In the first part of this article we went through some of the primary effects every user should be aware of inside of Addictive Drums. To review, these effects were the Sampler, Pitch, Volume, and Snare sections of the EDIT section. Read Knowing Your Effects in Addictive Drums Part 1.
As I’ve stated in Part 1, Addictive Drums is a power-house when it comes to the amount of mixing options that are available within it’s mixing engine. Don’t let the small interface deceive you.
What is Compression?
Compression is a tool that has two main uses – controlling levels, and dynamically shaping the volume of a signal over time. Within Addictive Drums there is a compression section that outlines four basic parameters for compression: Threshold, Attack, Release, and Ratio.
This parameter is the first part of the compressor that the signal hits (more…)
Compression can be used in many different formats but one of the most useful methods is for adding an aggressive sound to your Kick and Snare. A typical compressor’s settings involve Threshold, Attack, Ratio, and Release.
Threshold is a setting in decibels. Once it senses that audio surpasses the set decibel level it activates the compressor.
Attack is a measurement in milliseconds for how fast the compressor should begin compressing audio that exceeds the set threshold.
Ratio is the amount of gain reduction applied to the compressed signal.
Release tells the compressor how fast to stop compressing the signal once the threshold is no longer exceeded.
By setting the Attack and Release times relatively fast it allows for each drum’s initial hit to sound and then afterwards reduce the audio transient in gain. From our ears’ perspective, each hit sounds more aggressive.
Pictured above: The ProChannel in SONAR X2 Producer. Try it free!
SONAR X2′s AudioSnap engine and tempo analysis features give you unprecedented non-destructive rhythmic and tempo control over your audio. Employing sophisticated transient detection technology, the AudioSnap engine automatically analyzes all recorded and imported audio files for rhythmic content to determine where the beats are in the music. (more…)
The Step Sequencer is included in all versions of X2 and is fully integrated in to the SONAR X2 user interface design. Controls are easy to identify and use, and commands are easily accessible from dedicated drop down menus. (more…)
For your pleasure and edification the latest CakeTV Live webinar is now available for viewing on CakeTV. In this latest installment of CakeTV Live Brandon Ryan and I walk through the process of taking recorded, live drums from sounding, ‘meh’, to ‘larger than life’ using SONAR X1.
We explain everything from how to setup and organize a project to mixing, rout tracks to buses, fix timing with AudioSnap, setup and use parallel compression with the ProChannel, and much, much more.
Parallel compression is a mixing technique most commonly used on drums where one signal is split into two allowing them to be processed separately, or in parallel, and mixed together.
Typically a drum bus will be split into two drum buses where one drum bus will be compressed heavily and the other drum bus will be compressed lightly, if at all.
The reason for doing this is that heavy compression on drums can sound good but can also cause a major loss of transients and attack. Blending heavily and lightly compressed drum buses yields the best of both worlds.
You’ve got the song, the killer drum performance and everything is ready to mix but there’s one problem. Your kick drum sounds awful and there’s no option to re record the drum tracks. Don’t panic! Using SONAR’sAudioSnap 2.0 and the drum plugin of your choice, you can turn that dud into major thud!
There’s no doubt that SONAR X1 comes with a lot of great content, but one component that I think is sometimes overlooked is the Beatscape content. Beatscape originally came with SONAR 8 and it’s a great sampler machine for mixing and mashing up content. And now with the power of the Browser, Drag and Drop and the ProChannel, anyone who is looking to make creative drum beats that really stand out from the crowd can utilize all this content right at their fingertips in SONAR X1.
The Beatscape content is great for creating drum tracks from scratch, or embellishing existing drum tracks. Whether or not you have Beatscape installed does not affect the ability to utilize this content in X1. In fact I prefer to use the content in X1 without Beatscape at all. Here’s how easy it is to utilize the Beatscape content.
1.If you do not have Beatscape installed, copy all of the “Beatscape Factory Content” from your SONAR X1 install disc or from the file in your download purchase and place it somewhere on your hard drive.
*If you do have Beatscape installed, you will navigate to the Beatscape Content folder in the next step. Your Beatscape folder is usually in these locations depending on whether or not you are running a 64bit system:
If you are running a 32bit system of Windows:
“C:\Program Files\Cakewalk\Beatscape\Library\Beatscape Factory Content\” or you can search for the folder easily in Windows.
If you are running a 64bit system of Windows:
“C:\Program Files (x86)\Cakewalk\Beatscape\Library\Beatscape Factory Content\” or you can search for the folder easily in Windows.
2.In the SONAR X1 Browser, navigate to where the “Beatscape Factory Content” folder is and save that location by simply clicking the “save content location preset” button. You can also rename this location by double-clicking inside the text rectangle.
3.In the “Media” tab, make sure Auto Preview, Preview at Host Tempo and Loop Preview are all checked.
4.You can preview any loop by clicking on it. With the Beatscape content file system; the word “combo” is used in the files that have the complete loop. The great thing about this content is that for most loops, the parts are broken apart so you can use them all together for the complete “combo” loop, or you can pull in just single elements of the loops. When pulled in separately you can combine them with other loops or you can pull them all in and then layer them on separate tracks.
5.Experiment with different individual loops by simply dragging and dropping them into the track view and layering them on different tracks.
You can get quite creative with the Beatscape content, and it’s just another quick and simple way to get up and running fast on SONAR X1. Next week I will show some of my favorite tips and techniques to get unique sounds from the Beatscape content using the ProChannel and other effects.