Need help with tuning

Drumolator

Platinum Member
Matt Abts of Gov. Mule says he tunes high because the drums sound lower from out front. It seems true to me, so I vote for tuning higher. Peace and goodwill.
 

ToneT

Well-known Member
+1 for tuning higher
Loose skins feel rather sloppy for me. A bit much groaning and rumbling even with heads in tune with themselves.
The impact is more audible than the tone of the drum. Others may prefer that.
I tune both heads to the same pitch, medium to medium-low pitch.
If your drums have tone they will have a better chance of projecting.
Bass drum batter head tuned a bit tighter than loose slap will feel more solid.
Tune a drum too loose and you lose the finer notes, as Bruford once said.
 

SDdrummer1

Member
+1 for tuning higher
Loose skins feel rather sloppy for me. A bit much groaning and rumbling even with heads in tune with themselves.
The impact is more audible than the tone of the drum. Others may prefer that.
I tune both heads to the same pitch, medium to medium-low pitch.
If your drums have tone they will have a better chance of projecting.
Bass drum batter head tuned a bit tighter than loose slap will feel more solid.
Tune a drum too loose and you lose the finer notes, as Bruford once said.
That's precisely what I felt at my last gig. Drums just felt slow, and didn't feel right.
 

timmdrum

Silver Member
No doubt. I can't control the venues we play in, but hopefully one of these days we'll be in a good enough club so I can get miked.

And trust me, I'm not a weak hitter or soft by any stretch. These warehouse type places with the high ceilings are just tough to sound great in
Because these are not music venues primarily. They're breweries who also have live bands, and I'm assuming they don't want it too loud. Some of the places don't even have stages.
If you guys are bringing your own PA, why aren't you in it? So, I'll add: don't assume anything. Mic up, per the advice I gave, re: quality vs. quantity, and if they don't say anything about the volume, then you're good. I've played similar rooms (those are the ones where you need some directional and low-end sound reinforcement the most) using the method I described and haven't had a complaint.
 
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SDdrummer1

Member
If you guys are bringing your own PA, why aren't you in it? So, I'll add: don't assume anything. Mic up, per the advice I gave, re: quality vs. quantity, and if they don't say anything about the volume, then you're good. I've played similar rooms (those are the ones where you need some directional and low-end sound reinforcement the most) using the method I described and haven't had a complaint.
Sometimes we do bring our own. I'll need to look into buying mics so we can get me dialed into the mix.

I know I've been playing with tuning on most of my drums way too low. I've got to wait a few weeks until I can actually jam again, but I look forward to trying out these higher tunings.
 

SmoothOperator

Gold Member
My suggestion is to buy a handheld capture device. This way, when you listen back to the recording, you can also judge how your drums sound in the audience with the tuning you use. So my suggestion....record your next gig, listen back, and try an pinpoint what you do or don't like about your individual drum tunings. What you hear at the throne is not indicative of what your drums sound like 20, 30, 40 feet away.

Not only will your own ears be able to tell if you like how your tunings sound in the audience, your overall time feel and drumming will be on full display for you to evaluate.

I think that would help to a point, but you still have to keep in mind that you are listening to a copy with all kinds of issues with recording and reproduction. Which frequencies did the mic pick up, can you reproduce the sound at decibels they would be live with all the headroom, all these things will as the recording engineers say "lie to you", because you aren't hearing what the audience is hearing.

I think live is particularly interesting, because where things sit in the mix will even depend on where the listener is in relation to the snare and other instruments.
 

moxman

Silver Member
Ya... I meant to ask if there was a PA.. at the very least the kick and snare should be in the mix. if you have vocal mics/singers in front it will pick up a bit of cymbals and toms if you're lucky.
 

SDdrummer1

Member
I tried a gig with my drums tuned high and they sounded even worse. I'm sure I had them a bit too high so they were borderline choked. These drums seem to have an almost non existant sweet spot. They go from passable to choked in about a quarter turn.

Not digging these at all.
 
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