How to get a firmer kick drum sound?
Worlez
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#1
19th April 2010
Old 19th April 2010
  #1
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Thread Starter
How to get a firmer kick drum sound?

Does anyone have any good info on this? I agonize over kick drum sounds, and one thing I'm always looking for is more 'weight' to the sound. Not really more bass or sub, but more density. I'm a big advocate of double mic'ing kicks, and tend to use any combo of beta52, md421, atm25, 414, ns10 and whatever else outside.

Cheers

Al
#2
19th April 2010
Old 19th April 2010
  #2
Very low folded sheet next to inside beater head?
#3
19th April 2010
Old 19th April 2010
  #3
Gear nut
 

SPL Transient Designer and a dbx 100


I think while a transient designer obviously won't make a kick deeper it can give the impression of more weight. I think weight is a combination of low end freqs below 90Hz and also around freqs around 200Hz.
#4
19th April 2010
Old 19th April 2010
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ElMosca's Avatar
 

Serendipitious find...

I recently had to change the batter head on our kick, and the store I went to only had one replacement of the right size. So, I was forced to take, but now I am loving it: It is an Aquarian Super Kick II. It has a dampening ring, and it feels thicker than the Remo controlled-sound that it replaced.

The sound is very well-rounded. A nice, loud "thud" which everyone's finding very satisfactory for Rock and Latin music.

In addition, I have been using a folded thin blanket inside, touching the batter side.

Cheers,
++aldo
#5
19th April 2010
Old 19th April 2010
  #5
Gear addict
 

+1 on the Aquarian Super Kick II! It's been my kick head of choice for over nine years. Nothing has been able to beat it yet. Although the Powerstroke 3 provides for some good tones as well.
#6
19th April 2010
Old 19th April 2010
  #6
Does the bassdrum sound good and "dense" in the first place?
#7
19th April 2010
Old 19th April 2010
  #7
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tune the drum better.

try different heads.

and make sure your double-miking is in fact better than a single mic.

the best all-around rock/pop kick drum sound i ever captured was done with a D112 a couple inches inside the head and +2 @10khz on a quad eight channel. very little effort on my part.

but then, the drummer was awesome, absolutely knew how to tune the drum, dampen the drum, and hit the drum. and he was playing a vintage slingerland kit.
#8
20th April 2010
Old 20th April 2010
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Play's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Aerophone View Post
Does the bassdrum sound good and "dense" in the first place?
I'm looking for a drum just like that.

I'd try filling the kick with shredded paper, it seems to add more colour, I've tried other things but I'm looking for a kit which has that dense thud right out of the factory.
#9
20th April 2010
Old 20th April 2010
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A lot of the newer kits have longer kick drums. My current is a 24 by 20.

Evans head with the Remo kick pad in the bottom. Its a commercial solution that does what Jules suggested, just more elegantly. It touches the head gently at the bottom.

The shredded paper probably does the same. We also used to do that with a few bags of cotton balls....a trick with also works on the toms.

A little EQ really helps with the kick. Pnce you het a descent sound, try cutting around 400, and boosing at 80-100 and 5 k. Something about losing the 400 adds a lot of weight to the kicj. Some of the newr kick mics are pre tailored in this direction.
#10
20th April 2010
Old 20th April 2010
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Igotsoul4u's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Play View Post
I'm looking for a drum just like that.

I'm looking for a kit which has that dense thud right out of the factory.
DW My favorite kick ever. I'm sure there are others out there just as nice, but out of the big brands DW has always sounded so good to me.
#11
20th April 2010
Old 20th April 2010
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Play's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Igotsoul4u View Post
DW My favorite kick ever. I'm sure there are others out there just as nice, but out of the big brands DW has always sounded so good to me.
You're talking about custom drums for Drum Workshop? Thanks for the tip, I've written it down. Do you have a song done with this drum by any chance, Id love to hear for myself.
#12
20th April 2010
Old 20th April 2010
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rcb4t2's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Aerophone View Post
Does the bassdrum sound good and "dense" in the first place?
Quote:
Originally Posted by jonathan jetter View Post
tune the drum better.

try different heads.

and make sure your double-miking is in fact better than a single mic.
.
#13
20th April 2010
Old 20th April 2010
  #13
Gear nut
 

Collagen.
#14
21st May 2010
Old 21st May 2010
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surfspank's Avatar
 

+1 on the DW. I like the Powerstroke 3 on it. Evans pad inside. Virgin kick, for some reason they just sound better to me.
#15
21st May 2010
Old 21st May 2010
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asagaai's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Steffmo View Post
A little EQ really helps with the kick. Pnce you het a descent sound, try cutting around 400, and boosing at 80-100 and 5 k. Something about losing the 400 adds a lot of weight to the kicj. Some of the newr kick mics are pre tailored in this direction.

I second the boosting at 100, and cutting 360hz to 400 hz, boosting at some 2.7k to 5k, but would further add a HP at some 40 HZ.

What really works for me is to parrallel compress the kick through a compressor that really balls and densifies the kick. I am not talking about using a compressor that has a huge open sound, but really a beast that balls and gives density and actually reduces the kick into a tight ball.

For me no compressor does this better out of my compressors than a sebatron nitrous in "tight" mode, with moderate attack and quick release. Somthing to think about- a balling compressor- oh my

GJ
Newcastle/OZ
#16
21st May 2010
Old 21st May 2010
  #16
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just get a casio...geez
#17
21st May 2010
Old 21st May 2010
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TRANQUILO's Avatar
 

Starting point

It starts with the bass drum itself then we go down the line into mics, pres, eq, comp...etc.

Try a single headed kick drum with a pillow in it. Play around with the dampening and tuning. then play around with mics and placement.
#18
21st May 2010
Old 21st May 2010
  #18
Gear nut
 

slow attack compressor + eq
#19
21st May 2010
Old 21st May 2010
  #19
Gear maniac
 

One of the easiest things you can do to tighten up and add weight to the kick is to put a stage-weight or heavy book on top of Jules's folded blanket or pillow idea. No idea why this is the case but it has always worked for me, and is my method de rigeur after seeing it done in Eden Studios, London.
#20
21st May 2010
Old 21st May 2010
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Daedalus77's Avatar
Ok, I'll be the heretic: Add some samples?

(Running quickly away from the computer...)
#21
21st May 2010
Old 21st May 2010
  #21
Gear nut
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Daedalus77 View Post
Ok, I'll be the heretic: Add some samples?

(Running quickly away from the computer...)
Running along with being a heretic (kind of...)

Phase alignment is one thing, but shifting the phase, sample by sample, is how I've often found the deepest kick.

It's interesting to hear the phase cancel out this and that and hearing the pitch and punch of the kick change dramatically.
#22
21st May 2010
Old 21st May 2010
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Daedalus77's Avatar
Steffmo's EQ advice is great; I'd just add that using a good, outboard EQ with hefty transformers never hurt in the "density" department. API560s are sorta classic in this application, but I'd also recommend the Purple TAV (graphic like the 560, but an inductor EQ that just sounds "bigger" and a bit less aggressive to me than the 560) and the Avedis E27, whose transformers just seem to add great weight to anything run through them.

Oh, and if you're double-miking and don't have an IBP, got get one ASAP.
#23
21st May 2010
Old 21st May 2010
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steelyfan's Avatar
 

[QUOTE]
Quote:
Originally Posted by Worlez View Post
Does anyone have any good info on this?
6 PLy shell, thick batter head, blanket inside up on the skin, VLA II compressor......set it, leave it.
#24
21st May 2010
Old 21st May 2010
  #24
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api2500's Avatar
Get a new Drummer.

Or cheat and use Waves Trans-X.

My post so belongs on KVR...
#25
21st May 2010
Old 21st May 2010
  #25
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Mertmo's Avatar
 

Try a wood beater instead of felt or plastic. HUGE difference in my world...
#26
21st May 2010
Old 21st May 2010
  #26
Gear maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by jonathan jetter View Post
...the drummer was awesome, absolutely knew how to tune the drum, dampen the drum, and hit the drum. and he was playing a vintage slingerland kit.
I recorded a guy like that with a kit like that once. Could not have asked for an easier day of drum tracking.
#27
21st May 2010
Old 21st May 2010
  #27
Gear maniac
 

Don't be afraid to tune the resonant head a little higher. Most drummers seem to tune their resonant head just above the wrinkle point, thinking it will give them the most low end. They couldn't be more wrong. It makes a kick sound muddy instead. A slightly tighter reso head will make the kick sound more focused and fills the room better. Also, if the front hoop of the bass drum is resting on the ground, raise the spurs slightly so that it lifts off the ground a bit. An often overseen detail, but it can actually make a nice difference, because it lets the whole drum vibrate more freely.
#28
21st May 2010
Old 21st May 2010
  #28
3 + infractions, forum membership suspended.
 

Samples
#29
21st May 2010
Old 21st May 2010
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Quote:
Quote:
Originally Posted by thismercifulfate View Post
Also, if the front hoop of the bass drum is resting on the ground, raise the spurs slightly so that it lifts off the ground a bit. An often overseen detail, but it can actually make a nice difference, because it lets the whole drum vibrate more freely.
Nice observation. thumbsup
#30
21st May 2010
Old 21st May 2010
  #30
Gear nut
 
TheChariot's Avatar
 

Re: How to get a firmer kick drum sound?

Massive Passive. It makes my kick sound scare little children.
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