The Drum Rocker

SabzavfcSabzavfc Unsigned
edited September 2011 in Rock Band
Hey,
Im thinking about upgrading my Rock Band 3 Pro kit to an Ion Drum Rocker and have a few questions,

1. Can i use my Rock Band 3 Pro cymbals with the Drum Rocker? as the Drum Rocker i was looking at only has 2 cymbals and i would like to add one of my Pro ones to it, is this possible?
2. Where can i buy a drum brain to convert the kit to a real kit and how much will the cheapest one cost me?
3. Is it worth the money upgrading from a Rock Band Pro kit?
Thanks :)

Comments

  • edited September 2011
    1) Nope

    2) eBay - DM5 modules are fairly popular among ION converts.

    3) Is it? Only YOU can decide that. Do you want a larger more versatile kit to play on or are you happy wit the stock setup?

    Lastly, if you think you want to turn an ION kit into a "real" e-kit with asperations of drumming outside the game then you may want to consider skipping the ION and loooking at entry level kits from Roland, Yamaha, Etc...

    ION's take a LOT of upgrading to get them up to entry level e-kit status and with that cash you may find you could have simply bought a used Roland or Yamaha kit.
  • SabzavfcSabzavfc Unsigned
    edited September 2011
    thanks for the reply, what exactly does the drum brain do then?
  • edited September 2011
    Sabzavfc;4499718 said:
    thanks for the reply, what exactly does the drum brain do then?
    It will allow you to make drum sounds with the ION's triggers. (PADS & Cymbals)

    With e-kits, the quality of the triggers, the quality of the sounds and the versatility of the brain modules ranges from start at crappy and work there way up to amazing. You for sure get what you pay for.

    I know plenty of people who have invested more in an ION conversion than they would have just buying an entry level e-kit.

    In the past, it was a little more difficult to get an e-kit working with Rock Band but now, with the plug and play, PRO MODE ready Midi Pro Adapter, its so easy that I have to laugh when I look at the pile of wires, midi relays and hacked drums kits I used to use back in the before time.

    It really comes down to what you want to do it the long run. If a real e-kit is what you want, there is no need to own an ION drum rocker brain IMO.

    If you just want a cool drum controller, the ION is a good choice but I would suggest bailing on the ION cymbals, they are the weak link. Go with Pintech. Search the forums and the forum in my sig for plenty of ION upgrade info.

    I will give you one final warning...

    E-Drums, e-drumming and the building, tweaking and upgrading of an e-kit can get a bit.. well.. addicting... and the sky is litterally the limit... so if you do get into it and you feel Gear Acquisition Syndrome kicking in... dont wory, you are not alone. :)
  • webjonwebjon Unsigned
    edited September 2011
    As someone who just went through the upgrading process I'd agree that you should definitely consider an e-kit first.

    Ultimately I had to upgrade to a pro trigger because I was getting cross talk on RB3 that was caused by two different ION brains (this is a known issue). Definitely research ION crosstalk issues with ps3 before buying an ION kit.
  • mec_osmec_os Opening Act
    edited September 2011
    when i was looking for drums i started with cheapest and when i kept adding up the things i would eventually want it just got really expensive so i found a used Roland TD4 for 450 and i'm so happy i went that route. so far i haven't felt an urge to upgrade anything. i guess i could use the ability to program the open/close hh separately.
  • meck77meck77 Road Warrior
    edited September 2011
    Doc_SoCal;4499673 said:


    ION's take a LOT of upgrading to get them up to entry level e-kit status and with that cash you may find you could have simply bought a used Roland or Yamaha kit.

    This^^ I spent a boatload getting mine upgraded, hell the mesh heads alone ran me 168 each(thanks to davidshek) and I bet there more like 225 now. Double bass with kickpad around 300 and thats pretty cheap(had coupons from guitar center and the pedal was on sale). Three Roland cymbals 80 each at the time, now they are 110-130 each. cymbal stands required they are 50 each. you get most of this with a stock yamaha or roland kit. hope this helps

    As for the experience it was worth every penny to upgrade I LOVE my kit and would never go back to the RB kits.
  • HombreSecretoHombreSecreto Unsigned
    edited September 2011
    I've already been through a Drum Rocker (3-cymbal, useless w/2) and what was missing most was a realistic hi-hat experience, plus the surface of my snare got chewed up after a while. ION never released the Pro version (correct?) with a hat pedal (a la Roland TD-4 or Yamaha DTXplorer), so I moved up to a DTXplorer (was going to do this anyway) and gave the Drum Rocker to the kids.

    If PS3 then recommend the ByteArts MIDI Rocker so you can map all your pads (esp the hi-hat) to the correct game equivalents. Otherwise you need a "module" between the brain and MIDI Pro Adapter to alt-map the open hat to the blue cymbal. (Welcome to the dark side of the forums!)

    Gotta warn you, though, I'm one of Doc's Gear Acquisition Syndrome cautionary tales...so many songs would be easier with a second left-side crash...wow that extra rack on eBay would really stabilize the frame and give extra arms for positioning cymbals...really need to uprgrade my kick pedal now to a chain, or maybe a double...just doesn't feel right without the RHH135 hey look that's pretty reasonable...I'm really doing myself a disservice if I don't upgrade to the nitro throne...boy that mesh snare is really a bargain...ya know with a step drill and some grommets could route all the cables internally...

    All kidding aside, get the pneumatic nitro throne...
  • mec_osmec_os Opening Act
    edited September 2011
    i thought of routing all the cables inside the frame... i hate cables.
  • SabzavfcSabzavfc Unsigned
    edited September 2011
    So, the ION Drum Rocker isnt the only e-kit that can work with Rock Band? (i must have missed this :P) cause, mainly im after an electronic drum kit that i can also use with Rock Band
  • whypick1whypick1 Headliner
    edited September 2011
    Electronic drum kit + brain with MIDI out (and preferably with re-mappable MIDI assignments) + Rock Band MIDI Pro Adapter = *****in' Rock Band drum controller.
  • FujiSkunkFujiSkunk Headliner
    edited September 2011
    Sabzavfc;4499985 said:
    So, the ION Drum Rocker isnt the only e-kit that can work with Rock Band? (i must have missed this :P)
    Short answer: Correct. The MIDI Pro Adapter makes just about any e-kit compatible. Note I said "just about," so some research is required to play it safe.

    Long answer: The Ion Drum Rocker was never literally the only e-kit to work with Rock Band; it just used to be the only officially supported e-kit to work with Rock Band. People took things like the Drum Rocker brain/game-controller, or the Guitar Hero: World Tour controller with its built-in MIDI input port, sometimes mixed in a whole lot of custom hardware, and came up with a lot of different ways that real e-kits could be played in the game. But the Pro Adapter has made all that unnecessary. Even the Ion Drum Rocker itself is somewhat redundant now, which is why Ion hasn't been too gung-ho about selling them since RB3's release.
  • SabzavfcSabzavfc Unsigned
    edited September 2011
    FujiSkunk;4500005 said:
    Short answer: Correct. The MIDI Pro Adapter makes just about any e-kit compatible. Note I said "just about," so some research is required to play it safe.

    Long answer: The Ion Drum Rocker was never literally the only e-kit to work with Rock Band; it just used to be the only officially supported e-kit to work with Rock Band. People took things like the Drum Rocker brain/game-controller, or the Guitar Hero: World Tour controller with its built-in MIDI input port, sometimes mixed in a whole lot of custom hardware, and came up with a lot of different ways that real e-kits could be played in the game. But the Pro Adapter has made all that unnecessary. Even the Ion Drum Rocker itself is somewhat redundant now, which is why Ion hasn't been too gung-ho about selling them since RB3's release.

    Ah, thanks :D thats great news then! ill go down the e-kit and Midi controller route then, is there any relativley cheap e-kits anybody can reccomend me for this? thanks again for all the answers
  • davidshekdavidshek Community Playtester
    edited September 2011
    Sabzavfc;4500013 said:
    Ah, thanks :D thats great news then! ill go down the e-kit and Midi controller route then, is there any relativley cheap e-kits anybody can reccomend me for this? thanks again for all the answers

    If you don't mind buying a used kit (and you shouldn't...e-drums are pretty durable things), look at your local Craigslist and try to find a used Roland TD-3 or TD-4. Or really any Roland kit, except for their entry-level HD-1. On the Yamaha side, there's the DTXplorer and DTXpress. All of the ones I listed will work with the MIDI Pro adapter.
  • SeattleSauveSeattleSauve Rising Star
    edited September 2011
    Get an idea of how much you're willing to spend up front. I started thinking I wanted a TD3 set, then I tried the TD4s, then I tried the all-mesh TD9s, etc... and I ended up spending like 3k on my kit. I mean, I LOVE my kit, but this stuff is a slippery slope, so just be aware of that :)

    To be clear, I sold my IONs which had all 3 cymbals incluing a pintech one for about as much as a good seat costs... So things do start adding up.

    Now, playing rock band on a solid e-Kit is such a huge difference from the RB kits, so you will not regret it at all, as long as you don't end up going bankrupt.
  • SabzavfcSabzavfc Unsigned
    edited September 2011
    Thanks for all the help guys :)
  • drumshroomdrumshroom Opening Act
    edited September 2011
    the dtxplorer would be a great entry kit and since it has been replaced by the dtx500, there should be some good buys out there.

    if you are buying new, consider the dtx500. upgraded version of the dtxplorer brain with some great new features, and it does support open/closed hi-hat in rb3 (along with more inputs/more voices/support for the new pads/etc)
  • SabzavfcSabzavfc Unsigned
    edited September 2011
    Hey guys, after all your advice i think im going to go ahead and get this kit http://www.guitarguitar.co.uk/digital-drums/detail.asp?stock=10121613363712
    Just before i do though, this will be compatible with Rock Band right? And am i better off buying the Dd505 instead? Thanks again guys :)
  • HombreSecretoHombreSecreto Unsigned
    edited September 2011
    You really should demo a kit before you buy.

    You really need to understand the hi-hat problem in RB3 Pro Drums before you buy. Everyone here will help. Reply back with what you know about it to continue discussion or ask Doc to point you to the best (of many) historical threads that explain the issue.

    That said, to use in Rock Band, the drum module must produce the MIDI notes the MIDI Pro Adapter (or other adapter) expects. See page 11 of the DD402 manual (http://sessionprodd402.co.uk/session_pro_dd402.pdf) for the DD402 MIDI table, then page 5 of the MIDI Pro Adapter manual (http://www.madcatz.com/UsersGuides/RockBand/RB3_97071_MUG.pdf; PS3 but MIDI map same for all consoles) for the expected values, which appear to be compatible (minus the hi-hat problem).

    The good news is the DD402 brain appears to let you reconfigure the MIDI notes for each pad, which is unusual for an entry-level kit. This factors into RB3 game play (the hi-hat problem) because you'll want to reassign the hi-hat open note to something the MIDI Pro Adapter expects to activate a blue cymbal. This avoids the use of an additional "module" to translate the open hat note.

    Otherwise, Welcome to the Family! You won't regret the upgrade.
  • HombreSecretoHombreSecreto Unsigned
    edited September 2011
    Some concerns about the DD402 kit (and the DD505), though...

    1) The only DD402 stock crash and ride cymbal positions on the DD402 are on the tops of the side posts. You may find this extremely restrictive (hence demo first). This can be easily remedied by the simple acquisition of standard 1 1/2" clamps, cymbal arms, etc...like I said, Welcome to the Family!

    2) The descriptions provided in the DD402 manual suggest the brain is not expandable to add a second crash (or other trigger). Using a left side crash can be counterintuitive (a left-side ride even more so) if you've started from the basic rock band kit orientation. The DD505 has much more flexibility for cymbal placement.

    3) If the DD402 pad construction suggests a Yamaha- or Simmons-like surface and rebound, then the DD505 looks exactly like a repackaged ION (Alesis made) but with a brain instead of the game control module like the Drum Rocker. As I said previously, I chewed up my ION snare pad relatively quickly, but my original Yamaha pad (and now ddrum mesh snare) show barely any signs of wear. See Doc's forums (docsrockbandmods.net) for endless ION pad upgrade ideas. The DD505 rack also seemingly lacks the stability of the DD402.
  • HombreSecretoHombreSecreto Unsigned
    edited September 2011
    okay, last thing....

    From your product description URL it appears you are in the United Kingdom. That may be why the Session Pro brand looks like repackaged kits found in America, so the brain conforms to UK power & interference standards. I'm not sure how that limits your shipping options, or how insanely expensive international shipping might be, just make sure you can get your hands on a MIDI Pro Adapter, too. Amazon UK has each console adapter in stock ( http://www.amazon.co.uk/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?field-keywords=midi+pro+adapter ) at this time.

    The forums are peppered with complaints about purchasing gear internationally. I suggest searching them for tips recommending obtainable gear in your area.
  • SabzavfcSabzavfc Unsigned
    edited September 2011
    Oh wow, thanks for all the great advice!
    I know nothing about this hi hat problem, can you explain it to me please? And how do i re-map the midi notes? And will i have to do this at all? Thanks a lot :)
  • FujiSkunkFujiSkunk Headliner
    edited September 2011
    Sabzavfc;4505114 said:
    I know nothing about this hi hat problem, can you explain it to me please?
    The hi-hat "problem" is that the Rock Band series does not require the use of a hi-hat pedal, so the game does not officially distinguish between "closed" hi-hat notes and "open" hi-hat notes. However, the charts of some songs actually do map the two types differently. For the stock controller and for single-pedal kits like the Drum Rocker, this requires you to hit different cymbals depending on the note: the yellow cymbal for closed hi-hats, and the blue cymbal for open hi-hats. For e-kits that have the capability, you can instead program your hi-hat to send both yellow cymbal notes and blue cymbal notes, depending on whether the hi-hat pedal is up or down.
    And how do i re-map the midi notes?
    That will depend on your new e-kit's brain. Read The Fine Manual. :)
    And will i have to do this at all?
    If you want to use your hi-hat pedal like how I described above, yes. If you're a left-hander, yes. Otherwise, maybe. The MIDI Pro Adapter accepts several different MIDI ID's for each pad and cymbal, so there is a half-decent chance your e-kit will work out of the box.

    Be warned that configuring an e-kit to play Rock Band potentially involves more than just making sure the right MIDI notes are being sent. There can be cross-talk (you hit one drum and another drum registers) and sensitivity issues (hitting a drum doesn't register at all, or registers multiple hits), which the drum brain should have controls to compensate for. It can take a while to find the sweet spot (took me a couple of weeks to get everything perfect), but I think it's worth it.
  • SabzavfcSabzavfc Unsigned
    edited September 2011
    Thanks :) so, how do i re map my kit to be able to play like that?
  • FujiSkunkFujiSkunk Headliner
    edited September 2011
    Sabzavfc;4505209 said:
    Thanks :) so, how do i re map my kit to be able to play like that?

    That will depend on your new kit's brain. For kits that are MIDI programmable, somewhere the brain will have a list of all MIDI events the kit is capable of generating, and the note IDs used for each event. The trick then will be making sure open hi-hat and closed hi-hat events are mapped to the right IDs for yellow and blue cymbals.

    Hopefully this will make more sense once you have your kit and have had a chance to look at the brain's controls. Again, the manual will be your friend, but if you get stuck, ask here. There may also be another forum dedicated to that manufacturer where you can find help.
  • dTorC4dTorC4 Unsigned
    edited September 2011
    As one who has also spent an inordinant amount of money on a "video game controller", let me say that, if you have the patience, save up some more money and get the best kit you can affor from the start.

    Looking at the kit you have, I can almost promise you that, by this time next year, you will have bought at least two mesh head pads (pintech, roland, etc), and probably other little bits. Just a couple of mesh heads will run you, retail, over $200 each. So, if you can just save up a couple hundred more pounds, you can save yourself money in the long run.

    Just my $0.02.
  • SabzavfcSabzavfc Unsigned
    edited September 2011
    Thanks for all the help guys, helped loads, i should be able to get my kit sorted now thanks :)
Sign In or Register to comment.