Discussion in 'Bass' started by roirat, Jul 21, 2004.
What type of equipment are you using. Electronic instruments, samplers or ? Can you give us a brief description of what you're using now?
They use snyths, drum machines, real drums, samples, loops
First you have to choose your sequencing format; computer based, hardware based, keyboard or sampler workstation.
Computer based is the most expensive and the most versitile.
Hardware based is less expensive (but not by much) and as versitile as your pocketbook.
Keyboard or sampler workstations are very reasonable but limited.
Pick a format and then we can give you more advice.
I am currently using an SR-16 drum machine that I do not have synced thru midi to my cakewalk Home Studio. This means that the tempos don't quite match (between cakewalk's file and the sr-16). I understand that with a midi interface, I could make cakewalk "tell" the sr-16 exactly what the tempo is, and then the looping/groove functions in cakewalk would become useful (without the sync, I can't really use these at all).
For bass, I usually just fudge something out on my guitar that sounds like a higher-octave bassline (lame). I used to get barely passable results using a pitch shifter in previous software, but an octave is a long way to go....
I don't really have plans to buy a drum kit and a bass and learn to play them. My options so far as I know at this point:
Buy one midi-controlled external hardware synthesizer with all the sounds I need (and probably a buttload that I'll never use) and use it to create the bass and drum tracks I want.
Buy a keyboard midi controller and several more bass- and drum-specific software synthesizers.
I like homestudio so far, so I think I'd like to stick with it. I know so little about midi, though, that it's hard to even ask intelligent questions. So...
What I meant with my original question was, if you do anything like what it sounds like I'm trying to do, only better, how? Maybe I can learn from examples of your setups rather than "tell me what I need to buy."
Here's a linc to some mp3's from a long time ago when all I had was a little $10 PC mic and the soundcard that came with my presario. I was using Magix Music Maker (don't remember the exact name). This might give you some idea of what I'm trying to do (and why I want to upgrade).
What you can start doing is... first, learn some of the options within cakewalk. That means knowing how to setup your sync options and etc. Once this is accomplished, you can move on to learning and understanding the fundimentals of recording and using midi as a foundation to construct your songs. Get your hands on a inexpensive interface and we'll (the folks here @ R.O.) get you going with whatever info you'll need.
Okay, that sounds like good advice. One more question:
Do I need to worry about increased latency with a USB midi interface as opposed to one that connects to midi i/o of a PCI soundcard?
With midi, there's no measurable latency to worry about.
Pick up the Cycling '74 Pluggo plug-in pack. About 80 plug-ins and 20 virtual instruments. They tend to be CPU hogs, but for 99 bucks it has a lot of fun stuff and usable.
Get a Motu Fastlane or similar MIDI interface, about $75.00, and you'll be stylin'.
I use a Roland R5 - human composer it says! It's very easy to make the drums sound natural. Using a Fostex VF80, it's easy to synch to the Roland via midi. It has 6 seperate outputs which I mix on an Alesis 1622 together with the stereo mix from the VF80. Very simple, and totally guitar based.
thanks, bob. the pluggo sounds pretty cool, but it seems to have a lot of stuff i won't use. i think i'd prefer to get something a little more specific, although for the money, who knows, maybe it would be fun.
You mention the midi interface. I would also need a controller, no? Like a midi keyboard controller?
thruzero, i couldn't find the r-5 anywhere to look at specs, but it sounds similar to my sr-16. I'll probably keep the sr-16 for know, but I found this cool software called BFD that I might pickup at some point...
Get the Pluggo, it's amazing how much of it you'll use when you have it, and 20 virtual instruments is bangin' considering most VI's are $200-$300 a pop. Like I said, for $99.00 you can't go wrong.
There are lots of inexpensive controllers out there, you can even get a Yamaha or Casio "educational" keyboard that will give you a complete GM set and, depending on how much you spend, a lot more. Pick one up used from the kid down the block who got one for Christmas and never played it again after the New Year. I've set up dozens of people this way.
anyone else used pluggo?
roirat - The Roland R5 is 15 years or so old now: I found this review on my laptop:
This drum machine pretty much does it all. It should be considered as a Pro-unit. It's easy to use, but to really USE it, you've got to delve deep into the Paramters.
There are 5 Pad Banks (kits)for a total of 80 sounds accessible (out of 94 max). The Pads (keys)are preset but can be user defined. A Performance Bank is also available, which stretches the pitch a single sample across all 16 pads. This to can be user defined + or - 4 octaves in 10 cent increments.. 32 Preset Patterns (some are real good, most aren't.) 100 Programmable Patterns w/ 99 meas. max per pattern and up to 2600 notes total. Memory does run out quickly so it's a good idea to get rid of unwanted Patterns. clock is 1/96 ppq. 6 songs w/ max 999 measures per song. (use repeats and loops) but still there's almost always plenty of song memory left.
Feel Patches are about the coolest thing with the R-5. Roland calls this drum machine a "HUMAN RHYTHM COMPOSER" and for the most part it does. With feel you can create timing inaccuracies, nuance changes and stick placements. Add groove and swing, then randomize. Groove is super important for the High Hats.
Excellent Midi Implementation. Transmits each instrument separately on any channel you wish, or set all instruments to a global setting.
Another important necessity for "home studios" is that there are six 1/4" outs (one stereo pair and 4 individual). A must when you need a dry kick and a wet snare.
There are no built in effects, although some sounds were sampled with reverb.
The R-5 is mighty capable. Too bad it doesn't have as many sounds as the R-8, but it's still a great machine.
I recommend getting a compressor/limiter and a decent multi-fx. Most samples are as dry as bone.
The 16 pads are a little funky, but they respond well. But only if you hit the pads bottom center.
Buy one. You won't be disappointed unless you want hip/hop and rap samples--there aren't any.
Comments About the Sounds:
There's 68 of 'em. and 26 user defined instruments (Copy an existing sample and tweak it, then save it.) Has a decent copy of the TR-808 clap.
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