Getting Started With Handy Drums Plugins – LOGIC PRO

To get going quickly with Handy Drums plugins, first, make sure that you have installed the plugins you intend to use.

Before using the software, you must authorize it by entering the serial number (license key) you received with your purchase. Here is how to authorize Handy Drums. Alternatively, you can run our plugins in a FREE TRIAL mode.

Handy Drums Plugins: What they are and what they are not #

Handy Drums are virtual drum instruments. They can be used as plugins inside DAWs or as standalone apps. Think of Handy Drums primarily as sound modules that can be played live using a MIDI controller or by routing MIDI loops into them. They are the software equivalent of acoustic drums and percussion instruments and, as such, require a “performer” to play them (either a human being or MIDI loops).

We designed Handy Drums to be straightforward to use and to give you a beautiful, produced, finished drum sound right from the get-go.

They can also be used as standalone apps on Windows and MacOS computers. In that case, you can either play them live using MIDI controllers (eg. electronic drums) or by playing loops directly inside them using the built-in MIDI Loop Browser (Handy Drums v2.0+ only).

Handy Drums are not drum machines.

How To Load Handy Drums Virtual Instruments In Logic Pro #

In Logic, virtual instruments are loaded into “Software Instrument Tracks.”

To load a virtual instrument into a Software Instrument track, under the main menu select:

Track>New Tracks and then select the Software Instrument button.

Then, under the “instrument” drop-down menu navigate to the AU Instruments menu toward the bottom, select GoranGrooves and your desired, previously-installed Handy Drums instrument.

You can choose between a stereo setup (ideal for a quick programming/writing session), or multiple outputs (for a more serious and extensive mixing session).

NOTE: If selecting Stereo setup, under “output” make sure that some active output is selected (such as the default output 1+2) in order to hear the sound from the plugin. If no output is selected, the plugin may not be audible.

Audition the loaded Handy Drums plugin #

To ensure that the Handy Drums plugin and sample library are installed correctly and connected and working properly, click on the drum and percussion icons above the faders on the plugin’s GUI. The level meters will illuminate, indicating that the sample library is properly connected and working. You should also hear the sounds of individual instruments as you press the icons.

If the Handy Drums GUI doesn’t automatically open up like in most DAWs, look for the blue settings button in the Handy Drums insert location slot on the left-hand side and click on it. This will bring up the GUI for Handy Drums.

Playing a Drum Loop Through Handy Drums #

To play a drum groove through the Handy Drums plugins, you will need to drop an existing MIDI drum loop onto a Software Instrument track with the Handy Drums instrument loaded (as previously described), or create a loop from scratch right on your Software Instrument track.

There are a couple of ways to import an existing midi loop into Logic.

Option 1: Find the loop you want to import using “finder” on your Mac.

Have a logic window open in the background and drag the desired loop directly onto your software instrument track and into a desired position on the timeline.

You can choose whether to use the tempo from the midi track or your project. In most cases, it would be wise to use the project’s tempo especially if you already have some existing tracks in your project.

Option 2: Import MIDI loops using the Import function.

From the top menu, select File > Import > MIDI File, browse to your desired loop, and click import.

Logic will again ask about tempo as before.

The midi file will be imported but will likely be placed on a new track that does not contain Handy Drums. You will need to manually drag the imported loop onto your Handy Drums Software Instrument track.

Audition MIDI Loops Before Importing Into DAW Project #

Beginning with Handy Drums v2.0, all plugins and standalone apps come with a built-in MIDI Loop Browser. This allows you to browse and audition any drum loops on your system and then import them via simple drag-n-drop.

In addition to previewing and importing MIDI loops, the functionality can also bookmark any folders or loops for quick access. It can also sync tempo and playback controls with your DAW and allows you to play MIDI files inside Handy Drums without the need for a DAW.

The dedicated document covers the MIDI Loop Browser in detail. Make sure to read it to fully take advantage of its capabilities.

Enabling Plugin’s Multiple Outputs inside Logic Pro X #

In Logic, if you have previously loaded a Stereo version of the plugin, click on the plugin’s arrow menu in the inspector, go to the top of the menu of the currently loaded Handy Drums plugin, and reload a “multi-output” version of the plugin.

NOTE: If you later decide to change back to the Stereo version, you may need to reroute any components that were routed to outputs other than 1-2 in order to hear any sound.

For individual Handy Drums instruments (eg. kick, snare, hats…) to be outputted to any output other than the default stereo 1-2, they must be routed inside the plugin’s GUI after the multiple output connections have been enabled inside Logic.

Shown here in Cubase but with identical functionality in Logic Pro.

Now that everything works well, let us dive deeper into Handy Drums features and functionalities.