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Do-It-All Drumming Setup
Old 24th December 2006
  #1
Gear Head
 
🎧 10 years
Do-It-All Drumming Setup

im primarily a drummer, and i've dabbled a lot with recording. but now i'm taking things seriously, and i'm looking to get a good start. i'm going to be pursuing a certification in recording, and while i'm learning, i want to have equipment to learn on. hence, i'm building the home studio.

i figured, since the drumset has a broad range of frequencies, from bass to treble, the equipment needed to mic a drumset (including mics, preamps, etc.) can be reused to mic almost everything else (ie. vocals, guitars, pianos, machine guns). so i'm working from this assumption (please correct me if i'm wrong). oh yeah, i'm going apple logic, not pro tools. the reason why isn't too important for now.

this is what i already have: the mac, the drumset, and some SM58s.
this is what i need: everything else to record the drumset at professional quality, with around 5k to spend.

what i'm looking for is advice on whether the equipment needed for drums really covers a lot of the bases for recording other things. so i'm looking for versatile, multi-purpose equipment that has really good value and is professional quality.

my shopping list begins with this:

Apple Logic
Apogee Ensemble (audio interface) (used)
Presonus FaderPort (controller for Apple Logic) (used)
Sony MDR-7506 (used)
3x SM58 (with isolation foam to imitate sm57 for the toms)


Notice how I have no preamp choices, and very few mic choices. I'd really like input on this. Also, I don't have monitors. I've also learned from this forum that it's best to drop big bux on the stuff that I'll never grow out of (ie. great mics/preamps), and it's better to have one pristine, stereo recording path than 8 mediocre ones. Of course, that might be hard since drums require a bunch of channels right off the bat. Any ideas? Alright, hit me (and thanks in advance)!
Old 24th December 2006
  #2
Gear Guru
 
RoundBadge's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
cool affordable pre options.no eq's:

API 3124
Daking IV
Wunder PA four
Seventh Circle,etc,etc
...................

API type lunchbox 4/6/11 space and a load of cool modules[comps/pre's/eqs] avialable now from many 3rd party folks.
enough options to make your head spin clean off:

Shadow hills
A Designs
buzz audio
Avedis Audio
eisen
API
Daking
Purple audio,etc,etc,etc

good luck and do searches here..lot's of info
Old 26th December 2006 | Show parent
  #3
Gear Head
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by RoundBadge ➑️
API type lunchbox 4/6/11 space and a load of cool modules[comps/pre's/eqs] avialable now from many 3rd party folks.
what's does "API type lunchbox 4/6/11 space" mean? i don't have the lingo down yet...

also, any suggestions on monitors? is it worthwhile getting great monitors that last, or getting so-so ones and expecting to upgrade later? there's this whole balance of getting the right items to last and the right items to hold back on that i'm trying to figure out. what are the essentials that i want to drop the most money on?
Old 26th December 2006 | Show parent
  #4
Gear Guru
 
RoundBadge's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nehe555 ➑️
what's does "API type lunchbox 4/6/11 space" mean? i don't have the lingo down yet...

also, any suggestions on monitors? is it worthwhile getting great monitors that last, or getting so-so ones and expecting to upgrade later? there's this whole balance of getting the right items to last and the right items to hold back on that i'm trying to figure out. what are the essentials that i want to drop the most money on?

Sorry my bad..The API box comes in 4, 6 and 11 space configurations.

Well..monitor wise..let me ask,what are you using now?
Old 26th December 2006 | Show parent
  #5
Lives for gear
 
lpkyer's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Hi, I'm a drummer too.
Here is a suggestion of gear to buy.

samplitude 9 classic version / 500$
echo audiofire 12 / 700$
frontier alphatrack / 200$
vic firth extreme isolation hp / 50$
beta 52 + sub kick / 500$
(5) audix i5 / 500$ (much better than the 57...)
(2) CAD Trion 700 ribbons mics for overheads
tascam vl-x5 monitors / 300$
API 3124+ / 2500
Sytek MPX4ii / 1000
Old 26th December 2006 | Show parent
  #6
Gear Maniac
 
microstudio's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Roland TD20
Old 26th December 2006 | Show parent
  #7
Gear Head
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by microstudio ➑️
Roland TD20
i want to learn how to record, and would electronic drums detract from my learning experience? i know a lotta drum recordings nowadays involve drum samples, but isn't the acoustic kit still an important element to every drum recording?

Quote:
Originally Posted by RoundBadge ➑️
Well..monitor wise..let me ask,what are you using now?
i don't have any monitors at all (unless my headphones count, then i have sony mdr-7506s). i've been reading from http://www.ethanwiner.com/acoustics.html
and i'm learning a whole lot about treating the acoustics in the control room as well as the recording room. seems like i'll need to treat the room first before even considering monitors. however, when the time comes, should i get top-of-the-line monitors that i'll never need to replace again, or should i get some cheaper ones with the expectation for upgrading later on? i feel like i should follow the former option and splurge on monitors (correct me if i'm wrong, but please correct me nicely), but there are so many options out there it makes my head spin. are there any industry standards i should follow (or is there no such thing as an "industry standard")?
Old 26th December 2006 | Show parent
  #8
Gear Maniac
 
Third Story's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
maybe you could look at cubase...good program...maybe some nice plug-ins (UAD)

mics i would look at...
sennheiser md421(toms)
akg d112( kick)
sm57 (get 3 or 4 of em)
akg c414's (a pair would make some nice oh's)

pres'
another vote for the 3124!! Amazing on drums(also killer on elec guitars) and its 4 channels!
maybe an a designs pacifica

good luck
Old 26th December 2006 | Show parent
  #9
Gear Head
 
🎧 10 years
i read in another thread that discussed items that people have bought and not been impressed with, and someone stated that all AKG mics were never that impressive. HOWEVER, i've also read a lot of good things about the d112. but in terms of the OHs, are there some alternatives to the AKGs you listed? when i think of OHs, i think of them as having tons of potential for other recordings, especially vocals. i'm not sure if that's true, but if it is, which mics would work great as OHs and vocals?
Old 26th December 2006 | Show parent
  #10
Gear Maniac
 
Third Story's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
well maybe get yourself a pair of audio technica 4050's for oh's and they will double up as vocal mics as well and pretty good ones! or you could get one 4050 and a pair of audio technica 4041's which will double as oh's and acoustic guitar mics...you could pair the 4050 with one 4041 and probly get some great acoustic sounds...also the rode nt5's are great oh's and acoustic mics!


p.s i also love my d112...alot! but thats just me..i have used the d112, beta 52, and audio d6 and prefer the d112
Old 26th December 2006 | Show parent
  #11
Gear Guru
 
RoundBadge's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nehe555 ➑️
i read in another thread that discussed items that people have bought and not been impressed with, and someone stated that all AKG mics were never that impressive. HOWEVER, i've also read a lot of good things about the d112. but in terms of the OHs, are there some alternatives to the AKGs you listed? when i think of OHs, i think of them as having tons of potential for other recordings, especially vocals. i'm not sure if that's true, but if it is, which mics would work great as OHs and vocals?
Don't believe the hype..
Most of those guys who dis' AKG[and got suckered into buying a Solitube at guitar Centerheh ] don't even know of/have heard a C-12 ..
one one the greatest mics ever made..
And I've made plenty a cool recording with D12's, D20's,D112,414's,etc
so take all this with a huge grain of salt.
AKG has made a few cool mic's.

Speaker wise..whats your budget?
Old 27th December 2006 | Show parent
  #12
Lives for gear
 
meteor's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Gotta have decent mics... here's a list of some great options that you can afford.

-A great sounding less expensive tom mic - EV 468 - also cool on electrics.
-Great sounding Kick mic - Sennheiser E901 on the inside - D112 or similar on outside/hole.
-I5/57 on snare top, Audix D-2 on snare bottom (trust me on that one)
-The pair of AT4050s is a great idea for OH as they will also work well for vox. There are other options for OH but you would want to look for multiple purposes.
-SM81 or Okatava MC-012(or similar) for hats. Also work for acoustic gtr, etc...
-ADK Hamburg for room mic - also a good/great alternative for Vox as they sound different than the 4050.

Great pres are important, but decent mics are just way more important. The mackie 800r is a good place to start for drums if you are just getting into it - and the conversion is built in. API is just amazing for drums (I'm leaving in about 10 minutes for drum/tracking session on an ancient API desk - so you know where I'm at), but decent mics and monitors matter more. Get into pres (API, NEVE, Daking, Chandler, etc... to name just a few of the innumerable options) when you learn how to make great tracks with standard/ordinary pres and decent mics.


have fun - tracking great drums is a big challenge in the best of circumstances, but it is so rewarding when it really works. Now I'm off to API land for just that reason... cheers,
Old 27th December 2006 | Show parent
  #13
Gear Maniac
 
microstudio's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nehe555 ➑️
i want to learn how to record, and would electronic drums detract from my learning experience? i know a lotta drum recordings nowadays involve drum samples, but isn't the acoustic kit still an important element to every drum recording?
I am sorry I thought you wanted an easy way to get great sounding drums. Getting a good drum sound is one of the hardest things to do.

I think you should find a good book or Video on recording methods and start there. There is a million things to know about. There are tons of good books & Videos out there. It's important to learn the fundamentals and then from there you at least have a good foundation to learn from.

Try these.
Old 27th December 2006 | Show parent
  #14
Lives for gear
 
Goliath|Audio's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
While there are some killer mics for recording a kick drum, you may want to concider the sm7 for kick. Also works great on bass cabs and some voices. I also put in another vote for the c414 for OH. Great for voice and almost anything else in front of it.

Hope that is some good insight for you.
Old 27th December 2006
  #15
One with big hooves
 
Jay Kahrs's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nehe555 ➑️
im primarily a drummer, and i've dabbled a lot with recording. but now i'm taking things seriously, and i'm looking to get a good start. i'm going to be pursuing a certification in recording, and while i'm learning, i want to have equipment to learn on. hence, i'm building the home studio.

i figured, since the drumset has a broad range of frequencies, from bass to treble, the equipment needed to mic a drumset (including mics, preamps, etc.) can be reused to mic almost everything else (ie. vocals, guitars, pianos, machine guns). so i'm working from this assumption (please correct me if i'm wrong). oh yeah, i'm going apple logic, not pro tools. the reason why isn't too important for now.

this is what i already have: the mac, the drumset, and some SM58s.
this is what i need: everything else to record the drumset at professional quality, with around 5k to spend.

what i'm looking for is advice on whether the equipment needed for drums really covers a lot of the bases for recording other things. so i'm looking for versatile, multi-purpose equipment that has really good value and is professional quality.

Hey man, you've got the right kinda logic there, but if you've only got $5k to throw at it then you should probably throw away 'yer shopping list!

Mics are super important...THE most important thing because it all starts with whatever the microphone picks up, or doesn't pick up...that affects all the other **** that's further up the road ahead, overdubs...mixing...mastering...what it all sounds like on the iPod all starts with whatever Mr. Microphone is hearing and HOW he's hearing it.

After doing it for 10 years...if I had to do it all again..i'd invest as much as I can on "good" microphones that will last for a lifetime of use & beyond. My 421's are probably as old as I am and I've owned 'em for 10 years...Beyer & EV dynamic from the 70's are still pretty cheap & are as good or better then anything that's being mass-produced today if they were cared for.

They've also held their value waaaaaaaay better, both monetary and in their realitive value to the toolbox as it were, WAY better then anything "digital".

Think about it...the pair of TLM103's I bought new in 1999 or whaenever it was, for about $1400 is still worth about that. I still use 'em too!

All the PCI cards & audio production software I bouight around the same time....a gnarly new PIII 500 and a WHOPPING 10gig drive! BUWHAHAHAH! loaded with an Adat Edit card, a Lucid AES/SPDIF PCI card and a really super buggy version of Logic for Window's 98....cost WAY more then the TLM103's and today is worth $200 or less and it's all sitting on a shelf, replaced by a bigger, badder R2D2.

I digress.

But anyhoo...you only need about 5 mics to cover a drum set "well" if the drummer is any good at balancing their playing. You can place those mics however 'ya want but usually it's kick, or just outside the kick...snare (maybe again, off to the side a bit...depends on prop-wash from the hats...) one or two overheads, something over by the side of the floor tom and take the time to go through 'em and fine tune the position and polarity...bring 'em into focus as it were.

Think of the microphone as a camera lens...light & shading. What's the thing aimed it on and it what is it were trying to focus on?!

Skip the Apogee thing for now & get a Motu box...their PCI stuff is pretty solid and IMO sounds comparably as good as the Pro Foolz HD boxes to my ear. Invest the money into microphones and then microphone preamps...other bits like compressors & EQ's. All that of that stuff matters WAY more then converters.

Really, whatever's in the M-audio or whatever 'ya got is probably more then fine for anything you might be doing. Respect digital zero & leave some headroom and things will be well. Upgrade when you can really define a "problem" with the quality of the covenversion process, because in all reality...moving the microphone an inch in whatever direction makes a WAY bigger difference then swapping converters around.

I'd go with Garageband or Cubase too...spend less on software. The Adobe program is pretty solid, does a lot and doesn't cost that much.

Buy new headphones too man. Eewww.. Like ear-sweat and stuff!

Be kind to yourself.

Find someplace where you can listen to a bunch & try some differenent pairs on....listen to the same music on 'em all. I usually burn a CD or two or take a wallet of things with me and look for either the most pleasing, and the most revealing pictures of the music.

If you can do that in a place with a bunch of speakers on display, any real "hi-fi" store or real pro audio shop, not usually a Guitarget...but even Circuit City has a switcher & a decent display room so 'ya never know...

Actually, that goes for monitors too. Good transducers are super important, how can you base all your production desicions on something you can't really trust or that isn't all that hip?

Passive monitors are good if your on a budget. You can get good drivers and a cheaper amp...upgrade later when you have more money or hear a diffencey...need a backup or spare or whuddever.

Invest as much as you can into mics and monitors, then into micamps if you can swing it. You need cables & stands and stuff too...that'll eat up a few hundred bucks...

I'm pricing out a new patchbay for the shop right now...minimum $1700 for one 96-point bay. It's crazy.



Gotta do it though.



In a perfect world, you'd probably want to spend at least $1500-2000 on five/six or so really good mics. Get a pair of 421's, maybe an AT4050 or two but if you can stretch...the Blue Dragonflys are one of my ALL-TIME favorite overhead mics & they wouldn't kill your budget...like $1500-1600 a pair new?! I've hung those time & time again against all kinds of other really hi-fi mics like original C12/C24, U87's...most all of the various incarnations of 414's including the fabled silver EB's with CK12's...and the Fly's freakin' kill people every time!

I also love how I can aim 'em around so easily since hte whole capsule pivots. Need more/less of that cymbal? Being able to aim the mic without having to muck around with the stand or shockmount ROCKS!

Plus they sound good on a lotta other things too. They're bright, but I wouldn't call them crispy. Maybe open & revealing. I've used 'em a bit on electric guitars, strings (violin, viola), acoustic guitars & all sorts of percussion (NOT shakers!) with varying degress of success depending on the tonality of the source. You'd probably get a bit of mileage from a pair.

Beyond a killer stereo pair of "something" you'd be well equipped with a pair of 421's, or maybe an RE-20 and couple of Beta 57's, one or two Sennheiser 609 silvers 'cause they're pretty kind to guitar amps, toms, some horns, maybe a vocalist or three...

Whatever the matched pair ends up being, get at least one alternate of the other type...so if you get a small diaphragm pair of mics, get something large like a 414 B/ULS (about $500) or a used AT4050 or a Beyer...whuddever, to have as an alternate voice. I've cut lots of vocals with smooth sounding small diaphragm condensors like the old KM84's (of which I don't own a pair) or "weird" as in not-well known and somewhat random old AKG & Altec mics that I've encountered in various shops...

Assemble a good, solid selection of mics and you'll be able to record just about anything you might encounter in your journey's. And yes...even Smackme preamps will sound just fine for now if the musicians themselves do. Save the API and vintage "never"pres for later on when you vcan afford to spend $1200 or better on a channel...

Geez...'ya do that and you'll have no money for mics to record anything, no money for cable to hook anything up...no monitors to listen to anything that you couldn't record 'cause 'ya had no money for mics after you spent it on a wall of API gear...


Man.




Kidz today don't know nuttin 'bout makin' no rekkids!


Peace out.

Last edited by Jay Kahrs; 27th December 2006 at 02:26 AM.. Reason: Clarity
Old 27th December 2006 | Show parent
  #16
Gear Head
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jay Kahrs ➑️
Kidz today don't know nuttin 'bout makin' no rekkids!


Peace out.
it's true, that's why we look up to you folks to guide us along! we're the next generation after all, and we don't want the next generation to have crappy music, dont we?

by the way, you just gave me the best scolding i could ask for

Quote:
Originally Posted by RoundBadge ➑️
Speaker wise..whats your budget?
i'm not sure, because i don't know if i should splurge on top-of-the-line-monitors-that-i-will-keep-forever or mediocre ones that will get upgraded later. i could drop a pretty penny on monitors though, since i understand their importance as my only reference to the mix. after all, if my mics sound awesome but my monitors don't reveal that, then i'd never know!
Old 27th December 2006 | Show parent
  #17
Gear Head
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jay Kahrs ➑️
Skip the Apogee thing for now & get a Motu box...their PCI stuff is pretty solid and IMO sounds comparably as good as the Pro Foolz HD boxes to my ear. Invest the money into microphones and then microphone preamps...other bits like compressors & EQ's. All that of that stuff matters WAY more then converters.
i was actually looking at a motu preamp/audio interface unit some time ago, but i ditched the idea in favor of the apogee. i'm not sure we're thinking of the same unit, but im sure mine also had a preamp. if that's the case, what's the benefit of having a routing path that goes mic > preamp > motu preamp/AI > computer? it would seem like the preamp prior to the motu preamp is used mostly for coloration purposes. however, i do see the benefit in that as now i have two different preamps with which i can juggle coloration. but since i'm on a low budget, would it be better to just have one preamp? i dunno, there's a lot of judgment involved, but i'm loving the thinking process.
Old 27th December 2006 | Show parent
  #18
Gear Head
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by meteor ➑️
Great pres are important, but decent mics are just way more important. The mackie 800r is a good place to start for drums if you are just getting into it - and the conversion is built in.
so i've been looking at the mackie 800r and i'm curious as to what's the best way to get the digital studio from this preamp into the computer. i have some ideas, but some specific suggestions would be helpful.

also, how does this preamp compare to the MOTU 896HD digital audio interface? it seems like the MOTU packs bigger bang for the buck, with the firewire 400 connection built into it. they both record at 24/192, so i'm guessing that the biggest difference between the two is in coloration. i've read great reviews on the Onyx preamps on the 800r; however, i don't know much about the MOTU 896HD. does anyone have experience/comments on these two products?
Old 27th December 2006 | Show parent
  #19
Lives for gear
 
meteor's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nehe555 ➑️
so i've been looking at the mackie 800r and i'm curious as to what's the best way to get the digital studio from this preamp into the computer. i have some ideas, but some specific suggestions would be helpful.
Most decent audio interfaces have an ADAT port... that's all you need for 8 channels @ 48k.
Old 27th December 2006 | Show parent
  #20
Gear Head
 
🎧 15 years
DRUM PREAMPS

In my experience, mics are great, preamps are better. A Brent Averill 312 (original API card or the new BA clone) will make most of these mics rock on your drum kit. They are 600 bucks each and will fit in any 500 series rack. Just a thought....


Chris Lindsey
Old 27th December 2006 | Show parent
  #21
One with big hooves
 
Jay Kahrs's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Lindsey ➑️
In my experience, mics are great, preamps are better. A Brent Averill 312 (original API card or the new BA clone) will make most of these mics rock on your drum kit. They are 600 bucks each and will fit in any 500 series rack. Just a thought....


Chris Lindsey
Hmmm...well yes...preamps DO matter.

But if 'ya got $5k to spend on everything...does it REALLY really make sense to buy a half dozen 512's at $600 each plus a lunchbox at another $500-600 for a grand total of about $4100?!?

Uhhhhhhhhh....





Anywhoo...I bought the Motu 24I/O and a 2408mkIII, we also have a Radar around and various other bits. The PCI based Motu boxes (like a 24I/O or HD192) sound a bit "better" then the Firewire boxes like the 828 but even that's not too bad.

If you're just starting out, the micamps and converters aren't the things that are gonna be holding you back.

At that level....Motu, M-AUdio, Smackme...whuddever...it's all about the same sonic quality. Don't sweat it too much.
Old 31st December 2006 | Show parent
  #22
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 15 years
drums sound much better recorded onto tape. you can get an old 4 or 8 track reel to reel for about Β£2-Β£300, couple that with a few good mics, pre-amps and/or a desk, nicely tuned new heads, a decently live room and a good drummer, and transfer the whole lot to your computer. recording drums to a tape machine first (as opposed to recording straight into your DAW) will make more of a positive impact on your drum sound than any other piece of gear of equivalent value. Don't buy anything to 'warm up' your sound unless it involves a tape machine - tape responds to being overdriven a lot more usefully than any valve front end or vintage compressor on drums.I wouldn't buy 58s specifically to record drums with - they'd be my last resort if i didn't have any other mics, and they can sound OK on drums, but there are many better alternatives. If i was looking to experiment, I'd look into these as they all rock in their own way, none of them cost a bomb and it'll give you a lot of options. Actually, you could make a whole record with these. I've left out cheap condenser mics as i've yet to use one that i could honestly recommend - I don't even like the AKG 414s, which cost a bomb in low-end terms. I'm presuming you want stereo drums - if you don't, ignore the 2x's

2xCrown PZM(room, kick, overheads) - easy modification available on the internet
2xT-bone RB500(room, overheads, FOK)
2xEv635a(room, overheads, snare, rack tom)
shure beta 57(under snare)
Audio-Technica ATM25(floor tom, kick)
Old 31st December 2006 | Show parent
  #23
Gear Maniac
 
ryguydrum@netsc's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
I have a MOTU 896HD (I am a drummer as well) and it
is a pretty good deal considering you get 8 mic pre's
with 8 channels of A/D conversion, as well as 8 channels
of D/A. It came in handy at first when I was just starting
out with computer recording.

That being said, when you start to get better equipment
and you sharpen you engineering skills, you realize that
the 896HD mic pre's sound kinda small and cardboardish,
and the conversion is just ok (however, I do have stuff
playing on TV that I recorded with the 896HD and it holds
its own with other music I hear on TV, so it can get the job
done).

Here is what I would get for a basic set up . . .

1. 8 channel A/D-D/A MOTU, RME, Apogee
2. SM57's, AKG 414's, Senn. MD421's and check out Heil mics,
I think that they will become de-facto mic standards (and
they are affordable)
3. Sony 7506/Beyer Dynamic DT770's (and get new ones)
4. Monitors are so personal you just need to see what
works for you, but check out NHT, KRK, Dynaudio, Yamaha, etc.
5. Mic Pre's API, Chandler, Daking, blah blah blah (do a search, it
will make your head spin how many choices there are out there)
6. Software wise I dig Digital Performer and ProTools, but again
very personal and it sounds like you dig Logic.

Hope that helps.
Old 31st December 2006
  #24
Lives for gear
 
cajonezzz's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
I'd do a Midas Venice 160,pre's sound great and eq is very useable as a mic shaper. spend the rest on mics, and an 8 ch convertor. I wasn't impressed with the Ensemble btw.

D6 for kik
pair of Ksm32's for overs.
and 4 e22's for the snare and Toms ( amazing)

then look for something high zoot for a room mic that will also aid in your inevitable slide towards producing ( and cutting other than drums)

another high on the list mic for me would be a stereo Royer, or AEA as a diff color over, and great "natural" mic on organic stuff.

also can't go wrong with a Beta91/sm91 to throw in kik and as a boundry mic on the wall type thing.

I love the sm98 clip on's for snare under and spot micing.
Old 31st December 2006
  #25
Lives for gear
 
foldback's Avatar
 
5 Reviews written
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nehe555 ➑️
im primarily a drummer, and i've dabbled a lot with recording. but now i'm taking things seriously, and i'm looking to get a good start. i'm going to be pursuing a certification in recording, and while i'm learning, i want to have equipment to learn on. hence, i'm building the home studio.

i figured, since the drumset has a broad range of frequencies, from bass to treble, the equipment needed to mic a drumset (including mics, preamps, etc.) can be reused to mic almost everything else (ie. vocals, guitars, pianos, machine guns). so i'm working from this assumption (please correct me if i'm wrong). oh yeah, i'm going apple logic, not pro tools. the reason why isn't too important for now.

this is what i already have: the mac, the drumset, and some SM58s.
this is what i need: everything else to record the drumset at professional quality, with around 5k to spend.

what i'm looking for is advice on whether the equipment needed for drums really covers a lot of the bases for recording other things. so i'm looking for versatile, multi-purpose equipment that has really good value and is professional quality.

my shopping list begins with this:

Apple Logic
Apogee Ensemble (audio interface) (used)
Presonus FaderPort (controller for Apple Logic) (used)
Sony MDR-7506 (used)
3x SM58 (with isolation foam to imitate sm57 for the toms)


Notice how I have no preamp choices, and very few mic choices. I'd really like input on this. Also, I don't have monitors. I've also learned from this forum that it's best to drop big bux on the stuff that I'll never grow out of (ie. great mics/preamps), and it's better to have one pristine, stereo recording path than 8 mediocre ones. Of course, that might be hard since drums require a bunch of channels right off the bat. Any ideas? Alright, hit me (and thanks in advance)!
I'll probably get spammed to death for this but here goes. I tried to balance your budget and put together a package that would really help you record.

Instead of the Ensemble, get a Rosetta 800 with the firewire board in it. That will get you native on the Mac with a better quality and more versatile converter box. Ask Apogee which is better, Ensemble or Rosetta 800?

Get a Behringer MX-9000 24x8 recording console. It has all the mic pre's and the 8-buss design will work well with the Rosetta. You can buy these mixers brand new for $1000. I've used them quite a bit for doing low cost remote band recordings. I also have one in my main studio for the keyboard rig. These boards are low noise and have good flat response. The mic pre's have no color, are low noise and low distortion. The individual LED meters on every channel is a nice feature on this mixer. It is insane how well it works and how inexpensive it is. These mixers still sell for $600 to $800 on ebay used so you could get one, use if for two or three years, sell it, it cost you like $400 dollars , that's pretty darned cheap. As far as sound goes, you should listen for yourself. I also regularly use racked up API 512C and Grace m801 preamps. They sound better than the Behringer but on your budget, I'd say getting some fat mics to add to your current kit is important too.

You'd be using the high quality Rosetta AD-DA so your master digital files will be supreme quality.

The final thing I'd recommend are the MXL 2001 LDC mics. These are cardiod and have transformer coupled outputs. IMHO these mics are a fantastic bargain for drum applications. The only real drawback is their size, they are physically large like a U-87. I use them on snare, toms, sometimes hat and overheads. For small sound reinforcement of drums you can get a smooth sound on the whole kit with just one 2001 overhead. I got mine at GC for about $80 each. MXL dicontinued this mic for a while but it's back in the anniversary kit which comes with a second mic, a small diaphragm model, the whole kit for both mics is $99. I've never used the SDC so I can't comment on its sound.

We service two kinds of clients with our remote recording service. Rock bands that have no money and everyone else who wants to spend a little more on the equipment rentals. Our packages start cheap and get a lot more expensive.

I regularly use that same Behringer mixer, Alesis HD-24XR, and the MXL mics. Sometimes I substitute a Yamaha MG32 32x4 console. We transfer the HD-24XR tracks by firewire into a Mac. The customers can mix at my place on Protools through a Neve 8816 or they can take their tracks home and do it all themselves. The point is, I've been regularly using these components to get at a whole new client base and the recordings the bands are doing sound really good.

Todays range of inexpensive gear sounds pretty amazing, in most cases, the recording quality of these systems greatly exceeds the recording ability of the talent.

Best of luck to you no matter what you choose.
Old 1st January 2007 | Show parent
  #26
Gear Addict
 
GravityRobert's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by foldback ➑️
Get a Behringer
.... Did I just read thΓ‘t? tutt

Haha, just kidding.
Old 8th January 2007 | Show parent
  #27
Lives for gear
 
firby's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Hi dude,

I was in your position when I came back from studying audio abroad. My setup is cheap. Tascam M2600 Mk II for the mixer which I like. a couple of SM57s. Beta 52 for kick. Beyer ribbons for overs.

Think about your recording space in concern to miking drums. When you go to school they will have a nice studio with high celings for recording drums and what not. You need stuff that will give you a sound in a less than stellar room.

good dynamic mics will help you out and save the day for now. Later you will still use something like a SM7 or an SM57 or a beta 52. I got some cheap large diaphram condensors and they have become obnoxious as I have gotten better at recording. Save your money and dont buy one for more than 40 bucks. They really pretty much all sound the same until you get up to a AT4037 type of range IMO. Try cheap ribbons yes but remember that they are figure 8 and your sucky room will bite you again.

I don't regret buying a mixer. I love this mixer. I have a selction of cheap mic pres to supplement it. It is a great learning experience to just bite the bullet and learn every dam function on a large format mixer. Analog stuff is about the signal flow so get to it !

Cheers and good luck, you have a long and interesting road ahead of you.
Old 8th January 2007 | Show parent
  #28
Moderator
 
toolskid's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by paulneedles ➑️
drums sound much better recorded onto tape. you can get an old 4 or 8 track reel to reel for about Β£2-Β£300,
uhmm...

be wary of advice like this...

I'll take tracking to a cheap DAW most anyday over tracking to a cheap - poorly maintained - unaligned (or unalignable) tape machine!!!
Old 9th January 2007 | Show parent
  #29
Lives for gear
 
Stevil's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
i'm basically a keyboard guy that wanted to capture jams; drums, bass, guitars ect live on a similar low budget. here's what i went with:

pre's: 2 Behringer ada8000 (16 ins)
soundcard: Creamware project (adat light pipe connect to the ada8000's)
monitors: Tannoy reveal
amp: QSC RMX2450

mics:

Kick -
front (beater) shure beta 52
back (hole) AT pro25

snare -
top sm57
bottom (hat side) mxl 990

toms - 3 old crap 58's AT

overheads - 2 mxl 604's

i'd post a clickable link to how it sounds but the f word police is censoring my artistic integrity. if yer interested 'copy shortcut' & replace the ****'s
http://brainwashaudio.com/transfer/t...*ing%20hot.mp3

i'm thinking about changing the overheads to Rode NT5 since the mxl's whine occasionally from cymbal frequency abuse. otherwise i'm pretty content with the tone.
Old 10th January 2007 | Show parent
  #30
Gear Maniac
 
pianoman's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
I basically echo the good advice quoted here.

I've recently done some upgrades and noticed huge differences (and particularly on drums) with AKG 414B-XLS on OH, AT4050 on snare and AKG D112 on kick. I'm thrilled, and the drummer I work with goes "wow!". In fact, although I've been considering a 5th mic, I'm not even sure I need it. That said, I'm doing mainly jazz; YMMV.

I can't agree more with the statement about the mics being important. That said, I noticed a huge difference in bringing out the mic sound with a good pre. I do feel it's quite important and shouldn't in any way be neglected. You've heard lots of buzz about the DAV preamps. The difference with and without is startling. And a good preamp really brings out the microphone differences. IMO, there is little point in having an AKG go straight into your computer interface; honestly, without the pres I was having trouble grasping why the AT4050 sounded better than my old MXL67s. With the pre, it was sooooo clear why. I absolutely agree with the advice to skip the name brand preamp which colors the sound until later on. There may well be audio plug-ins available for your computer that can perform a similar function. IMO, it's important to get the sound amplified as accurately as possible. You can do post-processing of the recordings after the fact, but you can't re-record a given take. I believe the DAV is affordable on your budget, especially if you limit yourself to 4 drum mics that need amplifying. If you can't see your way to the DAV, I would recommend the FMR RNP which is considerably less expensive.

One of the nice things about GS is that people are willing to share samples of sounds, especially if you PM and ask nicely. This is a real community. So if you are considering going with a particular configuration, and someone appears to use that already....

I absloutely agree with your decision to use Logic Pro. I assume you already own it and have come up on the learning curve. You could, of course, use Cubase, which is supplied for free with the Presonus Firepod, which I'd also recommend to interface to your computer. You will need 4 or 8 channels. For the price difference, I'd recommend 8, especially ecause if you want more than 4 mics after the fact, it's harder to get Logic/Apple to recognize two separate interfaces simultaneously.

Best of luck!


Quote:
Originally Posted by Third Story ➑️
maybe you could look at cubase...good program...maybe some nice plug-ins (UAD)

mics i would look at...
sennheiser md421(toms)
akg d112( kick)
sm57 (get 3 or 4 of em)
akg c414's (a pair would make some nice oh's)

pres'
another vote for the 3124!! Amazing on drums(also killer on elec guitars) and its 4 channels!
maybe an a designs pacifica

good luck
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jay Kahrs ➑️
After doing it for 10 years...if I had to do it all again..i'd invest as much as I can on "good" microphones that will last for a lifetime of use & beyond. My 421's are probably as old as I am and I've owned 'em for 10 years...Beyer & EV dynamic from the 70's are still pretty cheap & are as good or better then anything that's being mass-produced today if they were cared for.

....

But anyhoo...you only need about 5 mics to cover a drum set "well" if the drummer is any good at balancing their playing. You can place those mics however 'ya want but usually it's kick, or just outside the kick...snare (maybe again, off to the side a bit...depends on prop-wash from the hats...) one or two overheads, something over by the side of the floor tom and take the time to go through 'em and fine tune the position and polarity...bring 'em into focus as it were.

....

I'd go with Garageband or Cubase too...spend less on software. The Adobe program is pretty solid, does a lot and doesn't cost that much.

....

Whatever the matched pair ends up being, get at least one alternate of the other type...so if you get a small diaphragm pair of mics, get something large like a 414 B/ULS (about $500) or a used AT4050 or a Beyer...whuddever, to have as an alternate voice. I've cut lots of vocals with smooth sounding small diaphragm condensors like the old KM84's (of which I don't own a pair) or "weird" as in not-well known and somewhat random old AKG & Altec mics that I've encountered in various shops...
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