Groove Agent 5 continue on a lost way!!

Which way is GA going?

Full of hope I threw in a bunch of bucks to get the update of Groove Agent, GA 5 after having enjoyed GA 1, 2 and 3 (which doesnt work at all on a recent mac computer today since they are outdated now (which says something of the longetivity of Steinberg products). I was totally disapointed with version 4 when it arrived some years ago. I may be said that the download of the trial version didn´t work in the first place, and Steinberg now refuses to accept return of GA allthough it useless for me.
I dont know why this makes me so mad. I think it is the serious need of a true drummer plugin for the serious musician. I also know there are sensible people at Steinberg with good intentions that I dont want to hurt, but there are so much here that is nothing but kids crap.

Now 2018 I thought Steinberg ”today at least must have come to their senses” regarding GA, and took a chance to buy the update.
But no, not at all. GA 5 is just as far off for any serious musician as before. In the ads for GA5 Steinberg says it is supposed to serve many different genres. That is true only to a certain degree. I find it in practice totally mainly geared for the aspiring young teenager doing hiphop, techno, punk or whatever of similar sort. If you are looking for nuances look elsewhere my friend. This is not for someone playing drums, this is for those beating them!. The sound estethics of GA reminds me of ”as many and as hard hits per beat as possible” This is what you get evrytime you are to try out a new ”groove”, before you have manually tweaked every single button down to something more human. (it´s like evrytime you turn on the radio it has to be on full blast!)

Look at the so called ”media bay” or browser database which is an absolutely nonfunctioning system to my mind. This is maybe actually the most senseless concept of Steinberg in the whole of Steinbergs lineup, allthough the original idea might be well meaning, but it just doesn´t work, and it never really has either. It jumps from one menu to another and redraws in the spur of a second until you go mad. Still Steinberg stubbornly sticks to it. crazy! Of all the myriads of choices there is still no way to follow any logical structure in picking your genre, style, beat or part in the flow of verse or chorus. Grooves being classified by names like ” The London way”, ”young and proud” or ”College bound”. Is this for kindergarten, one might ask.

Have Steinberg not discovered that a drum hit consists of many parts where the striking agent plays an important role, the stick, hand or brush or mallet, but there are no mallets here and definetly no brushes and most drums and mixes has the same (loud” velocity. For an all round musician working in many different genres GA 5 strikes me as totally useless and a complete waste of time and money, I am sad to say. This makes me finally having had it with most things Steinberg, I doubt there will be use keeping up even Cubase on my system. GA 5 is not a serious tool to my mind. And definetely not suited for many different genres.

Clearly Groove Agent’s main strength is the incredibly well working Beat Agent workflow, which is miles ahead of everything I ever had from Maschine or Battery within Cubase. And the Media bay is a wonderful and very essential part of that first class workflow to me.

But if your main goal is acoustic drumming, the useable, but not overwhelming Acoustic Agent is not for you: as long as you can’t replace drum kit elements and have more control, it rather is an easy way of having some acoustic kits available than an overall acoustic drum solution.

So why don’t you use Superior Drummer or the likes for acoustic drumming instead, well knowing that it is made for your kind of acoustic drum set demands, instead of getting desperate with Groove Agents acoustic setup?

I guess you are right. I am just furious having spent the money in vain…

On paper Groove Agent looks great and I think it is a great tool if you know how it works. But everytime I want to do more than select a drumkit with style and use beatdesign to draw an 8 or 16 beat to study with a beat, I’m disappointed in how difficult it is to work with this piece of software. I’ve bought some extra groove packages which inspired me but that’s it. And I want to be able to select not only on style but also to measures or 8, 16 beat, shuffle, with sticks, brushes etc. And I want to be able to create own kits ands styles and save within the Groove Agent database instead of somewhere else. I guess this all should be possible if… For now I’m thinking of not upgreading Groove Agent 4 but buy another Drum Plugin which can do these things.

Groove Agent doesn’t just looks great on paper from my view.

Within Cubase 10, it works better than any other groove making tool I ever used for me (see my other post) - once I have read the manual and watched some tutorials. After that, I have left everything else I have used so far (Native Instruments Maschine 6 Kontakt, Arturia Spark, FXpansion Geist etc.) for this combination.

For acoustic drum recording, my Toontrack EZ Drummer and Superior Drummer still offer significantly more, with their more sophisticated UI, many acoustic midi grooves, and the option to replace single kit pieces by others. But that’s the only significant advantage of other products I can see so far. For groove making in actual Pop/EDMHipHop styles, I see nothing coming close to GA5/BeatAgent in Cubase 10.