#1
Hey guys, just after some suggestions, as there are plenty of ways to do this. But some are defintiely going to work better than others, and none are ideal.

My band is looking to record some demos, we've done a few before but we've programmed the drums, as i didn't really have access to the gear to do it. I've got a few more bits and pieces now, but still none are really ideal for drums.

My interface only has 2 inputs (fast track pro). I could run 2 more with the spdif input on the back, but i would need something to convert alanlog to spdif, and i don't know how the cheap analog to digital boxes would go in terms of quality and latency.

In our band room we have an 8 channel Soundcraft mixer, it's just a straight up audio device though, no USB or anything. So i have the ability to run up to 8 mics, but that will still only give me a left and right channel out to the interface if i run it that way.

In terms of mics, i have a large diaphragm condenser (which i have completely forgotten the brand/model of, it's at home and i'm at work), a pair of cheapo small diaphragm condensers, a PG57, a PG58, an SM58, a behringer XM2000 and some crappy yamaha dynamic thing.

The few ways i have thought about doing it include the following;

- 2 mics into the interface, large condenser over the top and one of the dynamics (whichever ends up sounding best) in the kick.

- 2 mics into the interface, large condenser over the top and the PG57 in front of the kick, and sort of pointing toward the snare

- 4 or 5 mics into the mixer, EQ'd on the mixer as well as possible, the run into the interface as a stereo track

- SM58 in the kick into the interface, PG57 on the snare into the mixer, large condenseor as an overhead into the mixer, mixer running into the 2nd channel on the interface. Or possibly the same as this, but the pair of small condensers as overheads instead of the single large.

The trickiest thing with any of the ones using the mixer will be phasing I think, the mixer doesn't have any phase switching on it.


So to the guys with more expericence than me, which do you think would work best? or what other way could i possibly try?

cheers for any help/advice/insults!
Terrible guitar player.
#2
From what you've got I'd probably do this:

58 and LDC into mixer as kick and overhead into ch.1 of interface
57 on snare to ch.2 of interface

The snare's probably the most important thing (IMO) to have control over, with the kick second. Having the kick and the OHs on one track should allow you to keep the thump, and if you really need to you can multi-press it.

That's just how I'd do it anyway!
#3
I would stick to programmed drums until you have appropriate equipment. My band tried for a long time to get live drums to work with 2, 3, and 4 mics and it only became usable at 4 and even then programmed drums still sounded better.

If you absolutely have to do live drums do some research on the "recorderman technique", it's a drum mic arrangement that is designed to work with only two mics and we had some mild success with it when we tried (we were limited by space issues though, so I would expect you to have better luck than us).
#4
Yeah, I'd just keep programming. Doesn't sound like you're very experienced yet and tracking 10 mics into two channels without knowledge of what you're doing is a disaster waiting to happen I have no doubt you'll get better results programming.

As an alternative, get some triggers for the set and use them to trigger your drum program, then set up 2 overheads on your interface. It'll sound more natural and still give you complete control when mixing.
Quote by Dave_Mc
I've had tube amps for a while now, but never actually had any go down on me
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#5
i'm experienced enough to make a few mics sound better than programmed drums do i like to think. ezdrummer just sounds like a robot as far as i'm (and my drummer is) concerned.

Quote by tim_mop
From what you've got I'd probably do this:

58 and LDC into mixer as kick and overhead into ch.1 of interface
57 on snare to ch.2 of interface

The snare's probably the most important thing (IMO) to have control over, with the kick second. Having the kick and the OHs on one track should allow you to keep the thump, and if you really need to you can multi-press it.

That's just how I'd do it anyway!


that's something i hadn't thought of, but it definitely makes sense. cheers!


this is what we have so far with programmed drums for anyone who's interested.
http://triplejunearthed.com.au/CrashRat

as much as it sounds ok, it's really not hard to tell they're fake!
Terrible guitar player.
#6
Quote by lysdexia
i'm experienced enough to make a few mics sound better than programmed drums do i like to think. ezdrummer just sounds like a robot as far as i'm (and my drummer is) concerned.

No offense, but from listening to your recordings, I'm not so sure.

It'd be one thing if you had outboard gear to process all of the drums on the way in, but if you only have EQ on the board and no compression, you're going to have to compress everything as one file in your DAW. You have no control over individual instruments, and thus, you're VERY limited to what you can do.

For the type of music you're recording, I have no doubt that EZDrummer would be preferable in your situation. As far as it sounding like a robot, that's because you don't know how to humanize the MIDI to sound natural. Not the program's fault.
Quote by Dave_Mc
I've had tube amps for a while now, but never actually had any go down on me
Quote by jj1565
maybe you're not saying the right things? an amp likes to know you care.





www.SanctityStudios.com
#7
Personally, I'm always a fan of live drums. I've not really heard programmed drums that sounded very good at this level.

You could sample your kit one drum at a time, and use it with the programmed track...
#8
Quote by tim_mop
Personally, I'm always a fan of live drums. I've not really heard programmed drums that sounded very good at this level.

You could sample your kit one drum at a time, and use it with the programmed track...

Meh. Unless you've got an arsenal of good mics and enough tracks to record them all, I wouldn't consider micing drums at all, unless just for a reference track or super rough demo.

Pretty sure all the EZXs are still on sale, pick up Metal Machine or Metal! for $30 and you'll have drums that would be very hard to beat, even with a couple grand in gear and a decent room
Quote by Dave_Mc
I've had tube amps for a while now, but never actually had any go down on me
Quote by jj1565
maybe you're not saying the right things? an amp likes to know you care.





www.SanctityStudios.com
#9
Are you interested in spending any money at all?

I'm looking at:
- you have eight mics
- you have a space to record (no idea how good it is, but you have a space)
- you have the willingness and enthusiasm, and at least enough general knowledge of how to go at this yourself without expecting the world.
- I'm assuming you have a computer with appropriate software.

The only thing you're missing is an interface that will take your 8 mics.

Can you rent one? I'm thinking something like $40 for a weekend and you're good to go. Use the fast-track later for mixing, because all you'll need is two decent outputs.

CT
Could I get some more talent in the monitors, please?

I know it sounds crazy, but try to learn to inhale your voice. www.thebelcantotechnique.com

Chris is the king of relating music things to other objects in real life.
#10
If it were my choice I'd pretty much do a full stereo drum mix on the analog desk itself. Small diaphragms in stereo (phase-corrected, ie. Glyn Johns/Recorderman style), PG57 on the snare, 58 on the kick. You shouldn't need to worry about flipping phase at all. Try and get as much of the sound as you can with the overheads and just use the kick/snare for added depth. Don't EQ the overheads too much, leave it all in there.

Maybe you could also blend in the LDC about 2-3ft out from the kick to capture a fatter room sound.

That should get you great results provided the kit is well tuned and in a good room.That's the most important thing by far.
#11
Cheers heaps for the input guys! with any luck my drummer and I will get to have a bit of a play with what I have over the next week or so and see what works best.
Terrible guitar player.
#12
You could just go to a studio for a few hours and track live drums. They should be all set up and ready to go. Might cost a couple hundred bucks, but if you divide it up a few ways it's not that bad. You'll end up with a much better recording. Get you're whole recording done first with programmed drums, then go to the studio and record drums, then mix/master at your own studio.

Just a thought.