alesis sr 16 drum machine

soun in phase

Are things getting to n-Track in stereo?

You are talking about listenening to a playback of recorded sound, and not sound played live through N-track, right?

Assuming for the moment that you are talking about recorded sound: When N-track is panned hard right and hard left, does the phasing sound go away if you record after turning off one channel of the stereo output of the Alesis? (Try both channels, one at a time.) Are sure it phasing that you are hearing and not doubling with a very short delay?

The hypothesis that I am thinking of is that somehow an output is getting looped back to an input or that there are two routes from an output to an input, and one route has some latency. If this is what is happening you should still hear the phasing sound (doubling?) even when one channel of output from the Alesis is turned off.



The hypothesis that I am thinking of is that somehow an output is getting looped back to an input or that there are two routes from an output to an input, and one route has some latency.

My first thought too.

Rumbleseed - you haven’t got the output from the soundcard plugged back into the mixer have you?

if you record a LIVE drummer using say 6 mics, (1 mic per track) then all will be well and good -

if you try to emulate the same using a drum machine by recording 6 different tracks at different times it will not be good -

Phasing happens on a digital drum tracks because the Alesis is not synced to N, Both may show that they are at 120bpm but they are not, the BPM on the Alesis only has to be a fraction out and phasing occurs - it will also occur when trying to play the Alesis in time to a recorded track from N -

the answer is you can record only one drum track, and that track must contain all the drum parts - OR use a plugin software drum kit that will be synced automatically to the host - But i have known these to phase if plugin compensation is not used or is not correctly implemented in the host -

drum machines are ment for LIVE STAGE USE not as a replacement drummer in a recording -

if you can remenber how old style record players introduced WOW because the hole in the record was not in the centre, or the player was a pinchwheel type (not belt driven) the sound would slowdown and speed up as the record was played -

Ntrack is synced by the system timer, the Alesis (although it may be crystal controlled) is free running - the output from the Alesis will be like that of the old 7inch record it will vary over time creating the WOW effect which causes phasing -

Dr J

Aha. Bet you have it pegged Dr. J. One point might need some clarification though. The phasing that you are talking about ought to occur only when the same drum (e.g. snare) is recorded on the same beat on more than one track. Can’t you overlay drum tracks and have no phasing as long a you avoid this? So you could have a kick drum on one track and a snare on another that hit on the same beat (but recorded at different times), and there would be no reason for phasing. Or if the beat was 1 2 3 4 you could have a snare one one track hit on 1 3 and a snare on another track hit on 2 4 without phasing being an issue. Right?



drum machines are ment for LIVE STAGE USE not as a replacement drummer in a recording -

Not necessarily so Doc. Many great recordings have achieved commercial success with “drum machines” generating the percussion parts. The difference, as you partially alluded to, is in the synchronization of the drum machine and the host/recorder. If that Alesis will chase time code and your host/recorder can generate time code, then you are probably gonna be OK. However, if your drum machine is like mine and WILL not lock to external clocks PERIOD… you’re stuck. You are forced to record a stereo drum track containing all the parts to avoid phasing and comb filtering issues.

The high dollar drum machines have multiple synch options. The cheapies (Zoom RT234 etc…) rarely have ANY synch options…


I had the imrpession that he was only recording a stereo track out of the machine, not overdubbing, and that it had to be a routing problem.

"drum machines are ment for LIVE STAGE USE not as a replacement drummer in a recording -"

no offense (theres that disclaimer again) but that is absolutely the most untrue statement ever, in the world, in any century or time period, worse than the crusades and the holocaust put together.

ok maybe not, but its not true. :p

Diogenes - exactly - 1 DRUM TRACK is OK, more is not - just looked at the top end Boss drum machine, no sync - never seen one that has - yes, of course studio recordings can be made using drum machines, the problem arrises when the drum beats are close to each other soundwise, kick drum/snare OK one low one high - kick drum/low tom or trying two kick drums = Phasing = problem -

JasonBrianMerrill - i would be interested to hear what drum machine you have, how you connect it to N and how you arrange the kit when recording to avoid phasing ? -

the Drum machine is ment to suplement guitarists on STAGE this is a fact of life, thats what they are sold for, Alesis make a statement about ‘some’ engineer using it in the studio - they dont say who ? - was going to buy top end Boss for my ‘MAGIC RABBIT’ recording studio, but decided against it, just isnt worth the hassle - if somebody wants drums they either provide their own pre programmed machine or a real drummer -

on a personal level i have been recording since 1970, and for many, many years i have wanted a recording studio to compliment my graphic design studio, especially for DVD production, its far cheaper to have recording capability ‘in house’ than spend large amounts on out-sourciing, and this year the MAGIC RABBIT studio opened its doors, OK so its not big, but it serves the purpose -

Dr J

Having had lots of experience with the venerable SR-16 I’m not sure why folks here think that recording or performing with it would ever result in phasing problems unless there was a routing problem. Just take the stereo outs and put them into n-Track as dual mono tracks and pan them left and right. Even with two kick drums, as long as they are different samples, then what’s the problem? Phasing -comb filtering really - occurs when there is construct and destructive interference, and that is just not likely to occur unless the same signal is layered on top of itself. Even if one were to do multiple passes with the sr-16 and it wasn’t quite in sync for each pass, as long as the first pass is the kick, the second is the snare, etc., and one never tries to layer the same snare on top of itself, there won’t be any problem. Layered snares and kicks are all the rage these days anyway.

I think I must be missing someone’s point here.

Anway, rumbleseed, was it a routing problem? ???

I don’t think I get it completely either Tom. I have been using my Zoom for a long time with no weirdness… BUT I do see how phasing or comb filtering could occur in some situations. I’m guessing rumblessed had a routing problem and/or a latentcy/feedback thang goin’ on…


I record a lot using that drum machine. I record the stereo output to one stereo track in ntrack. Sounds great, but then, I’m not looking for any spectacular drum stereo effects, I like the way they sound as ouput from the machine.

My hookup is pretty simple, two 1/4" mono plugs from the Alesis to a 1/8" stereo plug to the soundcard. I would think if you record to two mono tracks, you would lose the stereo effect programmed into the machine, so you’d have to pan each track, but then deciding how much to pan would be problematic, as you have discovered.

100% pan on the two mono tracks - so that what you hear recording is what you get on playback. Or do it to one stereo track as you do. Same difference. :)