Preventing Hi-Hat Leakage

Discussion in 'Hi-Hats' started by AlphaPigi, Apr 20, 2005.

  1. AlphaPigi

    AlphaPigi Guest

    If I mike a snare with say an sm 57 and i use a dish like object to cover the rear end of the microphone, will most of the high frequency leakage from the hi hats get cancelled out due to the dish like obstruction.
  2. THeBLueROom

    THeBLueROom Active Member

    Jan 15, 2005
    could work. also, put the null side of the mic pointing towards the hihat, that will minimize bleed as well.
  3. RAIN0707

    RAIN0707 Guest

    What Blue said about the null point is the key factor. There will still be some leakage of course since no mic has a true 100% null point (or at least no mic I have tried) but it will be a manageable amount that you can "Gate out" or won't be heard during the snare hits. Auralex has an expander kit that has mini baffles that you can place behind mics while miking your drum kit. Haven't tried them yet but they are like $40.00 for a set. Might be worth the experiment...
  4. therecordingart

    therecordingart Well-Known Member

    Jul 28, 2004
    I use the Auralex product on my mics and it works pretty well. The main key is to have the butt of the 57 pointing at the hi-hat.
  5. Kswiss

    Kswiss Guest

    i think it takes some experimentation.... i've found with players that have the hats closer to the snare, sometimes, the bleed comes from the hats bouncing off the snare head into the mic.... the best way is to have someone move it around while you listen until you can get a good compromise between spill from the hats and tone from the drum.....As long as you can get it pretty decent you can noisegate/expand or whatever....

  6. inLoco

    inLoco Active Member

    Jul 25, 2004
    creepy man :?
  7. jonnyc

    jonnyc Well-Known Member

    Apr 21, 2005
    I've recently had amazing succes putting a gate plug in over the snare. Now all I get is the attack of the snare with a smidge of decay and it sounds so tight.
  8. karbomusic

    karbomusic Active Member

    Apr 19, 2005
    Charlotte, NC
    The Inverse Square Law

    Though many times the drum setup prevents this, you can fix this problem at times by moving snare mic to the opposite side of the snare (near the rack toms) if there is room. A couple of things come into play here:

    1. With the back of the mic sometimes literally 1 or 2 inches from the hat the rejection of the cardoid pattern has pretty much no advantage. Due to the incredibly small distance from the hat, the sound from the hat more than overpowers any rejection you hope to get via the placement of the mic.

    2. The is especially true since the true rejection point of a cardiod is 180 degrees from the mic element (where the xlr cable plugs in) and in many cases the hat is not even in this "node" since the mic is longer than the distance of the hat from the snare.. In other words you end up with the mic "kindof" in the rejection node. Unless your using something real small. This example is taking a sm57 into consideration...

    3. The inverse square law can be a big help here.... IF you can reposition the snare mic to the other side of the drum you have greatly increased the distance from the hat to the mic regardless of the fact that the hat is no longer in the rejection node of the mic (but the distance of the mic from the snare is the same).

    In addition, at such close distances the snare mic will be picking up some of the more omnidirecitonal lower frequences coming from the hat etc. and will be picked up anyway. Since it takes more power/energy to move lower frequences across a distance then it is even easier to get rid of the lower hat freqencies by increasing the distance from the hat.

    The inverse square law says that for every doubling of the distance from a sound source (offending hi hat) you lose 6db of loudness or volume.

    Just to embellish a little lets say the back of the mic is a mere 1 inch from the hat then you move to the other side of the snare (Now about 14-16 inches from the hat)...

    Now just do a little math here: increasing from 1 inch to 2 = -6db then 2 inches to 4 = another -6db, 4 to 8 another -6db and finally 8-16" with yet another -6db... so add it up and you have just cut the volume of the hat by 24db by doing nothing more than moving the mic. The distance to the snare head is still unchanged so the hat is now 24db lower than it was on the snare track. That equates to a little less than 2 1/2 times quieter than it was.

    Again this is not always possible, and like anything it just doesn't work sometimes, but the difference in volume doing this can be much more than the mere rejection from the back of the mic as well as another option you can try if available. Especially, since the shape of a cardoid pattern and its amount of rejection is "per frequency". The cardiod diagram you are used to seeing is only part of the story as the pattern is completely different at 250Hz vs 8k etc.

    Just some food for though...

    Best regards-

  9. Davedog

    Davedog Well-Known Member

    Dec 10, 2001
    Pacific NW
    Great post Karbo....

    Then theres the 'other' end of this problem.....Use a drummer who knows how to make the trap kit work perfectly.In this case, bleed is your friend.....
  10. EricK

    EricK Guest

    Get the drummer to raise the hi-hat on its stand and move it back a little. This is the number one problem I see with not-so-experienced drummers. They can reach for it a bit. This will make a huge difference. Also, inexperienced drummers often will hammer the hat while going fairly light on the snare. Get them to reverse that. Lighten up on the hat and start crackin' that snare.
  11. karbomusic

    karbomusic Active Member

    Apr 19, 2005
    Charlotte, NC
    Couldn't agree more!

  12. I have a few copies of a sign that I put up for drummers wherever they may end up looking that reads "Hit the WHITE THINGS HARD and the SHINY THINGS SOFT!"
  13. EricK

    EricK Guest

    That's exactly it! It's not too hard to understand. :lol:
  14. Reggie

    Reggie Well-Known Member

    Dec 20, 2004
    That is good; I might have to make up some signs like that for this weekend. Has the phrased been ®'d or ©'d or ™'d or is it open for public use? :)
  15. fubar1217

    fubar1217 Guest

    Well...that's IF you have a drummer that can alter how he hits. I personally bash on cymbals in live situations. Then again, I just hit everything hard! I'd like to think I can back off in recording situations. But I know a lot of drummers just kinda set in their ways about things and don't know *how* to control dynamics (these usually aren't the guys getting session work obviously). But keep in mind, it's easier to tell someone to alter their dynamics than it is to actually do it.

    Now back on topic. I've seen a few engineers take some of the egg crate type foam, cut a 7"x7" square and cut a hole in the middle and put the sm57 through that hole to about where the first two or three inches of the mic sticks through. Seemed to work pretty good.
  16. killersoundz

    killersoundz Guest

    An engineer thats picky about this topic would absolutely love my kit. My hi-hats are about a mile away from my snare. Well, pretty far, and I play with them reasonably high, not no Travis Barker high though, thats just ridiculous. It's really just because I haven't invested in a 2 legged hi-hat stand to compliment my double bass pedal yet. I don't think I'm too interested in getting one though because then i'd probably feel that it would be necessary to have them much closer, which I don't need.

    I don't know how drummers that play with their hi-hats so high comfortably pull off any double strokes. Oh wait... :? :-? ....they dont.

    Whoever said that inexperienced drummers play with their hi-hats low and real close so the snare might be onto something, but thats really judgemental. Buuuuuuuuuttttt, I think a bigger tell of a beginner drummer is their toms. They don't take any time to setup the position and angle of their toms, it's usually just as close together as possible and slanted to the extreme. Some go for the flat style too, which I don't care for either, its harder to get good rebounds.
  17. I assume its open for public use as I've seen it a LOT of places.

    As for drummers actually doing it, all it takes is one take for them to listen to (usually) for the drummers who are serious about making it sound as good as possible to back off on the cymbals. I usually go ahead and tell them that its fine to bash the hell out of them in a live situation, but not in a studio.

    I love drummers. They are so much fun in studios. :wink:

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