Questions & Answers

Drum Editor {Completed 4.0]

+345 votes
asked Dec 30, 2015 in Hardware Integration / Remote Control by Funkybot (18,640 points)

The old forum had many requests for a dedicated drum editor so I'm adding it here with a link to the old thread and some highlights below:

From that thread:

1. Real hit marks (either triangles or diamonds, or selectable). Also a much easier way to name each line item without having to go into another edit screen to accomplish that. Let's not forget color definable for easy viewing. [EDITORIAL COMMENT: My vote is for a flag shape (or sideways triangle) with the vertical part facing left so you know exactly where the hit starts, diamonds are tough to see.]

2. It would also be quite nice to be able to perform rhythmic sequences within this edit window, so that different percussive or rhythmic grooves can be accomplished. Something on the order of multiple loop patterns above along the edit window's timeline. 

3. The ability to forward shift the cursor via loop points (which cannot be presently done). Also be able to select (drag in) user definable patterns (like lag or advance cymbals, or any relevant generic quick fixes related to drum styles. Similar something on the order of quantize, but with more of an emphasis on drumming styles (iterative, or drum specific, loose, tight, complex, simple, etc.).  

Another post in that thread:

  1. Please add import for the most common drum map formats (especially Steinberg's .drm is very common, there may be others) - drummaps are typically hard to find, way better to let users benefit from the existing collections than introduce yet another proprietary, fenced in format. 
  2. The format to save is way less important imho, although offering the main 3rd party formats would be a nice touch for sure.
  3. a real "drumstick" mode like e.g. in Cubase (i.e. a drum-centric, special set of context sensitive mouse actions & modifiers, so you can perform all basic tasks without switching tools)
  4. The ability to re-arrange lanes, so you can group the actually used ones together without wasting space with empty lanes.
  5. a few decent zoom steps also including the font size, does not have to be seemless, a choice from a few options would go a long way already, considering the current diversity of screen sizes and resolutions.

 And another:

... and while you're at it, why not change the note name font to something actually readable ?

And another...

A step sequencer for drums is something I would love.The best one I have used (for ease of use) is ReDrum in Reason.I hope Presonus have a step sequencer (notefx ) in the pipeline.I have tried the 3rd party one and they do not click with me.Geist by FXpansion is the direction I would like to see Impact go.

My own request:

Allow users to freely type whatever text they want directly into the PRV notes without needing to go through the extra step of creating a drum map. Though that request applies to everything in the PRV, it would be particularly helpful in a drum editor.

19 Answers

+14 votes
answered Dec 30, 2015 by niles (49,160 points)
My I add: Quantize per kit piece!?
+14 votes
answered Feb 29, 2016 by Daw Stew (740 points)
Having used the old Cubase Drum Editor I'd like to state that while it's good it could be improved.
Take a look at Expansion BFD3 GROOVE EDITOR page to see how much better that is over the Cubase model.
BFD3 allows you to simply paint in drum rudiments which would be a lot harder to program with the Cubase method.
It can do flams, paradiddles, ratamacues Swiss triplets and other rudiments that Drummers play
+13 votes
answered Mar 31, 2016 by infrasound (2,290 points)
Plus the ability to only show the note lanes where events are actually placed,

so that those empty lanes of the notes that havn't been played, aren't shown (via toggle button to show all note lanes again,

if one needs the others). Like the new function in Cubase 8.5
+10 votes
answered Jun 29, 2016 by spiral (530 points)
edited Jun 29, 2016 by spiral
In addition to the ability to re-arrange lanes, I would like to be able to collapse multiple lanes into a folder that shows all hits in a single lane, then expand it to edit the hits contained inside.

Most drummer VSTis give you 6 different ways to hit a snare, and 12 for the hi-hat.  But a snare is still a snare, and a hi-hat is still a hi-hat, no matter how you hit it.  So I would want to view all snare hits, regardless of articulation simply in a "snare" lane, which I could expand to edit, then close back up again. This would greatly help in being able to make sense of drum sequences. As is stands now, drum sequences just look like disorganized scattershot.
+8 votes
answered May 8, 2016 by richardgeorge1 (550 points)
edited May 8, 2016 by richardgeorge1
I'm totally with all of this.

I'd also really like to have Mute and Solo for each of the drum 'pitches' (buttons could sit beside the lane names).  This way we could solo an individual drum when working on complex parts and silence some drums to make it easier to concentrate on others.

Would be even better if these mutes and solos stick with the event, so you can then copy the event and have different drums playing.  This would make doing variations on drum parts really easy - like dropping to just the kick and hats in one event and then back to the full event on the next without having to actually edit the part.

I hate to mention a rival daw but Samplitude has a very well put together drum edit mode:     
+4 votes
answered Jan 15 by Blades (230 points)
I created a video tutorial several years ago.  There are a lot of great things about the Sonar Drum Maps, which would be directly related to the examples I've seen here.  Maybe a few more examples of some other useful items will help push this forward in Studio One.  A few of the items from my video that are important to me are:

1. As mentioned by others, notes represented by only triangles instead of the actual length of the notes.

2. Velocity shown in-line in some way, which helps to more directly show the dynamics of the recording.

3. Most importantly for ease of viewing and editing, limiting the notes shown to only those within the map - maybe as an option to hide non-mapped notes or something.

Please take a look at the video on this page for my reference on setting up the map and using it:

I have voted for this idea, hope my comments will be seen as useful, and I'm glad to see how near the top of the votes this feature is!
+3 votes
answered May 15, 2017 by musicmould (1,530 points)

Cubase has had it forever.

Really miss it in Studio One.
+3 votes
answered Jun 12, 2017 by rhondalyost (460 points)
Yes, a drum step editor would be much appreciated. It's the only feature I really, really miss in Studio One and I don't understand, why so many DAWs (Studio One, Logic, Pro Tools etc.) still don't include a usable drum editor.
+3 votes
answered Jan 5 by daniellesaux (1,680 points)
  1. The ability to re-arrange lanes, so you can group the actually used ones together without wasting space with empty lanes.
This +1,000!!!
+2 votes
answered Jun 24, 2017 by svenjeschke (400 points)
I love Studio One, but it definitely lacks an efficient, easy and visually clearly arranged way to program drums.

I will not make any suggestions like "just make a drum editor like Cubase", "(...) BFD3", "(...) Sequoia" etc., because I think PreSonus can (and hopefully will) come up with their own solution that complements Studio One's workflow.
+1 vote
answered May 21, 2016 by MarkyGoldstein (5,960 points)
edited Sep 2, 2016 by MarkyGoldstein
Yes! Redrum is a good example of how we could use patterns in DAWs. Unfortunately current VST standards are not there yet. We either need a new API or some extension. We have to go back to the drawing board for standards, if we want to fundamentally improve patterns and pattern machines in our DAWs.

909 style and hybrid drums (real drums, machine drums, digital drums) would be cool and hardware integration with wireless control, etc. That's so important, it might be worth a major upgrade itself. Drums is 73% of a good track.
+1 vote
answered Dec 13, 2016 by Michael1985 (6,310 points)

This wold be a handy solution for a drum editor! the micro editor is not perfect yet because of missing functions but the basic idea is good.

+1 vote
answered Dec 15, 2017 by dotcom12161984 (640 points)
I asked for this like 5 years ago lol.  I would also like the ability to be able to Have a folder that's just for drum samples that works hand and hand with the sampler.  Example:  With the MPC i have to load all the drums i want to possibly use and then i can scroll through them on a any given pad, but I want to be able to TAG (so the sounds stay in one place and don't create duplicates) my drum sounds so i can easily change/audition sounds that may sound better in the mix.  But i have maybe a million different drum samples, so if i'm producing an electronic song I want only to scroll through only my EDM, PUNCHY, HEAVY, KICKs, (THINK AKAI ADVANCE) so i can narrow it down and easily create drum kits on the fly and export them for later use or even sale.
+1 vote
answered Jan 4 by kuzeyyldrm (410 points)

Yes we absolutely need this. It's very handy for write drum tracks in DAW. (Like Cubase Drum Editor)

0 votes
answered Mar 17, 2016 by Michael1985 (6,310 points)
a probability trigger quantity would be also very useful to create some ghostnotes with the fix notes with random velocity in a definable range.

and it would be much better to create a drum editor like it is available in apples logic, because there you can see clearly all the data: lenght, velocity(editable on the fly), swing and more. if needed. It is the best drum editor available and better than these nothing saying shapes of Cubase...
0 votes
answered Mar 17, 2016 by chancekaye (3,090 points)
Definitely would need to include an easy way to freely edit velocities w/ the mouse w/ minimal use of key modifiers, that is flexible as far as covering multiple regions. (But please stay away from changing the cursor (and editing function) based on which pixels in the note the cursor is hovering over, as some other DAW's do. That will drive a man to drink.)
0 votes
answered Mar 2 by lutzvogelsang (690 points)
Though it is possible to import ',pitchlist'-files (drum maps) via drag & drop, one truly annoying matter about these maps is the fact that sometimes the notes needed are spread across a wide distance of midi numbers with empty spaces inbetween.

Sonar had a nice feature to just drag single drum sounds to a different midi notes in order to position the sounds of interest "closer together" which makes the visualisation of a "groove" much clearer.

Would be nice to have this in SO3.x
0 votes
answered Mar 25 by DrummaMan (1,480 points)

Editing MIDI drums is a challenge in Studio One Pro 3.5 compared to Cakewalk Sonar.

I finally figured out how to get a drum map displayed, but there is no easy way to select ALL of a particular drum, other than zoom way out and lasso them...
In Sonar, if you clicked on the drum map name on the left (or note name for keys or other instruments), it would select every instance of that note.

And contrary to the other poster, as you clicked on a note it would sound, and if you did a click/drag on a particular note as you slid it up and down, the other samples would sound, which made changing a note very intuitive!

Often times the snare drum velocities need increased - through the entire song.
We should be able to click on the snare name (or note) on the left column/keyboard of the editor to select every hit of that particular note.

Also -
Cakewalk's Sonar Platinum had Velocity Shading for MIDI notes, which really made it easy to spot a "soft" note and adjust it.

You could also zoom in a lot more for better/more accurate adjusting of each MIDI note with a Smart Tool.

Again - you could select ALL of the same MIDI note by clicking on the note on the keyboard to the left, which was a VERY handy feature for adjusting the velocity of the same note through the entire song!

Seeing that Cakewalk started off life as a MIDI-only editor, it's taking the rest of the DAW world to catch up, but from what I've seen, SOP will get there.

Thank you!

–2 votes
answered Feb 20 by georgelea (230 points)

I tried to read about 6 of these, and don't necessarily disagree with their wishes, but the biggest problem I had with Sonar's map that unfortunately will NEVER be revamped, was the inability to retain settings that I had using several different physical sound modules, as well as several different softsynths.  The problem was there was no way to save the settings if you happen to need temporarily delete a softsynth out of the rack. Then you lost all settings that the Drum Map was using NOT just for that synth, but all the other ones as well. The least you could do is provide a means of printing out of the setup once it's setup the way you like it so you can put it back together quickly.

The other huge problem was that you couldn't audition the sounds when you're trying to change them.  I had several other issues that I can't remember right now as it has been maybe 4 years since I seriously used it.