$429 cdn for BB plus $69 cdn for footswitch plus 12%tax!! I just upgraded from Mini2 after a month. I’ve had a SR16 for 20 years and just wasn’t happy with the drumkits. The Beat Buddy patterns are useless. Useless. Whoever programmed the patterns(songs) had not a clue as to what would be useful to musicians. I think the drummer(s) were only trying to impress with their chops. The one press song idea is a joke, why not make an mp3 if you want a whole song and buy an app like Setlisthelper for $8 and you’ll have lyrics to go along with your track. The whole idea of a drum machine is to go from song part to song part at will. The mini had better song patterns too which was a total surprize. I DO NOT WANT TO IMPORT/EXPORT/BUY MORE BEATS. The Beat Buddy Mgr is totally confusing. Pretty expensive doorstop.
To each his own. I love my BeatBuddy.
Okay, take a breath, grab a coffee, and let’s talk, because I may be able to help a bit. It’s too bad you’re in BC (guessing based on your tax rate), so I can’t just meet you for that coffee to help sort you out (I’m in Ontario).
I felt the same way when I started with the BB (although not as strongly as you). I even made the statement that if my drummer overplayed fills as badly as the BB out of the box, I’d have fired him on the spot.
But then I started listening to what was really happening, and figured out that the biggest problem (if you’re using a PA with any real bass to them) is that the toms are badly overmixed and ungated, so they ring far too loudly and far too long. So, having a bit of studio and live engineering experience, I remixed the toms and adjusted a couple of levels on the other parts of the kit. The resulting kit alone has made a huge difference for me, especially for those pub gigs where no-one wants “arena-rock” drums.
Several people in this group have started using them, and they all seem pretty happy with the results.
Get the kit on DropBox, here:
You do still have to pick-and-choose your fills, because some of them are just not musical. You also need to keep in mind you will almost never play a full fill: Most are a full bar long, and, in real life, no-one plays a four-beat fill most of the time; and fills start when you call them, which is seldom at the beginning of the fill as programmed. But the not-overmixed toms makes a huge difference.
Pro-tip: Any fill that includes “Half-bar” in the name are almost always useable. That’s not a coincidence.
Next, I have a small (by this group’s standards) repertoire of about 175 tunes in live rotation, and less than five of them are standard beats from the Beat Buddy, because I want the drummer to play THE parts, not parts that are LIKE THE parts. Programming is a must for me, because making it effortless on stage requires effort off-stage.
And yes, the BBM is cludgy, but we make it work. For me personally, the BBM is only for organizing songs and sets (and occasionally editing drum kits). Editing parts requires something a bit more purpose-built.
There is a customer-penned MIDI editor included by Singular these days as a courtesy, but it’s not a Singular product – they simply bowed to pressure from this group to include it. If you’re going to do any serious MIDI editing (and you’re going to want to do some MIDI editing if you’re going to be truly happy) you’re going to need an editing suite. I personally use Reaper, because it feels natural to me and it’s free to start and cheap to keep, but there are other options. I also use an old Roland Octapad to play some of the parts in as well.
On the topic of one-press songs (“OPs”), that’s a bit of a holy war around here: Some people think they are absolutely useless, others think parts-playing is completely stupid. I use both, although I much prefer to drive the drums through their paces live, so OPs make up less than 5% of my repertoire. Where I find OPs useful is when I am particularly busy during the song, or if I’m looking for a relatively low-cost quick-hit for a song we’re only going to play once or twice (e.g., a wedding or private party request). I’ve been known to download free MIDIs to adapt them to the BB in those cases. They’re not my favorite way to use the BB, but they absoultely have their place – even for someone like me who MUCH prefers to control the drummer.
In the end, the beauty of the BB is that it’s “good enough” out of the box if “good enough” is enough for you (and it is for lots of people), but it can be spectacular if you treat it like an instrument (rather than a tool) that you have to learn and master to get the most out of it. For me, building most songs are a 4-8 hour iterative process to get them absolutely right, because I’m REALLY(!!) anal about the drummer playing what I want him to play. And, to be fair, some of that is programming it to run my stage lights, but it’s not a quick process either way. But that effort looks cheap when I weigh that against paying a drummer for 50+ shows a year – not to mention having one more bandmate’s schedule to manage when booking gigs.
So it’s worth it to me, but it might not be to you. But then, you don’t have to be as particular as me (your audience largely won’t care); you have to find that effort/reward balance.
I suggest you start with the tamed drum kit from my DropBox, and let me know if that helps.
Finally, this is a very lively, active group, and lots of people on here will be willing to help you if you have specific things going on. Leverage that asset, they are invaluable.
BB is great, takes a little bit of work with the over cooked fills but the main beats are fine, plenty of variety and this forum has a lot of extra beats, fills and kits for free.
For the crazy fills just swap them out with more basic ones, that’s easy to do in the manager.
Kit levels may vary in volume so maybe pick one kit like Joe provided and work from there.
Don’t like the one press songs? Don’t use them? I only use a couple of them as I don’t like the locked in/backing track vibe but the ones I use sound pretty cool.
The pedal itself is really great, everything you need is in this forum from guides to kits plus the song lists in the forum are a great way to get a set going.
I am using Beat Buddy since june 2016. I am still using and enjoying. Yes, it has a learning curve, but it is a great machine.
It’s just so frustrating. BBM crashes and closes. I tried importing some Groove Monkey songs and they were not good either, the basic beat groove starts and ends with a fill. This is a nightmare and driving me crazy.
Hi @warped, thank you for the feedback. Singular Sound is sad to hear that you are unhappy with your purchase. We did want to let you know that all of the BeatBuddy MINI 2’s beats are included in the BeatBuddy. And–the BeatBuddy has higher sound quality, more default beats to choose from, and the ability to add 3 million more songs (whether yours, or anything else). So if you at all liked your BeatBuddy Mini, the BeatBuddy only gives you more reasons to love it. We also just completely revamped the default content, and the upgrade is FREE!
I do agree that on press play is only for special occasions. 99% of the time, the best thing about the BeatBuddy is the ability to control the beat, not just play a song entirely through. We actually only built that feature because people on the forum kept on requesting it! If you have any other feature requests, let us know, and we can work on those, too. The same goes for beats – we add new beats every month and we read the forum closely to see what people want.
As for your trouble with the BeatBuddy Manager, we are also sorry to hear that you are having difficulties. Please feel free to email email@example.com if you ever have any technical issues.
You might ask @BeatBuddy_Support for some personalized help to get you over the turbulence you’re experiencing.
Definitely talk to Support about this, but I haven’t had any real stability problems. That would be frustrating. Can you tell us more about your system and what is happening when it crashes ?
I’m using Win10. Where is the Beatbuddy Mini’s basic Ballad 1?
Mini or mini 2.
I had the Mini 2. Only for a month and I only tried it out as the store had to order the pedal for me. I upgraded because saving presets was not an option on the Mini. Thought I should upgrade while the store would allow me to. If all the beats from the Mini 2 are in the full-blown Beatbuddy, where are the ballad songs? The only song I found useful was the Ballad 1, for country sounds. I need the side-stick snare. The Blues song choices are real bad, way too busy.
So, how About that @SingularSound? Can you give us a list that shows where the Mini 2 songs are on the full BB?
I’m not Singular Sound but this is what they are on the Oct 18 Default Content Backup card
Recommend @warped download Goran’s latest and follow the instructions to install either the contents from the link he provided or better yet, go to https://library.mybeatbuddy.com/software-download/ and download BeatBuddy Default Content v2.0 and use that instead.
Here’s what’s on the v2.0 update:
the reason I upgraded to the full Bb is because of the claim that you could use beats and patterns from EZ drummer/Reaper, which I own. Last night I watched a tutorial video on tweaking in Reaper so that the files will play in BB. Holey Moley, that is way over my head. I like to spend time playing and learning my instruments, not become a programmer.
UPDATE!! I downloaded V2.0 and its 100x better. I haven’t checked out the fills yet buy the kits and beats are great. I might have to figure out some editing on the fills but at least I’ve got something for when our drummer doesn’t show up. She’s a great drummer, don’t want to replace her but it is nice to have a backup plan especially since some of the players drive a long distance to come every week.
Hi almost totally agree with you. The canned beats are only good in a pinch if you have nothing else… but they do work. The fills are completely ridiculous… the last quarter of the measure is okay, but if you press for a full measure… you better joke with your crowd!
I bought the BB based on what it could do… meaning that you could have different beats for different parts of songs which was different than any drum machine I’d owned up to that point. I knew absolutely nothing about MIDI or how to use it, but once I got my head around it, it’s actually fairly easy to navigate. It still takes me about 3 solid hours to create a beat for songs, but I’m way too OCD and a bit of a perfectionist, so I try to make the beat sound exactly like the original. I find that the more it mimics the original song, the more I get into the music when I play. The problem I have now is that I don’t share anything in the forum like I used to. I used to upload all my work, then they lost everything due to server crash or something… no backups (???I know right!!!) and now everybody is creating One Press Beats (OPB) which I think completely negates the whole point of the pedal, so yes I agree with you… I don’t know why people want the OPB… may as well play an MP3. Anyhow, short story long… the pedal has completely transformed my sound, but it’s due to the hours I put in programming my beats. The drawback is that I don’t actually learn songs anymore because I’m always reading my notations to help me navigate the drum beats. I find it worth it though when you see people dancing their asses off to a guitar and a drum pedal. Hang in there… if you stick with it (and don’t rely on the premium content… it sucks for what they’re charging for it)… I think you’ll like it! I’m willing to help you out if you want… except I’m not on here much anymore, I’ve been discouraged by the lack of care and attention to what users would like, loss of our content and absolutely no progress on the manager (which by the way… the built-in midi editor is TERRIBLE… don’t use it, it will only drive you nuts!!). But they do send completely ridiculous, useless, story telling emails… so yeah, maybe that’s a plus??? (insert eye roll here). Best of luck… honestly, it’s not a waste of money if you take the time to work it.
Well, I only spent a few minutes with the V2 upgrade and now on delving further all I really notice is the Ballad songs added. The Jazz drumkit is hilarious, no one would use that. I can’t understand why there isn’t a simple sidestick beat for country tunes. The ballad songs on the mini are not the same as V2. There is not a freaking chance that I will be spending 4+ hrs developing a beat, I bought the BeatBuddy so I would not have to do that.