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Compressing overheads

Discussion in 'Room & Overhead' started by Alécio Costa - Brazil, Aug 1, 2003.

  1. Alécio Costa - Brazil

    Alécio Costa - Brazil Well-Known Member

    Although I am not a big fan of compressed overheads I have to confess that I have just burned my tongue recently-lol

    I am finishing a new song of my album and realized that a combi of BF 660´s and CB´s did allow me to achieve nice tone.

    So what are your choices on compressing overheads?
    Please, the two teams.. Hardware and Plugs!

    BTW... PT TDM 5.1.1/OS 9.2 Mix

    Nice weekend
  2. Davedog

    Davedog Distinguished Member

    Seems to me if you want to identify the phase between the overhead mics, compressing them will show this very quickly.I might gate the overheads if a drummer has exceptionally long winded cymbals, but only then.
  3. I like the "rock" sound I get from sending my OHs through a pair of DBX 160XTs, getting 2-5 db of compression at a 2:1 ratio. I love those VCAs...
  4. Alécio Costa - Brazil

    Alécio Costa - Brazil Well-Known Member

    gate over heads?
    wouldn´t it be better make fades? the problem is if you have a contunuous overheads. Yesterday I was adding real toms and drums to a new song of my soon to be released album and sometimes it was necessary to make fades with the gates and cymbals.

    too much tom resonance is cool if it is an instrumental or so but in the middle of a clean pop song.. ys, they were properly tuned...

    what about others? any nice combis?
    Nice wekeend
  5. Melange

    Melange Guest

    I don't know why anyone would gate overheads...

    As far as compressing them, I don't unless I'm going for an old sound in which case a ribbon mic would be the OH mic of choice.
  6. M Brane

    M Brane Guest

    You can also bus your overs to another track, squash 'em good, and blend to taste.

    Helps to get that "old school" cymbal bloom without killing the transients. Just be careful of phase problems. Sometimes you can trick 'em into working for you though. ;)

  7. Alécio Costa - Brazil

    Alécio Costa - Brazil Well-Known Member

    A very underrated plug among the daw scene is Waves PAZ. MAn, that little thing can save your butt in several situations.
    Minor mic placement adjustments can be translated thru the GUI.
    I use two AT4050´s for Overs.
  8. I get a lot of my overall kit sound from my OHs, so I don't think I would ever gate (but never say never). David
  9. Alécio Costa - Brazil

    Alécio Costa - Brazil Well-Known Member

    yes, I just can not understand that. well, the friend has his own reasons to do that.
  10. Davedog

    Davedog Distinguished Member

    Not overheads per se then...more of a tight cymbaling micing when tight micing everything in the kit..with no bleed...and the cymbals as big and heavy as trashcan lids...why would you want a ride cymbal to ring into the third or fourth bar after its not being played anymore?....I guess i didnt spend enough time explaining the setup necessary for gating an overhead mic....though its not an 'overhead' in the sense you're all thinking of it in...ie. an overall sound consisting of all the drums and the cymbals..

    This is something I've run into a few times...mostly heavy rockers with a LOT of drums...

    As far as compressing them, Its never worked for me and I do know what the bloom is that was mentioned...and while I can see how this could be used in a musical context within a mix, I just never really cared for the artifice of it.I usually try to encourage drummers to use cymbals that are soft and light for recording....those that tend to get out of the way on their own and while effective as a splash,crash,or ding, will not intrude nor cover-up any of the other instrumentation or drumbeat.

    These i record 'open' with no artifacts on them...these are what I would consider overheads...sorry for the mis-interpretation.

    And then in saying this, I have compressed a hihat mic for the very purpose thats been mentioned.....
  11. Alécio Costa - Brazil

    Alécio Costa - Brazil Well-Known Member

    I agree with you! I sometimes do fades.
  12. Davedog

    Davedog Distinguished Member

    Alecio, the fader riding is the BEST way for this and can be accomplished easily with automation...which I lack.Hard assemble a bunch of tracks and have to worry about that damn cymbal fader.So the next best thing was gating...and really a softkneed release so it didnt just leave the building in a hurry and you had to set the sensitivity so that it didnt slam back on...Kepek gates.. back in the day...very usable very musical....peece
  13. Davedog,
    Am I correct in reading that you sometimes close-mic your cymbals and put a soft gate (duck) to weed out the rest of the kit? I have never tried it, but will keep it in mind. Love that Valley People gear... David
  14. falkon2

    falkon2 Well-Known Member

    I've always wondered how some rock tracks had those constant crashes which sorta... "unfold" maybe a split second after the actual hit. POD's Boom is a pretty good example of this happening a lot - along with that hi-hat sound which is... there-but-kinda-indistinct ambience.

    I suppose it has to do with compression and dynamics processing... ideas, anyone?
  15. Davedog

    Davedog Distinguished Member

    Heya Doc....Yeah back a few eons ago when I had a lot to do with a 16 tracker mostly pro studio, we would get these 'hair bands' in and the drummer would have these gigantic tubs and lots of em.The 80's had that close miced drum sound where everything in the kit got a mic.Usually we would record bass and drums and maybe a guide track of vocal or guitar, and we had a very nice mic collection.So the drums would start with sometimes as many as 16 mics..especially if there were two kicks...and usually there were.These would go down as 12 tracks and when we got the sound right and the track right, I would build a 4 track for drums as a sub-mix and then we'd go from there.A lot of these drummers would have the specific crash and ride individually miced PLUS we always used 2 U87i's in the overheads.The cymbals would have typically SM81,SM7,MD421 or something on em.And we had 6 channels of Kepek's and 4 channels of Aphex 612's,and 4 channels of dbx 363's.Lots of gates...it was the style then...and yes we used a lot of them like duckers..you could really build a drum sound with all those.....if you knew how to use em.After getting it into 4 tracks I'd put a lot of crush on em across the sub-bus.Typically Urie/JBL 7110's and a Valley People compressor.. I cant remember its number.We had in the box, 6 SM81,D10,D12,3 MD421,Md441,MD409,10 SM57,SM7,2 RE16,RE20,2 U87i, there were more...but we really made good drums.large space and the drum booth was quite good.It had a moveable ceiling with three kinds of materials for the ceiling available. and plexi side walls combined with custom goboes.

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