3 mics you'd pick for capturing a drumkit, go
atropos
Thread Starter
#1
8th August 2013
Old 8th August 2013
  #1
Gear maniac
 

Thread Starter
3 mics you'd pick for capturing a drumkit, go

Looking for some ideas here, as it seems that there is little consensus to be found in a forum search

Stipulations:

-You're recording a decent sized kit (7 piece, quite a few cymbals).
-You have a fairly open carpet / sheetrock room with a high (18' or so)open ceiling in the middle, and 8 portable sound panels to place around if needed.
-You have 4 decent channels with which to work (RME UFX or equivalent).
-You have an SM57, and need 3 other mics with which to capture this kit.
-The music style is rock, a bit technical and dynamic at times. Assume the drums are tuned well, and the player is competent.
-You have a budget of about $1500.

What do you buy?
#2
8th August 2013
Old 8th August 2013
  #2
Gear nut
 

Coles 4038 for single OH
AKG D12 for kick
Stellar CM6 (or any decent $500 tube ldc) for room mic

That should come out to roughly $1500- especially if you go used.
#3
8th August 2013
Old 8th August 2013
  #3
Lives for gear
 

Assuming there's just one kick happening, I'd say kick/snare/and a pair of overheads to pick up toms, cymbals and room seems like a safe bet. Pick one of the usual suspects for kick (depending on how rock it is, D112, D12, or D6?) plus a decent pair of LDCs (there are so many- maybe look at Advanced Audio or Mojave?) should do it. Experiment with placement.
#4
8th August 2013
Old 8th August 2013
  #4
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nickelironsteel's Avatar
 

Wsw d12 for kick
U47 mono room
Sm2 for drummers head perspective
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#5
8th August 2013
Old 8th August 2013
  #5
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AwTAC's Avatar
 

honestly, if I was in your shoes with $1500 the way to make that money go farthest is to go rent some studio time in a well outfitted studio. I dont know if that is practical for you, and Im not so bold as to suggest that you can't find three decent mics for $1500 however for that money, if you find the right spot you can put 6 u47's on your drum kit and do it in a room that was acoustically designed and have mics high and far away. AND have someone press record for you. AND have money left over. In 2013, with that budget, you can basically get the best drum sound ever recorded if you are near a city with decent studios. Dont know what your situation is, but that is massively maximizing your investment compared to whatever three mics you wind up with for that cash. As an aside, one of the most fun drum sounds I ever got was with only four 421's on a kit. Not trying to be all snobish about it, but ownership isnt always the best approach.
#6
8th August 2013
Old 8th August 2013
  #6
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dented42ford's Avatar
What I'd do is use the 57 on the snare - not my favorite, but serviceable. Beyer m88 for the Kick ($350). Then either go for a pair of decent SDC's (Josephson c42's $975 or Shure KSM41's $870) or ribbons (Cascade Fathead $749/pr, Beyer m160+130 ~$1k) for "overheads". Go condensers for bright and transient, ribbons for smoother and more natural. If you have $40 left over, find a used EV635a and hang it over the drummer's head.

I've gotten great drum sounds with nothing but cheap mics, and absolutely horrible ones with U47's & RCA's. Depends on the drummer and the day and my mood and the position of Mercury with regard to Venus and god knows what else. Though I must say that I ALWAYS throw up that 635 - and I almost always use it. Sometimes as the main part of the take...
#7
8th August 2013
Old 8th August 2013
  #7
Lives for gear
 

beyer m160 on spaced pair overheads - $1100
kick atm250 or d112 - $200

with the left over money pick up a second hand m201 for snare.
#8
8th August 2013
Old 8th August 2013
  #8
Gear Guru
 
chrisso's Avatar
 

Coles, D12, some kind of affordable condenser - Avenson, Josephson?
#9
8th August 2013
Old 8th August 2013
  #9
Gear Head
Earthworks DK25 drumkit system. Sounds really good on good drummers. Not so good when the drummer don't know how to play in a studio. I often add a Beta57 for the snare.
#10
8th August 2013
Old 8th August 2013
  #10
Gear addict
 
K. Osborne's Avatar
Trying to shy away from typical answers, just to give you some things to think about!

Telefunken M80 snare - $250 - kills a 57.
Telefunken M82 - $400 (it rocks..just demo'd it)
Michael Joly K47 - $800 - Overhead - Really nice sounding mic.
Crown PZM mic - $150- for distorted room mic.

If you want stereo overheads I'd get the Avenson STO2 pair ($600), two Josephson C42s, or a Cascade Fathead pair.
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#11
8th August 2013
Old 8th August 2013
  #11
Gear Guru
 
chrisso's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by K. Osborne View Post
Trying to shy away from typical answers, just to give you some things to think about!
He was looking for consensus.
Still, nice looking suggestions.
#12
8th August 2013
Old 8th August 2013
  #12
Gear addict
 
ScottTunes's Avatar
 

Electro-Voice RE200 for OHs, EV N/D868 for kick, and your 57 for snare.

The EVs are superb "sleepers!"
#13
8th August 2013
Old 8th August 2013
  #13
Gear addict
Quote:
Originally Posted by gouge View Post
beyer m160 on spaced pair overheads - $1100
kick atm250 or d112 - $200

with the left over money pick up a second hand m201 for snare.
+1, I love the Beyer ribbons for oh, and the 201 kicks ass on snare. If I could only have one brand of microphone it would either be Beyer or AT.
#14
8th August 2013
Old 8th August 2013
  #14
Lives for gear
So basically the consensus is... there is no consensus for drum mics!
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#15
8th August 2013
Old 8th August 2013
  #15
Gear maniac
 

Can we do things completely different based on budget? Here's what I'd prefer to do:

Focusrite Octopre mkII - $400 used
Audix dp5a pack - $450 used
CAD m179 3-pack - $360-370 new
5 boom stands - $200 total for cheap ones
Use what's left on any cables you might need.
#16
8th August 2013
Old 8th August 2013
  #16
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roger's Avatar
 

4 mics for a big busy 7-piece kit with lotsa cymbals is NOT gonna sound great at all. or at least you are not gonna get good tom definition/punch with respect to your kick and snare.

if you can't increase channel-count then simplify the kit! 2 cymbals (ride and crash) and just a 3, maybe 4 piece.

you're not gonna get a consensus on what mics to use...there are too many good options. i can't believe more slutz aren't telling you to rethink things or, (wise words above^^^), rent a good studio for a day or 2 and capture your big kit in a way that will give you good options.

again...if you want punch and definition you need to change the kit or get more channels.

with a simple kit there are a lot of 4-mic techniques (or 3, 2 & 1 for that matter).
#17
8th August 2013
Old 8th August 2013
  #17
Gear addict
 
AwTAC's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by roger View Post
4 mics for a big busy 7-piece kit with lotsa cymbals is NOT gonna sound great at all.
this is hardly the rule of law if you have experience with recording a drum kit like this. In a decent sounding room, Id chose 4 over 10 mics on any size drum kit every time if I had my choice.
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#18
8th August 2013
Old 8th August 2013
  #18
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roger's Avatar
 

[QUOTE=AwTAC;9311651]''this is hardly the rule of law if you have experience with recording a drum kit like this. In a decent sounding room, Id chose 4 over 10 mics on any size drum kit every time''.

that's great man...whatever works for you! .....but don't tell me you can get a whole range of sounds (tight and punchy vs ambient and washy etc) from your 4 mics on a big busy kit with lotsa cymbals - no matter how great your room is! contrary to what your knowledge is telling you, experience is telling ME to simplify the kit OR get more channels.....UNLESS i am after a more ambient, less punchy, roomy sound. - in which case 4 mics can be fine....in fact 1 or 2 can be great! but we don't know what the thread-starter is after do we?

you gotta capture whatever drum sound fits the material & your comment: ''Id chose 4 over 10 mics on any size drum kit every time'' - is pretty narrow-minded/tunnel-visioned....on some material and on bigger kits I would certainly chose the 10 mics over the 4! there are no rules - but you gotta be adaptable and it's nice to be able to do/capture what's best for the music!
#19
8th August 2013
Old 8th August 2013
  #19
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e3p0's Avatar
 

Room- SM81
Mono OH- SM81
Snare- your 57
Kick- SM7 or RE20

This setup can and will work to get great results (considering it is a decent drummer with decent gear in a decent room). Bonus all are multi-purpose and come in under your budget.

I would like to try the Earthworks drum kit, but I have never really had the luxury of a great drummer/ great room combo to try it out on either.

You could use the extra $500 or so left over for room treatment, cables, stands...

(apologies in advance to those that are not fans of Shure, but I think it would be hard to beat at the price point)
#20
8th August 2013
Old 8th August 2013
  #20
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by AwTAC View Post
this is hardly the rule of law if you have experience with recording a drum kit like this. In a decent sounding room, Id chose 4 over 10 mics on any size drum kit every time if I had my choice.
Agreed. You can get great sounding drums with 4 mics.

You won't get consensus on any *one* of these three, let alone all of them. That being said, for me:

1) I'd use two condensers for overheads in something like a Recorderman set up. I would lean toward LDCs as I find SDCs can sound a bit weak on toms without close micing to augment the tone. I like my AT4050s for this role (as well as many others) but there are lots of choices. 2) SM57 on snare is a good choice, and you own it already. 3) Then pick your favorite kick mic. More modern sound - D6; more classic rock - D112 etc. Given you have a 57, the other mics new would run you just over your budget. Buy one or more used and you can be under budget.

I would likely not use a room mic with only four channels available. I'd just use some reverb and call it a day.
#21
8th August 2013
Old 8th August 2013
  #21
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imloggedin's Avatar
 

Overheads - Shure KSM32 x2 - $800 (Used)
Cymbals (Close) - MXL 603 - $135
Kick - Audix D6 - $200

Toms:
DDrum Trigger Kit - $100
Alesis Trigger IO - $160
Slate Drums - $100

Spaced pair with KSM32's. Close mic the cymbals with the 603S (they actually sound good). Use your 57 on the snare. Put triggers on toms and kick/snare. Use room samples from Slate while mixing kick/snare samples. You aren't going to record much better than that on a budget.
#22
8th August 2013
Old 8th August 2013
  #22
Gear nut
 

I'm guessing OP has only 4 pre's and that's why he limited his original question to the SM57 plus 3 additional mics...
#23
8th August 2013
Old 8th August 2013
  #23
Gear interested
 

Get a good set of condensers and a good kick mic, work on placement and room sound
and you can get a good drum sound.
#24
8th August 2013
Old 8th August 2013
  #24
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Labs's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by gouge View Post
beyer m160 on spaced pair overheads - $1100
kick atm250 or d112 - $200

with the left over money pick up a second hand m201 for snare.
Identical to what I thought...

Gustav
#25
8th August 2013
Old 8th August 2013
  #25
Gear maniac
 

I'll change it up and say

Beta 56 snare
Beta 52 Kick

Two Rode NT-2 in Omni overhead, spaced wide.

If you can swing a little more budget, I'd use something like an AEA R88 overhead. That thing is amazing on drums and gets huge tom sounds while getting very balanced cymbals without a lot of effort.
#26
8th August 2013
Old 8th August 2013
  #26
Gear nut
 

SM57 >> SNARE
SENN E902 >> KICK ($200)
CASCADE X-15 PAIR (Ribbons) >> Overheads (Maybe ORTF or XY Positioning) ($900)
Well under budget
#27
8th August 2013
Old 8th August 2013
  #27
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suedesound's Avatar
 

M160's or fatheads for overheads, beta 52 or re20 kick, use your 57 snare. Assuming this has to be 4 channels only. Also agree you'll probably get better results dropping that money on a couple of days at a studio. Also like the ksm32 suggestion if you want to go with condensers for oh's. Random but i've heard good things about kel mics but never had a chance to try any out
#28
9th August 2013
Old 9th August 2013
  #28
The "take your money and book studio time" idea might be your best bet if you aren't experienced enough to have opinions on mics for the sound you are after.

Another take would be to rent/borrow/demo some of the suggestions here and experiment a bit. You'll end up saving a lot of money if you can figure out what works for you rather than buying $1500 worth of mics based on internet suggestions - then re-selling until you find what YOU like.

That said, I would get try a EV868 for close kick, cuz it works 99% of the time. Beyond that, I would opt for a matched pair of mics, because then you have the choice of matched overheads if you want them, while still having the option of recorderman, or one mono overhead and one room mic, etc. Which matched pair depends sooooo much on your tastes and style though... In that price range: Beyer 930's are great SDC's, Stellar CM5's are great LDC's, Cascade Vinjets are nice sounding ribbons...among others.
#29
9th August 2013
Old 9th August 2013
  #29
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timtoonz's Avatar
 

And just for yet another option, since nobody's mentioned the 'Glyn Johns' method, you could get 2 'affordable' LDC's for the GJ setup - (Mikteks, Joly K47s, etc), with either a third of the same on the kick, or a dedicated kick mic like D112, Audix D4, RE20, Senn MD421 etc... and your 57 on the snare for punch 'as needed'.

Many solid sounding rock records have been made with the Glyn Johns method, though measurement and experimentation are critical to making sure you get the phase and kit balance just right.
#30
9th August 2013
Old 9th August 2013
  #30
Gear interested
 

Fun thread! I agree with the Beyer m160 OH and a good dynamic for kick, like a Beyer m88, EV RE20 or a Heil PR40. Is the kit going to be isolated in this room? The room seems kind of live so I don't necessarily see the need for a room mic per se, there's going to be room in the mics no matter what, and even more if you put a limiter on the OH.

Another approach could be something like 2 of the Stellar cm5 LD tube mics in stereo OH (spaced or Blumlein, depending on how wide you want the drums in the mix, pair can be had for $900 new), and a used AKG 414 TL2 ($600 ish on eBay) front of kick, which I've really been enjoying in this capacity lately.

Let us know what you decide on, and how it goes!!
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