User Interface How does it look? Is it easy to use? Can it be confusing?
First impressions on opening up Guru's UI is that your greeted with a very professional looking and well laid out interface.The default skin you get on opening Guru is a nice silvery grey *my prefered skin* although there's an option to change this to black. There's nothing at all confusing about Guru's UI as everything is well labelled and most functions if not all are accessed through a single mouse click to take you to the vast amount of features avalable. About ease of use..It took me about 4 hours to get the general feel of Guru but mostly i found myself messing around with the remix slider to alter patterns i had created but so far iv'e only scratched the surface of this fine instrument.
Sound What does it sound like?
The sound can be as crisp or as dirty as you like by adding filter and fx such as bit crush and ring mod and assigning them to various pads.Recording patterns and creating scenes is a breeze and recorded loops etc are output in 24bit quality...Top Notch indeed.
Features Is it a one trick pony or does it offer more than you would expect?
Im running the full version here so the features included are vast and im still finding new ones..One things for sure and that is that Guru is no one trick pony and does offer very much more than i expected espescially when you start dabbling with the subouts and Guru's sound shaping ability. You can save songs,patterns,all pads as kits and more. The scenes are absolutly brilliant for live playing just hold down shift and click your mouse when the current pattern is playing and it copy's that current pattern to a scene of which there are many..Again a must for live use so thumbs up to Fxpansion for that feature from me.
Documentation Does it have a manual? Is it any good? Online tutorials? etc
There is a well written pdf manual although i haven't really had a read of it yet.
Presets Does it come with presets? How many? Any good?
I can't comment on the presets as i delete all presets of any synth i buy or download so as to start with a blank canvas for sound programming purposes although after registering Guru at Fxpansion there are tons of sounds/loops and kits available for different genres for you to download.
Customer Support If you have never had to use Customer Support this will be hard to judge, but please try to be fair, do they offer a forum, e-mail support, an online FAQ, etc.
Iv'e never actually used customer support but if i need to know anything i'll just email Angus or one of the guys at FX and their on it as most will know the guys are active daily here at KVR so it's 10/10 from me for that reason.
Value For Money Considering how much it cost you was it worth it?
Well iv'e seen that Fxpansion have released a CM version with a special upgrade price so if i were any user i'd say upgrade to the full version for sure..The full version has so many features and it could be the only source you'll need for drums period. I paid about £105 for Guru and i'd have paid double so at the end of the day yes it was worth it :-)
Stability Does it crash? Is it unpredictable in how it sounds?
Guru has only ever crashed in Standalone mode for me but im sure that had more to do with my system setting or user error than anything else..Iv'e never got it to crash in Live/Sonar or Studio One Pro yet.
On a final note:
This is my goto instrument for Drums.My only gripe if it is a gripe is that i'd like a slightly larger UI and to be able to name the pads but other than that i would highly recommend buying this software and if there is a Guru 2 anytime in the future then things can only get better...Im hooked on Guru it's as simple as that..
When I originally stopped using my MPC and decided to make music exclusively in my PC I was a little disappointed at the available software out there for drum work. Don't get me wrong there were some great things like Phatmatik or RMIV, but nothing that really inspired me like my MPC did. Then I stumbled across GURU.
GURU has become my go-to drum sampler, and even "regular" sampler on some occasions. The wealth of options it has to alter/combine your sounds is superb. The user interface is easy to navigate and is quite intuitive. The auto-slicing functionality is fun to use and every so often I end up with something that is completely usable right out of the gate.
The sounds that come with GURU are pretty darn good as well. I haven't tried any of the new content, but I was satisfied with what originally came with the software. I normally use drum/percussion samples/loops from my own collection.
Now there are a few things here and there that could be modified or improved, but that's the case with all software. So I won't mention anything specific. It's all very minor in my opinion.
At this point I would consider GURU a true classic. I don't see why I wouldn't be using this 5 years from now, or even 10.
Well it's a bit unkind to call this a "loop workstation", it's more than that....
You can use GURU as a sample playback engine too, and it comes with a really big set of very usable drum samples (electronic and acoustic), each tweekable in so many ways.....
In the end though I DONT do something so simple wiht it, I DO however use it as an extended groove workstation; it's my replacement for Battery AND my replacement for sub-mixing in my DAW. It comes with hundreds of usable loop structures, sounds and effects. I've been using it for about 4 months now and I'm realising that I dont need to route multiple outs from it I can do all my (non-radical) drum processing inside GURU, as well as all my loop tweeking and pattern building. In the end all my drum related work (outside of making drum samples) now happens inside GURU. Given the high quality of sounds included, and the ability to easily config your own kits and add sounds of your own there's little you cant do in here. Its one major limit I can see me coming up against is only 16 sounds in each kit, but even then I can load up multiple kits each in its own groove (with say one playing 16-beat sequence one playing 22-beat seq. at the same time for funky polyridims..). Yeah it sounds really really good, it works really really well, go buy it, you wont regret it.