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Iriginal Reggae Midi Files


In this section, we're predominantly if not stricktly focusing on the producer of (DUB) Reggae Music. You'll find in-depth reviews of buyable software and loops/samples necessary for the construction of (DUB) Reggae music in a digital environment. For reviews of free downloadable software and sounds, go to the Download page at Studio Dubroom.






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Reason In Studio Dubroom
Studio Dubroom has a special section for owners of Reason. Find sounds, settings, stuff. It's there because the Dubroom shamelessly promotes the possibility of making Dub just with computers and Reason does the job very well!



Read a review about the T2 Phaser Rack Extension, a device that is worth much more than it's low price (15 euro).



Read Review on Reason 3.0

Click on the picture above to read our -now rather dated- review of Reason 3.0. 


Get Rebirth

In the Dubroom's September 2005 review of the Rebirth Museum, you can read all about Propellerhead's first DAW before there were such things as DAW's. Even better, you can download a full version free and legal.



Messian Dread mixes 8 audio tracks into a heavy DUB using all six FX outputs on Reason's console. A report in sight and sound.


Another original riddim and a thirty-day trial of the Synapse DR-1 Reverb Rack Extension. Tweaking THE ECHO in what became yet another fat Dub created only with Propellerhead's Reason 8.0.


Reverb and delay: the two basic effects for a Dub mix. Both effects are subject to a deeper reviewing in word, sound and sight. 
REASON 8.0: A Review For The Dub Community (Part Four: The Devices)

Click to EnlargeThe Effects

Compared to Reason 3, Reason 8 has some very interesting effects available for the rack. Some may not directly be of interest in the creation of Reggae and the mixing of DUB, but Reggae is a very absorbent form of music because it's more a rhythm than a specific genre. There will be DUB producers of the more digital variety that will take a lot of interest in some of the more exotic effects available in the DAW.

A quick glance over the effects (see right, click to enlarge) reveals that next to the RV7000 Advanced Reverb/Delay, there's the original Reason half-rack effects, too. 

Click to EnlargeThe Original Reason Effects

They've been reviewed before, but let's re-examine them just a little (click to enlarge):

The half rack devices are little useful tools. There's a chorus, flanger and phaser that do a pretty nice job, a filter and a mean EQ.

There's some more, too.

The RV7000 is one of the most important basic effect devices for the creation of Dub music. This is a very powerful reverb, fully programmable with all the necessary Reverb parameters like Gate, Hall/Plate, EQ et cetera. Although it's quality is not of the kind you can buy for the price of several Reason programs, it is definitely a top device comparable to 500$+ VST Plug-In's.

There's also Reason's well-known Vocoder and it's Scream 4 Distortion Unit. Plus the mastering tools: compression, a detailed EQ and a stereo expander. Since every channel on the console has all of these mastering tools, well, you can make your choice. 

Click to EnlargeThe Amps

Let's take a look at some of the newer effect devices. Well, they're not actually effects but since they have to be connected in the same way, they're in this category: the Amps (click to enlarge).

It goes like this: You connect the Amp between your instrument and let's say the a console channel device. This way it works exactly the same as "real" amps. And, yes, it works. We've already heard a very fine, nice and warm bass sound.

Of course you can also connect drums or other instruments you would not normally run through an amp, but then this has everything to do with being creative, finding ways to make a special sound.

The Line6 devices, by the way, are Reason Devices. They're scheduled to retire in a future version of Reason. The other two are created by a company called Softube, and come as free Rack Extensions with Reason 8.

The Audiomatic

Click to EnlargeAnother Rack Extension effect device you get for free with Reason 8.0 is created by Propellerhead and it's called "Audiomatic" (see right, click to enlarge).

The Audiomatic device doesn't have any patches to load, it just gives you 16 different options and four parameters: gain, dry/wet, volume and "transform".

What it does? Well, it transforms the input and sometimes adds a sound. Ranging from hardly noticeable to an all-wet total transformation, the Audiomatic can -next to adding a very nice vinyl effect- transform the input to make it sound like it's in a tube, or comming out out a speaker, or as a very lo-fi MP3 sound.

The reason to utilize this? It has already been done in the second Dub of this review. The sound of the drums was directed to the Audiomatic, who ran the PVC transformation in full-wet mode. This sound came back to the console and subsequently fed the reverb and echo's. This gave a very special touch to especially the rimshot.

Click to EnlargeThe Echo

Also used in the Dubs done for this review is "The Echo" (see left, click to enlarge). It's a versatile device: you can make it sound like your typical Space Echo, make Ping Pong Delays and everything else echo-related. 

Just browsing or making your own patch will give you some thing, but the real fun is in live tweaking on the filters and other buttons while you're mixing your Dub track. Play with speed and pitch, add wow and flutter tape effects: with The Echo this is as easy as it with a hardware Space Echo type device. This is perfect for spontaneous, intuitive Dub engineering.

Click to EnlargeThe Neptune

When you create this device, Reason will automatically create a sequencer track for it. 


You have to play notes in this effect's sequencer track. It will then process the input signal, which is usually a voice. After all, change the "nep" in Neptune for "auto" and you'll probably know where this device is all about. 

Indeed, this is Reason's very own Auto-Tune device even though that term is probably registered as a Trade Marked name somewhere and therefore not used.

In theory, this is the kind of device that lets you correct false notes in singing, or even change the complete melody line, add harmony voices or make special sound effects like the singer "Cher", or closer at home Michael Rose. It's highly controversial, as it's image is that of the magical machine transforming every voice carrying individual into a skilled singer.

In Dub, you'll find a way to integrate this device. Or not. It can provide you with some mystical vibes, though. An example can be heard towards the end of this review. 

Click to EnlargeThe Alligator

Sub labeled "Triple Filter Gate", the Alligator is a pattern-based filter with built-in echo and phaser. You can choose to filter Hi, Mid or Low frequencies, or a combination, and let the signal pass through, well, basically everything filter-related.

It's possible to tweak the device completely to your need, as the pattern follows the rhythm in the way you choose to. Use it's built in auxiliary echo or LFO. Even though this device is one of these more EDM-specific effects, it can -like everything- be applied somehow somewhere in a Dub mix.

Click to EnlargeThe Pulveriser

You can use the Pulveriser as a "distortion extraordinary", but it's also possible to turn the device into a filter. Using the right settings, that is. It gives you gates and rates, filters and can very likely turn that guitar into a Metal thing which goes beyond the scope of this review.

The Effects For Dub

Looking at all the effect devices together, Reason offers the obligatory ones in the right quality. The RV7000 and The Echo are two must-have effects in Dub, where effects like phasers and the console's EQ are included as well. The Neptune, Alligator and Pulveriser are intelligently designed: they offer possibilities unheard of in earlier times.

Since most effects are fully programmable while Reason lets you connect things the way you want it, it is very much possible to create your own effects out of a chain of devices. Using automation, you can tweak the effects live in the mix as far as the console itself won't let you.

The effects work very responsive, they do what they are told to do. They're of the kind of quality you can expect. 

Want more? Get Rack Extensions or use Rewire (more further on). 

Let's take a look at the devices that make the music that we want to run through the effects. The devices that let us build a riddim from scratch in Reason.

Click to EnlargeThe Instruments

Before there was Reason, there was Rebirth: Two drum computers and two monophonic synthesizers in one program. Wow! Yes, remember, this is the 1990's we're talking about. Rebirth was at the forefront of what we now know as DAW's when they released this, well DAW that could run on the typical pre-2000 computer. Quite an achievement!

Propellerhead's "pre-DAW DAW" combined Drum Computers and Synthesizers with a -primitive- sequencer, then the Swedish geniuses continued to build other instruments like Samplers and Loop Players and released Reason 1.0.

Since that first humble release, the people at Propellerhead have been and continue to be developing new instruments. When the Dubroom reviewed Reason 3.0 about a decade ago, the DAW had then been updated with a new sampler called the NN-XT and the RV7000 Reverb, for example. Both devices are now classic in their own.

In this review, we jump from Reason three straight to eight and that means a lot of new instruments. Interesting instruments. Powerful little gadgets and extremely complicated machines that let you design sound on a beyond-professional university level.

Take a look at the right (click to enlarge). On top are the classic Reason instruments, under that is the updated Dr Rex Loop Player and below that "Dr. Octorex" are the new instruments. Drum computers, Synthesizers, Samplers and a very nice module.

Let's take a look at the instruments, in a particular order.

Click to EnlargeThe ReDrum

In short: this is a pattern and sample-based drum computer. You can draw the rhythms in the sequencer or go old fashion and indeed use the patterns.

There's room for ten different samples to trigger, you can set 8&9 as "exclusive" (for Hi Hats) and the volume, length and pitch of each sample. Some channels have different options, especially when it comes to bending effects.

You don't just have to use the ReDrum for drum sounds, though. Think about loading the device with vocal samples (ad-lib's for example) and place notes at the right times in it's sequencer track. Or load guitar skanks and there's your Reggae guitarist. 

Click to EnlargeThe ID8

It's small and quickly overlooked: The ID8 Sound Module. This little device gives you piano's, organs, synths, drums, just like any other sound module will do. Every instrument comes with some effects you can put in (like a chorus), and the sound is really, really good.

The ID8 is perfect when you start up with Reason. All these complex instruments you'll find described later on in this review require a lot of study before something can be done. Building a Reggae riddim quick? You get the ID8 for everything but the drum and bass and you're on your way for sure.

Click to EnlargeThe Samplers

The NN-19 and (introduced in Reason 3) it's bigger brother the NN-XT are Reason's very own samplers. You load one, two, three, hundred samples in the device or use a patch. The sampler will become a guitar, a piano, an organ, a whatever.

Next to the ID8 and the ReDrum, the NN devices will help you quick-start when building a riddim from scratch.

Both machines have fully automatable parameters like filters and vibrato's. Wheels for pitching and other purposes are there, too. Everything is fully programmable even though simply loading a patch will give you the sounds you can't find in the ID8.

When you buy (professional) Sample Packs, like the ones you can find reviewed here in the Dubroom, chances are huge you will find NN-XT patches in some folder. A sign that yes, the NN samplers are professional in their kind.

Next to WAV, AIFF and -of course- it's device patches, the NN-XT will also read SF2 files. You're probably happy when you know what this means. When you don't, don't worry about it. It's an old sample-bank format used in ancient days.

It's possible to open an extensive program window on the NN-XT. That's where you load samples, assign keys to them and a whole lot more. In other words, you can create your very own patches with your very own samples.

Click to EnlargeThe Dr Octorex

Reason's very own loop player, successor of the Dr. Rex, can handle up to eight loops and is therefore now called the Dr. Octorex. This comes in handy, especially when you're using a set of (drum) loops to construct a full track. 

The Dr. Octorex works with it's own file formats, it won't load a standard WAV file. However, you can load a WAV file in the sequencer, open the Audio Editor and save the loop in the rx2 format on your hard drive, then open the loop in the player. In the same time, you can simply drag Dr. Octorex files directly to an audio track, bypassing the whole device.

The loop player has some powerful features, next to the pitch and tempo changes it handles very nicely. It has a very effective LFO filter you can set to different rates and amounts, while different waveforms give you the choice between several ways the filter treats itself. Whether you run horns or a bass line, this filter will definitely speak to your imagination.

Click to EnlargeThe Kong Drum Designer

The Kong. Drum designer, sampler, loop slicer, sound generator, effect device, drum computer. No, don't get too impressed by all of this. When you're just looking to use a drum computer that does a bit more than the ReDrum, you should load the Kong in your rack too.

It lets you configurate 16 pads with either up to four layers of samples per pad, or use synthesis to create a sound on-the-spot. Every pad is fully programmable seperate from the other pads. It lets you load up to two effects per pad, too. It has a couple of standard effects built-in, but you can also use other Reason effects.

You can even use the Kong as an effect device, so that you can run instruments through the internal Kong effects.

This is a central device, and not just in the creation of your own drum sounds. It's a giant-sized drum computer, and able to build a drum kit on acoustic drums sounds or direct synthesis. 

Very clever!

Click to EnlargeThe Synthesizers

With the Subtractor, the Malström and the Thor, Reason offers three different synthesizers. You can see them in the picture right (click to enlarge) in order of appearance. The Subtractor is the oldest synth in the rack, followed by the Malström  that was introduced in Reason 3.0. The one named after a Scandinavian god is the most recent and the most extensive one.

Synthesizers use one or more forms of electronic technology to generate sounds. That's about the shortest definition of synthesizers and the triplet in Reason altogether make use of all these forms.

Fortunately, all three comes with a set of patches. This means that even without any knowledge about the generation of sound using the countless of different parameters, you can get these specific sounds in your music. 

A lot of reviews on Reason are written for the producer of EDM. Electronic Dance Music. Synthesizers are the obligatory form of instrument in EDM, and a lot of expertise on the synthesizers can be found just by reading the reviews on Reason from the EDM perspective.

For this review, let's just establish these three synthesizers will provide you with some of the best forms of synthesis available. All three make use of different ways to generate and process sound -you can even use the Malström as an effect device- so when you're planning to include synthesizers, of course Reason has them.

The Instruments For Dub (Reggae)

The drum devices, samplers, loop player, synthesizer and -once again, excellent- sound module form the catalogue of internal Reason instruments. There is enough to suit everyone's needs.

You can use samples and loops for a more old-skool vibe like the Dubs in this review, grab the synths and go completely Eurodub, anything in between and beyond will go smoothly too. 

Designing your own sounds is as easy or as difficult as you want to make it, but Reason definitely provides the tools for the autodidact with devices like the Thor and the Kong. 

There's still one more instrument in the instrument section of Reason, and that's...

Click to EnlargeThe External MIDI instrument

Basically, this device integrates any MIDI enabled piece of hardware you (still) might have into Reason. Drag the device to the rack, connect your hardware's MIDI cables to the MIDI interface at your computer's sound device, do the same with the audio from your hardware and create an audio track in the console to hear your hardware in perfect sync with the rest of Reason's internal instrument.

In a way, it's a bit debatable whether the External MIDI Instrument should be part of the Instrument section in Reason. Perhaps the third category of devices would have been a better place.

Click to EnlargeThe Utilities

Without the possibility to connect instruments, to record audio input, you can't do much. That's why there is this third category. A couple of devices that lets you connect the dots and record what you're doing. 

Click to EnlargeThe Combinator

As you create your set up, things can get complicated. Things can also get so good that you might want to use specific elements of your set up in another project. 

The Combinator lets you join specific devices you connected together into one device. Good for transportation from one project to another, from one producer to another, or for sharing on the Net. 

Click to EnlargeRPG-8 Monophonic Arpeggiator

An arpeggiator creates little MIDI notes and sends them to a device, like a synthesizer. It can randomize chords and drum patters or mess up things in other ways. The thing is often used in EDM, in fact has been used since the early days of what was then called Acid House back in the previous century.

The use of it in the construction of a Reggae riddim is questionable, but there will be producers very interested in this little, well, utility.

Click to EnlargeThe Splitters and Mergers

Routing with cables at the back of the rack: a DUB Studio makes heavy use of unorthodox and alternative ways to connect devices. In fact, routing is an essential part and that's where the splitters/mergers come in very handy. 

They do exactly what they claim, just look at their backsides (click to enlarge).

Click to EnlargeThe Line Mixers

Until the main console was introduced, most of the Dub action in Reason took place on the 14-2 Line Mixer. It has four FX sends, 14 channels and a primitive EQ. No gain. The 6-2 Line Mixer has one FX send, 6 channels and one volume controller.

The Line Mixers can still be used to make your DUB, but it would be ignoring the real power in this DAW, the main console. However, it's perhaps better to look at them as a form of Splitters/Mergers with lots of extra features. 

They're ideal for the use in a Set Up as part of a complicated routing.

Click to EnlargeThe Mix Channel

Mix Channels are your gateways from the rack to the console. We discovered very early in this review, that automation at the main console can only take place when channels have their own device in the rack and their own track in the sequencer (armed for automation). Connect your device to the Mix Channel's input, insert effects when you want, create a sequencer track and that part of your set up is ready for Dub mixing.

Click to EnlargeThe Audio Track

What Mix Channels are for rack devices, are Audio Tracks for anything audio. For loops you load directly in the sequencer instead of using the Dr. Octorex, for full-length multi-track stems. The Audio Track device is a channel on the main console, automatically armed for automation. 

Click to EnlargeThe Rebirth Input Machine

The last Reason utility connects Propellerhead's first music production software to Reason. Rebirth contains two drum computers and two monophonic synthesizers you can program with a pattern based sequencer. The program is discontinued, but Propellerhead offers it now as a free download for all at the Rebirth Museum website

Just load Reason, drag the Rebirth Input Device to your rack, Start Rebirth, and everything should work.

More on RewireThe REWIRE Protocol

The Rebirth Input Machine establishes communication between Rebirth and Reason through the REWIRE protocol. This is developed by Propellerhead and Steinberg. Currently, many DAW's support Rewire. Most usually, Reason will function as a slave and the other DAW as master. 

In fact, the Rebirth Input Machine is the only way to get audio from another DAW directly into Reason. It seems that when you run the ASIO4ALL driver with a little extra thing called "ReWuschel", there are other DAW's that will feed their output through the Rebirth Input Machine. This has not been tested for this review, but getting audio from another DAW through REWIRE is a much coveted and requested feature that is currently unavailable in Reason. Officially, that is.

The way things are now, Rewire lets you connect any audio output directly to another DAW. A much used combination is Reason as a slave and Ableton's Live as a master. You open Ableton, open Reason and the two programs will work in perfect sync. This way, you can use audio from Reason and run it directly through for example a VST effect.

More on RefillsThe ReFills

Standard, Reason 8.0 ships with two huge Sound Banks. They have the file extension "rfl", which stands for ReFill. These two are not the only ReFills you can use. You can find loads on the Propellerhead website and elsewhere on the Net, the Dubroom including. There are free and commercial ones, everything you can think of.

A Refill file contains files Reason can read. Sound files but also Reason Song Files, Instrument and Effect patches, loops, you name it. A free program called ReFill Packer will let you create your own ReFill to share or sell.


Press "GET" to go to the product page at the Propellerhead Website. You'll have to register yourself and be logged in at in order to use the software the first time you run it. A free fully functional Demo is available too. 







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