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Condenser mic safe for kick ? (Samson C03, 142dB SPL max)

Discussion in 'Drums' started by clintrubber, Jul 11, 2004.

  1. clintrubber

    clintrubber Guest


    A bit of a last-minute question: we'll be recording the day after tomorrow and we were wondering about max kickdrum SPL-levels.

    In other words, can a condenser mic specified at 142dB SPL max
    (0.5% THD, 1kHz, 10dB pad engaged) be safely used in, or in front of a kick ?

    We have intended other mics for other sources already and have this one (Samson C03) left. It'd be a shame to damage it but if it can withstand a kick we expect it'll be usable for the task.

    In addition (assuming it'll be OK as far as the max-SPL goes), this mic can do omni, card & fig-8. The card. setting will work we guess, but who knows the omni sounds more natural (and because it's close to the kick, other sources will be a lot softer).


  2. RecorderMan

    RecorderMan Distinguished Member

    Mar 28, 2001
    Re: Condenser mic safe for kick ? (Samson C03, 142dB SPL ma

    you can use a condenser on a kick. It's really ribbons you have to be carefull with. Some folks use a pop filter to protect the capsule. I use 47FET's and U67's (both condensers) quite often. Use the 10db pad.
    As for pattern , experiment. Figure-8 will give you more bottom, omni more accurate, cardiod something else.
  3. djui5

    djui5 Guest

    I put my condensors about 2-3' in front of the kick....works great with a mic inside too

    Of course..as always...this won't apply for everything....gotta find what works for the song.
  4. NolanVenhola

    NolanVenhola Guest

    I've been more happy with an AKG C2000B with the -10 dB pad engaged than I ever was with a D-112.
  5. clintrubber

    clintrubber Guest

    Thanks all !

    This sounds like: "just use it, and if it doesn't sound distorted it won't get damaged either", right ?

    About positioning & pattern: we'll try omni & card. Indeed hard to tell upfront what we'll be getting.

    I'm not sure if we'll be able to put the mic inside the kick and if so, I'm not sure if the air flow there can be too much ? (And wondering the same for putting it at the cutout in the front skin).

    OK, we'll start with the CO3 in front of the kick and see from there.

    Thanks !

  6. Kurt Foster

    Kurt Foster Distinguished Member

    Jul 2, 2002
    77 Sunset Lane.
    If RM says it's ok .... iit must be.

    Personally myself, the thought of using a LD condenser on a kick drum is frightening ... I might try it outside the drum with the cap angled away a bit ... and in spite of RMs post I would never place a condenser inside a kick drum .
  7. clintrubber

    clintrubber Guest

    from Kurt:
    We sure had the same feeling ! In addition, I wouldn't like to see that fresh new CO3-mic that our drummer bought being trashed by his own enthusiasm.

    Everything seems to fit (for a change...): better suited sound by using it outside the kick, and no fear of damage.

    We've previously been testing to use a MD441 inside, slightly away from where the beater-hits-skin point and an PZM outside, in front of the kick. That sounded good but we need to move that 441 over to somewhere else. We'll see how the LD will compare but from the various reactions it's clear it can be good and even better suited.



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