Alternate Mode Logo

Complete Solutions and Systems for the Electronic Drummer and Percussionist

December Holiday Sales Event -- Save 15-25% on over 60 items!!! Click Here

KAT Testimonials

    “The latency reduction with GigKAT is so significant that my playing improved—especially with kick drum. Previously, I’d been using drum software on my laptop with the buffer cranked down to 32K…which didn’t feel slow until I made the switch. It’s like I snuck in six months of practice somewhere. Thanks, guys!”

    Bill Evans (Steve Morse, Kerry Livgren, Bob Ezrin)
    I got my MalletKat last week and have put it through my own testing process.
    This thing is simply astounding. Practically brings tears of joy to eyes!
    Everything about this instrument is incredibly well thought out. I only regret not buying it years ago. You're a genius!


    John Paul Borden
    I've been learning how to use my MalletKat over the last few months and started thinking a little outside the box. Thanks for making such a diverse, programmable and responsive instrument. It changes everything.

    John Thomas (Meta Quest)
    Thanks so much for the fix it job on my DK10..I tested it and it's running swimmingly!!!But I want to especially point out how much I dig the new sticker you put on the back jack panel...The person who did it went above and beyond and it is totally noticed. Thanks again.

    Ivan Justofin
    Just wanted to let you know that the jamKAT/DITI combo is a great product.
    I love it! And I am just getting started!

    Heiko Lettmann
    The Trapkat never stops amazing me. What a powerful instrument! It works beautifully with the Roland Integra 7.

    Sami Ghantous
    I've loved my original drumkat ever since I bought it in 1990. It finally stopped working after an unbelievable 23 years of operation! In that same time, I've gone through multiple amps, mixers, recording decks, 7 generations of computers and countless versions of effects and recording software. My drumkat was the one consistent and reliable piece of my rig the whole time. I now keep it in a trophy cabinet; can't bear to recycle it or throw it away. :-)

    I now thoroughly enjoy the drumkat and malletkat grand I bought last year. I'm so excited to add another drumkat and to add the trapkat into my rig.

    Thank you and your company for absolutely outstanding, long-lived, durable and road-worthy products and thank you as well for your outstanding service!

    Matt Turner
    The kids love playing it and the conductors have definitely started to realise the potential of it - at first several of the conductors were a bit skeptical but I got a message from our Convenor the other day that it was fantastic.
    We had the MalletKAT at home the other weekend as my daughter (who came in to the shop with me) was asked to play the xylo part for Hagrid's theme (Harry Potter of course). I managed to force my two off it for about 5 minutes so that I could have a go. Great fun!

    Nick O’Brien, Willoughby Public School
    New South Wales AUSTRALIA

    We all love the Malletkat. This year it has ushered in a huge change to the way we think about tuned percussion. We have used it at Robert Blackwood Hall, Monash Uni, Hamer Hall and even for a local Parish fete, out on the grass oval last week.
    We have been able to leave our Timps at school and our Chimes haven’t left the college grounds all year! My initial thoughts were for the sole purpose of pit work, but it has certainly been so much more than that. The most important addition to our percussion dept I can remember.

    Douglas Leutchford, Dir. of Inst. Music, Mazenod Boys' College
    Victoria AUSTRALIA

    I discovered the Malletkat in 2010 after having played diatonic marimbas for 5 years. The Malletkat was just what I was after, to challenge me more and teach me a chromatic instrument. I love the versatility of the Malletkat, which I play in combination with a sound module, iPad apps and a loop station, to enable me to create my own pieces on the fly.
    I was very pleased to hear that Optimum Percussion started to represent Alternate Mode's Malletkat in Australia a couple of years after I purchased my Malletkat from the US, as dealing with someone in Australia was a lot easier for me. Optimum has been fantastic to deal with, especially when I needed some work done on the Malletkat in 2013.
    I have used the Malletkat in a couple of musical projects I was involved with, including a project where I split the keyboard and 2 of us played a different sound on 2 octaves each (I own a 4 octave Malletkat Grand), but at the moment I just use it for my own project, Katalytic. I love the fact that I can be my own band and can rehearse at any time that suits me, create new music and break new barriers! I would highly recommend this incredibly versatile instrument to anyone and would recommend Optimum Percussion as the people to deal with.

    Zaia Kendall from Katalytic
    Queensland AUSTRALIA

    Got the update, installed it and love it. WOW..tell Mario he hit another home run with the GIGKAT.

    Ron Schreffler
    Just letting the trapKAT team know about the below:

    I've been telling the band members for months that I'm going to get an electronic drum set and I could tell they weren't to excited about it. Well, after practice last night, they were in awe. They couldn't believe how good it sounded. Now they are talking about putting me in the mains for our future gigs. I'm in agreement with them, plus it's so easy to set-up compared to my acoustic drums and the reduction in weight is a plus too!

    Thank you for such a nice product!!!!!

    Tom Rager
    The DK10 can be programmed quickly - the pads and pedals are set after a few stick hits. We were floored, however, when we paired the DK10 with Mainstage! The FSR pads provide a fine and detailed response when using Drum Kit Designer's multi-sampled patches!. We were most impressed with the expression of the DK10/Mainstage pair, particularly when he played at the lowest and highest velocity levels!

    Thank you, after almost twenty years, for a great product and for great product support!

    Sam and Craig Ricci
    New Jersey

    I'll say it again, I am so impressed with the design, tolerance and tough reliability of your products after 13 years of using them. So appreciative that Dan Fisher introduced me to your company. Everything is so well thought out in the design engineering that I haven't gone down in performance once. I have 3 KATS, 2 of them the Turbo's.

    Tony Caliendo
    PinkVoyd >Floyd theatrical rock show

    I want to thank everyone at Alternate Mode for doing such a good job and being so nice to me. It's a pleasure dealing with people so dedicated to the success of their customers.

    Dick Lincoln (Galaxy Nexus)
    Hi Mario!

    Hope all is well with you and that NAMM was great.

    Last night I played my first ever gig on a malletKAT. I have the Express here on the East coast so that is what I used, and the gig was a full set of Zappa music with the CT band "Z3" - anyway - man it worked great! I tune the controllers 1 octave apart and use sustain 2 as an octave pedal, really fantastic once you get used to it, it is about like playing a sax in that way I think but when I think of playing 2 hours of Zappa music on 2 octaves? It just blows my mind -soloing, everything came out great.

    THANK YOU for the KILLER instrument Mario!


    Best wishes and until soon

    Ed Mann
    Hello Mario,

    I am a musician who just loves the Malletkat! I would hereby like to thank you so much for opening a world for me that I otherwise never would have accessed! I have come from a background of diatonic marimba playing, and when I wanted to expand my musical ability I purchased a Malletkat. Playing the Malletkat has helped me heal after prolonged illness and has given me a wonderful and joyful outlet for my creativity! The Malletkat is my primary instrument and I use a loop station to build my music.
    Thank you so much for providing me with an instrument that gives me so much joy, and for hopefully enabling me to give joy to others through my music!

    Warm regards,

    The inHead package arrived safe and sound a few weeks ago.That is two weeks sooner than expected. The inHead is a marvelous trigger! I've incorporated it in my hybrid kit and it works like a dream. When I'm called on to play brushes I just turn off the inHead right at the snare put a small frame drum on the snare and use the brushes acoustically. Cross sticking on quiet ballads is just as easy to play by just turning off the inHead at the snare. Having the output control mounted on the snare is just so brilliant! We've solved triggering the wood rim by taping a sensor/trigger to the edge where my sticks can't hit it.
    Thank you for making my wish for an easy to operate hybrid a reality.

    Alan Burns
    Love my new Trapkat! Installing power dots as we speak. Ekick is for my home Trapkat other one is for a Trapkat 5KS at resident venues, Ekick is so cheap and such a high quality unit! Telling all my TD 20 mates don't lug that big ol' plastic kick pad with huge spurs about, get a life and get an E-Kick! Those who say it dosent look real I tell them wake up silly, playing an oversized hunk of plastic doesn't look real either! My Edrum monitors are 2 x jbl srx600 xlf 18" subs 2x srx 12" and top that 4000 watts of thump! Its all about the playability and the sound for m.
    Cheers mates thanks again.

    Your Aussie grooveKat Mick Huxley
    Mario-- I hope that all is going well.
    I've got the hang of assembling user kits--the MalletKat is a magic pallet of infinite musical shades where one can paint on an acoustic canvas in any style.
    Best regards,

    Joel Appelbaum
    Hey Mario!

    I just wanted to drop you a line to say thanks so much for all the help that you and all the others at Alternate Mode gave us for the Howard Jones tour. It was hugely appreciated.
    In addition to such a truly great product, it was so helpful to have the sort of backup service which you provided.

    The TrapKat performed absolutely brilliantly, and is head and shoulders above the other MIDI triggering alternatives available... I speak from experience, as we have used literally every option out there.

    I'm currently out on the Kim Wilde/Status Quo tour, and happily using my DrumKat, which is a solid as ever!

    If there's ever anything I can do for you or Alternate Mode, please don't hesitate to ask... I'm more than willing to tell anyone who will listen how good your products are!

    Thanks again

    Jon Atkinson
    Yesterday I had my first opp to work with the new MK all day long. I love it! The new surface is very consistent, best yet for me in terms of precise response that I can easily learn to play like a musical instrument. I love the low velocity nuance - I scale my min velocity back to 008 and it is fine.

    I was recording and editing all day long, it is a complete pleasure and it feels very solid and stable. Also no more random generated stuck MIDI notes.

    I am so happy to have a 3 octave MK again - it is a critical component of my daily mallet playing routine, the barometer by which measure proficiency and help direct my focus as I continue developing as a player, and my primary tool as a composer.

    Congratulations on the evolution of the design, thank you for your commitment and great customer service!

    Ed Mann
    Thanks again!!I continue to be impressed with the ease of program-ability and playability of the trapkat. The memory dumps from my Kat were corrupt, which further reinforces the theory that the weak battery compromised the memory. However I now have a newly rebuilt Trap Kat that I reinitialized, because the corrupt backup that I loaded about locked the unit up, and I fully appreciated the "note" interphase which enabled me to quickly and efficiently dial in the note settings to match my TD-8 modules settings that I had tweaked to match the Trap Kat several years before. Thanks so much for your professionalism and help.

    John Nitterauer
    Hi, I just wanted to thank you and your staff for such a fast turnaround on the repair of my trapkat unit. After reading the invoice I noticed that you had taken a few extra steps to revive the unit a bit..(decals,battery and a jack) for no charge and wanted to say how much that was exceptional in the customer service end, today it seems everyone would want to rack you for such care and Alt Mode came thru for me and surprised me. The unit has given me alot of play time and always draws the attention at every gig I play from other bands and alot of "what are you doing back there?..." really shines through when I use my glow in the dark sticks! Again I wanted to say thank-you and keep up the great work and don't stop making and inventing new stuff it's what got you there....

    Robert Pracht
    Thanks for making the best, most road worthy unit on the planet. I've had 2 since 1990, have never had one single issue and have been triggering ableton from my kit for Enrique Iglesias and Nena. This in my opinion is only made possible by the use of my KAT.

    Van Romaine. Producer, Drummer and MD for Enrique Iglesias, Nena
    I've had my drumkat for a few years, picked it up used off of ebay. Even though the unit is close to 15 years old, it's still the sturdiest, most reliable and cooperative midi controller I have.

    I use my drumKat primarily for tracking software instruments in Logic. I just recently signed on to do the score for a documentary on Poverty in Bangladesh, which should be airing on PBS next fall. I've been testing out some new percussion libraries for the project, and it's amazing how even the worst samples sound completely lifelike when tracked with the KAT. There just isn't an equivalent controller that's able to capture percussion velocity hits as accurately. I don't know what I'd do without it.

    Thanks again!

    Thanks for the expedient reply. I downloaded MIDI-ox and then loaded the data from the disc to my computer and into my drumKat. It worked!

    Thank you for your help. You guys are great and completely unique in the timeliness and accuracy of your advice. I own a pretty massive system including both analog and the latest digital recording technology and its usually hell trying to get aid when machines won't talk to each other or one decides to simply not work. What a relief to have you there.


    Michael Sena
    I would like to publicly say that Alternate Mode is the best Company I have ever had the pleasure of dealing with. I bought a 13 year old Drumkat off of craigslist about a month ago, only to find that it was not triggering properly and had a burnt out battery. The folks a Alternate replaced the FSRs, the pads, upgraded the chip to 4.5 and replaced the batteries. And for a lot less than quoted. The best part was that is took minimal time and was back to me here in Hawaii in less than a week after shipping it out!!! AMAZING!

    Thank you all so much for being the first Company I have ever dealt with to come through on your promise and please me beyond compare!

    Thanks again and Aloha!


    I've taken my MalletKAT on three gigs now, and the results have been great. Everybody loves the various voices (our NYC band does a hell of a version of St. Thomas with the African Marimba and a real calypso rhythm) and the richness and clarity of the sound. I've made all the adjustments I wanted to the User Kit vibes voices and they sound just great, including returning to your original pitch range for the vibes voices, Mario, which is an octave lower than the "real thing". You can get a great, almost organ-like sound out of the lower registers that way. As Mario told me I would, I've become a MalletKAT, not a vibes, player now.

    Dick Lincoln
    Thank you for the excellent service on an rushed special case repair. I'll be leaving for tour today and your company has been stellar in all facets of servicing my DK10, from phone conversations to the units return to me before I few out for my tour.

    Thank you again,

    Lester Goodwine
    Hello! For the last four months I have been using the MalletKAT Express on the national UK tour of 'South Pacific'. The MalletKAT is one of the most musically versatile digital percussion instruments I have ever played, offering remarkable levels of sensitivity and innovation that accommodates practically any performance situation.

    Thank you for developing such an innovative percussion instrument.

    Adam Davies
    United Kingdom

    I can attest to the durability, reliability, and roadworthiness of the MalletKat and support of Kat products in general. In the last 18 months, my MalletKat has preformed over a 150 concerts, countless rehearsals, and survived being shipped all over the world. I've used it on four continents, in over 20 different countries, in various climates and altitudes. I've used it for concerts before the Queen of England, Concert for Dianna, and it's a part of my regular touring percussion rig. The DrumKat is super solid as well. I bought mine in 1990 as my first MIDI device. Thanks to a good design and Alternate Mode's policy against obsolescence, I still use it. They've periodically updated it over the years at modest prices, versus having to shell out a bunch of bread for a new model. I wish other electronic companies would have the same approach! Thank you AM for your tireless work.

    Matt O'Conner
    By the way, besides the Kat being such a great instrument you have the VERY BEST customer support in the industry. Thanks again.

    Thanks for a great product. By the way, I use the drumkat with Larry Seyers PowerKits and lynxone soundcard and it's really a remarkable combo. The drumkat has great playability and accuracy in triggering the samples.

    John G.
    Dear Alternate Mode,

    BIG thank you for my T-shirt that arrived today. I will be wearing it with pride and will be telling everyone that asks me what an amazing thing my Drumkat is., I am using it with FXpansions great BFD software and its like having all the drumkits I ever wished to play at my fingertips. I actually own a Tama Starclassic acoustic kit as well, and the samples are so good you really can't tell them apart... its fantastic...Before I made my purchase I checked out yamaha's and rolands electronic offerings and I wasn't nearly as impressed as I am with my current set up, I was turned onto my Drumkat via the forums on propellerhead and I am so glad.

    thank you once again.

    Derek Wright
    My MalletKat Express arrived today. I was so excited that after I set it up I could not resist just playing for a few hours before starting to look into the many other functions. I found it to be excellently packed, very well made and like my Drumkat it is a truly great electronic instrument. I look forward to working with this instrument for many years.

    Thank you to you and all of the people at Alternate Mode for giving percussionists these powerful tools for making better music.

    Jarrod Bayliss
    Sydney, Australia

    The MalletKAT's versatility, transportability, silent practice capabilities, and recording potential are exactly what I have dreamt of but never thought practical...

    Nate Anderson
    I have to tell you all how elated I am with my MalletKat. It is one of the most well-engineered and esthetically pleasing instruments I've ever seen. Thank you for your creating such a beautiful blend of function and form. You've one more loyal fan!

    John Heavner
    Fayetteville, AR

    My band & I decided (after my mother-in-law said my new old TrapKat & D4 sounded like real drums) to try it out live this weekend to decide if it's worth upgrading and using live. We played 3 gigs and it was phenomenal!!

    Many people didn't realize I wasn't using real drums. Others stared and asked questions...walking right up to me during songs and asking about it...I answered them while playing.... without yelling.

    The Wow factor for our band just went up a notch. We are already using Bose L1 Gear which is a wow-factor on it's own; now we look totally geeky and love it! I videotaped a gig today and the sound is 100% better than it was when we used real drums. Clean and clear, dynamic, punchy...I could go on raving! I had no idea electronics could work so well for me, I've run the gamut...and with an old D4 no less!

    Also, I was just reading an old Modern Drummer review of the drumkat from years ago and saw you in it. I had no clue you were a founder. Thanks so much for taking the time to reply to me personally, I thought great personal customer service was only available at companies like Bose. I'm glad I found you guys, the Kat is revolutionizing music for our band, once again.

    Thank you So much for developing this amazing instrument.

    I've owned a Kat since the 80's and I feel it's the best thing on the market for the Drummer to have a full array of colors to play with. Keep up the good work!

    I play live on my DrumKAT anywhere from 1 to 5 times per week. The portability factor is just awesome! On my first live gig with this controller, I programmed it at home, packed it in a plastic tote box along with my pedals, stand, sound module, and cables; loaded it on a two wheel dolly, walked 20 mins. to work, and was set up, sound-checked, and playing at my gig 15 mins. later. Wow--thing of beauty! :oD

    The sensitivity and feel are amazing too! Most of my gigs are verrrrry low volume (some must be under 70dB, and others under 80 dB), so I turn up the volume on my sound module, but play very softly on my KAT. That gives me good sound but eliminates a lot of the stick-on-pad impact-noise. Great tone under 70dB--what a concept!

    Anyway, I just wanted to say thanks so much for helping me out. I really appreciate it. And--I'm totally pumped about my 'new' DrumKAT! :oD

    Thanks again, and God bless!

    Kirk Weber
    Ontario, Canada

    The "KAT TURBO" has been used by me for over 4 reliable years, withstanding road life used in conjunction with a kurtrzweil 2600 rack mount brain. The power and control features of the KAT are amazing compared to any product on the market allowing me to play complex guitar & key parts without sacrificing my drumming and vocals. The comfort level I have at shows makes this product untouchable!!

    Tony Callendo/"PinkVoyd"
    I just wanted to tell you that the MalletKat I ordered got here a week ago and I´m absolutely thrilled. It´s a one of a kind MIDI Controller and real easy to handle, too, last not least due to the help of the video instruction CD-ROM you guys sent with it. I already noticed that 3 octaves put limits on a lot of the stuff that I´m doing, so I may well order an expander unit later on next year. thanks a lot again!

    Lars Weber

    Thanks again for your help. I'm still in the process of creating my kits, but it appears that my struggles will pay off in a big way. I really enjoy the "feel" of the TrapKat and am glad that I have joined the Alternate Mode community of happy players.

    Peter Cohen
    Anchorage, Alaska

    Thanks for the speedy service! We are really excited to get our "Electronic Percussion Ensemble" off the ground here at BYU-Idaho.

    David Taylor

    I received my new trapKAT rubber and sensors today. I don't know of any other electronic device that can give over 10 years of faithful service and with a few replacement parts be back to good as new. Thank you for continuing to produce quality instruments.

    Ken Hamilton

    I received the board this afternoon. Guess what-It works! Thanks for the quick turnaround and the fair repair charge.

    Howard Goldwasser
    Webster, NY