Drums @ home - 4 mic technique

Discussion in 'Drums' started by m4jk3l, Mar 29, 2010.

  1. m4jk3l

    m4jk3l Guest


    I am reading, listening to other people records and trying to choose the best setup for my band for recording drums.

    I have presonus firestudio project and SM57 mic. I was considering Shure Beta 52 for bass drum and for overheads I can buy used pair of sm81. SM57 would go for snare.

    Can this setup work fine or I should forgot about good results? The main question is about toms sound recorded with overheads only.

    PS. We play rock/hard rock.

    Forgot to add: we have 3 toms in our drum set.
  2. soapfloats

    soapfloats Well-Known Member

    Aug 28, 2008
    Cincinnati, OH
    Home Page:
    With those mics, if you spend a lot of time playing with the placement of the OHs, you will be fine.
    I too am concerned w/ getting enough/accurate toms from OH mics w/ harder bands. In this case I go ahead and mic the toms just in case...
    But I'm guessing you don't have that option, and I've learned w/ well placed OHs, it's not really a problem.
  3. Davedog

    Davedog Distinguished Member

    Dec 10, 2001
    Pacific NW

    I concur....and the sound from the 81's is very favorable towards harder edged music.
  4. MorMez

    MorMez Active Member

    Mar 24, 2010
    Drum Recording

    First, you can certainly get great drum sounds with only 4 mics.
    As others have said, OH placement is key - and that is always the case, even if you are using more mics.
    With just the OH mics, the toms would still lack some of the body and presence you want.

    There are some cool production tricks you can use to make up for that and get the toms to sound amazing.
    Listen to the drums sounds here- Drum Recording – How to Get Great Drum Sounds (Part 1) - EarsandGears.com
    They were recorded with 4 mics.

    This is the first segment on how to get great drum sounds with a few mics, right in your home.
    We'll be getting to the subject of toms very soon, and what tools you can use to get amazing sounds.
  5. m4jk3l

    m4jk3l Guest

    Ye, for sure we will buy mics for toms, but not fast, cause we already made some gear investments. Maybe it will be a good time to try different placing and experimenting with 4 mics and to "learn" accoustics in our room. Thanks for help ;)
  6. soapfloats

    soapfloats Well-Known Member

    Aug 28, 2008
    Cincinnati, OH
    Home Page:
    That's the right way to think! Keep that mindset and you'll do just fine. :biggrin:

    Use what you have, and learn it.
    When you're ready for more mics/channels, you'll have a good practical base of knowledge and skills - and mics you can use for life (if you take care of them)!

    Best of luck, and let us know how things go.

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