How to use Drone Tools 2 in any MainStage template

How to properly install and use Drone Tools 2 (DT) by Stephen Sherwood, in any MainStage 3 concert. Please click on a picture to see it full-size. This tutorial assumes you have intermediate skill with MainStage 3, and can follow instructions well.  Make sure to make a backup of your original concerts in case something goes wrong, so you can start over.

We recommend using the Drone Tools 2 template to build your patches in, rather than having to go through the work in this tutorial!

Products used in the tutorial:
Drone Tools 2
MainStage 3.3.2

Step 1.

Open 2 concerts, Drone Tools 2.concert and the concert file you want to put DT into. You may get the message "Do you want to close the current concert before opening a new concert?", choose "Don't Close". They should be both open, either next to each other or overlapping.

Step 2.

Go to layout view in the DT concert, select the Drone Tools controls, and copy them (Edit menu >  Copy). Switch to the new concert, arrange the existing onscreen controls to make space for the DT controls, then paste (Edit menu > Paste).

Step 3.

Switch to Edit mode in the DT concert file, and click on the concert name in the patch list to go to concert level. Select the 3 busses: Drone Tools 2Drone Tools FX Bus, and DT Output, and copy them (Edit menu > Copy). Switch to the new concert, click on the concert name in the patch list to go to concert level. Click in the channel strip area to make it active, and paste the busses (Edit menu > Paste). Click Create if prompted to do so, and the busses should now show on the right side.

Step 4.

Now let's map all of the onscreen DT controls. All of the Drums Pads should be mapped to:  Drone Tools 2MIDI NotesC2C#2D2E2, etc etc. Make sure no other notes are mapped, if so delete them.

Step 5.

Assign the fader to: Drone Tools 2 > Volume, and set Range Max to 0. Assign the volume meter to: Drone Tools 2 > Level.

Step 6.

Assign the Octave Knob (top left) to: Drone Tools 2 > Scripter > Transpose. Assign the Intervals Knob (bottom left) to: Drone Tools 2 > Scripter > Intervals Played. Assign the Cutoff Knob (right) to: DT Output > Channel EQ > Hi Cut Frequency. Assign the Button to two values: Drone Tools 2 > Scripter > Bypass and Drone Tools 2 > EXS24 > Bypass. (Make sure the button Bypass are set to Invert, this will make the button right up when DT is active.)

Step 7.

Double-check and make sure everything is properly assigned. Then, give it a try! 

Step 8. (Troubleshooting)

If the pad sound changes to piano or anything else, easily put it back. Go to the EXS24 preset list and navigate to:  Factory > Synthesizers > Synth Pads > Softpad 1

Prevent the drum pads from playing your main keyboard, by making sure your  Hardware Input > MIDI Port does not say All. Set it to your keyboard name in the drop-down list.

If you have any other questions, send us a message!

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