How does GA4 compare to Sup Drums?

Aloha guys,

I am a Sup drum user but am really considering getting GA4
because the price is great and it would be nice
to have some new sounds/approaches in the toolbox.

I have read all the GA4 ‘blurb’.
I have watched/seen/listened to all the GA4 vids.

Before getting the trial/demo version I thought I’d ask
some real world users.

So guys, how does GA4 compare with some of the big boys?

TIA (thanks in advance)

Soundwise the acoustic drums don’t have a chance compared to superior drummer, or ezdrummer 2 with the new pop/ROCK EZX.
And when you use an e-drumkit sd is the best anyway.


I use both GA4, and EZ Drummer 2 and Superior Drummer 2. The Toontrack sets generally have a bit higher sound quality and detail IMO. The other big Toontrack plus is the VAST superiority concerning available midi groove libraries. GA4 is quite limited concerning that so far. They want to offer more packages for that in the future, but I think even the basic package should be bigger to be versatile enough for the start.

Some things are useful in GA4 though:
a) it tends to sit well in the mix right from the start
b) the degree of integration into Cubase is nice
c) you have immediate access to both acoustic and electronic sets plus percussion
d) groove browsing is well organized (though it definitely needs more stuff to find to be really useful)
This all supports a nice workflow during song creation.

Your question is a little hard to answer as they are not really 1:1 competitors. I have Superior, Ezdrummer2, Drumcore3, Addictive Drums2 and Native Instruments Studio drummer. These are in principle the same kind of vst instrument. GA4 however is a little bit different.

If you are looking for a “copy” of superior with a “better” sound, look elsewhere. If you are looking for a vst instrument that has a similar interface to superior, look elsewhere.

If you have missed some functions in superior that would make you use it in live sessions, have a look at GA4. If you want to manipulate audio files (no matter what kind) and build rhythms out of it, look to GA4. If you want to get a full drum track with intro, verse, chorus, bridge and endings up in a speed, look to GA4 (however EzDrummer 2 does this even better with the new interface).

If you rather have Steinberg do the composition work for you and don’t really want to spend much time laying down a decent drum track, go to GA4.

If you do not like reading what loops contain in respect of bpm, powerhand, and style and rather like using cryptic names like; “Lets go to the pub”, “I wet my pants” or “It is xmas time”, look to GA4.

BTW it is not true that 3. party grooves can’t be used in GA4. I have a huge library from Groove Monkee, Odd Grooves and Platinum Samples. They all work in GA4. It is not the easiest job to make them work, but fully possible, both to be used on the pads and to have GA4 play bak in Cubase. You can also build patterns from 3. party grooves and save them in GA4. I have posted a 15 page manual on this somewhere else in this forum. Not in the manual but also possible: To do the same thing with audio grooves. I have a lagre library of such from Beta Monkey and they play from the pads in GA4. However if you do not want to use this for a live session (or tweak it), there is no need of placing a groove an a pad. You would just import it into cubase directly.

With superior I think you already have the best vst instrument for drums available. Hopefully there will be an upgrade to implement the new functions of EzDrummer2. If I were to advice you, I would rather go for EzDrummer 2 than GA4. (If you do not want to chance that an upgrade of Superior is close). Or, take the money intended for GA4 and buy yourself some more grooves or a happy meal.

Drumcore4 is also “around the corner”(has been for almost a year). They are starting the beta testing as we speak. Drumcore3 was rather good and I expect a lot from 4. But it will “only” be a supplement to superior, unless they open up for 3. party grooves.

Another interesting drum software is Ministry of Rock from EastWest. The interface is more cumbersome than superior, but the sounds are great!

WOW! How kool was that!

A major ‘Mahalo’ for that report R.

You had me with your very first sentence.

I get it!!!

Personally I only deal with loops if the client requests that approach.

When doing MIDI drums I actually play each part top to bottom
the same way a drummer/percussionist would;
only since I use a MIDI guitar as a controller, I find it best to do one part at a time.
Also I rarely quantize or punch anything. I just keep playing till I get it right.

So what I need mainly is more different and varied sounds.

I will do a lil more research but it look like I will pass on GA4 for the time being
and check into the ‘Ministry of Rock’ to see if I also like living there. :slight_smile: :slight_smile: :slight_smile:

I have built some really nice sounding drums right from Steiny’s own VST Collection.

It was tedious work and took me a number of months
to find/compile/mix/layer them into kits, groups etc but they are there. And lots of them.

Tanx to all who posted.

Since you are not dependent on pre made loops you should definitely have a look at MOR. I would also like to change my recommendation on EzDrummer 2, as the new features there are more in the “loop” direction. GA4 is definitely not for you, as the main features revolves around loops and the drum quality does not beat Superior.

The only drawback I personally see with MOR is that is does not contain a loop player, but you won’t use that anyway. Think they have the same philosophy as you. There is a pretty good demonstration of some of the drums and tweak possibilities on youtube. Just search for Ministry of Rock Drums and you will find part 1 and 2. Use good speakers when listening.

Still , if you want to use loops, the whole range of Groove Monkee has been mapped for MOR.

MOR also have good samples of bass and guitar. I have mostly used drums as I like to play the bass and guitar myself. PLAY is normally heavy on the CPU though. You will understand why when you see all the samples being used.

You also have the possibility of using all the great wav files out there on drums and build your own set in samplers like Kontakt, but I guess you know that already. Still I don’t think this method will beat the quality of MOR (especially on the velocity and flam sample side) but might be cheaper. And there might be some special sounding wav files out there if you are looking for a more “outside the box” kind of thing.


Thanks again R.

I love this board.

There are so many knowledgeable/kool folk
(like you and all who posted in this thread)
that hang here and I appreciate (and use) it all the time.

Always something to learn.

Since we already have entered the “outside the box” topic.

If you want your drums to sound a little special here are some suggestions (some of you will already know them but there are perhaps someone who have not been presented to the idea):

  1. Use distortion, especially on snare and cymbals. Specially recommended are the plugins “Trash2” by iZotope and “Saturn by” FabFilter. “Camel Crusher” is a simpler alternative. (Think that one is free?).

  2. Use reverb creatively. Specially recommended are the convolution reverbs (Impulse Responses) from FFS called “Rhythmic reverb”. Here the drums will get sound flavor from the reverb, like metallic, rubber…

Put the reverb and/or distortion on a separate send track in the mixer and you can get everything from subtle changes to almost unrecognizable drums by using the amount of send. Subtle is perhaps more for pop/rock and the other end for Hip Hop and such.

Depending on your need in terms of drums, another nice drum machine to look at is MDrummer (Large) which exist in 64-bit and VST3 format. They (Melda Production) have a fantastic update schedule and really awesome feature set.