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Drum Synthesizer Plugin by Aly James Lab
50.00 €
VSDSX SDSV Drums by Aly James Lab is a Virtual Instrument Audio Plugin for macOS and Windows. It functions as a VST Plugin, an Audio Units Plugin and a VST 3 Plugin.
Windows 10 and higher, 64-bit host VST3.
Mac OS(10.10) or higher, 64-bit host, plugin formats VST3 and AU.
Universal 2 (Native Silicon/Intel)
Sample Formats
Loads and/or Saves
BIN 8-bit companded EPROM image, BIN 8-bit Linear PCM
Copy Protection
Serial Number
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VSDSX SDSV DRUMS (Virtual Simmons Drum System Extended) is an authentic Simmons SDS-V drum synth recreated in plugin which emulates all the character and internal circuitry of the legendary 80s Analog Drum brain synthesizer with those famous hexagonal shaped pads. The Simmons SDS-V Drum Brain, invented by Dave Simmons in the early 80s, it also adds features from SDS7 and SDS1 and since version 2.0 an emulated Claptrap voice based on the Simmons Digital Claptrap. Highly velocity sensitive this is a drum synth, real-time sound generation and not sample based.

The Simmons drums were all over the place, on countless records and live shows during the 80s, used by artists and bands like Genesis, King Crimson, Jean Michel Jarre, Prince, Herbie Hancock, Pink Floyd, etc. The sound was not especially realistic but it was not the goal... the goal was to be huge and versatile. The most famous drum brain called the SDS-V or SDS5 was a drum synthesizer, bringing synthesis into the drummer hands. To this day the unique sound of that machine is highly regarded and only using samples of Simmons Drums cannot reproduce the wide range of sounds this machine can produce and especially the warm and punchy analog character. The whole circuitry stands next to the unique sample based characters of the hihat & cymbal in that unique sounding team.


VSDSX, which stands for Virtual Simmons Drum System Extended, provides the closest experience to the real thing, for each voice or as it was called (module) it models accurately the analog sound generation, internal circuitry tuning, trigger velocity sensitivity and all the details you can find explained inside the dedicated manual.
For its hybrid voices (HIHAT, CYMBAL, PROM & CLAP are a mix of analog/digital) clocks and counters reading EPROM memory at variable sample rate are perfectly emulated in realtime.
It models the SSM2044 filters offering fine tuning control over internal control voltages, trigger shapes, and VCA response. It also emulates how the module will react if triggered with pads or sequencer...MIDI velocity will change the synthesized sound drastically whether you use real drums trigger detection or piano roll style composition.
Offering multi output capability for your DAW, VSDSX will give you that legendary powerful analog punch! On top of the cake, two voices can load your own external EPROM image data (digital sample) like on a real SDS1 (EPROM based) pad...offering a whole new range of sounds.
VSDSX is now on version 2.3 and features among other cool things a perfectly emulated Simmons Digital ClapTrap module, a clap synth which combines a variable sample rate digital source combined with pitched analog noise, an original feature of the unit was to never produce the same sound twice. Although it is integrated inside VSDSX a dedicated ClapTrap 2.0 plugin with stereo widening, chromatic (per note) trigger, original hardware filter and EPROM replacing capabilty is available separately.

VSDSX provides a huge synthetic drum sound by itself and can also be used with great efficiency in drum layering. Parameters automation and modulation can turn this thing into a creative sound source

Runs on PC/Mac 64-bit Systems and is compatible with 64-bit DAW/Host (VST3 for Windows and VST3 or AU for Mac).

VSDSX Features:


The special tone character of the drum synth is mainly caused by the raw analog waveform generation and by the circuitry itself, it generates harmonics that are normally not present in an ideal triangle waveform, VSDSX emulates that behavior and also models the analog clipping that occurs when pushed hard. You can also switch to a clean mode which will behave like an ideal system without OPAMP bandwidth limitation (more highs). These features alone offer a great versatility for sound design. A custom mode can switch all oscillators from the typical Simmons shape to a Sine shape that can be used if you would need less harmonics.


The sound source of the drum synth was mainly a mix between a triangle oscillator and a transistor based noise generator. The way it was initially connected could be tuned for more or less frequency content. Each voice has different configuration and VSDSX offers user control over the internal noise filtering (especially useful on the snare voice card).

A lot of the circuitry parameters can also be fine-tuned, CV and VCA response, Trigger types (that will mostly impact the click attack generator time) etc.

SSM2044 Filters:

The noise source was filtered by an SSM2044 lowpass filter chip, the filter acts on the noise and click part and behave differently depending on the voice, on bass & toms the resonance resistor was usually set to no resonance, but this can be tweaked inside the VSDSX if you want.


One of the obvious things that must be there in a drum synthesizer is a pitch envelope to simulate the behavior of real drums. The SDSV module featured a bending down effect that can be set to more or less amount of bending. VSDSX also features a bend up option and an optional FM modulation taken from the SDS7 module, the LFO can go from very slow to audio range modulation and can be optionnaly controlled by velocity.


The VSDSX have dedicated outputs for every voice like an original SDSV + PROM and CLAP modules.

You can choose from ALL to 1 Stereo Channel or Separate Channels for each voice.


The drum synth is highly sensitive to the power of which a pad or a key is hit, VSDSX gives independent access to sensitivity tuning for each voice, the pitch of the tone, VCF cutoff, click trigger etc...You can also disable the volume velocity tracking and only set a pitch sensitivity which gives access to a similar feature than the "run generator" found in certain Simmons Systems.


The GUI features all the SDSV controls (with the same weird naming) but can also give access to a full module display with more in-depth controls, most of the parameters can be MIDI learned and controlled by an external MIDI Hardware or automation.


By default VSDSX triggers are mapped to the MIDI GM standard but you can customize it to your liking using its MIDI learning function. The map can be saved globaly and will be recalled everytime.


The VSDSX provides one voice which is based on the mighty Simmons ClapTrap, finely tuned against an original unit it reproduce the digital circuit, EPROM looping, Human feature and pitched noise source.
The original VCAs got something between an exponential and linear behavior useful for those almost gated claps, VSDSX adds a more pronounced exponential option, slightly increased tuning range on the low side and also provides an entire dedicated plugin if you feel like clapping someone's face with stereo widening capability using two emulated voices running with EPROM clock and filter offsets.


The VSDSX provides two voices which are EPROM based (like SDS1 or SDS7) the imported original EPROM image(sample) will benefit from the bend and noise mixing feature with that crunchy 8bit sound.
Load your own custom made EPROM image. EPROM format is the same as VProm (U255 companded) for easy compatibility but it can also now load Linear PCM format(most of Simmons original EPROMS were Linear PCM).

VSDSX supports any size EPROMS binaries (.bin) between 1K to 64K.


in many formats (additional technical info in manual.).

Latest User Reviews

Average user rating of 4.67 from 3 reviews

Reviewed By Hans25 [all]
January 28th, 2021
Version reviewed: 2.02 on Windows

This is my favorite drum plugin. It has a fantastic sound quality equal to the original without the use of samples but with synthesis.The GUI is clean and the presets are good. That's how I mostly use it (just choosing a preset). Because its a plugin without samples its obvious smaller than a sample based and loads faster. The price is a steal in my opinion. And it just got updated to version 2.0.2. So dont hesitate.

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Reviewed By BrockHardcastle [all]
July 7th, 2014
Version reviewed: 7 64x on Windows

This along with the VLINN from Aly James Lab make two of the most unique and incredibly detailed drum machine emulations on the market.

Like I mentioned in my VLINN review, I've now garbaged all my samples for Simmons drums. This is it. Some quick highlights:

Every perameter is editable and can be automated.

This thing can make HUGE 808 style kicks, or knocking little taps like a TR-606. The snares are surprisingly useful, and can stand on their own or be layered under other samples for depth. The toms are what the Simmons drums were all about and there is nothing to miss here. They are gigantic, and again - every piece of the sound you could conceive of is editable and customizable. The hi-hats were shockingly useful to me. They sound great if tweaked well. They have a realness to them, and sound like the Linndrum sample (which I believe they were originally cribbed from on the SDSV)

It has individual outs so mixing is super easy inside your DAW.

There are selectable levels of output which can really add the grit and definition of analog drums.

You can custom-load PROMS in it. So adding a clap or another snare, or whatever is easy. It then runs through the circuitry and comes out the other end sounding appropriately degraded.

Aly is on a roll with these plugins, and he's doing something NONE of the other developers are doing. Furthermore, he's doing it at 1/4 the price.

If you love the sound of the 80s. You need this kit.

If you have samples of a Simmons kit, throw them out and get this.

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Reviewed By arkmabat [all]
July 4th, 2014
Version reviewed: 8 (x64) on Windows

Although I was born in the 90s, the Simmons sound is something that quickly became a part of me. From old 80s rock bands to ambient drum noise for 80s cartoons, there's something that always stuck out to me about a Simmons. Upon realizing how much I loved the sound, and after finding out who made the drum (and that it had been discontinued), I began the VST and sample search. I first came across some drum samples, but of course the SDSV was one of the only ones the website owner wanted a donation for, and it was only for samples. Then I came across a freeware VST that was "SDS-V'-style" which I was grateful for at the time, but in the end I forgot about as well. It wasn't a complete emulation. My search ended and I sort of gave up on the idea for a while. Then, out of nowhere I see the most beautiful drum GUI in a post on KVR. Something about a "complete emulation" that can load old roms and everything. I listened to the sound demos and instantly that sound I remembered from childhood came back to me. I donated and am now enjoying the drums very much. I never thought I'd be using them with modern synth sounds, but they actually sound great together. Alone, the SDS-V can sound odd, but mixed with other instruments it is surprising how well it fits in, even with more modern sounds. I see myself using this in many songs to come. It sounds so much more real and different from stock drum samples. It has more life to it. And it brings back old memories at the same time. Well done.

GUI - 9.

Sound - 9.

Usability - 9.

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Comments & Discussion for Aly James Lab VSDSX SDSV Drums

Discussion: Active
1 July 2014 at 2:58am

Is there a demo available?

4 July 2014 at 3:47pm

The demo songs demonstrate it pretty accurately.

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