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  #1  
Old 06-15-2009, 04:29 AM
zwebert31 zwebert31 is offline
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Default Recording Drums

My band was thinking about buying two mics for recording drums

Sterling ST31 to hang through the drop ceiling over the drummers head

and a Nady DM-90 Kick Drum Mic

My question is, "is it possible to record drums effectively with two mics? if so what kind of setup should we used and which mics would you suggest? Id like to keep the mics under 100 dollars each or 200 dollars together..."

Thanks
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Old 06-15-2009, 04:02 PM
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Default Re: Recording Drums

You can definitely get a good drum sound w/ 2 mics. 3 would be better, (1 on the snare), but 2 will definitely work. Point the overhead at the snare and experiment with mic placement. Have someone play the kit and stand on a ladder and put your ears in a few different possible (overhead) mic locations. You're listening for a spot where the drums sound the best to your ear. Mic placement can be crucial, all rooms have different frequency responses and the trick is to find the "sweet spot" in your particular room for mic placement. If you find a sweet spot and retune your drums radically, the sweet spot may not be so sweet anymore. Acoustics are very complex and understanding all the things that affect them helps you to use them to your best advantage.
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Old 06-15-2009, 07:36 PM
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Default Re: Recording Drums

It is deffinatly possible to record a good drum sound with 2 mics. the other day i heard an old 4 track of foxy lady by Hendrix, and the drums where recorded this way and it sounds fantaastic.

you have to put a lot of work in experimenting with placements
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Old 06-15-2009, 07:56 PM
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Default Re: Recording Drums

It really depends on what sort of music/sound you are playing for. If you play something like jazz or softer styles of rock and pop then i would say 3 mics. 2 for overhead and one for the kick drum. However, if it's something loud like metal you want to do then really you'd want to be miking up all of your drums otherwise you'll just probably lose any drums that aren't miked.
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Old 06-15-2009, 08:09 PM
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Default Re: Recording Drums

one question (and one minor point) -

Will you be recording in the same room and at the same time as the rest of the band?

Because you can very effectively get a good drum sound from two mics, but just be aware that the overhead mic will pick up all of the instruments to some degree. So if your band wants to go back and mix down the levels or isolate each instrument - the overhead mic track will always have the full band - especially the lead guitar.
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Old 06-15-2009, 08:12 PM
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Default Re: Recording Drums

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Originally Posted by cnw60 View Post
one question (and one minor point) -

Will you be recording in the same room and at the same time as the rest of the band?

Because you can very effectively get a good drum sound from two mics, but just be aware that the overhead mic will pick up all of the instruments to some degree. So if your band wants to go back and mix down the levels or isolate each instrument - the overhead mic track will always have the full band - especially the lead guitar.
The other good thing about recording seperately is you can use the other mics for the drums too. Which is good.
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Old 06-15-2009, 10:44 PM
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Default Re: Recording Drums

We recorded my first CD, back in 1995, like this. The engineer used two very high-quality mics, set them at about 6 feet up and 10 feet away from the set, at the 10 and 2 o'clock positions. It came out very well.
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Old 06-15-2009, 11:14 PM
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Default Re: Recording Drums

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Originally Posted by Deathmetalconga View Post
We recorded my first CD, back in 1995, like this. The engineer used two very high-quality mics, set them at about 6 feet up and 10 feet away from the set, at the 10 and 2 o'clock positions. It came out very well.
But those were 2 high-quality mics. We're dealing with a $200 budget for 2 mics. Can you get a pair of those cheapy MXL condensers for that price? If so, that might be your best bet, put to the 10 and 2 positions. Make sure you balance the volumes of your drums and cymbals in your playing.
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Old 06-15-2009, 11:44 PM
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Default Re: Recording Drums

The MXL's are certainly in the price range- if you want 4 of them. The Sterling Audio mics, to quote a friend and fellow sound tech, are like "sex in a tube" so that is certainly worth the money.

As to the set up, it is certainly doable, and I have performed and recorded with that set-up, but I would suggest going with two overheads and a kick. And don't bother with the DM-90...it is hardly a real kick mic...if you got two ST-31s instead, you would be much happier with your results. If you are that concerned and really need to stay under $200, then get one ST-31 and then two cheaper condensers (MXL, etc) and mount the ST-31 in front of and away from the kit with the other two over the kit.

But ultimately, two ST-31's at 10 and 2 will do wonders for basic recording
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Old 06-16-2009, 01:38 AM
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Default Re: Recording Drums

Quote:
Originally Posted by caddywumpus View Post
But those were 2 high-quality mics. We're dealing with a $200 budget for 2 mics. Can you get a pair of those cheapy MXL condensers for that price? If so, that might be your best bet, put to the 10 and 2 positions. Make sure you balance the volumes of your drums and cymbals in your playing.
I would only do it with top-of-the mics. Look at this way: instead of needing4 to 8 mics, you will need just two, but they better be really, really good. See if you can rent some. I would use Rode NT5s. They aren't cheap, but do you want a good recording or not? This is simply what it takes.
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