Drum microphone sets

Thunder 42

Silver Member
DW, I'm in the market for a quality drum mic set for live play, and would appreciate experience with and wisdom on current gear available. I play a four piece with two snares. Budget $500 +/-. This is new territory for me. Many thanks in advance.
 

FreDrummer

Silver Member
You really didn't mention if you want to go the basic snare, BD, 2 ovhd route or mic everything. I mic everything, not so much for what goes to the mains but for what I hear in my IEMS.

I really like the Audix D2's on rack toms, the D4 on floor tom, and the i5 on snare. Then, I go with the EV nd868 on bass. All of the aforementioned mics are very plug-and-play for live use, requiring little to no EQ. I use the rode M5 matched pair for overheads to both hear my cymbals and get a little overall ambience. Our sound guy generally only puts the bass and snare into the mains, and occasionally a little of the toms (he only brings up the ovhd's on Led Zepp's What Is And What Should Never Be because the ride ping is so integral to the song).

Although not often mentioned around here, buying used mics can allow you to get good quality mics and stay in your budget. Dynamic mics are generally pretty rugged, and you can tell, by outward appearance, if a mic has been used and abused. More often, these mics can be found for sale by folks who only used them in their home, or at least took good care of them (again, physical appearance will tell the story). I only bought the condenser M5's new. Another thing: I think a common tactic by many of the big sound companies on ebay, etc., is to call a mic "used" to circumvent the manufacturer's minimum advertised price. For example, Audix may stipulate the MAP for a D2 is $179. The retailer then presents the mic as "used," stating it was only used for an in-store demo. The mics I have received were all in mint, like-new condition. I guess they figure the $90-110 offering price still gives them enough profit margin and keeps the manufacturer happy. All that being said, you DO have to be on the lookout for counterfeits (especially Shure SM 57's and 58's). But, when one of these ebay sellers has 12,000+ feedback with a 99.5% positive score, they're not pedalling counterfeit crap.

Now, if you are looking at recording, these mics are all very serviceable, but there are better choices out there (which are also way above your budget). But, I think the "used" approach can give you some great mics that are a BIG step above the $150 complete drum mic packages on MF, ETC.
 

Thunder 42

Silver Member
Thanks for your replies. This is helpful. I am considering a 5 or 7 mic set. Any additional thoughts are welcome.
 

STXBob

Gold Member
I'm probably going to get crucified for this, but...

...just get something like this:

http://www.guitarcenter.com/Digital...nd-Package-1500000014108.gc?pfm=item_page.rr1

Done. No, they're not the best mics in the world. But you're not going for studio quality. You're trying to get a good mix with the amplified players in your band. Yeah, it's nice to have Shure or Audix or whatever, but I can attest from personal experience that the mics in that set are durable and sound just fine.

That set gives you everything you need, including stands (for kick and overheads) and cables. You can get just the mics for $199. In that range is the CAD PRO-7 set. Again, worth a look.

I use the core to that Digital Reference set and have had no problems whatever. I usually only mic kick and snare, and am pleased with the results. The tom mics give good results, too. No idea about the overheads, because I don't have them and would rarely use them if I did.
But for that kind of money, you can't go too far wrong.
 
T

The SunDog

Guest
I'm probably going to get crucified for this, but...

...just get something like this:

http://www.guitarcenter.com/Digital...nd-Package-1500000014108.gc?pfm=item_page.rr1.

This isn't a bad recommendation given the +/- $500 spending range. The closest name brand pack that hits that price is the Audix FP7 at $499.99 and I would not spend that much for F series Audix mics. The Digital Reference kit is surprisingly good quality at its price and is comparable to the FP7. Unless you want to buck up and get the Audix DP7 for $899 (and well worth it), it's what I would recommend too. Then you can use the money you save to buy a D6 for the kick.
 

STXBob

Gold Member
This isn't a bad recommendation given the +/- $500 spending range. The closest name brand pack that hits that price is the Audix FP7 at $499.99 and I would not spend that much for F series Audix mics. The Digital Reference kit is surprisingly good quality at its price and is comparable to the FP7. Unless you want to buck up and get the Audix DP7 for $899 (and well worth it), it's what I would recommend too. Then you can use the money you save to buy a D6 for the kick.

Yeah, I don't think I would record with the Digital Reference mics. But to get a decent sound to a live crowd? Hard to beat those or the CADs for the price.

It's worth noting the clips on the DR mics are less than stellar. I haven't broken one yet - it's been more than a year of twice-a-month gigging - but there are lots of reports of clips breaking. The CAD clips are better, kind of, because they screw on (which also means they'll fit on die-cast rims, which the DR clips can have difficulty doing), but the couple of times I've used them I've had the CAD mounts come loose on me in the middle of gigs.

Swings and roundabouts.

Oh, and for those who wonder, I have indeed whacked the snot out of the DR mics and they kept working. This from a guy who once broke an SM57 by flailing at it with a 5B. ;-) What can I say? I'm not that good a drummer!
 

Thunder 42

Silver Member
Really helpful, guys, thanks! I picked up an Audix DP4 kit, and purchased a second DP6 kick mic and a few stands. For anyone interested, check out Reverb today, prices came down on the DP4 kit. I'm within my budget and pretty happy.

Appreciate the thoughts here: STXBob, SunDog, FreDrummer, TommyD, and Groov-E. Needed some rudder and you guys delivered. Thanks.
 
M

Matt Bo Eder

Guest
So how are these microphones being utilized? Are you just plugging them into your normal PA system? Or will you be doing a sub-mix of your own and then sending those to the house? Or do you plan on running your own sound independent of the main PA? Will you be in a position to hear your drums amplified?
 

Thunder 42

Silver Member
So how are these microphones being utilized? Are you just plugging them into your normal PA system? Or will you be doing a sub-mix of your own and then sending those to the house? Or do you plan on running your own sound independent of the main PA? Will you be in a position to hear your drums amplified?
Sub-mix, then to the house. Yes, I will hear them in my IEMs, and am looking forward to that. Meeting with our sound guy this Saturday to integrate.
 
M

Matt Bo Eder

Guest
Sub-mix, then to the house. Yes, I will hear them in my IEMs, and am looking forward to that. Meeting with our sound guy this Saturday to integrate.

So what kind of a mixer did you get for yourself?
 

Thunder 42

Silver Member
So what kind of a mixer did you get for yourself?
Not 100%, believe its Behringer S16, will know this weekend - using a remote digital snake that the band owns.
 
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Thunder 42

Silver Member
Really helpful, guys, thanks! I picked up an Audix DP4 kit, and purchased a second D6 kick mic and a few stands. For anyone interested, check out Reverb today, prices came down on the DP4 kit. I'm within my budget and pretty happy.

Appreciate the thoughts here: STXBob, SunDog, FreDrummer, TommyD, and Groov-E. Needed some rudder and you guys delivered. Thanks.
Now slightly over initial budget (but within revised...:)), in addition to the second D6 (FT), added D4 (FT)and D2 (rack tom). Done.
 

KamaK

Platinum Member
For live audio:

As long as the mics are functional, you can work with almost any of the sets available. The only mic that occasionally requires special attention is the BD mic. The GC deal should be fine.

For recording, it's a different story. Quality before quantity.
 
G

Ghostnote

Guest
I've used the Audix mics before and they sound great.
 
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beyondbetrayal

Platinum Member
save up and get the audix dp7.. or the DP5A

you didn't say the size of venue but if you mic your kick, snare, and toms you honestly don't need overheads until you are in a HUGE venue.

If your playing bars or venues under 1000 people your cymbals will be heard.

what kindof music? are you touring? how big of venues?

those audix mics are amazing and you can use them for recording later.

the D6 is my favorite kick mic ever.
 

Thunder 42

Silver Member
Contemporary Christian, multiple bands, both indoor and outdoor venues, less than 1000 currently.
 

Thunder 42

Silver Member
My Audix DP4 microphones + came late last week. They deliver, really do deliver. The D6 is a monster. Thrilled! (And Bo, the digital snake is a Behringer S16)
 

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