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Advanced Drum Production

Lesson 13 of 52

EZDrummer vs Superior Drummer

 

Advanced Drum Production

Lesson 13 of 52

EZDrummer vs Superior Drummer

 

Lesson Info

EZDrummer vs Superior Drummer

All right, let's talk about some tune track drum libraries. There's a lot of them, and, ah, I actually will be talking about the ones that I use the most because those were the ones I'm familiar with. I'm honestly not familiar with all of them. I just loaded rock solid, which is an easy X that Randy stop made of. You guys don't know who Randy Stop is. You should learn because he's great. Um, Lot made the most recent Alice in Chains Records, Metallica, Black Album, just all kinds of amazing stuff over the years. I know a lot of you guys might not be Nickelback fans, but the record sound unbelievably amazing from a production standpoint. And that is him. So pretty amazing that to attract could get him to make some drums for them. Um, I'd be happy this. So anyways, this is rock solid, and since this is an easy X is already pre processed for you is even here. Those are not raw drums. One thing I failed to mention before is that right here, this little arrow on the drums. You can choose dif...

ferent drums from the same drum session, so let's say I want a different snare loaded that scratch or Ludwig? That is not a Ross there. And just four seconds. Comparison. See, they released a Nestea X of the same exact drum session. Um, there are telling you the difference between an easy X and an STX easy ex being that everything was pre processed STX being something that's raw. Check out the difference in the tones. This is Rock Warehouse. This is Randy. Stop drums again. It's gonna take a minute to load. Ah, One thing you should know big difference between them is that the easy X version is one gig. If I'm correct. One gig. The STX version is 20 gigs. Big difference there. All the raw drums and all your articulations Take up a lot of space so your computer needs to be up to the task. So check it out. Easy X versus STX. It's a raw snare, the same drums. I could go back to that Gretch that we had up earlier. That's raw. I mean, that doesn't sound that different than the raw drum session I was doing with Sean yesterday. And here's the groove through that Al load up the easy ex real quick just so you can hear the group through that. It's loading, all right. So as you can see from the slide, one thing that's cool about superiors, that you can load both easy access and STX is an easy drummer. You can't load. STX is your limited to just easy access, but you can load both. And actually, one of the things that really, really cool that I like to do is mix and match tones between easy exes and STX is it's not any different than when a producer records a drum set and goes to his custom samples. His custom go to samples that already have even mastering effects on them. So there you go. You can hear That's not what a natural kick sounds like without processing at all. So you have all kinds of cool stuff, too, Like in STX, though, you can get the roots, brushes and tools which, honestly, I don't. She was very often in what I do, but all right, so basically is you guys can hear from this, uh, easy X sounds mixed right out the gate. STX sounds raw. You can mix it. I would put the two together. So with that, we already demo those tones and ah, I can talk to you about why you wouldn't always use easy access. Um, one of the main reasons that I wouldn't use easy excess all the time is because I wanted to control individual aspects of the Trump Zone and be able to mix them myself. There's a certain point where using something that's premixed starts to sound really bad of you add too much stuff to it. If yeah, that snare might be great. But if you start adding a bunch of stuff to it, a bunch of Yukun compression, it's not gonna be so great anymore. Uh, and it might not work with your mix the way it ISS. So, uh, if you're doing a full on production, you're not going on to always go this route. You are gonna want raw drums. Um, and there is a few additional components that make a big difference in having album quality tracks like your room channels. Now you see, here I have an Ambien channel in a mono room. That's it. This is an easy acts, I think if you guys remember yesterday when I was talking about recording rooms and say that I would normally record two rooms behind the drum, set a stereo, pair a stereo pair in front of the drums, close up a stereo pair far off from the drums and maybe a mono at the back of the room. Have multiple options going into the mix and just changing out the room. Mike's alone can make a sound like a completely different drum set. I think that having a limited number of room mics will seriously impair your ability to mix on album, because so much of your drum sound comes from the rooms like your snare sound is not just your direct mike. It's the rooms and overheads and accumulation of those three things. So you wanna have more rooms? S T X, a load one up has tons of room options. Here's avatar, And as you can see and being close and be at mid and be a far ambient mono immune bullet, that's a lot that's like real life. And, ah, I will solo those out just so you could hear what they're like. Sounds like a room. So one of the things that I think is really cool about rock warehouses. Well, is all the room channels in that? I'm not trying to make this a commercial for this, but I would highly recommend it for this. All right, I'm gonna grab some MIDI. I remember having someone in my studio hearing the ah room channels on this and saying if I was a drummer right now, I would be really scared, because that's pretty much what a room channel sounds like when you're recording drums. Do you see if you really mess with this stuff, you can make it sound just like a real drums. Yesterday, I was messing with the overheads little and compressing the hell out of, um, um I didn't talk about too much and talk about it more in the mix. But I think that you guys will see that this sounds just like it will in real life. We do something cool here. So what I'm doing is I'm just compressing the hell out of a room track, and then I'm turning it back up. Maybe that releases a little slow. So turning that. All right, I have a jacked. I would normally not have it nearly that loud in the mix. more Just demonstrating to you guys how important these room channels are and what they can do for your overall drum sound. Once again, solo out the room without the room. Does there just a direct mike's? They sound pretty cool anyways. All right, so why does this matter and yes, asking you a question? Um, you're asking about the roommates in general? Why do the room Mike's matter? Um, it seems like they will glue a kid together instead. Make it sound like there's individual drums being played in the mix. Right? Like like drums in space, right? Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, that it's part of a kid instead of, like, single drums playing with no relationship to one another. Have you guys ever heard that before? When someone programs drums and it sounds like drums that call it drums in space, but just a bunch of disjointed drums happening. Uh, that's because there's no room you can't get that in your traditional drum drum programming software or a traditional drum machine. There are no rooms. The tune track rooms are part of what makes it great. That's part of what matters. This stuff sounds glued. What about you anything you could add about why anything that I've just showed is important whether it's layering or rooms. Uh, it sounds good. I mean, when you when you have that reverberation, you have a space. Uh, I mean, I think the glue was the best. The best word to use. I like that. Glue them together. I think it helps add some character to the set as well. So it's less sterile. Um, seems like the individual samples from the individual drums can feel kind of ah, sterile artificial. But by like, using the the mic bleed through that you showed and adding the room mic and everything. It it does kind of blend them together and give the entire kit some character, which I think is something that most people don't associate with drum programming. Uh, having any sort of character in there isn't really a part of it. Yes, some may I say, also, the room Mike was kind of dirty, you know, it was kind of some dirty squashing rather than just getting compression. And I feel like that little bit of great is kind of important to absolutely well drawn. This absolutely, um in in a mix. I find that there's usually two purposes Teoh room channels and one is toe add sheen to the Cymbals and the drums in length, sheen and length and then the other. So basically to enhance what's there? What the close mikes don't get close? Might get a lot of attack, but they don't really put it in a space. Uh, the room might give it that space, and for those, you don't actually have to make them dirty. Um, that's more those state clean, but the ones that are dirty. Um, it's more about the compression that glues everything together. Uh, they don't sound dirty right out the gate, though. You have to make them dirty. But the minute they do, the minute you do that, uh, basically makes everything sound like it was coming from the same place. Which is important. We do that. I don't know. We spend a long time working on that when we're working with real drums, measuring where we want the rooms to be walking around the room looking for the best possible sounding spot, and this is really no different than that. You've got a bunch of different room options here, and a bunch of different ways to affect them. And again if you Ah, if you do the same kinds of production tricks that you would on a real drum set, you'll get the same types of results. So say you compress the hell out of a room channel, go for that dirty thing, turn it down subtle. But it adds a lot and play with and without the rooms real quick. Okay, so you understand why it's important to have a bunch of room options. I think that based on everything you said, you probably understand why you should look at this like a drum production and not just like a drum machine or a sampler. And I think that it's super super important that you understand the difference between easy excess and STX is is that pretty much clear to you guys? An Internet ville? I'll just recap an easy exes for easy drummer. It's one gig and size has limited room channels in its premixed, So sounds good right out the gate. Excellent for writing or for using as a part of a larger scale production. STX is our proprietary to superior drummer. Now, Superior drummer can look both easy access and STX is, but the difference is an STX is raw and huge, but 20 gigs huge for rock Warehouse, and you get all the articulations and room channels that you would expect on a real session with a real drummer. So we'll get that slide for you in one second. You're just some drunken, you know, If we could have the guys in the booth go back to the easy X STX boxes on the on the keynote this slide, a couple slides back. Two boxes. There's two, but nope, two boxes. One says 20 gigs. One says one gig. We'll fix this all in and look so spare radio. Yeah, I was just recapping the differences between an easy accent and STX and why it's important to use both. So if you don't mind, since we have Bill here, would you mind kind of telling us a little about how you start something like an STX and how it becomes? I think that's a pretty interesting kind of process that you guys go through well, as I mean in a natural drum recording. Everything starts out raw, so that's mean the Rock Warehouse or STX is at every time we we record. It always starts as an STX because it's the raw samples. You have to remember that when l was showing, you know, the room channels, you do have bleed control of those room channels as well in STX is which means that every time a snare sit you have you're sampling not only the snare, but you're sampling the snare mic, the time like the floor Tom like the room mic that overheads the bullet mike that's being used. Those are all capturing samples off that snare hit. And in order to have control of that bleed function, um, you're the library. Volume is massive. So that's why you have 20 gigs worth of raw samples in an STX. So the process always starts raw, just like any other drum recording. I mean, it's no different. So what we do is we go to someone like Randy Stop, who's obviously legendary between, you know, the black album Motley Crue when he's done. And we said, Hey, we want toe. Essentially copy your process. Um, so we went to the warehouse, which, you know most you know, is you can't in Vancouver and it's It's one of the most recorded places in the world, and that was Randi selection and we he picked the drummer. He picks the mikes, he picks his process and we go from there and we learned, and that's essentially the STX is learning process. And then we go back to him and say, Let's let's make some awesome sounding mixed drums with Randy and and Randy mixes them and goes through his process. And the That's essentially what happens when an easy exits created. So a zey l put out, you know that the easy acts We've seen so many easy exes on regular albums, but it's a song writing tool. It's right on the box. You know, we Randy, has done done the work for you, whereas an STX is, you know you're gonna mold the drums around your mix. It's a production tool, and that's exactly what it's for. So one thing that's really cool, though, is blending the two together into a production because, hey, Brandi, stop. Sounds are great. Sometimes I do want that snare drum. Already, the weight is layered in with my own, just the same way that Audio hammer has our custom samples, uh, that we use every time. Sometimes I might want some of those easy X sounds on a recording, and there they are. But I would always use them in the context of superior drummer. If I'm doing a an actual mix because of all the options within the mixer and asked the exes and rooms and everything you can dio. So go back to the key takeaways and think of this is a, ah, full out production. There's not much of a difference between what you do in superior Drummer versus what you do in real life. The only difference is you're doing it on a computer versus a drum set like was set up over here. Uh, you're routing is same types of things. You have to pay attention to individual drums. You have to pay attention to tuning. You have to pay attention to your symbol selection velocities, which are equivalent to how hard the drummers playing all that stuff has to be paid attention to room channels, room Mike's. It's all equivalent to real life. Plus, there are a few extra options that you don't get in real life, like Bill said, like controlling bleed into room. Mike's later on. I'll show some cool tricks with that, but I bet lots of people who work with Room Mike's wish that they could have less symbols in their room likes. That's something you can do in Superior Drummer that you can't do in real life. It would be really awesome if you could have only Tom's and kick in your room. Uh, with Unless you only record Tom's and kick, that ain't gonna happen in real life, so understand the difference. Using both are any questions. We do have a few questions. 1st 1 that a couple of people mentioned is what are the concerns about phase when you're working with, like Ekstrom layering stuff in swapping things and from different kits? And how do you resolve those? Well, most of the time, it's pretty good. What I do is I listened for it like a real drum recording. And if I hear any phase issues of flip it and ah, when you use the bounce feature, which bounces everything out to individual wave forms, that would be where you check it, being that these were all real drums played back, not just arbitrarily put together samples, there will invariably be some differences in phase. There's no way around it. That's gonna happen. So you check it just like you check it on real drums. So bounce that stuff out and check those waves, so help, Uh, the other question is that we've got a few people asking what your thoughts are on. So obviously you're using superior here for virtual drums. Uh, what are your thoughts on the other virtual drums solutions out there, whether it's addictive drums or what's the B f D or whatever it is the other one on And, of course, slate drums. So why, why superior rather than those other solutions? Because of all the stuff I just mentioned all the room options of the articulation options. The fact that these come raw and basically the fact that you can take it anywhere you want it to go, I think, is why I would go with Superior of the mixer is pretty amazing. I mean, these off sounds features pretty killer to balance furniture. Killer Ekstrom is killer. There's really just so many features here that I don't see in the other ones or not implemented in the same way uh, I I just I go with this. I'm not I'm not really a fan of the other ones. So sorry. I'm sure there are right, but not not my thing.

Class Description

Recording drums that sound both hyper-polished and authentic has always been something of a black art — one that isn't taught at any school, one that you could only learn from one of the few elite engineers scattered across the planet. Until now.

In this three-day class, free to watch while live, you'll learn the real-world production techniques that producer Eyal Levi uses every day at Audiohammer Studios — on albums for bands like The Black Dahlia Murder, August Burns Red, Chelsea Grin, and Whitechapel. Eyal will show how to select the right drums for the sound you want, tune and set them up, and mic the kit. Oh, and did we mention that the legendary Sean Reinert (Cynic, Death) is the in-studio drummer?!

You'll also learn how to use virtual drums, including when to use Toontrack's Superior Drummer and other software instead of a human drummer. Finally, Eyal will reveal the closely-kept secrets for polishing tracks —everything from editing and sample replacement to layering samples. At the end of this class, you'll know the trade secrets of high-end drum production and be armed with a toolkit for creating world-class drum tracks.

Lessons

  1. Class Introduction
  2. The Tone Pie and Process Overview
  3. Getting the Lay of the Land and Q&A
  4. Assemble Your Gear
  5. Drum Tuning Part 1
  6. Drum Tuning Part 2
  7. Fine Tuning Tones Part 1
  8. Fine Tuning Tones Part 2
  9. General Guidelines of Tracking Drums
  10. Tracking with Sean Reinert
  11. Pop Quiz
  12. Basics of Superior Drummer
  13. EZDrummer vs Superior Drummer
  14. Constructing a Metal Drum Kit Part 1
  15. Constructing a Metal Drum Kit Part 2
  16. Constructing a Rock Drum Kit
  17. Grooves and Programming
  18. General Q&A
  19. Prepping Virtual Drums for the Mix
  20. Superior Review with Q&A
  21. Intro to Mixing and Drum Clean Up
  22. Interview with John Douglass
  23. Intro to Drum Editing
  24. Manual Editing Approach
  25. Editing with Beat Detective
  26. Editing with Elastic Audio
  27. Sample Layering
  28. Replacements
  29. Gain Staging and Bussing
  30. Mixing Essentials
  31. Compression and Parallel Compression
  32. Reverb and Automation
  33. Mixing Tips and Tricks
  1. Bonus: EZDrummer - Introduction
  2. Bonus: EZDrummer - Intro to EZDrummer
  3. Bonus: EZDrummer - EZDrummer Foundations
  4. Bonus: EZDrummer - How a Drummer Plays
  5. Bonus: EZDrummer - Part Writing Part 1
  6. Bonus: EZDrummer - Part Writing Part 2
  7. Bonus: EZDrummer - Part Writing Q&A
  8. Bonus: EZDrummer - Intro to Grooves
  9. Bonus: EZDrummer - Writing from Scratch
  10. Bonus: EZDrummer - Intro to Fills
  11. Bonus: EZDrummer - Writing Fills
  12. Bonus: EZDrummer - Mixing in Your DAW
  13. Bonus: EZDrummer - Bussing and EQ
  14. Bonus: EZDrummer - Compression and Reverb
  15. Bonus: EZDrummer - Conclusion with Q&A
  16. Bonus Video: Editing
  17. Bonus Video: Toms and Cymbals
  18. Bonus Video: Snare Midi
  19. Bonus Video: Kick Midi

Reviews

El Bulbo Studio
 

This class will give you confidence when tracking drums. Eyal's interaction with the drummer will help you communicate better with the artist to get the best performance and tone. The added bonus on drum replacement is very valuable and will improve your mixes.

a Creativelive Student
 

My drum sound has improved by 150% and counting. I'm grateful that Eyal would share this information with us. Not every technique is for every situation, but they all work. It's up to you to have the vision and to use the right tools for the job. Thank you guys!!

Michael Nolasco
 

To the guy that said buyer beware: this is an advanced production class, it's not meant for beginners who are learning to mic up a kit. I'm a beginner, but i'm using superior drummer, so this class was perfect for me to learn how to process drums post recording. I refer to it constantly. The editing videos are also prime information.