Critiques wanted on tuning and sound

Title pretty much says it all. The kick is way overdriven because I rearranged some stuff, I know my technique and rhythm is terrible in this recording. I have no idea how to tune my kit, looking for pointers on how to make it sound as professional as possible with what I have. For context, there's an sm58 each on the snare and the kick, and two mxl 990 overheads


Senior Member

Sorry about that, not sure why it didnt make it into the op
No Offense, (and yes, im lazy) but..[in this day in age]... seems like a lot of work to view a video..?..
and when I did "log in" , I still needed to request permission to view. So, that said, I still have not viewed said video.

Wierd, I'll see what's going on. It's an mp3 sound file, no video. Not sure why it's not letting you into it. I'll see if I can find a better way. Sorry for the hassle!
So I've been out of the loop for a while, and a few things have changed. Here's a new track I uploaded to soundcloud so there's no chance for the hassle of before. This is new skins and the best mic setup I can come up with with two mxl 990's for overheads and two sm58's (snare and kick). I also have an mxl 991 and another shotgun condenser mic that I can't think of the name of available, just short on stands and will have to get creative. I can upload the raw drum track at some point, just not in the next week because Ill be in hawaii!!


Platinum Member
There's a lot to unpack in a seemingly simple question.

If you want help on the drum sound and tuning a drums-only track is going to be most helpful. The drums are so low in the mix and it's mostly cymbals that I can hear, so it's hard to give pointers on tuning before pointers on mixing.

The hi hat/ride cymbal rhythm, while cool, doesn't fit nicely with what the guitar is playing. Since keeping that rhythm steady seems to be a technical issue anyway, I'd suggest playing something else as the main groove, and maybe slip in a few of those three against two patterns sparingly.


Silver Member
You're trying to do too much.

Your playing in the first 50 seconds of "End of a Beginning" sounds fine, it's a little shaky with the tempo at times but overall it sounds decent. After that when the guitar part changes it just sounds like noise, the hihat or whatever you're playing isn't matching with the guitar part, then the part you play with the bell is out of time and sounds bad.

Practice to a click. Get solid beats down and play through the songs with just the beats and then when you can do that well start adding in transitions and accents. Take the cymbals and toms away if you have too and get a solid foundation with just hihat, bass drum and snare.


Platinum Member
OP is playing quarter note triplets btw, and they're asking about recording advice.
Op: Do you have a drum iso track?

Here are the quarter note triplets on the left to put the whole thing into perspective.


Platinum Member
OP didn't want playing advice he wanted sound/tuning advice.

First off, from what I can hear of the toms they didn't sound horrible, but I'd suggest doing a TON of research on mixing / micing drums. It takes years to become really good at it, and can become expensive too if you go down the rabbit hole. Your going to be better off micing the toms, but starting off with 2 large diaphragm overheads and moving them around while testing would be a good place to start, And use a kick mic. I can get killer sounds with 3 mics if I want a very natural sound. If i want a more polished produced sound I mic every drum.

Your overheads may be too close to the kit, picking up too much cymbals. You may have to play around with the EQ. The kick mic sounds a bit too hot I think too.

Work on one drum at a time. Don't use a ton of effects until you get the hang of it. Keep the gain low. Practice moving the mics around especially the over heads. in front of the kit, behind the kit etc. I bet that will get less harsh cymbals.


Platinum Member
I didn't listen to your video yet but I can tell you that you have too many loose variable for anyone to decipher. Like no one will know if the drums are tuned poorly or recorded poorly. I'd isolate the drum sound and perhaps just use one overhead mic and nothing but snare, toms, and kick. Your cymbals don't need tuning. There is just as much skill in recording drums as playing them from what I gather-I use just a simple internal mic video recorder that's idiot proof.
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