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JJ 10 Easy Wishes

Drum machine advice please!!!

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Basically, I want to have a kick, hihat and snare sound that I can play with live along with guitars/keys etc. I don't want it to sound like it's 'trying' to be a drum kit, just something basically that sounds like what old keyboards sound like. I bought a vintage yamaha keyboard but the snare is a high pitched note and it has no headphone output.

So are there any devices that can do just what I want them to, without having pointless banks of samples etc? I'm thinking even iphone apps might work

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Basically, I want to have a kick, hihat and snare sound that I can play with live along with guitars/keys etc. I don't want it to sound like it's 'trying' to be a drum kit, just something basically that sounds like what old keyboards sound like. I bought a vintage yamaha keyboard but the snare is a high pitched note and it has no headphone output.

So are there any devices that can do just what I want them to, without having pointless banks of samples etc? I'm thinking even iphone apps might work

You could use your computer and some sort of drum sequencing software... fruity loops etc. I'm sure for your needs there would be a freeware one good enough.

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Guest Tam o' Shantie

buy a cheap sampler, download a sample pack of virtually any of the classic drum machine packs for free. hey presto.

or if you must have an actual drum machine, i recommend a boss DR220A

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The Alesis SR16 is the best in my mind, its very simple, the sounds can be tuned etc. so if the sound isn't cutting it in the live mix, tuning them down a few notches usually helps (makes it heavier, which you really need with vocal PA's as they just sound way too thin on those live)...there are 4 outputs on it so you could have your kick and snare going to their own channel on the PA if you have the luxury at your disposal, EQing them into their own space would help the 2 cut across...I've did a load of gigs with drum machines and sometimes its awful if the drum machine just sounds like a noise and you can't clearly hear the transients of each drum..the programming is dead easy on the SR16, either real time or step programmable, it can be quantized, or off-beat...some other big advantages, you can stop and start it with a foot switch (great if you have an intro and don't want to deafen the place with a click track intro, NEVER use clicks live, use hi hat for timing) Building songs with the patterns is very easy aswell....I think it does time changes aswell...I can't remember if you can rotate through your songs with a foot pedal aswell (you can rotate through your patterns, add fills etc. with a pedal, but its best to have these programmed unless you're just jamming over one beat). Its fully MIDI compatible so you can drive a better sampler with it if you eventually get sick of the sound....and they are CHEAP...about 100 new or probably 50 ebay...it cost me 50 for a replacement adaptor for mine from R&B....but you can use the adaptor from your old NES or SNES fine enough with it (I did this on tour!)

I really like this drum machine...

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Was taking a look at new stuff from Roland and there is a new Octopad which could be really cool. Something you can bash is always going to be fun.

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