#1
Woohoo! I'm getting really really close to being able to record high quality drums! Now I have all the 8 mics set up but I was wondering if I set them up right or if there is an ideal way to do it

4 of my mics go on the 4 "toms" (if you could call a snare a tom) and they have clips that clip to the rim. Do I want to point the mics toward the center, in between the rim and center, or what?

Then I have 2 overhead mics which I just put at kind of random locations. What am I supposed to do with these?

Then I have a hi-hat mic. Just put this pointing right down at the hi-hat?

And finally the bass drum mic. Place it in the center right? How far away from the skin should it be? What angle should I place it?
#2
(this is what i've been taught to do in my music course, so it's what i do) overheads should be over the kit, pointing towards the cymbals at equal angles so they're both looking at the same point. toms and snare mics pointing towards the center, hi hat mic aimed at the middle of hi hat, kick mic either near the hole in the skin or in the center, whichever sounds better.
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#3
I don't have that much experience with drums so I do recommend you to play around some on your own but rule-of-thumbs would be mics sitting on rims on the toms pointed downwards.

Snare I'd say on a seperate stand placed close to the edge of rim but pointed towards the center.

overhead you should read up on X/Y micing... http://www.soundonsound.com/sos/apr06/images/sosoverheadsxy.l.jpg

hi-hat and drum I don't know very well so try
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Last edited by backtothe70s at Mar 19, 2011,
#4
I've always been taught that overheads should be around 2 foot off the closest cymbal, not the same height all over. Don't aim at the centre of the tom/snare aim for where your drummer hits, thats the point of impact and where the noise comes from.
Kick is a choice really, you can stick a mic right inside the kick and get an amazing sound cause you get the click and punch from the kick but some prefer to leave it slightly nearer the whole and have a separate mic (sm 57) where the beater hits the kick drum on the drummer side. It's hard to mic up and can be awkward if your drummer has big legs but will get good results.
Its trial and error but the biggest thing with drums is mixing. Mix from your overheads and add the others in to add them. Other wise you just constantly keep turing everything up and your drum kit is really overbearing.
#5
Shoot, I don't have a hole in my drum kick head. Also would anyone happen to have a picture of good placement of overheads?
#7
Okay I am going to make a recording with how I have it set-up right now. Maybe you guys will notice problems?
#8
google for a photo and some more techniques. Yeah unless you want to take the skin of and then bodge it back on with the lead coming out or cut a hole in it. Wouldn't advice either though i'd just position the mic 2 inches from the kick.

You have to think about what your mics are picking up as well. If your snare and a cymbal are right next to each other they will spill into each others mics. Thankfully most mic's are directional so place the head where you want to capture the sound and the back at what you don't want to with that mic.
#9
Quote by Tmusician
Shoot, I don't have a hole in my drum kick head. Also would anyone happen to have a picture of good placement of overheads?

My thread.

3rd and 4th post down is how I set my drum mics up for metal, although I've since decided upon lowering the overheads by about 8-12 inches to get more crash to hi-hat ratio.


BUT

I can't stress this enough - there is no 'right' way to mic up a kit. It's all about what sound you're going for, the genre and what you have available to you. Some people have said mix from overheads: good for some genres, apalling for rock/metal. Some have said to put a mic right inside the kick by the batter head... I find I get way more punch using simple physics and putting the mic half in, half out the sound hole where the pressure of the sound being compressed through a small hole seems to give a bigger impact and retain the 'clicky' punch... not to mention I like to put a Falam Slam pad on the batter head, and make the drummer use plastic beater heads on his kick pedal.


Oh, and having a well-tuned, well-maintained kit matters more than mic placement tbh. No one method will work all of the time, and your choice of mics can be just as important as where you place them too. Getting a good sound from the kit consistently over your recordings will be one of the toughest recording skills for you to learn... I'd say I'm barely halfway there myself, but once you do get the hang of it you can accomplish anything.
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Last edited by DisarmGoliath at Mar 19, 2011,
#10
A tip...

When you have your overheads in a position that works, be sure to check the phase on the other drums. Some preamps have a phase switch on the their front panel and basically every console does too. If your interface doesn't, check for a phase plugin within your DAW (pro Tools has the "trim" plugin, which has a phase switch.

What you want to do is first solo the snare and see how it sounds. Than solo the overheads and the snare together. If your snare seems to lose some energy or become thinner, than invert the phase on the snare. See how it sounds now and make adjustments to your mics, if necessary. Repeat this process for your toms.
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#11
Quote by JonChorba
A tip...

When you have your overheads in a position that works, be sure to check the phase on the other drums. Some preamps have a phase switch on the their front panel and basically every console does too. If your interface doesn't, check for a phase plugin within your DAW (pro Tools has the "trim" plugin, which has a phase switch.

What you want to do is first solo the snare and see how it sounds. Than solo the overheads and the snare together. If your snare seems to lose some energy or become thinner, than invert the phase on the snare. See how it sounds now and make adjustments to your mics, if necessary. Repeat this process for your toms.

I'd say a better solution is to time-allign the mic sources to the overheads. Inverting the polarity (not the phase) can never work close to 100% (or the theoretical 99.99999% accuracy) because you can only flip the signal, rather than shifting it along so the phase matches up.
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