Recording Drums

wolfendenstate

New member
Hi,
I was just wondering how many drummers out there record at home, and if so do you have a full drum mic set up?
You see, I'm thinking about buying some, but I'm a bit worried that I'll shell out all my hard earned cash, then be disappointed with the results.
My band has done some recording with two cheap ambient mics that I picked up years ago, if you want to hear how the drums sound with them, visit http://www.myspace.com/wolfendenstate
If anyone has some sound files of drums they've recorded at home, please pass on a link, and if you know how little or much eq-ing was involved.
Cheers
Dan
 

Johnny Cat

New member
I've recorded drums at home before. I'm afraid I don't have any clips I can share with you at the moment though. But I can tell you that depending on the sound you're going for, you can get a very very good sound with only a handful of decent quality mikes. Try and get your drums to sound the best that they can first in the room that you want to use to record. I think that's the single most important thing before anything else.

Then figure out what config you want to use. You can mike a kit quite effectively with only 4-6 mikes. One between the hats and snare, one between the two rack toms, one to pick up the floor tom and ride, and one for the kick. And you can add two more if you want as overheads for your crashes. Or you can do the classic jazz config. Two overheads either crisscrossing each other (XY config) or hanging straight down just over the hi-hat side and ride cymbal side, a mike on the kick and a mike on the snare. This can yield excellent results as well.

EQing depends on how many of those mikes are going onto their own tracks. It also really depends on how well your drums are tuned to begin withThat's why I prefer giving each mike its own track, and each instrument its own mike. You can tweak its EQ better. The more things you have on one mic, when you adjust frequencies for say your 12" tom, your 13" tom is also going to be effected if you have one mike picking up both rack toms. But that can work with some experimentation and perseverance.

Practice is very important. You may very well be disappointed with your initial results if you're new at it, but just keep at it and learn everything you can. You'll get it eventually. :) Good luck.
 

Mad_cow

New member
Yeah I record all the time, I'll ahve a sound file up for you tomorrow, I only use an SM-57 mic in an overhead positian, but they sound amazing,
 
I've actually gotten quite into home recording. If you want to hear what results I've achieved, check out http://www.myspace.com/92919938
or my personal page which is http://www.myspace.com/slickitaliandrummer
There are a few songs that I recorded with band in my garage. I used:
-(2) Shure Beta 52 Bass drum mics (1 for each bass drum)
-a clip-on radio shack snare mic (it's actually pretty damn good for $50)
-a Shure BG4.1 condenser for the overhead
-(3) Shure sm57's (1 near the hats, 1 between the rack toms, and 1 near the floor toms)
I ran the bass drums through and Furman EQ then through a compressor/limiter then through and 16 channel mixer before finally into a digital 8 track recorder. All other mics went into the mixer then the recorder. Hope this helps.
 

Chad Scott

New member
I listened to your music--pretty good sound, but I think with more mic's will come a better quality! The levels are off...Micing the drums is an art in itself so studying mic placement on line or at a studio would do wonders..That will teach you the dinamic of each mic and what mic's to buy. Separating each drum to me is important so I can go back and get the sound i want per drum, while leveling. An even sound throughout your drumset is important! Drums are by far the hardest to get so do a bunch of studying & good luck!! I hope this helped...
 

Jaki

New member
I use compressor mic's for the cymbals, triggerd kick drums, compressor mic's for the toms and snare. Compressor mic's are alot better than drum mic's I find as they pick up all the high and all the low end. SO if your toms are bassy but with a high beater attack then you won't get a muffled typical drum mic sound. Though I guess it depends on how much money you want to spend.

I use Cubase 4, Fruityloops 6 XXL Edition.

For recording through the module, I have the output ( red and white leads ) into a mixer into a recording device running either Fruityloops or Cubase or some other type of recording software.

A mixer is needed for good recordings.

No point in spending hundreds on studio recordings when you can get a better sound at home.
 

jdub

New member
the good news is getting good mics for drums won't totally break your bank, since most of them are affordable dynamic mics. a beta 52 is 200, 57's are 100, and the cheap chinese condensers do a fair job (get a pair). you can find all of that used on ebay. 4 mics well-placed is a good start.

most people that know what they are doing say that the mic preamp is more important than the mic itself...so keep that in mind too.
 

jwoo10

New member
I've just finished my 3rd cd project (tracking from my home studio) and collaborating with musicians from all over the world..

more Q's// look me up

hear some of the songs I've done at my www.myspace.com/jwoo10 site
 
What are compressor mics? do you mean condenser? You can get alot better, more authentic sounding kick drums using mics. Triggering your kick is cheating. it means you have no patience and that you cant tune drums. Studio Recordings will always sound nicer. The acoustics are controlled. Unless you spend hundreds of dollars in the first place to control the acoustics at home.. the studio will always sound more professional.


Jaki":5kegl8tu said:
I use compressor mic's for the cymbals, triggerd kick drums, compressor mic's for the toms and snare. Compressor mic's are alot better than drum mic's I find as they pick up all the high and all the low end. SO if your toms are bassy but with a high beater attack then you won't get a muffled typical drum mic sound. Though I guess it depends on how much money you want to spend.

I use Cubase 4, Fruityloops 6 XXL Edition.

For recording through the module, I have the output ( red and white leads ) into a mixer into a recording device running either Fruityloops or Cubase or some other type of recording software.

A mixer is needed for good recordings.

No point in spending hundreds on studio recordings when you can get a better sound at home.
 

CooknessMunster

New member
Well it really depends on what you are going to use the recording for....just to hear yourself practice just use a mic in the middle of the room...for demo or professional recording......go get a small protools system or if you can find a old reel to reel 8 trak....a teac or fostex....you can't beat the sound of analog drums....bass too. Good preamps are a must too. Most importantly....it is your home take the time to experiment get it down perfect.....it isn't like the seconds are costing you money. Experiment with mic placement different mics on different drums different preamp mic combos, placement off drums in the room. The little things can make a huge differnece and you are getting good practical experience.
 

funkdrmr

New member
My band's myspace has a couple of sound clips: http://www.myspace.com/satellitegrey

Unfortunately, the quality of the kick sound on those is crap, but I dealt with it at the time. I have some MUCH better tracks coming out soon that I'll share when completed.

On to some tips if I can.

1. The 2 most important parts of a drum sound are a GOOD ROOM and GOOD TUNING. If those 2 things are in place, the rest is actually very easy.

2. The next most important part is the player.

3. Good mics & preamps are beneficial, but don't think you can't get a professional sound without them. Using a D112, 57's, e609's on toms, an MXL V69 and Rode NT1A for OH's, I'm actually getting a better sound through my Firepod than at the studio I work at. The studio is equipped with Neve, Focusrite, Avalon, ProTools HD, Neumann(sp?), AKG, Royer and other high quality mics, etc......

The difference? Tuning, and time put in. I've spent hours upon hours moving mics mere INCHES and comparing. Each individual drum, the overheads, then all again, until I got it right. I moved stuff around in my room so I could tame some early reflections, and other things of that nature.

I agree that drums to tape can sound great, but unless you really know how to push the levels for the right amount of tape compression, that magic isn't going to shine. There are so many other things that can be done to make a drum mix sound great. FWIW, there are actually quite a few good sounding tunes you hear on the radio currently that are mixed In The Box....no tape.

If it might help someone here, I'd like to suggest a simple cheap setup that can get anyone started recording drums.

1. AKG D112, Shure Beta 52, Audix D6 for kick.
2. SM57 for snare
3. Some MXL 993's with the optional omni capsules for overheads.
4. Grab a decent interface like a firepod and go to town.
5. Find some DAW software you can learn to use quickly to minimize frustration. ProTools LE IS NOT THE ONLY OPTION. Actually, interfaces like the Firepod generally come with a free version of Cubase that can be used quite effectively.

All in all, less than $1K, and if bought used, MUCH cheaper. Get a good drum sound with that, then figure out where you can improve.

Be careful, though....buying gear is ADDICTIVE!
 

funkdrmr

New member
deepestblue_06@yahoo.com":3h164cgl said:
Triggering your kick is cheating. it means you have no patience and that you cant tune drums. Studio Recordings will always sound nicer. The acoustics are controlled. Unless you spend hundreds of dollars in the first place to control the acoustics at home.. the studio will always sound more professional.
Sorry deepestblue, but your post is kind of contradictory. I'm interested in knowing what "Studio Recordings" you would reference when recording a kick drum of your own?
 
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