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Old 2008-04-18, 19:11
Reason1O1's Avatar
Reason1O1 Reason1O1 is offline
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Posts: 3,096
Indication when a drum lane or automation lane unused

This one I would tag as a "minor" inconvenience, but one that seems to keep wasting my time.

Here's my situation. I start out with a Redrum and load up a kit, which takes advantage of all the channels. From there, I create my patterns, add them to the sequencer, and work from there editing velocity, rearranging the notes if need be. Lots of editing and changes throughout the clips for the entire length of the song.

Now, inevitably I find myself in a situation where, for example, I listen to what I thought was a good drum sample, and decide it works in some spots and not in others. So I delete out the drum hits in the offending spots in the sequencer, and keep the drum hits in others. Now comes the hard part and the crux of the biscuit: I have to add in the new drum sample. Since I can't change the original drum sample, I need to find a free channel in redrum. Not an easy task.

Problem is this: there's no way for me to easily see which drum channels are in use through the entire length of the song. So I end up having to put focus on the redrum note edit lane, and scan the entire length of the song to locate a free channel with no drum hits. It would be a very simple matter if there was an indication LED or the drum lanes were highlighted if not in use, or just something to visually tell me "hey, you're not using this drum channel (even though there is a sample loaded in the channel). It's free to use"

I know there are workarounds, and like I said it's a minor problem. But it's one that drives me bonkers, and could be easily fixed by a drum lane "in use" indicator of some kind.

Same goes for any lane that is not in use, whether it be for automation, notes, or what have you. Best I've come up with so far is to zoom out so far so that you see all or the majority of the arrangement on the screen without having to scroll, and then looking to see which lanes don't contain clips. But this could be made easier.

link to my tunes
Old 2008-04-21, 22:35
ssilk ssilk is offline
Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 13
Re: Indication when a drum lane or automation lane unused

I can't find any mistake in your way of creating the drums...

With R4 I make the drums much different than with R3 and I think this is a very good way and I want to show you how I do it:
I create for every instrument an own device and plug them together in one big Drum-Mixer.

An device is for example a shaker. I take some sample, that sound like a shaker, play them together and tune them, until I think, this could be a shake. Or something new - it doesn't matter. I can play this instrument on the keyboard as a singlke instrument and it should sound good - that's all what is needed here.
With this method in mind I create all drum instruments: Basedrum, Snare, Shakers, Toms/Hihats etc. depends very much on the type of sound.

So I create for every device a lane. Or for a single device some different tracks, e. g. depening on how I think I stroke at this decice.

Afterwards (after an hour or so) I see all the tracks in the sequencer and I can bring them together. And now you are at the point where the hole afford begins to make sense: The base sounds good, except, when the second bass runs, then you take another basedrum, which is nearly equal, but has some more hights.
The arrangement-features of the new sequencer is really worth to think about changing the hole way you make your songs. Really! You can work like a profi: If the base-drum doesn't fit you needs, just make a second basedrum with a new Redrum-device, copy the hole track and mix the resulting sound to a new sound.

Don't think about using the same device over and over, just make a new one!

The last weeks I begun even to split the sound of a single sample of a single device into different paths and route the signals through different devices; e.g. one goes through a Scream, the other through a Equalizer and the third through a Chorus (just for example!). All signals come at the end to a mixer, where I also add Reverb etc.

For a single snare drum I had at the end about 14 devices. But the result is ... it is a dream: The snare sounds exactly as I wish.

So, as a result of of my experiences of the last weeks I can say: THINK BIG. Reason makes it possible to route single signals over so many routes that this can never been done in a normal studio. In mix you can take the parts of the sound, you want to hear.

If you don't exactly know, what you want, don't think about using a single Redrum for more than 3 samples. Use instead the sequencer to keep the overview over the hole project and think with the sequencer and the consequences to the devicees and mixers this will cause.

Old 2008-04-21, 23:08
Reason1O1's Avatar
Reason1O1 Reason1O1 is offline
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Re: Indication when a drum lane or automation lane unused

I see exactly how you're doing it, and there's nothing wrong doing it your way. Well, actually, there's one small flaw with your method. CPU resources. It's very easy to think big with Reason, but I don't have the fastest computer on the market, and can't think big all the time. The whole reason why I want to do things as I outlined is in order to be efficient and not use many devices at once. With your methodology, you're wasting a lot of resources. In fact, you'd be better off creating your drum sounds from several subtractors, instead of using several redrum units. You'll find yourself conserving your CPU.

The whole point of my argument is to make things more efficient and at the same time visually indicate the inefficiencies (ie: the free lanes). Why on earth would you want to create 10 redrums, each with only a single sample? This makes no sense to me. It's much easier to have all your drums in a single redrum, and send each channel out to a mixer (creating a sub-mix). YOu can still put effects between the drum channel and mixer or better yet, use send effects in the drum submix (mixer) that can be used by all drum hits.

Separate redrums? why why why?

I appreciate your response, but this goes entirely against what I am trying to accomplish, and would actually make my situation worse, not better.

again, no offense, but it's true.

Link to my tunes.
Old 2008-04-23, 01:59
ssilk ssilk is offline
Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 13
Separate instruments in lanes

: Well: I explain it.

Did you know, that a Redrum uses much less CPU than a subtractor? This is for all devices in Reason: Sample-devices take less CPU than the real-time-synthesizers! Try it out: create 20 Subtractors and 20 Redrums and look which creates more load.

"Why do I want to create 10 Redrums?"
I have never said, that I create 10 Redrums.
I said, that I create for every single instrument a lane!
I explained it with Redrums. But I really use every device for that. Even Thor.

It will be more clear, what I mean with "a lane for every instrument", if you try this: Load from the Orchester Sound Bank for example the "Perc Set A.sxt." This is an NN-XT with many different samples, which are sometimes very nice for more orchestral drums.
Now, if you try out this patch on your keyboard you hear that there are many different samples in it. Of course I use not every sample, but maybe some. I plug the sample to different outputs of the XT and put different effects on them. You can have hours of fun with this simple patch and I created really cool sounding drums with just that.

But the important part is: If I use this patch, I would never try to put all the different drum hits in one lane. Instead I create for every instrument a separate lane.

And why shouldn't this method even be used for a Redrum? The question is only: How could you use this?

Well, if I hear your songs, I thought you are currently using a single lane for your Redrum, right?
How about this: If you have finished a part of your drums, then separate all the instruments to single lanes. This is very easy if you zoom out the clip-view and then just select the notes of one instrument. Select for example all basedrum-hits, cut them, create a new lane in the same track, create a clip in the lane, position the marker, and paste the notes. This must be done for example 10 times, if you will use all 10 samples of the Redrum.
But you needn't! That's important: For the hihats this maybe doesn't make sense, because hihat-samples are always played together. And some drummers say also, that the basedrum and the snare are only ONE instrument. You see: It depends.

But I repeat: I create a single lane for every instrument - and I define what an "instrument" is!

After this action, your drums sounds exaclty as before, but with the difference, that you can see the song-context in the sequencer. This makes sense: Before that you created the drum in detail and concentrated on every hit. After that it is in general better to see the drums in the context of the song.
And so you can see now for example where the basedrums begin.
You can mute the base just by removing the notes from that clip or pressing "m" (mute) to look, how this sounds. If you put all notes in one track, this is maybe more complicated.
And (to come back to the origin of this posting) of course you see exactly - if you have named all the lanes properly - which sample isn't used till now.

"Separate Redrums? Why"
Ok, I lied. I also created drums by submixing it etc. You are right. But I use not always the same method and try to invent new. I found out, that for dancing music it seems to be better, to have only one combinator and inside a Redrum, which routes the gate-signal to the different drum instruments ect. I found no generality in this!

But what always (!) works is the separation of the lanes as instruments!

For example I made a month ago a song which had exactly this setup with one big combinator for the drums. Then I found out by "happy accident", that another device sounds under some circumstances like a basedrum. And then I wanted to hear, how this instrument sounds in context. All I had to do was to copy the base line to this new instrument, mute the old baseline and try out what happens: Is it worth to work more with this sound or is it useless? Takes only some seconds.

So you see, that if you are using the sequencer properly, it doesn't matter, how you are creating the drums. You can think as an arrangeur and not as a mechanic. And I think the new sequencer in Reason is really a great tool and I just begin to explore the possibilities.

Old 2008-04-23, 02:11
Reason1O1's Avatar
Reason1O1 Reason1O1 is offline
Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 3,096
Re: Separate instruments in lanes

Ok.. I think I see where you're going with this now. I thought you meant a different device. That's my fault. I'm sorry. I must be a bit brain dead today. But yes, a separate lane for each drum sound makes perfect sense. And I do this sometimes, if things are getting overly complex. So yes, I do see your point.

and I'm not so sure about the redrum being less cpu intensive if it has a sample in each channel. But I'll take your word for it. I've never actually compared them the way that you have here.

Thanks so much for the info. You are part of what makes these forums so great. I love learning from all of you.

Any way I can make my music better. I'm always open to new ideas. So please keep them coming!

Link to my music

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