Pads rubber A.K.A. The Annoying Customer's Corner

The point of disabling velocity and utilizing velocity modulation should become obvious with a little experimentation :wink: Actually, using velocity to control only volume is not a very dynamic sounding control IMHO, much better to use velo to control env snappiness or filter cutoff or fm amount or something instead, with maybe a touch of level mod in there with the other modulations…

BTW, would it be possible to adjust velo sens this way as well, ie. using a vel modulator for level and setting a diff depth value instead of the default velocity-volume setting?

EDIT: According to the manual, it is possible to use a depth value in the velo mods, therby making it possible to finetune velocity response? Just disable the velocity to volume sound setting, and add a velo modulator with level as the destination and adjust depth to taste… This is actually great as one can use a diff velo response for each sound separately.

But yeah, the way I see it, drum pads offer two advantages to other input methods, the physical bounce when the rigidity of the pad rubber is a bit soft, and of course the physical size, ie. big enough to do flams. So far the AR pads have some softening up to do in order to reach the softness required for the bounce, but perhaps it will come after some years of hammerin. As for the size of the pads, IMO they are too small but not impossibly so.

But are you really considering a return on the AR just because of the pads? As soon as the MIDI multimode option is added, you can use pretty much any padcontroller to input the notes… Even without the pads the AR achitechture is unique AFAIK.

Glad you posted this. I’m loving my AR in other ways, but the pads are a big disappointment. I don’t mind the size, but:

  • they’re not nearly responsive enough for finger drumming. The only velocity I can consistently get is VERY HIGH. Very difficult to trigger anything low or in the middle, and basically impossible to do a consistent crescendo.
  • the minimum pressure required to trigger a note is too high. This is a problem both for playing ghost notes and for switching tracks; I want to be able to select a new track to edit without having to bang the pad hard.
  • I’m not getting entirely consistent response for flams and other circumstances where I play quick rhythms on a single pad. My AR seems to miss some of my strikes, though this might be released to my previous point.

I’m not just being a whiner here. I’ve variously used Maschine, an MPC 1000, and a Korg PadKontrol pretty extensively and never had these problems. Pretty frustrating, especially since the Velocity Modulation settings on the AR theoretically allow for such cool playing.

Yeah but just to be fair, those padcontrollers you listed are among the best available to my knowledge. This is Elektron’s first padcontroller, so I’m willing to give them a little slack…

Just wish that the multi MIDI setting would be available soon, it would make everyone’s life a lot easier.

I’m not nitpicking about how the feel of the pads isn’t bouncy in exactly the way I want. The big issue here is that the pads don’t allow consistent velocity-responsive playing, which I thought was the whole point of including pads in the first place.

And I’m a lot less willing to cut slack for such an expensive piece of gear.

Fair enough, I blew all my holiday money on mine :stuck_out_tongue:

I guess if enough users are vocal about this, something positive might come out of it?

Time for a third-party pads upgrade kit like we had for the MPC-1000? Someone email the mpcstuff people!

Ok, so like how bad are the AR pads? I’m on the JRR waiting list, but the pads for me are a huge reason for getting one: both for playing drums as well as for pressure based p-locking, scenes, and performance mode. Without pads, I wouldn’t be interested in the AR.

On a scale of Maschine (great pads) to Novation SL 25 keyboard with pads (crap), where would the AR pads fit?

I bring up those two devices, since they’re the only ones I’m familiar with…

Anyone with a very recent AR notice if they are still stiif/insensitive?

yea I second poonti… anybody have a recent one care to chime in? I might just request to order an AK and pay the difference and not wait forever if it’s going to be more of the same thing.

Agree x 1,000 … Mine is quite recent and still sh!t pads.

The pads are as bad as anything I’ve ever dealt with. I’ve been using velocity sensitive pads for a long time. From Akai, Roland , Yamaha, Emu and Novation. I’ve purchased controllers for 1/10th the price with better quality. It’s not about being negative or whining but this is unacceptable. $1500 is a lot of dough to spend and I expected better quality. The censers under the pad need to be replaced. If we’re having problems now imagine in a year or two before they become totally unresponsive.

I bought the AR for the sound and the fact that the sample joins the synth sound before the filter and distortion. The pads are just a bonus for me really, they make it more fund to play with than the machinedrum and that’s still a cool instrument without pads.,

Don’ you guys think that Elektron can make the sensitivity of the pads be customizable in an OS update?

I hope so, velocity adjustability like the Ableton Push would be great!

It’s possible that they can make it better. But the fact that it didn’t ship with better sensitivity makes me worried it’s a physical problem with the sensors. And it’s weird that they didn’t recognize the issue earlier on.
It’s a pretty obvious problem; had I been beta-testing the AR, I would have reported this as an issue after 10 minutes.

I’m definitely waiting with purchasing after reading this.
Really hope it’s fixable with a future update, elektron?

I didn’t want to start a fire like this! :frowning:
The AR sounds awesome and what you can do with it is stunning, in my opinion.
I was just wondering if the average quality of pads was a little skunky, or if it was my machine only-issue

I was going to just buy it but i guess it’s best to try it out for a couple of hours before buying.

Don’t feel bad Alex, it was a legit question and it’s an important issue. As I’m not a finger drummer (or at least, not a very good one), I don’t think the velocity sensitivity would be a huge problem for me, but I’d definitely like them to be responsive in performance mode. If I remember correctly the MPC1000 pads had a lot of issues too, so it’s not an unreasonable concern.

Just chiming in the validation on all the opinions presented here.

Got a launch unit, and my pads are stiff as well.

I got a launch machine, my pads are stiff too.

I also have Push, and I used to think that the pads were stiff on that. Having used the AR, the Push feels much more responsive. I’m sure that the AR’s pads have got better and more responsive over time, and I’ve noticed that the less used pads, such as 7,8 and 9, are more stiff than 1, 2, 3 and 4.