What is a drum machine?

A drum machine is an electronic musical instrument that can imitate drum kits and percussion instruments. Some can also produce artificial sound effects. Most drum machines allow users to create their own rhythms.

A drum machine is commonly used on recordings in electronic music genres such as house, dance and hip hop. It may also be used as a metronome, as a backing track during practice or to explore how different drum rhythms sound.

Using the drum machine

Click the squares to create your drum rhythm. Double click the squares to toggle between hi-hat and open hi-hat, snare drum and cross stick, and high tom-tom and low tom-tom. Click the instrument names to the left to mute the sound.

Select tempo, time signature and swing at the top. Click "Presets" to see the most common drum rhythms. You can easily vary the rhythms, for example, by using ride cymbal instead of hi-hat and cross stick instead of regular snare drum.

You can save your drum rhythm by copying the web address in your browser window. This also allows you to share your drum rhythm with others. For example, here is a funk rhythm and a crisp drum fill.