Battery Studio Drums
When we reviewed Native Instruments Battery in december 2001, I wrote
in the conclusion: "The libraries of drum kits in Battery, that
Native Instrument deliver, are of very good quality and "fat"
enough to keep you going for a long time. The total of 31 drum kits
under Battery give you enough stuff to cover most music styles. The
superb editing features will do the rest".
This conclusion still stands: out of the box, you can get along with
Battery for a long time. But at a certain moment, you most probably
want more: real -and I mean really real- drum sounds, like the pro's
have. Well: that wish is fullfilled. Native Instruments joined with
Yellow Tools, a recording studio in Karlsruhe, Germany. Aim of this
project: the production of two CD's, packed with over 3.000 drum samples
with absolute professional quality, ready for use in Battery.
The Yellow Tools Studio was packed with well known top drum gear, like
Pearl, Sonor, Tama, Yamaha, Sabian, Paiste, Meinl and Zildjian. Most
definitely not the rubbish of the drum world, right? On the microphone
side, good stuff was used too: Neumann, Shure, TLM, Schoeps. Recording
was done with ProTools. And sound editing was performed with sonicWORX
in this site). The use of Prosoniq stuff does not wonder me, as
this company is based in the same city as Yellow Tools ;-).
The result of this professional approach is absolutely fabulous (to
quote the British totally distorted comedian Joanna Lumley). The samples
sound perfectly crisp and clear, as if the real drum gear is parked
in my Mac. I must confess I am most certainly not a drummer, but a keyboard
player. But my ears are very OK, and I recognize quality when I hear
quality. These samples were done and edited by a good crew.
What's in it for you? You get two CD's, stuffed with the best drum gear
you can dream of. Small studio set, large studio set, chromatic snare
kits, stereo studio kits and large tom kits: it's all there. As the
booklet, that comes with the CD, explaines: "More than 3.000 individual
samples were recorded from a wide variety of collector-quality kits.
Six bass drums, ten snare drums, seven tom sets, four hi-hats and four
cymbal sets were all recorded at multiple velocity levels and playing
styles". This all usable in a wide variety of styles, from pop
to rock, jazz, soul, funk, dub, reggae, and more. Fully compatible with
and usable in Battery, the drum sample player of Native Instruments.
As you can read in our site goal statement, we normally test during
real time production. We had to do it differently this time, as we are
in the middle of a holiday season right now, and only have some audio
restauration projects running where sampled drumkits do not have value.
So I did some small test production work to test the two CD's, but that
does not deliver a project quality I would like to show in this website.
Instead, I downloaded two of the sample files NI presents at their website
to give you a good idea of the very high quality of the samples in Studio
Drums. I can assure you that, what you hear in these samples, is what
you get when you buy. I heard it with my own ears during the mini test
productions: these samples are of the best quality. Beware that you
need a lot of hard disk space to store all these samples in Battery's
folder: more than 1 GigaByte. By the way, in the same folders you will
find html files explaining the kit assignments. Very handy. I incorporated
these files in a local portal site I use to keep track of all the information
AudioMac.net causes coming into my mailboxes.
Sample 1: a pop song, edited and mastered:
stud_coll_popdemo.mp3 (267 KB)
Sample 2: the drum track of the pop song, with the drums sounds as they
come out of Battery, so not edited, not mastered:
stud_coll_popdrumsonly.mp3 (254 KB)
The conclusion on Studio Drums is short and clear: d...... good. The
samples are crisp and clear, sound very best, and are usable in a wide
range of digital studio projects. I know it looks suspicious when in
any online review the highest possible rating is given, but I give Studio
Drums a 10.
It is just that good, just as plain simple as that.
More detailed product info can be found at the web
site of Native Instruments.
All reviews in AudioMac.net are written by Peter J. Bloemendaal. All rights reserved.
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