thoughts on recording drums with internal microphones

diosdude

Silver Member
I've been intrigued by May electronics internal microphone system and have devised my own makeshift internal microphones for my toms for some upcoming recording. Right now, i've got small-diaphragm cardioid mics in each tom with the element about 1 1/2" from the head. My bassist, who is an aspiring self taught engineer is being a total stick in the mud about the whole situation saying that they will never work and sound like "a tin can" which i always retort that he's only ever recorded 1 band so he doesn't have the expertise or experience to have come up with such an opinion. His take is that we can't position the mic when it's in the drum, my take is that with the mics being internal, there's really less of a need to get positioning perfect. I won't have to worry about crosstalk, room ambience or frequency cancellation when the mics are inside the drum and i can create some incredible sounding stereo pan effects that would be impossible to do with standard external mics. Truthfully, i don't know either, i've never recorded with internals, save for the bass drum. Does anyone with actual experience have any opinions?
 
J

jamndrummer

Guest


DW actually makes some of their kits with the mic's built into the drum. You might check them out and use that information to build a case with your bass player. You both may learn some pro's and con's on the issue.
 

eddiehimself

Platinum Member
When i recorded my bass drum with no damping inside the drum i got some really weird overtones from the shell, so i'd imagine that would be worse in a smaller drum like a tom. If you do try this, it might be an idea to just have the top heads on the toms to reduce all the SPLs
 

Vipercussionist

Silver Member
When i recorded my bass drum with no damping inside the drum i got some really weird overtones from the shell, so i'd imagine that would be worse in a smaller drum like a tom. If you do try this, it might be an idea to just have the top heads on the toms to reduce all the SPLs
I've done just that with great success, numerous times . . . BUT . . . I put a couple, three, four handfuls of cotton balls inside the drum, not to muffle the heads, but to tame the smooth, reflective surface of the shell. I just let 'em float around in there and so far, so good. Years ago I used a small sheet of adhesive felt stuck to the shell. I'm estimating it was about 12inchs by 10inchs?? It was a long time ago. It DID have the added advantage of staying where you put it.

I got the "adhesive felt" idea from a Snare Drum I had at the time. It was a Premier Heavy Rock Nine. It had felt strips inside on the shell to thwart off bad overtones without dampening the actual head, so I tried it on my kick drum. IT WORKED!! You can use as much or as little as you need to get the job done.
 

Living Dead Drummer

Platinum Member
I have played kits with the May systems on everything, and my Kick does have a Beta 52 mounted inside as well. For live use, I loved it and the drums sounded killer, but I never tried for recording. I would try it, and worse comes to work, it doesn't work and you mic them the regular way.
 
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