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Kick Drum

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February 8, 2005 8:59:36 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

Hi, I've been working on trying to get a good kick drum sound out of my
sonor fusion (22" kick) using a shure beta 52. I'm having problems
getting a sound that I'm happy with. Seems no matter where I position
the mic, I'm getting a "dumpy" kind of sound.. kind of plastic sound in
the mid to upper freq. ranges. THe bottom is very strong.. to the point
that I have to eq. it down.. I've tried a few different beaters (felt
and plastic.. havnen't tried wood yet), tried taking the front head
off, using with and without a blankit inside the head... I have a sm57
avail. that I haven't tried mixing in yet.. I'm not an expert at
tuning drums by any stretch, but I have played with the tuning to the
point that I was able to get a little closer to sound I want. I'm
trying to get a strong attack with a littel smack! while keeping a
bottom strong, but not overwhelming. I guess one question is, how much
or often to you eq the kick after tracking? I have read that you should
be able to get a good sound without much eq at all. Also, if anyone
has any solo'd kick samples or knows where I can download or listen..
that may help too. I've listened to some samples that seem to be taken
from a complete mix.. i.e. overheads, room mics, included. that sound
great, but didn't help me get a good reference for my kick. Any tips or
ideas would be greatly appreciated. Sorry for being long winded :-)

More about : kick drum

Anonymous
February 8, 2005 9:24:22 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

Assuming the drum sounds like you want it to in the room, I think
you're going to need another mic. If a 57 is what you have at your
disposal, then try to position your 52 inside the drum...with blanket
and you also might try a sand bag or weight on the blanket. It
helps....don't ask why, it just works. Then try to position the 57 on
the beater side aimed at the point where the beater hits the head.
You're just looking to pick up the smack there.
Mix the two to taste.
The 52 is a nice kick mic, but very position critical. Much more than
some of the other normal kick mics, I've found. A quarter of an inch
move will really change it a lot. I always messed with mine way too
much. Then I started using another and have had a much easier time
getting usable sounds quickly.
Also, some of your kick and snare sounds will come from the other mics.
Especially the OH mics. Don't discount this as in the entire mix,
your drums might sound a lot better/different than when you solo them.
For that matter, who cares what a mic sounds like soloed. It's the
whole drumkit sound that you're after.
later,
m
Anonymous
February 8, 2005 12:24:56 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

"David" <david@graphic-works.com> wrote in message
news:1107871176.828200.183040@c13g2000cwb.googlegroups.com...
> Hi, I've been working on trying to get a good kick drum sound out of my
> sonor fusion (22" kick) using a shure beta 52. I'm having problems
> getting a sound that I'm happy with. Seems no matter where I position
> the mic, I'm getting a "dumpy" kind of sound.. kind of plastic sound in
> the mid to upper freq. ranges.

You neglected to mention some important details - are you placing the mic
inside the drum (through a port on the front head)? What head combination
and/muffling?

If you're putting the mic inside through a port, and if you're using one of
the more common heads (EQ1, Emad, PS3) that have some muffling/tone control
that's integral to the head - - then you may not be using any additional
muffling. In this case, you can use a small towel (even as small as a
washcloth) that's laid on the bottom of the inside of the drum. It'll
eliminate all that high-mid wierdness that happens inside the drum and still
let you keep pillows and such off the head so you don't have to worry about
the response at the beater.

You'll be very surprised at the difference this simple thing will make.
Night and Day. And having the mic inside the drum, pointed at the spot the
beater hits and about 3-4" away from that point will get you all the
definition you need with little EQ. Also - move that mic around inside the
drum. It's VERY sensitive to placement and has a pronounced proximity
effect near the bass and also (oddly enough) in the range that the drum's
attack shows. As little as a half inch will make a difference.

Also - if you're trying to use the Beta 52 outside the drum - I've yet to
find a good placement for that mic that works outside the drum. ESPECIALLY
right at the port on the front head. I've seen people get decent sounds
like this in a live setting, but I could never get it to record well like
that.

And you may want to post at rec.music.makers.percussion. Lot of good drum i
nfo mixed in with the wierdness over there. That's all I got.

dik
Related resources
February 8, 2005 1:20:07 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

Thanks for the replies!

I've tried micing from inside (from 2/3 back from the beater all the
way to about 4 inches) and outside (this was the worst).. as well as
midway into the port whole.. I've also removed the front head and
used a blanket to cover. One thing that I've learned that I didn't
know by reading this thread is the sensitivty to placement that the
beta 52 has.. I didn't think an inch would make that big a different..
so I will have to go back experiment more with placement. As far as
the head goes.. I'm not a drummer.... but what I do know (which I have
a feeling isn't good :) ) is that It's the head that came on the kick
when I purchased it.. It it clear and has a transparent ring around
the outer edge.. No black circle in the middle. Also.. as far as the
mix versus the direct kick mic.. I hear what you're saying,, .. but
this whole thing started becase I couldn't get the drum mix to sound
like I wanted and after some mixing / testing.. I realized that it was
the Kick that I (at least I think) didn't like.

Again.. thanks for all of your replies.. I'm taking notes!
Anonymous
February 8, 2005 2:01:24 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

It sounds like the basketball effect is what he's after.
later,
m
Anonymous
February 8, 2005 2:19:38 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

Ah yes, the plastic sound. Leave front head on. Put mic 2/3 way inside drum,
slightly off axis. Bandlimit the track. LF and HF pass filters, perhaps
around 80 and 10k. Notch something out around 500 (wide Q). Shelf EQ up to
20k (smack smack) and down to 20 (boom boom). Then GATE IT, and make sure it
is in phase.

David <david@graphic-works.com> wrote in message
news:1107871176.828200.183040@c13g2000cwb.googlegroups.com...
> Hi, I've been working on trying to get a good kick drum sound out of my
> sonor fusion (22" kick) using a shure beta 52. I'm having problems
> getting a sound that I'm happy with. Seems no matter where I position
> the mic, I'm getting a "dumpy" kind of sound.. kind of plastic sound in
> the mid to upper freq. ranges. THe bottom is very strong.. to the point
> that I have to eq. it down.. I've tried a few different beaters (felt
> and plastic.. havnen't tried wood yet), tried taking the front head
> off, using with and without a blankit inside the head... I have a sm57
> avail. that I haven't tried mixing in yet.. I'm not an expert at
> tuning drums by any stretch, but I have played with the tuning to the
> point that I was able to get a little closer to sound I want. I'm
> trying to get a strong attack with a littel smack! while keeping a
> bottom strong, but not overwhelming. I guess one question is, how much
> or often to you eq the kick after tracking? I have read that you should
> be able to get a good sound without much eq at all. Also, if anyone
> has any solo'd kick samples or knows where I can download or listen..
> that may help too. I've listened to some samples that seem to be taken
> from a complete mix.. i.e. overheads, room mics, included. that sound
> great, but didn't help me get a good reference for my kick. Any tips or
> ideas would be greatly appreciated. Sorry for being long winded :-)
>
Anonymous
February 8, 2005 3:30:25 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

first off the kick drum is part of the drum kit. It matters the way it
sounds with all the mics, NOT by itself. Start getting your drum sound by
putting the overheads up first, then the individual mics. I find all these
deadened heads like the emad's etc contribute to a plasticy sound. Get some
good old fashioned remo heads without any muffling and muffle the kick
yourself. The DW pillow works pretty well. Lastly you probably will need
some eq. Bass drum is pretty tough especially a 22, to get a sound without
eq. The one mic I've been able to get a nice sound out of is the audix D6.
As far as position goes, are you trying the mic outside of the kick? If not
try it.
--Lou Gimenez
The Music Lab
2" 24track w all the Goodies
www.musiclabnyc.com



> From: "David" <david@graphic-works.com>
> Organization: http://groups.google.com
> Newsgroups: rec.audio.pro
> Date: 8 Feb 2005 05:59:36 -0800
> Subject: Kick Drum
>
> Hi, I've been working on trying to get a good kick drum sound out of my
> sonor fusion (22" kick) using a shure beta 52. I'm having problems
> getting a sound that I'm happy with. Seems no matter where I position
> the mic, I'm getting a "dumpy" kind of sound.. kind of plastic sound in
> the mid to upper freq. ranges. THe bottom is very strong.. to the point
> that I have to eq. it down.. I've tried a few different beaters (felt
> and plastic.. havnen't tried wood yet), tried taking the front head
> off, using with and without a blankit inside the head... I have a sm57
> avail. that I haven't tried mixing in yet.. I'm not an expert at
> tuning drums by any stretch, but I have played with the tuning to the
> point that I was able to get a little closer to sound I want. I'm
> trying to get a strong attack with a littel smack! while keeping a
> bottom strong, but not overwhelming. I guess one question is, how much
> or often to you eq the kick after tracking? I have read that you should
> be able to get a good sound without much eq at all. Also, if anyone
> has any solo'd kick samples or knows where I can download or listen..
> that may help too. I've listened to some samples that seem to be taken
> from a complete mix.. i.e. overheads, room mics, included. that sound
> great, but didn't help me get a good reference for my kick. Any tips or
> ideas would be greatly appreciated. Sorry for being long winded :-)
>
Anonymous
February 8, 2005 6:37:39 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

David Wrote:
> Hi, I've been working on trying to get a good kick drum sound out of my
> sonor fusion (22" kick) using a shure beta 52. I'm having problems
> getting a sound that I'm happy with. Seems no matter where I position
> the mic, I'm getting a "dumpy" kind of sound.. kind of plastic sound
> in
> the mid to upper freq. ranges. THe bottom is very strong.. to the
> point
> that I have to eq. it down..

It sounds to me like you have a two fold problem... the first with the
tuning of the drum [for the attack you describe you kinda want to have
a pretty loose beater side head so the beater literally sinks into the
head creating the 'snap']... use the outter head to attain a note to
the drum that is suitable for the song(s) you are recording.

It also seems that you have a microphone selection and placement issue.
It really isn't rocket surgery to record a kik drum, but you will need
to find the right mic for your sense of aesthetic and place that mic in
the right spot.

Very often there will be a mic that will have a little bump on the
bottom that will be complimentary to how you've tuned the drum. You
might want to take a look at a Sennheiser MD-421 or a Beyer M-88 or if
you hit the lottery a Soundelux U-195 [with the "big" switch and the
"lo-cut" switch engaged simultaneously and the drum tuned to the right
note it's instant "no-EQ" kik drum from heaven above].

Best of luck.


--
Fletcher
February 8, 2005 7:41:11 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

David wrote:
> Thanks for the replies!
>
> I've tried micing from inside (from 2/3 back from the beater all the
> way to about 4 inches) and outside (this was the worst).. as well as
> midway into the port whole.. I've also removed the front head and
> used a blanket to cover. One thing that I've learned that I didn't
> know by reading this thread is the sensitivty to placement that the
> beta 52 has.. I didn't think an inch would make that big a
different..
> so I will have to go back experiment more with placement. As far as
> the head goes.. I'm not a drummer.... but what I do know (which I
have
> a feeling isn't good :) ) is that It's the head that came on the kick
> when I purchased it.. It it clear and has a transparent ring around
> the outer edge.. No black circle in the middle. Also.. as far as the
> mix versus the direct kick mic.. I hear what you're saying,, .. but
> this whole thing started becase I couldn't get the drum mix to sound
> like I wanted and after some mixing / testing.. I realized that it
was
> the Kick that I (at least I think) didn't like.
>
> Again.. thanks for all of your replies.. I'm taking notes!

are you using any compressors ?
Anonymous
February 8, 2005 9:38:39 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

>Also - if you're trying to use the Beta 52 outside the drum - I've yet to
>find a good placement for that mic that works outside the drum. ESPECIALLY
>right at the port on the front head. I've seen people get decent sounds
>like this in a live setting

I have found in a live setting outsidd the drumis the ONLY place I like a
52..anywhere inside gives the D-112 basketball effect.


John A. Chiara
SOS Recording Studio
Live Sound Inc.
Albany, NY
www.sosrecording.net
518-449-1637
Anonymous
February 8, 2005 9:38:40 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

> >Also - if you're trying to use the Beta 52 outside the drum - I've yet to
> >find a good placement for that mic that works outside the drum.
ESPECIALLY
> >right at the port on the front head. I've seen people get decent sounds
> >like this in a live setting
>
> I have found in a live setting outsidd the drumis the ONLY place I like a
> 52..anywhere inside gives the D-112 basketball effect.

Same with the D12. If there's only one mic being used inside close to the
beater the 421 and 441 are best for both sound balance and physical shape.
At the sound hole there's no mic that works for more styles and drum types
than a D12. The D112 only seems to work for a punchy pop sound, forget
blues or jazz.

Another technique that works for most styles is to remove the outer skin and
extend the kick shell with a carpet tube with an LDC near the end and cover
the end with a heavy jacket. It gives a tremendous body along with a well
defined beater smack which is consistent to the drumming style. It's not
doing the condenser any favors, but the cheap tube mics (CAD M9, Apex 460)
work well and are expendable enough, and they beat a sound-hole D12 every
time for me. A D12 in the same position gives muddier low end and less
defined beater.
Anonymous
February 10, 2005 1:17:17 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

Fletcher wrote:

> a dead head certainly will be an impediment

Well, right, Jerry don't play so well no more and the band definitely
ain't the same without him.

--
ha
!