Enhancing Live Drums With Samples & Effects

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There is a lot more to the drum sounds you hear on the radio than meets the ear. The problem is that it can be very hard to figure out how they sound that way just by listening to the finished product, so we thought we'd help.

In this video Fab Dupont shares ways to make acoustic drums sound clearer, punchier, vibier and able compete better with electronic drums. In this 22:37 Minutes video Fab shares how to augment drums with samples, both manually and with plugins, and how to fatten a bass drum with a triggered tone all the while insisting on the background info you need to make the enhancements sound natural and real.

If you have tried everything to make your acoustic drums sound pro but are still struggling, this video is bound to help you.

Exercise files
Equipment & Software
  • Apptrigga
  • Slate Trigger
  • Sonnox Oxford Reverb
  • Avid Signal Generator
  • Avid Gate/Exp
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Fab Dupont

Fab Dupont is an award-winning NYC based record producer, mixing/mastering engineer and co-founder of

Fab has been playing, writing, producing and mixing music both live and in studios all over the world. He's worked in cities like Paris, Boston, Brussels, Stockholm, London and New York just to name a few.

He has his own studio called FLUX Studios in the East Village of New York City.

Fab has received many accolades around the world, including wins at the Victoires de la Musique, South African Music awards, Pan African Music Awards, US independent music awards. He also has received Latin Grammy nominations and has worked on many Latin Grammy and Grammy-nominated albums.


David Crosby

Queen Latifah

Jennifer Lopez

Mark Ronson

Les Nubians

Toots And The Maytals

What do you have to say?
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2019 May 19
I’ve only had this PUREMIX PRO Subscription for only a short and have only watched a few tutorials. I’m learning so much about sound and how to listen and I have two degrees and 20 + years in music. These guys are The Real Deal! Thanks for sharing your knowledge!!
2016 Dec 01
got a minute (or 2 or 3 ;-) - luckely there's a 15sec back button) till I got it - but that thing with the tone trick and the gate is really cool! gives great sub-bass with the kick! very helpful!
2016 Jul 06
Thanks Fab. I am really enjoying the tutorials. I have learned a lot in the last week and I have been mixing for quite some time. Most of my experience in with FOH, but I have mixed a couple of CD's. I am looking forward to adding some of these things to my bag of tricks to get the best sound and mix possible.
2015 Oct 05
To be fair, the original bass head sounds pretty good on my laptop speakers! All the flab is gone. Headphones? Well, that's another deal, isn't it. GREAT tutorial!
2015 Oct 01
Beauty! Thank you for this elegant tutorial.
2014 Dec 01
Very Nice Viedo
2014 Sep 30
Awesome video Fab! I know the Yellow Tools samples are no longer available..can you point me in the direction of some good acoustic drum sample libraries that are available...
2014 Jul 19
"Compression obsession"
2014 Jun 29
Bravo Fab! That's the kind of things is mostly needed as the majority of the times we, people that dont't work in facilities like Flux Studios, have to deal with poorly recorded tracks. You should do more of that like for instance: how to make a harsh and thin vocal track sound great (or at least acceptable), how to manage a particularly unruly bass performance or even how to properly reamp a guitar track by using plugins. Adieu ;)
2014 Mar 20
Et merci !!
2014 Jan 11
very useful ! big badaboom tab transient mode "ON"
2013 Dec 10
very useful video Fab. Thanks you :) any way you could tell us where can we find the sample library you used in this tutorial? I searched for pureDrums, but had no luck with it. Can you post the exact name please? thanks in advance!! :)
2013 Dec 02
Thanks Again, great tutorial keep it coming!
2013 Dec 01
Hey YettiBrad The tone thing is set up pretty much the same way in Studio one. You create an Aux track and put your tone/signal generator and gate on it. Enable side chaining on the gate. Then create a send from the kick track to the gates side chain and finally adjust the settings on the gate as needed
2013 Nov 30
Anyone know how to do the tone trick with Presonus Studio One?
2013 Nov 30
Just wanted to point out there is a much easier way to do the majority of this if you happen to have version 9 of Ableton Live. I pulled the four audio tracks into Live, and in the Arrangement (horizontal) view, right-clicked on the left overhead region and selected "Convert Drums to New MIDI Track". This detected the kick, snare, and overhead and gave me a new MIDI track with the beats already positioned for all three (it did miss the cymbal hit). This picked out default samples for me, but I just dragged out Addictive Drums onto the track and mixed the added drums within the plugin.
2013 Nov 27
15:45 - "Yo! open up!" just fabulous ;) Great video Fab, keep it up. Cheers, Christian
2013 Nov 26
Like always making things look so easy. Thanks Fabuloso.
2013 Nov 26
Please kindly ask you to make the effort to put captions on all videos, because those who do not speak English we are losing many good, thanks!
2013 Nov 25
Dawn i knew it i knew it !!!!!!
Fabulous Fab
2013 Nov 25
100 points for Le.mario. Nice ears and musical culture.
2013 Nov 25
GREAT VIDEO. love it.
2013 Nov 24
It's No Doubt's Hella Good Snare Sample !! Love that snare sound! Oh damn you said to send a post card !! :/ .. where to exactly??
2013 Nov 24
Very useful as always Fab ! I just need that tab to transient function in Logic !!