Sequenced Drums

Discussion in 'Drums' started by Flavy, Oct 27, 2005.

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  1. Flavy

    Flavy Guest

    Hey all ... i dont have a lot of money or a studio setup but i do enjoy makin music .. anyway ... i dont have any live drum recording setup so i rely on sequenced drums .. which i do .. using fruity loops & some acoustic samples ... my question is .. how do i make the sequenced drums sound real?? i mean yea they're not real so cant happen .. but how do i get as close as possible .. how do i mix them in such a way?? .. & if someone would be kind enough to just take a couple mins & treat this drum track i did .. just for fun .. so i can see what they would sound like .. AFTER they've been EQ'd or whatever needs to be done ... I just recorded this yesterday .. just the first verse & the chorus for Sugarcult's Memory ... thanks ... appreciate it ....

    the DRUM track

    Drum Track

    the whole song mixed & stuff

  2. IIRs

    IIRs Well-Known Member

    Oct 23, 2005
    I think you need to work on the dynamics of the MIDI parts mostly, as its too robotic to feel like a real drummer at the moment. Eg: the first pattern, KICK KICK SNARE would sound more natural with the downbeat accented ie: KICK kick SNARE. Also, try adding some velocity sensitive low-pass filtering so that softer hits are less bright than hard ones..

    Subtle timing shifts can also help: try pushing all your snares a few ticks ahead of the beat in some sections to add a sense of urgency, and a few ticks behind in others for a more relaxed groove.

    As far as the mix goes, I would suggest you pan your sounds closer to the centre to create a more believable drum kit image, and try using upward expansion instead of conventional compression as real drummers have much more dynamic range than most MIDI parts..
  3. Kuzan

    Kuzan Guest

    Also try and get a good sounding drum program like Groove Agent or Stylus. These all use real drum samples.

    On the stereo bus try combinations of compression, reverb and EQ. Try boosting the bass and the presence about 3 dB or so.

    You could split the midi track and record all the separate parts as wave files which would give you better manipulation of each part.

    There are no rules. It's all about what the song needs and how it sounds in the mix.
  4. Sanity Inn

    Sanity Inn Guest

    Here's a link that should help you " build ' some drum midi tracks...

    if you also use the advice from other post about velocity change and timing you should be able to get a decent track,,

    as for sounds, it'll come down to the type on patches you have access to ..


  5. Flavy

    Flavy Guest

    Thanks so much for the replies :) :) ... but i just wanted to let you guys konw .. these arent midi .... i used real drum samples ... i will work on the EQ-ing & stuff :) ... thanks a bunch again!!!!
  6. MadTiger3000

    MadTiger3000 Active Member

    Nov 16, 2004
    Also, a variation of an old trick when using presets on a drum machine:

    Take the pattern and copy it to a user program.

    Delete the snare and kick drum. Record this left and right panned. These are your "overheads."

    Copy it again. I know, it's cumbersome. This time keep only the bass drum. Record it to a channel. Do the same for the snare part.

    Mixing these to your liking gives you a little more realistic sound. Coupled with the above suggestions on how to make parts sound realistic, you can record some pretty convincing drum parts.
  7. R_Spaulding

    R_Spaulding Guest

    Do you import those real acoustic samples into fruityloops so you can use the Fruity loops user interface for creating the drum tracks? If so, man, I'd like to talk. cause I dont have an midi controller of any kind to play the sounds, thats why i like the way you make the sounds in fruityloops... with the timeline where you can turn the sound on at any spot and all.
  8. Flavy

    Flavy Guest

    hey .. yes .. i use acoustic samples ... & i load them into fruity loops...& i personally like that software alot cuz the interface (for what i do) is very user friendly...
  9. maintiger

    maintiger Well-Known Member

    Dec 3, 2003
    Whittier, California, USA
    if you record the midi drum track into your daw you can use the split notes function to separate your instruments- you ususlly find kick at b0 or C1, snare at D1 and so on- when you got them all to separate tracks then mix to taste like a real drum set.

    the main reason that drum machines don't sound real is that you don't have the minute variations in tempo that a real drummer imparts. daws usually have a 'humanizing' function and that helps some. (though usually not enough)

    another problem why drums don't sound great even when you use a real drummer is that to get your drums to sound great you need a great drummer. A great drummer does pushes in the right spots and generally give that extra dimention to the track that a so so drummer will never achieve (he has no idea, really)

    So there you have it, to get great drum tracks you need a great drummer plus a good recording set up. drum machines and sequenced drums are great for demos but they are not the real thing. they do not have enough soul. They are great to show the song but for a great performance you need a great real drummer. :D
  10. R_Spaulding

    R_Spaulding Guest

    How are you inporting the acoustic drum samples into FL? I cant seem to get it to work :(
  11. Something about that drum track download doesn't work for me. Can someone give me a hand? I can even provide an email address if someone would like to mail it to me. I'm very interested in hearing it.

  12. Flavy

    Flavy Guest

    hey shotgun ... i can email u the drum track ... give me ur email address ....

    R_Spaulding ... u can load any .wav files in fruity loops .. just copy them into any workin directory inside FL ...

  13. shotgun1a AT hotmail DOT com
  14. R_Spaulding

    R_Spaulding Guest

    Hey guys, i figured it out. And I completed a nice little "test" drum track, check it out:

    click here!
  15. Mr-Nice

    Mr-Nice Guest


    The drums sounded too perfectly on time which is what would make me think it was done by a sequencer. You have to add swing to the pattern and by adding that would take away that robotic/mechanical feel, and would make the drums sound a bit more realistic.


    I couldnt open those files for some reason and I tried 2 different media apps too. Both Windows Media Player and Real Player claim the right codecs arent installed. I will try to open it in cubase and/or samplitude, maybe they'll be able to play it back.

    In the meantime what app did you use to encode those MP3's?

    You will never get drums to sound good (or real) using cheesy sounds, unless you know what you are doing. And the stock FL sounds from what I hear are pretty cheesy. Try to get a hold of some good quaility drum kits and you will notice a difference.
  16. R_Spaulding

    R_Spaulding Guest

    When I add enough swing to the point that you can even hear a difference, the drums honestly just start to sound sloppy. If you go and listen to a handful of songs, keeping "perfect timing" in mind, you'll notice that that a lot of songs are recorded pretty darn close to perfect timing. And I think once the other instruments and vocals are done and mixed, it would be so hard to tell that I bet any average listener wouldn't even guess that it was sequenced drums.
  17. Mr-Nice

    Mr-Nice Guest

    You are probably adding swing to the whole thing. Try adding it to the high-hats only in certain parts. Dont use it on kicks unless you need some swing in certain parts as well.

    Dont just highlght all the MIDI parts for the drums and then add swing , that is what is most likely making it sound sloppy. Only add subtle amounts of swing to certain areas.
  18. Roswell-CS

    Roswell-CS Guest

    I had another question about sequenced drums...

    Any secrets to giving sequenced drums that "ambience" you'd get from recording live drums?
  19. Mr-Nice

    Mr-Nice Guest

    Try adding a slight amount of reverb to the kick and/or snare drum. Also panning properly would bring out that real live drum ambience.

    Make subtle additions and/or changes dont add reverb to the overall drum tracks. And dont use processing because you happen to have them, use them because the track needs it. Good Luck!
  20. christian231

    christian231 Guest

    Reading this makes me so happy that I use BFD. I struggled a lot with trying to get decent drum sounds from my crappy sr-16 and other Boss rhythm machines, for a long time. Those of you who have or used BFD know how good it is. It's a little on the pricey side, but as far as I'm concerned, it's the closest you'll get to a real drummer. I don't work for Fxpansion. :D
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