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Mo' Drum micing
Old 30th May 2003
  #1
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Saucyjack's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Mo' Drum micing

Ok for the last year or so I've been using 2 Octava Mc012 as OHs and 421 on Kick and usually a 57 on snare.The OHs are usually a cardoid spaced pair over snare and over floor tom.I've been pretty happy with this sound overall but am starting to get bored with it.Recently I've been experimenting with a Soundelux U195 as a "Front of Kit" mic and smashing it with a Distressor.....I like what this brings to the party and want to incorporate into my drum micing scheme.
I want to keep drum mics to no more than 4-5(preferably 4).I've just acquired a Soundelux U99 and AEA R84 but haven't had much time to put them thru their paces yet.

I'm thinking of trying 421 on kick ,57 or Beyer 201 on snare ,SD U195 as Front of Kick and Maybe SD u99 or AEA R84 as a mono OH...I've never experimented much with Mono OH(always used a Stereo pair in the past),so don't know what to expect.
Pres are API,Greta River NV,Phoenix AudioDRS by the way....

What do you gurus think of the above setup or I'm interested in other placement/methods that would be worth trying....
Old 30th May 2003
  #2
One with big hooves
 
Jay Kahrs's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Try the U99 as a FOK mic. I've never used one there but I have used U67's lot's of times and they're pretty similar. Also, don't smash the FOK mic with compression while tracking. Use enough to even it out, maybe 4:1 or 5:1 tops. Keep the mic low the ground and check the phase with whatever is on the kick. You'll come to love the moving air and bottom it adds to the kick, and if you crush it you'll never get that.
Old 30th May 2003
  #3
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Saucyjack's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Thanks Jay,
I love what the FOK mic does do Kick as well...seems to give it a "thrust".I'll try backing down on the squash.I usually set the mic up about 4 ft high aimed at Kick/snare.
Old 30th May 2003
  #4
Gear Nut
 
drummerman15's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
You might want to try this too: take a monitor speaker like an ns-10 and place it about 8' or so in front of the kick and run it to a good preamp. It adds very nice punchy low end for the kick and the toms. You might find it that it will really help on the toms since it doesn't sound like you are close-micing them. No need to be shy with compression on this one and I'm sure the distressor will work nicely.
Old 30th May 2003
  #5
Gear Maniac
 
Dan-O's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Wow, I'm actually going to post on a technique.

I've also have been using the speaker as FOK lately. Strapping it to the kit ala Alfajerk (thanks for that. Works great). I've been running it through a Sans Amp Bass Driver and varying the drive amount to taste. Then to an API312 or 1272. After the initial shock of seeing it everyone has loved the results.
Old 30th May 2003
  #6
Gear Nut
 
drummerman15's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Strapping it to the kit ala Alfajerk (thanks for that. Works great)
What's this?
Old 30th May 2003
  #7
Gear Maniac
 
Dan-O's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
I can't find the picture Alfa posted of this so maybe he can find it for you. The idea was to use rubber cords (or bungie cords as I do) to strapp a floating 10" speaker to the front of the kick drum. The idea was introduced by Alfa in responce to the speaker stand built by MWangner which can be seen here:

Old 30th May 2003
  #8
Gear Nut
 
drummerman15's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
that's a pretty good idea (now I have a weekend project). What I usually do is place the full speaker on one of those Auralex GRAMMA's to isolate it - works fine.
Old 30th May 2003
  #9
Lives for gear
 
Saucyjack's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Thanks for the ideas....

I've got a band coming in on Sunday...I think I'm going with 4 mic setup....
SDU195-Distressor FOK
SDU99-mono OH
421-Kick
57/201-snare...thinking of trying a Royer or AEA on snare or maybe using one of the ribbons as FOK and U195 as snare mic??
ah..... decisions,decisions
Old 30th May 2003
  #10
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henge's Avatar
Try a Shure Beta 52 on the kik. They sound really nice.
Old 30th May 2003
  #11
Jax
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🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by Saucyjack
thinking of trying a Royer or AEA on snare or maybe using one of the ribbons as FOK and U195 as snare mic??
ah..... decisions,decisions
Ribbons don't like being smacked by sticks. If the drummer isn't wild, it might not get hit, but I don't think I'd take the chance.

OTOH, a 121 in FOK is a beautiful thing.

I have yet to like the sound of my 121's as OH's. Too muddy.
Old 30th May 2003
  #12
Gear Maniac
 
Dan-O's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
thinking of trying a Royer or AEA on snare or maybe using one of the ribbons as FOK
Funny, I'm going through almost the same dilemma for tomorrow. I'm undecided on a either a Royer 121 or the speaker for FOK. Really have wanted to try the 121's on the kit but can't seem to pry them away from the guitar amps at the moment.
Old 30th May 2003
  #13
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littledog's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Even though I still tend (out of habit) to use anywhere from 8-12 tracks on drums, I'm actually getting almost the entire sound I need these days, except for some reinforcement on the kick, from my overhead pairs.

This has only been true since i started using Recorderman's two drumstick technique. Here is a description in his own words:

1. Place the "Left" overhead mic directly over the center of the snare at the height of two drum sticks-held end-to-end(from the center of the snare, straight up, to the capsule of the mic).
2. Next; take the drum sticks (still held end-to-end) from the center of the snare over to above your ( i.e." the drummers") right shoulder and place your "right" overhead mic here.
3. Fine tune the placement by using a mic cable and measurinb the distance from the center of the Kick to each of these mics is also equidistant from the kick and snare.
4. listen with headphones and have the drummer lightly hit his kick drum, and adjust the "right" mics angle until the kick is in the middle of your "image".

What this has done is:
1. Place the snare & the kick in the center when you pan these mics hard left and right.
2. Place the overheads in a position which is in-phase with the kick,snare and overheads.
3. balanced the over heads so that the Rack and floor Toms (as well as all cymbals) are correctly balanced.

this is actually a great "picture" of the kit at this point. maybe a hair of Top end (depending on what mics your using) and a little this, and a Kick mic. BUT whatever you add (snare mics, toms, etc) you'll now be inphase. This also makes your snare & toms louder inrelation to the cymbals & is more of a true OH mic set-up (Not just "cymbal" mic's) It may look weird but try it...it truelly ROCKS


The difficult part of this technique is finding the exact spot where the over the shoulder mic will be placed so that it maintains a geometric relationship to the over-snare mic that both are equidistant from the center of the snare and the center of the kick. The exact spot will differ with each drummer's set-up, and may occasionally be pretty close to the drummer's head, which may freak tehm out a bit. But if you can get the geometry right, you can get an unbelievably tight image of the set and slamming sound even in a fairly crappy room. You may even get all the snare, HH, cymbals, and toms you'll need from just the OH's. You'll still probably want some extra kick though...
Old 30th May 2003
  #14
Gear Nut
 
drummerman15's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
If you have 2 Royers, try them as overheads. Really nice. For me they tend to take alot of the harsh high end out without losing definition. If just 1 Royer, try using it as a "spank" mic.
Old 30th May 2003
  #15
Gear Maniac
 
Dan-O's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
If you have 2 Royers, try them as overheads. Really nice. For me they tend to take alot of the harsh high end out without losing definition.
I will most defiantly try them as overheads. Right now I'm in love with the Beyer M260's for overhead duty. Together with the Phoenix pre's.

Quote:
If just 1 Royer, try using it as a "spank" mic.
Not sure what your definition is of "spank" mic, but I have finally found a use for my Rode NTK 3 - 4' out angled down a bit to the snare side of the kit. Anything close to a spank mic?

Quote:
...since i started using Recorderman's two drumstick technique
I never leave home without it! 75% of the time it's right on.
Old 30th May 2003
  #16
Gear Nut
 
drummerman15's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Not sure what your definition is of "spank" mic
Yea, sorry. I thought about that after I wrote it. Basically, what I do is use it as a spare room mic of sorts. I try to place it about 8-10' away, pretty close to the floor. Then, compress it with an 1176 with all the buttons pushed in. I used to track it without the compressor and take care of it on mixdown, but now, I'm brave enough to take it to tape (I should say lazy). It can add some real "snap" to the drums. Also, i've found that it really brings out the ride and hat so that I almost never bring the hat and ride signals into the fold. I guess that's my best definition of a spank mic.
Old 30th May 2003
  #17
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Saucyjack's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
The "recorderman technique"is what I have been using as well and it does work well.....I've used it for my last 3 projects and I'm getting bored thus the start of this thread..
Old 30th May 2003
  #18
Gear Nut
 
drummerman15's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
The exact spot will differ with each drummer's set-up, and may occasionally be pretty close to the drummer's head, which may freak tehm out a bit.
Screw the drummer....what about me?!?!? Its gonna freak ME out just a little bit to watch someone swingin' sticks dangerously close to a pair of $2K mics. A drumstick averages about 16" making the mics only 32" above the snare and just a little above the drummer's head....I don't think I would even trust myself with that setup! I'll try anything, but how do you insure that your mics don't receive a beating too? Also, it seems that some of the cymbals (depending on how the drummer sets up) will be above the level of the mics.
Old 31st May 2003
  #19
Gear Maniac
 
Dan-O's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Gottcha. Since my 1176 is usually elsewhere in the may lay, the Distressor usually "spanks" the far room mic for me. But funny enough I've found some of the mid-priced gear to be effective here too. Especially when the Distressor is on the bass were I love it to be. I've even used the RNC with fair results. Not really colorful or what have you, but completely usable.

Quote:
I don't think I would even trust myself with that setup! I'll try anything, but how do you insure that your mics don't receive a beating too?
I've rarely had a problem. They get a bump now and again, usually from the drummer standing up, but nothing close to damage from flailing. They don't have to be exactly 32" either. Take'm up a bit. Take'm back a bit.

Quote:
The "recorderman technique"is what I have been using as well and it does work well.....I've used it for my last 3 projects and I'm getting bored thus the start of this thread..
Understood. I really like the idea of the AEA mono overhead. Mostly because ribbons sound so dam good there IMHO. The U195 out front and the U99 over the floor maybe all you need.
Old 31st May 2003
  #20
One with big hooves
 
Jay Kahrs's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Spanky compression? Two words...



Alesis Microlimiter.

Old 31st May 2003
  #21
Lives for gear
 
Tim L's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by Jay Kahrs
Alesis Microlimiter.

No ****? It's been a few years since I patched one but a bigger piece of **** I don't remember using, even worse than the 3630... hmm, I guess everything does have it's place...
Old 31st May 2003
  #22
Lives for gear
 
littledog's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by drummerman15
Screw the drummer....what about me?!?!? Its gonna freak ME out just a little bit to watch someone swingin' sticks dangerously close to a pair of $2K mics. A drumstick averages about 16" making the mics only 32" above the snare and just a little above the drummer's head....I don't think I would even trust myself with that setup! I'll try anything, but how do you insure that your mics don't receive a beating too? Also, it seems that some of the cymbals (depending on how the drummer sets up) will be above the level of the mics.
Contrary to what you might see on rock videos, very few studio drummers lift their sticks up over their head or take other variations of huge backswings to play the drums. No one has ever hit my over the snare mic with a stick, or as far as I know, even come close. But I also don't usually get drummers who put their cymbals six feet in the air either.

As Dan-O said, the worst that usually happens is a glancing bump with the head or shoulder to the right side mic if the drummer forgets about it and stands up leaning to the right. I can see if you were using an old RCA ribbon or something equally fragile where that might still make you nervous, though. Usually I'm not using anything more expensive (or fragile) than a Josephson C42 at about $450. Oktava MC012's (good ones) ain't bad either for this, and they're so cheap they are practically disposable!
Old 31st May 2003
  #23
One with big hooves
 
Jay Kahrs's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
I've had a few drummers whack the mic that's over their right shoulder. It doesn't happen too often but when it does they apoloigze and say they're going to calm down on the next take. I've actually had more problems getting the stand out of their way then the mic. I should get a big 'ol Atlas with the 6' boom.
Old 2nd June 2003
  #24
Gear Head
 
jbchef's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Saucyjack,

Congrats on your purchase!

I recently did a few o/h micing with the R84.

In a small boxy/dead room, a blumlein pair 3-5 ft away from the drum,
a d112 inside the kick, front head closed (that's what he's got?)
sm 57 on the snare.

It was a day before tapeop. He asked me whether i could come show him a thing or two. I came over and he's got AT 4033 as his overhead right now.

When he heard the R84 as blumlein 3 ft away, chest level, he was astounded and can't believe how huge his drums sound. We didn't want to experiment with the overhead pair since he's got a real low ceiling.
Play around with the mic and put into consideration your acoustic space plus use the advantage of the figure-8 and null figure of the mic. the R84 will be a good tool for your recording.

FYI, Wes did a (15-20 page, can't remember how long exactly) essay on ribbon mics, facts and myths. That will give more ideas and help you understand more about ribbons in general.

I envy that soundelux

Cheers,
MOKO
Old 2nd June 2003
  #25
Lives for gear
 
Saucyjack's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Thanks MOKO,
I tracked some drums yesterday...SDu99 mono OH,SDu195 FOK thru Distressor, 421 Kick,201 Snare sounded pretty good.
I'm loving the R84 for Gtrs...Tonite I'm going to try R84 on FOK with some Distessor.
Old 2nd June 2003
  #26
Gear Maniac
 
Dan-O's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
When he heard the R84 as blumlein 3 ft away, chest level, he was astounded and can't believe how huge his drums sound.
I've been itchin to try blumlein with the Royers.
Old 3rd June 2003
  #27
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Saucyjack's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Ok,
I'll bite.....

Since I've got the R84 and a Royer 121 (both Fig8)...I could do a blumlein pair right or does the pair need to be same mic?

Isn't Blumlein 2 fig8 patterns crossed at 90 degrees?
Enlighten me O wise ones
Old 3rd June 2003
  #28
Gear Maniac
 
Dan-O's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Isn't Blumlein 2 fig8 patterns crossed at 90 degrees?
Yep. As I've never tried it I really shouldn't comment. But my understanding is that the room can be a major factor in it's success or failure. As jbchef commented.
Old 3rd June 2003
  #29
Gear Head
 
jbchef's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by Saucyjack
Ok,
I'll bite.....

Since I've got the R84 and a Royer 121 (both Fig8)...I could do a blumlein pair right or does the pair need to be same mic?

Isn't Blumlein 2 fig8 patterns crossed at 90 degrees?
Enlighten me O wise ones
Technically, yes you can do a blumlein pair with two figure eight microphone. However, having said that, it would be so much better doing blumlein with two identical microphones.

Just like it is better to do x-y/ortf with two identical microphones.

The problem that I see with doing blumlein or any other stereo technique microphone with two different microphones are that the left and right won't sound the same. R121 and R84 has very different frequency response.

Having said this, try it, and let us know how it sounds

Cheers,
Moko
Old 3rd June 2003
  #30
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dave-G's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by Jay Kahrs
I've had a few drummers whack the mic that's over their right shoulder. It doesn't happen too often but when it does they apoloigze and say they're going to calm down on the next take. I've actually had more problems getting the stand out of their way then the mic. I should get a big 'ol Atlas with the 6' boom.
I once had a drummer nearly brain himself on the thumb-screw sticking out of the counterweight on the end of one of those Atlas booms. The blood from the small headwound made him look like "Carrie".

The other hazard to this over-the-shoulder technique (or benefit, depending on your perspective) is if you've got a "grunter". Michael Urbano (for example) makes some amazing noises during fills. It's fun just listening to the overheads soloed (whether close to the shoulder or not).

-dave
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