How to Create a Punchy Kick Drum Sound Using Samples

Any good song needs a good kick drum. This is especially true in today's world of electronic music like dubstep and house. This article will teach you how to create a kick drum that is sure to be a thumper in the club.


  1. 1
    Gather TWO kick drum samples and one closed hi-hat sample. Make sure one kick has more bass or low-end coverage and that the other has slightly ore high-end or treble coverage.
  2. 2
    Place the kick drum samples and the hi-hat sample in your Digital Audio Workstation (DAW) all on different tracks.
  3. 3
    Add a filter VST effect to both tracks with the kick drums.
  4. 4
    On the track with the low-end kick, open the filter and create a high-shelf cutoff at around 1500 hz.
  5. 5
    On the track containing the high-end kick, open its filter and create a low shelf cutoff at around 2000hz.
  6. 6
    Mute the hi-hat track and listen to the two kick sounds being played together. !
  7. 7
    Now unmute the hi-hat track and slowly increase the volume while playing back all the tracks. The hi-hat should not be obvious, but more of a complement to the kick sounds to make them sharper.
  8. 8
    Now in your DAW's mixer or global effects section, open an envelope filter VST effect (also known as an envelope shaper) and change the attack value to 8.0, and the release value to -10.0.
  9. 9
    Now in the mixer, create a filter effect. Open it and make a low shelf cutoff at around 40 hZ. This will remove any sub bass that might detract from the overall audibility of your kick.
  10. 10
    On the same filter effect, create a parametric dip at around 200 hZ. This will remove any muddiness from your kick.
  11. 11
    Finally, create another parametric dip at around 13500 hZ, which will prevent the kick from overtaking other sounds like cymbals and higher-end claps.
  12. 12
    Either lower or raise the mixer's output volume to make a compromise between the stereo output being clipped, and the sound falling too short of being as loud as possible.
  13. 13
    Now export the kick sound as a higher-quality .wav file.


  • Experiment with other effects like compressor or the enveloper. It never hurts anyone to make your kick as punchy as possible.


  • Don't use samples you didn't buy, or samples that were not specifically distributed by the author as royalty-free. Piracy is illegal.

Things You'll Need

  • Audio software like Mixcraft, Cubase, Ableton, Logic, Garageband, Reason, or any other DAW of your choice.
  • One low-end heavy kick drum sample
  • One high-end heavy kick drum sample
  • One closed hi-hat sample

Article Info

Categories: Music Techniques