Ultimate Drums Processing Plugins


What kind of plugin did you use for processing the kicks or polishing? (Multiband, transient shaper, what kind of single band processors or eq? what synth did you use or did you marry other sampled kicks?)

i love programming kicks by myself but struggle with these initial klick or hit that really hits hard and wich you can see in the audio waveform. i analysed/sampled some electro kicks - they all have that hard knocking initial hit…

thanks very much!


The clicks are from loads of different sampled Analog and Sampled based hardware

TR808, 909, Some Old Boss stuff… Alesis SR 16 etc.

I made an absolute tone of clicks and knocks for the start and processed them using Apple Soundtrack pro which has a brilliant batch converter so you can just get a chain of FX you like and run Hundreds of files through it.

All the booms originated in ANA… we measured the Waveform Cycles of loads of different kicks from various tracks to get an idea of the type of slopes that where being used and created a ton of those with sine waves and ANAs Genv (used the presets that are there for jumping off points). Lots of A/Bing too

The booms had very slight processing… a bit of Waves Rbass sometimes a bit of EQ (mostly removing 200-400hz)

Then we made hundreds of variations with different booms and clicks saved them all then went in and picked all the best or the ones that closely matched the tracks we liked.

After that i went in and messed with the clicks on a individual sample level just to get the attacks sounding nice and clicky… did some selective normalization as well on the clicks just to bring out certain stuff.

Some of the kicks have a bit of Short Filtered plate reverb in them to give them a bit more of a 3d effect.

at the final stage, did you use limiters or maximizers to get that extra bit of loudness/strength?

not really… maybe on the clicks but not the booms… thing is you cant really get a pure sinewave any louder without distorting it slightly and turning it into a kind of pulse.

What we did a lot of work on was the decay curves. and what freqs where more prominent. If you look at the boom part of the wave where you can see the cycles of the waves, each cycle is a certain Freq from say 1k Hz down to 60Hz… the tighter together they are the higher the frew etc.

so if you go into the sample editor and adjust the level of the individual cycles you are controlling the Freq response of the boom.

Thats why you will notice on the skrillexy kicks in Dubstep that there is a kind of scoop near the start. this gives the kick a freq dip in the 500k area.

With regards to decay curves… very little adjustment can make a big differnce to how the kick will sit so have a look at some kicks in an editor and measure the how many samples there are at various points to teh end of the kick.

most where around 12000-15000 samples long

The other thing is there is no way i could have done this type of editing on lesser speakers… My BM15s have large 10" cones so you hear right down to 20-30k… even on the mackies with 8" cones it would be very hard to really tell what you are doing down there.

Ok, because of my small rokit5 speakers and untreated room situation i usually do all the critical listening/mixing stuff with my akg 702 headphones. a pretty clear, defined and honest sound quality i find.

a good headphone system: enough to treat the very low freqs on a pro level too? whats your opinion?

you wont be getting a true reflection of whats going on… thats not to say you cant do some useful work but you will have to guess whats going on or rely on visual tools.

Even with my setup im thinking of adding a sub just to get even lower.

Its weird like even the difference between the mackies and BM15 i can hear many more layers of difference in the bass and sub areas.

The mackies just kind of lump everything below 250 together where as with the BM15s i can hear differences in 200 100 50 etc.

Like in some tracks e.g. Kelly Rowland Work (Freemasons Remix) on my mackies the kicks, live bass and Subs all sounded in the same area. On The BM15s they have very distinct layers of depth that are totally separate.