Drum Ports

Bonefrost

Member
Do I need a kick port in my reso head for recording?
I'm new to drums but have played guitar for 30+ yrs,so I can write and record a decent demo.
I have 2 originals I can play all the way thru that I'm going to record w/ me on drums.
Really dont want to cut a port,I did on my old kit w/ a coffee cup and a razor blade,it turned out pretty good,I just dont like how the head tears if you dont get a clean cut.
 

Bretton

Silver Member
Re: Kick drum port

need: no

could find extremely useful: yes.

heat up a metal can on the stove and melt a hole in the head, you'll get a clean circle for sure.

or there's the spend money on a product for cutting perfect holes route, and the kickport, which is supposed to further improve the sound.
 

KamaK

Platinum Member
Re: Kick drum port

Ported resonant heads allow you to capture a kick's beater and resonance with a single mic. It is not essential, but is one of the more common ways that "sound guys" like to mic kick drums.

My recommendation would be to try recording without it, and see if it you like the sound.
 

bermuda

Drummerworld Pro Drummer - Administrator
Staff member
Re: Kick drum port

The musical style usually governs the kick sound that fits best, or perhaps you have a particular sound in mind. Those factors will determine whether a ported kick is a good idea or not.

If you need definition, just a click and some thump, a port and a pillow inside is a good start.

If you want definition with some air, reduce the amount of padding (maybe lay a small bath towel in the bottom of the kick so it touches both heads.)

If you seek a wide open, boomy, ringy sound, I'd say leave the front head unported and experiment with tunings. Close-miking is not recommended in most cases. You can get a great sound with a mic maybe 3 or 4 feet in front of the kick.

Note that just because you port the front head, you don't need to put any padding inside. Kick batter head types accomplish various levels of damping, so the drum doesn't howl (unless you're specifically looking for boom and long decay!) Also, just because you don't port the head, doesn't mean you can't lean a pillow against it to tame it as needed.

Bermuda
 

Bonefrost

Member
Re: Kick drum port

need: no

could find extremely useful: yes.

heat up a metal can on the stove and melt a hole in the head, you'll get a clean circle for sure.

or there's the spend money on a product for cutting perfect holes route, and the kickport, which is supposed to further improve the sound.
Wow thats a really good idea!
I guess tricks of the trade.
I saw those cutters and its not even worth it.Its a reso head,doesnt get brutalized daily.I'll probably run my stocker forever.

I use silicone fuel line around the hole.I started using that cuz I had a bunch from my radio control planes/trucks phase.

So I'll burn a hole and line it w/ purple silicone fuel line. and post a pic...

Thanks for all the info!!!!
BNz'
 

Bonefrost

Member
Re: Kick drum port

The musical style usually governs the kick sound that fits best, or perhaps you have a particular sound in mind. Those factors will determine whether a ported kick is a good idea or not.

If you need definition, just a click and some thump, a port and a pillow inside is a good start.

If you want definition with some air, reduce the amount of padding (maybe lay a small bath towel in the bottom of the kick so it touches both heads.)

If you seek a wide open, boomy, ringy sound, I'd say leave the front head unported and experiment with tunings. Close-miking is not recommended in most cases. You can get a great sound with a mic maybe 3 or 4 feet in front of the kick.

Note that just because you port the front head, you don't need to put any padding inside. Kick batter head types accomplish various levels of damping, so the drum doesn't howl (unless you're specifically looking for boom and long decay!) Also, just because you don't port the head, doesn't mean you can't lean a pillow against it to tame it as needed.

Bermuda
Thanks!
I have a pillow,but I like a bit of ring.I've seen kits that had a rolled up towel in them.Sounded good.
I'm just playing knucklehead metal.But have a bunch of bluegrass and acoustic stuff written.Want the kick to sound like a drum,not just thud...thud...thud.
 

GeoB

Gold Member
Re: Kick drum port

lots of folks use them
lots of folk don't


Some folks remove the reso head, some don't
Some folks put an EQ pad inside and replace the reso

I've done kick ports and found them ineffective for my purposes.


So I use an EQ pillow on the inside
Retained the reso head
Slapped a good tuning on both heads
and use the EQ pad for the beater (which is probably standard practice at this point in time).

Old jazzers played wide open (ring) and tuned for it. Bernard Purdie on YT (in an old instructional) is playing wide open, lots of ring. It sounds good.

Is wide open the proper term? I've have heard it called that for years.

Insert banjo and harmonica break here.
 
Last edited:

Bonefrost

Member
Re: Kick drum port

lots of folks use them
lots of folk don't

Some folks remove the reso head, some don't
Some folks put an EQ pad inside and replace the reso

I've done kick ports and found them ineffective for my purposes.


So I use an EQ pillow on the inside
Retained the reso head
Slapped a good tuning on both heads
and use the EQ pad for the beater (which is probably standard practice at this point in time).

Insert banjo and harmonica break here.
Ha!!Great!!!


I guess I'll try mic'n it before any cutting or burning!
Its a total studio kit,never ever will be played live.So I can set it up and kinda(yeah right!) leave it.
I'm also running triggers thru a D4,so I'll have a mix.If I need the thud I'll turn up the triggered track.


I'm playing Cigar Box Guitars dude.So a harmonica and banjo is right up my alley!!!!
 

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