Electronic drum kit

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Michael Willis
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Electronic drum kit

Post by Michael Willis »

The kids are showing interest in learning how to play percussion. They asked if we can get an electronic drum kit because they tried one at the music store and thought it was great fun. You can probably guess that they won't need to use much pressure for me to consider actually buying a kit. :lol:

Of course it is non-negotiable that it needs to connect to my Linux machine as a midi device without any compatibility problems. I want use stuff like AVL drums or Drum Gizmo, and eventually try live recording in Ardour.

What recommendations can people give me?
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Re: Electronic drum kit

Post by tavasti »

I am not specialist, but what I have understood, cheaper ones don't have velocity levels, so all hits are constant level.
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Re: Electronic drum kit

Post by j_e_f_f_g »

The kids would probably be better off with something like a Korg Nanopad than an entire kit of electronic drumpads. It would be a lot easier on your wallet, they'd likely have just as much fun with it, and it would be easier to play with just their small fingers. (No drumstick needed), It's standard USB-MIDI so no problem working with Linux (ALSA's built-in USB-MIDI driver), right out of the box.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=45o6HOGnTJ4
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Re: Electronic drum kit

Post by milo »

My neighbor has one. Can't remember what make or model. I can go over and plug it in to my laptop and see what its midi output looks like. It's fun to play, but feels very different from an acoustic kit.
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Re: Electronic drum kit

Post by milo »

Finally got back to this, although you may have already moved on. But I'll document here for anyone else who has the same question. I went over to the neighbor's house after work today and plugged his set into my laptop (Linux Mint 20). The kit is a Yamaha DTX series. The hardware controller on the kit has a USB output and was recognized as a midi input device instantly on my system. I plugged it in to LMMS and it could record notes, including velocity values. Here's a couple of screenshots:
Screenshot_2021-03-31_19-22-29.png
Screenshot_2021-03-31_19-24-33.png
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Re: Electronic drum kit

Post by alexson »

I think electronic drum kit are the best option for kids to learn the tactics of a drum.
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Re: Electronic drum kit

Post by Michael Willis »

I ended up buying the Alesis Nitro Kit. It is one of the more affordable kits on the market with mesh heads.

According to the review linked above, the disadvantages are "Sounds aren’t the greatest" and "No loading custom sounds or samples". Both of which are easily addressed by using it as a midi controller and routing the signal to DrumGizmo or AVL Drums. That's what I wanted in the first place, so the kit's samples don't matter to me.

I'm going to try to use the kit to record percussion for my current music project.
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Re: Electronic drum kit

Post by j_e_f_f_g »

Hey kids, am I not a great dad? I bought you that toy i've been wanting.... uh... you've been wanting to play with. Let's not tell mommy, ok? But if she finds out, remember, it's for your education.
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Re: Electronic drum kit

Post by Fmajor7add9 »

alexson wrote: Fri Apr 02, 2021 6:17 am I think electronic drum kit are the best option for kids to learn the tactics of a drum.
totally agree, and considering how costly decent kits are and how many years it takes to develop a decent feel e-kits are a no-brainer
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Re: Electronic drum kit

Post by Fmajor7add9 »

Michael Willis wrote: Fri Apr 02, 2021 3:30 pm I ended up buying the Alesis Nitro Kit. It is one of the more affordable kits on the market with mesh heads.

According to the review linked above, the disadvantages are "Sounds aren’t the greatest" and "No loading custom sounds or samples". Both of which are easily addressed by using it as a midi controller and routing the signal to DrumGizmo or AVL Drums. That's what I wanted in the first place, so the kit's samples don't matter to me.

I'm going to try to use the kit to record percussion for my current music project.
OT:
I always check for certain models of Rock Guitar Hero something video games hardware in the thrift stores. Some of them are velocity sensitive and have MIDI outputs (guitars as well).

There's also some table-top models that makes practical sense where pedals can be attached. I've experimented with taping up 2-3 keyboard keys togethere with cardboard to sort of resemble 5-6 pads.

Re. sound mapping, when I played the odd church bum-chick-bumbum-chick drum way back when I put the cross stick sound on one of the toms.

Wishing you and the kids loads of fun and tight beats for years to come.
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