You are here

Reason's Kong Drum Machine

Reason Tips & Techniques By Simon Sherbourne
Published January 2023

Screen 1: Kong’s internal modular instrument structure has many hidden gems that you can use to build authentic analogue‑style drum machines.Screen 1: Kong’s internal modular instrument structure has many hidden gems that you can use to build authentic analogue‑style drum machines.

Join us as we delve into the hidden mysteries of the Kong drum machine.

We’ve covered the mechanics of Reason’s Kong drum machine in the dim and distant past, but I’ve recently been exploring some of the interesting sound creation features of its integrated synth and sample modules, and wanted to share.

Boss Drum

Kong is Reason’s primary drum instrument, coexisting happily with the classic Redrum drum machine. Kong is much like an MPC or Maschine drum program, with a 4x4 pad grid triggering independent channels, each with its own synth or sampler‑based module and effects chain. Redrum, on the other hand, is modelled after classic beatboxes with an internal pattern‑based sequencer.

You’d be forgiven for assuming Kong is a simple sample‑based drum kit. However, if you click the Show Drum & FX button at the bottom to reveal the inner workings of each pad, you’ll see there’s a lot more going on.

It’s quite easy to miss the complexity and versatility of Kong’s design when looking at its primary (and slightly drab) view in the Rack. There’s a generic settings panel for the selected pad over to the left, and some complicated looking options over on the right. You’d be forgiven for assuming Kong is a simple sample‑based drum kit. However, if you click the Show Drum & FX button at the bottom to reveal the inner workings of each pad you’ll see there’s a lot more going on.

Each pad can be powered by one of nine different sound modules, some sample‑based and some synths. Each channel also has two insert FX slots that can be populated from the pool of nine effects modules. Two additional slots house Bus and Master FX modules. Seasoned Reasonistas will probably be familiar with this not‑so‑secret part of Kong, but did you know there are two additional mini‑synth modules that can be used in any pad, or that you can set up trigger variations for many of the modules?

Inner...

You are reading one of the locked Subscriber-only articles from our latest 5 issues.

You've read some of this article for free, so to continue reading...

  • ✅ Log in - if you have a Subscription you bought from SOS.
     
  • Buy & Download this Single Article in PDF format £1.00 GBP$1.49 USD
    For less than the price of a coffee, buy now and immediately download to your computer or smartphone.
     
  • Buy & Download the Full Issue PDF 
    Our 'full SOS magazine' for smartphone/tablet/computer. More info...
     
  • Buy a DIGITAL subscription (or Print + Digital)
    Instantly unlock ALL premium web articles! Visit our ShopStore.

RECORDING TECHNOLOGY: Basics & Beyond
Claim your FREE 170-page digital publication
from the makers of Sound On SoundCLICK HERE

Buy Related Tutorial Videos

  • The Combinator 2 Explored
  • Reason Explained and Explored
  • Layers
  • Mixing and Mastering Rig V3 - Explored
  • Backline Rig V3 - Explored
  • Grain's Granular Synthesis Explored
  • Europa Demystified
  • What's New in Reason 10