(approximately 20-30 minutes)

Welcome to the DrumTrack8 Tutorial Quickstart which explains the basic concepts and working processes for Simple Is Beautiful's DrumTrack8, drum-step sequencer for the iPhone and iPod Touch. Have fun!

  • Once launched, DrumTrack8 will briefly display its splashscreen and load up the Pattern Panel.  (Note: When relaunching, DrumTrack8 will open the last panel along with the last song and its settings.)
    IMPORTANT: In recent releases, a pattern will be preloaded so you can test it out right away. Shake your iPhone to clear out the notes.
  • NOTE: Clicking on the question mark (on the upper right hand corner) opens each panel's help screen.

Pattern Panel

  • You are currently in Draw Mode. Click in the various Tracks, laid out horizontally in 16 Steps. Notice the steps light up red.
  • To the lower left of the Tracks, you can adjust the Volume Mode  for a particular step by moving the slider up or down. The color of the steps indicate the volume from bright yellow (min) to bright red (max).  
  • Note: Clicking on the Volume Icon  lets you scroll between editing the Track’s Volume, Pan, Pitch and Offset, a.k.a. its Step Modes. Only Steps in Volume Mode are played, so when you are in other modes, you should see empty steps grayed out.
  • In Volume Mode, click and hold a step that you have painted. Its current mode value is indicated in the Toolbar Display. While holding the Step down, you can move the slider to change its volume interactively.

    1. Clicking once will erase the Step.
    2. Clicking twice will assign it at current Volume Mode.
    3. Shaking the iPhone or iPod in Draw mode will erase all the active steps in the Pattern.

  • Click and drag a step you have painted. Notice that the steps you drag over get painted in the same value. This will also work if you select an empty Step to erase a series of steps by dragging.
  • Click and drag to paint steps while interactively adjusting the Volume slider with another finger. Instead of assigning a constant value, you can get graduated transitions like that shown above.
  • Click on the Draw icon to toggle to Selection Mode. Selection Mode lets you displace or copy a step, steps or entire tracks.
    Important: displacing or copying step(s) does so in all four Step Modes simultaneously.
  • In Select mode, try the following:

    1. One click and drag to displace a step in any direction.
    2. Two fingers and drag to rotate the track horizontally or displaces the entire track vertically.
    3. Three fingers and drag to copy tracks vertically. Warning: The track will paint its step values while dragging.

  • Click on Play, located in the Toolbar.
  • bpm Tap the Toolbar’s BPM button once to display the current BPM. Holding the BPM Button down while moving the slider lets you define the new BPM precisely, or you can tap the BPM button to establish the rhythm of playback.
  • Now go to the Mixer Panel by clicking on the in the Toolbar on top.

Mixer Panel

  • Click on the + or – in the Toolbar to hear your drum pattern played with a different Drum Kit.

    In the Toolbar, click on Play again to Pause the playback. Pausing lets you start playing from the point you left off, while the Stop button resets the playback to the beginning of either the Pattern or the entire Song. Since we have only one pattern, we should be in Pattern playback mode .

  • Go to the Song Panel by clicking on the in the Toolbar to build up your song structure.

Song Panel

  • Create new patternduplicate-pattern The section on the lower right is called the Pattern List and is where you create your patterns. You create a new Pattern by selecting the Create or Duplicate Pattern Button on the lower right hand toolbar:
    Song Panel Pattern List Menubar.
  • Duplicate your Pattern. The new pattern is now selected. Notice it is a different color than the first pattern.
  • Add new steps or modify existing ones to differentiate this pattern from its predecessor. Optional: Go to the Mixer panel and select a new Drum Kit for the this Pattern.
  • Play this new Pattern.
  • Go back to the Song Panel when you are satisfied with it.
  • Create new pattern Once you have two or more patterns, you are ready to start building up the Song Structure in the lower left hand window by stringing together instances of your Patterns. Select the Add Pattern Instance button on the lower left hand toolbar:  .

  • Drag and drop your patterns from the Pattern List Window on the right to the Song Structure Window on the left to quickly create Pattern Instances. You can also delete Pattern Instances by dragging and releasing them outside the song structure window. You can drag and drop your pattern instances to reorganize them quickly and easily.
  • Click in the Toolbar Display Panel to type in the name your Song.
  • Then click the Save Button next to the display panel to save your song structure to your iPhone or iPod Touch.

  • email-pattern-in-MIDI or Wav-format If you wish to import a pattern to the DAW software of your choice, select the pattern in the Pattern List and click onto email it in General MIDI Format. The exported MIDI pattern is one track where each drum instrument corresponds to General MIDI notes, e.g. Bass Drum =C1, Snare Drum = D1, etc.

    Note: Your iPhone/iPod Touch Mail program must be configured correctly for this feature to work.
  • Congratulations! You’ve made your first song!

From here, be sure to read the documentation for more features available in each panel. Have fun!

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