Hi, good thread.
The new production grooves have some very nice routing set-ups and I’d recommend exploring some of those and then using similar set-ups for the kit you have. Of all the content updates that came with Pro 9, the Production Grooves have been a really good part of the package for me. I use the stock kits as templates for some of my own and like a few of them as is.
Groove Agent, even the basic SE version I use, is amazingly flexible in terms of routing the outputs. A single MIDI drum track with multiple instruments (a full kit) can be routed so that each sound corresponds to an outpurt bus (up to 16). One can then render each track for individual stems or the entire set of outputs may then be sent to one or more Group tracks. I’d recommend using GA in conjunction with the Yamaha kit if possible. If possible, assign the kit’s trigger pads to match notes in a GA “pre-wired” kit from Production Grooves. This might yield some very useful and interesting sounds.
By using Dissolve, By Pitch, you can take a full kit MIDI drum track and have Cubase automatically create individual MIDI tracks for each Pitch. It will take time to get used to all the routing going, but stick with it and you’ll find it becomes easier.Cubase is a high-end DAW and as such it does have a rather daunting learning curve. However, the effort in learning it will lead you to being able to make some great sounds.
Lastly, there’s the issue associated with mixing sounds of in very different frequency ranges. A drum kit has one one of the widest set of frequency ranges for the engineer to deal with. From deep bass drums and toms to high sizzling cymbals, to the challenges of the sharp transient peaks, which we love but can be very tricky to control, the drum kit is one of the most challenging of all the instruments to record well. So, some of the overly loud or overly quiet issues may have to do with the non-linear response of human hearing. Investigate the Equal Loudness Contour, which is also sometimes called by its older name, Fletcher-Munson curve. Monitoring at low levels, 90 dBSPL or less may help.
There’s some interesting worldflow ideas in the thread and I’d try to incorporate some of what’s been suggested and see how works out.
Good luck and, again, thanks to all for the posts.