Processing Drum Samples

Discussion in 'Working with Sound' started by MJ, Mar 31, 2018.

  1. MJ

    MJ Member

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    This may sound silly to alot of you, but I've been wondering if there's any techniques you could share in reguards to running samples through a specific chain before saving them so they sound 'together'. For instance, if I listen to say superior drummer 3 samples, or any onther drum library for that matter they sound cohesive, like they can and should be played together. My samples on the other hand sound very poor quality (Sample and bit rates not the issue). Perhaps you stick very subtle eq or some kind of pre in a chain before exporting? Any ideas or tips would be welcome.

    I produce everything from hip hop to orchestral music and I was wondering if you good people could help me to create some good sounding libraries for my personal use. Thank you all in advance!
     
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  3. No Avenger

    No Avenger Audiosexual

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    First, no matter how good you are at processing sounds, if the source is scrap, the result won't be good. Get yourself some good sources.

    Second, this can easily happen, if the samples are already treated to some extend and/or have completely different origin.

    Third, in SD3 and co the single kit pieces mostly really belong together, like toms and cyms among each other, or are choosen selectively by pros to fit together, like a specific bd, hh and cym kit.

    Fourth, they are recorded in the same room, with the same room and overhead mics.

    I don't know of any eq, or comressor trick to make completely different drum kit pieces sound as one kit, besides using the same room reverb for all as a send, or as an insert in the final subgroub.
    But I would suggest to get SD3, ADD2, or BFD3.
     
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  4. MJ

    MJ Member

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    Thanks for your input. I've just noticed with a lot of sample packs that I own (even the 'cheap' or free ones) there is a togetherness in the sound as if they've all gone through a similar signal chain.

    could you reccomend any professoinal sounding companies that specialise in drum samples? I am aware of the software libraries you mentioned, thanks again
     
  5. Baxter

    Baxter Audiosexual

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    When I process my own sounds (recorded, synthesized or a combination of both) I process them with all sorts of things individually. Filters, EQ, compressors, transient designers, saturation, limiters, exciters, etc. It ranges from gentle EQ to going nuts with granular synthesis. I don't really have a formula, but rather go by ear and with a flow. Sorry if I can't be more helpful.

    Edit: Oh, you mean real drums or Kontakt libraries? I fix phasing (flip and/or offset) and process each mic/channel with apropriate tools to optimize them, so that they fit together. I also use quite a bit of parallel processing to make it all gel.
     
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2018
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  6. Riot7

    Riot7 Producer

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    Pretty much what "No Avenger" said.

    Don't want to hijack the thread but I must say the Superior Drummer 3 kits are stunningly good. When you turn up the room mics (near and mid, you need the extra 50gb package to get them), the kits come to life like no other sample library I've ever heard. The Yamaha kit especially sounds like a million bucks.
     
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  7. No Avenger

    No Avenger Audiosexual

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    Besides the three I already mentioned, no.

    Of, course there is a bunch of pure electronic sounding drum machines, but at least ADD provides that, too (don't know about the others, but I think they do it, too) and maybe you're totally into a single drum kit piece from another company (for instance a ride from Slate Drums), but if none of these three libraries fills your need at all, well, that could be difficult.

    But if you're speaking of sample packs, I'm sorry, I can't help you with that. The times I used to use them are long gone. upload_2018-4-1_14-8-12.gif
     
  8. jynx

    jynx Producer

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    What kinda thing do you program??

    pehaps i can point you in the relevant direction...
     
  9. MJ

    MJ Member

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    Well the type of samplse I am looking to gather were modern hip hop drums, However I make all types if music from classical to synthwave.

    I'd like to make my own libraries but was looking for help in reguards to the processing to make them all sound together if that makes sense
     
  10. Von_Steyr

    Von_Steyr Guest

    Dont worry, these are the type of questions you ask in the beginning, its a lot more organic and natural once you learn the tools and develop an ear for the sound.
     
  11. junh1024

    junh1024 Platinum Record

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    Maybe a bit of light/gated reverb.
     
  12. bluerover

    bluerover Rock Star

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    Besides your subtle processing on the individual inserts - a group send with a bit of compression glue, proper panning of drum elements, a bit of stereo reverb, hit to tape plugin.

    The overhead stereo image and sense of a space is key. Try reamping through studio monitors, flat freq response speakers, PA, etc.. using stereo condenser pairs in any configuration, and layer that on top to taste. Might have to slightly adjust panning of original elements.

    If the Pet Shop Boys and Depeche Mode could do it in the 80s, then so can you. Produce until you find something tasty.

    And don't settle for using the cheap-o plug-ins on this one!

    But, a proper mic'ed real drum kit? --> Yes : SD, BFD, and other Kontakt inst. are the go-to in 2018 and is the closest you can get.

    Good luck!
     
  13. freefeet12

    freefeet12 Producer

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    Random drum samples from different sources/spaces likely aren't going to sound together till they're in some kind on context. I make my drum kits with a very specific sound for each one, that's what makes them sound like they belong together. I generally know what they're going to sound like, for the most part, before I put them together. Most of the time, it's because I've heard it before, mine or someone else, so it's my and or another take on it.

    Try something, copy a drum sound you like. For example, pick a Hip Hop song you like, and try to make that kit as best you can. Take notice of everything, depth, panning, ect. Find out what was used if possible. Choose something well know if needed. Even if you don't get all the way there, you'll start hear how they fit together because now you have context, the picture, if you like.

    Acoustic drums tend to get their "together" sound from being in the same space, Avenger covered that.

    In a way you answered your own question: "Perhaps you stick very subtle eq or some kind of pre in a chain before exporting?" < That's a means of getting you somewhere, where do you want to go? Think big picture, what do the drums sound like, in what context?

    Then again, there are no hard rules. Some music might benefit from a lack of cohesiveness somewhere. I certainly listen to some.

    Good luck.
     
  14. m9cao

    m9cao Producer

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    so your true question is founding a high quality sample libraries?
    a well produced music must not need that
     
  15. Sylenth.Will.Fall

    Sylenth.Will.Fall Audiosexual

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    If for example I was building a Hip Hop Kit from samples, I would look for a good dry 808 kick, and an 808 bass. Grab a good sounding snare and chippy hi/closed hat, electronic toms (tuned) and reverby clap. Next (and here is where I think you might be tripping up) Instead of just importing the samples to a kit and then trying to process them, I would grab a processed track that I wanted my kit to sound like and take each instrument, turn the volume up to as loud as you can get it without it distorting, then eq, compress and mono the kick, louden the other drums sounds too, and get them to try and fit along side the track, with eq etc.

    Only then would I add the finished sounds to my kit.

    Then you know the volume and processing is correct, and the drums are ready to play. THEN once I have the patterns for the song sorted out, I glue the whole kit with a glue compressor, then stick a limiter to max volume, and bring the entire volume down on the channel to compensate to about -10 to -12db.

    Then build the song from there.
     
  16. Spyfxmk2

    Spyfxmk2 Audiosexual

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    Hello @MJ :bow:
    It doesn't :wink:

    Have a look at Spectrasonics Rmx :bow:
    Also Native instruments Polyplex & Arturia spark 2 & the expansion packs.:wink:

    If you're looking for good samples pre /made, have a look at wave alchemy & sample magic for a start :bow:
    check also old elab,plus Raw cutz for hip hop/boom bap samples & some samplephonics :bow:

    if by together you mean to glue them....well use a ssl type compressor like the cytomic the glue
    use an emulation of the dbx 160 compressor as a send buss to add a punchy crisp sound to your drums
    use an emulation of 1176 as a send buss to bring out an element of your drums or to add an aggressive type of sound to all your drums.
    Saturation & vintage eq's can help in your chain : look at emulations of pultec & for saturation my favorite is Softube's saturation knob
    also on your master bus use a neve eq to taste before printing out your samples.:bow:

    if you're bored use the sausage fattener for fun.

    Then there is your own sound design :bow:

    many of my own drum samples drum sound design comes out of sylenth1 .....yes to everyone i said this they went like this : :woot:

    Enjoy your music & have fun ! :wink:
     
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  17. mercurysoto

    mercurysoto Audiosexual

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    While I agree with all the advice posted above, in truth, I believe that almost any drum kit or sample pack can sound great. The key is layering. Take for instance this screenshot from a mix by Warren Huart, who usually records drums in his home studio. This is a mix made by him and I guess I got the download as a freebie via mail subscription. You can hear the song here. While he claims to use no more than 8 tracks to record drums, his drum mix consists of 18 tracks. He adds a lot of samples, and these seem to come mostly from Addictive Drums (I could be wrong). Anyhow, he uses a lot samples to shape the tone of his drum sound.

    Screen Shot 2018-04-03 at 1.50.05 AM.png

    In the same vein, Graham Cochrane shares a nice trick to beef up drums. The problem with home-recorded drums is the lack of ambience, hence the small sounding results typical of small studio recordists (myself). This video sheds light on using a virtual instrument like Addictive Drums or EZ Drummer to supplement a room sound where there's none. Watching this video was a game changer for me:



    As for making one's own drum samples, I don't think the expense is worth it nowadays. Think of that's needed: a great room, a drum kit in mint condition, with new heads, professional grade mics (not Shure PGs), state of the art preamps, and high quality converters. Supposedly all sample makers go through this process and yet we complain that a lot of them suck, so what's the point?
     
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2018
  18. Moogerfooger

    Moogerfooger Platinum Record

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    All depends on the song man... You want Al Jackson Jr or do you want Metallica?
     
  19. MJ

    MJ Member

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    So much great advice from so many great people. I am taking into account EVERYTHING that has been said. For anyone else with input or opinions, I'd love to here from you (I'm sure everyone else would too).
     
  20. superliquidsunshine

    superliquidsunshine Audiosexual

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    I have an old friend named MJ, a great guy and a fantastic percussionist.

    My brother has thin eyebrows and smaller, closer set apart eyes than I do. My nose has a hook downwards and is much bigger than his aquiline profile, and my jawline is much, much more pronounced than his. However, when we are together there is no doubt that we are brothers. To glue your drum sounds together in order to imply a familial relationship they must all have something in common, many times more than just one thing. It can be a combination of things...a send to the same reverb, bussing them to a colorful compressor and/or adding distortion or saturation, anything to imply the same lineage. Mix and match, experiment and enjoy happy mistakes.
    [​IMG]
     
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  21. No Avenger

    No Avenger Audiosexual

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    Is that you and MJ on the left side? lachend animiert gmx.gif
     
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