The good folks over at Dope Vst strike again with yet another hip-hop focused plug-in that caters to the beatmaker. Crate Digger 1.0 even targets a very specific craftsman in its name, seeing as though the phrase “Crate Digger” is so specific to hip-hop and the culture of record collecting amongst hip-hop heads.
What it is?
According to Dope VST Crate Digger 1.0 is described as a Virtual Vinyl System within which you will find “rhodes chords, old synth riffs, chunky guitar stabs, orchestral runs and delicate piano melodies among a host of useful FX.” Not to be considered a throw away plugin that finds you growing tired of the existing presets with no recourse, Crate Digger is set up to be expanded regularly. According to Dope VST, “We will also be releasing a new “crate” collection every month covering every style of sampling and sonic creation you can think of, meaning this software will forever be expandable.”
As a note from Dope VST regarding the royalty free samples…
“All the samples are 100% royalty free and cool for -okay to use in- commercial tracks. These were all made in house.”
According to Dope VST, “Crate Digger has been inspired by the dusty, crackly atmospheres and chopped up sampling techniques utilised by Hip Hop producers in the 1990’s and early 2000’s. ” As a plug-in Crate Digger is designed to be a Virtual Vinyl System. This is a brilliant concept in terms of making it easier for aspiring beatmakers to explorer the ways of the classic hip hop producer minus the dusty fingers and vinyl record space issues. I’d even say its a great way for our current sample packed driven beatmakers to get their hands on a cool and easy system that will allow for regular sample pack updates and expansions as time goes on.
So, for those that may not have a handle on the esthetic of sample chopping, choosing samples and the like, Crate Digger opens the floodgates in a very accessible way. Chances are that one may even learn a bit about sampling and chopping from what’s provided. Not to mention, Crate Digger 1.0 as a tool is rather inspiring even if you are a crate digger yourself. Sometimes you just want to sit down and bang out a quick boom-bap joint without the hassle of looking for the perfect sample. With Crate Digger 1.0 that part is done for you already and best of all the samples are 100% royalty free.
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Not too complex in its design, Crate Digger 1.0, hits a bit of a sweet spot that has become the Dope Vst calling card. Which is to say that the interface is familiar with just the right amount of controls.
To the left of the screen there is Vol, Reverb (analog style), Pitch and Pan. To the right there are controls for Velocity (hard / soft) and Voice (mono/poly). Just beneath these controls on the right there is a small piano keyboard graphic which allows you to know which key each sample resides on and it highlights according to which key is active at the moment.
Dead center is the screen and presets panel which houses the included 50 presets (with 800 samples). Centered beneath the preset panel are the ever-present 4×4 grid of 16 pads. The 4×4 grid is also the format of the Volume and Pan adjustment controls for each of the 16 pads. So, to the left there are 16 volume controls corresponding to each of the 16 pads and to the right there 16 pan controls corresponding to the 16 pads.
See, Crate Digger has a very intuitive and simple layout. Yet, it gives you the controls needed to get down to business and tweak the most important parameters of the various samples.
- 800 quality crafted classic samples including stabs, chops, loops, FX and more
- 50 themed patches all EQ’ed mixed and key grouped for instant use
- 100% Royalty Free, all these samples are made from scratch by our own team of producers
- 16 separate volume and pan controls
- Velocity selection and Mono/Poly modes.
- Built in flexible pitch and drive controls
- Includes a built in analog style reverb
- New “crate” expansions will be released monthly
- Ultra low CPU usage [perfect if you own a laptop / tablet / low spec PC/MAC]
- Ultra fast patch loading [flick through patches in lightening quick times]
- Program your chops manually or use a MIDI/USB controller/keyboard/MPD
PC // WINDOWS
Windows XP / VISTA / 7 / 8
500Mb Disk Space
VST host (32bit or 64bit)
MAC // OSX
OS X 10.4 And Above
500Mb Disk Space
AU or VST host (32bit or 64bit)
My Thoughts / Conclusion
Crate Digger 1.0 is yet another home run for the Dope VST team. The facts are where the win is for the end-user. The fact that it comes with 800 carefully designed and 100% royalty free samples spread out across 50 presets is a win in itself. Not to mention, the samples sound great. They’ve really taken care to create a quality set of included samples. It just plain ole sounds good.
Also, the additions of the quick load times, intuitive lay out, built-in analog style reverb, ample pan and volume – velocity and voice – pitch and drive controls, light on the CPU and is expandable… all of these things may seem small at first but all together these are invaluable features and that makes Crate Digger a must have. I am personally anticipating big things to come from the expansion packs too.
Although, I would caution that if you use something like MPC software as I do the Crate Digger kits start at C1 which is “bank C pad 5”. The MPC’s first pad starts at “bank A pad 1” which is something like C-2 or C-1. It be cool if there were a way to change that for convenience sake. Maybe that will be in some sort of settings tab somewhere in a subsequent update. Still in all, that’s a minor issue and the sound is dope more importantly.
The Crate Digger is definitely a plug-in to watch, to own and to covet. Consider this one BboyTech Certified Dope!
Head over to the Dope VST product page tp purchase the Crate Digger http://dopevst.com/?artist=crate-digger-1-0-hip-hop-samples.