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Expanding TD20: Downloading programs vs Using VST Samples on Laptop

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  • Expanding TD20: Downloading programs vs Using VST Samples on Laptop

    Hi guys, I'm pretty tired of the factory kits on the TD-20 and I'd like to know my options OTHER THAN buying a TD-30.
    I have Addictive Drums 2, BFD3 and Superior Drummer 2 on my desktop PC...and I do have a powerful laptop I could potentially connect to the TD-20.
    What's the best way of "upgrading" or "expanding" the TD-20 - hooking up the laptop to the TD-20 to play these samples? Or can I download custom drum kits that I can load directly into the TD-20? What are the pros/cons of each? Suggestions and recommendations? Any helpful links would be appreciated as well!

  • #2
    Welcome,
    AFAIK you can't load anything into the Roland modules, though I think there are some expansion packs available. Someone else will have chime in with that info.The other option with the laptop will give much better sounds but, obviously, you'll need the laptop there all the time. You'll need an audio interface as well.

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    • #3
      VEX packs, from www.vexpressionsltd.com are new drum kits that you can download, and will certainly freshen up your sound palette. Highly recommended, even if they fall short of the sonic fidelity of your VST samples.
      TD9+6v with Diamond Electronic pads, and cowbell.
      ATH-50m headphones, VEX packs
      not to mention keyboards, guitars, basses, and cats

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      • #4
        I can vouch for the VEX pack option, it took my TD30 from "that's ok" to "wow" - and that's not just my opinion but every musician I've played with since I've had the kit. They've all expressed amazement at how great my TD30 sounds and often mentioned "I didn't know how far e-kits have come in recent years".

        Note that the VEX Packs are a collection of settings/configurations, they're not new sounds. In fact given the time/experience you could tweak your kits to sound the same. But at about $1/kit they are a fasttrack to better sounding kits out of the module (and cheaper then the next two options).

        If you want to move to hardware based samples, you could look at a sampling solution such as the Roland SPD-SX (or similar).

        Third is the VST solution. There's an endless supply of "VST on laptop will give much better sounds" style comments on these forums and whilst you can't deny that professional sampled high end kits tuned to perfection sound amazing, for every well sampled VST kit, there are just as many sampled kits that sound like a kids electronic drum kit you buy in a toy shop. VSTs also introduce other pre-requisites like high performance audio interfaces to keep latency down and suitably tuned and performing laptops to produce the sounds from the samples etc.

        Each of the above solutions has pros/cons, practicalities and purposes. I suggest reading up to see what works for you and your purposes.

        At the end of the day, I quite often ask: "Is the average punter listening to our music going to be able to pick the difference between the above options (on sound quality alone) when the drums are mixed-in with the rest of the band?"
        Last edited by campster; 07-09-14, 11:16 PM.


        Roland TD-30KV, Pearl Demon Drive Double Pedal, Pearl H1000 hit hat stand, Shure SE530 IEMs, AKG K171 MKII Headphones, Mackie DLM PA, Yamaha MG102C mixer, Roland Studio Capture

        Natal Walnut kit (US Fusion X), Bosphorus Antique 16" Crash & 22" Ride, Bosphorus Gold Series 14" hats.

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