It is a fantastic all in one machine.

As far as i know, FX from kemper don't have the same reputation.

Just for that reason, I think he should purchase an axe FX , but personally I will keep the kemper too.

I hope it is clearer like that. 🍻


I'm Fractal user since 2012... I bought a Kemper Stage last summer as a backup for my AxeFX3... the guitar tone comin' out of the Kemper is good but I think the Kemper is really a toy compared to the AxeFX. FX are not very great and not as tweakable as the AxeFX.

It's a great backup nevertheless.

My 2 cents


Power User
Been thinking about this some more. I believe the dichotomy is similar to what you have in the keyboard world:

The Kemper is a sampler. It takes a (very usable) snapshot of an amp, but there necessarily are constraints on what you can do with that snapshot. It also imparts some distinct, though not unpleasant characteristics of its own when it plays back the snapshot. Its editing and effects workflow is designed to be quick and simple--it has to be, since there's no computer editor. The simplicity is both a strength and a weakness since it adds further annoying limitations. In spite of its age, the Kemper still has a viable niche to fill.

The AxeFx III is a physical modeler. With the increases in CPU and Cliff's phenomenal coding, the AxeFx III's amp models have far surpassed what can be accomplished via a sampling approach. By design, there are very few limits are placed on what you can do with the unit in all respects, which is both daunting and very fulfilling. I can't think of a single situation where I've wanted to do something with the AxeFx III and discovered that it wasn't possible. ( ...and chances are that if I did, that feature would find it's way into a firmware update eventually.)

Kemper = quick but limited, adds coloration, generally good enough.
AxeFx III = unlimited, pristine, the best and still improving.
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