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SM81's on toms Condenser Microphones
Old 2nd September 2011
  #1
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andrew montreal's Avatar
SM81's on toms

Whodathunkit?

I'd actually stopped using my SM81's entirely over the past few years. I was even getting ready to sell them But the other day I was getting a little tired of the mid-range peak of the MD421's so I tried a bunch of different mics on the toms and then voilà... the SM81's totally surprised me.

Anyone ever try?
Old 2nd September 2011
  #2
Gear Maniac
 

Nice. Yeah I never really liked the 421s on toms. I've found amazing results with U89s, we happen to have 4 of them lying around the studio that don't get used much. Come to think of it, I've never seen our SM81s get used either. I'll have to check that out.
Old 2nd September 2011
  #3
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414s work surprisingly well also.
Old 2nd September 2011
  #4
Are you guys all gating/strip silencing your toms? I find that the real benefit to using a nice condensor on toms is if you're not gating and going with the bleed of those mics. 421's sound great, but I hate the sound of the bleed in them.
Old 2nd September 2011
  #5
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andrew montreal's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by jordanvoth View Post
Are you guys all gating/strip silencing your toms? I find that the real benefit to using a nice condensor on toms is if you're not gating and going with the bleed of those mics. 421's sound great, but I hate the sound of the bleed in them.
Personally, I gate the toms. I get enough cymbals and hi hat from the OH's, room mics, and snare mic. Also, admittedly I'm not a big fan of the way the ride and crash sound coming from off-axis with the SM81's. But damn... the tone of the toms is crazy. I've never gotten such a round, warm, in your face sound from an MD421's. And even when I EQ out some of the lows, it still sounds beautiful.
Old 2nd September 2011
  #6
I don't own or have much experience with SM81's but I was looking at another pair of SDC's for hihat and ride duties. I currently have C42's, was thinking maybe of getting LDC's and moving the C42's to HH/Ride. Decisions, decisions. What kind of placement are you using with the SM81?
Old 2nd September 2011
  #7
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I have done a few tests and found that I like any condenser over 421s. sm81s included. I also have a pair of beyer mc930s. I have not tried much else but I was thinking to try the atm side adress ones or the shure side address tom mics. FWIW I liked the mc930s over the 81s on toms, but I prefer the 81s on overheads. The 81s seem brighter than the 930s, which ironically makes the 81s sound better on bass cab, to my ears for the sound I am going for. I also like to gate toms, I use kepex for that. This makes the rest of the mics sound better by getting rid of the bleed, and also lets me tailor the decay of the tom hit, which is really useful if the tuning goes and there is a weird ring going on. For placement, I have found on toms that it sounds best pointed at the center of the skin, at a 45 degree angle. That is just my preference and it is likely to change next week. strangely enough, I prefer the snare mic to point between the center and edge of the skin. The only way to find your preferences is to experiment. Lately I have been using mounted mic clips and its strange because they vibrate. Especially the mc930 clips with the elastic suspension... I am curious of peoples preferences of mic stands or clip-ons. I like the clippies only because it takes up less floor space, but I have heard both opinions on this site. Oh yah, one last edit. I recently bought a d112 and hated it on kick....but it makes a frigging sweet low tom mic.
Old 2nd September 2011
  #8
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Eganmedia's Avatar
There was a time when I used only dynamics like 421s or 441s on toms. Condensers were too fragile and scarce. When my mic locker grew I started using 414s. Then a couple years ago I heard a kit miked with EV/ Blue Cardinals. Sam Ash was blowing them out for under a hundred bucks. I bought 4. They sound awesome and fit where a lot of other mics won't.


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Old 3rd September 2011
  #9
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axisdreamer's Avatar
even better than the 81 on toms is the atm450 side address mics,they live on my toms 24/7..
Old 3rd September 2011
  #10
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studio825's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by axisdreamer View Post
even better than the 81 on toms is the atm450 side address mics,they live on my toms 24/7..
The mid range bump in these mics had got be the worst sound mid in the world.I owned a pair and sold them quick.The noise level is horrible!
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