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Figure of Eight micing on tom-toms

Discussion in 'Drums' started by nuclearmoon, Jun 18, 2003.

  1. nuclearmoon

    nuclearmoon Guest

    Hey guys, I'm new here I hope this question isn't too dumb. When using a mic like the 414s in figure of eight on toms, how does the signal get split, or does it at all? Is there a "matrix" box involved? I will be using a Mackie 8bus and Pro Tools. Again please forgive my ignorance on the subject, I am a neophite when it comes to micing drums in a real live studio, but very eager to learn. Thanks.
  2. jdier

    jdier Active Member

    I am not sure I am right, but with my C3 on figure 8 it does not get split. Imagine two regular mics with their cords spliced together prior to reaching your board... that is what you have. You will not be able to split them.

    Hope I am right, and I hope this helps.

  3. Kurt Foster

    Kurt Foster Distinguished Member

    On a 414 there are 2 diaphragms. How the output of those 2 diaphragms is combined is what derives the pickup pattern.
  4. vinniesrs

    vinniesrs Active Member

    With microphones, the only signal split I am aware of is in a true stereo mic. This mic is designed with two separate mics inside, positioned just right to avoid phase problems, and deliver a stereo reproduction of sound.
    For mics other than stereo ones, the "pickup patterns" cardioid, omni, hypercardioid, and figure 8, are indicator of the mic's feild of "veiw". A figure 8 mic will send only one signal to the board, and it will derive that signal from the front, and rear of the mic. Omni's from all over, and cardioid in a heart shape in front of the mic. All mics work like this, and good ones(like the 414)have diagrams which show the areas of pickup, and the variance in frequency response off-axis.

    I am not sure that a figure 8 is the best way to mic toms. You may find that mic a little more handy as an overhead in figure 8.
    If you do mic the toms with it,(414 sounds great)
    Then I would suggest cardioid or hypercardioid, depending on what other instruments you hear with the mic. If you are switching patterns, then be mindful of the difference in gain from one setting to the next.

    Hope this helps you out. :tu:
  5. nuclearmoon

    nuclearmoon Guest

    Gotcha! I think the whole figure of eight/two diaphragm idea had me confused. Thanks Kurt for clarifing that for me. Sometimes its nice to bounce stupid ideas off others to realize your mistakes. So if I take two 414s in cardiod, that should work well for the mounted toms? What are your suggestions for the floor tom? This is a university's studio so I am limited to their mic locker, but they do have a few 414s, a c3000b, and a couple of U87s.....I can get a D112, 58s and 57s from a friend.........any suggestions on what to use to mic the top of the snare? I may be able to rent/borrow it if it isn't too vintage or pricey. And BTW thanks for all the help fellas and I'm very glad I've signed up here!!!
  6. vinniesrs

    vinniesrs Active Member

    Do they have any sennheiser 421's? These work great for toms. Also if you want a tight sounding kick, a 421 does the trick. Also the 57's will work o.k. on toms, and snare top, and snare bottom. Use the 414's on overhead, and hats first. Or, if you want, try the u87 and see if you like it. For simplicity, stick with one overhead mic. If you want to use two, for stereo, Cross the two together at a 45* angle with the diaphragms side by side. If you decide to use the 414's on the toms, you could also use the c3000 as an ovehead, although I wouldn't try it on the toms, the other mics(except the u87) can handle higher spl's.
    Good luck! :D
  7. jdier

    jdier Active Member

    I have been having great luck with just 4 mics on kit. If I had your mics and wanted to track kit the way I have been I would put the 414's overhead, One directly over the snare in cartiod pattern pointed right at the center of the snare about 3' up, another over the drummers right shoulder pointed at the beater of the kick. I try to make sure each mic is equa-distant to both the kick and the snare then I test them out. When you listen to them, pan them hard right and left, if you have them set right, the snare and the kick should be dead center and the rest of the kit should be a nice stereo mix.

    I would then take the 112 and put it on the kick. Then the 57 on the snare.

    I use the 112 with some compression to fill out the bottom end and provide some punch for the kick. Then 57 on the snare for reverb, I have been running it pretty low in the mix with a 100% wet small drum room reverb on it.

    I read this method from one of these sites and tried it assuming it would not work. I have been pretty blown away.

    Hope this helps.

  8. jdier

    jdier Active Member

    Uhhh, I just found where I ripped this idea off from:

    (Dead Link Removed)

    The post by recorderman is the one that I used as a starting point.

    It is completely rocking.
  9. Kurt Foster

    Kurt Foster Distinguished Member

    Assuming you have enough inputs... D112 and a U87 on the kick. D112 inside, u87 outside four inches off the head at a 45 degree angle in cardioid pattern. You may need to use the -10dB pad. Put a moving blanket over the kick drum and the 87 if possible.

    Snare 57
    Overhead and hat 414s

    Toms 414's and or U87 (on the floor tom).
  10. Doublehelix

    Doublehelix Well-Known Member

    I think you meant "90* angle" didn't you? That is the standard configuration for an x/y coincindent stereo pair...
  11. Davedog

    Davedog Distinguished Member

    If you have two U87's I would use these as the overheads...use the 414's one out in front of the rack toms about 18" and the other on the floor tom same angle and distance...D112 in the kick, Sm57 on the snare and if you're in a controlled room,and theres another LDC available I would mic the room....

    This gives you a huge variety of tonal colors and sounds to choose from at mix.You may wind up only using the overs and the kick but with this setup you have a lot of options and thats what tracking is all about.The room mic will give you size to the drums that you wont get with any sort of effect and can be astounding if the proper spot in the room is found. good luck
  12. vinniesrs

    vinniesrs Active Member

    If you want to use two, for stereo, Cross the two together at a 45* angle with the diaphragms side by side.

    I think you meant "90* angle" didn't you? That is the standard configuration for an x/y coincindent stereo pair...

    Yeah. oops. I did mean 90*. :c:
  13. anonymous

    anonymous Guests

    Contrary to the apparently consensus opinion, the 414 is a fabulous mic for toms (if you have an EB version, even better). It's one of my "secret weapons" for a great drum sound. Notice that little switch that says (-20)? That's a 20 dB pad, use of which makes it more than able to handle close mic'ing of toms. Those who think it can't handle the SPL probably forgot to engage the pad.

    On most kits, the cardioid would be the preferred pattern, since there are usually cymbals above the toms that would be picked up strongly by figure-of-eight, hyper-cardioid, or omni.

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