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Thread: Recording drums

  1. #1
    Matias Fernandez

    Recording drums

    Hello, i am from argentina, and i am willing to record drums. The problem is that i dont know whitch kind of mic use. What is best, a mic that works between 50 - 15.000Hz or a mic that works between 100-15.000hz?, a uni-directional mic?, i dont know where to start. Thanks!!

  2. #2
    Administrator Dave's Avatar
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    Sep 2004
    Te Awamutu, New Zealand
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    The main thing to get right is the kick drum. You can't use any old mic for this - most mics don't have the necessary low-frequency response. A specialist kick drum mic is needed to get a nice bassy sound.

    For the other drums and cymbals you don't need to be quite so picky. I used a set of Shure SM57s for ages and they were fine (just don't hit them with your sticks ).

    A reasonably directional pickup pattern is best but it doesn't have to be uni-directional.

    My thoughts anyway.
    Dave Owen

  3. #3
    Hey, since this topic of putting mics on drum kits came up, I was wondering why in this situation at my high school for talent show, why we used a condensing hyper cartioid mic for the hi hat, another 2 condensing hyper cartoid mics for the over heads, and then shure 57's for floor, snare, and either 1 or 2 for the toms depending on if we had to use the mics elsewhere simultanously, ohh alomost forgot that we used kick mic on the kick, but I dont remeber which one exactly it was but that it was one of the kick mics that shure makes. I'm thinking that the hyper cartoid on the hi hat was to eliminate any possibility of phase cancellation with the hi hat being to close to the snare and having them both micked up and it'd amke sense for the 2 overhead hyper cartoid mics to be for the symbols so that phase cancellation doesn't take place. Also, I was wondering if you guys could give me some suggestions on good condensing hypercartoid mic that I could use to mic up my church's drum kit becuase our drummer only understands rock concert volume level or we're all in a small room volume level which doesnt cut it becuase right now he is not micked up and i tell him just to go ahead and play soft and i bring the house volume down and it sounds ummm... bad but no where near as good as I can make it sound. And by the way Matias, shure 57's are a good way to go without getting too complicated, just set and rock out.

  4. #4

    Re: Recording drums

    want an awesome kick mic?....take an Sm 57 and remove the transformer (unscrew the body, it is glued in there and can be put back if you need it back to it's original specs) and then place it inside the kick offaxis (45 degrees or so) from where the beater hits the head. i learned this from the guy who used to live mix for AC/DC and used this for years. you might want to pad the signal -20db though.
    good luck

  5. #5

    Re: Recording drums

    SM 57's are good for all the drums. Industry standard. They can handle the high SPL's. Try an AKG D112 on the kick just inside at 45 degrees, pointed not directly at the beater, but kinda towards the center of the drum. I use Audio Technica 4033's as overheads most of the time. My church uses a pair of Shure boundery mics mounted to the inside of a 6 by 8 foot plexiglass board left/right in front of the kit about 4ft up to capture the cymbals and toms, and we record to video that way.

    I'm not shure I understand andrewr's phasing issue surrounding the use of super-cardioids. What mics are they?


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