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How to get a perfect snare sound?
Old 30th November 2009 | Show parent
  #31
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audiogeek's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lemontree ➡️
It's in everything from the room to the mic and the placement of the mic to the mic pre, compression, EQ.

Great snare sounds don't just happen, most are crafted on the spot for the song/style at hand.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wiseg ➡️
your not serious are you?
Wiseg, i'm curious about your question... are you implying that things like room, mic placement etc don't add up to a great snare sound, or are you saying that great snare sounds do 'just happen?' do you not think about 'the song/style at hand'?
Old 30th November 2009
  #32
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Igotsoul4u's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 15 years
The biggest eye opener for me was micing the bottom of the snare (usually a 414) and blending it with the top. I use the top mic for pure impact instead of tone which results in a small annoying sound. I then bring the bottom mic up so it surrounds impact of the top mic with nice snare tone. I think of it as a sound donut. The bottom mic is the donut and the top is the donut hole.

Unfortunately your actual snare drum can present a couple problems like how your snare is tuned or the conditions of the heads. I think its obviously important to have a good sounding snare thats appropriate for the style. Your room is also a huge player in the quest for perfect snare.
Old 1st December 2009 | Show parent
  #33
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Beyersound's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by jono_3 ➡️
I always thought john bonham had a pretty amazing snare sound. Apparently he didn't even use samples! :p
Shhhhh!!!!!!!! Don't tell anybody, it's a secret!
Old 1st December 2009 | Show parent
  #34
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Beyersound's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Igotsoul4u ➡️
The biggest eye opener for me was micing the bottom of the snare (usually a 414) and blending it with the top. I use the top mic for pure impact instead of tone which results in a small annoying sound. I then bring the bottom mic up so it surrounds impact of the top mic with nice snare tone. I think of it as a sound donut. The bottom mic is the donut and the top is the donut hole.

Unfortunately your actual snare drum can present a couple problems like how your snare is tuned or the conditions of the heads. I think its obviously important to have a good sounding snare thats appropriate for the style. Your room is also a huge player in the quest for perfect snare.
I hear you on that one, it can definitely work, just remember that the quite possibly most used snare sample for many years was from top mics only. It was the Clearmountain snare sound and sample, he uses only top mics, the vintage Black Beauty snare and it's tuning (he tuned it himself) are the heart of that sound. I used to use a lot of bottom micing both live and in the studio until I heard that snare, it caused me to experiment with different tuning and EQ methods. When I had a grasp of that, snares started sounding great from the top only, and with much less subtractive midrange EQ. Backing the mic away from the top head a few inches really helped it to sound better naturally. This technique will also reward you with less crappy kick leakage, and phase problems.
Old 1st December 2009 | Show parent
  #35
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ScumBum's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Beyersound ➡️
I hear you on that one, it can definitely work, just remember that the quite possibly most used snare sample for many years was from top mics only. It was the Clearmountain snare sound and sample, he uses only top mics, the vintage Black Beauty snare and it's tuning (he tuned it himself) are the heart of that sound. I used to use a lot of bottom micing both live and in the studio until I heard that snare, it caused me to experiment with different tuning and EQ methods. When I had a grasp of that, snares started sounding great from the top only, and with much less midrange EQ. Backing the mic away from the top head a few inches really helped it to sound better naturally. This technique will also reward you with less crappy kick leakage, and phase problems.
So using just a 57 on the Top of a good snare should get you there ? I rarely get the snare sound I'm after . I've always wanted a Black Beauty snare .
Old 1st December 2009 | Show parent
  #36
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Beyersound's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by ScumBum ➡️
So using just a 57 on the Top of a good snare should get you there ? I rarely get the snare sound I'm after . I've always wanted a Black Beauty snare .
A 57 can work, I like the 57 plus a top condenser (SM81,451, 4041, etc) method. The condenser adds that nice roundness and fidelity element that a 57 can lack. The condenser also captures the bottom better without having to be right against the drum. I don't have a Black Beauty snare, but get great results with a Ludwig Acrolite that way.
Old 1st December 2009 | Show parent
  #37
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Keith Moore's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by T. Morgan ➡️
The SPL Transient Designer is pure magic.
Are you using the plug in or hardware?
Old 1st December 2009 | Show parent
  #38
Lives for gear
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by ScumBum ➡️
So using just a 57 on the Top of a good snare should get you there ? I rarely get the snare sound I'm after . I've always wanted a Black Beauty snare .
I felt the same way until I learned to check phase.
Old 1st December 2009 | Show parent
  #39
Gear Maniac
 
metalfan8806's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by s.d.finley ➡️
+1 on starting with a great snare
really- that is the truth behind all the elements behind all of my favorite recordings...the instrument, the band, the performer is too excellent to mess up. Put a mic on it and hit the button and let it happen. thumbsup

so start off with the RIIIGHHHT snare for the job and you're already 75 percent there.
Old 1st December 2009 | Show parent
  #40
Gear Maniac
 
ChrisCummins's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by BLueROom ➡️
properly tuned snare, player, room, proper micing, pre, processing

in that order. ymmv
Why would you pick the snare itself over the player? Watching Buddy Rich pull out great tone out of a crap 60 year old kit with trash can cymbals made me really wonder if all of the time and money spent on custom shells and valve compressors couldn't have better been spent on drum lessons heh

Regards
Old 1st December 2009
  #41
Lives for gear
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Enderspeaker ➡️
Hey guys, I'm new here and I have a question about a particular drum sound I came across while checking out the addictive drums audio demos.

The sample is called Janus.

XLN Audio

I'm especially interested in learning how these are processed because they sound so perfect and punchy and resonant in a good way if you know what I mean.

Is it just a matter of how the drum is tuned or is it the processing that is making it sound so good?
I don't think there's much processing on that drum.

If I were to try to recreate that sample, I'd use a 14x5 or 14x5.5 non-wood drum. I'd put new heads on and tune it properly top and bottom. You know how when tuning a guitar by comparing the 5th fret to an open string and you hear a little wobble when they're not exact? That happens on a drum head. It wasn't obvious to me for a long time and then one day something clicked and I could hear it as clear as day. You get a pitch between two opposite lugs, and you can hear that same type of rub between other pitches between other lugs. The sound of a drum tuned evenly is very very different than one with 4-5 slightly different pitches between each pair of lugs.

This drum very clearly does not have any of those rubs.

It sounds like a single width snare strainer across the bottom. I prefer the double wides except on piccolos.

They heads are tuned medium high with the bottom head higher than the top.

Single ply coated top and clear bottom, no dots or tape.

It's also a very centered hit, there's not a lot of edge ring like when a drum is hit off center.


Mic wise there are a lot of options that will get the same sound. To imitate this, I'd use a 57 on the top and an SDC on the bottom. There's not a lot of bottom mic by my standards maybe 80/20 or so. I prefer closer to 50/50.

I'd use a 1073 for the top, with a little boost in the highs, HPF at 80 (or which ever the freq above 50 is) and probably a little 110 to compensate. The mids might get left alone or maybe a boost at 3k2 or cut at 700. I'd have to hear it to be sure.

The bottom sounds like nothing special has been done.

I'd also record the snare away from the rest of the kit. It's very clean, there are no hardware rattles or sympathetic vibrations. Also, I'd close mic from a little further out than I normally would on a kit. It's amazing how much better a snare will sound with the mic pulled back a little more than is usually logistically possible in the context of a kit.

It doesn't have an exaggerated transient like you get with a transient designer or compression. It's level is even in that mix because it's a sample. I don't hear a gate either. And in making samples, if I wanted a gated sound, I'd use a hand made fade over a gate to get it exactly the way I want it.

There's a good amount of reverb on the snare - more than the rest of the kit.

There's no room sound on it. The cymbals sound close miked with an LDC and it doesn't sound like there's a lot of snare in the cymbal mics.

The kick is pretty wimpy sounding and there aren't layers of guitars, nor are there vocals, so the snare isn't getting masked in a way that it might otherwise in a normal mix. The other thing is there's a consistency because it's a sample that's misleading.

The actual drum with the same signal path played in the context of a kit would sound very different because there'd be sympathetic rings and vibrations as well as differing hits each time. Try making a sample at your next drum session. Have the drummer do individual snare hit and listen to them, The tones will vary pretty drastically from hit to hit. So the tone we're hearing may be a tone that only happens 10-20% of the time out of the drum that was used. It may have been an edge hit and actually ring far less, or a may have been a dead center hit and usually ring far more. I think it's pretty centered.


Personally, I'd use a 57 on the bottom and give it a whole lot more balls for that music. It's not a very big sounding drum. And I'd probably use a double wide strainer - and a 14x6.5.
Old 1st December 2009 | Show parent
  #42
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luctellier's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Caffrey ➡️
I don't think there's much processing on that drum.

If I were to try to recreate that sample, I'd use a 14x5 or 14x5.5 non-wood drum. I'd put new heads on and tune it properly top and bottom. You know how when tuning a guitar by comparing the 5th fret to an open string and you hear a little wobble when they're not exact? That happens on a drum head. It wasn't obvious to me for a long time and then one day something clicked and I could hear it as clear as day. You get a pitch between two opposite lugs, and you can hear that same type of rub between other pitches between other lugs. The sound of a drum tuned evenly is very very different than one with 4-5 slightly different pitches between each pair of lugs.

This drum very clearly does not have any of those rubs.

It sounds like a single width snare strainer across the bottom. I prefer the double wides except on piccolos.

They heads are tuned medium high with the bottom head higher than the top.

Single ply coated top and clear bottom, no dots or tape.

It's also a very centered hit, there's not a lot of edge ring like when a drum is hit off center.


Mic wise there are a lot of options that will get the same sound. To imitate this, I'd use a 57 on the top and an SDC on the bottom. There's not a lot of bottom mic by my standards maybe 80/20 or so. I prefer closer to 50/50.

I'd use a 1073 for the top, with a little boost in the highs, HPF at 80 (or which ever the freq above 50 is) and probably a little 110 to compensate. The mids might get left alone or maybe a boost at 3k2 or cut at 700. I'd have to hear it to be sure.

The bottom sounds like nothing special has been done.

I'd also record the snare away from the rest of the kit. It's very clean, there are no hardware rattles or sympathetic vibrations. Also, I'd close mic from a little further out than I normally would on a kit. It's amazing how much better a snare will sound with the mic pulled back a little more than is usually logistically possible in the context of a kit.

It doesn't have an exaggerated transient like you get with a transient designer or compression. It's level is even in that mix because it's a sample. I don't hear a gate either. And in making samples, if I wanted a gated sound, I'd use a hand made fade over a gate to get it exactly the way I want it.

There's a good amount of reverb on the snare - more than the rest of the kit.

There's no room sound on it. The cymbals sound close miked with an LDC and it doesn't sound like there's a lot of snare in the cymbal mics.

The kick is pretty wimpy sounding and there aren't layers of guitars, nor are there vocals, so the snare isn't getting masked in a way that it might otherwise in a normal mix. The other thing is there's a consistency because it's a sample that's misleading.

The actual drum with the same signal path played in the context of a kit would sound very different because there'd be sympathetic rings and vibrations as well as differing hits each time. Try making a sample at your next drum session. Have the drummer do individual snare hit and listen to them, The tones will vary pretty drastically from hit to hit. So the tone we're hearing may be a tone that only happens 10-20% of the time out of the drum that was used. It may have been an edge hit and actually ring far less, or a may have been a dead center hit and usually ring far more. I think it's pretty centered.


Personally, I'd use a 57 on the bottom and give it a whole lot more balls for that music. It's not a very big sounding drum. And I'd probably use a double wide strainer - and a 14x6.5.
I like people that really knows what they're talking about and you're a good example of that. Thanks for what you bring to this forum!
Old 1st December 2009 | Show parent
  #43
Gear Nut
 
🎧 10 years
i'm going to go ahead and say the player has 98% of what makes a drum sound good. this has been proven to me time and time again.
Old 1st December 2009 | Show parent
  #44
Here for the gear
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Caffrey ➡️
I don't think there's much processing on that drum.
Mike, that was amazing. How long you been doing this? I gotta say that your analysis was very helpful and I thank you a lot for it!

I will definitely start playing around with different micing/tuning/playing techniques to get this sound I'm after.
Old 1st December 2009 | Show parent
  #45
Gear Addict
 
T. Morgan's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Keith Moore ➡️
Are you using the plug in or hardware?

The hardware, haven't tried the plugin yet...
Old 1st December 2009 | Show parent
  #46
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Beyersound's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Caffrey ➡️
I felt the same way until I learned to check phase.
+1! Nice one Mike
Old 1st December 2009 | Show parent
  #47
Lives for gear
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Enderspeaker ➡️
Mike, that was amazing. How long you been doing this? I gotta say that your analysis was very helpful and I thank you a lot for it!

I will definitely start playing around with different micing/tuning/playing techniques to get this sound I'm after.
A long time.

I'm not a drummer, but I've probably spent as much time learning to tune drums as most drummers have. And, I've recorded a lot of great drummers who've brought in plenty of great snares and I've asked a lot of questions.
Old 1st December 2009 | Show parent
  #48
Here for the gear
 
🎧 10 years
So, Ive made this little clip and I think I've almost got the sound I'm after and I am pretty happy with it overall. Keep in mind though that I don't have pro studio monitors though, I am running on Klipschs. =/
I think if I did have studio monitors it would be easier to spot faults in the mix and get the levels evened out a little bit more.

Also, this tune that I've had going on in my head sounds a bit like a song I've heard before. Can anyone name it? I tried looking in all of Disturbed's albums because I swore it was from there but I couldn't find it.

zSHARE - Heavy Rock.wav
There's the link.
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