Just picked these up in the Group Buy. A few thoughts:
1. The workflow/layout of the interface is pretty terrible IMO:
- Why do we need a page dedicated to selecting just a few read-only kit presets?
- Why do we need a whole page dedicated to picking the room and why does that need scrolling to see the full list with so few options?
- Why is such an important page like "Edit Element" buried in another page?
- Why didn't they combine the "Edit Element" and "Play Style" pages?
- Why aren't the OH and Room channels just always exposed on the mixer
- Why are there no values on the mixer for OH/Room/Send levels?
- Why no way to quickly bypass all FX and route the outputs?
- Why can you only adjust the cymbal send levels to the OH/Room channels in the mixer page where it's very small and there's no way to see the levels?
2. The room options are beyond awful. Are people very frequently recording drums in a "bunker" or a "cathedral?" They should've placed these modeled drums inside the Sunset Studio rooms and just had better studio rooms overall. Very strange choice.
3. Some sounds seem to have built in processing. Why? See the Studio Kick drum. How do you remove the very audible reverb that's in the OH on the kick, that just isn't as present on the other drums?
4. As pointed out many times before, the sampled cymbals do not sound at all realistic. Just try riding the crash and ask yourself if that sounds real. The hats don't offer enough articulations either.
5. I didn't like any of the presets I've heard. I dunno, maybe someone loves them, but that is not how I expect drums to sound.
6. You can add damping to the heads, but not the kick drum itself to shorten it. What's up with that?
7. The tuning for the heads doesn't seem to have a very profound impact in my limited testing. I've got a kit and the basement and you can definitely make big difference just by changing the tuning on the beater head.
But...there's some good stuff. There's definitely a realism on the drums that's very lively and dynamic, particularly with snare rolls. I was just experimenting with layering MODO Drums (no cymbals or hats) with a BFD3 kit, and it sounded really good. Didn't do anything to try to match the kit pieces, nor did I mute the kick and snare on the BFD3 kit, just layered them as a group. The combo sounded much better than either by itself. MODO added some extra movement to the kick/snare/toms and BFD3's hats/cymbals with the swell modeling along with the better sounding room, really upped the realism of the MODO kit. It sounded like modern drum replacement where you're throwing a sample under an acoustic kit. Really great sound.
MODO Drums by itself could really benefit from some improvements to the areas I outlined above (an interface makeover and better cymbals). But if you have other drum software you can layer it with, give it a shot. It may just surprise you.