Blog

Welcome to
the Red Pack Drums

DS Drum RCS Essentials Walkthrough

Updated: Mar 4

The most versatile drum library for your DAW



 

Table of Content

  • Intro - DS Drum

  • Dashboard

  • ​Drum selection screen

  • Snare selection screen

  • Cymbals screen

  • Groove page

  • Mixer page

  • EQ page

  • FX page

  • Midi assignment page


DS Drum

Our first ever release is going to be from custom builders in the always sunny and warm south of Europe! DS Drum from Italy. Italy?

Don’t these people only build beautiful cars, cook great food and design the best clothes in the world you ask? Which my answer would be, yes the do!

Italiaans are know for their eye for details and their great taste of aesthetics.

So that they build great sounding and looking drums would be obvious right? DS Drum is founded more then 25 years ago by Luca Deorsola and their main focus has always been hand build, custom designed (by their users) Drum kits, and there Rebel Custom shop is still going full speed ahead!

But DS drum released this year new drum series where you just have to sell only the one kidney or even one series where no body parts have to be sold. So that’s great news for the people how are just starting out drumming or always wanted to own an Italian stallion without breaking the bank! :)

So if your in the market for a acoustic drum kit, definitely check out their website, I’ll put a link in the description. But the next step in taking the drum world by storm was to create extensive and easy to use sample libraries, and that’s why they teamed up with us!


So without further ado I present you the DS Drum - Rebel Custom Shop Essentials


This is a virtual drum sample library, sampled with much depth and realism, so you can recreate the DS Drum sound on your electronic drum kit or for your own productions. This library contains a whopping 30 gig of 80.000 drum samples of Italy’s finest! So lets dive in!




The Dashboard


The whole idea about our dashboard is to get a drum groove going and getting the drums sound you’re looking for in 2 clicks.


Jut select a presets here in the top left corner, give Kontakt the time to load all the samples en just hit the big play button in the middle! It’s that easy! If this is not the sound you’re looking for, hit stop, select another preset and repeat until you found the one you like. You can even fine tune the hit strength of your virtual drummer in a box down here with this slider. We made up to 40 presets, but with these drums, and mix capabilities of our mixer which, I will go through shortly, it could easily have been a kazzilion presets, but we thought lets give our users some room to show us their sound scaping creativity! So we would love to hear presets that you guys are going to make and post them on our Facebook community page or send them to info@redpackdrums.com and we’ll pick a winner who will get a DS library for free! There are some beautiful artist kits planned to be created for next year!


The winner will be announced on our Facebook community group on the 1ste of February 2022, this way we can give people some time to play with all the possibilities of our mixer, because it’s pretty extensive :)

Please check the Kontakt manual how to save your own presets and where you can find the snapshot files on your hard drive. I’ll leave a link to the manual in the description

So lets jump on to the drum selection screen


Drum selection


On the drum selection screen you can select the 3 kits we recorded on the right side menu, on the left side menu the 3 different kick drum beaters. And these will give a nuanced sound difference in the attack of the bas drum hits, you can audition them by clicking here on the play buttons next to the beater names. If you’re looking for more low end and some lighter bas drum hits select the wool beater, or are you looking for hard hits with a ton of attack then pick the wooden one, and the Felt is the more balanced one of the 3. Here on the right side you can select the 3 different tunings we recorded for the kits, I’ve been using drum sample libraries myself for a long time and I never really liked the digital tune possibilities of drum libraries, so now… when we started to build our own library the first thing I said was, lets record the drums in multiple tunings, so when you want to detune the drums you don’t have to rely on digital pitch shifting, and that turned out really cool!


So what we did here, and this is going to get a bit drum nerdy, is that tuning 1 is for all 3 kits the same, this way the wood difference of the kits would really be the main focus of the sound difference. And you can really hear that the Mahogany kit has more low end en the maple kits project more and ore more attacky than their mahogany counter part.

But tuning 2 and 3 are for all 3 kits different, and not only in pitch we also changed the balance of the top and bottom heads to change the tuning. Something you could never do with a digital tuner! So we tuned the Maple spruce kit up and tuned the bottom head higher then the top one, so that results in a shorter tone, and with the maple koto we went down in pitch, and a did one tuning where we raised the bottom head, and one tuning where we lowered the bottom head in relation to the top head. For the Mahogany kit we kept max resonance so that means the top and bottom head are tuned exactly the same!


Also, when you click on the DS logo on each shell you can interchange any drum part you want, so if you like a Mahogany floor and a Spruce Kick drum, Koto rack toms this is all possible in these dropdown menus.

Here you can also see the resonant head tunings, where it says Reso same, the top and bottom heads are tuned the same, where it says Reso higher the bottom head is tuned higher and where its say Reso lower… yes, obvious right? The note to which the drum is tuned is also displayed here, so you can really Taylor each drum sound to your own specs and tuning :) But to put the cherry on top of this beautiful drum cake, we also added a digital tuner for each drum to really fine tune the pitch, to for example, the key of your song, or to go crazy with the different sound possibilities. But more on that later!


Lets jump over to the Snare selection screen


Snare Selection


We’d setup the snare selection in a similar way as the drum selection screen, we recorded 10 snare drums for this library, 3 of the Mother Nature series, and that’s DS unique woods series, great characterfull sounds from these guys, 4 Metal series snares, if you need a more brighter snare drum with a metal character to it, and the rebel custom shop snares that came with the custom drums of the main screen. My all time favorite is the Mahogany, but don’t tell Luca that I have a favorite, they’re like his kids, so he loves them all right ;) But I find for metal mixes I do for clients I often go for the 14x6 Steel because it has a ton of attack to it and that works great for that kind of music style. But the mahogany just sounds so warm and full to my ears, its just like and angel singing me to sleep. Aaaaahhh…. Anyway.. you can audition all of them by hitting the play button next to their names, you can change the actual tuning with the tuner down here, just like on the drum screen and the audition sounds will change accordingly, And again, these are actual recorded tunings so no fake digital tunings here! All the real deal! And when you found your snare character and tuning, you can tell Kontakt to load all the actual samples by clicking the snare names.


The hit strength slider is also accessible from this screen so when you change a snare sound you can tweak the global hit strength from here aswel


Cymbal screen



On the cymbal selection screen you have 6 cymbals at the same time to your disposal, a splash…. Crash on the left, hi hat, ride, crash to the right and a china. For all spots we have a second cymbal, and these are really different sounding cymbals so we could cover a lot of musical styles. And on this page we used the same setup for selection, auditioning and hit strength fine tweaking. So nobody can get confused about navigating all the possibilities of this virtual drum machine.


Groove page


Here on the groove page you can find the DS artist grooves for inspiration, select one, hit play to play along with your guitar, or look for some inspiration for your own song, you can drag and drop the one you like to your daw and build from there. You can tweak the notes however you like. And its also a good way to learn how to program your own drums by analyzing how drummers actually play the drums and which articulations they use and where the use them, so your own drum programming will sound much more realistically. Just a side note, if you use Kontakt stand alone all the grooves will be played at 120 bpm and if you have Kontakt opened as a plug in in your daw, it will match the beats per minute of your D A W. You can see the intended bpm of the drum grooves in their titels

Could be, that some of your personal grooves or one of the thousands other great midi packs out there, don’t sound how they should with our midi configuration but if you sit this one out I’ll explain how to solve this on the midi map page without having to rewrite all the midi parts. Adding midi packs to this page is as easy as copying the folder to your MIDIfiles folder on your harddrive, and when you restart Kontakt they are all here in the midi packs column.


So clicking here we will go over to the mixer


Mixer