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Roland’s V-Drums Tutor DT-1 is a drum teaching system which analyzes your playing, provides feedback on mistakes and information for you to learn about the strengths and weaknesses of your playing.
Roland.co.uk is a UK-based company which supplies drumming products, support and more. Its V-Drums software can be installed on Mac or PC, and you then connect your computer to your Roland V-Drums kit. This all synchronises and the software knows exactly what you’re playing, when you play it.
The benefit of this is that you can receive automatic updates on your performance. If you miss a bit, pick up the tempo or your stroke balance is off, the simple interface shows you exactly what’s going wrong. At the end of your performance, you’re then given a score which helps you to identify your strengths and weaknesses whilst also allowing you to see your progress over time.
V-Drums DT-1 is suitable for basic home use or even to help teach students in music schools. It covers beginner and intermediate levels and incorporates 60 songs for players to attempt. Songs begin simply and build in difficulty but there’s always a new challenge to be met. In particular, the game-style of the performance software is a useful incentive to try harder and improve, with a sense of fun.
You can use the software to play by ear, but you can also learn to read drum notation. A wide range of basic drum patterns are also provided so you can build a repertoire of ever-developing beats to call upon when you need them.
The software allows you to alter its settings to suit your own style and level. You can change tempo, isolate segments to repeat them as much as you like, hear your performance on a playback or simply listen to music without the drum elements to create your own beats.
A potential drawback to using Roland’s V-Drums Tutor DT-1 is that you must use it with one of Roland’s V-Drums kits. These are fairly high tech kits and vary significantly in price. If you already have a drum kit you like which isn’t a V-Drums set, this software won’t be of much use to you.
The website provides support for users, including a blog, instrument information and a store locator. Since Roland is primarily a UK company, it may not be quite so easy to get the kits and software outside of the UK. However, the website provides plenty of information on their equipment, parts and spares, plus a knowledge base and owner’s manual. You can easily find updates and drivers if needed, or contact technical support if you have any questions or issues.
A few drumming apps are also available from Roland, which can be used with the V-Drums set. These include Friend Jam, a sort of online competitive drumming app where you can compete with friends. Software and apps are also available for children, if you’re interested in supporting your child or a young student in their drumming career.
Whilst Roland V Drums Tutor DT 1 is an affordable and responsive system for V-Drums users, it will be of no use to anyone who has another kit. Still, if you own a V-Drums kit or wish to purchase one, it seems silly not to spend a little extra to get this useful piece of software.
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