Line 6 Helix VS Kemper Profiler (Comparison)
Our pick: The Line 6 Helix and Helix LT
The Kemper Profiler has a tougher learning curve and is more expensive than both the Helix and the Helix LT. While it's capabilities are impressive, it doesn't really do enough to make us recommend it over the Helix, at least not for a higher price tag.
The Line 6 Helix and Kemper Profiler are two of the best-selling multi-effects pedals on the market today. They're also some of the most expensive, retailing at $1500 and $1700 respectively. Yet, they are somewhat similar in terms of their functionality. They both provide amp modeling, effects, and presets. The "profiles" in the Kemper Profiler are kind of like a different word for preset, and both units have plenty of presets.
But which one is right for you?
Is one better than the other?
Up front, it's hard to make a call in a direct comparison because both units are so stacked with features and similar. While Kemper is a little more cryptic and less straightforward about how many amp models and effects it has, there's little doubt that is provides you with a ton of sounds to work with.
So how do you make a decision between the two?
We'll do our best to help you out and make an informed recommendation.
Line 6 Helix VS Kemper Profiler Simple Comparison Table
First, you can use our product comparison tool and specs table below to get a feel for where the two units differ. You can use the Sweetwater buttons to access product descriptions and shop, which also help support our site and work at no extra cost to you. If you like these comparison pages, consider helping us out by shopping for gear via these buttons.
Line 6 Helix
Side-by-Side Specs Comparison
Kemper sets their effects and amp models up a bit differently, which makes it trickier to give you a raw count of amp models and effects. While we can identify about 80 effects in the Kemper, the number of amp models and base tones - via onboard presets and cloud sound banks - is seemingly endless.
The Kemper uses profiles to tweak these sounds and change or add effects to different amp models.
1024 (8 setlists with 32 banks x 4 presets)
Up to 999 profiles
Number of effects
Distortion, Delay, Reverb, Modulation, Pitch shift, Synth filter, Compressor/Limiter, Wah
Gain, Modulation, Ambience, Wah, Volume, Pitch
Over 100 Amp, Cab and Mic Models (latest firmware)
Total not specified but amp models are preloaded plus cloud models
1 x XLR (mic), 1 x 1/4" (guitar), 1 x 1/4" (aux), 4 x 1/4" (return)
1 x 1/4" (instrument), 1 x 1/4" (return/profiling), 3 x 1/4" (return)
2 x XLR, 2 x 1/4", 4 x 1/4" (Send)
2 x 1/4" (main), 2 x 1/4" (monitor), 2 x XLR (main), 2 x 1/4" (send 1/2)
Line 6 Helix Details
Line 6 gives you a raw count of effects and amp models for the Helix, which is helpful for a simple comparison. But overall there just aren't a lot of differences between the two units.
The Helix uses sound banks and presets, which can be customized the same way you customize a "profile" on the Kemper.
It's also fair to point out that the Helix is $200 cheaper than the Kemper Profile, which doesn't even consider the price of the Helix LT, which we like better than the regular Helix.
The Helix LT retails at $1000 - an astounding $700 discount off the Kemper Profiler.
Here's our comparison of the Helix and Helix LT.
We should also mention that the front panel controls and the overall learning curve on the Helix is a lot simpler than the Kemper Profiler.
Kemper Profiler Stage Details
Yes, the Kemper Profiler can do everything the Line 6 Helix can do (perhaps more if you include the cloud-based amp models). But does it justify the added $200 expense, or even the $700 expense over the Helix LT?
The Profiler is also just a lot harder to use, with a dramatically more complex front panel that takes some getting used to.
We don't mean to diminish what the Kemper Profiler provides. It's a great multi-effects pedal and one of the most complete and functional available on the market today. But it runs into the same problem that many other effects pedals seem to run into when competing against the Helix: It just doesn't do enough to beat it.
Add to that the control learning curve and the added expense of the Kemper, and we'll stick to the Line 6 Helix and the Helix LT.
Summary and Recommendation
It's also fair to say that the decision between the Line 6 Helix and Kemper Profiler could come down to something as simple as brand preference.
For us, Line 6 is a well-known commodity while the Helix series is well-proven and reliable.
We like that better than the Kemper system, which is more complex, and more expensive. If Kemper were to drop the price, we might be more willing to switch our choice, because the profiles are a great concept that give you a lot of flexibility. But for the foreseeable future, we'll stick with the Helix and the Helix LT.
Particularly the Helix LT - at $1000 - is really tough to beat.
Questions, Comments, and Experience
Do you have questions about the Line 6 Helix, the Helix LT, or the Kemper Profiler?
Maybe you've owned one of them and want to share your experience?
Either way, drop us a line in the comments section below and we'll check it out.