The No.1 Website for Pro Audio
 Search This Thread  Search This Forum  Search Reviews  Search Gear Database  Search Gear for sale  Search Gearslutz Go Advanced
Tags: , ,

Drum overhead placement. Condenser Microphones
Old 19th August 2007
  #1
Gear Head
 

Question Drum overhead placement.

Hello. I will soon be doing a recording which involves drums. I am using two omni mics (Avenson STO-2) for my overheads and wanted opinions on how to place them. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated on placement and techniques. Thanks!
Old 20th August 2007
  #2
Gear Head
 

Also, if anyone has pics that would be great too! Thanks guys.
Old 20th August 2007
  #3
Lives for gear
 
Jim vanBergen's Avatar
 

type of music? (rock, metal, jazz, latin, ska...)

location of recording- Studio? Live? Isobooth? Plexi/Clearsonic isolation?

size of kit, number & types of drums & cymbals?

My first classical recording mentor (a grammy winner with dozens of serious, legendary orchestral recordings) gave me some advice that went something like this...

"If you are recording drums, Start out with your schoeps 6' high, 6' apart, 6' back from the performer. THIS is your sonic triangle, your starting point. Now, forget the mics, and while he plays, you Listen in the room, find the perfect place in which you get THE SOUND and THE IMAGE. If it does not exist, find it in your mind. Then go to the control room, put the mics up, listen, then go bacl to the studio and move the mics until you get the sound you are wishing for. Be prepared for this to take quite some time. Don't settle!! Don't settle for anything less than your original goals."

Some kits, players, or types of music are going to change anything you "normally" do in a recording, so that's kind of worthless. I might start in "live rock reinforcement" placement over the cymbals, and move in or out...but you can have a splas, ride, crash, or a second hi-hat or snare that can change the size and spread of the kit drastically.

With the Avensons, you want to make sure the room sounds GREAT. I'd start by understanding the music, instrument and player, then the room. Add absorbtion or reflection as you need, and get the room to sound right, so the omnis are doing what they do best.

Hope this helps!
Old 20th August 2007
  #4
Gear Head
 

Wow, great response. Thanks for this great advice. I'll do a lot of listening before placement.
Old 20th August 2007
  #5
I've had great luck with those very same mics (and omnis in general) in the "ear ring" position...if you don't know that one, it's where you put the mics up just behind the dummer, over his shoulders. Experiment with the angles the mics are pointing (I tend to like to point them out *ever* so slightly.

Try to get your hands on a clean, FAST pre amp, and you'll be in good shape!
Old 22nd August 2007
  #6
Lives for gear
 
Jim vanBergen's Avatar
 

This is an R&B / jazz drummer with a pair of Shure KSM44s in the classic 414 drum OH position. Note the Shure SM81 right on the bell of the ride cymbal (not my call).
Attached Thumbnails
Drum overhead placement.-drum-oh-1.jpg  
Old 22nd August 2007
  #7
Lives for gear
 
Jim vanBergen's Avatar
 

Another...

this is a jazz drummer (Ella Fitzgerald songbook was being performed).

The Hat & OH mics are Sennheiser MKH40s. The OHs are a little on the INSIDE of the triangle; snare has a Senn 504, kick an Audix D6, and rack & floor are Shure Beta98H's.

The OHs being focused straight down, at exactly the same height, same distance from the player as from each other. The inner position is to capture the inside crash cymbal equally as well as the two outer cymbals.
Attached Thumbnails
Drum overhead placement.-drum-oh-2.jpg  
Old 22nd August 2007
  #8
Lives for gear
 
Jim vanBergen's Avatar
 

Sax Mob drums

Two kits here, both old school Shure SM81's.
Attached Thumbnails
Drum overhead placement.-drums-sax-mob.jpg  
Old 22nd August 2007
  #9
Lives for gear
 
Jim vanBergen's Avatar
 

The Maledictions

This is a folky-rock group. The drums mics were selected for recording and shared with the FOH engineer for the house mix. Neumann KM84 on Hat and 184s on OHs. They are higher than normal due to the height of the china cymbal. Because of the height, the ride cymbal was a touch low in the OH mics compared to the others at times, and on ballads with bell work on the ride, the OH mics captured as much overall kit as ride cymbal. So in mixing, I started with loud, compressed stereo OHs ONLY and the added hat & drum mics to the mix instead of starting with kick & snare and adding toms, hat OHs to taste.
Attached Thumbnails
Drum overhead placement.-maledictions-drums.jpg  
Old 22nd August 2007
  #10
Gear Head
 

Wow, these pictures really help. Thanks a lot for these. I've also got a pair of Beyer MC-930's that I will probably use as overheads. Anybody have any experience with these guys? If anyone has any technique/placement suggestions on those mics that would be great. Thanks.
Old 22nd August 2007
  #11
they sound terrible, small and thin.

but.. no, whatever works. you will need to find the sweetspot by listening.

try charteroak S600 microphones. killer on overhead and room.
Old 22nd August 2007
  #12
Lives for gear
 
Jim vanBergen's Avatar
 

That's funny, I don't think Beyer mics sound terrible at all.

To each his own, George.

Of course, how many people want to take a pair of Charter Oaks, or any tube microphone for that matter, out to a live recording for drum OHs?
Old 22nd August 2007
  #13
Gear Head
 

What Im going to do is listen to the room first (I have not even heard the room in which the recording is going to take place). If it sounds decent, Im going with my Avenson Omnis, if not, Im going with the beyers. I would normally just run both, but Im afraid I won't have enough channels for that. It should work out fine though.
Old 22nd August 2007
  #14
Lives for gear
 
Jimbo's Avatar
Thanks for all the eye-candy, Jim.

Are those guys wearing wigs in the first pic?
Old 23rd August 2007
  #15
Lives for gear
 
Jim vanBergen's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jimbo View Post
Thanks for all the eye-candy, Jim.

Are those guys wearing wigs in the first pic?
As a matter of fact....yes, they are. The backing band for Regina Belle all dressed in afro wigs, polyester pants & shirts, platform shoes and 1970's shades.

The second picture was Patti Austin's drummer. Sorry I neglected to mention the acts on those pics!
Old 23rd August 2007
  #16
Gear Head
 

If you guys HAD to choose one pair of mics to use as overheads for rock drumming (not a live recording), would it be the Avenson Omni's or the Beyers?
Old 23rd August 2007
  #17
Lives for gear
 
Jim vanBergen's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pluto View Post
If you guys HAD to choose one pair of mics to use as overheads for rock drumming (not a live recording), would it be the Avenson Omni's or the Beyers?
In a studio, you have the luxury of trying both before committing. Really, it will depend on the sound of the room.

If what you are really looking for is studio drum setups, you should look at some other forums that have covered this topic extensively.

Try this:
Pictures Of Mic'ed Up Drum Kits In The Studio

JvB
Old 23rd August 2007
  #18
Lives for gear
 

I use Beyer MC930s as overheads all the time--in fact, that's all I've been using lately because I like them so much. I don't find them thin at all. They are quick, clear, and capture the whole kit in a balanced manner. I did a jazz session with them last week and the drummer happily exclaimed--that sounds like my drums!--which is exactly what I was trying for.

I often use what is commonly referred to as "Recorderman" technique with them, or sometimes I'll use a spaced pair using the kind of placement that Steve Remote recommends for his M160s. I'll attach a crappy picture; the angle is not the clearest. (The other "overhead" mic in the picture is an AT3031, but I was using it for bongos and auxiliary percussion.) The nice thing about the MC930s is that they have great off axis rejection, so if you have an unpredictable room, or other instruments setup nearby, I'd go for these first before the Avensons.
Attached Thumbnails
Drum overhead placement.-drummics.jpg  
Post Reply

Welcome to the Gearslutz Pro Audio Community!

Registration benefits include:
  • The ability to reply to and create new discussions
  • Access to members-only giveaways & competitions
  • Interact with VIP industry experts in our guest Q&As
  • Access to members-only sub forum discussions
  • Access to members-only Chat Room
  • Get INSTANT ACCESS to the world's best private pro audio Classifieds for only USD $20/year
  • Promote your eBay auctions and Reverb.com listings for free
  • Remove this message!
You need an account to post a reply. Create a username and password below and an account will be created and your post entered.


 
 
Slide to join now Processing…
Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Similar Threads
Thread
Thread Starter / Forum
Replies
Deadmeat / So much gear, so little time
6
rynugz007 / So much gear, so little time
15
slowdive / Low End Theory
32
audioslave / So much gear, so little time
19

Forum Jump
Forum Jump