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Feedback / Review

Posted: Sat Sep 26, 2015 7:28 am
by nickynoodles

I spent several hours with the my new Aerodrums last night. I thought I'd give some feedback while it's still fresh in my mind

The Good

- Latency, or lack of it: Wow, the developers did a great job on this. I was hitting the palm of my hand trying to feel any delay and it's barely there, single milliseconds. That really impressed me

- Samples: These are really nice drum sounds, very natural. Much better than Kontact. You should make more of how good the samples are on your site.

- Accuracy and dynamic range: I was surprised how expressive you can be. These things are really sensitive to the lightest tap.

- Software: Downloaded and installed really easily. Interface is intuitive.

The Not So Good

- The lamp / reflective markers: I can see why reflective markers were used, but I'm not sold. I was in a dimly lit room and had to spend a while covering radiators and shiny things. If I turned on the lights in the room, things didn't work. So you're then blinded by a lamp burning your retinas, even if you're trying not to look at it.

As an experiment I switched the lamp off, turned lights on in the room, uncovered the problematic objects and used my phone flash to control the drums. Worked great as a test.
I'll definitely be getting some LEDs and cobbling together a visible light solution. Clearly IR is the way to go eventually.

- Height: I'm 6' 4", things just didn't work well out of the box, my virtual snare being far lower than the top of my knee. Took me a while of waving sticks in virtual space to figure out what was happening. You could probably ask the drummer's height and do some automatic adjustment, which would give a much nicer initial experience.

- Feet separation: Again, related to my height, I sit with my legs quite far apart. This caused problems where one marker was disappearing into the 'dead zone'. I ended up putting my feet much closer together, which works, but would result in a tiny snare in real life. I'll continue to experiment to get this right.

- Expansion packs: I'd happily pay more to get the entire Natural Drum library preconfigured to work with Aerodrums. There's also the opportunity to sell electronic kit samples, dance kits, house kits etc.

Overall a great product, and some amazing work has been done to get it this far. Looking forward to an IR based v2 (if there's a reasonable upgrade path for existing customers). I think that will make the product much more mass market ready.