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Scarbee Imperial Drums Now Available in Kontakt Format

Scarbee Imperial Drums Now Available in Kontakt Format


June 20, 2004

Reprogrammed from scratch, Scarbee Imperial Drums in Kontakt format (version 1.5.3 and DFD extention are required) makes use of most peculiarities of the Native Instruments sampling engine.

Now every tom drum has its separate output allowing the end user for a more precise control of such drums in the mix; no 'weird' output configuartion format was chosen to allow Kontakt users to continue using other libraries with the factory-set 8 mono and 4 stereo default outs. Following a 'modular' approach with the complex instruments in S.I.D. like the hi-hat and snare drum allows the end user to customize those RAM-hog drums to fit the production needs.

S.I.D. in Kontakt format is also a free update for registered HALion 2 version users.

Recorded in 24bit/88kHz resolution (downsampled to 44.1 Khz for release), Scarbee Imperial Drums captures the dynamic range of every drum, providing nearly 30,000 individual drum samples on 3 DVDs. These DVDs represent the distillation of over 1 terabyte of recordings.

As with all other Scarbee offerings to date, rather than offering a 'grab bag' of many instruments, S.I.D. focuses the combined energies of the entire production team on a single DW drum set and Paiste cymbals, with two additional snares and an alternate DW bass drum.

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The aim of the S.I.D. project was to put sample users in the 'engineer's seat'. To do this, Scarbee recorded each drum from multiple microphone positions, including close, overhead and ambient perspectives, with some drums recorded from multiple close perspectives. S.I.D even provides 'bleed' samples which capture the resonance of the rest of the kit as a drum is hit. These different mic perspectives are presented in a 'virtual multitrack' format within the sampler, allowing the user to pick and choose which mics he wants to use on a particular drum, how much ambience he needs, how much bleed will be useful etc. Then, it's mix time.

A single key might feature over 420 bass drum samples in 75 velocity layers; one of the snare drums gives the user access to over 2200 snare hits in over 130 velocity layers through a combination of one key and the modulation wheel; and there are over 3,000 samples – totalling almost 2 gigabytes of data – dedicated to the 14″ Hi Hat alone. This means more articulations to choose from and virtually seamless transitions through all degrees of playing force from the lightest to the most aggressive pounding. This abundance of velocity layers also means that sample users can finally say 'good riddance' to that bane of all drum programming – 'the machine gun effect' – the artifact which makes repeated hits of the same drum sound like a sampler rather than a live drummer playing.

S.I.D. caters for a wide range of playing styles, offering hits using standard wooden drum sticks, reversed sticks, several types of brush sticks, mallet drum sticks and even hands and fingers. There are a total of 59 'Emperor' Kit banks, 85 Emperor Single Drum programs, 1 GM mapped kit and 174 additional banks and programs. The Emperor kit is the 'grand daddy' of all S.I.D. kits, packing thousands of samples and bristling with detail.

Of course, Scarbee hasn't forgotten those with modest computer resources: S.I.D. also includes streamlined versions of the Emperor drums which, while retaining much of the character and detail of the Emperor, place less demand on memory and cpu.

Users can register their purchase on Scarbee's web site in order to take advantage of free updates, tutorials, programs and samples, and to be informed of further related releases in the Scarbee drum series.

System Requirements:
• Kontakt 1.53 or Halion 2, 12 GB free Hard Disc Space (7200 RPM), DVD Rom Drive. MIDI keyboard with sustain pedal.
• PC: Windows 2000/XP, Pentium 3/Athlon 1.0 Ghz, 1 GB RAM. Recommended: Pentium 4/Athlon 1.6 Ghz, 1.5 GB RAM.
• Mac: OS9 or higher, G4 800 Mhz, 1 GB RAM. Recommended: G4 1.25 Ghz, 1.5 GB RAM.

Scarbee Imperial Drums (Kontakt 1.5.3 and Halion 2) is shipping now on 3 DVD's for $369.00

For more information, visit their web site at

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David Mellor