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Software Review: MASCHINE Expansion – DROP SQUAD From Native Instruments

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If you have any version of MASCHINE, Native Instruments also creates add-on expansion packs that you can use to bring more life to your music creation. The latest one of these is DROP SQUAD that allows you to bring the sound of dubstep with punchy drums, wobbles, synths and deep basses home to your MASCHINE.

DROP SQUAD works with MASCHINE, MASCHINE MK2, MASCHINE MIKRO, and there is even a version for iMASCHINE. This expansion kit explores the best of dubstep, 2-step, grime, and post-dubstep and blends it into a sound pack that has real punch. With this expansion pack you also get custom presets for MASSIVE – NI’s standard setting synth with a penchant for deep bass music.

 

DROP SQUAD

 

Included with DROP SQUAD, are 35 kits that include a 120 patterns that are all designed to give you a lot of flexibility. There are hard-hitting drums, FX stabs, very deep basses, sweeps, and low-end wobbles. They are laid out with punchy drums on pads from 1-8 and on pads 9-16 are leads, licks, effects, and basses. There are also special kits that have additional wobbles, drills, tribal percussion, mechanical one-shots, and ‘vowel’ sounds.

A first for an expansion kit is the fact that DROP SQUAD includes custom MASSIVE presets. These were especially designed for this kit and are integrated into the songs, kits, and patterns. They add powerful synthesis to MASSIVES groove production suite. What’s more is that MASSIVE’s eight macro controls integrate perfectly with MASCHINE’s eight top row knobs. One thing to keep in mind is that if you have MASCHINE, you have MASSIVE. As of the latest version of the MASCHINE software, you can download the latest version of MASSIVE.

DROP SQUAD is aimed at Dubstep producers and electronic music producers, but I have found that it can be also used for effects in other genres as well for effects and sounds. What I like is that, as with other MASCHINE kits you get the drums, hits, loops, and other sounds, but the presets are what really set this apart.

If you want to see on how this can be used, check out the DROP SQUAD introduction, or you can also take a listen to some of the audio demo’s,that NI has on their site.

 

DROP SQUAD

 

Overall, DROP SQUAD is a lot of fun to work with and very easy to use and really gives you a lot of flexibility when creating your music. There are a number of sample sequences set up so that you can see how things can be put together. If you are looking for something to add to your MASCHINE set up I very highly recommend DROP SQUAD.

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About T. Michael Testi

Photographer, writer, software engineer, educator, and maker of fine images.