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tapKAT & rimKAT Drum Triggers

tapKAT & rimKAT Drum Triggers

Users of KAT's drumKAT or trapKAT may be interested to learn that a couple of new accessories are available, the simplest being the tapKAT kick drum pedal. This pedal is really a modified footswitch containing a lithium battery plus a few electronic components, and it works by delivering a voltage pulse to one of the drumKAT's external trigger inputs. The low power consumption should mean that the battery will last for several years. A piece of self‑adhesive Velcro is provided to stick to the underside of the pedal, and this grips onto carpet very effectively.

Because the tapKAT is really a switch, it is not velocity‑sensitive, but then perhaps that's an advantage for some modern musical styles. Nevertheless, it's a great disappointment that the tapKAT still feels like a footswitch — it doesn't provide any of the dynamic reaction of a real bass drum pedal, so it's difficult to play fancy beats on it. I should also point out that neither of these accessories can be used with anything other than a KAT drum system.

The rimKAT seems to be identical to the poleKAT, in that it has two playing areas which may be used as two separate triggers for a drumKAT, though if you only plug into socket 1, you can use both as one large trigger surface. Again, an internal battery provides the power, but this time FSR sensors give the same dynamic response as other KAT playing surfaces. The unit is surprisingly heavy, and is constructed from sheet steel with latex rubber playing surfaces. Swivel clamps are fitted to the bottom edge to allow the rimKAT to be clamped onto the rim of virtually any size of drum.

In contrast to the tapKAT, which is a cheap and cheerful way of triggering bass drum sounds, the rimKAT is a beautifully responsive, very professional piece of kit ideally suited to anyone combining acoustic and KAT‑triggered electronic drums. Paul White