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Old 12-30-2011, 10:29 AM
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cneal92 cneal92 is offline
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Lubbock, TX USA
Posts: 530
Default Re: Superior drummer or Steven slate drums

I've got all 3 (SD, AD, & SSD4), and yes I definitely have a bad case of GAS, and have since the late 80's. You'd think maybe I would be smart enough to see a doctor.

I have had SD the longest (since it was DFH). I have all the SDX packs (except the new sticks/brushes--so maybe my GAS is not too bad). SD is my favorite of the 3. I have always loved that I could print the drums and have them in the mix in the format that I would have recorded them in the first place (the individual mics). Although, to be fair I have only had AD and SSD3.5 (and just a couple days ago v4) for a short time now.

AD: by far the smallest of the 3 at just over 1GB for the basic (no ADpacks). The AD packs are generally small too (from 300-600mb), which is similar to the EZx packs. It does include a decent set of MIDI files if that is your thing (not really mine) and in my opinion (based on numbers) is the best of the three. They are easy to use. Not as "tweak-able" as the SD grooves, but much easier to use. I've always hated the SD implementation. I like how you can easily drag them (SD) to the host, but have never liked the EZDrummer approach. I have never printed tracks out of AD, but I was just looking at the capabilities and it is by far the easiest to turn on and make work and turn off. Very nice and easy, but again not as "tweak-able" as SD. I like how you can setup and adjust the kit and it's sounds, but again, if you're a tweakhead (like me) then SD still wins.

SSD4: I have the least experience with this and I obviously need to read the manual. I too watched the video and it seemed easy to adjust (and maybe it is--the whole manual thing), but my first experience was a bit frustrating. I used it to add some K & S augment tracks. I loaded a kit and then was attempting to switch some of the sounds. I did what I thought he was doing in the demo to add/change sounds, but I ended up adding/changing a different kit piece then I though I was working with. In frustration, I ended up "creating" new kit pieces rather than adjusting the ones that were in the kit. This was fairly straight forward to load and assign MIDI notes, etc. Regarding the print of the drums, it was very similar to the SD approach (set and output for each piece, pan if necessary, set a track's input to that plug-ins out). SSD4 does not have the tweak-ability of SD in that you have access to the separate mics to edit in the plug-in (like AD & SD) or to output like in SD. You just load a kit piece and it is assigned to a channel in the mixer and then you can set the output of that channel (mono or stereo outs are available). You can add buses to the mixer, but it appears they can only be used to group tracks together (multiple Kicks, Toms, etc) for a single output, which wouldn't be much different from assigning them all to the same out, as I don't see how you can apply any processing to the bus. There are not built in effects (reverb, dist, comps, EQ, etc). Minimal bleed control, just setting the bleed into the OH and Room, not the amazing bleed control of SD. The basic set of kit piece controls (vol, pan, tune, Attack/Sus/Rel). The included MIDI grooves are minimal, but seem pretty straight forward to use.

Update SSD4: just looked through the Quick Start guide and changing kit pieces is as easy as it should be, obviously I just wasn't doing it right.
Chris Neal :: South Plains College
.: Program Coordinator & Asst. Professor in Sound Technology
.: Pro Tools Certified Instructor
.: Pro Tools Expert Certified in Music
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