BeatBuddy as a drum module

New here. First post. I’m scared. Please be kind!

I am considering a BeatBuddy. My use case is probably somewhat odd. I want to use it as a sound module for my e-drum set consisting of some pads (mostly Yamaha things) and a Megadrum trigger to MIDI converter.

What I really want is something like a Superior Drummer 3 in a sweet standalone hardware module. I want a really versatile MIDI implementation. The Megadrum can be setup to do just about anything with triggers, so all I need is something that can make good sense of that MIDI data.

Would the BeatBuddy be my buddy? Does it support multiple stages of the hihat pedal (pressing the pedal lightly to hard)? Does it support drum choking (note off, basically, for silencing a sound)? Does it have velocity layered samples, or is velocity just amplitude control of a single sample? Is the BeatBuddy the closest I can get to a standalone Superior Drummer 3 in a box?

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When the Beat Buddy is used as a sound module, it is dependent upon the drum kit that is loaded into its memory for such things as samples available, velocity sensitivity, etc. You are limited to 100mb of samples in a kit, but you do have access to all 128 midi locations to which samples can be assigned. A single instrument within a kit can have up to 15 samples, which can be split into various velocity ranges. Choke groups can be set up with groups of instruments.

You should download the BB Manager software and the default content for the BB, and you can try things out on the virtual pedal within BB Manager. You can also see how kits are constructed, and you can download user-made kits.

The 100mb limit will likely keep you from being able or replicate a full Superior Drummer kit in the BB. But, you can surely build a very robust kit to match the number of drum triggers you have available. (I am assuming you don’t have 60 or more triggers.)

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Thanks! Very helpful!

My Megadrum does support 30 or so triggers, but I just use about 10. :slight_smile: I don’t think 100 MB is too severe of a limitation, if I can cherrypick samples myself. It that a hardware memory limit or something that can change with a firmware update?

Can I use the choke group feature to damp a sound without playing a new? For instance, if I hit a cymbal then grab it with my hand, it will by default send a note off. The expected behavior is the sound to be quickly silenced. If note off is not supported, perhaps I can set the Megadrum to send a note which I map to a silent instrument and put them in to the same choke group somehow…

I’m a little worried about the hihat pedal. It supports, I think 6 or 7 levels ranging from closed to semi-opened to fully opened. I don’t remember if it sends all levels as a different note, or if it sends a CC with level info… Perhaps it can be mapped how I like it. There are tons of parameters in Megadrum. :slight_smile:

Anyway, I will try the BB Manager to see what I can achieve. Does the virtual pedal support MIDI in, so I can try it for real with my e-drums?

You can cherry pick samples when building a BB instrument. You need samples that are 44.1khz 16 bit wav files. The samples should be free of meta data. The 100mb limit is a hardware memory limit in the BB.

Note offs - BB instruments are constructed with the terminology “Percussion” or “Non-Percussion.” In reality what these terms mean are "Ignore note off, but choke if a subsequent note is played, " and “Obey note offs.” So, if a grab sends a “note off,” and the cymbal is set to “non-percussion,” it may work as you desire. I’ve never tried this.

Hi-hat articulations - This is generally where there is a divergence between a superior drummer kit and a BB kit. I have some mappings of EZ Drummer kits that have 14 different hit hat articulations. In one kit, they have the following:

hats trig
hats Tip Trig
Closed Pedal
Open 1
Open 3
Closed Tip
Open Pedal
Open 2
Open 4
Tight Tip
Seq Hard
Seq Soft

In a typical BB kit, you’ll have open and closed and maybe pedal. You could certainly build a kit and assign a midi number to any other articulation, but the open ones will take up space. The longer the note tail, the bigger the wav file. Cymbals and toms are space hogs.

Unfortunately the virtual pedal does not support midi. If it did, I don’t think Singular would sell very many pedals.

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Thanks! This is giving me a good feeling for the things I am concerned about. However, I’m happy there are no software limitations (from what I hear) that stops me from setting it up like I want. The 100 MB limit is of course there, but you can always tweak around to find a sweet spot.

Worst fear is if I buy a BB today, in 15 days there will be a MK2 with 1 GB memory instead. :slight_smile:

Anyway, I guess it’s a good idea to play around with the BB Manager to see how much a properly configured hihat would use. Should the hihat alone consume 90 MB, then it’s obviously a no-go, but if I get a decent enough hihat in 25 MB, I guess I can make a full kit in 100.

Whatever… This thing looks too cool to be ignored. Ordered one. :slight_smile:

We use BB for percussion and additional instruments to add a bigger sound to our duo. Some songs have there own drum kits and are rogue as far as midi mapping is concerned. But it works for us. Simple and effective.

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Cool! I received mine today. Will be fun to play around and see if we make a pair.

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@johey, how is it working out for you? I also recently picked up a used one to use as a drum module. It sounds better than other drum modules because of velocity layering and round robins, but it’s a pain to create your own drum kits using BBManager. The software is need of an update.

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I don’t find it a pain at all. Just need a bit of patience.

I’m a patient man, but not a masochist. :wink: