I am a total beginner. Had recently bought an Alesis DM Lite edrums kit. It has 10 built in drum kits and USB Midi output. It works fine with MacBook / GarageBand.

However, individual instruments inside a kit cannot be changed from the Alesis DM Lite box. For example swap the ride cymbal with cowbell / tambourine / clap / second crash.

Did not manage to do that from GarageBand either. There is MidiPipe that allow to replace midi codes and send into GarageBand , but it is very basic.

EZDrummer, Addictive Drums and the like cost at least 200 euros and are overkill with too many features.

Is there simpler & cheaper software for beginners that allows to replace individual Midi instruments , save the "settings" and output sound?


  • MidiPipe says it has a key mapper - do the embedded kits have any mode where you can access, say, a cowbell instead of a crash by simply changing the input note; or does each kit contain only the allocated sounds, nothing else? If the latter, then you're out of luck without going for EZDrummer etc. unless there's something in Garage Band itself; some sample playback/drummer setup - then you could re-channel the sound you want to change.
    – Tetsujin
    Mar 6, 2015 at 8:48

1 Answer 1


You could try the free MT PowerDrumKit2 ( http://www.powerdrumkit.com/support.htm ), SuperDrumFX ( http://www.superdrumfx.com/ ) or any other VST/AU Instrument which supports your wanted sound. Simply google for "drum sampler". You could also use standalone software (to be used outside of GarageBand).

But you have to keep in mind that you need low latency if you want to play live. If you do not use a dedicated audio interface you could run into latency problems (or sound flickering).

If you want to record your performance, you could simply record the midi data in GarageBand and route this to a virtual instrument (like PowerDrumKit2, Addictive Drums etc.) If you do this, you can also change the sound later on by switching the virtual kit.

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