Recording drums with only 4 inputs

Discussion in 'Drums' started by theron_day, Sep 28, 2005.

  1. theron_day

    theron_day Guest

    Hey guys, wanted to pick your brains and get some opinions on how to handle this situation. I need to record drums this saturday in a medium sized room, the wall are non parallel and are also carpeted (used to be an old recording studio).

    My equipment:
    Cubase SX3/P4 DAW
    Mackie VLZ1202
    Delta 66 soundcard
    Avalon M5 pre
    RNP (dual mic pres)
    RNC (dual compressors)
    Art Studio MP (tube pre)
    Art Pro VLA compressor (dual compressor)
    Mics: AT3035, Studio Projects C4 (small condensor pair), Studio Projects B3, Behringer B1, SM57, SM58, Shure Beta 52)

    I am figuring on doing this.
    C4 pair as overheads (through the RNP/RNC)
    SM57 through Avalon (compress not sure)
    Beta52 through Art Studio MP?

    Any suggestions, much, much appreciated!!!!

    Thanks guys!

    Theron D
  2. rc86mike

    rc86mike Guest

    SM57 on the snare, AT3035 on the kick, the two small condensers in XY pattern as your OH's. It'll sound more than fine. Good luck!
  3. theron_day

    theron_day Guest

    AT3035 on the kick, not the Beta52?
  4. stickers

    stickers Active Member

    Jan 31, 2005
    Lowell MA
    Home Page:
    use the 52 inside. But i would try to place the overhead pointing towards the toms and not that high up and also the drummer needs to hit the toms hard and the cymbals a bit soft.
  5. theron_day

    theron_day Guest

    cool thanks will do. hes a controlled drummer trained at Berklee in Mass....

    Theron D
  6. rc86mike

    rc86mike Guest

    I like the Beta 52 a lot on the kick but I tried the 3035 not too long ago and I really liked how it sounded. I like using it if I'm going for a different sound. I used it on a folk track and put it outside of the kick drum (about 2 inches?) and it got a really nice full, "wooshy" sound. I was suprised.
  7. o2x

    o2x Active Member

    Mar 17, 2005
    As above, but be aware that you'll be relying a lot more on the overheads than you would with close micing. Because of this the room plays an even more important part in the process.

    Loads of drum tracks are recorded using this technique - so if your room has no glaring accoustic problems and the kit is well maintained you should get a good sound.

    You'll also be more restricted when it comes to mixing - micing drums in this fashion limits the eq/dynamics/fx you can add in. However if your after a nice natural kit sound this is a fine way to go.

    [RANT] I hate overworked kit sounds, if you want your drums to sound like an SR16, get an SR16. [/RANT] :wink:
  8. theron_day

    theron_day Guest

    I really want to stay away from compression while tracking and want to keep it post production via plugins. if necsaary I may have to a little on the kick and snare.....the OH's we'll see???

    This is new to me so there is going to be a big learning curve.....but hey that's what its all about....

    Thanks guys
    Theron D

  9. moonbaby

    moonbaby Mmmmmm Well-Known Member

    Feb 23, 2005
    One of the reasons that the SM57 works so well on snare is that it provides a bit of dynamic compression all on its own. You usually won't need to add compression to it, especially for a "schooled" drummer. Berklee, eh? Did he ask for his own room with scented candles?
    BTW,I used to record drums in rooms like you described."Carpeting
    on the walls" was popular in the 70s and 80s. Is it shag?
    These days, IT SUCKS!! That stuff will suck the life out of the skins.
    You don't really want to make them sound like cardboard boxes, do you? Try pulling SOME of that junk off one of the walls...maybe that will breathe a little life back into the room.
  10. theron_day

    theron_day Guest

    looks like things have changed and we will record in the drummer basement, bare walls......may be too reverberant so we are going to soak up some reflections with a bed mattresses and cushions and blankets...


  11. stickers

    stickers Active Member

    Jan 31, 2005
    Lowell MA
    Home Page:
    yeah hang blankets from the rafters around the kit.
  12. Thomaster

    Thomaster Guest

    you might also wanna check out the famous
    (at least, overhere, its famous) 'Recorderman OH-technique'
    [just do a searchquery on it overhere]

    i've used his technique as a starting point for some really good drum-recordings with 4 or even 3 mics (2 oh's and a kickmic)

    the following 'advices' (its a big word for things that i say out of experience, but they just might come in handy) are cool in combination with Recorderman's technique:

    the fact that you already have a SD-mic, will give you more options, you might for instance point the two OH's at the middle of the toms
    [instead of aiming it at the snare, like the technique states]

    (if you have 2 racktoms and a floor, try aiming the right OH at the point between the floor and the middle tom, and the left OH at the point between the two highest toms.)

    also, try keeping the cymbals and hats high up, so that they dont sit in the mic's faces.

    goodluck! recording drums is fun! :cool:

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