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Miking toms
Old 4th July 2009
  #31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by creative.control View Post
I favour CAD M179s in hypercardiod, with -20 pad engaged, I very rarely need to eq, comp or gate my toms now, I usually just leave them flat, mic placement is important too.
i bought a pair of these just for this purpose, but thanks to a couple lousy drummers in the past year, they're both nearly beaten to bits. Grill is totally opened up on both of them after only a few mishaps.... they sound good for the price, but definitely not built to last. not all of us get to work with great drummers all the time...
Old 4th July 2009
  #32
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I have 4 ADK S7`s that work great on a lot of things. I frequently use them on toms. The 18db pab on them is great when doing this.

Thomas
Old 4th July 2009
  #33
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Drumsound's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fletcher View Post
Many [MANY!!] years ago I dropped by a session to visit a friend who was engineering at Skip Sailor's in helLAy... he was mic'ing the toms with TELEFUNKEN ELA M 251 E's... the e22S's aren't quite sales tax on those bad boys.

It all depends on what you have and where you feel like using it.
I try other things and get good results. But I always seem to go back to 421s. Big dumb rock toms work for me!
Old 4th July 2009
  #34
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421, 441 or Beyer M201 are doing it for me mostly. Occasionally I tried MG UM71s since all the other stuff was in use elsewhere but they were too realistic - well, the drummer was not that good and that´s what was audible in the end. With good drummers, kit and tuning they are great for sure. But in that case what would not be great?
Old 5th July 2009
  #35
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I think Fletcher needs another holiday.

421's sound amazing on toms, simple as that! Love 'em. Audix D2's are great on rack toms! They're cheap and as good as the 421's.

I prefere the sound of the D112 or a condenser on floor toms.

What works for me is doing the Stav trick of moving around the room hitting the floor tom to find its placement sweetspot and building your kit around that. And then - tune your rack toms in place (to the room)! Viola great toms every time.

When I get chance, I do it at gigs too... just tuning the rack toms in place that is.

Peace,
cortisol
Old 5th July 2009
  #36
Lives for gear
I bet those Josephons sound real good on toms, but for that kind of scratch, they better be first choice for many other tasks as well. I do like the Geffel's on floor tom. Never had more then on of them to use on other toms. The Gefell sounds real good on electric guitar. It also works well on vocals.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fletcher View Post
If I'm looking for "phasey" / "washy" cymbals leaking into my tom tracks [even if it's low level] MD-421's are the best!!!

If I'm looking for great tom sounds then usually Josephson e22S's top and bottom mixed to two tracks through an API 3124MB+

Gefell UM-71's are great too.
Old 5th July 2009
  #37
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Quote:
Originally Posted by norman_nomad View Post
Some things that have worked for me...

Positioning:

- Position the mic so the diaphragm it's just peaking over the rim of the tom pointed flat across the tom or pointed slightly at an angle towards the center of the head. Flat across the rim will capture more shell tone, angled will capture more stick hit and "thunk".

- Hold your hand in a fist - this is the approximate height the mic should sit above the rim. Adjust by ear and find a place where the proximity effect gives the tom some weight.

- Point the tom mics towards the snare for additional snare reinforcement.


Tuning/Setup:

- For kits with multiple toms, tune them in musical intervals. 4ths or 5ths. Use a tuner to tune each lug if you have to. Something like 10"=E, 12"=C#, 13"=A#, 14"=G, 16"=E works well for rock. Heavy genres tend to have lower tuned toms which produce less note and more smack. Tuning your toms musically even with lower pitches is still important.

- Top head + bottom head tuned to the same pitch delivers a sustaining pure tone. Most modern heavy genre's have toms which have the top head tuned slightly lower than the bottom head to achieve that pitch bending 'doo' sound. One technique is to tune both heads to the same pitch so that you get a even pure tone, then drop the top head by a semi-tone or by ear until you get the right amount of pitch bend. You'll lose some sustain, but this is generally preferable in modern music. Lowering the pitch of your top head equally across the toms will still maintain their musical coherence.

- I usually prefer single ply heads for toms in recordings (even heavy genres). They will wear out quickly but they produce more smack/tone. They require more disciplined tuning efforts however.

- Hit them hard.


Mix:

- For modern stuff: Big bass boost for size, big low-mid cut for clarity, big upper mid boost for smack/stick sound. Be careful with 8k and above as too much will make them sound too 'clicky/flappy'. Compress/Limit to taste. Pan aggressively.

- Modern genres tend to require unnatural separation between instruments so you may end up gating the toms. If you're applying extreme processing the bleed may not work anyways. Don't hesitate to experiment with some bleed however... the toms can often help glue together the kit in a nice and unexpected way, especially if your completely replacing kick/snare. In some cases it may work to your advantage to duplicate the tom tracks and process them specifically for the best 'bleed' sound and then include the the other gate/processed tom tracks for punch.

- Automation + Transient Designer is your friend.

- Don't be afraid of reverb.
I can second all of that.
Old 5th July 2009
  #38
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AudioWonderland View Post
Probably an unpopular approach but I think the toms sound more realistic if you just back whatever mic you use off the head 3-6 inches depending.

Probably won't work for everything but I like the result. But then I often don't mic them at at all and just roll with the kick/snare and OH's
Could second that one too.
Old 5th July 2009
  #39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by narcoman View Post
...done it with 67s a couple of time... but it's overkill
overkill? not really if it sounds good
Old 5th July 2009
  #40
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ROCKER STUDIOS's Avatar
I agree with "its all in the tuning" I dont have enough mics to be to opinionated but senn 421 work great for me or even a d112 on a floor tom
Old 5th July 2009
  #41
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edvdr76's Avatar
Usually 421's or 57's are good choices for toms. I think if you can't get a good sound going with those mics then maybe what you need is a different drummer. Tried some Neumann TLM-103's once on toms and altough the sound was pretty cool, the tradeoff was that there was too much leakage into them from the rest of the kit..........
Old 5th July 2009
  #42
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fletcher View Post
Many [MANY!!] years ago I dropped by a session to visit a friend who was engineering at Skip Sailor's in helLAy... he was mic'ing the toms with TELEFUNKEN ELA M 251 E's... the e22S's aren't quite sales tax on those bad boys.

It all depends on what you have and where you feel like using it.
I did just that in Schnee's studio back in '92 ...he has a load of M251's ...and M49's for overheads etc.
It was even John Robinson drumming...but I dunno...it wasn't all that easy to mix afterwards (compared to a traditional 421 setup).

It sounded great...but in a dense pop arrangement, it didn't cut through very well.
Old 6th July 2009
  #43
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Quote:
Originally Posted by therecordinghous View Post
Well, just to be the antagonist, I use 421's all the time and get great sounds. I dont understand why people cant. Maybe people are just burnt out on the sound.

I have 3 DW toms. A 10, 12, and 15. All tuned to their respective note. I may tune them down a bit, depending on the song, but never higher.

I put the 421 body at 90 degrees to the drum head, about 1" in, 1" off. This actually keeps your mic from getting hit, as it is perpendicular to the drum head.

Also, dont underestimate the power of MOVING the kit. Find a spot in the room where the bass drum is just huge, the toms will sound good there too.
Yeah man, I'm with you on that. I roll off some of the bottom with the M-S switch on the 421 when I stick em that close and it works like a charm. I dunno, I've heard some pretty bad tom sounds with 421's from other people and I don't how they do it. I mean you have to TRY to be that crappy. Maybe it's the room/cymbals/OH placements? I don't know.
Old 6th July 2009
  #44
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Tom Hakala's Avatar
 

Well... e604 with the clamp top and sm57 bottom (middle of the tom). Sm57 top is as good, but I rarely have the space for so many stands. And those e604 are nice and small. Tuning is the key for success here.. and a good player won't hurt it :D
Old 6th July 2009
  #45
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Any success I've had recording Tom's has 100% relied on a good drummer and a nice Tom. After that the only "wow" moment I've had is using an re20 on floor tom. The best low-end I've heard on Floor Tom ever. Otherwise 57/421 are both adequate, one being a little "vintage sounding."

There are so many choices though, I can see what it would be hard to nail this down. I can't even agree in my own head as to what a good tom sound is. It's very song/genre specific, and again as long as the guy playing the kit understands the space he's supposed to occupy, 95% of the work is done for you.
Old 6th July 2009
  #46
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Daedalus77's Avatar
I'm with Lord Bunny on this one. With toms more than anything, a successful sound has depended on the drummer being competent. And the kit sounding good in the room, being tuned properly, and so forth. (And by "good" and "properly" I mean appropriate to the song, arrangement, and desired aesthetic.)

I've found success with the ubiquitous 421s and lately with the Audix series (D2, D4, D6); I've also liked D112 (which I really don't like on kick) and RE20 on floor tom. Also used TLM103, TLM49, and even a couple of UMT70S (with someone I knew well and trusted not to kill them).

Containing cymbal bleed is really about placement and the drummer's technique, isn't it? (And whether or not you want aforementioned bleed.)

I don't use hardware gates, but some software gates are useful (I like the Waves SSL stuff, actually), and I will also edit around the toms as necessary (though not always). Done properly, it doesn't have to sound unnatural.

No one has so far mentioned sample "augmentation" (please don't assault me). I don't like it, but if the producer wants a certain sound that would require it, well... that's what we do, right?
Old 17th October 2018
  #47
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fletcher View Post
Many [MANY!!] years ago I dropped by a session to visit a friend who was engineering at Skip Sailor's in helLAy... he was mic'ing the toms with TELEFUNKEN ELA M 251 E's... the e22S's aren't quite sales tax on those bad boys.

It all depends on what you have and where you feel like using it.
Those toms must have sounded nice.
Old 17th October 2018
  #48
member no 666
 
Fletcher's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Snapchat2314715 View Post
Those toms must have sounded nice.
Between the tuning, and the drummer... a 3 mic setup would have been more than sufficient. You can't mic your way out of a "not great" tuning or a "not great" drummer.

Peace
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