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drum trigger recording

Discussion in 'Drums' started by Skullshifter, Jun 4, 2005.

  1. Skullshifter

    Skullshifter Guest

    I was wanting to know about recording drum triggers.Our drummer uses them live and wants to use them for recording,he uses an Alesis DM5 unit triggered by Roland acoustic drum triggers.My problem is i dont kno what to record?Should i record the MIDI or the audio coming off the DM5.I am told that if i use the MIDI i can replace the little parts like triplets that sometimes dont trigger correctly,which would be really nice but i am little unsure as how to do this in SONAR 4 P.E.?I know how to record and play back the MIDI tracks just dont know how to edit.Any help will be greatly appreciated.
  2. Kev

    Kev Well-Known Member

    head for the drum forum for more info

    yes record both midi and audio
    ... you will have more to work with later
    don't expect too much from your early recordings
    ... until you learn more about this drum tigger stuff

    some things are good
    some things are bad
  3. Todzilla

    Todzilla Active Member

    I've done it a number of ways. I found out the hard way that the best thing to do is just to record individual drums with the best side rejecting micing you can get. (this is in addition to overheads and possibly sweet sounding bleedier mics for acoustic sound).

    Run triggering off the rejecting mic tracks. If need be, you can EQ the signal between track and Trigger input. This gives you many more options that trying to capture MIDI data up front where you have to commit to threshold, retriggering settings up front.

    I found the above approach to be far superior to committing to triggering up front.

    FWIW, I use 57s and mutt cardiod mics that ultimately feed an Alesis D4. I use the Neuman and Crown mics for the tasty overhead stuff. Sounds pretty good.
  4. eddies880

    eddies880 Guest

    Todd-----------------youve just answered some questions for me-------------------I really hate recording drum tracks-------dont get me wrong------I dont mind it----but its really time consuming.
    I recently visited a studio where the engineer also uses the DM5,along with miced drums------------------I didnt really catch all he was saying-----------------but what he explained to me was that he used the dm5 after the fact----i presume he meant recording the drums miced--------the running into the dm5?
    Todd---------------------please reply ------------------I have to finish the drum tracks by this weekend.
  5. Clive Banks

    Clive Banks Guest

    I LOVE MY Alesis D4 when it gets down to dirty filthy drum triiggering.It doesn't reallY NEED to be a defined sound just the fact you have that expansion on a track rather than spill ETC really helps you out. :wink:
  6. eddies880

    eddies880 Guest

    Whats the difference between the d4 and the dm5?
  7. imloggedin

    imloggedin Guest

    you can record the midi and use a DXI plugin like Native Instruments Battery for some pretty good drum sounds. thats how i would do it if i was recording an electronic set.
  8. anonymous

    anonymous Guests

    If I use an Audix D6, or an AKG D112 to record the kick drum. Can I use that track to trigger the DM5? Or is a different mic gonna be better?
    Second question...mic's can be used in place of triggers? Basically meaning "don't buy any triggers"? Yes or no
  9. Kev

    Kev Well-Known Member

    I think you can us the mics.

    Interfacing the Mics XL to the trigger input might be an issue for you.

    but if you record the kit as normal and then use a send to the trigger unit, a simple adapter lead should get you by
  10. pr0gr4m

    pr0gr4m Well-Known Member

    Yes. The DM5 or the D4 can be triggered by regular old audio. You could yell real loud into a mic and use that as a trigger. :D All you need is an XLR to 1/4 cable for the trigger inputs.

    When you use audio as a trigger, you need to really work with the trigger input settings to eliminate false triggers and that sort of stuff. It makes it a bit tougher. If you have a guy who slams the snare drum, it will probably bleed through every mic and set off all the triggers on the machine. With triggers, it's much easier to eliminate that since they work off of vibration. There can still be some false triggers but usually much less.

    I've actually taken recorded drum tracks, output the audio from each track individually and fed that into my D4. I record the MIDI data from the trigger into my DAW, then use that to trigger new sounds either via the D4 or Battery or whatever.

    Back to the original post...

    You say your drummer wants to use the triggers for recording. To me it sounds like he wants to use the sounds off of the DM5 as opposed to the natural sounds of his kit. If that is the case, and assuming he is a good drummer, then all you really need to record is the audio out of the DM5. However, that only gives you a stereo mix of the drums. You can alter them individually after recording.

    I would record both the audio from the DM5 and the MIDI data from the triggers. Then I would run play back the MIDI data through the DM5 and record each drum individually. For example, set up the MIDI so that it is only transmitting the Kick drum notes. Record the output of the DM5 to a track and you'll have your Kick drum track. Do the same for the snare, toms, and whatever else.

    It's a bit time consuming but it works.
  11. Sork

    Sork Active Member

    You can pan the kick left, and use main L for that, and pan the snare to the right and use the main R for that. I always do this, and if I'm using tom sounds of the DM5, I route them to the aux output prepanned. then I have one track each for kick and snare, and toms prepanned.
  12. eddies880

    eddies880 Guest

    Youve answered my questions----------what i want to do is to record the drums with mics,then use the sends form each drum to trigger the dm5 as you have mentioned.----thanks
  13. Todzilla

    Todzilla Active Member

    I have been remiss on this thread.

    Bottom line: I have a full set of drum triggers sitting in a box gathering dust. As long as I have sufficient tracks to put each drum-to-be-triggered on its own track, I just record for isolation, then trigger after the fact.

    Not only can a D4 be triggered by regular old audio, I found that regular old audio works better than triggers, as long as you are diligently rejecting neighbor drums on each track, through judicious use of placement, mic selection, etc... In extreme cases you can put the audio into some tweaked out EQ to ensure it gets preferential treatment in the D4.
  14. eddies880

    eddies880 Guest

    Got it-thanks--------Ill do almost anything to make drum tracking easier!
  15. voidar

    voidar Guest

    Either record the midi out, takes less space, or ditch the module and record just the trigger pulses. Use some sound-replacer.
  16. anonymous

    anonymous Guests

    Thanks man

    Todzilla, you are the man! Thanks a lot. You helped me and probubly 3 others in 2 paragraphs. I had 2 or 3 post on various sites and you were the only one who knew "what was going on and how to explain it". Seems like alot of guys know how to do it but not how to explain "how to do it" very well.
  17. eddies880

    eddies880 Guest

    Trigger pulse ?--------so what youre saying,is to set the trig at the drum head,then plug it into my recorder just to pick up the tap-or-pusle of the signal?
  18. pr0gr4m

    pr0gr4m Well-Known Member

  19. eddies880

    eddies880 Guest

  20. pr0gr4m

    pr0gr4m Well-Known Member

    I only have a D4 and it works perfectly for me. I would guess that the DM5 would be better because it is newer. It has more sounds of better quality. As a trigger machine, it's probably got a few more bells and whistles.

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