Alesis’ new rackmount percussion module lets you use onboard stored sounds or loaded sounds you’ve gathered externally. Just simply transfer the samples to an SD card and load them up — super easy to use. It’s a 1U unit with an online drum module with a bunch of sounds. Let’s take a look at the main features as well as our rating.
The limit of custom sounds on the Sample Rack is currently 32GB, which is plenty if you have a decently deep sample collection you want to use. You don’t even need to use the SD card since it has a USB cable, which is a lot easier to do than swiping a card in and out of your computer or other external device.
What we really like about this piece of equipment is the port availability. The back of the Sample Rack has eight possible triggers (similar to the SamplePad Pro which has eight pads). Also included on the back is a USB, MIDI IN & OUT, as well as a hi-hat or kick input and assignable footswitch. The thing is loaded with capabilities and that’s why we’re reviewing it so high.
The Sample Rack allows standalone play with the 10 onboard kits or is a perfect solution for drummers who are more plug-in\software based to act as a bridge from your computer to your drum kits or triggers.
What some people have said the Sample Rack lacks which should have been incorporated was that it t lacks layered sound support. You can’t have multiple samples to a given trigger, especially based on velocity. This feature is in the DM8 and DM10, something that could steer you away from the piece of equipment. We’ll leave that up to you.
Main features of the Alesis Sample Rack
- Play onboard or load your sounds via USB or SD card.
- 10 ready kits with 200+ drum sounds that are MIDI accessible
- One single rackspace design (1U)
- Eight trigger inputs in the back
- Additional kick, hi-hat and FS input on the back as well
- LCD display for navigation
- 1/4″ stereo and 1/4″ headphone outputs
- 1/8″ stereo aux input
- MIDI In and Out
Our rating of the Sample Rack
- Great trigger input flexibility
- Relatively cheap cost
- Convenient with USB or SD card use
- Lack of layered sound support (velocity)
- No USB host