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  #1  
Old 01-11-2011, 06:55 AM
KrazyGrenade KrazyGrenade is offline
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Default Recording equipment

So I am looking into getting into recording my drums... Been reading up on posts here in these forums... doing some research on wikipedia. I am still fairly clueless but I have a better idea of the required hardware now. I was wondering if this seems like a good deal to you here? http://chico.craigslist.org/msg/2150862818.html

If I understand correctly I would need only microphones to start recording if i purchased this. I dont need extended answers, I dont want to waste all of your time because I am only considering this and I still need to do some more research.

Bottom line: Is this a decent deal, and will it move me towards my goal of being able to record my drums?


Edited from here down:

So I figured I would add to this post as instead of creating a brand new one, but you can take this as a different post.

I have been doing some research on mics tonight and it seems like they are relatively expensive for someone looking from the outside in. I assumed "microphones... 200 bucks for everything I need" and it looks like I was pretty clearly wrong. I have always been the type of person who prefers to wait to buy something quality as opposed to buying something immediately and needing to replace it in the future. That said, I will list what my wants/needs are and let you guys comment on what you think.

I have a fusion drum kit (7 piece PDP Pacific by DW X7). Ideally it would be nice to have my microphones cleanly pick up the sounds from that mass array of toms.
I am still beginner - intermediate in my drumming after a year and a half. I will not be doing any recording for anything other than my own pleasure at this point in time. I will be doing covers here and there (currently practicing the song "hash pipe" by Weezer) and I am not in a band. Therefore getting basic equipment (as opposed to professional) to just ease me into the concept of recording is definitely something I am open to.
I have a pretty powerful desktop running 64 bit windows 7. A quad 2.4 ghz processor with 4 gb of ram and plenty of hard drive space.
I already have Pro Tools as recording software just because I have heard that it is an industry standard, I am totally open to any suggestions on what would be good for me though, I am completely new to recording although I am very good with computers and totally capable of teaching myself how to use software.
I would love to get into this recording money by spending as little as possible, but as I mentioned above quality and longevity in my equipment is more important than money. Thats not to say I am unwilling to replace cheap equipment if it helps me get my head around recording easier and cheaper. I just want to get started doing this with the bare minimum of equipment to cut down on costs.
I definitely want my audio interface/mixer to record everything on separate channels

I think that is it on needs/wants haha. Moving on to the actual equipment that I want suggestions on.

So my understanding is that to record I will need:

1 kick mic
1 snare mic
2 overhead mics
Recording software and the computer of course
an audio interface OR a mixer

Correct me if I need more or less than what I mentioned above. That being said this is the actual equipment that I gathered to be the best value. ( :P Tell me if there are cheaper options because wow this is expensive stuff!!!!)

Audix D6 Kick Mic 200$ - http://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/D6
Audix i5 snare mic 100$ - http://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/i5 Also I figure if I am paying this much for microphones it would be awesome to get some extra use out of them. If I read right, this can also be used to record other instruments?
Studio Projects C4 400$ - http://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/C4mic
Tascam US1641 300$ - http://www.amazon.com/Tascam-US1641-...pr_product_top


The Audio interface is the one I am least confident about being actually a good deal. so feel free to beat this one down and recommend a better and or cheaper one

Also with the microphones, I was looking for cheaper alternatives and it doesn't seem like they get much cheaper than what I have posted (not to mention these were recommended on these forums for being great quality as well) Is this actually the case? or are there cheaper ones worth buying for someone with 0 experience?

Realistically I am going to be keeping an eye on craigslist for alternatives to this equipment, and I will also have an eye on Ebay so that I can piece it all together over a couple of months at the best prices I can find.

Anyways. I think that sums it up. If I left anything out or you need any more information just post and I will do my best to give you a quick answer. Sorry for the extended post, but I want to be as knowledgable as possible so that it justifies the time you guys spend reading it and recommending stuff. All suggestions appreciated, thanks guys!

Last edited by KrazyGrenade; 01-11-2011 at 07:50 AM.
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Old 01-11-2011, 07:42 AM
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Bo Eder Bo Eder is offline
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Default Re: Recording equipment

I would consider the Zoom R16 first. New it's about $390 and all you'd have to do is add microphones. And it's all in one box. You can mix down your tracks to anything stereo, like your computer, or a CD burner, or an iPod.

Here's an thread I started explaining how I do things with the Zoom: http://drummerworld.com/forums/showthread.php?t=69369
Sorry to post it again everybody, but I think it might help.
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Old 01-11-2011, 07:58 AM
KrazyGrenade KrazyGrenade is offline
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Default Re: Recording equipment

Wow that zoom r16 looks awesome. I read your post on it, gotta do some more reading so that I understand it even better but it sounds wonderful! haha
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Old 01-11-2011, 08:27 AM
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Default Re: Recording equipment

Yeah, your bottleneck will be the interface for the microphones. I had that Tascam and liked it, however, since you have ProTools, I believe ProTools only works with certain audio interfaces, so you'll have to check with them see what interfaces are compatible with your particular version of ProTools. I don't think an 8-channel interface for ProTools will be under $300.

ProTools itself is very cool. I know alot of people that use it and love it. But it may be over your head for your needs. Doesn't Windows have their own versions of simple programs like Apple's GarageBand or something? People like Lyle Ritz have made entire albums with just GarageBand and the results are impressive. And that guy was an LA studio legend back in the '50s and the 60s as a session bassist. I think the simpler, the better. The idea is to record your playing, not create a whole 'nother career for yourself, right?

I think it's wise you're not thinking about a mic for everything. I've gotten great sounds from a bass drum mic and a single overhead mic too. In fact, alot of Led Zeppelin's stuff was recording with, at most, only three mics on the drums. I've said it before: I'm all for dedicated drum mics, but then you're stuck with just drum mics. I'm a generalist and can use all my mics on many things. I'm kinda' wedded to simple mics like Shure SM57's and 58's - industry workhorses - I can never seem to have a enough of those. I've rounded out my collection with a semi nice side-address vocal condenser and three pencil condensers that I use as overheads.

I think you should look at what your end product will be, and then tailor your gear to help you get there as quickly and as easy as you can. Otherwise, you won't do it. I'm that way - playing drums is what I want to concentrate on. That's why I do the Zoom thing instead - much more intuitive for me, anyway.
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Old 01-11-2011, 08:29 AM
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Default Re: Recording equipment

Quote:
Originally Posted by KrazyGrenade View Post
Wow that zoom r16 looks awesome. I read your post on it, gotta do some more reading so that I understand it even better but it sounds wonderful! haha

Better yet - listen to what I've posted on YouTube. As mediocre as my playing and singing are, the audio is astounding. People would have killed to be able to do that with a cheap cassette portastudio back in the early '80s! For under $400 even!
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Old 01-11-2011, 08:34 AM
KrazyGrenade KrazyGrenade is offline
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Default Re: Recording equipment

Right now I am definitely leaning towards the simplicity of the Zoom R16. I was just throwing the Tascam out there because I didn't have any other choices picks or ideas haha. So if I get the Zoom R16 I will need mics still. What do you think of the Audix D6? Do you suggest any others? And I could just leave out the snare mic for now and stick with overheads. What do you think of the C4's, or what other ones would you recommend? The C4's come in pairs I think, since you said its possible to get good recording with just one overhead are there any that you particularly like?

I have listened to your youtube videos. They sound great. I have been addicted to drum covers over the last couple of days and its definitely a breath of fresh air when you hear the drums sounding like they do when your actually in the room. A lot of other videos just have such a muffled sound.
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Old 01-11-2011, 08:50 AM
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Default Re: Recording equipment

Quote:
Originally Posted by KrazyGrenade View Post
Right now I am definitely leaning towards the simplicity of the Zoom R16. I was just throwing the Tascam out there because I didn't have any other choices picks or ideas haha. So if I get the Zoom R16 I will need mics still. What do you think of the Audix D6? Do you suggest any others? And I could just leave out the snare mic for now and stick with overheads. What do you think of the C4's, or what other ones would you recommend? The C4's come in pairs I think, since you said its possible to get good recording with just one overhead are there any that you particularly like?

I have listened to your youtube videos. They sound great. I have been addicted to drum covers over the last couple of days and its definitely a breath of fresh air when you hear the drums sounding like they do when your actually in the room. A lot of other videos just have such a muffled sound.
Thanks for listening!

I had a D6 long ago and it was great. I brought it over to a friend's bigger studio and we found it actually sounds best as a floor tom mic! This is, of course, when it was in the same room as the venerable Electro-Voice RE30 on the bass drum (at about $400).
The Studio Projects C4's are nice. But remember, if you're going to use the Zoom R16 (or R24), it might be overkill for what you're doing. I would suggest the cheaper Crown CM700 - I've used those here at Disneyland and got great results (we tend to use companies that have been doing microphones for a long time: Shure, Sennheiser, AKG, EV, Crown, Neumann, you get the idea).

Another thing to keep in mind with the Zoom - you're limited to only TWO phantom powered inputs at a time (channels 5&6 or 13&14) - so when you expand, you'll only be able to use one overhead, and the other on the hi-hat. Everything else has to be a dynamic mic that requires no external power - unless you want to buy external phantom power supplies (I did this so I can use at least 3 condensers). When I get great recording s with just two mics, I either used the D4 or a Shure SM58 on the kick, with a single AKG SE300 pencil overhead. Very clear mic, that AKG!
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Old 01-11-2011, 08:58 AM
KrazyGrenade KrazyGrenade is offline
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Default Re: Recording equipment

So if I can only use two mics that require power then I would be looking at one bass drum mic, and one overhead right? If that is the case I could use the CM700/SE300 for my overhead and the D4/SM58 on the kick? That looks like a much nicer price for essentially the same results

What are the prices like for external phantom power supplies, or what options are available for dynamic mics? In case I do decide that I want more in the future.
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Old 01-11-2011, 09:09 AM
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Default Re: Recording equipment

Nady makes a pretty inexpensive Phantom Power supply, the SMPS-1X for about $20. It's pretty noiseless. Unfortunately, this is the only weird thing with the Zoom, that you can only power two condensers at one time, but it's an easy fix, though. Still cheaper than buying a mixing console, and a recorder (I had a Yamaha O1v console once with a Tascam DA88 recorder - all digital for the price of $8000 before mics and TAPE!).

Yes, you could use your D4 and whatever condenser you like at the same time. The results would be pretty good with just those two. And you can use all 8-channels with dynamic mics if you want too. They need no external power at all. Don't forget half-decent mic cables, though. Avoid that Monster Cable crap. Go for Mogami or Canare mic cables. I'm so good with a soldering iron I tend to make my own; I'll go out and get some Neutrik or Switchcraft XLR connectors and nice heavy bulk mic cabling and make my own lengths. And for your overhead - spend at least $60 on the boom mic stand. You don't want that thing falling down on you, or falling over all by itself!
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Old 01-11-2011, 09:20 AM
KrazyGrenade KrazyGrenade is offline
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Default Re: Recording equipment

what do you think about AKG C 1000 S as the condenser? and let me make sure we are on the same lingo. a condenser is an overhead mic?
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Old 01-11-2011, 10:53 AM
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Default Re: Recording equipment

Quote:
Originally Posted by KrazyGrenade View Post
what do you think about AKG C 1000 S as the condenser? and let me make sure we are on the same lingo. a condenser is an overhead mic?
Those are cool too. And no, a condenser is not just an overhead mic. A condenser is any microphone that needs power for it to work. Usually this is between 9V and 48V, hence the phrase you see alot: 48V phantom power. Alot of your big studio microphones are condensers. The extra power makes them more sensitive and for some reason my voice sounds better when sung into my big condenser mic (a cheap CAD GXL 2400 or the Studio Projects C1). Yet, Bonnie Raitt sounds great when using the Electro-Voice RE20 (yes, the bass drum mic - but it's also used alot for voice in radio stations, it really enhances the bass).

When you get into condenser mics, or mics in general, you have to remember too that what you plug it into is important. A nice Neumann U87 plugged into the Zoom will produce good results, but usually that Neumann will be plugged into some extremely expensive mic pre-amp and going through a million dollar console on its way to whatever recorder the studio uses. I've taken the lowly Shure SM57 and plugged it into a $2600 Avalon mic preamp and that mic sounded absolutely more awesome than I've ever heard it!

So, when you get into recording, if you're gonna go big - you should go big on everything: mics, console, recorder if you want to record the next big audiophile CD. It can become a real money pit - it'll never end once you start down that path. That's why it's important to know what you want your final outcome to be - it'll keep your budget hopefully lower!
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