Vintage RDK Final on the Props Website

Friday, December 2nd, 2005 | 4:06 pm and filed in Reason, Propellerhead, Combinator, ReFill.

The final version of the Vintage RDK combi Refill is now available on the Propellerhead Software website. There were a few bugs in the Release Candidates which were fixed and a selection of over 40 REX Loops have been included in the archive.

Originally I planned to do a separate REX Loop only archive, but apparently this would have violated the license agreement for RDK. In other words, people cannot use the Reason Drum Kits refill in order to produce drum loops for sample libraries-commercial or otherwise. With their permission, I’ve been allowed to produce a number of loops which are all included in this one ReFill.

The Combinators are structured from the producer kit template included in the RDK2.0 Refill.

Vintage RDK Controls

PRESSURE controls the aux return input on the primary mixer which adds a compressed kick, tom and ambience signal back into the main mix creating a fuller low end.

TUBE PHASE CXL is tone control created using phase cancellation. The Aux 2 bus is routed through a scream 4 set to the Tube Distortion algorithm which induces a slight phase offset. Sweeping this control causes certain frequencies especially in the treble range to filter out.

AMB & VERB LVL controls the amount of ambience and reverb in the final mix.

FIDELITY CV primarily controls the gain of the high shelf eq on the MClass Equalizer. This control is driven by the Gain Reduction control voltage of the MClass Compressor and the optimum setting is around 63. The rotary control also modulates decay release, pitch bend, and PEQ-2 equalizer parameters which creates real-time variations based on the loudness of the mix.

BASS BOOST enables a low frequency parametric equalizer section on output MClass EQ.

TUBE BIAS switches the bias settings on the Scream 4 Distortion which induces the phase shift for the TUBE PHASE CXL control.

AMB & VERB MONO switches the stereo spread of the ambient microphone signals and the reverb outputs to mono.

SHELF EQ MOD enables the Hi Shelf EQ section modulated by the Fidelity CV control. Disabling this button will only switch off the high frequency contouring. The pitch bend, envelope, and PEQ-2 Equalizer modulation routings are not affected.

15 Responses to “Vintage RDK Final on the Props Website”

  1. neoverse Says:

    This refill totally kicks ass.

  2. edenflux Says:

    reason is so easy to use but i hear muddyness in the upper mid range compared to ableton. especially if you have alot going on. the peeps i talk to make fun of reason plus my friends that make music other than house sound, like hiphop n breakcore sound kinda course n fuzzy. FL has fixxed their toy sound, i hope reason 4.0 will do this. word on street

  3. neoverse Says:

    come on man, why do you have to be such a downer

  4. Peff Says:

    I’m not exactly sure what is meant by muddyness in the upper mid range. Muddyness is usually associated with bass and low-mids. This is what you use equalizers for: to adjust frequency response curves. The new Hi Resolution MClass EQ is great for this, but I use it for the opposite in these combinators because I wanted to carve off hi frequencies for these drum sounds.

    Live and FL are both very good tools and many people use Reason in combination with them for a complete production system.

  5. lagowski Says:

    Reason is more than adequate for recordings or a live event. I just did a gig in Poland and the sound from R3 was incredible at high volume - clean and powerful.

  6. sonicman Says:

    Reason3 is a unique and straight forward application, but its limitation of an audio in for recording purposes (vocals, basses, etc), makes it very unattractive compare it to FL studio or live5, or sonar.

    I’m not going to start talking about vsti issues, but if props want to stay in their own environment, then they definitely need to bring some real soft synths in their application with great algorithms. I’m pretty sure that if reason had 2 synths like z3ta+ of (rgc audio) and atmosphere (spectrasonics) then it would be a one-way solution!!!
    Synths like malstrom are a joke, it sounds so thin, u cant really mess with it for pro production music.

    Finally… does anyone know why after all these years reason doesn’t have a time clock??

  7. Mortal Engines Says:

    I hear alot of pissing & moaning about the sound quality of Reason & notice that it generally comes from those who want a great sound “right out of the box”. For what it’s worth You can achieve a great sound with Reason 2.5 even you just have to work at it a little bit (via layering synths & compression & EQ). This approach also lends itself to CREATING YOUR OWN SOUND… Not one that comes “canned” with the software package you are working with. I use Live 5 & Reaktor & Reason. Each one has a place to use in my productions & each one does something the other two can’t do. I would like to add that for a while there (about a year) I was using Reason exclusively & sometimes wonder why I ever changed my approach because Reason is really intuitive & easy to get into & I never had to really worry about things like CPU usage & memory allocation & all of these bizarre workaround ideas that I continually do today.

  8. sonicman Says:

    hey mortal engine… basically we are saying the same thing. Reason it’s a rock solid application & nobody’s denying that!! What I’m saying is that props should take greater attention when they bring a new soft synth or effect on every new update. As I said previously, just imagine having inside reason synths like (z3ta+ & atmosphere), and if u add an audio in, then there’s no need for rewiring, crashing problems or messing with other applications. A one-way pro solution!!!

    There’s no pissing or moaning in this add, just a recommendation that I’m sure every reason pro user wish to had!!!


  9. Mortal Engines Says:

    I do hear what you are saying but I also know that Reason has probably avoided alot of issues in favor of stability which is the backbone of their product- except for Rewire - they offer a package that operates mostly bug free & is rock solid for all practical purposes. I really don’t ever remember crashing Reason. On the other hand, my other apps (Ableton Live when running plugs like Reaktor 5 or Pluggo) run pretty well but I have to pay pretty close attention to what’s going on. Funnily enough, Reason runs pretty well with Ableton. No, it’s not the Phattest app going out there & the synths & effects can’t touch Reaktor but my Lil’ G4 sure seems happier when I use it. I have a hunch that’s what our Propellerhead friends are aiming for.

  10. gigarokka Says:

    cool, another “reason sound quality” debate. This is really good, since you can’t find any threads like this on the props board. riiiiiigggghhht. The worst part about this is that this is supposed to be a place to comment on the RDK vintage refill, that Peff and co. obviously spent many hours meticulously creating, for you to use. (for free i might add) stop hatin….

    now I do have a question about the refill. I’m really diggin the sonic treatments to the RDK kits, the only thing is I wish I knew which kit I was opening. the RDK vintage combis have a somewhat arcane naming convention, where I’m used to going for the “nigel” or the “idris” kit on the original RDK.
    Is there some documentation that states what kits the vintage combis are based on? it would be much appreciated.

  11. Peff Says:

    gigarokka: yeah, i considered adding names to the different kits, but all of the good names were taken :-p. I used the drum configuration nomenclature instead, but thanks for the feedback. I’ll keep this in mind for future patches.

    The way it works is that the numbers/letters indicate which kick, snare, toms, hi-hat, and cymbal patches are selected. Kick BD1, snare SD7, toms TM1, hi-hat HH3, cymbals CY6 = 171 36. These were not derived from the RDK Kits like Idris, etc. For example, Idris is 7C7 55. Nigel is 6A7 64.

    What you can do is open any of the VRDK patches then adjust NN-XT patches in the combinator. Just click on the patch browse buttons or right click for the popup menu and set each NN-XT to the Idris configuration:


    The only problems is that i usually tweaked eq and modulation settings for a new kit, so the results can vary depending on the patch you start with. I just tried setting the Idris configuration using the demo “Vintage RDK.rns” and it sound pretty cool. So try starting with the “Vintage RDK (ALL 472 16).cmb” patch.

  12. Jeremy Says:


    I really appreciate all of your hard work on the refill - especially the brush kits. I use them with my Zendrum and they sound terrific.



  13. WaltDe Says:

    Very good reading. Peace until next time.

  14. MajFunk Says:

    Thank you very much for this refill..Im getting closer everyday to becoming the “1972 keyboard breakbeat making master” !!! Right on !

  15. Peff Says:

    Sweet. You might have to change your name to MIDIFunk, or Clydeboard.

    uff.. i know that was bad :-p