Need help: Drum recording with condenser mics

Discussion in 'Drums' started by jarjarbinks, Mar 17, 2012.

  1. jarjarbinks

    jarjarbinks Misa want to learn! Active Member

    Sep 27, 2010
    Hello experts,

    Im new to the world of drum recording and wondering about whether or not to keep using condenser mics. I find them brighter and more sensible to transients, hence picking up a cleaner sound, but when I use a lot of condensers together the madness begins. Bleeds mostly. Which make editing near to impossible.

    Would it be best to close mic every piece with dynamic mics? Can you give me some tips or recommendations?

    Basically Im using a 7 mic setup:
    1. M80 Close miking the hihat
    2. M80 on the snare.
    3 and 4: Two pencil overheads (MXL 604)
    5 and 6: Two MXL A55 mics, one on the bass drum and the other inbetween two toms
    7: An omni condenser inbetween the left and right crashes (which pick up some of the toms too).

    Drum set: Mapex Pro M series. Drum set Pieces:

    Bass Drum 22"
    3 toms
    Wodden snare
    2 crashes
    1 splash
    1 Ride

    Any ideas or recommendations are most welcome!!
  2. BobRogers

    BobRogers Well-Known Member

    Apr 4, 2006
    Blacksburg, VA
    if you are new to drum recording, then you definitely want to start out with fewer mics - regardless if it is your three condensers or the four dynamics (M80, A55).

    Start with one of your overheads positioned over the snare / maybe a bit toward the high hat. Move it around higher, lower, back, forth, side-to-side. If you want some ideas you might try this video (pay to play.) Once you have the first mic giving you as good a picture as possible add the second overhead. Try the recorderman method (essentially the same as Glyns Johns) for positioning the second mic. Then add the A55 on kick and an M80 on the snare. If you can't get a good sound with four mics, you won't get a good sound by adding mics. You can add more focused toms to a good overall picture of the set, but more mics almost always makes a bad sound worse. The omni mic that you are using is almost certainly a problem.
  3. Davedog

    Davedog Distinguished Member

    Dec 10, 2001
    Pacific NW
    Omni in an untreated area is a disaster waiting for the fuel to get moving.

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