DRUMMERWORLD OFFICIAL DISCUSSION FORUM   

Go Back   DRUMMERWORLD OFFICIAL DISCUSSION FORUM > Drum Gear > Heads and Sticks

Heads and Sticks Discuss Heads and Sticks

Reply
 
Thread Tools
  #1  
Old 06-22-2009, 01:19 PM
hurders's Avatar
hurders hurders is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Lincolnshire, England
Posts: 72
Default Kick Drum doesn't quite cut through

Played a pub gig last saturday, went well but I was a bit disappointed that I couldn't get my kick to cut through. Like usual, I used my kick mic (didn't use any other mics on the rest of the kit), now its only a budget Samson mic but it should do the job. I just placed it inside the kick layed on the pillow that I have in there.

We didn't have any time to really sond check because the karoke singer act before us over ran (don't you hate that!) but we quickly set the levels for my kick mic and you could hear it, it was definitely there. So we kicked off our 1st set and as the other band members piped up my kick was just completely lost in all the sound. Before the 2nd set we tried tweaking it a bit but we couldn't get much more out of it before it started distorting. We played the rest of the gig but I was left a little dissappointed that my kick didn't punch through as it should.

So what was the problem? I'm going to try putting the mic on a stand infront of the reso next time to try and get a bit more boomy resonance. I guess people will suggest taking the muffling out of my kick. I use 1 pillow layed long ways from reso to batter head, more at the batter end resting against the head. I find without the pillow, the feel from my pedal is horrible and I get so much vibration its just not nice so I really need the pillow in there to give me the nice responce and feel from my pedal. Head wise, I have a SK1 on the batter and a Ported Regulator Reso which should be a nice combo for a good sound and they do indeed sound nice, I'm just not getting the volume! As for the mic, yeah its cheap but it should be good enough for pub gigs etc. we were loud but not mega loud (bar staff said they could still talk to each other without having to shout when we were playing).

Any ideas/suggestions?
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 06-22-2009, 01:28 PM
bermuda's Avatar
bermuda bermuda is offline
Drummerworld Pro Drummer - Administrator
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 5,861
Default Re: Kick Drum doesn't quite cut through

Quote:
Originally Posted by hurders View Post
So we kicked off our 1st set and as the other band members piped up my kick was just completely lost in all the sound.
That's the key - 'lost' in all the sound. Tuning is often more important than volume, and it seems like your kick was lost in the range of the bass. If the bass is playing a lot of low end, tune your kick up so its range is above the bass. If the bass has a lot of pop & mids, tune the kick lower so both instruments can stay out of each other's way.

Bermuda
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 06-22-2009, 02:07 PM
drumhammerer drumhammerer is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: TX
Posts: 428
Default Re: Kick Drum doesn't quite cut through

Well, if you're gonna have a pillow in the kick anyway, just go for a regular unmuffled head. Pre-muffled heads with pillows inside tend to be rather quiet. I was playing for years with the pre-muffled heads, and while they sound great, I just couldn't ever hear the kick clearly, and this was without muffling too. I was also sick of all the vibrations throwing my strokes off too. So, I decided to try a simple clear ambassador on my 24X 17.5 kick with a remo falam slam/fluffy pillow, and damn! I could all of the sudden hear every single stroke I was playing, and I barely had to kick it that hard. Now, keep in mind this isn't the best kick sound in the world, because the un-muffled heads are much brighter and clickier, but you can simply hear them much better. Plus, I believe the deeper 24" kicks are a bit louder when you have a pillow inside, because with the increased area, the pillow won't take up as much space. I've tried this same combo with a shallower 22, and the volume wasn't as high, so you might wanna invest in a larger kick.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 06-22-2009, 02:09 PM
konaboy's Avatar
konaboy konaboy is offline
Pioneer Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Midwest, USA
Posts: 2,539
Default Re: Kick Drum doesn't quite cut through

I think the other part too is too much muffling. You really shouldn't need anything inside your kick with an SK1 it has built in dampening to take care of that. Have someone sit behind your kit and stand 15 ft away and have them hit your kick. Then take the pillow out and do the same thing.

As for the feel, it has to do with the tuning of the heads, just going to have to play with both to find that happy medium. Check out this video by bob gatzen. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ga8Q12mKYxI
__________________
"how are you living your Dash?"
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 06-22-2009, 03:01 PM
eddiehimself's Avatar
eddiehimself eddiehimself is offline
Platinum Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Room 409
Posts: 2,565
Default Re: Kick Drum doesn't quite cut through

Quote:
Originally Posted by bermuda View Post
That's the key - 'lost' in all the sound. Tuning is often more important than volume, and it seems like your kick was lost in the range of the bass. If the bass is playing a lot of low end, tune your kick up so its range is above the bass. If the bass has a lot of pop & mids, tune the kick lower so both instruments can stay out of each other's way.

Bermuda
I find that actually tuning your head lower down gives you more attack and less low end.
__________________
Underworked, underpaid and under-sexed...

EHs Music Facebook Page
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 06-22-2009, 03:32 PM
drumr0's Avatar
drumr0 drumr0 is offline
Silver Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Gordonsville, Tn.
Posts: 655
Default Re: Kick Drum doesn't quite cut through

A couple of other questions:

Have you played at this pub before?
Were you using their PA equipment or your bands PA?

If the kick was distorting the mains, it sounds like the PA wasn't set up to handle the bass drum adequately.

It sounds like y'all were in a hurry to get set up and didn't really have time to tweak the sound. But if you were using an unfamiliar PA that was too small to run drums through (I've been there before) that may have been your problem.

I use a CAD mic set which is about on the same level as the Sampson, and through a decent PA, can get it to sound any way that I want.
__________________
My Kit- DW--Paiste--Sabian--Gibraltar--http://www.drummerworld.com/forums/s...ad.php?t=30002
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 06-22-2009, 07:19 PM
bermuda's Avatar
bermuda bermuda is offline
Drummerworld Pro Drummer - Administrator
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 5,861
Default Re: Kick Drum doesn't quite cut through

Quote:
Originally Posted by eddiehimself View Post
I find that actually tuning your head lower down gives you more attack and less low end.
When it's tuned past actually being able to make a tone, yes that's true. I find that a lot of kicks in stores are tuned way down, and possess little more than a splattery click - no thump, no tone. I'm not sure why drummers seem to accept this sound, as it's rarely heard on recordings.

But my comment has more to do with hearing the kick, not necessarily its sound. And the way to hear any instrument is to make sure it's separated from other like-sounding instruments in the same range. On recordings, the separation may be achieved by panning one sound away from another conflicting sound, or by having one of the instruments play an octave up or down, or in the case of conflicting piano and guitar, the piano can play inverted chords(for example, CEG becomes CGE, with the E being in the next octave. This lets the piano be detected better with just that single note apart from its and the guitar's chord.)

But in a live situation in a smallish venue where panning left or right is pointless, it's really important to make sure that like sounds don't occur in the same frequencies, or they both become harder to hear. Then it becomes a battle of volume, and that can escalate to a point where there's no winner.

So when I suggested tuning the kick lower as a possible option, I didn't mean that it should just become a click. Then again, a click would stand out in the mix... it just wouldn't sound like a kick drum.

Bermuda
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 06-22-2009, 08:04 PM
Fiery's Avatar
Fiery Fiery is offline
Silver Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Serbia
Posts: 705
Default Re: Kick Drum doesn't quite cut through

Quote:
Originally Posted by bermuda View Post
When it's tuned past actually being able to make a tone, yes that's true. I find that a lot of kicks in stores are tuned way down, and possess little more than a splattery click - no thump, no tone. I'm not sure why drummers seem to accept this sound, as it's rarely heard on recordings.
It's the predominant sound of modern metal and -core recordings, and for that reason the majority of young drummers expect that kind of kick sound when trying out a drum set.
The reason behind such tuning is that it makes fast double kick patterns more clear than a thumpy or boomy sound.
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 06-22-2009, 09:25 PM
bermuda's Avatar
bermuda bermuda is offline
Drummerworld Pro Drummer - Administrator
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 5,861
Default Re: Kick Drum doesn't quite cut through

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fiery View Post
It's the predominant sound of modern metal and -core recordings, and for that reason the majority of young drummers expect that kind of kick sound when trying out a drum set.
The reason behind such tuning is that it makes fast double kick patterns more clear than a thumpy or boomy sound.
I know... I probably should have said "rarely heard on popular recordings." :)

Bermuda
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 06-23-2009, 04:46 PM
Fiery's Avatar
Fiery Fiery is offline
Silver Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Serbia
Posts: 705
Default Re: Kick Drum doesn't quite cut through

And it takes age and wisdom to really appreciate good pop drumming. Big stores have to adapt to the majority of customers unfortunately.
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 06-23-2009, 04:51 PM
eddiehimself's Avatar
eddiehimself eddiehimself is offline
Platinum Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Room 409
Posts: 2,565
Default Re: Kick Drum doesn't quite cut through

Quote:
Originally Posted by bermuda View Post
When it's tuned past actually being able to make a tone, yes that's true. I find that a lot of kicks in stores are tuned way down, and possess little more than a splattery click - no thump, no tone. I'm not sure why drummers seem to accept this sound, as it's rarely heard on recordings.
look mate, the guy asked how to make is kick more hearable, and that simply is the best way to get your kick heard, whether you like the tone or not. I personally love it.
__________________
Underworked, underpaid and under-sexed...

EHs Music Facebook Page
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 06-23-2009, 05:36 PM
bermuda's Avatar
bermuda bermuda is offline
Drummerworld Pro Drummer - Administrator
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 5,861
Default Re: Kick Drum doesn't quite cut through

Quote:
Originally Posted by eddiehimself View Post
look mate, the guy asked how to make is kick more hearable, and that simply is the best way to get your kick heard, whether you like the tone or not. I personally love it.
No prob. My advice is based on 35+ years as a working drummer, and others here are welcome to listen, or not.

Bermuda
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 06-23-2009, 07:35 PM
hurders's Avatar
hurders hurders is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Lincolnshire, England
Posts: 72
Default Re: Kick Drum doesn't quite cut through

Thanks for your advice guys, some really helpful tips. I think I'll prob give my tuning a tweak to try and get a bit more from my kick. FYI, my kick heads are tuned up to give a nice full tone, I also find that by tuning a bit higher you can often get a bit more boom (but perhaps sacrificing volume). I'm really not a fan of really low tuned kicks that just give out a papery clicky slap sound, thats definitely not for me, I want my kick to fill the room with a nice round boomy punch. So I'll probably try and tune it a little lower, but not too low!
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 06-23-2009, 10:59 PM
bermuda's Avatar
bermuda bermuda is offline
Drummerworld Pro Drummer - Administrator
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 5,861
Default Re: Kick Drum doesn't quite cut through

Quote:
Originally Posted by hurders View Post
I also find that by tuning a bit higher you can often get a bit more boom (but perhaps sacrificing volume).
That's the beautry of tuning outside of the bass guitar's range - the drum is easier to hear without having to be louder. You've heard recordings where an instrument is really easy to hear, yet it's not really loud... that's because it's not masked by another instrument playing the same kind of sound in the same range. When an instrument has its own little frequency space, you don't have to mess with the volume very much.

Bermuda
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 06-24-2009, 12:33 PM
drumhammerer drumhammerer is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: TX
Posts: 428
Default Re: Kick Drum doesn't quite cut through

Quote:
Originally Posted by hurders View Post
Thanks for your advice guys, some really helpful tips. I think I'll prob give my tuning a tweak to try and get a bit more from my kick. FYI, my kick heads are tuned up to give a nice full tone, I also find that by tuning a bit higher you can often get a bit more boom (but perhaps sacrificing volume). I'm really not a fan of really low tuned kicks that just give out a papery clicky slap sound, thats definitely not for me, I want my kick to fill the room with a nice round boomy punch. So I'll probably try and tune it a little lower, but not too low!
well, to get a round boomy tone, you're gonna have to lose the pillow. You will get more volume with the SK1 that way as well. With the pillow in there, it won't matter as much how you tune it..you're still gonna end up with mostly attack. The problem is, without the pillow you're gonna have that real bouncy feel. I guess you're gonna have to sacrifice sound or feel. Pulling the beater back also tends to draw a rounder/fuller tone, as opposed to burying the beater into the head. Plus you get better control with the increased bounce.

I'm assuming you have a 22 right? With a 24, I find that you can tune those higher and get increased volume because of the bigger diameter. With the 22's if you tune them too high, it seems like you do lose a little volume, because 22's can choke a little easier with higher tunings. I keep my 22 tuned much lower than my 24.

And listen to Bermuda. I think he's got more experience than most of us on here.
Reply With Quote
  #16  
Old 06-24-2009, 06:07 PM
mrchattr's Avatar
mrchattr mrchattr is offline
Gold Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Mechanicsburg, PA
Posts: 1,439
Default Re: Kick Drum doesn't quite cut through

Everything about the too much muffling, as well as Bermuda's advice, is excellent. But, also, dude said he laid his mic on the pillow at the bottom of his bass drum. I think that is the biggest problem here. The pillow will muffle the sound that the mic pics up, and the mic will probably bounce a good bit, so that it's not absorbing the sound easily. I know how much stuff moves around in a bass drum...there is no way the mic stayed put and got an even sound the whole night. Put the mic on a stand, where it should be, and you will notice a big difference. Do that with one source of muffling removed (though you will find that most pros don't use any muffling...just learn to tune the bass well), and you will notice a big difference.

Quote:
Originally Posted by eddiehimself View Post
look mate, the guy asked how to make is kick more hearable, and that simply is the best way to get your kick heard, whether you like the tone or not. I personally love it.
You realize you are arguing with the guy who has played on every Weird Al album/tour since he came out, right? I'm not saying that makes Bermuda an expert in all areas, and that you can't disagree with him...but dude knows what he's talking about.
__________________
Saluda Cymbals Endorser
Silver Fox Endorser

www.rossidrums.com
MySpace: rossidrums
Reply With Quote
  #17  
Old 06-24-2009, 06:16 PM
eddiehimself's Avatar
eddiehimself eddiehimself is offline
Platinum Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Room 409
Posts: 2,565
Default Re: Kick Drum doesn't quite cut through

Quote:
Originally Posted by mrchattr View Post
You realize you are arguing with the guy who has played on every Weird Al album/tour since he came out, right? I'm not saying that makes Bermuda an expert in all areas, and that you can't disagree with him...but dude knows what he's talking about.
I'm not disagreeing about tuning somewhere else to get the kick heard. All i'm saying is that not everybody regards the clicky sort of tone as a bad sound, i mean we're all different right? And that if you want a kick sound that cuts through that imo you can't beat that sort of sound. That's it. I'm not saying that's the only way you can get heard but honestly it is the best if you're going for hearing your kick drum above a loud band.

Now TS said he doesn't like that sort of thing. Fine well if you don't then do as bermuda suggests and change the note that it makes until it can be heard, and increase the volume of it by getting rid of the pillow.
__________________
Underworked, underpaid and under-sexed...

EHs Music Facebook Page
Reply With Quote
  #18  
Old 06-24-2009, 06:31 PM
bermuda's Avatar
bermuda bermuda is offline
Drummerworld Pro Drummer - Administrator
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 5,861
Default Re: Kick Drum doesn't quite cut through

Quote:
Originally Posted by mrchattr View Post
but dude knows what he's talking about.
Thanks, and I should point out that the Al gig is as much about sounds as parts, and I've had to achieve a LOT of sounds in 27 years of recording with him. But I still do more than my share of gigs with local bands, and have had good success getting my drums - miked or not - to 'speak' in various situations without having to beat my brains out. I've got a favorite 20" tuned moderately that cuts without being miked, and has no pillow or hole. In fact, there's almost no click at all. Yet it's very prominent, and the head choices and tuning are what make the difference.

Bermuda
Reply With Quote
  #19  
Old 06-25-2009, 03:17 AM
Cymbalrider's Avatar
Cymbalrider Cymbalrider is offline
Pioneer Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: North Carolina
Posts: 1,612
Default Re: Kick Drum doesn't quite cut through

Pillows eat sound they stop the airflow in the drum and absorb the sound. I'd suggest using felt strips or a rolled up towel taped inside the drum against the batter head. These dampen the head but not the drum. Then you can tune the reso higher for a shorter sustain. Delivers a nice full classic bass sound. Use wood beaters for harder attack and there you go. Tuning plays a big role in how you hear the sound, but you have to ensure you have a sound and not just a click first.
Reply With Quote
  #20  
Old 06-25-2009, 06:12 AM
Conner Conner is offline
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Iowa
Posts: 10
Default Re: Kick Drum doesn't quite cut through

better mic.
i think.
definatley use a mic stand.not just put it in there.
unless you get like a shure 91.
Reply With Quote
  #21  
Old 06-26-2009, 09:30 PM
Numberonefan Numberonefan is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Ottawa, Canada
Posts: 290
Default Re: Kick Drum doesn't quite cut through

How do you know what it sounded like? What you hear and what the audience hears is completely different.

You could hate what you hear on stage and be blown away by what comes through the PA.

The best post I have seen so far was the one ignored buy drumr0

Once you mic your kick you give it to me (the sound guy). More than anything else on that stage he will likely spend more time tweaking your kick and snare then everything else on stage combined.

Even if you asked for drums in your monitor (not the norm unless stage volume is ridiculous) you would still get a completely dry mix without gating, compression, eq and reverb.

Anyway all Iím saying is you can be very unhappy with what you hear and in-fact it can be great in the front of house system. We specialize in making 400 dollar kids sound like 4,000 kits! LOL It just takes a lot more work with the shitty kit.
Reply With Quote
  #22  
Old 06-27-2009, 08:02 AM
caddywumpus's Avatar
caddywumpus caddywumpus is offline
Platinum Member
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Portland, OR USA
Posts: 5,589
Default Re: Kick Drum doesn't quite cut through

SIDENOTE: Could you imagine "When the Levee Breaks" with a clicky bass drum sound?
__________________
Be vewwy quiet, I'm hunting Lawwy

My kit: http://drummerworld.com/forums/showthread.php?t=44195
Reply With Quote
  #23  
Old 06-28-2009, 03:06 PM
Mathew 7:21's Avatar
Mathew 7:21 Mathew 7:21 is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: U.S.A
Posts: 133
Default Re: Kick Drum doesn't quite cut through

I never understood people that put pillows and such inside there drum, along time ago yes but not now with the pre-muffled drum heads. I still love the Remo ps3 or the emad. It lets your drum be a drum ,pillows kill the drum. Anyway bro. try a Danmar disk pad with a felt beater.
__________________
Tama Starclassic B/B 20x22, 9x12, 12x14, 14x16
Reply With Quote
  #24  
Old 06-28-2009, 03:33 PM
eddiehimself's Avatar
eddiehimself eddiehimself is offline
Platinum Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Room 409
Posts: 2,565
Default Re: Kick Drum doesn't quite cut through

Quote:
Originally Posted by caddywumpus View Post
SIDENOTE: Could you imagine "When the Levee Breaks" with a clicky bass drum sound?
Look all i said is that it cuts through well! No need to start a big debate over the pros and cons of a clicky bass drum sound mate! Look i think you've got completely the wrong end of what i was trying to say. Of course there are a lot of times when it just doesn't work, that "just the two of us" song for example, the bass drum just sounds completely stupid. But that is a quiet song and in terms of musical space you could whack any bass drum sound there is practically and you'd still be able to hear it. Now i don't know what sort of music this bloke plays but if it's loud enough to drown out the kick drum then it must be worth suggesting the dreaded "click" surley?
__________________
Underworked, underpaid and under-sexed...

EHs Music Facebook Page
Reply With Quote
  #25  
Old 06-28-2009, 03:43 PM
drumr0's Avatar
drumr0 drumr0 is offline
Silver Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Gordonsville, Tn.
Posts: 655
Default Re: Kick Drum doesn't quite cut through

Quote:
Originally Posted by Numberonefan View Post
The best post I have seen so far was the one ignored buy drumr0
Thanks for the Kudos! The way I read the original post, it just seemed like that this was a mix problem/PA problem more than anything. He's gotten good sound in the past with the same tuning (I assume).

If hurders could tell us a little more about the venue and sound equipment, I think it would help.
__________________
My Kit- DW--Paiste--Sabian--Gibraltar--http://www.drummerworld.com/forums/s...ad.php?t=30002
Reply With Quote
  #26  
Old 06-29-2009, 08:42 AM
caddywumpus's Avatar
caddywumpus caddywumpus is offline
Platinum Member
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Portland, OR USA
Posts: 5,589
Default Re: Kick Drum doesn't quite cut through

Quote:
Originally Posted by eddiehimself View Post
Look all i said is that it cuts through well! No need to start a big debate over the pros and cons of a clicky bass drum sound mate! Look i think you've got completely the wrong end of what i was trying to say.
Whoa! Easy there, tiger! I wasn't starting any kind of debate. I just pictured in my mind what "When the Levee Breaks" would sound like with a clicky bass drum sound, had a little chuckle to myself, and thought I'd pass that ridiculous sonic image along for a laugh. No debate or disrespect intended, mate...
__________________
Be vewwy quiet, I'm hunting Lawwy

My kit: http://drummerworld.com/forums/showthread.php?t=44195
Reply With Quote
  #27  
Old 06-29-2009, 11:37 AM
hurders's Avatar
hurders hurders is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Lincolnshire, England
Posts: 72
Default Re: Kick Drum doesn't quite cut through

Hey guys, thanks again for the tips.

For the guy that asked if knew how it sounded out front? Yeah I got some feedback from my bro in the audience who said the kick wasn't cutting through. There was also another guy who plays drums in the audience who also commented on the lack of kick.

For the people saying get rid of the pillow/muffling etc. yeah, I hear what you're saying but when I've tried that in the past the feel and vibrations I get through my pedal are just horrible so I feel I need something in there against the batter head (the single pillow I have in my kick is mostly up against the batter) just take away the vibrations from the pedal and give a nice solid feel. I am definitely going experiment with a bit less muffling though, probably a towel.

Our sound equipment? Well, I'm not really too clued up on that, one of out guitarists sorts and controls all that. The PA is nothing too fancy but I'm sure its good/powerful enough to blast out my kick better than it did. At the gig in question, the venue was your typical pub/bar, quite a long room, plenty of space. I just had my kick miced, the rest of the kit cut through quite well without any mics.

We've got a gig coming up this sat, its outside and we're playing on a trailer so i'll most likely go with a couple of overheads as well as the kick mic. I'm going to have a bit of a play with tuning my kick and experiment with less muffling on sat morning to see if I can get some more boom from it.
Reply With Quote
  #28  
Old 06-29-2009, 05:43 PM
Numberonefan Numberonefan is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Ottawa, Canada
Posts: 290
Default Re: Kick Drum doesn't quite cut through

50 to 100hz are the frequencies where all the thump is from. Your kick and the low string on the bass are the only instruments down there. Therefore you either need to ensure you always have a good sound man with an adequate PA or make it your business to be clued up on that.

It used to chap my ass where we would pull into a bar and the house PA was crap. My son (the drummer) is up there beating away killing himself and if I was not watching his sticks moving I would have thought he was not playing!

As a result I have spent the last three or four years learning as much as I can and building a PA rig to ensure he is heard loud and clear!
Your guitar player will focus on his rig on vocal and his guitar. Both are in similar frequencies and relative to bass frequencies easy to get up and sounding good.
The ratio of the power it takes to amplify kick frequencies compared to vocals and guitar frequencies is about 3 to 1 if not moreÖ easily more!
I donít have unlimited funds so Iím down low on this scale but I have about 3,600 watts in my PA. 2.600 watts is devoted to 50 to 100hz and a mere 1,000 watts is dedicated to 100hz to 20,000Khz.
This PA I run is only capable of covering 200 to 250 people. Anymore more people, larger room or outdoors and all bets are off. The kick just drops off exponentially. At this point I have to rent more front of house gear to get the job done.

As for cutÖ I assume you care how it sounds or you would not be asking about it hereÖ next time your setting up for a show get a friend to sit in your seat and just kick. Go out to the board find the kick channel look for a control in the 3K to 5K ish area and add about 5 or 6 db at that frequency. I canít be more specific than that as every room and PA is slightly different. If the board does not have sweepable controls to add gain there plug your kick into an outboard EQ and add in that frequency and pull some 250 to 500hz out. Buy hearing it for yourself you will appreciate how much it can be improved or made worse for that matter with just EQ.

When I get home tonight Iíll append this with some video examples of my kids playing with good PAís and bad ones. Similarly with a mic on the kick and a few overheads vs every drum micíed along with overheads.
This should help to make my point and hopefully get a few guys more interested in how they sound to the crowd. I may not be a drummer myself but I sure care how you all sound!
Reply With Quote
  #29  
Old 06-29-2009, 07:22 PM
bermuda's Avatar
bermuda bermuda is offline
Drummerworld Pro Drummer - Administrator
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 5,861
Default Re: Kick Drum doesn't quite cut through

Quote:
Originally Posted by Numberonefan View Post
50 to 100hz are the frequencies where all the thump is from. Your kick and the low string on the bass are the only instruments down there.
The thump can exist nicely above that range, as do bass notes, and you're right that they exist in the same space. And that's where the problem of one covering up the other exists. As bass notes are typically more legato, they win.

What I said very early in this thread is that when the bass is that low, the kick needs to be tuned (or at least EQd) out of that low-end range so it can be detected. It's not really a volume issue, as that's an endless battle that no instrument competing with another can win.

If the bass doesn't have a lot of lows (some bass players perefer more mids and attack) then the kick can have as much thump as the p.a. allows, and it will be heard in that way.

Bermuda
Reply With Quote
  #30  
Old 07-01-2009, 12:39 PM
keep it simple's Avatar
keep it simple keep it simple is offline
Platinum Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Herefordshire, UK.
Posts: 16,405
Default Re: Kick Drum doesn't quite cut through

Hi all,

I've just registered to this site. Just got back into playing after a 15 year lay off and I'm rusty as hell. Played sessions for years then gave up as the business got to me. Anyhow, I've always played a 20" kick in a rock environment and never had a problem with definition or depth, with or without PA. It sounds like a little cannon! I can't endorse the importance of tuning enough. Especially critical on a 20" kick. I use a small size 6 piece Spaun custom maple kit. Emad2 on the batter tuned just above lowest fundamental pitch. I keep the dampening ring in place for PA use and remove it for acoustic work. Nothing inside the drum. 4" offset mic hole in the reso tuned about half a turn all round above the lowest fundamental pitch. My friend uses the same tuning / head choice principal on his 24" kick and it sounds great. On the subject of PA's, my present band uses a little 1.4kw DB Technologies rig with only 800w of sub through 12" speakers. We can easily get a full & kickass sound from this in gigs up to 250 people. Only the kick is mic'd. D112 on a stand positioned inside the kick about mid drum. On a stand is essential. Hope this helps someone.
Reply With Quote
  #31  
Old 07-01-2009, 01:48 PM
rmandelbaum's Avatar
rmandelbaum rmandelbaum is offline
Platinum Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Austin, TX USA
Posts: 2,043
Default Re: Kick Drum doesn't quite cut through

I was using a cheap Superlux mic for a long time. About 2 weeks ago during sound check the sound guy came up to me and said "the kick sounds week and distorted, let me try my mic" so he popped a Shure Beta 52 on it. OMG! I was shocked at the difference.I went out a bought one before our next gig.

Also if the band is not hearing it that is stage mix, are you putting any kick in the monitors, or are you even running monitors?


You are getting great advice from knowledgeable people above but I have to say I will never use a cheap bass drum mic again. If you can find a way to try a higher quality mic, I personally would give that a try.
__________________
DW Collectors
Vintage Superstars
Roland TD-20
Misc. Snares
My Web Site
Reply With Quote
  #32  
Old 07-01-2009, 02:16 PM
keep it simple's Avatar
keep it simple keep it simple is offline
Platinum Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Herefordshire, UK.
Posts: 16,405
Default Re: Kick Drum doesn't quite cut through

Good advise on the mic. I couldn't agree more. The Beta is a great mic & not too expensive. Equally, the AKG D112 I use you can pick up for the price of a couple of good quality kick drum heads. There's better than the D112 around in specific applications but it's a great all rounder and bomb proof. No EQ needed for live work either. You'll probably want to use something a bit more natural such as a high quality condenser for recording.
Reply With Quote
  #33  
Old 07-01-2009, 02:53 PM
hurders's Avatar
hurders hurders is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Lincolnshire, England
Posts: 72
Default Re: Kick Drum doesn't quite cut through

More good advice guys, thanks,

Regarding monitors, no we don't tend to play with them but as I said in an earlier post, it wasn't just the kick not coming thorugh on stage, I had people in the audience who said it was lacking too.

Yeah, ideally I probably need a better mic but at the moment I'm going to try and make do. We are only really playing pub gigs at the moment so I think with better tuning and mic placement I should get an acceptable amount out my cheapy kick mic. If we start to play some bigger venues then I'll probably consider getting something a bit better
Reply With Quote
  #34  
Old 07-04-2009, 02:03 PM
drumhammerer drumhammerer is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: TX
Posts: 428
Default Re: Kick Drum doesn't quite cut through

Quote:
Originally Posted by bermuda View Post
The thump can exist nicely above that range, as do bass notes, and you're right that they exist in the same space. And that's where the problem of one covering up the other exists. As bass notes are typically more legato, they win.

What I said very early in this thread is that when the bass is that low, the kick needs to be tuned (or at least EQd) out of that low-end range so it can be detected. It's not really a volume issue, as that's an endless battle that no instrument competing with another can win.

If the bass doesn't have a lot of lows (some bass players perefer more mids and attack) then the kick can have as much thump as the p.a. allows, and it will be heard in that way.

Bermuda
This really does make sense. I've been in certain clubs to where when the drummer was doing the kick sound check, it sounded huge and would almost knock you over. Yet, when the rest of the band would come in, you couldn't really hear the kick any more. The smaller/longer clubs tend to have this problem. With all the other instruments bouncing around off the walls, and being amplified at the same time, it can be a struggle to get a simple acoustic instrument heard; especially one in the lower frequency range.

BTW, I had a friend that used the superkick with a pillow inside, and I could never hear his kick, no matter what the club or soundsystem. Maybe just go with a PS3, and tape a rolled up towel to the batter side. You'll retain volume and tone that way, and the towel will cut down on the vibrations.
Reply With Quote
  #35  
Old 07-05-2009, 10:23 AM
mrchattr's Avatar
mrchattr mrchattr is offline
Gold Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Mechanicsburg, PA
Posts: 1,439
Default Re: Kick Drum doesn't quite cut through

Quote:
Originally Posted by hurders View Post
More good advice guys, thanks,

Regarding monitors, no we don't tend to play with them but as I said in an earlier post, it wasn't just the kick not coming thorugh on stage, I had people in the audience who said it was lacking too.

Yeah, ideally I probably need a better mic but at the moment I'm going to try and make do. We are only really playing pub gigs at the moment so I think with better tuning and mic placement I should get an acceptable amount out my cheapy kick mic. If we start to play some bigger venues then I'll probably consider getting something a bit better
I had an experience tonight in Baltimore that made me think of this thread. We were playing a pretty big club, headlining a show that had a house kit. The house kit was a 24" bass drum, tuned low, ported, with a top of the line mic being used. I usually use an un-ported 20" bass drum with a medium-priced mic, so I expected serious boom. I got up there, and could barely hear the darn thing. I asked them to send it through my monitors (and it was an incredible monitor system...I actually had a sub and a regular speaker), and I still couldn't hear it well. The people in my band, who usually don't need my bass in their monitors at all and can hear it fine, were asking for more and more. After the show, a lot of fans said that we sounded great except that you could barely hear the bass drum. In talking to the soundguy, I found out he had it turned up to where it would feedback if it went higher.

The drum had a pillow and two towels in it, as well as a muffled batter head.

Oh, and if your pedal is vibrating when you hit the bass drum unmuffled, there is something wrong with the pedal, or how it is set up.
__________________
Saluda Cymbals Endorser
Silver Fox Endorser

www.rossidrums.com
MySpace: rossidrums
Reply With Quote
  #36  
Old 07-06-2009, 01:37 PM
hurders's Avatar
hurders hurders is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Lincolnshire, England
Posts: 72
Default Re: Kick Drum doesn't quite cut through

Well the gig we did saturday night was much better. Before the gig I re-tuned my kick (probably ended up with the heads tuned near enough back where they were originally but made me feel better to do it anyway!), I also adjusted the pillow (it is only a small flat pillow) so it was laying horizontally across the floor of the drum with just a little touching the bottom of the batter (I usually have it long ways with a good amount of it reared up against the batter head). Also, I put the kick mic on a mini-boom stand, not quite in the port hole, facing slightly away from the beater to pick up more from the reso head.

Anyway with those changes I got a much rounder, fuller and powerful sound from my kick that definitely cut through the mix.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mrchattr View Post
Oh, and if your pedal is vibrating when you hit the bass drum unmuffled, there is something wrong with the pedal, or how it is set up.
Maybe I exageratted a little before when I talked about the vibrations but there is definitely a different feel from the pedal when you play a kick with a pillow resting against the inside of the batter head to 1 that's completely unmuffled. I tend to bury the beater a little so with an unmuffled kick I can feel the batter head vibrating through the pedal more than if its muffled as the head is resonating for longer. But, playing with less muffling certainly wasn't as bad as I expected and I'm definitely going to swap the pillow for a towel just resting against the batter head for the next gig.

All in all, it was a big improvement.
Reply With Quote
  #37  
Old 07-06-2009, 08:59 PM
mrchattr's Avatar
mrchattr mrchattr is offline
Gold Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Mechanicsburg, PA
Posts: 1,439
Default Re: Kick Drum doesn't quite cut through

Quote:
Originally Posted by hurders View Post
Well the gig we did saturday night was much better. Before the gig I re-tuned my kick (probably ended up with the heads tuned near enough back where they were originally but made me feel better to do it anyway!), I also adjusted the pillow (it is only a small flat pillow) so it was laying horizontally across the floor of the drum with just a little touching the bottom of the batter (I usually have it long ways with a good amount of it reared up against the batter head). Also, I put the kick mic on a mini-boom stand, not quite in the port hole, facing slightly away from the beater to pick up more from the reso head.

Anyway with those changes I got a much rounder, fuller and powerful sound from my kick that definitely cut through the mix.



Maybe I exageratted a little before when I talked about the vibrations but there is definitely a different feel from the pedal when you play a kick with a pillow resting against the inside of the batter head to 1 that's completely unmuffled. I tend to bury the beater a little so with an unmuffled kick I can feel the batter head vibrating through the pedal more than if its muffled as the head is resonating for longer. But, playing with less muffling certainly wasn't as bad as I expected and I'm definitely going to swap the pillow for a towel just resting against the batter head for the next gig.

All in all, it was a big improvement.
Glad everything worked out well for you! Yeah, I was shocked at how little sound came from the bass drum I mentioned in my last past. It's an amazing difference.
__________________
Saluda Cymbals Endorser
Silver Fox Endorser

www.rossidrums.com
MySpace: rossidrums
Reply With Quote
  #38  
Old 07-07-2009, 06:22 PM
genericdrummingusername's Avatar
genericdrummingusername genericdrummingusername is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Post-Industrial Hick wasteland.
Posts: 413
Default Re: Kick Drum doesn't quite cut through

I'm going to start a 'We like bass drum click" group now.


Maybe.
__________________
I also play Bass.
Reply With Quote
  #39  
Old 07-07-2009, 07:19 PM
eddiehimself's Avatar
eddiehimself eddiehimself is offline
Platinum Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Room 409
Posts: 2,565
Default Re: Kick Drum doesn't quite cut through

Quote:
Originally Posted by genericdrummingusername View Post
I'm going to start a 'We like bass drum click" group now.


Maybe.
well i'm certainly in if you do lol.
__________________
Underworked, underpaid and under-sexed...

EHs Music Facebook Page
Reply With Quote
  #40  
Old 07-07-2009, 07:37 PM
eddiehimself's Avatar
eddiehimself eddiehimself is offline
Platinum Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Room 409
Posts: 2,565
Default Re: Kick Drum doesn't quite cut through

Quote:
Originally Posted by caddywumpus View Post
Whoa! Easy there, tiger! I wasn't starting any kind of debate. I just pictured in my mind what "When the Levee Breaks" would sound like with a clicky bass drum sound, had a little chuckle to myself, and thought I'd pass that ridiculous sonic image along for a laugh. No debate or disrespect intended, mate...
okay fair enough haha yeah that is pretty silly. On the same token though, imagine most fast paced double kick patterns you hear on almost any metal song with a john bohnam kick drum tone. Imo it would be just as ridiculous. It's all about context.
__________________
Underworked, underpaid and under-sexed...

EHs Music Facebook Page
Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are Off
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off




All times are GMT +2. The time now is 07:35 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.0
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Bernhard Castiglioni's DRUMMERWORLD.com