Re: Miking Drums; where to start...?
I, personally, hate the sound that only a couple of mics generate. You know, an overhead, snare and kick mic, a la Led Zeppelin. Yuck! It makes drums sound hollow and less full, which is not at all like what drums really sound like. I MUCH prefer individual mics on each drum, and either one or two overheads, or one overhead and a hi-hat mic. That said, I use in-ear monitors which allow me to hear every nuance of everything. Even if you're listening through a regular floor wedge which really doesn't provide that great of a sound quality, there's a difference with full mic'ing and "sparse" mic'ing or whatever you want to call it.
On the subject, price does not always tell the story. Because I was on a budget at the time, and needed something quick, I took a chance on some inexpensive mics from a little known company, named Kam Instruments, whose advertising and sound clips boast them as sounding better than some Shures. Of course, I didn't believe any of that, but took a chance anyway, thinking if they sounded halfway decent, they would serve me well until I could later afford to upgrade Audix, Sennheisers or Shures. This was 3 years ago, and I still have not "upgraded". Their frequency response range just seems right to me, and they sound great.
I started them on my Tama Royalstars, and was surprised at how good they sounded. In fact, I had someone tell me how much they liked the "thick" sound of my drums, and they wanted to know how I EQ'd them. They were surprised when I told them no EQ change at all. I then put some on my Mapex Saturns with the same great results. I later got another set for a church I played at that has a Ludwig kit, and then yet another set for another church with a Gretsch Stage Custom kit, after the worship leader and I A/B'd them with the Audix F series they already had. I think that says something when they already had the Audix set and had me get them a set of these.
I had direct discussions with Kam, the owner, in regards to their original plastic mic clamps, which were a bit lacking, and was pleasantly surprised that he listened. They later began to include some very nice mic clamps, which have given me no trouble whatsoever. I think they now have a plastic/metal combo clamp and an all metal clamp. Since I've developed a good rapport with Kam, he sent me some of the plastic/metal ones to try out, but I like the all metal clamps better, myself.
No, I do not represent the company in any way, nor am I recommending you buy them over everything else. But, I do recommend that you at least check them out before you make a decision, because both churches that got them, and I, still use them today, and are not looking at any others, any time soon.
2011 Mapex Saturn - 8, 10, 12, 14 fl, 16 fl, 22x18
1974 Tama Royalstar - 8,10,12, 13,16 fl, 22x14