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Tom mics

Discussion in 'Microphones' started by maintiger, Mar 25, 2004.

  1. maintiger

    maintiger Well-Known Member

    We are getting ready (in the next 2 weeks) to record our new band. Our drummer has a large drum kit . We'll be recording to a foxtex 24 track recorder on location (drums, bass, rhythm guitar, scratch vocals) then coming back and dumping the tracks to Digital performer to do guitar and vocal overdubs.

    I am trying to line up mics for this session in advance to get the best sound possible within our means. Our mics selection (on hand) consist of kick d112, we also have 6 57's, 4 oktava 319's, 2 u87's, 2 451's, a couple of groove tubes am11, an rode nt1, a rode K2 tube mic, an RCA D77- one sennheiser 421. This is also a double kick set so we are thinking of buying another d112 before the session for the other kick- The kit also has 4 toms. We could use 57's or the 4 oktava 319's on toms- anyone has used these befor for micing toms?

    Any suggestions will be appreciated. We'll be renting a recording space for the weekend as my current studio just won't acommodate live drums. We would like to be prepared with the right mics in advance to get the best results.
  2. The SM57s will definitely do the job. But, switching to a condenser has brought a more lively response, for me.

    If you have enough distance from the cymbals and snare, to cut bleed, try out the 451s and 319s. Larger diaphrams tend to pick up more bleed that could be out of phase to the overheads. But, they can sound good when done correctly.

    I've had great luck with CAD E-100s and Shure KSM-32s, which are both small diameter condensers. And, I've used a pair of NT-1000s as overheads. I even read, recently, that the Oktava MK-012s are great for overheads & snare (with the -10dB pad). I got a a pair from Guitar Center for $100 on special sale. They are no longer my beater mics.

    When you do mike up, try adding the u87 several feet bad from the kick... in addition to the d112, up close. That should get you a richer sounding kick.

    Good luck on your setup! Let us know how you do...
  3. Davedog

    Davedog Distinguished Member

    Xman...do you thinkthe material being recorded is going to need an intricate and close mic'd drum sound?Or is it going to be the groove oriented kind of wash you hear so much these days?Determining the direction beforehand is a huge step towards achieving a quality sound.Another question is this...'How often are you going to be using the double kicks?'Sometimes, the songs can be cut using a minimum of pieces to the kit.This eliminates a bunch of sympathetic tuning issues right off the top and of course decreases the number of mics needed to accomplish your preset goals.As a Producer, I always have a gameplan and stick to it throughout the sessions.It insures a simpler route at mix to the sound I want to get.Right now,for me, everything in a drum sound is about space.There can be a LOT of drumming but if theres no definition then theres just a lot of noise.This can be accomplished with a minimum of close mics and then a number of environment mics placed in the areas where your ears tell you it sounds the best.A good walkthrough of your area without any gear with only a boombox for a source will tell you volumes about the space.This will help when you bring in the gear and start your placement....especially the drums.
  4. djui5

    djui5 Guest

    Sennheiser 421's for toms....defacto tom mic...
  5. idiophone

    idiophone Guest

    People diss the SM57 for toms, but I rather like that sound.

    Of course, 421s - you can never have too many. Great on kick, guitars, toms, even the occasional vocals.

    414s are great, but you'll get cymbal wash out the yin yang, and if the tom isn't a good-quality maple tom with good heads that's well-tuned, you're wasting your time.
  6. RecorderMan

    RecorderMan Distinguished Member

    Kick 1 D 112
    Kick 2 D 112
    Snare Top sm 57
    Snare Bottom sm 57
    Tom 1 sm 57
    Tom 2 sm 57
    Tom 3 sm 57
    Tom 4 sm 57
    OH's U87's
    hat 451 w/ pad and HPF
    ride 421
    Proximity D77

    First, go ahead and get the other D112. When you get to 1/16's on the kicks you're going to want a matched sound between the kicks. 87's on the OH's because they're the most neutral, full-range pair you have, and you usually want OH mic's that are forgiving in the midrange ..... especially with digital. Place these correctly- and not just as cymbal mics - and you'll capture the whole kit. This (the OH's) is where you'll get your "air" on the kit. Record the OH's with out EQ and you can sculpt when you mix. 57's on snare (top and bottom) and all the toms. You have enough to cover the hole kit (again... consistency). mixing will be much easier if you have a consistent frequency to find and sculpt by using the same mic on all the toms. Hat; 451 w/pad. Ride gets the 421. The "air" of the ride will still be in the OH's...but this will give you some weight for the times he plays it. If you allocate each mic to a track, you can later eliminate tracks that don't get used on any particular song. For the ribbon...try an over the right shoulder proximity mic aiming down roughly at a spot between the kick and snare.
  7. maintiger

    maintiger Well-Known Member

    hey guys, thanks for all he replies, gives me food for tought, this is great! We've been rehearsing with the band in my studio using my yamaha electronic kit, so part of the problem is that I haven't even seen the new drummers kit- He has a nice maple kit (I think Gretsch, we'll find out tomorrow for sure!) Yeah, tomorrow we are having our first reheasal with the real drums and all the big amps in a rehearsal space so this will be interesting. I will post my findings and get some more good advice for you guys for the recording- you guys are great!
  8. maintiger

    maintiger Well-Known Member

    Oh yeah, and nobody mentioned the 4 oktava's 319 we have useful- (or the rode K2 tube mic) should I not even take them along?
    Another thing, before I forget- we have 1 8ch lucid AD and 4 channels of rosetta AD so we have only 12 channels of quality AD conversion going in the 24 trck fostek machine- In preamps we have 4 ch of sytek, 2ch of grace, 4 rane ms1's, and 24 channels of yamaha mla7's. Since the drums is the critical part of the planned recording we'll give it priority with the better preamps and the good ad conversion. (Bass too, if possible), keys, rhythm guitar, lead and vocals will probably just go through the mla7's straight into the fostex as we can do overdubs later and replace the tracks when we dump the tracks into my mac and Digital performer in my studio.

    We are also considering renting a few more channels of quality preamps as needed when the time comes. Anything I'm missin here? Hey Dadog, I will know more after Saturday how the kit sound but I am thiking I want to mic all the drums, recorder man posted a good summary of the mics and where to use them- (I'll buy another D112) thanks guys!
  9. Davedog

    Davedog Distinguished Member

    I'd be foolish not to agree with the Recorderman's take on the mics.This very much parallels my own feelings on this.57's just sound great on toms and the snare....be sure and try the top snare mic at the head aimed across it and whatever you do if you mic top and bottom try and use two pres with phase switches....As for you mentioning the 319's...I would take them as they have a decent tonality and can be added in as a room mic.The 77 should sound great as the room mic but you're gonna need something with a lot of clean gain on it to get it up there ....stick a 319 up...try it high and behind the drummer...Ilike their tones....Absolutely the 87's for overheads...This was my rig of choice for a number of years and they never failed to produce incredible sounds used this way...Its my opinion that this is the best use of this particular mic.In the past when I did double kick sets, I would also place a mic between the kicks on the outside of the drums as well as the mics inside.It wasnt a track that always got saved but it did produce some interesting effects....Try your AM11 there and pad the crap out of it.Just sit it in a shorty stand facing the drummer and between the kicks.Its only going to be for presence anyway.But try it and tell me if its something you find usefull.Keep us posted on this session....it sounds interesting
  10. maintiger

    maintiger Well-Known Member

    Rehearsed with the band this saturday with the real drums- turned out that it wasn't a double kick drum, just that he had double pedal! I don't have to buy another d112 after all! Nice sounding Gretsh maple set with 4 toms and great ziljian cymbals- The drummer doesn't quite have to songs down yet so we won't be recording probaly for 2 or 3 more weeks- will keep you posted and thanks! :mrgreen:
  11. Johnson Cabasa

    Johnson Cabasa Active Member

    two kick drums and a buncha toms are great live, for recording cut it back to one kick drum with a double kick pedal if it's really necessary for the drummer to play 8th notes

    two toms and a floor max, or your going to hve all kinds of phase problems with a kit that big unless you have a couple of days and a bunch of experience setting up large drum kits
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