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Poise is the BEST mpc style drum sampling software available

Poise is the BEST mpc style drum sampling software available

You know I’m always looking for the best tools, that get out of the way and let you work.

One of my gripes with the current choice of drum sampling software is their inability to understand how simply we want to layer sounds.

Many folks just want to drag a sound to a pad, then another, and another, and have instant access to each layer to tweak and create new composite sounds.

Unfortunately, many of the products out just don’t get that. Most make you go deep into the keymapping setup to layer sounds on the keys, or they don’t allow layering at all, or it’s so complicated you just say forget it and just play each sound on it’s own, layering “in sequence”!

Enter Poise…from an independent developer one small clue…someone who, like me, must have been fed up with the current crop, bloat, and “just don’t get it” operation of the majority of software drum samplers out now.

What we need is something  that’s simple, cost effective, lean, clean…and to the point.

So what is Poise?

In my mind, poise is the drum sampler we’ve all been looking for.

Poise is what I would make if I could write software….

Poise is a simple, 16 pad drum sampler that lets you quickly add layers, manipulate the layers, and come up with new sounds.

Poise is NOT a sequencer.  You can NOT sample into it.

from the site:

Direct, straightforward, no frills and no bloat! Poise aims to make working with drum samples quick and painless, allowing you to focus on making music.

sounds good to me, so good I had to keep it under wraps until I could actually SHOW you what it did.  It’s not new, it’s been around, but I just found out about it and I know many of you will love it, because I get the same questions from folks looking for an easy drum sampler that let’s you layer your drums quickly and tweak each layer.

Why I think Poise “gets it”

Why do I think it’s the best? Let me list the reasons.

  • It’s easy to layer sounds, just drag them onto the pad, and a layer number will appear in the window
  • layers can be played in round robin, layered, or velocity switching mode
  • You can have up to 16 outpus, enough to send each pad to it’s own track in your daw if you want
  • It’s easy to setup to work with your midi controller
  • You can have note on or oneshot mode for your samples
  • It has mono mode, so you can get down like on your hardware, making pads cut each other
  • You also have “cut groups” so you can set pads to cut each other off
  • You can link pads… so you can quickly layer multiple sounds just by linking the pads together
  • You can save your own kits quickly
  • You can tweak aeach layer on a pad separately or together
  • you can use wav, aiff, or mpc snd format sounds
  • It’s lean and cpu efficient
  • It’s 49 bucks

What about the interface, is it easy to use?

Very easy, very clean, very straight forward, and very intuitive.

It has everything you need to layer and play with your samples, and nothing you don’t.

No sequencer screen that you won’t use getting in the way.

No complex menus of keygroups and mapping to mess with.

16 pads, each with 8 layers, knobs to tweak each layer/sound…and not much else.

right-clicking on a pad let’s you access things like note on/oneshot mode, or mono mode, pad linking, etc.

It’s really simple, and everything you would try to do naturally, it just does it…this is the way a simple drum sampler should be…not a bunch of bells, whistles, and balloons.

So you really like it huh?


This plugin is 5 subs all the way around in my honest opinion…I could hardly contain myself when I found out about it.

Try it and tell me it’s not what you’ve been looking for. You can layer, edit start and end points of samples, send each pad to it’s own output in your daw for simple tracking….tweak each layer, save your kits….really what else do you need in a drum sampler?

I honestly, so far, can’t think of anything I would change about it. It does what it needs to do…allow quick playing and manipulation of samples.

check it out at One Small Clue, download the demo, and see for yourself.

let me know what you think of course, leave a comment below.

113 Responses to “Poise is the BEST mpc style drum sampling software available”

  1. how would you compare this to battery? which one would u say was better

    • saintjoe says:

      they are both good, I like this one better for what I’d use it for. It’s simple, and let’s me layer drums quickly, allowing me to tweak them on each layer quickly.

      I have battery and tons of other programs, but they all left me searching for something quicker, easier, and cleaner.

      this is it, in my opinion.

    • Abdul says:

      Saintjoe, I have a question. How do you assign Poise pads to fl studio mixer.

      • saintjoe says:

        @Abdul, should be like any other vst, I don’t use flstudio so I’m not 100% sure on routing in there. it should be the same way you route any other multi output plugin in fl

        • Abdul says:

          @saintjoe, How do you route multi output plugin

          • saintjoe says:

            @Abdul, I don’t use flstudio, you need to check the documentation for fl to figure that one out. I think you can pull up the channel panel and there are some settings in there for you to tell it where to route to.

            • Abduul says:

              @saintjoe, Thanks very help full

              • Blak McGuyVaH says:

                @Abduul, use it in a host app such as cubase, pro tools etc… use the vst on a instrument track bus the individual tracks from the seperate outs on the vst from each instrument track.. bus it to separate audio tracks in the host.

                • saintjoe says:

                  @Blak McGuyVaH, yeah he’s using flstudio, he should be able to do it in there, I just don’t use flstudio so can’t say exactly but I know you can route audio outputs in there.

  2. Warriorbeats says:


    That is the sickest drum sampler I have ever seen. I just got Sampla from Sonivox and it’s the closest to simple out their besides Poise. Poise is still worth it I’m going to get it. Just a side note for people who can’t play chords Sampla has a mapping feature were can assign chords to a pad.

  3. umajor says:

    is this better than the virtual beat thang?

    • saintjoe says:

      they aren’t even close, beat thang virtual is an actual beat machine with sounds, fx, and a full sequencer. it’s really it’s own little environment for making beats.

      Poise is a vst plugin, it requires a host to run it in, and it doesn’t sequence.

      they are two different tools in my opinion

    • Jimba Frosty says:

      Though beatthang is full of glitches and bugs do NOT get it. u can just google it for ur self and see its bs. but yes poise and beatthang are diff

      • saintjoe says:

        I wouldn’t say it’s bs, I’d say it’s like many programs when they first come out, it needs work. But it’s not the same as this one, it’s not even a vst yet.

  4. MONEY-BOY says:

    sounds like what we been waiting on..i will surely check it out..thanx for the review saint joe

  5. Hood says:

    dope. need it for MAC and i’d make it crack

  6. Terrence says:

    I beta tested Poise (still do) for the developer (Shannon) and your right strangely enough it stands alone by it self in simpliciy and functionality. When I’m not using BPM its Poise all day.

    • saintjoe says:

      Yeah man, Shannon is cool peeps and I agree, it’s alone. I think bpm/maschine are different because they are really their own sequencing environment and allow you to do everything in their program if you wish.

      this is a simple device that fits into most daw workflows…and does what ya need.

  7. Madbull1971 says:

    That VST is pretty sweet! Very simple interface and looks like it would be real easy to tweak my drum samples with (love the round-robin feature) and I’m glad that it is a vst and not a standalone app because my workflow is tied primarily to my DAW so this works for me. And the price it right too!!! I’ll have to pick that up.

    Thanks for the heads up man.

    • saintjoe says:

      yeah man! it’s very simple and moves seamlessly into any daw environment that takes vst plugins. I really like how quick and simple it is. I have a lot of drum samplers, but this is what I wished they operated like.

      He’s still developing it so it will get better, but right now it’s already dope in my opinion.

  8. tony says:

    all i got say is sold good lookin out keep up the good work oh , will you be doing any brass or horn section reviews soon i could really use some input on some real good sounding stuff holla a ya boi

  9. SeldomSeen says:

    Looks Cool / Nice review
    But I guess I show my age in saying I think the hands on-(Hardware) is much better. I have not used it but I have a MPC2500 w/ JJOS and it is untouchable in my opinion…

    • saintjoe says:

      It’s all good…I have a 4k, I love Maschine cuz it’s the best of both worlds. But some just want a simple sampler that can layer, I think this is it.

  10. meconeproductions says:

    saintjoe you are a breath of fresh air man im really glad i ran into your site! i love the updates,but yeah this is very dope! & for the price excellent too!

  11. CJTheMaestro says:

    Hey bro is this just a vst or is it also an rtas plugin. because I work with ProTools. Looks and sounds good…lol

  12. You Off Tha Chain Wit tha New Newz Cuz Stay Smooth Wit It God Bless your Werkz…

  13. SIR JAY says:


  14. Metatron72 says:

    I’m like you Joe, I got Battery, Guru, Live Drum Racks etc. While Poise doesn’t do anything these can’t, it sure cuts to the chase quicker. I remember using the beta demo awhile back, but this one has a much nicer GUI. Truth be told I was gonna get it but just forgot all about it. I just went to get the demo, but got the bandwith exceeded message. I think your review might have something to do with that (haha)
    I hope you find more independent software like Poise to feature here as these small developers usually ‘get it’ like you said. Also they’re going against corporations so they need the exposure.

    Thanks for another solid review.

    • saintjoe says:

      Yeah man…when I saw it, I KNEW many folks like me would love it.

      I mean, those other apps are cool, for what they do. But if I got my drums already and I just want to layer quickly…this is the tool. It’s just so simple to come up with new sounds.

      Not even drums, you can use it for loops, riffs, chops, whatever… I’m lovin it.

      Man…I didn’t mean to get his bandwidth limit! I hope he’s getting some customers out of it too!

  15. steezo! says:

    Dope review Joe! Software looks pretty fresh man.
    You could totally assign your outputs to how u see fit, set your click track, press record and just track directly into your daw, then mix your joint later. Pretty cool man.

  16. teck says:


    • saintjoe says:

      whasup teck…nah you can’t use this with Reason, you need a vst host like flstudio, ableton, sonar, cubase, reaper, etc.

      Maschine is dope, I love it and I’m an old mpc head…I also plan on rockin with the beat thang hardware once it drops…I think they are two different tools, one you can take with you the other requires the computer.

      if you’re trying to decide between Maschine and beat thang virtual it depends on what you want to do. The prices for btv is definitely attractive, but Maschine has that hands on feel that many hardware cats like myself crave.

      I have both, and use them for different reasons, btv gives me a different vibe than when working in other apps. That said…I don’t think anything on the market at the moment is really touching Maschine.

  17. Kruz says:

    Good looking tool….Need it for Mac though.

  18. jooney dubz says:

    Thanks for droppin this review.I am gonna check out the demo.

  19. DAVID says:

    is it standalone??

  20. d.hyde says:

    Most def, I’m downloading the demo now!

  21. d.hyde says:

    Windows only?
    Could I use it in the Kore player?

  22. Mehdo says:

    looks like that might be dope have to check it out thanks for the info. Hey have you done a BPM review yet.

  23. Xichael says:

    You’ve definitely got me interested. The question is, why not just use Live’s Drum Racks?

    • saintjoe says:

      No doubt…I do use drum racks, but have you ever tried to quickly layer a sound in lives drum racks? It’s not as quick as this, they layers aren’t setup the same. If you just drag a sound onto another it will replace it.

      That’s why i think this one is simple but useful. It would be dope if drum racks worked the same way, because they are pretty useful already.

      • Xichael says:

        If you alt+drag a sample to a pad it gets layered. One of Live’s many modifier key tricks.

        Think I might pick up Poise for my adventures in other DAWs though.

        • saintjoe says:

          oh snap!!! lol, thanks yo lol…I never knew that at all! Gonna have to try it out man! lol

          good stuff

        • saintjoe says:

          Tried it out, it works pretty coo…it’s still alot of steps involved to get in and tweak your sounds. You gotta alt + drag, then open the device chains, not bad…but definitely not as quick and simple as Poise. But it’s def good to know that tip for ableton, may have to do a video on it.

          I just like how you can just drag stuff into poise pretty much without even thinking about it or having to remember any keystrokes to do it, and it automatically layers it for you. The settings for each layer and everything is all right up front, no menus to expand or anything.

          It doesn’t do anything revolutionary, it just does something we love, in a simple way.

          drum racks are still dope tho in their own way, you can do some freaky stuff with em.

          thanks for the response yo, gonna have to explore some more.

  24. Erby says:

    Whats up bro? Is there going to be a Mac version?

  25. KILLAHCANE says:

    What is the difference between the demo version and the full version.. The demo version looks complete to me..

    • saintjoe says:

      I think it’s just time limited or something, but it’s the full thing. I can’t remember what the difference was, I’m sure it was something like time or how long you could use it.

  26. GreatScott says:

    This is the truth man!!!!I just bought it a week or so ago and i been on it real heavy.Thanks for putting everybody up on it Joe.Plugin of the year!!!!

  27. KILLAHCANE says:

    *Update* The Demo only allows you to run one Poise at a time.. and you also can’t save your drum Kits with the Demo. After a few weeks.. I had to break down in buy it.. its ease was a hit in improving my workflow. Thanks again saintjoe!

  28. KILLAHCANE says:

    Oh!.. FYI everyone.. You can record in a track within your DAW and drag your sample directly into Poise.. Talk about EASY INSTANT SAMPLING… In Reaper it is control + alt while dragging into Poise…

  29. Andrew says:

    PC Only!!!???

  30. Andrew says:

    Dang. Does it have articulations?

    • saintjoe says:

      @Andrew, nah not really, it’s not too advanced but simple and to the point which is why many enjoy it. There’s a few options in there, but nothing like battery or anything.

  31. Nym says:

    i’ve been using and testing poise since 2008. i vouch for this review’s accuracy and enthusiasm. the developer is one sharp dude.

    poise is great standalone, but i love using it as an extra daw based-layering tool for my mpc.

    probably my favorite VST plugin, ever.

  32. guy who makes music says:

    i would love it if an AU/ Audio unit came out and im pretty sure many other mac/ logic users would love to buy it if that was the case. please i beg you to make an Audio unit version of this, it looks awsome beyond any imagination!

    • saintjoe says:

      @guy who makes music, yeah I know many would love that, may go over to his site and see whasup, but last time I checked no mac version was planned.

      • roxmooth says:

        @saintjoe, I need something like this for a mac!!!! i have Battery but because of my set up i cant use it..(white screen) native instruments problem..Im in no position to completely update my set up because 2 of my plugins wont work..By they way they are legit copies!!! I really need something like this asap or like the free computer music 202 they used to give out..any help would be appreciated!!!

  33. suckafree says:

    this is GARBAGE, their’s nothing like the mpc

    • saintjoe says:

      @suckafree, you probably never used one in your life lol, this is one of the best and most simple programs for drum layering. I used an apc for years, I know how it compares.

  34. PoiseUserNow says:

    I tried the demo and the demo is already generous, but it’s clear this software is really really fun and easy to use. It reminds me of what I like about hardware drum machines, but with all the advantages of software.

  35. Pavel says:

    Is there anything out there as good as this or similar for Mac?

  36. KILLAHCANE says:

    Just updating everyone.. There is a beta of Poise out now that has some nice new features, such as midi mapping of the start and end loop points … etc. Check it out!

  37. Faness says:

    yo st. joe can u do the 16 levels pitch shift on the poise and also I really need
    you to do a review on a similar product sonivox pulse comes out nov 1st check out the vids at sonivox’s web site

    • saintjoe says:

      @Faness, I don’t think pulse does 16 levels I’ll have to check, I saw Pules, I’ll probably do a review on it. Pulse can be used by itself but Poise needs to be in a host.

  38. Echo says:

    I say just purchase Reason 5 and use Kong! Which as a drum sampler, kills Poise, though Poise is really slick too. Just my biased opinion.

    • saintjoe says:

      @Echo, poise is 50 bucks, how much is reason? lol…and poise is a vst, reason isn’t, we are really talking about two different products totally.

      but it’s all good :) Reason is cool too!

  39. GrangeGorman says:

    Hi everyone and Thanks SaintJoe for all the useful info. Just downloaded a Demo Poise and I have no Sample editor, is that correct or have I got a bug ?
    Also, after reading the manual I find no info on regards to make a PAd Loop-play a sample ( as in non stop playing or continoous One shot ?)

    thanks indeed

    The GG. FranceJ

  40. GrangeGorman says:

    PS: In Sonar4 ( the no sample editor bug)

  41. GrangeGorman says:

    Ps2: shit.. Im embarrassed …
    I found the sample editor….
    : )

  42. Joseph says:

    Does Poise come as a RTAS and can you Chop samples with it?

    • saintjoe says:

      It’s only a vst and not really made to chop samples though you can adjust start/end points of the samples. If you’re looking more for something to chop samples checkout Maschine, BPM, or Geist

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