5Pin Media, a Loopmasters label that was formed in 2009, specializes in combining MIDI patterns with audio samples to create unique and highly flexible sample products. We reviewed 'Modern House Beats', the latest addition to their product portfolio.
MIDI has been around for some decades and audio samples are far from new either. But 5Pin Media brings the two worlds together in a range of MIDI based sample products that can give anyone that burst of creativity they're looking for.
MIDI carries note information such as pitch, duration and velocity, but no sounds. To play a MIDI sequence, you need to run it through a
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For those of you who really like the free sample pack, it is actually a taster of their '5Pin Media Label Sampler 2' library, which in turn showcases 5Pin Media's sample products. It is packed with MIDI Loops, Multisample Patches, Synth Presets, WAV Loops and WAV One-Shots from a range of their other products, including 'Classic House Keys', 'Modern House Beats', 'Deep Future Tech', 'Deep Progressive House' and 'Drum and Bass Breaks'. You can buy the sampler on the product page for only a few bucks.
piece of hardware or software capable of producing sounds.
MIDI, patches and presets
5Pin Media's objective is to create interchangeable and versatile sample products and for that reason they're not only shipping MIDI files, but they complement those files with a selection of carefully crafted sounds in the form WAV samples and popular soft sampler formats. They're even including the open, public SFZ format for maximum flexibility and for which there are many third party players/plugins available, such as the free Alchemy SFZ Player.
Combining MIDI with samples, patches and presets is a rather logical step and as such not unique, but in our opinion 5Pin Media really goes the extra mile with their libraries.
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We're impressed with what 'Modern House Beats' has to offer. The library consists of 13 kits, with a total of 156 drum samples and 104 MIDI grooves. Each kit also has corresponding patches in the following formats: Live 8 Drum Racks, Maschine, Kontakt 3, Battery 3, NNXT, EXS24, Halion and SFZ.
In addition, each kit includes complete project files (with all the MIDI preloaded) for NI MASCHINE and ABLETON LIVE users. Last but not least, 5Pin Media has included 20 bonus WAV loops and 22 MIDI groove templates.
Review and verdict
We already know the power of MIDI, but what is great about this sample library's MIDI files is that they have been infused with a great natural feel. They are really rich, groovy patterns, without the 'mechanical' feel that many over-quantized sequences have. You can leave them unchanged, but they're also a great starting point for your own grooves. 5Pin Media has done a great job here. Whether you are a beginner or already a pro, such MIDI files are really priceless.
Programming your own groove can be a time consuming effort, especially finding samples that fit. But with the patches included in this product, you have instant grooves with perfect matching sounds. And not only do they match, but they are also of excellent quality. Carefully crafted, clear and crisp. The samples include house drum sounds as well as a range of bass tones, FX-Drums and Vocal stabs.
Combining MIDI loops with WAV samples, soft sampler formats and project files in one single product is a really good idea in our opinion. Literally within minutes you can create the entire foundation of a new track. And although it may have been an obvious move from 5Pin Media to combine MIDI with samples, it is far from trivial to create a quality product that simply works. But 5Pin Media has done an excellent job when it comes to usability. 'Modern House Beats' is very intuitive and easy to work with. All files are nicely arranged and the product includes all the documentation you need.
Our conclusion is that you cannot go wrong with this library. You may settle for the MIDI grooves and samples that 5Pin Media has included and that's great. Creating awesome grooves was never this easy. But this product can do more for you and has the potential to boost your groove composition skills considerably. Indeed, it could actually liberate your creative genius.
Have a listen to the demo track, which gives you a good impression of what you can achieve with this spot on product from 5Pin Media.