Tag Archives: drum machine

Let There Be Loops

If it’s Thursday then there must be another excellent Reaktor video tutorial from Brent Kallmer at BluewaterVST. This time around, Brent looks at rendering loops from Reaktor grooveboxes, which sounds simple at first blush but Brent takes you deeper into some of the tools and options available to you when hosting Reaktor in Ableton Live.

Says Brent:

In this tutorial, let’s take a look at how to bounce individual parts of a groove from Aerobic and SineBeats—two stunning REAKTOR grooveboxes. Both are drum synths (they synthesize drum hits rather than playing samples) and their penetrating, glossy sounds are ideal for techno and glitch (or anything else that needs a synthetic touch).

Great stuff! I think the grooveboxes in Reaktor 5 are some of the most under-appreciated and under-used tools out there, mainly because people just don’t know what to do with them, and as Brent says, sometimes there are just too many options. Rendering loops this way is a great strategy to narrow things down and get something going.

Tutorial Videos on X0X Style Drums in Reaktor – and more!

Reaktor Tips readers may remember the name Owen Vallis from this post where I discussed his brilliant use of modulo instead of a step filter to shore up Reaktor’s clock functionality for use in sequencers. Owen has been busy crafting a series of Reaktor tutorial videos and uploading them to Vimeo, the latest being a hefty overview of compressors and envelope followers:

Reaktor Tutorial: Building Compressors from FlipMu on Vimeo.

I encourage you to check out everything on their channel, but today I want to highlight Owen’s series on X0X style sound design in Reaktor, starting with kicks:

Reaktor Tutorial: x0x Kicks from FlipMu on Vimeo.

…and moving on to snares:

Reaktor Tutorial: x0x Snares from FlipMu on Vimeo.

…and claps and rim shots:

Reaktor Tutorial: x0x Claps and Rim Shots from FlipMu on Vimeo.

Reaktor can be a technical jungle and it’s easy to get lost in the details of math and programming, so it’s nice to see instructional material that focuses more on the immediacy of sound design and producing practical output. I should do more of that myself. A big thank you to Owen and FlipMu for the great videos.

ParamDrum: fun with TR samples and misc. effects

I found a terrific little dubby echo here courtesy of Boscomac and decided to hotwire it into my Paramdrum ensemble.

I added a router to the beat delay like so:
Whenever one of the beat repeat buttons is engaged, the “compare” module detects that its output is  greater than zero – this changes the multiplier from zero to one on the extra outputs where the sound is directed to the Echophonic effect. If you have ParamDrum it’s a quick and easy modification. This way, the dry signal doesn’t normally go through the Echophonic and it becomes a haze that drifts around the stuttering when you engage the beat repeat.
This is one of the many reasons I like Reaktor rather than compiled VSTs – you can do little tweaks like this to existing ensembles as the mood strikes you. Here’s how it sounds:

This uses the samples from an earlier edition of Paramdrum, the TR edition, which has a sample map of simpler, cleaner drum hits – analogue sounding but with a morphing twist. You can download the TR edition samples for free here. Of course, I think they sound best in Paramdrum. 🙂

Like what you’re hearing? Buy Paramdrum here. (You need a full working installation of Reaktor 5 to use this instrument, not just Reaktor player)

(Download Boscomac’s Echophonic effect free here – he has lots of other very cool goodies too)