Superior Drummer 2.0
The Superior Drummer brand is back in a big way. There seems to be a new drum rompler touching down every week, but the public are becoming wary of this and, as such, developers are pulling their finger out. Remember over the last three months we’ve covered EastWest products like Gypsy, Fab Four and Voices of Passion, and how they’re all accessible through the same intuitive interface? Well, Superior Drummer 2.0 features a similarly brand-new, beautiful-looking, intuitive, expandable, graphical shell, through which S2.0 and other drum sample libraries from its developer can be accessed. It’s based on DFHS’s powerful EZdrummer application, but it’s more in depth. The other expansions for EZdrummer and Superior Drummer 2.0, called EZXs, are colourful, sound laden and highly desirable – looking like colourful sweet packets in your local corner shop – and called things like Vintage Rock, Latin Percussion, Claustrophobic, Twisted and Nashville.
Moving back to the main product at hand – Superior Drummer 2.0 – whilst it doesn’t have the most original name, looks the business, and these looks have substance to back them up. S2.0 is a complete overhaul of the original, but painstaking care has gone into preserving the quality of its sound, containing custom MIDI grooves played by none other than Nir Z who has released over 80 albums and took over Phil Collins’ spot in the band Genesis for a while. And guess what – Superior Drummer 2.0 has a whole bunch of inbuilt plug-ins to boot, with five inserts per channel. They’re cool and colourful, including a 5-band EQ, high and low pass, compressors, gates, transient designers and filters built by famed UK-based software developer Sonalksis. This gives the user layer upon layer of in-depth features to create a drum track with.
If you’re a serious drum nut, Superior Drummer 2.0 was designed to integrate smoothly with E-Drums (what used to be called V-Drums) – the virtual, rubberized drum pads that you bash with a stick to create sounds. With S2.0’s total bleed control, ADSR envelopes on every channel, stereo mix busses and individual outputs, you’ve got all that you need to take your show on stage, should you wish, or just thrash out natural-sounding drum loops on your computer. Think about it – you can even practice being the next Jon Bonham with headphones without your council evicting you. Back to the studio side of things, Superior Drummer is hardware controllable, for the tweaker in you. Its optimised loading times make this aspect a breeze, enabling the user to get a loop up and running quickly and painlessly. For dance music, you can edit your loop into a bit of a monster should you wish, if you feed it through a valve outboard compressor, or simply cook up live-sounding breaks with the aid of bit crushers and plug-ins for extra grit.
To sum up, they don’t call it Superior Drummer for nothing…
• Incredibly real-sounding drums
• Can program lifelike breaks via a real drum kit
• E-drum compatibility brings out the drummer in you
• Has additional expander packs for more sounds
• New plug-ins look cool and function great
• Not as good as Battery 3 for dance Musicman Zanier effects wouldn’t go amiss