Noise level caused by drumsets

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Post Tue Nov 21, 2006 10:23 am

I just moved to a new appartment and the people here realy seem to hate drums angry... The thing is that I can really get in trouble if I make too much noise...Does anyone know how much noise a drumset makes? (in dB)

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Post Tue Nov 21, 2006 3:17 pm

There's really no set answer for that- depends on the dynamics the drummer uses. From what I've found though, playing in an apartment situation never works out well- you can muffle and play a light as possible, but that big ol' kick drum is always going to drive people crazy!
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Post Sun Nov 26, 2006 10:06 pm

loud enough... get muffling pads.. they work really good. i dont know about cymbals or the bass drums though
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Post Sun Nov 26, 2006 11:07 pm

You should try getting a practice pad drum set...its like and electronic set that doesnt make noise basically.....

or or you get the muffling pads for the toms and cymbals...and get a bass drum practice pad for your feet.....

also look up hansenfutz ( i think thats how you spell it) pedals...they are great for practicing your bass or double bass technigue
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Post Sun Nov 26, 2006 11:09 pm

find out what kind of music your land lord and neighbors like and play it. compromising is swell, huh?

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Post Sun Nov 26, 2006 11:16 pm

I live in an apartment and only play at home like once a week for 10 min. It sucks but you have to do what you have to do. As far as db's go like it says above, it depends on the drummer, drums and dymanics. I would have to say for your neighbors its somthing like when a car is blasting its sterio and the sub woofer is pounding rap music.
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Post Sun Nov 26, 2006 11:39 pm

What I had my students do (the younger ones) was to write a letter explaining who they are and what they do (play drums). Included in this schedule was a practice schedule, and phone #s in case there is a complaint. Then I had the student mail the letter (not hand-deliver it) to each house that was within earshot, as well as mail a copy to him/herself. (This is very important)

Only once did one of my kids have to use this- the police were called due to "excessive noise". However, the kid presented his copy of the letter (sealed and postmarked) to the officer, and the cop ended up siding with my guy.

That all being said, apartments are a different issue. You might have to rent a space for the drums or, weather permitting, go to an office park after-hours and set up in the parking lot. Apartments are closer together.

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Post Sun Nov 26, 2006 11:56 pm

wellll i had that same issue with the leve of noise.
all i did was chuck a sheet over the kit, dress the cymbals up with old tshirts, and for your kick drum (dependig on what kind of kick you have) loosen the spring thingo so that that you dont have to push down hard far for it to hit the head of your bass drum. that will reduce the amount of sound- using no money

Post Mon Nov 27, 2006 12:10 am

while expensive, you might consider the thomas lang practice kit or an electric kit for practicing and using your acoustic drums for gigs.
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Post Mon Nov 27, 2006 7:04 am

If you are that concerned about decibles, I strongly advise you purchase an electronic kit. All the worry about decibels will go right in the cash register with the hard money that you earned doing whateva it is that you do, but it will be worth it . You can choose to use headphones or go for broke and buy a surround system that is made specifically for drums, I recommend the Roland PM-3 system. Hope that helps you. If none of that works for you then I say MOVE.


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Post Mon Nov 27, 2006 8:17 am

I live in an apartment and I have for over two years now.

When a new person moves into an apartment here I go and talk to them and tell them I am a drummer and that I practice at midday every day for up to two hours and also reassure them that I will not play the kit after 6pm.
I have a job that lends itself to me coming home for a couple of hours during the day so I use that as my "kit time" and at night I bring out the practice pad and do rudiments.

I really think people don't mind as long as you give them time frames and they know that you are putting value on them as well.

I also give them permission to slip a note under my door if it is annoying them or if they a home sick. I have never had a note yet because I stick to the time frame.
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Post Mon Nov 27, 2006 9:29 am

well. sells practice pads, cymbal practice pads, and bassdrum beater head covers that do a good job of dampening it up.the whole concideration by letting every person know and all that stuff. also could work too. the electronic kit would eat up alot of money but be a VERY effective option. i dont live in an apartment, but i do live in an odd neighborhood. for me. to keep the decibal level down if i really need to practice, i get old hand towels that are medium thickness, a little bit thin. and i lay them ove the heads, it doesnt have to go over the entire head. but that helps too. and i lay it over the head and then cut them to fit over the rim. not hanging over. and i tape around the rim. for the bass drum, i do the same thing with a long hand towel of same thickness. but i only go flat al the way across the yead. its a little tricky getting the bass towel to stay there but once you get it. its all good. for the snare. same hand towel as t he toms, but there still is the situation with the snare wire itself. you can lay another towel loosely over the bottom head and tape it so that it droops so you can still hear the snare just not loudly. for cymbalsi havent mastered a method. but the whole hand towel(dish towel fro splashes) method seems to work good but you have to tape near the bell and underneatch the rim. the only problem ive had is sometimes i have to take rubbing alcohol and get glue off of the cymbals/rims. other than that. no reall problem. the key is. NEVER tape to the head, it could tear texture off. or the glue it leaves behind even after the alcohol will effect tone. i usualy run the tape around the bottom edge of the rim (from behind) and fold it over the rim and let it grab the towel.
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Post Mon Nov 27, 2006 1:08 pm

If you don't have 1,000 or more for an electronic kit, (I don't and I'm sure most of us don't) then the towel solution works great. I have used it myself. Use gaffer's tape, not duct tape, and you wont have much mess, if any. For cymbals, poke a hole in a spot in the towel and lay it under your top felt before putting on wingnuts. Experiment with different hole placements and you should be able to hang it without it falling off. If you have a couple dollars to spend, mesh heads are a lot cheaper than a whole electronic kit ($50-$75 for a five piece set) and are quieter than towels but they are so quiet in fact, you may miss hearing the little bit of noise you get with the towels.
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Post Mon Nov 27, 2006 6:04 pm

i've read somewhere that a typical drummer playing at his hardest can hit 500 dbs.
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Post Mon Nov 27, 2006 6:39 pm

messeduplefty wrote:i've read somewhere that a typical drummer playing at his hardest can hit 500 dbs.

Over 120 db for any lenghth of time can cause permanent hearing damage and 180 db can kill you. It would probably take somethin on the order of 100 to 200 MILLION watts of power to generate anything even remotely CLOSE to 500 db... possibly much more.

Every increase of 3db roughly equates to doubling the audible volume, so to gain 3db you have to either double the power, double the amount of air moved to generate sound pressure, or some combination of both. The HULK couldn't crank out 500 db. ;)

To address the topic of this post - Mesh heads rule for apartment practice... A set of Pearl Rhythm Travelers is only about 400 bucks new and comes with mesh and ultra-crappy cheap clear heads. Put decent heads on them and they easily become an acceptable small-venue gig kit as well as a near-silent practice kit with the mesh heads.

Hope this helps!