DopeVST Crate Digger review

Hip-hop performance plugin

  • £60
  • $99
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Our Verdict

If old-skool hip-hop is in any way your flava, this is essential.

Pros

  • Samples are gorgeous. Classic hip-hop sounds. Functional interface.

Cons

  • GUI could be more innovative.

Ultimately a novel way of turning a one-shot sample library into a 'performance' plugin, Crate Digger wraps 800 crusty, dusty (but, crucially, original and royalty-free) hip-hop sounds, organised into 50 preset banks, in a simple MPC-inspired interface.

"The instrumentation is classic 90s hip- hop: keyboards, funky brass, guitar, vocal cuts, strings - you name it"

Each bank is mapped to the 16 pads, the first 12 holding melodic clips, stabs, short loops, etc; the last four firing off FX.

The instrumentation is classic 90s hip- hop: keyboards, funky brass, guitar, vocal cuts, strings - you name it - and playback can be mono, poly or legato.

Volume and pan are adjustable globally and per-pad, while Pitch is used to apply varispeed-style timestretch/pitchshift (80-100bpm) to the whole instrument. There's also a suitably subtle one-knob (depth) reverb for instant ambience.

Crate Digger's GUI is functional rather than innovative, but the concept works well enough and the samples are absolutely gorgeous.

Approaching it from a 'beat making' perspective, rather than as a weighty compositional tool, is obviously key, but if old-skool hip-hop is in any way your flava, this is essential.

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Tech Specs

DescriptionA beat-making tool for hip-hop lovers
PlatformPC/Mac (VST/AU)