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Topic: choosing good drums

  1. #1

    choosing good drums

    I am looking at my choices for drum samples and would like your advice.

    Although I have been making music with and without computers for a long time, I have only recently started to use samples and softsynths. I tended to use whatever my soundcard provided and concentrate on the melody and the structure of the music. But my current goals include creating semi-professional mixed down sound. and as I read it that requires sampled instruments.

    The sound I am looking for ranges from Chet Atkins' Stay Tuned and Neck to Neck albums to Django & Stephane and early electric Dylan. (I also like Mozart and Bach but that's another story) I prefer to concentrate on the music rather than spend a lot of time tweaking the software or fixing it in the mix. I don't like destablizing copy protection methods like PACE or ones that don't let you back up your tools. I am also price sensitive. My system has 1 gigabyte of RAM and a P4 running at about 2 MegaHertz. I use Sonar 3 Producer Edition, primarily, with Virtual Sound Canvas and VSampler.

    Given these goals and my current situation these are my current plans: purchase the Bardstown guitars, the Garritan Personal Orchestra (which provides an acoustic bass and violins and for good measure a whole orchestra with which to experiment), and to inexpensively improve the quality of my drums. Someday I may add the Trilogy bass samples and Battery or BFD or Stylus or whatever. But this is my plan for now.

    So what can I get to inexpensively improve my (virtual) drums? Something that sits well in a mix (not so "rich sounding" that it turns the result into mud unless it is extensively tweaked and filtered).

    I have noticed that although it is not a currently hot product, a lot of people use DR-008. The latest version sells for $99 and includes I beleive 300 drum kits. What is the quality of these kits? If they were competitive with Battery or BFD I suppose the reviews would have mentioned the fact but how far away are they? And more to the point, how far are they from the GM drums in the VSC? I assume that they are somewhere in the middle but which end are they closer to? Would they keep me reasonably happy for awhile?

    The other alternative that has caught my eye is the drum CDs from Numerical Sounds, particularly the Purdie CD. VSampler reads AIF files and that would run $150 if my memory serves me well. What about that alternative?

    Or among the many possibliites out there is there something that I might like better?

    Thanks in advance for your good advice.

  2. #2

    Re: choosing good drums

    I don't own it but someone showed me this


    I wanted t say if you must stick with samples then Stylus + retroFunk and Backbeat will be gerat. But I think it's out of your price range .

  3. #3

    Re: choosing good drums

    Thanks Marty. I downloaded two of the mp3s and will be listening to them with interest.

  4. #4

    Re: choosing good drums

    Dunno if they're good enough for your application, nevertheless they are a good start into that topic, because they are free and can be imported into your vsampler:


  5. #5

    Re: choosing good drums

    Quote Originally Posted by Lee Blaske
    If the DKFH Superior plug-in out of your price range? It seems like you're looking for realism, and that product could get you there. The rendering process that add mic bleed really goes a long way toward creating a real sounding performance.

    Lee Blaske
    My thoughts too. It's still as cheap than buying, say, a used Alesis DM Pro module and the results are infinintely better. It's a better solution IMO than paying $200 for Battery and then still having to get kits (good ones) for it. I just can't think of (what I would consider) a good drum solution for less money than that.

  6. #6

    Re: choosing good drums

    Quote Originally Posted by FredProgGH
    My thoughts too. It's still as cheap than buying, say, a used Alesis DM Pro module and the results are infinintely better. It's a better solution IMO than paying $200 for Battery and then still having to get kits (good ones) for it. I just can't think of (what I would consider) a good drum solution for less money than that.
    I vote for Artist drums, really great Sounding !!! easy to work also

  7. #7

    Re: choosing good drums

    Thanks for all the good suggestions.

    I've been doing a little quick looking around regarding the various alternatives and of course I want them all. DKFHS is a bit more than I would prefer to spend at the moment and it sounds like it requires more tweaking than I would prefer but it also sounds like the results would make me happy and I don't want to be penny wise and pound foolish. Artist Drums also sounds like a good choice for being closer to what I have in mind in price and easier to use (good sounding with little or no tweaking required.)

    I am still in the process of looking into the other suggestions, but I wanted to thank everyone for taking the time to give me their excellent advice. Greatly appreciated.

  8. #8

    Re: choosing good drums

    I was in a similar position to your and I chose DKFH 2. Its $99 (it is basically one very large kit form DKFHS), but its a real ram hog. Ii do not know if its a great choice. There were some real bugs in the initial version, but most of the major bugs appear to have been fixed. That said, it might have some problems (including excessive ram demands).

    For original progressive electronic rock influenced by J.S. Bach and (old) Rush, check out: www.soundclick.com/jeffreynaness.

  9. #9

    Re: choosing good drums

    Thanks for the thoughts jeff. That's an interesting alternative.

    I'm a little concerned about what you say about the ram demands since I only have 1 gigabyte and 1 hard disk on my music system. As I understand it Sonar's audio handling would interfere with DFD so all the samples I use would have to be able to co-exist in ram (or I suppose I could compose with VSC GM and then sequentially load and record to audio any sample supported tracks and then mix them with any live tracks, workable but a bit cumbersome.)

    In any case, thanks for sharing your experiences with DKFH 2.

  10. #10

    Re: choosing good drums

    The nskit is very nice for a free kit, but if you plan to do something commercially with it, you'll need to obtain a license for the sounds from the creator. I think he's planning on releasing a commercial copy for around 50 bucks sometime soon.

    I went with Studio B (what was formerly the acoustic kit from LastLibs) and if the demos hold true, I am positive that it presents a solid investment as well. Maybe more details will be posted soon about what's happening with that library.

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