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How to setup drum overheads? Dynamic Microphones
Old 5th January 2017
  #1
Gear Nut
How to setup drum overheads?

I have tried to record a few projects. I managed to record vocals and guitars (acoustic, electric and bass) with a satisfactory results but I cannot get the drums to sound right.

I i am trying to address all my problems for my next session. I tried to address the problems with my drums: replaced the drum battery heads and tuned the drums; replaced the brass cymbals with decent bronze ones; got a pair of ribbon mics with an external preamp and Compressor; and ported the bass drum to fit a d112 to capture the kick attack.

But I remember noticing phase issues when recording the overheads as I cannot find the way to place them. I remember hearing the cymbals pulsating from 1 side to the other. It seems that if I apply the 3:1 rule I end up with either the mics too close to the cymbals and risk having the crash edge swish past the capsule or I end up having to set the mics far out of the kit which did not sound that great. I ended up scrolling through the Internet and saw a few setups that were not using the 3 to 1 rule. I went for that solution. The drums sounded full but the cymbals especially the ride sounded like a bouncing from left to right.

I actually managed to record using the spaced pair method on a grand piano. I forgot the stereo bar and could not set the mics in x-y so then I decided to go for a spaced pair with the 3 to 1 rule. They sounded a bit un-natural with the big wide image but it was great. I would love to achieve that big wide image on drums. I am not sure how to approach the spaced pair drum overhead and I could use some guidance please.
Old 5th January 2017
  #2
Lives for gear
 

Drum miking is one of the more complex setups you'll encounter as a sound engineer. There are so many interconnected pieces, which are set up to the drummer's ergonomic liking much more than for phase issues or other acoustic concerns, that really the only thing anyone's going to be able to tell you is, experiment. It's really a three-person job; have someone at the kit playing, someone at the board tweaking levels and EQ, and someone in the booth moving mikes. You can't just set it up based on theory and expect good results; more than anything, drum miking is a game of centimeters, and there are variables the theories simply can't take into account, like room reflections and variances in kit element positioning.

Your first problem, however, seems simple; you're over-panning the overheads. While you do have the ability to get some width out of the kit, imagine yourself standing in front of the band on stage, listening to the entire band play, with the edges of the stage forming the sacred equilateral triangle to your head. The drummer's kit, from the floor tom out to his right over to the hat to his left, might take up a third of the width of the set, at most (if it's a small set). You're going to hear his sound from about the same spread of positions. So, if you spread the drums into the stereo image, it should be fairly subtle, no more than a third of the available stereo spread. This will minimize the left-to-right oscillation, which will happen as the cymbals rock on their pivots after a hit, showing their edge and then their face to each mic.

If all you have is two overheads and a kick, check out the Recorderman technique. It's a somewhat unconventional but well-known placement technique that positions one overhead directly over the center of the snare, getting a little of everything especially the cymbals, then the second overhead looks over the drummer's shoulder at the same point on the snare from about the same distance, keeping the snare in phase and also picking up the nearby toms. Adding a kick mic to solidify that fundamental thump will give you a fairly well-balanced mix of all the kit elements that pans fairly well to a faithful image (again, don't over-spread it), without requiring you to spend hours tweaking close-mic positions to resolve phasing issues.

By adding the kick mic, you're also halfway to the more famous Glyn Johns technique, used by its creator on several albums from some of the most well-known classic rock groups in history and copied far and wide. The overhead placement is very similar to Recorderman, then add a kick mic to fatten that thump and a snare mic for more sizzle. SM57s are good snare mics, especially bottom-facing so there's little chance of a stick strike. The Audix i5 and the A-T ATM650 are more durable "fifty-seven killers" with similar application on snare, guitar cabs etc, without the 57's more delicate grille and capsule assembly. All three are $100 mics, so if you have a spare channel on your mixer and you mix drums or guitars regularly, any one of them would be money well spent.

Last edited by Liko; 5th January 2017 at 01:05 AM..
Old 5th January 2017
  #3
Gear Nut
I hard panned the overheads. I'll try to reload the mix and narrow the stereo width. But I placed the mics quite above the cymbals and the cymbals could not exposed the edge towards the mic capsule, especially the ride as it was set lower and never hit hard to rock it. The kit is a 5 piece kit with hi hats ride and 2 crashes. It is a normal size kit I think nothing particularly special. The room is quite damp but the ceiling is relatively low and untreated. I tried to use the spaced pair as the mics point downward avoiding as much as possible room reflections from the ceiling, otherwise the drums sounds good in the room now that I tuned it.
Old 5th January 2017
  #4
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gab_Azz View Post
I have tried to record a few projects. I managed to record vocals and guitars (acoustic, electric and bass) with a satisfactory results but I cannot get the drums to sound right.

I i am trying to address all my problems for my next session. I tried to address the problems with my drums: replaced the drum battery heads and tuned the drums; replaced the brass cymbals with decent bronze ones; got a pair of ribbon mics with an external preamp and Compressor; and ported the bass drum to fit a d112 to capture the kick attack.

But I remember noticing phase issues when recording the overheads as I cannot find the way to place them. I remember hearing the cymbals pulsating from 1 side to the other. It seems that if I apply the 3:1 rule I end up with either the mics too close to the cymbals and risk having the crash edge swish past the capsule or I end up having to set the mics far out of the kit which did not sound that great. I ended up scrolling through the Internet and saw a few setups that were not using the 3 to 1 rule. I went for that solution. The drums sounded full but the cymbals especially the ride sounded like a bouncing from left to right.

I actually managed to record using the spaced pair method on a grand piano. I forgot the stereo bar and could not set the mics in x-y so then I decided to go for a spaced pair with the 3 to 1 rule. They sounded a bit un-natural with the big wide image but it was great. I would love to achieve that big wide image on drums. I am not sure how to approach the spaced pair drum overhead and I could use some guidance please.
No, no, no, no, no!!!! The 3:1 rule DOES NOT apply to ANY stereo mic'ing technique. PERIOD. Let's finally put that myth to bed once and for all. I hear sooooo many people mention the 3:1 rule in regards overhead mics or room mics on drumset... it is completely impossible. There is no way any stereo mic technique can ever adhere to the 3:1 rule, whether it be on drums or piano or choir or a string section or a whole orchestra... Period... get that out of your head.

OK... now that I got that out of the way... here are some pics from drum sessions I've done for you to check out... Sometimes a picture is worth a thousand words... hopefully some of these help... These are all pics that have the overheads in them. There are four setups mainly represented here. Wide Spaced Pair, close spaced pair, XY and then Mono Overhead (or Glyn Johns Isosceles Triangle).

One thing you'll notice, which I picked up from George Massenburg, is that when doing a wide spaced pair, the overhead mics are at an angle to the drumset so one ends up behind behind the floor tom (almost behind the drummer) and the other one ends up being out in front of the left side crash cymbal. That isn't an optical illusion because of camera perspective. I'm doing that on purpose. Instead of centering the OH mics on either the kick OR the snare. Center them on both. Draw an imaginary line in your head that crosses through the center of the snare AND the center of the kick drum as it is lying on it's side. You'll notice that creates a "centerline" that cuts diagonally across the drumset. Place your Overhead mics at 90º angles TO THAT IMAGINARY CENTER LINE. This will give you the best stereo image with the kick AND snare in the center and everything else will fall perfectly around it in the stereo image.

Depending on how wide and big you want the image... you spread the mics out farther or pull them in closer. If you start to pull them in closer so and they start to become closer to each other than they are to the kick and snare... the kick and snare will start to get artificially louder in the stereo image because of the acoustic summing that is happening. To combat that, you can angle the overhead mics OUTWARD. This puts the kick and snare off axis to the mics and makes the mics less sensitive to them and more sensitive to the cymbals and toms. Which helps balance the kick and snare (snare especially) against the rest of the kit. What you will sometimes notice is the snare will be dramatically louder than all of the parts of the drumset in the Overheads... and that is when angling the mics outward so they aren't facing straight down can help turn the snare volume "down" in the overheads in relation to the cymbals and toms. Likewise if the snare isn't loud enough compared to cymbals and toms in the overheads, you can turn them in towards the snare to help increase the snare getting picked up by the overheads.

when recording overheads I STRONGLY recommend measuring the Overhead mics from the snare, from each other, and from the ground up to the mic. You want the mics the EXACT same distance to the snare. You want to make sure the mics are the same height (so you measure from the ground up to the mic... to make sure one isn't 4ft high and the other 5ft high). And then depending on how big a stereo image you want and the sound you are after, you can measure from one mic to the next to make sure they are the same distance from each other than they are from the snare (making an equilateral triangle)... or you can to to space them a little farther apart than they are from the snare... (maybe both mics are 4ft from the snare and 5ft from each other)... or you can bring them closer together (4ft from the snare but only 2 ft or 1ft from each other).

Then... in your daw record the overheads while the drummer wacks the snare as hard as he can a few times... stop... zoom in to the sample level on the waveform... make sure the waveform for the left overhead and the right overhead are aligned. If one side looks like it starts earlier than the other, then that means they aren't perfectly aligned to the snare. If recording at 48KHz or 44.1KHz sampling rates... for every 3 samples the two mics are out of alignment is equal to 1 inch. So if you measure from the start of the left overhead to the right overhead and the left overhead is 6 samples earlier than the right... that means the left overhead mic is almost 2" closer to the snare than the right overhead mic. So go out and move the mics accordingly so that when the drummer wacks the snare drum the transient attack of the hit reaches both overheads at the same time. once you do that... you are good to go and the stereo imaging of the rest of the kit should work out perfectly.

The wider the overhead mics are placed on the drumset, the wider the stereo image is... the cymbals especially start to feel like they are panned hard right and left instead of 10 o'clock and 2 o'clock. With an XY the stereo image isn't as wide... You still get a good image, but it's much more focused in the center and you hear a lot more ring across the stereo image. A crash cymbal on the left side will have a lot of bleed into the right side and so on...

My general "rule of thumb" for myself... if I'm working on a style of music that dictates I use the overheads as the main bulk of the drum sound... then I usually push the overhead mics closer together or do an XY and I have the close mics on the snare, toms and kick turned down a lot in the mix. They are up just enough to add a little attack and sustain to the sound I'm getting from the overheads.

If I'm doing a style of music that dictates I mainly use the sound of the close mics for the drum sound... then I space the OH mics out more to leave more space in the "center" for the close mics, and the OH mics become more like cymbal mics instead of overall drumset mics. And by placing them wide, the cymbal crashes might even be louder in the overheads than the snare is... which is ok since for that style of music the majority of the snare sound will be coming from the close mics on the snare, not the overheads.

Styles of music that usually (but not always) use the Overheads as the main source of the drumset sound are:

Vintage/Classic Rock
Traditional Jazz and Big Band
Old Blues and Soul styles


Styles that use the close mics as the main source of the drumset sound are:

Modern Rock/Metal
Hiphop
Modern R&B and Smooth Jazz
Modern and 70's Funk
Almost everything from the 80's























Old 5th January 2017
  #5
Gear Nut
I measured the distance from the snare, but I did not measure the distance from the ground. Actually the OH near the hi-hat was significantly higher to stay over the kit. Maybe that was one of my main mistakes. Thanks for the pics as these give me a better explanation to where OHs should be. BTW I only have a matched pair of SDC. I have enough sm57s to close mic and a pair of Chinese ribbons for room mics. I was going for a blumlein pair.
Old 5th January 2017
  #6
Lives for gear
 

Derek - Great post. 10/10

OP - Listen to Derek hah. Also the first good drum sound I got was when I used the Recorderman setup. I simply was not well versed enough in drum recording to be attacking spaced pair and 10 mics off the bat. But this setup allowed me to get everything in phase and sounding whole. Start simple and add from there. It also helps when you have a good drumset, new heads, and a good drummer!
Old 5th January 2017
  #7
Lives for gear
 
edva's Avatar
[QUOTE=Etch-A-Sketch;12354339]No, no, no, no, no!!!! The 3:1 rule DOES NOT apply to ANY stereo mic'ing technique. PERIOD. Let's finally put that myth to bed once and for all. I hear sooooo many people mention the 3:1 rule in regards overhead mics or room mics on drumset... it is completely impossible. There is no way any stereo mic technique can ever adhere to the 3:1 rule, whether it be on drums or piano or choir or a string section or a whole orchestra... Period... get that out of your head.

OK... now that I got that out of the way... here are some pics from drum sessions I've done for you to check out... Sometimes a picture is worth a thousand words... hopefully some of these help... These are all pics that have the overheads in them. There are four setups mainly represented here. Wide Spaced Pair, close spaced pair, XY and then Mono Overhead (or Glyn Johns Isosceles Triangle).

One thing you'll notice, which I picked up from George Massenburg, is that when doing a wide spaced pair, the overhead mics are at an angle to the drumset so one ends up behind behind the floor tom (almost behind the drummer) and the other one ends up being out in front of the left side crash cymbal. That isn't an optical illusion because of camera perspective. I'm doing that on purpose. Instead of centering the OH mics on either the kick OR the snare. Center them on both. Draw an imaginary line in your head that crosses through the center of the snare AND the center of the kick drum as it is lying on it's side. You'll notice that creates a "centerline" that cuts diagonally across the drumset. Place your Overhead mics at 90º angles TO THAT IMAGINARY CENTER LINE. This will give you the best stereo image with the kick AND snare in the center and everything else will fall perfectly around it in the stereo image.

Depending on how wide and big you want the image... you spread the mics out farther or pull them in closer. If you start to pull them in closer so and they start to become closer to each other than they are to the kick and snare... the kick and snare will start to get artificially louder in the stereo image because of the acoustic summing that is happening. To combat that, you can angle the overhead mics OUTWARD. This puts the kick and snare off axis to the mics and makes the mics less sensitive to them and more sensitive to the cymbals and toms. Which helps balance the kick and snare (snare especially) against the rest of the kit. What you will sometimes notice is the snare will be dramatically louder than all of the parts of the drumset in the Overheads... and that is when angling the mics outward so they aren't facing straight down can help turn the snare volume "down" in the overheads in relation to the cymbals and toms. Likewise if the snare isn't loud enough compared to cymbals and toms in the overheads, you can turn them in towards the snare to help increase the snare getting picked up by the overheads.

when recording overheads I STRONGLY recommend measuring the Overhead mics from the snare, from each other, and from the ground up to the mic. You want the mics the EXACT same distance to the snare. You want to make sure the mics are the same height (so you measure from the ground up to the mic... to make sure one isn't 4ft high and the other 5ft high). And then depending on how big a stereo image you want and the sound you are after, you can measure from one mic to the next to make sure they are the same distance from each other than they are from the snare (making an equilateral triangle)... or you can to to space them a little farther apart than they are from the snare... (maybe both mics are 4ft from the snare and 5ft from each other)... or you can bring them closer together (4ft from the snare but only 2 ft or 1ft from each other).

Then... in your daw record the overheads while the drummer wacks the snare as hard as he can a few times... stop... zoom in to the sample level on the waveform... make sure the waveform for the left overhead and the right overhead are aligned. If one side looks like it starts earlier than the other, then that means they aren't perfectly aligned to the snare. If recording at 48KHz or 44.1KHz sampling rates... for every 3 samples the two mics are out of alignment is equal to 1 inch. So if you measure from the start of the left overhead to the right overhead and the left overhead is 6 samples earlier than the right... that means the left overhead mic is almost 2" closer to the snare than the right overhead mic. So go out and move the mics accordingly so that when the drummer wacks the snare drum the transient attack of the hit reaches both overheads at the same time. once you do that... you are good to go and the stereo imaging of the rest of the kit should work out perfectly.

The wider the overhead mics are placed on the drumset, the wider the stereo image is... the cymbals especially start to feel like they are panned hard right and left instead of 10 o'clock and 2 o'clock. With an XY the stereo image isn't as wide... You still get a good image, but it's much more focused in the center and you hear a lot more ring across the stereo image. A crash cymbal on the left side will have a lot of bleed into the right side and so on...

My general "rule of thumb" for myself... if I'm working on a style of music that dictates I use the overheads as the main bulk of the drum sound... then I usually push the overhead mics closer together or do an XY and I have the close mics on the snare, toms and kick turned down a lot in the mix. They are up just enough to add a little attack and sustain to the sound I'm getting from the overheads.

If I'm doing a style of music that dictates I mainly use the sound of the close mics for the drum sound... then I space the OH mics out more to leave more space in the "center" for the close mics, and the OH mics become more like cymbal mics instead of overall drumset mics. And by placing them wide, the cymbal crashes might even be louder in the overheads than the snare is... which is ok since for that style of music the majority of the snare sound will be coming from the close mics on the snare, not the overheads.

Styles of music that usually (but not always) use the Overheads as the main source of the drumset sound are:

Vintage/Classic Rock
Traditional Jazz and Big Band
Old Blues and Soul styles


Styles that use the close mics as the main source of the drumset sound are:

Modern Rock/Metal
Hiphop
Modern R&B and Smooth Jazz
Modern and 70's Funk
Almost everything from the 80's

Now that is a most excellent post! Not much, if anything, technically that I can add to that. I will only say that, _subjectively, my strong preference is for a closely spaced center pair of overheads, instead of a wide-spaced pair. I find the phase coherence much more agreeable, to me, that way; and I also find excessively "wide" drums to sound very un-natural and distracting within a mix. YMMV of course. Good luck.
Old 5th January 2017
  #8
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gab_Azz View Post
I measured the distance from the snare, but I did not measure the distance from the ground. Actually the OH near the hi-hat was significantly higher to stay over the kit. Maybe that was one of my main mistakes. Thanks for the pics as these give me a better explanation to where OHs should be. BTW I only have a matched pair of SDC. I have enough sm57s to close mic and a pair of Chinese ribbons for room mics. I was going for a blumlein pair.
yup, you can see in the pics that is what I do a lot. Most of the time (but not all of the time) I prefer SDCs as the overhead mics... and you can see I have a black and a silver Royer R121s out in front of the drumset at about chest height in Blumlein in a lot of the pictures. In one picture I'm using a pair of vintage C12s in the same configuration (I set the C12s to Fig 8 and used them instead of the royers).

I do that for most rock and pop sessions. for jazz sessions I usually don't do that. Sometimes for jazz sessions or classic (50's-60's) rock session I'll use an LDC as an overhead or do the triangle setup. Sometimes I'll also use an XY with SDCs as overheads for jazz too.
Old 5th January 2017
  #9
Gear Nut
Quote:
Originally Posted by Liko View Post
Drum miking is one of the more complex setups you'll encounter as a sound engineer. There are so many interconnected pieces, which are set up to the drummer's ergonomic liking much more than for phase issues or other acoustic concerns, that really the only thing anyone's going to be able to tell you is, experiment. It's really a three-person job; have someone at the kit playing, someone at the board tweaking levels and EQ, and someone in the booth moving mikes. You can't just set it up based on theory and expect good results; more than anything, drum miking is a game of centimeters, and there are variables the theories simply can't take into account, like room reflections and variances in kit element positioning.

Your first problem, however, seems simple; you're over-panning the overheads. While you do have the ability to get some width out of the kit, imagine yourself standing in front of the band on stage, listening to the entire band play, with the edges of the stage forming the sacred equilateral triangle to your head. The drummer's kit, from the floor tom out to his right over to the hat to his left, might take up a third of the width of the set, at most (if it's a small set). You're going to hear his sound from about the same spread of positions. So, if you spread the drums into the stereo image, it should be fairly subtle, no more than a third of the available stereo spread. This will minimize the left-to-right oscillation, which will happen as the cymbals rock on their pivots after a hit, showing their edge and then their face to each mic.

If all you have is two overheads and a kick, check out the Recorderman technique. It's a somewhat unconventional but well-known placement technique that positions one overhead directly over the center of the snare, getting a little of everything especially the cymbals, then the second overhead looks over the drummer's shoulder at the same point on the snare from about the same distance, keeping the snare in phase and also picking up the nearby toms. Adding a kick mic to solidify that fundamental thump will give you a fairly well-balanced mix of all the kit elements that pans fairly well to a faithful image (again, don't over-spread it), without requiring you to spend hours tweaking close-mic positions to resolve phasing issues.

By adding the kick mic, you're also halfway to the more famous Glyn Johns technique, used by its creator on several albums from some of the most well-known classic rock groups in history and copied far and wide. The overhead placement is very similar to Recorderman, then add a kick mic to fatten that thump and a snare mic for more sizzle. SM57s are good snare mics, especially bottom-facing so there's little chance of a stick strike. The Audix i5 and the A-T ATM650 are more durable "fifty-seven killers" with similar application on snare, guitar cabs etc, without the 57's more delicate grille and capsule assembly. All three are $100 mics, so if you have a spare channel on your mixer and you mix drums or guitars regularly, any one of them would be money well spent.
I re-opened the project and reduced the drum panning from 100% to 60%. Got enough spread to sound stereo and got rid of the ride bouncing. With the hard panned guitars the project sounder better than it was before. Thanks!
Old 5th January 2017
  #10
Gear Nut
Quote:
Originally Posted by Etch-A-Sketch View Post
yup, you can see in the pics that is what I do a lot. Most of the time (but not all of the time) I prefer SDCs as the overhead mics... and you can see I have a black and a silver Royer R121s out in front of the drumset at about chest height in Blumlein in a lot of the pictures. In one picture I'm using a pair of vintage C12s in the same configuration (I set the C12s to Fig 8 and used them instead of the royers).

I do that for most rock and pop sessions. for jazz sessions I usually don't do that. Sometimes for jazz sessions or classic (50's-60's) rock session I'll use an LDC as an overhead or do the triangle setup. Sometimes I'll also use an XY with SDCs as overheads for jazz too.
Thank you the images were very Helpful! I noticed that you place the overhead at the hi-hat side outside of the kick to keep the right distances. I have setup the drums and tomorrow I should experiment a bit.
Old 7th January 2017
  #11
Gear Nut
Thank you I managed to get quite a decent sound. I placed a SM57 as a snare mic and a D112 inside kick. I placed a series x1 above the snare and a Chinese ribbon next to the floor Tom as I do not own a pair of LDCs. The GLynn John's method worked great I only wished I had another LDC. But this technique did not offer a big stereo image. I also placed a pair of SDCs in ORTF about 6 feet from the ground above the drum throne. These had better/wider stereo image but as they were pointing at the walls in got too much reflections from the walls. I would describe my results as the Glyn Johns method very midrange punchy sounds like the 70s. The ORTF had more of a modern metal vibe with more cymbal detail and wider stereo image.

I ended up using the Glyn Johns as overheads. I did not discard the ORTF, I slammed them with compression and gated them with the snare drum.

I am not happy with the kick sound. I have a felt beater and the kick sounds like a rnb kick with a lot of boom and little attack. I was considering a battery head patch and replacing the beater but I have no clue on which beater to buy.
Old 7th January 2017
  #12
Lives for gear
 
edva's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gab_Azz View Post
Thank you I managed to get quite a decent sound. I placed a SM57 as a snare mic and a D112 inside kick. I placed a series x1 above the snare and a Chinese ribbon next to the floor Tom as I do not own a pair of LDCs. The GLynn John's method worked great I only wished I had another LDC. But this technique did not offer a big stereo image. I also placed a pair of SDCs in ORTF about 6 feet from the ground above the drum throne. These had better/wider stereo image but as they were pointing at the walls in got too much reflections from the walls. I would describe my results as the Glyn Johns method very midrange punchy sounds like the 70s. The ORTF had more of a modern metal vibe with more cymbal detail and wider stereo image.

I ended up using the Glyn Johns as overheads. I did not discard the ORTF, I slammed them with compression and gated them with the snare drum.

I am not happy with the kick sound. I have a felt beater and the kick sounds like a rnb kick with a lot of boom and little attack. I was considering a battery head patch and replacing the beater but I have no clue on which beater to buy.
Wood beaters are a nice middle ground between felt and plastic. The latter of course gives sharpest attack if that's what you want. Good luck.
Old 7th January 2017
  #13
Gear Nut
Quote:
Originally Posted by edva View Post
Wood beaters are a nice middle ground between felt and plastic. The latter of course gives sharpest attack if that's what you want. Good luck.
Thanks! Is the Mapex Tri-Tonal Bass Drum Beater good?
Old 7th January 2017
  #14
Lives for gear
 
edva's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gab_Azz View Post
Thanks! Is the Mapex Tri-Tonal Bass Drum Beater good?
That looks brilliant! I am going to get one myself, always something new to learn on GS!
Old 26th January 2017
  #15
Gear Nut
Quote:
Originally Posted by edva View Post
That looks brilliant! I am going to get one myself, always something new to learn on GS!
Thank you for the suggestion, the wooden beater worked great.
Old 26th January 2017
  #16
Gear Nut
Quote:
Originally Posted by Etch-A-Sketch View Post
yup, you can see in the pics that is what I do a lot. Most of the time (but not all of the time) I prefer SDCs as the overhead mics... and you can see I have a black and a silver Royer R121s out in front of the drumset at about chest height in Blumlein in a lot of the pictures. In one picture I'm using a pair of vintage C12s in the same configuration (I set the C12s to Fig 8 and used them instead of the royers).

I do that for most rock and pop sessions. for jazz sessions I usually don't do that. Sometimes for jazz sessions or classic (50's-60's) rock session I'll use an LDC as an overhead or do the triangle setup. Sometimes I'll also use an XY with SDCs as overheads for jazz too.
Thank you for your input. Measuring the overheads from the floor seemed to fix my Problem!
Old 26th January 2017
  #17
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gab_Azz View Post
Thank you for your input. Measuring the overheads from the floor seemed to fix my Problem!
Awesome! Glad I could help!
Old 26th January 2017
  #18
Lives for gear
 
norfolk martin's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Etch-A-Sketch View Post
No, no, no, no, no!!!! The 3:1 rule DOES NOT apply to ANY stereo mic'ing technique. PERIOD. Let's finally put that myth to bed once and for all. I hear sooooo many people mention the 3:1 rule in regards overhead mics or room mics on drumset... it is completely impossible. There is no way any stereo mic technique can ever adhere to the 3:1 rule, whether it be on drums or piano or choir or a string section or a whole orchestra... Period... get that out of your head.

AHA!!! Glad to hear someone say that. That idea always did bug me.

You have 88 piano strings in 88 different physical positions over a length of about 4 feet, and yet you can somehow retain a 3:1 distance ratio to EACH INDIVIDUAL STRING? It would seem that only one of the 88 strings is in the correct "golden ratio" distance to the mics


Ditto with a violin section taking of eight feet of floor space.

PS: is the guy with the snare at a steep angle away for the stool using some sort of traditional jazz technique?
Old 27th January 2017
  #19
Lives for gear
 
edva's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by norfolk martin View Post
AHA!!! Glad to hear someone say that. That idea always did bug me.

You have 88 piano strings in 88 different physical positions over a length of about 4 feet, and yet you can somehow retain a 3:1 distance ratio to EACH INDIVIDUAL STRING? It would seem that only one of the 88 strings is in the correct "golden ratio" distance to the mics


Ditto with a violin section taking of eight feet of floor space.

PS: is the guy with the snare at a steep angle away for the stool using some sort of traditional jazz technique?
the 3 to 1 ratio is _not a "golden ratio". It is the _minimum ratio. You can exceed it, but should not use less than that. You don't have to hit it spot on. It is not a "golden ratio" in that sense.
Old 28th January 2017
  #20
Quote:
Originally Posted by norfolk martin View Post
PS: is the guy with the snare at a steep angle away for the stool using some sort of traditional jazz technique?
yup. It was for a 1950's cool jazz album. drummer was using traditional grip and so it's easier to tilt the snare that way to match the grip of the left hand. See the video below as an example

Old 28th January 2017
  #21
Lives for gear
Listen for it when you set them up.

When setting up any mic (other than vocals) the best thing is to get the mic going through headphones and listed to the source as you place the mic.

Then record 20 seconds of the source and check how it sounds.

rinse and repeat until it's right.
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