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Toms too resonant
Old 23rd January 2009 | Show parent
Lives for gear
Beyersound's Avatar
🎧 10 years
Originally Posted by superburtm ➡️
.also back the mics away...
I third this! Many people mic toms too close. If you put your ear close to a tom head that is hit you will hear much more overtone than if you back away a couple of inches. Now add proximity effect to that, and that's what the mic actually hears.Also the more overhead and/or room mic you use, the less ringing from the close mics you will hear. Forget tape and gels and crap, use a gate, Transient Designer, etc. Then you can keep all of the tone instead of muffling a bunch of it along with the ringing! I have spent years encouraging drummers to keep the tape and stuff off of their drums, and thank god most of them do it and are much happier.
Old 23rd January 2009 | Show parent
Jules's Avatar
Originally Posted by Tim Abraham ➡️
....the Transient Designer does wonders for difficult toms.
Originally Posted by DanDan ➡️
That MoonGel seems good, try it in or near the centre of the underside heads. That might deaden or shorten the fundamental.
My thoughts too
Old 23rd January 2009 | Show parent
Gear Maniac
🎧 10 years
Originally Posted by RockManDan ➡️
i think someone may have mentioned it earlier, but my favorite solution for getting rid of annoying ring without changing the sound of the drums is surgical eqing. all the other methods tend to have bad side effects. Use a heavy gate and you'll get weird cymbal artifacts that come and go(unless teh cymbals are really high up...a rare luxury). plus i kind of like the bleed into the tom mics and usually it helps glue everything together. but gating them and eqing them with a lot of mids to get them to punch through just makes it weird when theres a fill surrounded by crashes.

same thing with stripping everythign thats not a hit. can be done, but for some styles its too labor intensive and not necessarily practical if theres lots of dynamics.

like many have said, physical dampening can kill the pure natural resonance and attack of teh drum. the technique i always come back to is let the drum breathe like it wants to, 4 times out of 5 the ring will be masked by the rest of the mix anyway, but it its still not good, or its very musical and conflicting with the notes of the song, then solo the track, take a software eq with teh narrowest Q possible, and sweep around with like 15-18db of gain until you hear that ring go PIIINGGG right out of the speakers. This is a good start for where to cut, so turn that 18db gain into 18db cut, and most of the times that works wonders. Vary the amount of cut for adjustment of sustain depending on the mix. Also, play around with 1/2x and 2x multiples of that frequency to find which rings are more fundamental or harmonic. Sometimes cutting more harmonic rather than fundamental keeps more body and less ring. sometimes the opposite is true. depends on teh drum and the mix.

furthermore, you may be experiencing ring from other drums, such as sympathetic ring from the kick drum into the tom tracks (not a problem if the toms are seperately suspended, but again...a rare luxury), in which case you have to cut teh kick drums frequency out of the tom surgically. This is pretty non-invasive because its not the natural resonance of the tom that you're cutting. Also, depending on how you're micing the kick, it too could be picking up some odd tom rings, and cutting those out will probably not interfere with the kick's natural resonance.

basically IMO a lot of the typical solutions to tom ring tend to throw the baby out with the bathwater. you have to isolate exactly what you don't want, which is usually just a ring that spans a pretty narrow spectrum, so in most cases theres no need to go all ballistic with muffling and gating which to my ears and experience tend to get rid of things you want as well, like the body of the tone, or consistent(yet workable) amounts of cymbal bleed, or subtle dynamic rolls that would sound really bad with a gate.

IMO of course...no hard and fast rules, sometimes gating/muffling can work wonders, especially with cheap drums, in which case you do whatever you have to to get good results, rules be damned.


EDIT: forgot to add that upward compression/expansion/very light gating can also work like gangbusters when combined with the above technique. it can minimize the bleed without just chopping it off. transient designer plugs also work great for giving a big SOCK in the face without making it sound all manipulated.
I just tried this method, and it works amazingly well. You can even sweep thru the frequencies and it changes the initial attack tone. Just find the attack freq you like that sustains without clashing overtones, and there you are.
Old 23rd January 2009 | Show parent
Gear Nut
🎧 10 years
Tuning the reso higher than the batter will shorten the sustain ... works well ... it also creates the 'pressure' that gets the shell involved, moving, and humming .... (like a snare drum) ....

Sometimes finding one lug and working that can 'illogically' make a huge difference for the better .... as has been suggested ....

I tend to tune the reso first ... and then the batter ....

Just recently I have been getting away from blindly trying to get every lug to be in tune .... I find this hard to get perfect (cheap drums) and it doesn't neccessarily make me go 'oh wow, the toms are really cookin' when I do get it perfect ....

Instead ... I've been getting up real close to the heads and listening for the hum .... of each lug, their neighbours, the whole skin and trying to 'feel' what the reso is doing at the same time .... trying to 'hear out' where the drum with those particular skins wants to be .... sometimes the lugs will be out of tune ... a bit ... one of em may be way out .... but overall, the drum sounds better .... the sustain sounds right for the size/pitch ....

And I'm happier with my results when I start playing .... and recording ....

I find the tom sustain usually disappears in the song anyway .... and can glue parts of the song together if they feature well in the groove ...

I also think it takes ages to tune drums well .... if I tuned a set of toms everyday for a year, I might be almost good at it ....

It's kinda fun tuning drums ....

I'm a guitar player ....

Lotsa great advice in this thread .... one of the better ones ....

Have fun

Michael V
Old 23rd January 2009 | Show parent
Lives for gear
🎧 10 years
I second the guy who said 18 inch floor toms are difficult...I'd avoid them when I can.

Old 23rd January 2009 | Show parent
Lives for gear
Chris's Avatar
🎧 15 years
I want to bump this because I have these same problems and I'm learning a lot from this thread.

For the ones that say tune the drum, then completely loosen a lug, doesn't it rattle around and make noise?
Old 23rd January 2009 | Show parent
Lives for gear
🎧 10 years
Originally Posted by Chris ➡️
I want to bump this because I have these same problems and I'm learning a lot from this thread.

For the ones that say tune the drum, then completely loosen a lug, doesn't it rattle around and make noise?
not really...oif it does put some gaff tape on it
Old 25th January 2009 | Show parent
Lives for gear
adamcal's Avatar
🎧 15 years
I just want to repeat what's been said, once you start laying instrument tracks and the song builds up the length of the toms will be become less audible. If fact if you start with toms too short, it may sound good by itself by the time you get to the mix they just wont have any "bigness"

so long as they are in tune and not ringing stupidly , I say let em ring out.
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