In the Drummer ITP app, there are a few metronome settings to help you find the specific click sound which helps you the most when practicing. To activeate the Settings page just hit the Settings button at the bottom left of the main screen.
Firstly, the metronome in Drummer ITP always counts with the click sound on every beat. You can adjust the musical pitch of the click and interval notes from A5 (frequency = 880 Hz) through the musical octave to A6 (1760 Hz). Some people prefer a higher pitch click, whereas others prefer it to be lower, it also depends on the sound of your practice pad and the noise level in your practice room which may help you decide what settings to use for the click. You can change the tonality of the click from a dull thud to something more musical with harmonic overtones. Equally, you can extend the click duration so it resonates for longer, or shorten it to be quite snappy! The volume of the click can be set here too (but remember overall volume is also set by the device’s normal volume buttons too!).
In drumming and percussion, we count notes between the beats, and play in between the beats too. The main click beats can be referred to as ‘quarter notes’ or ‘quarters’ (or ‘crochets’ in more musical terms) because there are often four in every phrase or bar, but these can be further sub-divided too. When using ‘eighths’ we subdivide each quarter note in two, so we get two clicks in every beat (a ‘quaver’ in musical terms). With ‘triplets’ we divide each beat into three notes, and with ‘sixteenths’ (or ‘semiquavers’) we divide each beat into four notes. The easiest way to understand this is to select one of the Beat Division buttons and listen to the difference. To make it even more obvious, you can change the pitch of the division notes to the main click pitch, and change the volume too. This is valuable to keep the main beat click very obvious and the divisions clearly differentiated.
It’s useful to adopt a good counting system with the different beat divisions, as follows (for a 4-beat pattern):
It’s generally harder to play in time with the beat divisions switched off, but a good drummer should be able to play to a click on the beat and ‘feel’ the divisions with their own timing control – an internal human clock so to speak! But it’s useful to have the divisions switched on as a beginner and when using very slow tempos, either way, the choice is yours.
Additionally, in manual mode, it’s possible to switch off the ‘Interval Analysis’, which means that only the accuracy of your hits on the beat are used in the calculation. So with Interval Analysis switched off, you can play a swing style or experiment with pushing and pulling your hits on the intervals, and you’ll only be penalised if you are out of time on the 1, 2, 3 or 4 beat counts. It is also possible to set a pronounced or accented ‘beat one’ sound to the metronome, and then use this setting to designate how many beats are in a bar (accessed in Drummer ITP App Settings menu).
Download Drummer ITP in the iPhone App Store