Options for Recording Roland V Drums

DrummerCA35

Senior Member
Hello,

I have a Roland TD-20 set, with a TDW-20 expansion card. I bought this stuff new years ago in the 2000's. Amazing how fast time goes by. I still enjoy practicing on it. Anyway, during this pandemic, our band wants to record a few songs. The person who knows the most about this, the guitar player, says he wants to get a MIDI file out of my V Drums, and then use whatever sounds he wants for the songs. I know there is a MIDI out. Logistically, how is this done?

- get a MIDI to USB cable I assume
- connect USB to my laptop
- Play the part, while somehow recording it to a MIDI file on the laptop via the USB? How does the start of the recording get initiated? What software is needed on the laptop?

For those that know how to do this, I'm sure it's easy. I've just never done this.

Or, what if we decide to use the standard sounds in the module? Then there is an output for every instrument, but I know there are also mono/stereo outputs as well that I've connected to an amp. I doubt they want to over complicate this, but if I just use the stereo outputs it would somehow need to make its way to USB to some kind of file, that I can dropbox to the band. Everyone is in their homes, passing files around, I think. For example, I was sent an MP3 of a click, with the guitar, bass, keys, and scratch vocal to play to. I know each output could go into mixing board (bass, snare, toms, cymbals, etc) but I don't know that they want to go with way or even come into each other's houses. This is a for fun endeavor, and I've seen other bands do this.

Sorry for being long winded...any thoughts / advice?

Thanks
 

electrodrummer

Senior Member
Here's the "best" way to record edrums - posted here before:

1. Module --> MIDI data --> Software (DAW/Sequencer/whatever the cool kids are calling it these days. I mostly use Cakewalk/Sonar - www.cakewalk.com - which is now free.)

2. Split MIDI data to individual tracks in DAW if you want individual control of all drums / cymbals - usually a simple button push in your software

3. Tidy up MIDI data as necessary, remove duff notes, change tempo, etc

4. Send MIDI back to module[*], whilst recording the audio from the module[*] - this can be done track-by-track, or the whole lot at once, depending on the number of audio tracks you want - every instrument, just a stereo mix-down, or anything in between.

So, now you've got both audio and MIDI. This is most flexible, meaning you can adjust anything in future. Change tempo or instruments or sounds/entire kit, just re-do [3]-[4]

[*] or to your chosen software synth/VST/whatever the cool kids etc...

Stages 1-4.fw.png
 

DrummerCA35

Senior Member
Thank you! This is incredibly helpful. The flowchart is also extremely helpful. If I get a the MIDI file, the guitar player may just do the rest, using his own equipment. However, if I have this right, stage 4, I basically have the module take the MIDI file, and then I assume I can assign whatever sounds from the library to MIDI kick/snare/hats/cymbals/toms and send that back out as the audio in your flowchart? If such is the case, the mixing volumes would be done with the Cakewalk software to the MIDI file? Or at the module level. Sorry for the elementary questions. But if I can get this to work it will open a whole new world for me.
 

electrodrummer

Senior Member
"library"?

But yes - mixing done in the software/DAW/thing. Either during stage #4 (ie. set the MIDI volume levels) or post stage #4 when mixing the audio tracks.
 

DrummerCA35

Senior Member
"library"?

But yes - mixing done in the software/DAW/thing. Either during stage #4 (ie. set the MIDI volume levels) or post stage #4 when mixing the audio tracks.
Thank you! By library I meant all of the sounds in the TD-20 module. I wonder why that wouldn't be enough to get a good sound for the tracks; even if it's an old module at this point.
 

electrodrummer

Senior Member
Not crazy at all! I like module sounds as well and never had a complaint. Also no computers on stage for me.

Crazy is spending 5,000+ on a new kit today and using it only as a glorified MIDI controller to fire off a 199 lump of software because you don't like the sounds! 😉
 
Top