How to improve drum machine sound

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deamanar
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How to improve drum machine sound

Postby deamanar » Mon Jun 24, 2019 1:18 pm

Heya LinuxMusicians! This is my very first thread on the website, I'll try to make it simple. I am not an utter newbie with home recording and recently I got into a new home recording/one man band project of mine.
I work with Ubuntu 18 and my plan is to merge guitar tracks recorded by using Audacity with the drum tracks sequenced with my Alesis SR-16 drum machine. It is widely known that the Alesis SR-16 is a very versatile and complete drum machine but the drum sounds are a bit of flat, especially when it comes about cymbals sound.
For my project I'd like to hear more realistic sound for the drum kit. Now, I have been thinking I could use the drum track prepared with the Alesis and transfer its MIDI file into my laptop and by using some magic trick I could make the MIDI drum track been read by a drum software (e.g. Hydrogen) which it has got a better sound library. In this way I should have the same drum track that was composed on the drum machine, now playing "better" as if it was an acoustic drum kit because its MIDI file has been "pimped up" by playing it with drum kits present on Hydrogen.
The MIDI file once edited, it should be converted in audio file too, I reckon but please tell me if I miss some bit.

I want to ask you if/how this dream of mine is realisable?
What MIDI software/sequencer/converter is best for me to use?
Any other drum sound library, apart from Hydrogen, that I should be aware of?

ps: before you can comment on, I tried composing drum tracks on Hydrogen but I could not figure out how to sync it with the audio track on Audacity and it's just driven me through weeks of frustration to the point that I rather prefer doing it on an external sequencer.

Positive suggestions will be highly appreciated

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milo
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Re: How to improve drum machine sound

Postby milo » Mon Jun 24, 2019 5:35 pm

If you can get the midi notes off of your device and into a midi track in a DAW like Ardour, Qtractor, etc, then a drum plugin like DrumGizmo or AVL Drumkits LV2 should work. You might have to play with the midi mapping a bit. Audacity won't cut it for this task.

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lilith
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Re: How to improve drum machine sound

Postby lilith » Mon Jun 24, 2019 5:42 pm

Why not analyzing the SR16 beats by ear and transfering it to e.g. Ardour? Then you will also learn how to make your own beats. I like the SR16. It doesn't sound like a real drumkit, but it has character. It was used a lot in EBM music and also Autechre uaed it (guess they used everything though ... ).

There are also books about drum machine programming.
https://soundcloud.com/lilith_93

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English Guy
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Re: How to improve drum machine sound

Postby English Guy » Tue Jun 25, 2019 11:09 am

The most realistic drums on Linux are Drumgizmo

deamanar
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Re: How to improve drum machine sound

Postby deamanar » Tue Jun 25, 2019 2:14 pm

Thanks for your suggestions, it nearly does make sense on all.
I think am going to give a try to one of the DAW that I've never tried before (Ardour, Qtractor) and a new drum plugin like ones you mentioned.
I am aware of the fact that Audacity cannot import MIDI files neither read it.
I thought that Hydrogen could do that job but apparently it cannot import MIDI files... is that through or I just couldn't find the right option to do so?

I am after some realistic drum sound, like metal-ish sound; do you know if DrumGizmo or AVL Drumkits LV2 could do the job?

Over the past few weeks I tried to export MIDI files from the SR-16 into Rosegarden through Qsynth (by using the Qjack sound driver), but I've never been able to actually transfer the file into Rosegarden. Why have I been so unlucky? I thought that a MIDI file was always a MIDI file..

t3rtius
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Re: How to improve drum machine sound

Postby t3rtius » Wed Jun 26, 2019 6:09 am

deamanar wrote:Thanks for your suggestions, it nearly does make sense on all.
I am after some realistic drum sound, like metal-ish sound; do you know if DrumGizmo or AVL Drumkits LV2 could do the job?


Yes. I'm a amateur rock/metal guitar player and although I've made EZDrummer, Superior Drummer 3 and Steven Slate Drums 4 & 5 to work under Linux (via linvst), I also get a lot from AVL and MT Power Drum Kit, which I also suggest you check out:

https://www.powerdrumkit.com/

The key, IMHO, is to route them to separate tracks and mix the drums individually, as Glen shows here:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iUSdXmlu8UQ

Same can be done (with LOTS of extra flexibility and MUCH more mics) with Drumgizmo kits.

Haven't tried Qtracktor, but Ardour and Mixbus are extremely easy (basically automatic) to setup for multiple outs from a drum plugin (see the YouTube link above).

chaot4
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Re: How to improve drum machine sound

Postby chaot4 » Mon Jul 01, 2019 4:38 pm

Last time I checked, Qtractor does not handle the outputs of DrumGizmo correctly as it does not support more than two outputs of a plugin, and DrumGizmo has 16 outputs. Also, the integration of AVL Drumkits with Ardour is awesome.

So, whichever you use, I suggest programming drums in Ardour.

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Linuxmusician01
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Re: How to improve drum machine sound

Postby Linuxmusician01 » Tue Jul 02, 2019 2:26 pm

chaot4 wrote:Last time I checked, Qtractor does not handle the outputs of DrumGizmo correctly as it does not support more than two outputs of a plugin, and DrumGizmo has 16 outputs. Also, the integration of AVL Drumkits with Ardour is awesome.

So, whichever you use, I suggest programming drums in Ardour.

Would it be possible to use Carla for the 2+ output VST and then route it to Qtractor somehow? Or doesn't Carla support VST's with more than 2 outputs either?

[edit] Downloaded 64 bit Drumgizmo, opened it in Carla (went fine), downloaded a small "drumkit file" that it needs (Sommerhack 2016 Kit, the other kit are about 2 to 5 GB!!!!!!!!). Loaded siad drumkit in Drumgizmo but I do not see more than 2 outputs of Carla.... The 32 bit version does not show up in Qtraqctor... Maybe I'm doing something wrong....?

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bluebell
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Re: How to improve drum machine sound

Postby bluebell » Tue Jul 02, 2019 3:14 pm

chaot4 wrote:Last time I checked, Qtractor does not handle the outputs of DrumGizmo correctly as it does not support more than two outputs of a plugin, and DrumGizmo has 16 outputs. Also, the integration of AVL Drumkits with Ardour is awesome.

So, whichever you use, I suggest programming drums in Ardour.


In Qtractor a track has as many outputs as the bus you connect it to. So connect it to a 16 channel bus.

Of course you can load Drumgizmo in a bus, too.
Linux – MOTU UltraLite AVB – Qtractor – https://soundcloud.com/suedwestlicht


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