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I'm buying drum mics....

Discussion in 'Drums' started by imagineaudio, Mar 2, 2005.

  1. imagineaudio

    imagineaudio Active Member

    Nov 24, 2004
    I'm buying drum mics this month.....this is what I've decided on:

    Snare: sm57 X2
    Toms: Sennheiser e604 X3
    Kick: D112

    Should I be getting different mics?

    I still need OH's.......I don't know what to use for that. I don't have much room in the budget, will <gasp> samson's work ok? or some other cheap-o condensor?
  2. WRX07

    WRX07 Guest

    An SM81 is great for hi-hats and acoustic guitars. A later addition you might want to get is a couple of Sennheiser MD421's-they sound good on toms, basses, and sometimes kicks. A friend of mine uses AKG C1000's as overheads that he gets good results with. 57's and a D112 are good choices, but I haven't used those sennheisers. AKG 451's are very good OH's, but I think it may be out of your price range. Look at some lower end Audio Technicas or Rodes. I got an Audio Technica 3035 for a first mic, and it was great....never used it as an overhead though. I'm sorry I couldn't be more helpful.
  3. therecordingart

    therecordingart Well-Known Member

    Jul 28, 2004
    Myself....I wouldn't go cheap-o on OH's! They capture the entire kit and I use them as the "glue" for my entire drum sound.....the OH's hold all of the pieces (close mics) together. At least that is the way I have it in my head....there may be some people that say I'm an idiot.

    For OH's I use a cheap mic, but one that sounds good....Oktava MC012. You can get them for $100 each and sometimes GC ran a deal for buy one get one free!

    Other than that....the SM57 on a snare is a good choice whether you are on a budget or not. I've never used E604's, and the D112 is my favorite kick mic.

    This is probably going to sound crappy but I think the D112 and SM57 are going to be the mics that you'll never replace. Once you have extra cash you are probably going to replace the E604's for 421's and probably never use the E604's again. That is way I bought a whole bunch of SM57's instead of E604's when I had a tight mic budget. I knew that eventually I was going to be using something other than 57's on toms, but having a lot of 57's around isn't a bad thing because you can use them on anything with at least mediocre results. I knew that once I had my dream mic closet I'd have enough 57's as spare mics in case a band wanted to record live or to mix/match different sounds on different drums.

    This is my opinion of course.

    Happy shopping.....and never pay the price on the sticker. Stores are more than happy to give deals when they know someone is building a studio. They want your business!!!
  4. J-3

    J-3 Active Member

    Jul 20, 2004
    I'd drop the cash for 2 decent overheads and a kick mic. I think you'd be way a head. Get a 57 too if you can. I too use the hell out of MK012's and like them a lot. You just have to sift thru and get 2 good ones that sound similar. They arn't Neumann's but they'll do the job.

    I don't really like the D112 for kick anymore ( I still use mine though) It always sounds like a D112 to me no matter what your tracking. For toms I'm really loving the ATM 25's. I think i'm gonna pick up 4 more for all the toms, & kick or bass guitar etc. Love 'em!

    2 mk012's and a kick mic

    then a 57 for snare if you can

    then ATM 25's for toms/kick latter

    then 2 more 57's or nice condensors for rooms
    and your rockin! Oh yeah then it's on to nice pre's.....but you should'nt have to replace any mics except the OH's way down the road but they'll be good for hat, under snare , ac AND elec gtr etc.........

    good luck, have fun and watch for phase funk!!!
  5. Arrowfan

    Arrowfan Guest

    I definately agree with 2 nice overheads and a kick mic.

    Just pan the overheads L and R and you've got a surprisingly full drum kit sound. Toms and cymbals will stereo image very well. The resulting sound will definately stand taller than a mix-n-match combination of cheap close miking setups.

    I use:

    (2) C414 overheads (Studio Project B-1's are a decent cheap alternative)

    Audix D6 for kick

    For snare miking (can't hurt): Audix I5 or SM57 - you cam place mic *slightly angled* to include hihat , if desired
  6. DaveRunyan

    DaveRunyan Active Member

    Dec 13, 2004
    First.........Good overheads have become my best friend for drum set ups. I bounce between my SM 81s, ATM 3041s and my Rode NT 1000s for overheads. It really depends on the kit and what type of music it is.

    On another note I have 6 of those Sennheiser e604s and love them. Small and tough as hell. They will eventually get hit. They give a nice solid tone on most toms I have used them on. A crappy kit will sound crappy no matter what mics you use. When you get the cash to have good overheads AND good close mics they are a good choice in my opinion.
  7. RandomGuest

    RandomGuest Guest

    Feb 10, 2001
    drum mics

    1 large condenser mic (phantom power)--2 or 3 feet in front of the kit
    1 mic (Audix D6, AKG D112, you get the point) tight to the kick drum or inside
    1 mic as overheads (I use another condenser above the drummer)
    You could still use one mic on the snare but usally the OH condenser picks up the snare very well
    Or you could use 2 overhead mic's (one left one right)....regardless you shouldn't need more than 4 maybe 5 mic's to get a really awesome recording.
    Also try to get your hands on a high quality pre amp for each mic.
    Honestly, you could spend appox $600 on mic's and somehow manage to get ahold of a pre amp in the $2000 range (API, Great River, UA, Manley, whatever your looking for)
    And you will get an incredible, recording.
    But on the other hand if you spend $1800 (3 times the amount of what I am suggesting) on just mic's alone. And you use cheap pre's or just the regular compact mixer gain pots (used on Mackies, Allen & Heath, ect, ect.)
    Your results will not be worth running back to the forum to brag endlessly about the recording.
    My 2 cents
  8. I use

    akg d112
    sennheiser e604 (3)
    sm 57
    oktava mc012 (2)

    sometimes and oktava mkl2500 for the room or as an single overhead.

    Mainly cause that is all i have. I run them through a mackie board. Again all i have. Well actually i have a brick from groove tubes but i haver not figured out which 1 mic to use it on a kit.

    I have never been a huge fan of the kick sounds I get. and the snare usually sounds a little thin as well. the mc012's get a good sound from the cymbals but dont pick up the rest of the kit super well. if toms are tuned well to sound good in a room they usually sound pretty damn good with the e604's and just the mackie pres.

    i record alot of metal so i close mic everything but if i do light rock or something more mellow i try to use 1 overhead 1 kick and maybe a snare mic.
  9. Dave and Arrowfan are right on with the OH being the "glue" or the image of the drumset. I would say that 90% of drummers only need two good OH's and the kick and snare to sound really focused. While the toms mics are really just for post-edit punch on fills.

    I would buy two good matched condensors and a kick drum mic first, if drums were my main concern. Not only that, but if you are doing vocals and acoustic instruments you will have two good mics to cover those areas.

    If you are doing a lot of electric guitars and loud rock vocals then go with the Shure 57's or Sennheiser e609, since these mics can do the electric guitar/drum mic thing, as well as handle "loud ass" source material. :evil:

    Either way, first you are gonna need a kick drum mic, like an AKG D112, Audix D6 or Shure Beta 52.


    1 AKG D112 @ 199.99
    2 AKG C414 @ 799.99
    2 Shure SM57s or similar mic @ 89.99


    1 Shure Beta 52 @ 189.99
    2 Shure SM57s or similar mics @ 89.99
    1 Sennheiser e604 mics pack @ 329.99

    So one is cheaper but will sound like it...

    I personally run:

    1 Shure Beta 52 - kick
    3 Sennheiser e604 - toms
    1 Sennheiser e609 - snare top
    1 Shure Beta 56 - snare bottom
    2 Rode NT5 matched pair - OH's

    I eventually want a pair of Neumann U87s or AKG C12 VR's and a shitload of MD421s :wink: ...someday
  10. dustbro

    dustbro Guest

    If you DO end up going with cheap overheads... Check out a pair of AKG C1000's... probably less than $200 each. You'll be suprised with the sound. I'm not saying that I'm going to ditch my 451's when I'm making a record, but the c1000's really work nicely in a pinch.
  11. djrr3k

    djrr3k Guest

    On a budget. Try this...

    Kick Shure Beta 52 @ 189
    or Shure PG 52 @ 119 - I like this mic no matter what anyone says.

    Snare Shure SM57 @ 89

    Toms Senn. E604 @ 299 (for 3)

    OH Shure KSM 27 @ 299 (each)
  12. aksel

    aksel Guest

    of course OH"s are important, but if you don't have a good sounding room and just pick up the drums with OH's, you won't get a decent sound... even with some close miking on snare and kick.

    think of it : When you start mixing, you push the OH level, pan them, then get the kick and snare a little more present with close mikes...
    ...then you don't have enough toms... and the ambience still sucks, because you don't have a good sound tracking room...

    I think you should really focus on buying good preamps, and 3/4 sm57 ( or cheaper mikes ). then cheap OH's, then cheap kick mike ( 57 can do that if you have a good preamp.

    so :

    1x Sebatron 4000
    4x 57
    2x octavia / C1000 / or cheap t-bone from thomann.de
  13. imagineaudio

    imagineaudio Active Member

    Nov 24, 2004
    sorry i abandoned (sp?) my post....computer problems.......

    i havn't bought any mics yet, but I appreciate the suggestions...especially from askel, that seems the way to go...it makes a lot of sense. as far as OH's I have a k2 now and i imagine pairing it with one of the $200-300 rode condensors would be a fairly safe choice.....??

    I'm having trouble finding a preamp that will work in my set up (to be used as an "everything" pre)....maybe you guys could make some suggestions....

    I would like the pre to be versatile, delivering a pristine uncolored sound, but adjustable to be heavily coloured when appropriate.

    Looking for a tight low end dimension

    Needs to be 2ch with above average a/d conversion and s/pdif, adat connections

    budget under $2500, eq and/or dynamics a plus...
  14. aksel

    aksel Guest

    * sebatron VMP2000e 2 ch mic pre -> 1249$ (http://www.sebatron.com)

    * RME ADI 2 ad/da converter ( 600€ here in europe, should be about 600-700 $ )

    * You can still get some sm57's...
  15. TornadoTed

    TornadoTed Guest

    I'm lucky enough to have a great sounding room here and because of that I spent as much as I could on some overheads (Schoeps CMC6 bodies with MK21 capsules, £1000 second hand for a matched pair). It sounds fantastic with just the overheads and a little kick (D112 or ATM25) and snare (SM57). I always mic up the toms (MD421's) for fills but that isn't really neccessary. The best advice I can give is find the best room you can and take out a mobile rig and record there, it's extremely difficult to get a decent sound if the room is poor to begin with. You can get a great sound with 4 mics and 4 good pre amps in a nice room, I recommend the focusrite green dual pre amp, I've got 8 of them !!. It's so clean and you can pick them up for around £300 / $600 second hand. I used to use AKG C3000's for overheads but found them very coloured, a good alternative is the AT3031 which I found nice. Now I have the schoeps I tend to whack this on the HH or ride so it's still getting good use.
  16. imagineaudio

    imagineaudio Active Member

    Nov 24, 2004
    im not familiar with the focusrite green series, i was kind of starting to look at the ISA428, at 1500, i guess its about the same cost as 2 used dual greens.......what do you think as far as sound?

    has anyone used the aphex pre's? the fact that they have digital conversion built in has kind of attracted me and i've read some good stuff, im looking to take advantage of my 2 s/pdif ins on my interface, and hopefully gain another year or so out of it...

    so this is kinda what im thinking now....

    d112 and sm57 for kick and snare...
    i have a k2 that could be used for an overhead, given i could match it with a complementary mic...any suggestions on that?

    ...or would it make more sense to get a pair of SDC and leave the k2 in the case?

    i still don't think im much closer to making a desicion on OH's, but i am starting to put a list of mics together to go see if I can try out....
  17. sproll

    sproll Active Member

    Oct 7, 2004
    Myself, I still like the Audix mics.

    D2 on rack toms, D4 on floor toms, D6 on kick. In my opinion, I really like the D6 better than the D112. It seems to have more of a drum sound than all attack "click" like the D112. (Although both mics are excellent)

    Sm57 on snare, still like those.

    Overheads, I'm really pushing towards Studio Projects C4's. I like my ADX-50's, but Kurt thought the C4's were great. I'll have to try em out soon.
  18. TornadoTed

    TornadoTed Guest

    The Focusrite Green series date from around 1997. I don't know how they compare to the new ISA 428 as I haven't heard that unit. The Green range is essentially very similar in quality to the Red range but was build with surface mount components so they were cheaper to produce. They didn't really take off though as they were too expensive for project studios/home enthusiasts and pro studios tended to stick with the established Red range. I'm chuffed to bits though because you can pick them up for a song and they are fantastic, I've got 8 Dual pre amps and 2 EQ's and am always on the look out for more.
  19. housefukr

    housefukr Guest

    what about the Audix fusion set with a D6 on the kick, Sm57 on Snare, 2 TLM 103's for over head ran throught the Mackie 800r .... and should I be using a gate ?
  20. sproll

    sproll Active Member

    Oct 7, 2004
    Everything you listed sounds fine, except I havent tried the fusion mics on toms.

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