Thursday, November 25, 2010

AREX 2011 Has Been Updated!

Over a month ago, I posted about a new Yamaha RX11 VSTi being created by an ambitious programmer named Alex. Having a physical copy of the machine, I served as "technical advisor" to Alex, as he worked out the bugs, but ironically got the model of the drum machine wrong in my post... so much for being a very good technical advisor!

As you may remember, the VST was created in Synthedit and is a very faithful digital recreation of one of my beloved, old eBay conquests. It looks great and sounds terrific, and as I frequently like to say here on Reason Patch A Day, provides an interesting alternative to the "usual" 80s drum machines that we all sample and use in our projects.

Alex was nice enough to let me know that he recently made an update of his APEX 2011 VSTi available, so I wanted to let everyone here know that the new version is available for download. Check it out at:

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Reason Patch A Day Archive Refill, Vol 1: The Two Year Anniversary Edition

Almost a month ago, an important anniversary passed here on Reason Patch A Day without notice or comment. On September 25th, the Reason Patch A Day blog turned two years old.

I've said it before, but putting up a patch every day with a few missed days here or there, especially lately, takes a lot more work than I originally expected. Designing a new patch isn't so bad, nor is writing a blog post, but doing them both seems to take a great deal of effort. Maybe it's that jarring switch between right brain and left brain thinking, or maybe it's just the amount of time that those tasks take when combined, but while some of the posts come easily, some seem to kick and scream their way into the world. Thank you for joining me in this sometimes painful, sometimes joyful, process.

To celebrate this belated anniversary, I decided to do one final update of the Reason Patch A Day Archive Refill. As you may remember the first version of the refill was posted back in March of this year, only to be updated a few months later in June, as a way to thank everyone who supported it.

As I have already said in previous posts, my goal in putting together the Reason Patch A Day Archive Refill was not to provide an endless series of updates. So, this is the last time you'll see me posting about a upgraded version of it. Any other Archive Refills released here on Reason Patch A Day will likely be titled Volume 2 or 3.

The updated Reason Patch A Day Archive Refill, Vol 1 contains over 1,100 files, including:

  • 100 Bass Patches
  • 31 Instrument Combinators
  • 60 Effect Combinators
  • 18 Effect Patches
  • 197 Pad Patches
  • 155 Percussion Patches
  • 142 Synth Patches
  • 14 Sampler Patches
  • 5 Yamaha Drum Machine Kits (with additional variations)
  • Misc Samples and Loops
  • And a couple of other surprises....

Thank you to everyone who has helped make the site a success by visiting it daily. And, thank you especially to those of you who provided financial donations and patches to support what I've been doing for the last two years. I'm not sure I can express how much I appreciate your donations.

As before, I urge you to go back and check out the Reader Contribution patches, which are not included in the Refill. Reason Patch A Day has hosted some excellent work from readers (and sometimes fellow bloggers) DJ Mad Wax, Ruurd Huizenga, Lewis.72, Rob Anselmi, Ghostly, Dan Reneer, Darryl Miller, Navi Retlav, and Meowsqueak, and I think you'll enjoy their contributions as much as I have. So, check them out!

Thanks again!

Monday, October 11, 2010

Yamaha RX15 VSTi Available: AREX 2011

I've been pretty vocal about my interest, some would say love, of the old 80s and 90s era Yamaha drum machines. I picked up a RX15 on eBay on a lark and have since collected several others, including the RX11, RX17, RX120, and DD5.

They're not as straight-forward to program as the Roland machines and provide static samples, as opposed to synthetic sounds that you can manipulate, so their usability is more limited than the quintessential TR-808 and TR-909s, but they also have a fairly unique sound. And, if you're as cheap as I am, the idea that you could get a couple of crates of them for every Roland machine you could afford is pretty appealing as well.

If you've been even modestly intrigued by the Yamaha machines, or have enjoying the many samples I've posted from them, you have an interesting option available to you. Several months ago, I got an email from a nice fellow named Alex, who wanted to build a RX15 VST using Synthedit. After exchanging a few questions and answers about the machines, his efforts are done and now available online for download.

So, if you want to play with a fairly accurate representation of the RX15, now is your chance. It can be found at:

I can't provide any tech support for Alex's new instrument. I only helped by providing samples and a little advice, but I know that he's worked pretty hard to try to emulate the machine's many idiosyncrasies. Unfortunately, the VSTi is Windows only, so I haven't been able to play with it myself, but thanks for your hard word Alex!

If you've missed the samples I've posted in the past (and were used to create Alex's instrument), you can find them here:

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Any Denver-area Reason Users?

Fellow Denver Reason user and blogger DJ Mad Wax and I attended the Robert Henke/Monolake concert last night at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science. It was a neat evening with intriguing sounds provided by Robert Henke and visuals provided by a local "space doctor," as he was called, running the planetarium controls (if anyone can provide me with his name, please do, I'd like to credit the fine work he did).

The event was heavily attended by visual arts and music students from DU and CU, as well as a huge collection of folks from the local Ableton Live Users Group, so the crowd definitely skewed towards "geeky." In a lot of ways, I think the make-up of the crowd added another layer to the evening, as many folks were interested in the experience as well as the methods.

This got me thinking back to an older "project" of mine that I dreamed up around the same time I started this blog and that's forming a local Reason Users Group. It might be nice to meet up from time to time, grab a cup of coffee or a beer, swap some ideas, and if we're lucky, inspire each other a little. Any readers from Reason Patch A Day interested in joining the Rocky Mountain Reason Users Group? Let me know in the comments or via email at patchaday (at) earthlink (dot) net.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Reason 101's Generations Refill

Have you taken a look at the new Generations Refill provided over on Reason 101? If you haven't, you should definitely check it out.

I'm usually the first person to be skeptical about new refills. Refills, like this site if I'm going to be completely honest, are a collection of sounds and ideas that suit someone else's music or someone else's ideas. Refills are generally instrument patches and effects that fit someone else's notion of what is clever or what sounds good, and so even when I find one I like, I usually only find a few patches that are useful to me among hundreds of patches that I would rather not be bothered with or required to sift through. So, what makes the Generations Refill different?

Do you remember how you felt when you finally understood how Reason worked and how flexible it was? You realized that the cabling wasn't the gimmick so many people claimed it was and the various devices suddenly made sense. You understood that within Reason, you were only limited by your own creativity. Well, the Generations Refill is a lot like that, but in place of Reason's existing devices and Factory Sound Bank provided samples and Combinators, Rob at Reason 101 has provided a series of Combinators that are meant to be used in the same way that Reason's devices are intended to be used, cabled together in clever ways, to achieve intriguing and sometimes surprising sonic results.

I should explain that a bit more. Rather than provide you with, say, a UN-16 Unison that can be used in a variety of ways, the Generations Refill provides Combinators that fill those same roles, routed with other Combinators saved within song files, so that you're essentially given Combinators filled with other Combinators, resulting in routing and effect options that go far beyond what is usually provided in a refill.

Interestingly, this isn't a one size fits all proposition. The Generations Refill provides a number of setups that will be immediately useful to you. In addition, it provides many useful instrument patches and effect Combinators, allowing you to build your own setups and processing, by creating new routing with tools he has provided. Basically, the Generations Refill is a massive toy box and comes with permission to play.

I've been lucky enough to have seen "sneak previews" of this refill as Rob has built it and I've been impressed and intrigued by his approach. Seeing it as a complete package is even more impressive. While many refills provide you with basic sounds and ideas, the Generations Refill provides you with tools, powerful ones. Simply put, the Generations Refill will be useful to Reason experts and newbies alike and I really can't say enough good things about it. Well done, Rob!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Please Take A Minute To Vote Over At City of Bass

Friend of the site, DJ Mad Wax, has a blog of his own where he posts some of his occasional music-related and Reason-related insights, as well as some really great music through his Vocode Project label. You may have already checked out City of Bass, but if you have a spare moment, please jump over and vote in DJ Mad Wax's latest poll. He's looking for some feedback on what the future of Vocode Project might be and he could use your help. Click here to vote.

Also be sure to check out some of the bass patches DJ Mad Wax provided in the site's early days:

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Reason Patch A Day Archive Refill, Vol 1 Updated!

Just over three months ago, I released the "Reason Patch A Day Archive Refill, Vol 1" which collected patches posted here between September 25, 2008 to March 6, 2010. It was made available to anyone who supported the site with either a financial donation or anyone who had contributed their own patches to the site to be shared with their fellow readers.

It was an experiment more than a means to raise any serious money and I'll admit the results have been surprising. I was essentially asking you to pay for something I've already given you for free here on the site, but many of you stepped up and sent in donations anyway. Rob's wonderful video review of the refill over on Reason 101 has brought in a few new donors in the past few weeks and so I would have to say that despite my predictions, the PAD refill has been a moderate success. Thank you everyone who has contributed in some way towards this site's growth for almost two years. Your donations, whether in form of patches for financial contributions, are sincerely appreciated.

My goal when I first put together the refill was not to keep endlessly updating it. It's called "Vol 1" for a reason, as I intended to eventually release a Volume 2, maybe a Volume 3, and so on, but I wanted to thank everyone who has donated to the site at least one more time. So, I have expanded the PAD refill to include patches posted between March 6th and today.

The updated "Reason Patch A Day Archive Refill, Vol 1" contains over 1,000 files, including:

  • 74 Bass Patches
  • 28 Instrument Combinators
  • 52 Effect Combinators
  • 16 Effect Patches
  • 180 Pad Patches
  • 136 Percussion Patches
  • 131 Synth Patches
  • 12 Sampler Patches
  • 5 Yamaha Drum Machine Kits (with additional variations)
  • Misc Samples

As before, the refill does not contain any of the reader contribution patches that have been posted here. That's not to say they're not amazing patches, worthy of inclusion, because many of them are, but I do feel a little uncomfortable adding them to the refill without permission. I urge you to dig back through the posts here and check out the amazing contributions made by DJ Mad Wax, Ruurd Huizenga, Lewis.72,
Ghostly, Dan Reneer, Darryl Miller, Navi Retlav, Meowsqueak, and Rob Anselmi. All submitted patches are listed with the post tag "Reader Contribution" so they should be easy to find.

Thanks again to anyone who has donated to the site. Your contributions have been appreciated more than you know.

Filter Research 2 Refill Sneak Peek From Lewis.72

I just got an email from Lewis.72 over at Resonate Filter who let me know he posted a video showing off some of his contributions to the new Filter Research 2 refill from Nucleus Soundlab. Lewis has been kind enough to share some of his creations here on Patch A Day, and if you've liked those creations as much as I have, you'll no doubt enjoy this peek at what he's been up to lately. Check it out.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Reason 5 Announcement... Updates

Have you been checking in with the Propellerhead website to see what else is coming for Reason?

I'm not a Reason apologist, nor am I a frothing fanboy. I see the warts in Propellerhead software just as well and as easily as other people, but given that I have a blog dedicated to posting new Reason patches, obviously I've found enough things in the software that appeal to me and make sense for my workflow. That isn't to say that I think Reason or Record are the end-all, be-all software solutions for making music. If I felt that way, I wouldn't spend so much time with Logic, Renoise, or the strange collection of hardware and noise-makers I've amassed. However, even after admitting that I see Reason's warts and that I do use other software, when I have some free time on my hands and a desire to make music, I usually reach for Reason.

Why? Well, Reason was my first software tool. I got Logic shortly after I wrapped my brain around Reason, but as intrigued as I was with Logic's possibilities, there was something about Reason that made sense to me. I liked getting my hands dirty, even if only virtually, by messing with routing and I liked the fact that for every limitation I found, there was usually a handful of creative solutions or workarounds if I just looked hard enough. That tinkering, experimental spirit has stayed with Reason from the first version I loaded onto my computer up through version 4, and I think what has me most excited about what we've seen about version 5, is that none of that has changed. Reason, to me, seems to reward creativity. Its software that dares you to be clever and then rewards you when you are.

I don't usually use loops, so Dr. OctoRex isn't very appealing. Blocks? The video on the Propellerhead website says that musicians think in terms of intro, chorus, and fill, but I don't. It's a neat way to arrange things, but again, doesn't look that appealing to me. Neptune? Now we're talking. I don't record vocals, rarely use more than a few spoken word samples, but like other very specific instruments or effects in Reason, such as the BV512 Digital Vocoder and the Redrum Drum Computer, I suspect there will be aspects about Neptune that make it something more than it first appears to be. Using that same spirit of creativity and experimentation, Neptune could be a game changing addition to Record.

So, what about today's announcement explaining that all of Reason's samplers are now... samplers? It seems pretty obvious. It's been talked about and suggested since Reason 1, if my memory serves me, so its a change that makes a lot of sense. Do I support this change? Absolutely. I'd say "it's about time," but the truth is, Propellerheads have always done things by their own timetable, and the users are usually rewarded for their patience.

There's still one more announcement to be made and so it looks like some of my predictions earlier in the week are looking less and less likely. I don't think we'll see a grid sequencer. If you've signed up for the beta, you saw that multi-core support is coming. Also, the brief shots of the screen seem to show a Record-ized sequencer, so those predictions, which weren't exactly going out on a limb, look like they're accurate. Tomorrow? I think tomorrow will be a new instrument, but we'll see... in less than 24 hours.

Given what we've already seen, I have to say my enthusiasm for Reason 5 is building. No individual addition has me drooling into my computer keyboard, but taken as a whole, I think 5 is going to be a nice upgrade. There's still time for that drool-inducing announcement. Tomorrow might be it. But, it looks like Propellerheads are going to continue to allow for and reward creativity. No matter how many new gadgets we get and features get rolled into the software, that core of experimentation remains. That's probably what has me the most excited.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Reason 5 Is Coming!

It seems that I am forever behind the curve on these sorts of announcements, but if you haven't already seen the videos and pages, Propellerhead Software have finally announced Reason 5 and an upgrade to Record, announcing version 1.5. The announcement is coming in daily releases and started yesterday with a short video introducing the new Dr. Octo Rex loop player. No word if all of Reasons other new modules will be named after Spider-Man villains, but I am hopeful we'll see the Green Gobverb, Mysteremixer, and a Vulturemetrix EQ in the next few days.

Okay, okay, jokes aside, I think we'll see a handful of new devices, like the Dr. Octo Rex. I think the odds are good that we'll see a new synth, but it's just as likely we won't. It's hard to think of anything that Thor doesn't already cover, except for maybe a physical modeling synth, a la Logic's Sculpture.

If you're a fan of Record's arrangement and editing tools, which I certainly am, I suspect you'll see those tweaks and enhancements making their way over to Reason (which I predicted back in October). Some of those tweaks that Reason users should be excited about are the "Explode" option, the ability to easily move notes between clips, a virtual keyboard, and a number of other tiny tweaks that add up to a better, faster experience. I think multi-core support is almost a given, which for many of us, will make Reason easier to use. As I said, Record is our roadmap toward where Reason is going, and given the time I've spent with Record, I think we're in for some nice, tasty treats.

One aspect of Reason that usually gets overlooked is its hardware integration and stability for playing live. I think using Reason as a live instrument is pretty high on the programmer's priority list, so I suspect we'll see additional upgrades in using Reason in a live setting. Will we see new Reason-specific hardware, a la Live's Launchpad and APC40? I don't know. They may have worked something out, like they did with Line6 in Record, but given how hot grid controllers have been the last year or two, it wouldn't surprise me if we saw a new kind of Matrix device.

I don't know. I'm not much for reading tea leaves or gazing into crystal balls. I will say that Reason 4 didn't initially impress me and it took a few months of use before I grew to appreciate all of the little tweaks that made it such a powerful tool. I don't think I was alone in that experience, so I predict that Propellerheads have been busy creating additions that will really surprise us and make Reason seem as innovative and intriguing as it has always been. Only time will tell.

I'll probably post updates, but they'll be slow coming, so if you're dying for news about the latest version of Reason, you should probably check in with the Propellerheads website and get details from them directly.

Friday, May 14, 2010

.480 Using The Yamaha DD-5 As A MIDI Controller In Reason

This post will probably help exactly none of you, but if any of you are experimenting with incorporating older MIDI gear into your setups, the process might at least be interesting.

As you might remember, a week ago I posted samples from my "new" Yamaha Digital Drums DD-5, explaining that while its built-in sounds may have a fun, cheesy vibe to them, what truly makes the DD-5 intriguing is setting it up to be used as a MIDI controller in Reason/Record. What I didn't get into was that its default MIDI output data is, in a word, strange. Its four pads output to A1, E2, A2, and D#3, making it the very opposite of "plug and play."

There are a couple of things you can do to change this. The first, and most obvious, is to use Reason's "Remote Override Edit Mode" which is what I experimented with to get it working in Redrum. It doesn't take much time and the results are what you would expect, giving you the "hit-here-get-sound-there" effect that you're probably looking for. The problem is that once you have these maps set up, tying each drum pad on the DD-5 to its appropriate Redrum channel, you'll quickly learn that those remote overrides aren't saved as global settings in Reason, instead being settings just for that one song or project. You can work around that, of course, by setting up a Reason or Record song with these settings and saving it as a template file, which you would then load every time you want to use the DD-5 as an instrument controller in a song.

That is, unfortunately, not very practical. I rarely know what devices I'll be using when I start up a new song. Part of the fun in making music is working through that process, picking up gear and blowing the dust off, as you encounter the different needs and inspirations of your latest song. Needing to know which devices you will use, before you start, might not be practical.

The other issue is that your MIDI interface, which accepts the MIDI data from the DD-5 and makes it into something Reason can understand, might not be dedicated solely to your DD-5. As is the case with my own setup, the MIDI interface you use might be more "universal" and sees use with a variety of gear, so mapping the DD-5's drum pads to specific Note Numbers might make it useless for other MIDI gear that require default note assignments, if you unplug devices and plug in new ones, working through your song.

The second option to you is using the DD-5's controls to set its output Note Numbers to match what you need Reason to "hear." The process for this involves several button presses on the DD-5, sometimes done while turning the unit on, but how this is actually done is a mystery to me. The DD-5 Owner's Guide is surprisingly vague on the steps and since the unit doesn't have a screen to provide any kind of useful feedback, its literally a case of fumbling in the dark. Plus, any tweaks or changes you make are erased when the unit is powered off, requiring you to do this every time you use it. Again, not very practical.

So, what can you do? Well, the solution I finally decided upon, which might be useful to you in your own MIDI experiments, is using Reason's NN-XT to map samples to the specific notes being sent from the Yamaha DD-5 (or whatever piece of outdated gear you might be using).

If you open up the NN-XT's Remote Editor you'll see that the instrument contains four samples, each one mapped to either A1, E2, A2, or D#3, the MIDI Note Outputs of the DD-5. The specific samples and assignments match the four preset pad assignments that load into the DD-5 when you first power it on, but they can easily be replaced with whatever sounds you might want to trigger using the device's drum pads by selecting the appropriate sample and clicking "Load Sample" to assign a new sample. The mapping stays the same, but keep in mind that the Root resets to C3 whenever a new sample is loaded. You'll need to manually change this whenever you load a new sample if you want to keep its tone intact.

While this isn't quite "plug and play" its a bit faster than using the Remote Override Edit Mode, and if you take the time to set up a series of NN-XT patches with samples mapped to the appropriate pad assignments, you can achieve the kind of quick, flexible access you might need.

So, as I said at the beginning of this tutorial, this long-winded explanation of how I setup my DD-5 probably isn't useful for anyone out there. The odds that any one of you have a setup (or needs) identical to mine are fairly slim, but using Reason's NN-XT to accept specific MIDI notes, especially from old gear, might be a useful tool or technique for you.

A few random tidbits if you are one of the strange few using a DD-5 with Reason:

  1. The Yamaha DD-5 continues to make sound through its built-in speaker even while sending MIDI data. This can be hugely annoying, especially if you're using it to trigger sounds the DD-5 isn't making while you're playing it. Turning the volume on the DD-5 down doesn't work, because even at its lowest setting, the Yamaha machine continues to make noise. Just plug a 1/4 inch to 1/8 inch adapter into the DD-5's Audio Out and it'll stop making noise.
  2. As stated above, remember to adjust the Root note for each sample, if you load new sounds into the NN-XT patch provided. If you create a particular kit that you like, save it for quick access later.
  3. Also remember that you'll need to adjust the Amp Envelope's Release setting to account for samples that are longer in length than the NN-XT's default setting of only 60 ms. Forgetting to do this will create abbreviated sounds when you play them.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Challenge Remix: Ostbanhoff (Thielplatz Imbisstube Remix) and Breaching The Heliopause (Rutherform Appleton Remix)

1.44MB sent me his remixes yesterday to get them in on time, but unfortunately, I got too busy with family stuff to get them posted along with the rest of the remixes I received. As is usually the case, my inability to get them posted should in no way reflect on these remixes. They're awesome:

Ostbanhoff - colorcombination - 124bpm 1.44mbs Thielplatz Imbissstube Remix by 1.44mb

Breaching the Heliopause - 1.44mbs Rutherford Appleton Remix by 1.44mb

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Challenge Remix: Drones2 (80's Stallone Remix), by Hydlide

Not content with just providing two remixes to the second phase of the PAD Challenge, Chris Stallone also sent a remix of Hydlide's Drones2 track. This one is a lot of fun.

Drones2 (80's Stallone Remix), by Hydlide by Reason Patch A Day

Challenge Remix: 15728 Remixes, By Chris Stallone

I got these remix files from Chris Stallone last night. What Chris may be lacking in verbosity about his remixes, he's certainly not lacking in ambition. Here are two remixes of the track 15728 by Lewis.72:

15728 (Chris Stallone Remix), By Lewis.72 by Reason Patch A Day

15728 (Chris Stallone Stuttered Mix), By Lewis.72 by Reason Patch A Day

Thanks for participating, Chris!

Challenge Remix: BurnArea (Nociceptor Mix)

So, here's my remix of 1.44MB's track, BurnArea:

BurnArea (Nociceptor Mix) by Reason Patch A Day

I added quite a bit to 1.44MB's original track, hence my previous statement about making the song more mine than his, but if we set aside the issue of "ownership," I have to say I really enjoyed working on this song. It feels more like a collaboration at this point than a remix, but it was a lot of fun, either way.

In adding to BurnArea, I used the following patches from Reason Patch A Day:

Instrument Patches: Darker Dream 2, Dreams of Being A Harpsichord, Snapdragon, The Snickers of Shadows, Tachyon Eddies, Thaw

Effect Patches: A Little Darker, Airport Music, Borealis, Drone Chorus, Elusive, Latent Period, Simple Mastering

Challenge Remix: Heliopause (Mit Vergnügen Mix), by DJ Mad Wax

Here's the first completed remix, DJ Mad Wax's mix of my own song, Breaching The Heliopause. I admitted to Wax in email that I had a hard time recognizing my song in the drum and bass track he built around it, but its definitely in there, under a few additional layers of awesome. Wax had this to say about it:

I took all your remix parts as wavs and made REX files. Rebuilt your original song with the rex files, then began constructing a drum n bass version using breakbeat loops and my own breaks. As I built it, I added some new keyboards for the jazzy feel to complement the sounds I had from the remix, and added the deep bass line.

Heliopause (Mit Vergnügen Mix) by ostbahnoff

Nice work, Wax! Thanks! I really dig this!

Friday, May 7, 2010

.476 Yamaha Digital Drums DD-5

I haven't been very shy about my love for 1980s era Yamaha drum machines. They're not the greatest machines available from the era, but they have an uncommon sound to them, different from the Roland sounds that have become the de facto electronic music standard, and fortunately for me, they're available for next to nothing on eBay. I've been able to pick up several of them, all for under $50, and have found quite a bit of inspiration in them despite their programming quirks.

I've been on the hunt for a Yamaha RX21 to compliment my RX11, RX15 and RX17 machines, so I occasionally check out eBay auctions to see if I can find one for a reasonable price. While looking, I'll sometimes stumble across other machines that pique my interest, which is how I ended up with the exceedingly strange RX120. Recently, while once again looking for a cheap RX21 or RX21L, I found an inexpensive Yamaha Digital Drums DD-5, in its original box no less, and decided to make it mine.

The reviews I've found usually describe the DD-5 as little more than a toy, so while its actually a pretty common drum machine on eBay, I've been hesitant to invest much money in one. I'm glad I finally gave in.

The sounds? Well, like the RX machines I already own, the DD-5 has a pleasant lo-fi quality, but lacking in any low-end punch. Even the Bass Drum sample sounds a bit bright, but the Snare Drum and Hand Claps sounds are kind of fun. The RX machines seemed like they were designed to try to emulate a real drum kit, often being their most charming when they failed that goal, but the DD-5 is so prone to distortion and uses samples with such a short length that it lacks any of the analog warmth the RX machines seemed focused on achieving. Even its output jack is loud and filled with noise. Pile on even more distortion and you might have a halfway decent industrial kit.

What makes the DD-5 truly interesting, however, is not its sounds, but its capabilities. Unlike the RX120 which only had a puzzling MIDI-In, and the RX11, RX15 and RX17 machines that had both MIDI-In and MIDI-Out jacks, the DD-5 has a single MIDI-Out jack controlled by its four, velocity sensitive drum pads. You can probably see where I'm going with this. The velocity sensitivity is fairly weak, only 15 levels according to its users manual, but there is something surprisingly addictive about playing it within Reason and Record, bashing on its rubber pads with sticks and triggering whatever sounds you load into Redrum. I'll admit, I bought the DD-5 because it was a toy, something I planned to give to my son after I sampled its meager 12 sounds, but the more I played with it, the more its charms have started winning me over. With a little patience, you should be able to pick up a DD-5 for less than even a Korg NanoPad, half as much if you're careful, so if you're looking for an unconventional way to build rhythms in Reason, this Yamaha is an interesting option (assuming you already have a way to accept MIDI data into your computer setup).

Like all of the other Yamaha machines I own, thought I would share samples from it with all of you.

In the past, I've provided Combinator backdrops for my Yamaha machines, little jpegs built from photos I've taken, but I haven't had time to build a Yamaha DD-5 Combinator yet. When I get a little free time, I'm sure I'll whip something up, maybe with an instrument combinator to go with it.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

The PAD Challenge: Remix Reminder!

How are your PAD Challenge remixes coming? I just wanted to remind everyone that your Pad Challenge remixes are due to me by Saturday, May 8th, at noon.

I spent a huge chunk of today working on my remix of 1.44MB's song BurnArea and I should be done on time, but I'll admit, the task hasn't been an easy one. There are as many theories out there about remixes as there are remixers, but I've always felt that the best remixes highlight the artistic qualities of the original song, while providing just a different enough twist on it that the remix becomes its own, unique thing. I'm not sure if I've achieved that with what I've done to 1.44MB's song. At this point, it sounds more like something I might have done on my own, than what 1.44MB gave me to start with, but I have a few more days to tweak and fine tune.

A couple of points:

  • If everyone could send me their RNS file of their remix, once they're done, that would be great. This could be a very powerful learning experience for all of us, but we'll need to see how others have tweaked or manipulated our songs, if we can truly learn anything.
  • My basic Soundcloud account might be maxed out with the second part of the PAD Challenge, so if you have your own Soundcloud account, and don't mind hosting your remix, that would be a big help to me. Obviously, I'll host what I can, but I was hoping I wouldn't have to start removing songs so soon.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Spectrum Analyzer At Wendy Dunham's Site

This has already made the rounds on all of the usual sites, but if you haven't seen it yet, I urge you to check out the new Spectrum Analyzer posted on Wendy Dunham's site.

I did something a little similar in Patch A Day's early days with the Visual EQ patches, but my goal with those patches was to provide EQ and visual feedback in the same Combinator. Wendy's patch, put together with help from fellow Reason users Rogerraa and Selig, is simply concerned with frequency analysis. And, although its scope is a bit limited, the extremely clever way its put together makes it an essential tool for any Reason user.

What makes it so clever? It seems pretty obvious now, but Wendy put the frequency bands into the Combinator backdrop, giving a quick, visual reference to the bands displayed in the BV512 beneath it. Being able to see that a troublesome peak is hitting between 76 Hz and 104 Hz makes EQing it much easier than the usual trial and error that I find myself performing to tame something that's gotten out of control. With the Spectrum Analyzer Combinator, I can quickly zoom in on a problem frequency range and spend more time fine tuning it, than trying to find it.

Really well done, Wendy, Rogerraa and Selig!

Saturday, April 24, 2010

The Pad Challenge: Remix Update, Part II

My apologies for the continued delays. I think I have already contacted everyone regarding the files needed for the remixes, but going through everyone stated interests and the comments on the previous challenge post, it looks like most of you had that worked out before I even got on it. Great work!

If you still need files for your remix, please be sure to let me know. I don't think I missed anything or anyone, but if I did, please post a comment so I can get you what you need.

The deadline for the remixes is May 8th. Like the last challenge, let's try to get those in by noon.

The big event at work that has been consuming my time this last week (and more) is tonight, so things should be back to normal here on the blog by tomorrow.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

The Pad Challenge: Remix Update

I've been a little slammed at work this week and have fallen behind with getting RNS files and samples out to everyone participating in the remix piece of the PAD Challenge. I apologize for the delay. Things should be back to normal for me starting Monday, but I'll make getting those files out to everyone a priority today and tomorrow. Expect an email from me soon.

And, for those of you concerned about the deadline, please don't be. I'll start the clock after the last files have been collected and distributed to the appropriate people.

Again, sorry about the delay.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

The Pad Challenge: Phase Two Is On!

Okay, a few days ago I put up a post asking everyone what they thought of offering up their PAD Challenge songs for remix purposes, and even after I moaned and complained about the possible technical issues with doing so, the response was decidedly positive. So, here's how it's going to work:

I heard back from almost everyone, except V2057, saying that they were fine with their songs being remixed. If you need a refresher, here are all of the available tracks (posted in reverse order):

15728, By Lewis.72 by Reason Patch A Day

2048, By Jeremy by Reason Patch A Day

Ostbahnoff "That's a Great Color Combination," By DJ Mad Wax by Reason Patch A Day

Sunrise, By Chris Stallone by Reason Patch A Day

Space Clouds, By Chris Stallone by Reason Patch A Day

BurnArea, By 1.44MB by Reason Patch A Day

Vathi, By 1.44MB by Reason Patch A Day

Drones2 by Hydlide

Breaching The Heliopause by Reason Patch A Day

There are just a couple of technical hiccups with these tracks:

  • DJ Mad Wax's track Ostbahnoff "That's a Great Color Combination" uses the Goldbaby Tape 808 and 909 refills, as well as the Filter Research Refill
  • Jeremy used a homebrew refill he got from a friend, but also used the Propellerhead Strings refill
  • My entry, Breaching the Heliopause, uses Propellerhead Record

As Jeremy pointed out, we can get around some of this by exporting sub-mixes to WAV, which might result in some pretty big files sizes, making sharing our source files a little more difficult, but certainly not impossible. So, at this point, everyone just needs to lay claim to the track or tracks they want to remix. Lewis.72 mentioned he'd like to take a crack at Jeremy's track 2048. I'm thinking I'd like to see if I can do anything with either 1.44MB's BurnArea or Vathi.

Keep in mind, this isn't musical chairs, so you're not stuck with working on leftover tracks if someone else lays claim to them. If everyone decided they wanted to remix the same track, that would be fine. So, in the comments, please post which track or tracks you would like to work on. I have everyone's email addresses, so I'll try to organize things behind to scenes and make sure that files get to who needs them.

I'm a little hesitant to set a deadline, because I'm not sure how much time it will take for us to get everyone's files passed around. Let's shoot for two weeks and see how things are coming along at the beginning of May.

One last thing. I'm not a lawyer and I certainly don't pretend to have a good understanding of the legal issues surrounding copyright and such, but I'd like us all to adhere to a little "gentleman's agreement" regarding these tracks and their use. Any remixes completed via this second phase of the Challenge belong to their original authors. The name of the track cannot be changed and ownership of the song cannot be disputed. Remixers are, however, allowed a byline with their remixed track, so for example, if Chris Stallone were to remix Hydlide's track it would be "Drones2 (Stallone's Funky House Mix), by Hydlide."

Does that seem fair?

Saturday, April 17, 2010

PAD Challenge: 15728, By Lewis.72

Lewis.72 just sent me his entry for the PAD Challenge. It took a little longer than a week, but I think it was worth the wait. He writes:

It uses 5 patches from Reason Patch a Day:

Sleepless+HerschelGap - I love this pad and it's the backbone for the track.
Homemade4 - this Subtractor patch is doubling up an upright jazz bass patch from the FSB for depth.
Solar Bells Callisto and Solar Bells Umbriel - these two patches are the arp sounds. work great together - like chocolate and peanut butter.
Stereo Delay - a great effect being used on the arp sounds above.

The sample in the song, of a woman repeating "15728" was taken from The Conet Project, a web resource of so-called "Numbers Stations" on shortwave radios.

The rhythm and percussion patches come from the Reason Factory Sound Bank. I recently rediscovered the "Machines" folder and have been digging the set-up patches. "Needle Groovah" and "Synthi Drum Machine" are two of my favorites and lay down the beat. I changed up the patterns a bit, but they're similar to stock. "Jenkinson Drum Machine" is there to give it a bit of glitchy goodness. Didn't do anything to the pattern, but set it up to run randomly and played with the "loop edits" button to drop the pattern in and out.

I have one of my own patches in the song as well. "Copy Machine". This is one of my favorite effects patches, great for stutters or in this case, transitions. It's available on my blog.

15728, By Lewis.72 by Reason Patch A Day

I've used samples from The Conet Project in some of my own songs. Its well worth checking out if you're looking for something a little different to add to your tracks.

I thought I had all of Lewis.72's Combinators, but this one slipped past me, so I was glad to have it pointed out. Thanks, Lewis!

Check out Lewis.72's blog at Resonant Filter

Thursday, April 15, 2010

The PAD Challenge: Phase Two

If you read the comments here on PAD, you already know what I'm about to announce, but while in the middle of working on my own track for the PAD Challenge, it struck me that since we're using many of the same tools, we should be able to open each other's tracks. And, if we can do that, why not add a second, remix part to the PAD Challenge?

The problem is, we're not all using the same tools. Many of us are using refills, including commercial refills, that others of us might not have. And, others of us might be using additional software via rewire or other tools, that many of us might not have. Even if we had all restricted ourselves to Propellerhead Software, there still might be gaps that make our individual projects less portable. For example, I put my track together in Record, rather than just using Reason, so what seemed like a simple idea might not really be all that practical.

So, I want to hear from you. Are any of you even interested in a remix step to the PAD Challenge? Those of you who submitted tracks, would you be open to making your tracks available for remix? And, if you would be interested in having your fellow readers take a crack at your track (that sounded... wrong), what additional refills or tools did you use? Would it even be possible for others to work with your source file to remix?

I'll start. Breaching The Heliopause was created, as I said, using Record + Reason, using patches that have been posted here on PAD. So, to remix the track, using my original file, you'd need Record and Reason installed on your computer.

Anyone else? Let me know what you think about the remix idea in the comments.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

PAD Challenge: 2048, By Jeremy

Here's a late entry to the PAD Challenge from reader Jeremy, a funky kind of track that he humbly describes by saying:

I'm not sure if this is legal or not submission wise, but I don't have Record (need more money!), so the vocals were done in Reaper and the stems ran through Recycle and thereafter Dr R.

I'm not very good about talking about my music and I don't know genres and such it seems, so if anything is to be said about it..

it's goofy?

2048, By Jeremy by Reason Patch A Day

Not goofy at all, Jeremy. Thanks for submitting it, even if you did miss the deadline by a day. I think I've said this before, but this is definitely a case of the more being the merrier, so I'm glad to have your submission.

Peff's "Propellerhead Record + iPad" Video

Uhh... wow. I remember a lot of talk after the iPad was announced about how it would replace the Lemur, but this is pretty amazing. I know what just shifted to number one on my birthday wish list.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

PAD Challenge: Ostbahnoff "That's a Great Color Combination," By DJ Mad Wax

I got this contribution from DJ Mad Wax yesterday, but unfortunately was too caught up in meetings at my son's school, to do anything with it until now. Sorry about the delay in getting this up, Wax!

Inspired by a chance encounter in Berlin, DJ Mad Wax has this to say about his Ostbahnoff "That's a Great Color Combination" track:

Programmed Drums: Goldbaby's Tape 808 and 909 refills
Drum Loop: Computer Muzik magazine
Reason Patch-a-Day: Thor, Snickers of Shadows; Combi Effect: Airport Music; Maelstron, Fugitive; Maelstrom, Catharis; Subtractor, Rubberband;
Additional: various effects from the Filter Research Refill; various use of patching and standard Reason effect devices

Note: I'm mostly deaf, and this was mixed on headphones as my studio is not set up yet. If its too heavy on a frequency, blame the DJ Magic Mike albums and my bass system when I was a teen, or blame my DJ booth years :)

Thanks: to Robbneu for inspiration and the awesome blog.

Ostbahnoff "That's a Great Color Combination," By DJ Mad Wax by Reason Patch A Day

Read about what DJ Mad Wax is up to at City of Bass.

Thanks Wax! And, thanks to Hydlide, 1.44MB, Chris Stallone, and V2057 for your time and effort in this short challenge. It's been a lot of fun and the results have been really inspiring to me. Thanks for participating.

If you were working on a track, and I think there still might be a couple of you committed to turning one in, you can still get it in to me. Missing the deadline isn't a problem, so send it over and we'll get it posted up here with the rest.

Friday, April 9, 2010

PAD Challenge: Tarnac 9 (Rough), By V2057

Just got another PAD Challenge song from V2057. He describes his new track, Tarnac 9, saying:

I've been in a frenzy to finish this. Been working on it since wednesday, and its no where done but I wanted to send it out anyway. I used some of your combinators, but I honestly can't remember which ones and there was a lot of heavy tweaking going on. I really appreciate your dedication to Reason/Record, it keeps me motivated as well to work on songs. This song is titled Tarnac 9, under my artist label Lost Integrity.

Tarnac 9 (Rough), By V2057 by Reason Patch A Day

Learn more about V2057 at

As is the case with 1.44MB and Chris Stallone, V2057 provided me with an MP3 of his song, which I uploaded to the Patch A Day Soundcloud. I, in no way, claim any ownership of his work and all rights belong to V2057.

PAD Challenge: Sunrise and Space Clouds, By Chris Stallone

Like 1.44MB, Chris Stallone shames me by turning in two songs in the time I took me to only complete one. He has only a few comments about his new songs, but those comments are provided below:

"sunrise" i made in the week and spent more time on (various patches. yours, hydilde, L72 & my own)

"space clouds" is only hours old and i only used your patches although i tweaked alot of them

i dont think i completely finished them but i'd send them anyway

Sunrise, By Chris Stallone by Reason Patch A Day

Space Clouds, By Chris Stallone by Reason Patch A Day

As is the case with the submissions from Hydlide and 1.44MB, feedback is welcome and appreciated, but please keep the comments constructive and in the spirit of this challenge.

PAD Challenge: Burn Area and Vathi, By 1.44MB

I received these two tracks from 1.44MB last night and instantly felt inadequate. I started the challenge and only came up with one song, while 1.44MB managed to crank out a couple during his lunch break! Sigh. Good job, 1.44MB!

Of his songs for the Challenge, 1.44MB says:

Burn area is pretty similar to a lot of stuff I make whereas Vathi is much more upbeat. I'd like to be more upbeat more of the time but I feel I (my tracks) sound cheesy when I try. So, cheesy or not, I want to push Vathi out there for comments to see how I might be able to tweak it to sound a little cooler?!. Apart from your latest subtractor drumkit (which isn't really used with enough variation here) Vathi doesn't include much PAD input hence I've included Burn Area which is 100% PAD...... and in the spirit of the challenge only took 2 lunch times to lash up!

BurnArea, By 1.44MB by Reason Patch A Day

Vathi, By 1.44MB by Reason Patch A Day

Please note that 1.44MB provided me with MP3s of his songs which I uploaded to the Patch A Day Soundcloud. I, in no way, claim any ownership of his work and all rights belong to 1.44MB.

PAD Challenge: Drones2, By Hydlide

Hydlide was the first person to get his entry to me, sending in Drones2 yesterday, stating:

I started on friday with one 'experiment', it failed... however, I did make this huge pad from the ground up. So I re-used that in a new production where I made a new rack, took the pad again and worked with that as a basis.

There's some heavy stuff going on in this track, and everything was build from the ground up. I mostly used the subtractors as the main synthesis, added some samples left and right to fill up the transitions and went heavy on the drums (thats what I very often do these days).

I used one section of your patch a day blog, which was (ironically) a loop (Renoise DrRex post). I couldn't find the right angle making it sound electro beat like as I originally planned (hence the first experiment kind of failed on me).

But then again, genre doesn't matter.. so, i threw in a combi of ambience, house and progressive all together. I don't even know if there's a genre that is related to this style. But then again, I often blend certain styles together and go from there.

Drones2 by Hydlide

Please leave any contructive criticism or thoughts you might have about Hydlide's track in the comments. Also, be sure to check out Hydlide's website The Sound of Reason. He has an incredible number of tools and tutorials for Reason available at this site and on YouTube, so go take a look.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Soundcloud Song: The PAD Challenge Results

I started the PAD Challenge a week ago today and although the official deadline isn't until tomorrow at noon, I thought I would post my contribution to the PAD Challenge, a song called Breaching The Heliopause. Predictably, at least to me, Breaching The Heliopause is a little darker in its vibe, falling short of the traditional house or trance sound I was aiming for, but I'm still pretty pleased with the results.

Breaching The Heliopause by Reason Patch A Day

Breaching The Heliopause was created using Record + Reason. As was the case with the other songs I posted to Soundcloud and referenced here, Breaching The Heliopause was created using only instrument and effect patches that I built, most of which have been shared here on PAD. In case you're curious about the patches I used in the song, below are complete lists with links for each patch and post that I used.

Instrument/Combinator Patches:

Effect Combinators:

There are a few additional patches that I used in Breaching The Heliopause that haven't yet been posted here. My Tinnitus synth sound was processed using the Combinator "A Little Darker," which was included in the Reason Patch A Day Archive Refill, but hasn't been posted separately yet. Also, I used a few DrumBox Drum Machine patches that I created, but haven't had time to post here. You'll be seeing those shortly.

I don't think this would have been possible without Ruurd's help this week. So, thanks again Ruurd!

I'm really looking forward to hearing what everyone else comes up with. Expect more song posts highlighting reader PAD Challenge songs, as they start coming in.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

The PAD Challenge: Official Rules

A few days ago I posted my intention to use this week of reader contributed patches to give myself a chance to work on some new music. I decided to open up that challenge to all of you and have already gotten a couple of comments from people interested in joining in.

The Challenge, however, was a little vague so I thought I'd put up a quick post to explain the rules for this little challenge.

Deadline: Friday, April 9th, 12:00 p.m. (Noon)

Genre Restrictions: None. I decided to concentrate my efforts working outside of my usual genre, so I'll be working on a dance track. You're free to bang out anything you like, but if you want to be challenged, try putting together a song in a style you don't normally work in.

Software Restrictions: As this is a Reason-centric blog, I'm hoping that anyone who joins in with this challenge uses either Reason or Record to sequence their work. This may be very important for "phase two" of the challenge, so if you can, please stick to Reason or Record.

Please email me a link to your completed song by noon on Friday, April 9th. You can also email me a MP3 or RNS/Record to be posted on the Reason Patch A Day Soundcloud. Obviously, I'm not interesting in laying any claims to your music. As has been the case from day one here at PAD, the patches here are "bragware," so this is a perfect opportunity for you to brag a little about what you've come up with.

Email me at patchaday (at) earthlink (dot) net. If you have any comments or links you'd like me to post with your completed track, please send those as well.

As I said in the comments the other day, "keep in mind... the goal is to complete a track in a week. It doesn't necessarily have to be polished or good. I certainly don't expect mine to be, so you don't have to be the next Deadmau5 to play along."

So far, it looks like readers Hydlide and BenDarkFox have signed up to take this challenge with me. Lewis.72 expressed some interest, as well, but might not be able to fit the challenge into his schedule.

There are only five days remaining! Have you started working on your new track yet?

Update: DJ Mad Wax, Chris Stallone, V2057, and DBA are joining in on the Challenge! That makes seven entries! Anyone else?

Thursday, April 1, 2010

The PAD Challenge!

Most of what I do in Reason, and now Record, could best be defined as "ambient." The few songs I've posted on Soundcloud, using patches from Patch A Day, certainly fit that mold, but as much as I like making music to fall asleep to (humor fully intended), I have other musical interests as well. I really dig trip-hop, which is a genre that has probably already seen its day, and I really like a lot of the minimal house and deep house music I've been downloading from various netlabels. The problem is that as much as I enjoy these other genres, I'm terrible at creating songs in them. Everything sounds dated or flat and I eventually just give up, crawling back to the comforting drones and sparse soundscapes of ambient music... but, not this week!

Thanks to the patches I received from Ruurd, and a few offers I've received from other readers, I feel like I'm getting a little break from the blog so I can focus on making music. So, just as Patch A Day is the result of a challenge I made to myself over a year and a half ago, I'm going to challenge myself again. One week from today, I'll post a new dance track for your comments.

I don't expect it to be good, but rather than get halfway into it and then give up like I usually do, I'm going to finish this one. I'm hoping all of you will hold me to this deadline, because if I don't have anyone to be accountable to, I probably won't do it.

So, anyone care to join me? It's just one song. You can do it! Sign up in the comments and start working on a new track. Next week we can all share what we've come up with and offer each other feedback.

You have one week!

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Ned Rush's video: Thor Patch I Made

Resonant Filter is a great blog to check for the latest and greatest videos about music production, but I just watched this myself, thanks to my YouTube "subscription" to Ned Rush's videos, and thought I would put it up for the rest of you, if you haven't seen it already. It's a great display of the kind of interesting sounds you can coax from Thor.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

52 Reason and Record Tips - Week 3 & 4

I'm getting behind on watching these videos and certainly getting behind on posting them. If you haven't been keeping up to date on James Bernard's tip videos yourself, you can view Week 3 (Part Two - Advanced Dub Step Wobble Bass Sound Design) and Week 4 (Unlocking the Secrets of CV & Gate) below:

Definitely worth a few minutes of your time!

Saturday, March 6, 2010

The Reason Patch A Day Archive Refill, Vol. 1

I started Reason Patch A Day over a year and a half ago, which doesn't seem like very long when you look at it from the perspective of a lump sum, but somehow feels a lot longer. The result has been interesting, with literally hundreds of new patches, as well as a shocking number of visitors, since those first few pad patches were posted on September 25, 2008.

I've resisted doing anything to "monetize" the site. I've done this for a couple of reasons. First, I can't see that adding ads to the site would really generating much money. You're a niche audience; dedicated, but niche, and its hard to sell to a relatively small group. And second, Patch A Day has always been an experiment for me, a challenge for myself, and I've tried to share that challenge and its results because I think there are other people out there, like me, that are interested in patch design, but not always successful at it. Some of the patches here have been good, others complete dogs, and while I hope you've come across a few that you've found very helpful, I've never really thought that every single patch posted here was worth a fee.

So, where am I going with this long-winded explanation? The basic set-up of Patch A Day won't be changing. If you drop by every day, you'll still find a patch waiting for you, completely free, just as you've been able to do for the past year and a half. But, if you're a recent reader and haven't gone back through the archives to download all of the patches... and if you're lazy... I'm now offering the Reason Patch A Day Archive Refill Vol. 1. However, unlike the site, the refill will not be free.

Here's how it works....

  1. The Patch A Day Archive Refill contains all of the patches posted here on PAD, with the exception of reader contribution patches. The few readers that were kind enough to submit patches to the site didn't agree to this, so I wouldn't feel right including their patches in this refill.
  2. The Patch A Day Archive Refill costs as much as you want to donate to the site (with a minimum of $1). Drop me a payment I'll use the Paypal information I receive to email you the refill file. There's not going to be a Reason Patch A Day store and it might take me several hours to get the refill to you, so don't expect a traditional "buying" experience. After all, you're not really buying anything (it's already all posted here for free), you're just providing a well-appreciated tip.
  3. Readers who have contributed a patch to Reason Patch A Day will be getting this refill as thanks for their contributions to the site's success. You're free to toss in a donation if you like, but please accept this tiny token as yet another thank you from me for your help with the site.

The Reason Patch A Day Archive Refill contains....

  • 70 Bass Patches
  • 49 Effect Combinators
  • 20 Instrument Combinators
  • 15 Effect Patches
  • 177 Pad Patches
  • 72 Percussion Patches
  • 130 Synth Patches
  • 12 Sampler Patches
  • 4 Yamaha Drum Machine Kits (with additional variations)
  • Misc samples

In addition to the patches you've already seen, there are just a few extra patches that haven't been shared here, as well as a sneak peak at a new patch series/project that I'll be unveiling within the next week. In addition, while the patches provided in the refill are basically the same as the ones posted here on PAD, I have made a few usability tweaks to some of them, primarily with regards to their combinator controls.

That's it. You might be asking yourself, "What's to stop me from going back through the archives and turning these patches into a refill myself?" The answer is... nothing. Go ahead! Don't sell it or claim it as your own, that's not allowed, but you're free to make your own refill just like you've always been able to do. You're not missing much by not getting the Refill.

So, if you want to donate a few dollars and get completely caught up on Reason Patch A Day, just click the link below. Its not very often when you get something in return for dropping a few bucks in a tip jar.

Donations can be made using the sidebar "Donate" button! Check the upper right side of the block to toss a few dollars in to support the site!

Special thanks for Lewis.72 and DJ Mad Wax for their help in testing the refill and making sure all of it works! Thanks, guys! The refill is definitely better because of your thoughtful help.

Friday, February 26, 2010

52 Reason and Record Tips - Week 2

James Bernard's second video has just been posted and presents another great tip.

52 Reason and Record Tips Week 2 from James Bernard on Vimeo.

Again found via Lewis.72's much more up-to-date Resonant Filter blog.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

52 Reason and Record Tips - Week 1

This has been making the rounds just about everywhere, but it's well worth reposting to Reason Patch A Day, in case someone has missed it. James Bernard from Propellerhead Software is posting a video tip for Record or Reason every week.

This week's tip is how to create a "rhythmic gate" in Record. As is often the case, even after so many years of using Reason, I'm surprised by how incredibly flexible the cabling system in Reason/Record can be, and how much freedom the user has in creating these kinds of "out of the box" effects. I know that the Reason/Record package isn't unique in being able to do these kinds of things, but having used Logic for almost as long as I've been using Reason, I still couldn't begin to guess how you might do this same thing in that DAW.

52 Reason and Record Tips by James Bernard Week 1 from James Bernard on Vimeo.

Enjoy! For those of you still sitting on the fence with regards to Record, this video might be a good peek at what you're missing.

Thanks Lewis.72 for letting me know about this over on Resonant Filter.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

More Patches Every Day... Elsewhere!

Apparently the challenge of designing a new instrument patch every day is alluring to other folks!

Ghostly has just started his blog, Alesis Micron - Patch A Day, creating a new patch for his damn sexy Alesis Micron, every single day. And Hydlide has also started his own series of articles called "Propellerhead Reason 4 - A Patch a Day" on his website The Sound of Reason. Check out his progress so far by visiting him here.

If I can offer any unsolicited advice, its this: not every patch will work, so don't be afraid to fail or put up a stinker from time to time. Just own up to it when the patches don't quite come out the way you wanted and try to enjoy the process. It can be a little maddening, but also a lot of fun.

Thanks, guys, for helping to prove this idea has some merit! Good luck to you both and I hope both of your attempts at this crazy process is rewarding!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Soundcloud Song: Descent

Here's another ambient track I made, this time using Record, and patches that are available for download here on Reason Patch A Day. It is similar in a few ways to Separation, which I also posted via Soundcloud, but maybe not as polished. I feel like, at least in a few places, Descent becomes monotonous. I might need to revisit this one and finalize it.

Descent by Reason Patch A Day

Instrument Patches: Alone In The Library, Bass Bellows (not yet shared here), Drifting To Jupiter, Keyhole, Lustral + Between Saturn's Rings, Memory, Ruby, and The Snickers of Shadows

Effect Patches: Airport Music, Borealis, Borealis2, Campfire, Interesting, Rough Around The Edges, and SubWide

Can I feature one of your tracks here? As I've said, in numerous posts, I'd like to hear what you've done with any of the patches provided on this blog. Send me a Soundcloud link to your track or email me your MP3 or RNS file and I'll post it here. My only requirement for featuring a reader track is that you have used a patch or sound from this blog somewhere in your track.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Moby's Drum Machine Collection

I think this has already made the rounds, but I just saw it, and thought it was worth posting for those of you who haven't yet gotten the guided tour through Moby's analog drum machine collection. There are some really cool noise-making boxes on his shelves.

Found over on Gizmodo.

I didn't spy any of the old Yamahas on his shelf, like the RX15, RX17, or the RX120, so I guess Moby isn't as cool as I originally thought. Maybe its his aversion to digital. Still, he has a nice collection. (insert liberal smileys here)

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Reason Patch A Day is... on Twitter?

Occasionally I use Stat Counter to take a peek at where people are coming from when they visit Reason Patch A Day. Sometimes its interesting, as a link to this blog will get posted in some genre discussion forum I've never heard of, and it can be a lot of fun to get a glimpse at what's going on in corners of the internet that I've never seen before.

A lot of traffic comes from what I consider "sister" sites, like Lewis.72's Resonant Filter , my buddy DJ Mad Wax's City of Bass site, or the new, excellent Phi Sequence Music blog. I do what I can to promote these blogs, so it's great to see people discovering Patch A Day through them, as well.

But every once in a while, I find something really strange. For example, there's a Japanese site that (I think) is dedicated to the Casio VL-Tone, where Patch A Day is linked. Or, there's the Russian DJ site where my combinator skins were being discussed a while back. And then, there's the stuff I just can't wrap my head around. For example, the recent traffic I've been seeing from the Patch A Day twitter feed.

Reason: Patch A Day (reasonpatchaday) on Twitter

The part that confuses me is that I never signed up for a Twitter feed. I've never even used it, so I have no clue how this happened or how it's being maintained. I suspect its automatic, but Google, which hosts Blogspot, doesn't have any link to Twitter that I'm aware of. It seems like something I should have signed up for, and there is a log-in option, but I have no clue how to get in and make it work.

Anyone have any knowledge they can share to explain this? I'm really baffled.