Touring Drummers - shared backline

Hello, I am considering purchasing Sensory Percussion. I asked our FOH about using Sensory Percussion for touring. He is concerned about how fast set-up is when we have a throw and go with a quick turnover on a shared backline (festival/support slot).

This year, alongside our current 18-month album cycle, we will visit North America, Europe, and Asia. We play mostly clubs, small theatres, and festivals. It’s not uncommon to have 7 to 15 minutes to set up, line-check, and go. Outside of larger festival shows with multiple moving backlines, our limited setup time is not adjustable.

Does Sensory Percussions hardware/set accommodate for this time constraint? What touring solutions accommodate for shared backline drums?


Hi Marek. Did you end up buying Sensory Percussion for the tour? I find it challenging to set it up fast when I am playing concerts. But I am getting better at it, and the flexibility and the way the system responds when everything is set up perfect is just beyond words.

Thanks for responding. I did buy a two piece set up. It’s been hard to tour with. Our Front of House (FOH) and I struggle with the set-up 75% of the time. On the last tour, we had to switch back to my SPD-SX set b/c we weren’t able to get the Sensory Percussion (SP) to work reliably. Usually some sort of signal latency/software issue between SP/Ableton Live and front house or problems getting certain sounds to work. But, the worst, the most frustrating and embarrassing moment was was when the system crashed on stage in front of a sold-out theatre. Mid-song, a high-speed loud clicking came out of nowhere drilled our FOH, our monitors, and audience. Our FOH muted the SP channels, I quickly rebooted my computer but when I turned on SP the loud clicking was still there. This problem was at the beginning of the set so we played two songs without electronics while a stagehand got my older SPD-SX setup and used it for the remainder of the tour. I was hoping to play the SP at a two-week music residency that I am currently in but I’ve not yet. In fact, I’ve not taken it out of the case.

To be honest, yes, the SP musical response, creativity has been inspiring but the touring application has fallen short of my needs. I am sure it’s a simple fix but again having to worry about specific gear when on tour is not a solution. We’ve got a 1/2 dozen summer festivals that I would like to use SP for. I will keep you in the loop. Thanks for checking in.

I’ve had no problems with freezes like that after buying a Macbook instead of the Dell XPS I had before. But I’ve had alot of misfires and mistriggers on the shows I’ve played. However I will give it a shot this summer again. I’ve really dived into the threshold, sensitivity and velocity settings inside SP, and that has helped so much on the misfires so far.

It would be cool to share ideas and experiences with live gigging and soundchecks here?

Also: i asked Tlacael a couple of questions (how the threshold works and if you can get by without training all the pads) and here is a small snippet of response, that might or might not be helpful. It was to me at least… :slight_smile:

" 1. The threshold setting (red dotted line in the threshold panel) is always active. So, you can use this to threshold out quieter hits or cross-talk on the whole drum. You can try bringing the threshold up on the kick drum to avoid after-hits, but you can also try putting the “sensitivity” setting all the way to the left.
2. you can certainly only train the zones you’re gonna use in performance. However, if you, for instance, only train center, edge, rim tip, rim shoulder, and then play a rimshot, the software will have to decide which zone it is closest to, rather than you being able to decide. Training the rimshot and then using the “assign to” feature lets you decide which zone rimshot triggers, even if you don’t want to have a discrete rimshot sound. I often don’t train all the zones, especially on my toms."

have a great day

Hi @marektyler,

Sorry to hear that you had such a rough time on tour with Sensory. If you run into issues, please reach out to us either on our chat or through We are very quick to respond, especially to time-sensitive issues like this.

Since each setup is different – different interfaces with different computers running different versions of the OS – it may take some tweaking to get things running smoothly for a complicated live setup. We’re more than happy to help in that process.

As for the crash that you experienced, please let us know of any instances like this with as much detail as possible. Fixing critical issues like this is a top priority for us. If you can provide us any more details about what happened and how it happened (i.e. which version of SP, details on your setup) and send it to if would be greatly appreciated.

SP v1.6.3 is quite stable, but there are always more situations that uncover issues to us that we don’t know about. So, we greatly appreciate feedback if you run into any snags.

Touring with shared backline does add some complications to the mix as you’ll be setting up and training on drums that are unfamiliar. So, it may require a bit of extra time as well as comfort with the software and setup process. But many drummers are doing this with SP and have been doing so for years now, both on acoustic drums, mesh heads and in combination.


Hello Tlacael, Thanks for getting back to me. We’ve two more summer festival shows left before a month break and then back out with fall festivals.

First off, I want to use the SP live. Is there someone (working drummer?) that I can talk to that has successfully toured with the SP system? The challenge that I am having is that we don’t always get a soundcheck. Outside of the headline slots, we usually have a throw-and-go (7 to 15 minutes to set up, line check, and get up and running). Seven to fifteen minutes is not enough time to set up everything, train drums, and explain to the new sound-person what’s going on. Is there someone that I can talk to for advice on how to expedite this?


I’ll be playing a jazz/art club in August and it will be the maiden voyage with SP in my live kit so I’ll keep you guys posted on the status. I’ll be posting a video with my current setup at my home studio on YT soon, which will be my gigging setup as well.

It is a pretty intimate room - 40-55 +/- ppl I would assume. Club has: Bose L1 Model II PA, Mackie 1202 Mixer with Phantom Power, 1 Microphone and Stand.

Craig Walkner
Yeti Rain
Far Corner
Silent Man Standing