MT Power DrumKit 2 questions

uncle sixer

New member
I am just getting my home digital studio up and running with REAPER on a laptop. I have started using MT Power DrumKit 2 to get moving on some drum parts. It is working pretty well so far. I like that I can use the rhythm/fill library to start building things... then I can go into the MIDI track in reaper and tweak the parts (open/close hi hat, change kick drum pattern, etc).

For one song I am doing, I separated the cymbals, hihat, and toms to one track, bass to another track, and snare to a third track. Then I EQed each track a little as if they were from a mic-ed drum set (using reaper eq presets, actually). I also humanized the cymbals and toms about 10% and the bass and snare 5%. Overall, the drum tracks sound pretty good for a first try. I was wondering if anyone else separates the different drums from a (MIDI) groove? I figured if I add reverb I would want them separated.

Anything else I can do for getting a good, realistic sound out of free software? Is this overkill? I have heard that the drum samples are already about as good as possible (with no added effects) and I have been told that they are a starting point and meant to be manipulated/processed.

Am I going to end up buying EZ Drummer anyway? How much better is that? Is it harder to use?

Thanks for any advice.
 

VomitHatSteve

Hat STYLE. Not contents.
I have both MT and EZD. They're pretty similar in terms of interface. The one big advantage of EZD is the expansion kits; you can easily replace the entire drum kit.

I separate every channel that they'll let me and mix them separately in the DAW. The defaults do usually sound good, but they don't necessarily sound like my mixes should. The one downside to this strategy is that I have to maintain a bunch of different track templates for each kit because when you load up a new instance of MT or EZD (or switch kits in EZD) it reverts to a default stereo mix.
 

TalismanRich

Well-known member
I've never tried to split up the channels of MTPDK. A while back I started to try remapping MT to trigger my SR18 to give me multiple drum kits, but MT has a lot more channels than the SR, so it was triggering bass notes and other junk. I need to minimize the MT kit, but that all got pushed aside.
 

uncle sixer

New member
OK, I am going to keep doing what I am doing until I reach diminishing returns.... the basic drum sounds are great while I am laying down other tracks, then I can separate them if/when it seems worth it.


Thanks
 

spantini

COO of me, inc.
Along the lines of what you're doing.. I have the original (full) drum track on Track 1 - it needs beefing up. I add empty Track 2. I find a groove I can work with, add it into Track 2 below where it needs to replace Track 1's section. Then I Return to Start and Play.. when it gets to Track 2's new groove, I Mute-UnMute Track 1 to see if they line up - if not, I adjust Track 2 to fit. Then I move the cursor to Track 2's groove and split Track 1's start and end to match (may need to Zoom in), then turn Track 1's split section's Volume down to 0dB so Track 2 will fill in on Playback.

Currently, I have a full drum track on Track 1, various (different) tom-cymbal fills on Track 2, then more (different) cymbals on Track 3. I'm going to add Snares on Track 4 and play around with that for awhile.

When I get it all worked out, I'll cut all the splits from the original drums on Track 1 and merge all tracks into one. Leaving the splits in will allow for EQing each section separately.

Sounds like a lot of work but it goes pretty fast. What takes the longest is finding the right groove to insert.
 
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