Does anyone know if a alternative (read less expensive) interior mic system for drums exists? And while on the subject...If the mics are left in the heads for an extended period of time can this REALLY
damage the diaphram?
I've got a set of UKKO contact mics and at first I really liked them. I had them set up on my drums in our practice space (e.g. the garage :wink and tested them out with a small mixer. They are definitely not something I would use to record with but that wasn't the reason I got them! For stage use I was interested in isolation and in not having mics and mic cables visible to the audience.
We were getting ready to go to a show, so I at our practice a couple of days before the show, I plugged them up to our regular FOH mixer to test them and one of the tom mics started overloading the channel even with the input gain all the way down. Touching the external mount for the mic cable caused the mic to pop horribly. I soldiered on and at the gig tried to use them during sound check and a different tom mic than the one before started popping and overloading the channel. I ended up just using the one on the snare and putting my regular mics on the toms. The next show on the next night, I just used my regular mics and didn't even try to mess with the UKKO mics at all.
The actual product quality is nice, the contacts are easy to install, and the external unit for each one looks nice, but the external units are a little bulky. They tried to make them look like existing hardware, so they are shiny chrome plastic and look like lugs. I ended up mounting the external unit to the vent hole on the toms, and used the clip for the rim on the snare. I am a little upset due to the fact that I hadn't even put them through one load-out/load-in and they already started acting flaky. I have a support call in with B-Band and I will let everyone know just how that turns out.
Overall, the idea is a really good one. My snare (Pork Pie "Big Black") sounds like a pre-eq'ed snare from a recording studio through the snare mic, and all I needed to do was add a little reverb for "room" for a sound that I would be happy pushing through the mains. The toms sound punchy and have good tone and excellent isolation, of course. I didn't get the kick drum mic, but I have heard that sounds really good, too. I really want to like these, so if B-Band can resolve my support issues to my satisfaction I wouldn't hesitate to recommend them.