overhead drum mics recomendations?

Discussion in 'Room & Overhead' started by secondflooreast1, Jan 26, 2011.

  1. BassLiK

    BassLiK Active Member

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    Oct 25, 2010
    I'm still a noob and I truly rely on pros like you to kick me a bone, and it sure pays off cause I will take advantage of it and make the suggested changes before I let the client hear it and (POW), THEY ARE STOKED.

    I also listened to other tracks on Ty's site and I hear the same thing from the kick drum on other tunes?, I agree it has to be his room too.

    I'm looking to get the new UA Apollo with the quad processor audiokid, it will big a big improvement over my digi003 for sure, not to mention to be able to insert while tracking 1176's (WHEW), I'm salavating here.
     
  2. audiokid

    audiokid Chris Well-Known Member

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    We are only as good as our last mix. My last one was pretty good but I was using previously smashed stems. If we could all start with the perfect recording in the perfect room, wow.

    cool, I'm excited to read your comments on it. Maybe even post some tracks one day? !! Have you watched any of the tutorials from Fab Dupont ( OTHERING - pureMix Online Tutorials: Mixing, Recording, Producing Audio and Music ) there are some free ones in there that are great. He's using the Apollo a lot now.
    We have a few members here that just got one. No one has shared any info though.
     
  3. BassLiK

    BassLiK Active Member

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    Oct 25, 2010
    Yea I've seen most videos, I actually got to mess with one last Sunday at a friends studio who bought one and I was blown away. We did a importu improv just to hear back what it sounded like and I will post it when he sends it to me. HAPPY NEW YEAR EVERYONE
     
  4. tifftunes

    tifftunes Active Member

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    L.A.
    My favorite kit OH mics are:

    EV RE200 (single OH or in pairs - placement is another story!)
    Neumann TLM193 (again single or paired)
    Shure KSM44 (single or pairs)

    There are many far less expensive microphones (condenser and non) that will give great results! It has more to do with the placement, room, and most of all the talent being recorded.

    There really aren't any mics that sound bad when the talent is good!
     
  5. RemyRAD

    RemyRAD Member

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    Sep 26, 2005
    Mile everybody is expressing their favorite brands of microphones... I'm only going to talk about the different types. And reasons that might influence your decisions?

    In nice acoustic surroundings, every microphone sounds good. Different acoustics and different surroundings require different microphone choices. Small capsule condenser microphones sound much better where acoustics are less than perfect. Whatever acoustic aberrations exist are generally multiplied the larger the condenser capsule gets. Large diaphragm condenser microphones all have miserable off axis response and sound. Making some of the best microphones truly horrible sounding. So small diaphragm condenser microphones, regardless of cost or quality, are a solid choice.

    So too are ribbon microphones. While they have a beautiful smooth warm sound with a slightly rolled off high-end, they are much faster and more accurate. They work on the velocity of the sound and not the pressure. Completely different concept from any other microphone technologies, of which, professionally, we generally use, only dynamic microphones and condenser microphones along with ribbon microphones. We don't use carbon anymore and early will use a crystal microphone pick-up perhaps for harmonica? Or FBI laser microphones. Though we do use a lot of scientific test calibration microphones in music applications which are all generally small diaphragm permanently polarized condenser microphones. And ribbon microphones are inherently extremely fragile. You'd never want to take them outside nor ever blow into them directly. They get killed real easy that way. Ringo's drum set of the Beatles used a single Cole's ribbon microphone overtop the drum set. And a Neumann 47 (A $7000 microphone today, for an original) on the bass drum. And that was a big no-no back at Abbey Road/EMI that he would have been fired for doing. But because those four mop head guys were doing so well on the charts, they all figured, what the heck? So he wasn't fired for that. But that's all they had lying around the studio back then. And you know how that all ended up sounding? Simply freakin' fabulous. Two microphones. Not many folks do it quite just that way anymore. Instead you use a bunch of cheap 57's and they also sound freakin' fabulous! And that's what you hear on most rock 'n roll recordings you like to listen to.

    So actually, even 57's for overheads, work out quite well. They don't quite have the same zing as condenser microphones have but they still have a lot of presence and color and you could still use them as overheads. No big whoop. In fact they may get you closer sounding to that Ringo drum set then would condenser microphones. In fact I can guarantee it.

    Watch late-night TV shows and you will see 414's for all of the drum overheads. The 214 it would sound the same and and save you some bucks. It has only a single cardioid polar pattern as opposed to 3-5 different polar patterns that the 414 and other dual diaphragm condenser microphones have the ability to do. But they're not using them that way, when you see them as overheads on the drum set. They're only cardioid then. Again though, that is a better acoustic environment than your average home studio will sound like. So in that respect, the small diaphragm condenser microphones are a no-brainer. Kind of like me. No-brainer. (Brain surgery seven years ago)

    I like my SM-81 SHURE's or my Neumann 86's, my former 84's, AKG 451 (with the -20 DB screw on pads), in tight compromised acoustical spaces. Those are all small diaphragm condenser microphones.

    When I have the cubic footage, 414's, 87's, 67's were acoustics get a chance to get up and walk around a bit. Which are large diaphragm condenser microphones.

    In other specialized applications and different musical genres such as jazz or country, I rather like the ribbons. Mine cost $1500-$700 respectively but you can get good Chinese ones starting around $160 each. And they are just a whole different animal altogether sounding than any dynamic or condenser microphones. And in another respect, they are neither ever in phase or out of phase because they are always 90° or 270° different in phase from any dynamic or condenser microphone. And this can work for you in other bad acoustics surroundings. And also because you will generally find ribbon microphones to only be figure of 8 polar patterns or, cardioid. Which are only directional from one direction. Figure of 8 are directional front and back and dead on its sides. So that also provides some reflected acoustic pickup that is actually 180° out of phase from the direction in which the microphone is actually picking up the drum sound. And that works for you differently as well.

    So there is no one best to use but there are those that are better to use under certain conditions than that of others. And for which you must understand the differences to get good at this stuff. As said, it takes years and a lot of listening of comparative things. Otherwise, how are you supposed to know what to use?

    My specialty is in the capture and live broadcast of musical events under some dreadful acoustical conditions, quite often. Other places and spaces can be magical sounding. Carnegie Hall, the Kennedy Center are places where I have recorded where anything and everything works well.

    Bob's charcoal grill and bar ain't going to offer up the same kind of recording procedure. That's for sure. And where the cheap microphones will really shine like the 57's/58's, 421's, D-5 & 6 all that stuff. And the condenser microphones sound like crap. No matter how costly. And I've got to costly ones it don't make no difference. They are bad in those environments. Most of the time. Or you just wouldn't want to get one broken by a wayward flying drumstick? They cost too much. Not the drumsticks! LOL. So sometimes I'll put up those $80 each large diaphragm condenser microphones from China instead of my $3000 + 87's. And I can still get similar results when I want a large diaphragm condenser sound or the acoustics are good. So I really don't mind using the $80 Chinese imitations. They save me money and they do the job. Albeit not with the same luscious sound. But they work and you can use them.

    This has been a long thread. We now return you to our regularly scheduled program.
    Mx. Remy Ann David
     
  6. Matt Hepworth

    Matt Hepworth Active Member

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    414 ULS' as an all rounder, pair of GT Model 1's for rock, and MC012's on a budget. Off a budget KM84's.
     
  7. Paul999

    Paul999 Active Member

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    Remy's previous post on this is fabulous and I would recommend and person starting out read and re-read it until they get it. My recording space is pretty good sounding and thanks to a ton of new treatment I am really digging it. I use 57's almost exclusively as my ovheads in my very large live room. When I sold my Km84’s because they weren't delivering what I wanted I used 57's in until I could decided what new overheads I wanted. I was looking at ribbon options. This was two years ago and I have tracked and mixed a ton of genre's and full bands live off the floor as well as just plain drum sessions. I love them in my studio! With a nice pre amp and the right distance from the kit(further is usually better). They sound detailed and the low mids are hefty. Pulling out some 700 and 2-3k will add sparkle.

    It is very tough for me to spend $2500 on some royers when an Sm57 will get me great results and possibly just a sideways move. I am at the point were I will be trying some ribbons against my current arsenal in a while. Who knows I may recant everything but make no mistake world class overhead sound can happen with $200 worth of mics.

    Most commonly I use ORTF.
     
  8. audiokid

    audiokid Chris Well-Known Member

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    Ha, Paul, I've been bragging about you. You are back! good to read this stuff. Although, I love my royers like my wife. The idea is space and some delay between that main kit and overheads. It sounds like you are getting that right on! And who needs all the extra sibilance and sub freq for that! Remy has that one pinned.
     
  9. Paul999

    Paul999 Active Member

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    Ha! Very flattering! I am excited about shooting out royers against 57s on overheads and guitars in my studio on my gear. It'll be a little while before I do because I am wrapping up endless projects right now.
     
  10. kmetal

    kmetal Kyle P. Gushue Well-Known Member

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    AT 3035's are what i use regularly on OH. i wouldn't call them 'fantastic' but they aren't bad, they tend to have a bit more hype in the upper range than the 20 yr old 414-ulx's which get assigned to the room. fwiw, i liked the sm 81's better in that room on the house kit.
     
  11. Ty Ford

    Ty Ford Yes, that's a wall of vinyl in the background. Active Member

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    We were recording a live performance to a TASCAM 24 track HD recorder for a CD a few years back. I think the board was a soundcraft. I brought along a couple of extra mics, just in case; a pair of C414 BULS and a pair of Schoeps CMC641 with a stereo mic bracket. The live sound crew ran out of SM57 and SM58 by the time they go to the drum overheads. I used the Schoeps.

    Later, after I got the tracks back from the recording, I was labeling tracks in Pro Tools by listening to each track......guitar cab, kick, snare, huh? why does this mic sound so good? Oh! It's one of the Schoeps OH mics. Next to is was....another very nice sounding track...the other Schoeps OH. Then back to your regularly scheduled program of typically peaky SM57 and SM58.

    Regards,

    Ty Ford
     
  12. Davedog

    Davedog Distinguished Member

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    Pacific NW
    No matter what mic is chosen or what preamp, SPACE is the key to drums. Height and pure cubic footage.
     
  13. DonnyThompson

    DonnyThompson Well-Known Member

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    Having a nice sounding kit to begin with being played by a good drummer doesn't hurt either. ;)
     
  14. Mario-C.

    Mario-C. Active Member

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    I've had great luck with the Royer Stereo ribbon mic, great setreo image and sounds really nice, tames all that cymbal harshness very well
     
  15. BassLiK

    BassLiK Active Member

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    Oct 25, 2010
    These are fantastic mics.
    SHure KSM32's, as well as other sources, Now I'm saving up for a Pacifica PRE and I'm off to the races.
    The Shure KSM32: A Love Story - YouTube

    Chris records all over the world, in the best studios and has access to every mic conceived, but still chooses the KSM's for overheads. I truly dig the vibe with the faders pushed up.
     
  16. audiokid

    audiokid Chris Well-Known Member

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    Thats a really good "chat" on these by Chris. I want them indeed! Thanks for posting this (y)
     
  17. BassLiK

    BassLiK Active Member

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    Oct 25, 2010
    Tha't's the least I can do, especially for you helping me decide on the KH120's (SWEET), man I surprised more folks haven't jumnped on them yet?

    Have a great weekend all.
     
  18. Ustas

    Ustas Active Member

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    Mar 2, 2013
    Location:
    Moscow region, Russia
    DPA 4011 vs AKG 414 vs Royer vs Elation KM 201, & D112 vs Elation KM 202 vs Audix D6

    There is a very evenly played the drum tracks.
    Overheads mics ( 4 matched stereo pairs) and kick (3 mics) drum mics - comparison.


    Writing a good drum room, drums - Yamaha Recording custom
    Many thanks for MMS studio in Moscow.
    http://mms-records.ru/source/



    Comparison with the names of microphones or "blindly"?.

    Tell me, you will be interested listen to comparative files: with name, or no-name mics?
     
  19. Kurt Foster

    Kurt Foster Distinguished Member

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    a good room can really make the difference although i did some really good sounding stuff in an iso booth that was 6 by 8 by 9 feet and lined with soundboard and acoustic foam and a carpet on the floor (can you say dead?). it was the quintessential dry '70's drum sound. it's really about golden ratios and room modes when you are designing / building booths and recording rooms.

    just stay away from the current crop of Indochinese / Asian / Australian crap.

    ummm, sorry; RANT TIME

    I've had it up to here and back with all this 57 / 58 noise.

    57's/58's are great pa mics. wonderful for vocals in a live setting, great for snare, sometimes toms, kick, often for guitar amps live or in the studio. you can pound nails with them and they will keep coming back for more. but i think they suck for ohs or hats.

    i can only guess / suppose some people have gone deaf in their old age and they need that nasty "presence" peak (all the 5 k you could want) so they can hear the cymbals as the reason anyone would recommend them for cymbals of any kind. cymbals & hats contain information over 15k. 57's/58's roll off at 15k. using a 57/58 for cymbals is basically putting a low pass filter on the ohs. now if that's what you want ... fine. but why would you want to do that? it's not like there's a lot of competition for the top octave.

    you want smooth? get a ribbon. you want to hear a cymbal full range, silk and with all the nuances of attack? for that you need condensers (actually capacitor mics) .... dynamics like a 57 with tons of mass in the diaphragm are way too slow and sluggish imho. i prefer sd condenser (actually capacitor mics) ... btw, nothing personal intended. (rant over)


    and now, back to our regular broadcast;


    my preference for ohs is old AKG C451s, AKG 460's, atm 4033's, 414's (the older, the better) vintage Neumman KM83s or 84's or (nice) u87's of any vintage / flavor (if i want to get a lot of the room).

    when time and budget dictates for a really big sound with lots of control at mix, i will use u87s as room mics several feet in front of the kit, the 451's overhead and on the hats while placing the 4033's (a real fave of mine for many things, i think they are highly underrated) around the kit.

    then again a ribbon or two overhead and a LD condenser a few feet in front of the kit, mixed in mono ala' Beatles / Stones can sound just as good .... it really depends of what you are trying to achieve.

    if you are really on the cheep get a pair of KEL HM-1's and do the Beatles / Stones thing. i love those things. to my ear they sound very close to a U87ai. i tried them side by side and there was very little difference other than the HM-1s don't pick up as much room ambiance as an 87, which makes sense as they are really mid size diaphragms.
     
  20. Ustas

    Ustas Active Member

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    Kurt Foster, as they say in Russia - ППКС, which means - subscribe to every word about 57/58 for ohs.
    But the vintage (and new too) U87 not silk and clear, they have BIG NOSE around lowest middle. Course, It's not BIG problem if you have good eq and the ear, one ore more
     

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