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Superior Drummer Master Class

Lesson 22 of 26

Microphone Assignment

Rikk Currence

Superior Drummer Master Class

Rikk Currence

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Lesson Info

22. Microphone Assignment

Lesson Info

Microphone Assignment

Okay, So what does this mean? How does this really accommodate or or function within the realm of superior drummer? And what does it mean to the overall production? So a couple of things just to keep in mind again is that the effect of adding an extra, um, is relative to the method of production or performance you're working on. And there are three components that you have tohave in line in order to make sure that that Ekstrom functions properly in your session Number one, just like we showed you go to your menu, select from whichever expansion you want assigned the microphones, right. So high hat would drag it over cause it's dark green. We know that it's gonna line up and sound the best, but that doesn't mean you can't grab all of these other ones and drag them over if you want to. It just means that we, as a company to track, have taken the time to do the work. To say this is probably gonna work best for everybody. This this makes sense. OK, so you have to select the proper drum. Yo...

u have to select the proper microphone assignment so that it's available to you in the mixer steps, one in steps two. And then if you're not going to replace one of the default settings for that instrument, if you're not going to swap it out with the hi hats, they're already there. If you're going to build or add in addition to, you need to come over to the mapping page, Be prepared to know where you want a map, all of these drums. So let me show you one that's not so cut and dry. So let's ah, we'll delete this guy. Awesome! And then when you delete something to, um, you can delete it from the mixer in the microphone assignment page. But let's say that we want to go into we've got with our high hats. Okay, so these are the things that we've got right now, so I was just double checking. Let's come over here and say that we want to add I don't know what we do that special. Just add another floor. Tom Floor Tom to, for instance, Microphone assignment. Floor time to Okay, Snow, even a floor Tom, too. Fantastic. So that's there. It's going to be from S one drummer. Fine it's there and we want the 16 inch to W. So that's another interesting thing to realize or remember or even notice if you haven't already. The kit drum positions aren't relegated to how you would normally talk about them. OK, it's my 10 12 14. It's rack Tom one rack Tom to Rack Tom three 45 floor Tom one floor time to that's how it's relegated. That's how it knows when you're replacing the existing 10 floor time to is a 20 in the metal foundry. Maybe it's an 18 but it's still going to go to where the 18 is in the new one because it's floor Tom to it's not 18 to 20 it's This was the second floor Tom in this expansion. It's gonna replace the second floor time in this expansion. That's why we try to keep things as uniform as possible. We name things because it makes life much easier. Makes sense, of course. Does. Okay, so you've got this drum you've got floor time tool to, huh? You're a floor, Tom Tool you got floor time to. You're not gonna replace this one. You want to add it so you would come to mapping right now, you've got these three articulations. You're in the notes menu. You've got a number of things you can do here. So let's say for all people considered where we had to. Caesar's doing the kick drum you Let's add the floor, Tom to the kick drum. Um, so let's take right and left. It's interesting to note that there are two different articulations, obviously, right hand left hand, which is nice to know, and then the rim shot. So let's add the rim shot because we could do some kind of cool things with it. Take the room shop. Boom. We want to join it. So now we have a MIDI node. Right? So we've got the floor, Tom. We're putting that in its place. We only want this to trigger 25 to 1 27 But now I want to come over here and select that drum. I want to change some things. I want to make things delayed a little, and I wouldn't drop the pitch just a little. I wanna fix it on turning soft velocity hits. I don't want anything coming and still like 88. Okay, great. I've got that selected will put that up. Multiple hits, emulation I want to turn on. We've got that great just for this articulation to. And now, with all that stuff which we've gone over the past two days, every time the kick drum plays nothing happens because I don't have a mini packed again. I don't have a grew for you to play. You would think that I would just be used to having that ready. But since I'm not here, we go right. It doesn't seem like it be a good fit. But we go, We change some things, makes sense. So the we go check in our mixer. What's happen? Here's my four time What I got. I've got that. They're fantastic. Now let's come over here now. Notice in that kick pattern as it pulls back a little bit from 1 26 Clearly, you're not hearing the bouncy floor. Tom got got. So again, there's no rules now. Obviously, we added some memory so we could do some things. We could set the layer limits two Unlimited, which is gonna add some more memory. But why not? We're here. And then our voice limit again for the sustained Remember our voice limits or how many samples play before the 1st 1 sort of fades out. So on just this drum, if we like that Bong Bong bong and we wanted to ah, permeate a little more we could raise our voice layer limits So we get a little more sustained the drum and it seems subtle. But again, all these things we learned yesterday Now, the minute we have this extra matted, we've literally changed this group. How's everyone feel? Cool. Good example. I mean, it was that quick. It was that easy. Was that fast and again? The more you do this, the more you have a little sort of, um, time with it. The more it makes sense to you, the quicker this process becomes so that the the link between your creativity and your execution is like null and again. That's a weird thing to say about superior Germer. Easy armor to obviously prides itself on being quick. You get in, you get out. You can figure everything out very nicely very efficiently. It's appear Drummer does have a lot of things going on, but I think again, once you've mastered note mapping and once you've mastered basically how to build the best many nodes for what it is you're doing, how you incorporate your extra ums, how to position things in the mixer where things live in the big scheme of things and how they manage. The resource is I don't think there's anything you can't do from a production standpoint with this program. And again, it's superior drummer. It came out in 2008 and most of the things we're showing you today are still pretty cutting edge now. So imagine if we were to ever do more superior drummer stuff. How much mawr cutting edge it's gonna bay. So something that just keep in mind too, is you can take this particular drum just because mental you think OK, well, I've used that drum. You could still take this right. Articulation. You could apply to everything. I mean, everything could out floor time on it. I mean, it's just because you've layered it with the kick drum doesn't mean anything. You could take the left hit if you wanted Teoh, bring that to the join that, and then you could take Okay, you've got that many. No, that's fine. We'll just keep everything here will keep it all equal, right? More floor time. There's never enough floor, Tom. Then you could take the right again. Put it there, Right? There was nothing there. Clearly see the keys or white. So there's nothing there, right? And then you get Now the one thing that you do need to know is that since this drum has already been affected, the way we've affected that drum is going to be prevalent in every instance of it. You're not going to be able to go in and change the way that it's layered from an envelope standpoint or from the pitch of the human. Those things were sort of OK, you get one shot at changing or altering the instrument. And then, as you apply that articulation to other places in the map, it's gonna have those effects on it. That makes sense. And then again, you can always go back in and say, Okay, well, we haven't I haven't used this, Mike. I can drag this mike and there's a 1,000,000 different options for adding extra ums and to just give you an example. Not that these air extremes, but to give you sort of a look as I mentioned earlier, depending on which library you bring in. And I love bringing this library in for this example. Yeah. I mean, this is the hip hop Easy X. This is just a standard kit. But every single one of these represents a drum that we may not have had a graphic four or that wouldn't have been available right in this particular configuration. So what happens when you bring that in is, of course will kill the outputs. And the bus is the mixture is pretty impressive, too, and superior for all of this stuff. What did that groove sound like? Hip hop style. So nothing changes right other than the actual instruments election. When you change a library, your many groups still plays. It's gonna be mapped to the default mapping. We didn't save anything in that last kit, so it's gone. If we want to re program that floor time to be a part of the kick or snare, we'd have to go back in and do it again. But this is just a indicator. I mean, you can pull up all sorts of different Ekstrom configurations and like we showed earlier. When you are involved with them, the superior producer presets, for instance, you do a combined. This will make more sense now. We looked at this yesterday. We want a load, all the extra arms, right? So in this preset, of course, it's giving us the option to load all this stuff. So we want, yes, but you'll see that there's all sorts of extremes over here that are gonna load that are a part of this preset that have been done for you by another producer. Now you can watch the loading times down here. Stuff's happening, so when you click on stuff you don't hear sound, don't freak out. It takes a while. Sometimes it's got a load. There's tons of things. But this is also one of those scenarios. For instance, were in this particular producer preset. Some of these extra ums that exist are only available in the preset. You won't find them in an expansion. You can't add them as your own Ekstrom. They are locked into this particular preset and Onley available in this preset. And again that's a courtesy to the producers we work with again. A lot of guys have snare samples and kick samples that they love the blend with superior stuff. But you know, they don't necessarily want to give the stuff away for free. And we understand that's what's locked into the preset. There's a couple of preset packs like that, but it's really cool. And again, you can always look. You can always look at a producer preset from the way that things were mapped or how things are click on them and see you can kind of learn how the producers have put together their articulations as well. So one of the great things about mapping isn't just the ability to customize. It's the ability to see how other people have done stuff and then think may Maybe that'll work for me. Maybe that's kind of a cool feature. No, let's go back to our default. It's kind of my go to or an avatar, right? And keep doing the same things. Just so you kind of get used to the process. Let's go to the default kids. Yeah, I probably appear default. Yes. Boom. Okay, so one of the questions I get all the time is when you're in the mapping page and your layering things, and this is kind of important. What is the maximum amount of things that you can layer on a thing? Mirror Mirror? American. So, for instance, let's say I want to create a midi node. How many different sounds again can I have in a node that are applied to one key? So I want to layer kick drums on one key and having triggered different velocities. Can I do that? Yes, you can actually lay up to 127 notes in a mini node because there are, ah, 127 mini notes again. Each note would technically only fire for one velocity level, and that could get a little complicated. But you could do it. You're limited by your CPU and your RAM and the ability to be patiently stacking things one velocity layer at a time. How many many nodes can I have? Well, you could have a mini node on every key in the keyboard or every drum on the EQ it or, I mean, it's what you have access to within the realm of your hardware and the software. We can accommodate that again as long as you have CPU and you have the memory. There's nothing you really can't do when it comes to stacking and working with all of these instruments. So again, this is why we find it's really conducive to own a number of different expansion libraries. And more importantly, why we go to all the effort in the question mark part to ensure that you understand in the description category what's what and why. It's that way what the drums are, how they were recorded, where they were at. Because again, people that work in production and sound and work on music for living reason for a very serious hobby generally tend to develop a sense for what something can sound like based on its description. So you can save yourself a lot of work by reading some of these descriptions of the drums that we've recorded on where they were recorded to know that. Okay, for instance, maybe I don't want a layer this snare that was done in this room with this near that was done in this room because in my mind those two rooms are really compatible, and there probably won't be as many miking options. But at the same time, you could just go crazy, wild and decide. Hey, I want to pull every microphone over, you know, for instance, let's go to construct taken Ekstrom Really simple this time we'll take a kick drum and we're gonna take it from Ah, Layer, which is one of my favorite studios. And then we'll go to this 14 24 lot of great now in microphone assignment. We know that these mikes, because they're dark green, should give us all kinds of awesome, right? Like this should line up. But why not take the snare drum top, Mike and the floor Tom like and the Ambien farm like And the overhead mike. Oh, let's do this cause this one's probably not gonna work at all. All crap. What's do this one, too? Let's just bring all these mikes over just for this kick drum. We didn't tell you to. We didn't tell you not to. We just said, if it's dark green, these air more than likely going to be the easiest to work with. But now that that's all there, let's go to the mixture and see what's happened, shall we? And then, of course, at the end of our mixer. We see all of these mike channels here just for that one kick drum Sky's the limit, and we haven't map this kick drum yet, so we'll just simply go into, ah, mapping. And you know, it's one articulation because it's right foot is going drag it down. We're gonna what's replace it will replace its Now That's our new kick drum. Really simple groove way. Go to the mixture. Notice that Theo kick drum channels that we had for the kick drum that was there aren't giving us any signal because the kick drum is not there anymore. It's been replaced by our new extra, um, which is giving us everything we never want. How come nothing's coming through the far someone tell me why anyone online we don't have it on so totally different studio. Totally different room. You can already hear delaying phasing issues. Yeah, eyes that right or wrong? Nope. Anyone that knows anything about recording anyone knows anything about engineering knows that phase issues are natural byproduct of recording something beautifully, and an engineer can use the face to his advantage. Or you can totally get rid of it all together and try and create something unique. It's an artistic tool. Obviously, there are is good phase and bad phase. And while you would think one is obvious and one is not again, we didn't tell you was gonna work. We just said you had the option to do so, so you can use that accordingly. And at the end of the day, if it didn't work and you weren't happy with it, it's very simple, cause you can go in and turn it off. And if you don't like that anymore, so you've got that face turned off. Even just turn it on. You can come back into the microphone assignment and c ambient far. Okay, if you wanted to delete the channel, you could, or just keep it, maybe for a little effect or try bussing are Try playing with all of the routing or try playing with the bleed again. Sky's the limit, and again we would make this generic so it's not in the way. But that's our new kick drum, something else people do with extra ums. That's why we have empty kit. You can start from scratch. You can basically just start with nothing but extra ums and build your own drum set from all different components and pieces from the get go. Now that takes a little bit of time because you have to map everything. And you certainly have to make sure that you understand where everything is at, but it can be easily done. So let's get rid of this right at a new Ekstrom. So you could say I want a new kick drum and I wanted from Music City USA and it's kicked room and we're not gonna use generic. And then you can grab it right click and be like, Boom! Oh, look at that. And you could say But that's not good enough. I want another new kick drum. And you could say, Well, I want this one from the metal foundry and you can say I want the right kick from metal foundry and you can grab that and put it there. People are gonna ask, What about all these shadows from the pieces that would normally be there? They don't go away there permanently There. You're just gonna have to deal with it. Just build over him, you know, don't worry about it, and then you could be like. But wait a minute. I totally want another kick, Trump. Because why wouldn't you? You can have another new kick, trump. And you can say what I want this kick drum from. Well, let's say the independent STX, which is actually really cool STX and you want that kick drum, so Oh, that one just happened. So now you have already started with the three kick drum set and then go in and say, Well, I want this kick drum to be 28 inches. This kick drum, I want to be 22 inches. What about this one? This one? No. 1 24 20 to 24. 28. I've got three different kick drums now. You need to go in, grab all the microphone assignments, add those in, go in map all the kick drums, put those in and so on and so forth. But this is how you would go about building a custom e kit. This is how you would go about saying, OK, I'm going to save this and then you build your empty kit. Then what would you do? Save as And you'd save your empty kit and then you could go into here and add all of your facts and save it is a combined preset and a project just to keep everything backed up. Affect every drum map, every drum. It is limitless. You could do this for days before you even pushed record or had anyone come in play. And as long as again, you have the wherewithal to make sure you're checking. Your resource is right. So I've got three kick drums loaded Right now it's only 88 megabytes. That's awesome. Three kick drums. 88 mags. Right. Although I haven't loaded any mic channels yet, so that's gonna change things. But I've got my layers. I've got a pretty good voice limits. So on and so forth. Pretty awesome. Pretty awesome stuff. Anyone, anything questions, concerns, comments, got some. Once you have built a custom kit and have a channel represented for each piece of in the S T mixer, how do you assign individual track inside your daw toe accurately represent or mere the channels you have in that? You might just come back after lunch for the answer that Okay, we're going to open a pro tool session after lunch. We're gonna go over multi track, out from the ground up. So a couple things we've got an affected track we're gonna listen to And we're gonna talk about all the midi subtleties and all the cool things we're gonna walk through step by step, multi ing out at X drums, multi out. And then we're actually gonna look at a couple of other things. One of them is using Easy drummer to to trigger all the sounds in Sapir Drummer to through your Daw so that you can work with your midi and he's a drummer to But here all the sound custom drums, extras and everything else in Superior two point. Oh, so that is an after lunch question. Sweet. One more question about blending notes. Can you blend notes that there crossover points using the velocity map? Yeah, I would think so. Let's try it. When in doubt, just go do it. All right, let's go to Avatar. Uh, we want the default kids. Everybody knows. Uh, priest dio Yes, Yes. Three drum three kick drums were just so impressive. Vast, Just drums. Okay, so let me make sure I understand the question correctly. Can you blend midi notes through the velocity at their craft point at their crossover points using the velocity map. Sure, ultimately, what you would do this is this is how we need to work. So you have too many nodes that ultimately weren't assigned to the same key. They'd be too many nodes on two different keys. So in this in this instance, let's say you have a to snare drum stacked and a snare drum in a floor. Tom stacked That makes sense. Everyone follow me. And what I believe is being asked if if there's a way as those two things blend and they escalate or deescalate and velocity, if there's a way to cross over where one becomes more prominent and the other one sort of fades away, and a lot of that is going to be dependent on the curve you set. So look here. That's this kind of one of those things where I think we should just do it. So let's take center on the edge and let's join those two. Okay, so, um, let me bring it over one more. Sorry, I'm in the wrong menus. Uh, okay. Join. Okay, Theo, That's one mini note. I'm not saying that it's music or you never do. But you have won many know there. So if the question then becomes, we'll take it one step at a time. So many node 1 may know, too. Let's get rid of this on this one. That one. Oh, that's the one I have. Let's remove. That's remove. Come on. There we go. So right, work with me here, center and, you know, many known. Okay, those are gonna trigger at the same time. Nice. I like it. So the question becomes, Can you have more than one many node on an actual key? Technically, yeah, but it's gonna get weird. And then the question would become Could you take one and basically faded over using this velocity map? Yes, and no. Um, the challenge you're gonna have is that ultimately and I should say this, the challenge will have will be if you're physically trying, Might. My thought would be You'd want to do this because you were playing. So as you were playing a one velocity, you have to sounds playing. And then as you get bigger, those sounds go away. And then to new sounds come in. That wouldn't necessarily be a fade as much as a cut off point. So ultimately you be programming again. You know, this velocity would be one 0 to 50. Okay, Both of these and you'd only need one many note to do this on one key. Because ultimately you could break this up. Anyway. You want to So you have 0 to 50 would be here. I could type of big easy 0 to 50 and then you could start here would be 51. Or you could do this the same thing. 0 to 50 right? Or you could do it the right way. to 50. Then you would add tomb or things here that started 51 toe whatever. So they would naturally, as you gradually went up that the fate would be implied by the software. But you ultimately, instead of having too many nodes, you just have all the things in one mini know that you wanted. And they would naturally cross raid cross fade based on the articulation volume you have set. So if again, we went here and we said, OK, we're gonna add that we're gonna join that so we get the rack time the snare center. And then we want to take this at that. Right? So now we have three things, and then let's add why not? Why wouldn't we had this? We want to add that. So we want to join all that. You have four things on one node on again. You can have up to 127 things on a node. This one a go 02 50. Okay, this one would also go 0 to 50. Then this one would go because you want to start a 51 to 1 27 and then 51 to 1 27 So to test this, then you come down here. You know, select here. Note here. Excuse me. Back here. Carrie, sneer. What are note Go? We just had it. That's everything. Crossed over naturally. There. So you're coming. Your coming into showing you These two are playing from 0 to 50. Then it kind of switches over. So the fade would happen in the actual software. You wouldn't have to do anything. Now. Could you go in, for instance, to select this floor, Tom And Okay, so this could have a different fade point. It's like this and this could have a different fate point. Sure. You could do all that stuff very easily. Um, and then could you save it? Is a preset shore. You could add a gate. So you mean then ultimately again. As you collect this minute, you could do whatever you want to so that the trick isn't the reason you wouldn't need more than one mini note on one kids because you could add so many different actual notes to that note. So, yeah, you could do it. Now if you were trying to do it between two notes again or two different instruments, for instance, a floor Tom and snare. That's gonna be a lot of how you just position the either the MIDI performance of the actual physical performance. Everyone's like what? But yes, you can do again. We could keep going with this. Every single component. The shift changes here and again. If you're following on your grid, that's where you could program. Right there. It comes in right there. You could kind of make this little Speicher. You could have this be smoother. You could lose the gate a little bit. Bring this. I mean, there's a lot of things, so it could be more gradual. But yes, is the short answer for that very long demonstration. Sometimes I don't know. So you just have to do it. And I wanted to do it and we did it, so we're better for it. But yes, that's answered the question.

Class Description

Superior Drummer is the industry standard for pro-level virtual drums. It is used on countless albums, at nearly every studio on the planet. Yet, most users are barely scratching the surface of the software’s capabilities.

In Superior Drummer Master Class, Rikk Currence, CEO of Toontrack North America, will give you the definitive guide to Superior Drummer. He’ll help you unlock countless new workflow efficiencies and creative possibilities. 

You’ll learn about:

  • The basics of the Superior Drummer interface
  • How to use the Construct page to assemble your kit 
  • Getting the Grooves page to work with MIDI 
  • Working the Mixer page – including effects and routing 
  • Navigating the Mapping page and using Superior with e-drums

You’ll also learn the advanced features that are the real key to getting the most out of Superior. Rikk will show how to use X-drum to assemble custom kits and layer sounds to create custom drums, and how to use the Bounce page, a highly-underutilized feature in Superior that enables you to bounce out every piece of the kit as its own audio file – the ultimate solution to bleed problems!

Superior Drummer Master Class with Rikk Currence will reveal the full potential of Superior and enable you to do things you only dreamed were possible.

Ratings and Reviews

Student Work

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Shayne Sheldon

I am very pleased with this course. It was originally presented as a free live stream and is the first CreativeLive course that I have taken in. I am so impressed, that I have purchased it. If you are a current Toontrack Superior Drummer 2 user (or are thinking of buying SD 2) and are looking for a guided way to learning this software, this course is one of the best learning methods I have ever come across. I doesn't matter what your experience level is with Superior Drummer-- there is something here for beginners, intermediate, and advanced. Though I would recommend having a working knowledge of MIDI, audio and computers. Absolute beginners to using software instruments and creating music in their computer might find the information in this course a bit overwhelming. Instructor Rikk Currence takes you thoroughly through basic to advanced concepts showing the true depth of this virtual instrument program. Rikk takes you through the program settings and options; creating custom virtual drum kits; settings for MIDI controllers and E-Drum kits; using the SD 2.0 as a stand alone virtual instrument, as well runninf it as a plug-in in a Digital Audio Workstation (D.A.W.) like Avid's Pro Tools. So much more is covered in this course, that I can't fully begin to share it all in this review. The knowledge I gained from this CreativeLive two day course has given me extra insight, increasing my functionality with Superior Drummer 2. Two thumbs up for this Master Class-- I can't recommend it enough to all Superior Drummer 2 users Thanks to Rikk Currence and CreativeLive for a superior course on Toontrack's Superior Drummer 2.

Ian Stephenson

Great course, the tutor kept it entertaining and held our interest whilst still getting over a huge wealth of detail for all levels of user. recommended :-)


Killer class! Well worth purchasing. Each lesson is effectively thorough, as well as comfortably paced. And Rikk’s sense of humor makes the learning process all the more enjoyable.