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Old 10-27-2010, 07:07 PM
KONA KONA is offline
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Default Microphones & associated gear for acoustic drums

Hi - I may not be in the right Forum area but maybe you can help.

I may want to mic my acoustic drums up one day and I'm just starting to look at gear. I have some ideas but I thought I'd ask here and maybe get some ideas from drummers that have already been down this road.....for years/decades.

I want to have my rack toms (3), 2 floor toms, bd, snare, hihat and cymbals all miced up. So what are some great mics......not cheap but not thousands $$$ you know what I mean. I'm looking for mics that are excellant and time tested. I'm looking for a good mixing board - Behringer, Mackie, Yamaha etc.

What you say.......experts?

Thanks,
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Old 10-27-2010, 10:12 PM
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Default Re: Microphones & associated gear for acoustic drums

There are tons of threads on this very subject. I'll sum up what I usually say:

Shure 57s on snare and toms, AKG D112 for kick drum...this combo gives you a pretty good sound that you can color as you wish with EQ and effects and such

Audix mics: I-5 on snare, D-2 on rack toms, D-4 on floor toms, D-6 on bass drum...this will give you more of a "punchy" drum sound, great for rock. These mics are pretty heavily pre-EQed, and if you like their sound, it takes a lot of the guess work out of how your drums are going to sound.

As for overheads, Either a matching set of AKG C1000s or Rode NT5s will work great for live sound, but if you are looking for a set of studio mics, they will work, but condensers with a larger diaphragm will work a bit nicer for that nice "open" studio sound.

As for mixers, STAY AWAY from Behringer, and I've heard that you should stay away from Mackie as well...they are known for having dependability issues. Are you looking to create a sub-mix for your drums, or amplify them yourself?
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Old 10-27-2010, 10:26 PM
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Default Re: Microphones & associated gear for acoustic drums

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Originally Posted by caddywumpus View Post
Shure 57s on snare and toms, AKG D112 for kick drum...this combo gives you a pretty good sound that you can color as you wish with EQ and effects and such

As for mixers, STAY AWAY from Behringer, and I've heard that you should stay away from Mackie as well...they are known for having dependability issues. Are you looking to create a sub-mix for your drums, or amplify them yourself?
definitely can't go wrong with the 57s and d112. these are time-tested and a conventional combination for good reason.

i also agree with caddy about staying away from the behringers. as for the mackies, older ones that are built in the states are good workhorses and quite dependable. but avoid the newer ones that aren't built in the states.

i've also used cad mics in school. you can get a combo for cheap. obviously they aren't the best, but they will do if you are on a budget. depends on what your applications are going to be.
http://www.long-mcquade.com/products...m_Mic_Pack.htm
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Old 10-27-2010, 10:45 PM
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Default Re: Microphones & associated gear for acoustic drums

I am partial to Audio Technia PRO 35 condenser mics for snare and toms. These are small and clip right onto the rim and can handle amazing amounts of sound. Shure 57s are very bulky and that is my main beef with them. I use a Shure Beta 56 for the bass and Behringer condensers for overheads (not the best brand, but surprisingly good for the money).

I have had a Mackie board and it has been very reliable.
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Old 10-28-2010, 03:08 AM
KONA KONA is offline
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Default Re: Microphones & associated gear for acoustic drums

Thanks everyone for your great responses........I have now got some choices narrowed down.

Anyone use the Yammi mixers?
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Old 10-28-2010, 05:53 AM
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Default Re: Microphones & associated gear for acoustic drums

I use a combination of Audix and Sennheiser mics. The Sennheiser e602s remind me a lot of SM57s without the bulk, plus they have a built in clip that's very handy. The Audix mics are hard to beat for punchy drum sounds, an the D-vice mount works reasonably well. I end up using the 602s on rack toms, Audix D4 for floor toms (these sound very fat, warm, and punchy), an Audix D1 or e602 on the snare, and D6 inside the bass drum. Behringer condensers for overheads - they work well enough and are so cheap they are almost disposable.

I always get compliments on my drum sound, so I can recommend these mics without reserve.

The Yamaha mixer with on-board compression and 3-band EQ is a good choice. Costs about 380 bucks, I think.
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Old 10-28-2010, 06:22 AM
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Default Re: Microphones & associated gear for acoustic drums

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Originally Posted by KONA View Post
Thanks everyone for your great responses........I have now got some choices narrowed down.

Anyone use the Yammi mixers?
Yamaha makes undoubtedly some of the best professional mixers on the market. I love my original version of the O1v. The new one is the O1v96, which is even better. I also have one of their small MG124cx mixers, and that's perfect for the smaller jobs. Your choice of mixer is dependent on how you are going to record. If you just need to go into your computer, an interface that can take up to 8-mics would be good, then you can bypass having a mixer.

But I'll tell ya', when I had that Yamaha O1v connected to an old Tascam DA-88 8-track tape recorder (this machine absolutely kills the Alesis ADAT), that was a complete 8-track studio right there with professional quality sound that you could actually mix a hit record on!
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Old 10-28-2010, 08:28 AM
KONA KONA is offline
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Default Re: Microphones & associated gear for acoustic drums

Thanks Bo - that's what I wanted to hear.
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Old 10-28-2010, 09:24 AM
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Default Re: Microphones & associated gear for acoustic drums

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Thanks Bo - that's what I wanted to hear.
Cool. Have you discussed how you're recording? I haven't read the whole thread. Are you computer based or are you going old school? Funny thing is, I've just done all those videos I posted with a Zoom R16 recorder - it does 8-in at once, but you can record 16 tracks. For simple demos, that little package rocks. It lacks phantom power on all inputs (you only get it on 5&6 and 13&14), and there's no built-in compressor, but like one of those old four-track cassette studios of yester-year, it makes you learn how to lay down tracks in a consistent manner.

How I did the videos was to record all the audio live into the R16, but simultaneously record the video with a separate camcorder (the Kodak Zi8, in this case). The R16 allowed me to do a nice mix down of the audio tracks. Then I dumped both the audio and the video into iMovie on my Mac, line both the audio and video up together, and voila! An OK video with incredibly passable audio - all for less then $500 (this is of course, minusing the Mac and the microphones).
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Old 10-28-2010, 01:48 PM
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Default Re: Microphones & associated gear for acoustic drums

didn't read the rest of the thread (sorry).

snare - Sennheiser MD441
toms - sennheiser MD421
kick - audio technica ATM25 (if you can find one).
overheads - at4050 or KSM44 or c414

some of these may be a bit pricey for you.
check out production forums like gearslutz.com for (lots) of opinions on "which x is best for y?".
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Old 10-28-2010, 04:23 PM
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Default Re: Microphones & associated gear for acoustic drums

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didn't read the rest of the thread (sorry).

snare - Sennheiser MD441
toms - sennheiser MD421
kick - audio technica ATM25 (if you can find one).
overheads - at4050 or KSM44 or c414

some of these may be a bit pricey for you.
check out production forums like gearslutz.com for (lots) of opinions on "which x is best for y?".
I second the ATM 25. I use one of those on my kick sometimes as well and it's a great affordable bass drum mic. Works good on floor toms also.
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Old 10-28-2010, 06:18 PM
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Default Re: Microphones & associated gear for acoustic drums

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Originally Posted by Deathmetalconga View Post
I second the ATM 25. I use one of those on my kick sometimes as well and it's a great affordable bass drum mic. Works good on floor toms also.
yeah, you could also use an RE-20 or something similar, in which case you would have a mic which is great for male vocals too.
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Old 10-28-2010, 06:30 PM
Mike Armstrong Mike Armstrong is offline
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Default Re: Microphones & associated gear for acoustic drums

I have the Yammi MG166XUSB. It's one of the best, affordable (the 'no Effects' MG166USB is even cheaper), high quality mixing boards on the market. It's only drawback is no Firewire, just USB. If you must have Firewire your either going to have to do without other important features for drums, like Compression, or your going to have to look into the next higher category of mixers (ie much more expensive).
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Old 11-01-2010, 03:11 AM
KONA KONA is offline
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Default Re: Microphones & associated gear for acoustic drums

Lots of stuff to think about here........thanks.

No Bo - I'm not going to be recording. I'm not even going to buy the mics & board yet...just gathering info. in case I want to mic up my kit some day. I think my 58 Gretsch with the calfhide heads and old Zildjian cymbals would sound pretty nice going through a mixing board - I just want to hear it that's all.....and I'd go from there (record etc maybe).

I thought I might even want to try some triggers & go that route ....electronically...for something different.

Thanks,
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Old 11-01-2010, 09:32 AM
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Default Re: Microphones & associated gear for acoustic drums

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Originally Posted by KONA View Post
Lots of stuff to think about here........thanks.

No Bo - I'm not going to be recording. I'm not even going to buy the mics & board yet...just gathering info. in case I want to mic up my kit some day. I think my 58 Gretsch with the calfhide heads and old Zildjian cymbals would sound pretty nice going through a mixing board - I just want to hear it that's all.....and I'd go from there (record etc maybe).

I thought I might even want to try some triggers & go that route ....electronically...for something different.

Thanks,
I'm surprised you'd consider triggers on your '58s, but it's cool you're open to thinking about it. Well, another thing to consider since you're just thinking about it, is just to build up a system you could use for anything. If you paired up a number of Shure SM57 or SM58 microphones with the aforementioned Yamaha O1v, you have a good deal of classic with one of the cleanest boards ever. This will translate your classic sound in a pretty pristine way. All I own are SM57s and 58s and that's what I've been using for my recent recordings I've been posting up. Of course, I have two condenser overheads (also generic, but high quality AKG and Audio Technicas), but basically it's a standard mic collection. This collection is rounded out by a fairly cheap side-address vocal mic that can be used as an overhead, as well. I don't have anything that's just for drums.

Some may argue that you can sound so much better with the right tools to begin with, but I'm a professional soundman by trade and I like to be able to cover alot of bases with what I own. When I'm at work we basically can use whatever we want and we get new stuff sent to us all the time, but I could never own it all! I do like how certain mics are tailored for certain things (like bass drum mics), but then again, with the right circuitry in that mixing board, I can make any mic sound OK for whatever I put it on. You'd be surprised how much you can do with sweepable EQ - I could spend hours tweaking EQ before I got to anything else checking out different tones. It's wonderful!

Here's to hoping you move on this sooner than later. It's an education all right, but one I think you'll get into as time goes on. Being able to translate your acoustic sound into a tangible product for others to listen to is actually pretty cool.
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Old 11-01-2010, 07:55 PM
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Default Re: Microphones & associated gear for acoustic drums

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You'd be surprised how much you can do with sweepable EQ - I could spend hours tweaking EQ before I got to anything else checking out different tones. It's wonderful!
Even though I posted a list of mics previously, I back this sentiment 100%. using EQ to take away frequencies is a beautiful thing.
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Old 11-02-2010, 03:42 AM
KONA KONA is offline
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Default Re: Microphones & associated gear for acoustic drums

"Sweepable EQ?"
Man - I'm so far behind all this stuff I don't even know what that is - haha. I have never recorded my drums - other than using my digital Canon PowerShot on the Video setting a few times - I thought that sounded pretty good ...of course the camera has a sterio mic pickup built into it.......is that hitec or what - lol. I may sound like a feakin hillbilly (not that there's anything wrong with that) but I'm totally new at micing drums.....micing anything for that matter. I've only got back into drumming in the last three years after taking a 31 year break. I don't think the microphone had been invented yet when I played drum = long-tima-go.........
It's just that a friend - that happens to be a fantastic drummer who lives in another city - has said on a few occasions that he'd love to hear my drums all miced up.

I think I will buy one of those "box-sets" of mics from Long & McQuade for example and get a Yammi mixing board and see what happens. Or just get some mics I can use for everything....that might be the ticket. This is all just for fun around the home (drum room).

I do agree with you BO.....
"Being able to translate your acoustic sound into a tangible product for others to listen to is actually pretty cool."
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Old 11-02-2010, 08:07 AM
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Default Re: Microphones & associated gear for acoustic drums

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"Sweepable EQ?"
Man - I'm so far behind all this stuff I don't even know what that is - haha. I have never recorded my drums - other than using my digital Canon PowerShot on the Video setting a few times - I thought that sounded pretty good ...of course the camera has a sterio mic pickup built into it.......is that hitec or what - lol. I may sound like a feakin hillbilly (not that there's anything wrong with that) but I'm totally new at micing drums.....micing anything for that matter. I've only got back into drumming in the last three years after taking a 31 year break. I don't think the microphone had been invented yet when I played drum = long-tima-go.........
It's just that a friend - that happens to be a fantastic drummer who lives in another city - has said on a few occasions that he'd love to hear my drums all miced up.

I think I will buy one of those "box-sets" of mics from Long & McQuade for example and get a Yammi mixing board and see what happens. Or just get some mics I can use for everything....that might be the ticket. This is all just for fun around the home (drum room).

I do agree with you BO.....
"Being able to translate your acoustic sound into a tangible product for others to listen to is actually pretty cool."
No worries. Just get something and start having some fun. "Sweepable EQ" really just means that you can turn a knob and it sweeps through all the frequencies, and when you think you've found the frequency you want to affect, another knob will turn that frequency up or down (to take it out). It sounds more complicated than it is.

So what will you use to record? Sending a mix into your camcorder (if it has a mic in jack) sometimes overdrives the camera and doesn't sound very good. I would recommend one of those Zoom H2 recorders (It records to SD cards). Mine has been invaluable for doing mixdowns from my 16-track recorder to stereo. Good luck!
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Old 11-02-2010, 06:18 PM
Meat the beat Meat the beat is offline
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Default Re: Microphones & associated gear for acoustic drums

[quote=Bo Eder;759338]Yamaha makes undoubtedly some of the best professional mixers on the market. I love my original version of the O1v. The new one is the O1v96, which is even better.



Shure 57s on snare and toms, AKG D112 for kick drum...this combo gives you a pretty good sound that you can color as you wish with EQ and effects and such


Rode NT5s will work great for live sound,

Have to agree with these guys - a pair or even better a trio of NT5's for o/h's and hats will sound great. Pound for Pound probably the best value mic - and relatively undiscoved mic out there right now.
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Old 12-04-2010, 10:32 AM
louischris23 louischris23 is offline
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Default Re: Microphones & associated gear for acoustic drums

One microphone between every time will be for the full and that will close to top heads good impact1 or one microphone just above each tom-tom rim,aiming at top head and for the position or one microphone inside each tom and made with bottom hear removed and that is microphone mounted and directly on the drum.
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