The SR 16 is a legendary drum machine used by musicians for the better part of over 30 years, and new users are adopting the unit every single day. Often, one of the first things that a new user will fall in love with is the sound of the preset grooves and wonder "How can I adapt this to my workflow?". This guide will cover how to adapt factory patterns for your own uses. It will mainly cover the SR16, but when there is a deviation for the SR18 we will note it.


Copying Preset Patterns

Preset Patterns on the SR drum machines cannot be edited from their factory state. If there is something that needs to be adapted, the first step you are going to need to do is to make a copy of the factory kit. 

  • First, call up the pattern on your machine, and make sure it is set to the specific pattern you want to copy(A, B or Fill)
  • Second, press and hold the copy button
  • Press the up or down arrows, which will put you into the user preset numbers. Navigate to a number that you know is empty
  • On the SR16, press the PLAY button. On the SR18, press the RECORD button. You will receive a message stating the copy was successful for as long as the button is held down. You can now let go of the copy button.
  • Press the Preset/User button to navigate over to your User kits, and then navigate over to your kit that you have copied.

Editing Your Pattern(SR 16 setup)

From here, there will be one extra step for the SR 16, and that to press the Perform/Compose button and turn the machine into compose, which will allow you to edit your pattern. This quick step is not needed for the SR 18, as patterns can be edited as soon as they are copied over.

Record Setup Editing

Your pattern of beats can be edited from here. Outside of the actual Pattern itself, here's a few other basic things you may want to edit on the groove that are beyond simple recording and dubbing, which can be accessed through the Record Setup Menu

  • First, you're going to want to enter the record setup menu and use the Page buttons on the far right to navigate this menu
  • From here, the most popular bits to edit are the length/start(SR16 only) of the pattern. The length of the pattern will cut off the end of the beat, while the start will cut the beginning of the beat to allow you to start after the beginning. Simply navigate to these pages and enter a value for how long you want the beat to be and where you want the beat to start using the number buttons(Must be a 3 digit increment like 004 or 120) or the arrow buttons.
  • The second most popular edit is naming the pattern you have edited. This can be done from here so that you can differentiate it from other user/preset patterns
  • Finally offset is a way of humanizing the beat if you want to simulate being behind the beat.
  • When done editing, press the Play Button(SR 16)/Record Button(SR 18) before pressing Record Setup to exit this screen and get back to your screen.

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