Drum effects

Discussion in 'Tracking / Mixing / Editing' started by ErikFlipside, Dec 17, 2003.

  1. ErikFlipside

    ErikFlipside Guest

    I'd like to get a survey of what everybody likes to use on their drums with regards to reverbs, delays, and some oher spatial effects. Do you use outboard gear or plugins? what are they? any settings you like to shoot for? any tricks? I'm not looking for a "what's the best way blah blah blah" here, just whatever you like to do on your drums depending on the style. The music I deal with is mostly modern indie rock and punk along the lines of Thursday, Thrice, Finch, Brand New, AFI, etc...thanks!
  2. Davedog

    Davedog Distinguished Member

    Tricks?? We don need no stinkin tricks...!

    ahh ooookey.

    I have used this trick successfully.At the mix, I side-chain a gated (adjustable) reverb off the compressor on the snare.I adjust the gate and the verb length to as long as I want the snare to stay on the beat.This gets sent to another channel and of course if ya got a LOT of toys theres another insert point there to screw with things to yer hearts content.I usually leave the compressed track dry.I like an older sounding verb on the side-chained channel...usually an Alesis Midiverb two or an SPX90...something 80's and trashy.
  3. AudioGaff

    AudioGaff Well-Known Member

    Like Da Dog, Most of the time I like a somewhat trashy reverb on the snare for up tempo songs. But then trashy to me is a Sony MU-R201, PCM70 or SPX-900. For ballads the snare might still get a PCM70, but is more likely to get a full engine on the M5000 and may get both engines if I don't need to use the other one for anything else. Sometimes even a combo of the above mentioned. And I sometimes may even throw an Eventide in there somewhere, for effects as well as for other DSP like eq, compression, pitchshifting the snare and or kick then adding and a triggered LFO for some sub-harmonics and mabe even some noise or THD get more of that drum machine cheesball effect.

    For the whole kit I may use the ambience or a room preset from the Lexicon M300, or the same from the second M5000 engine.

    Besides using a compressor and it's sidechain for the bass/kick thing or for the gated snare thing, or patching in an eq to trigger the compressor more of one freq than another, one trick that I use often is to put a compressor using it with high ratio more as a limiter, before the reverb to catch peaks that might overload the reverb and/or punch holes in reverb output level causing me more grief while mixing. Here is chance for those cheap crap compressors that has been collecting dust and/or holding that door open, to be used to do a decent job at something worthwhile.
  4. Davedog

    Davedog Distinguished Member

    Like I said....'If ya got a lot of toys......'

    I really like that idea of putting a comp in front of the verb to smooth out its input....
  5. Doublehelix

    Doublehelix Well-Known Member

    OK Dave, can you expand on this a bit for us that are more dense then others? ;)

  6. Davedog

    Davedog Distinguished Member

    Okay...A side chain of a device(it could be one of many ie.verb unit,compressor,gater,etc)is simply a trigger and its sensitivity is adjustable according to the amount of signal you're letting in.I have a TC M-One XL effects unit or sometimes a lexicon...These have 'engines' and you can of course set them up to have a reverb with a gate that closes the reverb at a given point.When I put my compressor in the insert of my snare channel it becomes my trigger as it has a sidechain feature.I keep this channel dry.Out of the sidechain output I send the signal to the reverb unit,or any chain of units you might want to use, and send this from the end of the chain back into the input of another channel of the board.This channel will have whatever effects you're triggering as well as any you might want to add through an aux or effects bus.The length of its 'hit' in the mix will depend entirely on the settings of the compressor on the original channel.This is what I mean by having it 'stay on the beat'....I used to use gates a lot more when it was the sound...now everything is louder than everything else, and gates are becoming passe.
  7. Doublehelix

    Doublehelix Well-Known Member

    Thanks! I get it now! Sounds like fun!
  8. I use the Waves Rennaissance Reverb. For overheads I usually dial in (actually mouse in, I guess) a very slight amount of reverb, usually a medium sized room preset. On the snare and toms, I might add a little bit of the drum plate preset, but most of the time I don't put any extra 'verb on the individual drums.

    However, this may not be real applicable to what you're doing, because the music I do is not very "rawk." It kind of sounds like Belle and Sebastian meets R.E.M. meets the Beach Boys.
  9. by

    by Guest

    delays at 8th or 4th notes, just bearly audible. Also, some 32nd note (no feedback) can sometimes make things sound bigger.

    Reamping is fun aswell. Ton's of possiblities there. Though I tend to just tuck it in a little to help gel the sound. Or make it more beefy.
  10. ErikFlipside

    ErikFlipside Guest

    how do you establish the length of the delay for something like a 32nd note?
  11. Idjiit

    Idjiit Guest

    The gated snare reverb is pretty common with those producers, so definitely give that a try. Also try using a really fast, short delay instead of (or in addition to) the usual room verb. You hear this a lot on the early Elvis Costello records and is one of my favorite drum tricks.

    For more aggressive stuff like you're into try playing with overdrive/distortion. Usually just on the kick and toms. Sometimes I use a second track of distorted snare, maybe just in one ear with a little delay. Usually this kind of stuff is just used on certain sections to add drama/emphasis. If you wanna hear some whack drum stuff you may want to look outside of the punk/emo realm. Check out this song from a band called Couch which uses both distortion and delay:

    http://www.swiftbennett.com/audio/couch - track1.mp3

    EDIT: Sorry that MP3 sounds so whacked... The CD it came off of is bad. :(

    I haven't been seeing much innovation in the latest punk/emo stuff unfortunately. Seems like they've sorta stagnated into a super high-quality recording - they sound good, but they all sorta sound the same to me.

    If you want some other ideas, check out Ted Leo's "Hearts of Oak" - there's some pretty cool/weird drums sounds on that record. If you haven't gotten into Shellac yet, grab some of their records - if you want the absolute extreme of that aesthetic (big big room sound) grab the first Constantines record.
  12. Paladyne

    Paladyne Guest

    a gated white noise generator that opens everytime the snare hits. Ultratrash!!
  13. ships

    ships Guest

    another good way to get added energy into the drumsound is to send a stereo sub-mix of the kit into a pair of compressors...a "fatso".or "distressors".etc.and blend that into the drumsound........experiment with the the attack on the compressor etc......and try different amounts of compression........usually what seems like waaay too much compression blended in subtly can sound really good......just dont go "by the book'...you can also sub the drums into the pod or someother distortion box..and subtely blend that in.........try some more industrial compressors also.......like mxr guitar pedals.and mix that sound in........aaaah.the fun of it all
  14. Mundox

    Mundox Guest

    First, I run all my individual drum tracks through Antares, to get the perfect tuning according to each song. Then I run each track through at least 2 different compressors, preferably LA2As and Distressors. If I still don't achieve enough compression, I would bus the drums and patch a 1954 German Broadcast Limiter.( I don't know how to pronounce its name) For reverb, I send the tracks to Capitol Records to be played back in their stairwell and record that perfect ambiance.Once I get back all the tracks I run them through a behringer channel, gain cranked up, it does something to the sound that I can't describe.

    Sorry I just wanted to have a bit of fun, I hope you enjoyed it. :D
    But seriously SPX90 is my fave for snare grit. You gotta eq the returns though.
  15. AudioGaff

    AudioGaff Well-Known Member

    Not bad Mundox, You really had me going there! And yes a SPX-90 or any in the SPX series are indeed very well suited for snare.
  16. vagelis

    vagelis Guest

    .......I thought that it's normal anyway to compress the snare/bassrum/toms before the reverb or whatever. I don't understand where's THE special trick about that
  17. AudioGaff

    AudioGaff Well-Known Member

    The trick there is just as I described. I am using one comp for the dynamic control and tone for a specific drum sound and another seperate compressor with different parameters to control how the drum signal gets processed before and into the reverb. Two different things. Inconsistancy in levels going into the reverb from drums or any other source can cause peaks in the reverb input and output as well as the reverb sound. Using a seperate comp before the reverb helps to give better control and makes mixing easier with one less thing to worry about or have to compensate for. If the reverb needs drastic level changes, I want it to be because I decide and want it too, not because of some wild, unexpected event. If drummers and other performers could always be predictable and consistant, I wouldn't need to do that.
  18. Davedog

    Davedog Distinguished Member

    If drummers were predictable we woulda never had DM 808's.

    Sorry but it was such a good setup.Thanks Gaff.
  19. AudioGaff

    AudioGaff Well-Known Member

    Damn Dog, Bit me in the ass and I didn't even see it comming...
  20. Hack

    Hack Active Member

    I'll be honest, I have noticed reverb peaks before in my mixes. So I just turn down the send and loose some of the effect I wanted cause I thought I had to. But it never really occured to me to compress the send into the unit. Now that I know, I cant believe I never thought of it, cause it makes too much sense.


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