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need drum mic recommendations Condenser Microphones
Old 30th August 2007
  #1
Gear Maniac
 
TocaLaGuitara's Avatar
 

need drum mic recommendations

Well, I am looking to buy my first set of drum mics, and I'm having quite a difficult time deciding which mics to get, so I was hoping you might have some suggestions. I am trying to keep the total cost for mics around $1000-1200, but having some difficulty because I want mics that sound decent. Here's what I'm looking into, and I've placed *'s next to my favorites. I would most likely be recording rock and metal, but also probably singer/songwriter stuff, so I need versatility. Any advice you can provide would definitely be appreciated.


Kick Drum
Audio-Technica ATM250DE
*Audix D6
Sennheiser e602
ElectroVoice RE20

Toms
Sennheiser e604
EV N/D468
CAD M179
Audix D2/D4

Overheads
*sE Electronics SE3 stereo pair
Audio-Technica ATM450
*AKG C451 (love their sound, but prob out of my budget)
Oktava MK-012
Studio Projects C4


My main concerns are having a great kick mic and great pair of overheads. The toms don't have to be stellar, just usable, and I already have an SM57 for snare.

Warren's sound clips have been quite useful in helping me evaluate many of these mics, but I still have not heard the ATM250DE or e602 yet, so I can't make a final decision on either, but I really like the 250 based on its dual-diaphragm concept.

Also, although I think the sound of the e604's is decent, they're kinda a one-use mic. I'd preffer to have something that can be mounted on a stand and used on a bass amp or for horns or other various sources.
Old 30th August 2007
  #2
Lives for gear
 
lpkyer's Avatar
 

Kick Drum
Audio-Technica ATM25

Toms
(2) CAD M179

Overheads
Avenson Audio ST0-2

Audix i5 on snare...
Old 30th August 2007
  #3
Lives for gear
 

For the kick drum I use an AT AE2500. It's a dual element condenser/dynamic mic, very useful in a lot of situations. The dynamic element provides the classic body while the condenser tends to pick up more of the shell resonance and the "click" of the beater. I bought mine used on ebay for 190$ , quite resonable.

Talking overheads I've heard quite a few people raving about peluso the CEMC6's and the bottom line was always "big bang for the buck". Even if I'm not a big fun of SDC for this application I guess they are worth a look

Hope this helps
Old 30th August 2007
  #4
Gear Head
 
WannaBStudioNut's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by TocaLaGuitara View Post
Well, I am looking to buy my first set of drum mics, and I'm having quite a difficult time deciding which mics to get, so I was hoping you might have some suggestions. I am trying to keep the total cost for mics around $1000-1200, but having some difficulty because I want mics that sound decent. Here's what I'm looking into, and I've placed *'s next to my favorites. I would most likely be recording rock and metal, but also probably singer/songwriter stuff, so I need versatility. Any advice you can provide would definitely be appreciated.


Kick Drum
Audio-Technica ATM250DE
*Audix D6
Sennheiser e602
ElectroVoice RE20

Toms
Sennheiser e604
EV N/D468
CAD M179
Audix D2/D4

Overheads
*sE Electronics SE3 stereo pair
Audio-Technica ATM450
*AKG C451 (love their sound, but prob out of my budget)
Oktava MK-012
Studio Projects C4


My main concerns are having a great kick mic and great pair of overheads. The toms don't have to be stellar, just usable, and I already have an SM57 for snare.

Warren's sound clips have been quite useful in helping me evaluate many of these mics, but I still have not heard the ATM250DE or e602 yet, so I can't make a final decision on either, but I really like the 250 based on its dual-diaphragm concept.

Also, although I think the sound of the e604's is decent, they're kinda a one-use mic. I'd preffer to have something that can be mounted on a stand and used on a bass amp or for horns or other various sources.
Kick

RE 20 or ATM 25. I love these 2 Mic's.

Toms

I've been getting great results with the Audix D2's on the Rack Toms, and lately i've been putting the Audix D6 on the Floor Toms...Or even more of the good ole SM57's.

OH

I just got a sE Electronics sE 3 Sterio Pair. (You can never have enough pencil condenser microphones lying around) . I got them a few days ago. Going to use them on a Session tomorrow. Be interesting to see how they go. I've heard some good things though.

Cheers Wannabe.
Old 30th August 2007
  #5
Jai guru deva om
 
warhead's Avatar
 

ATM450 on overheads, CAD M179 on toms, Beyerdynamic Opus99 on kick & you're cookin' with fire. If you need a hi-hat mic, the AT3031 has kept me pleased for the past few years. 57 on snare is a classic sound that can't be sad is ever "bad", but I'd still move to an i5 if possible.

I love the Avenson on drums, but for rock / metal stuff I would not want to be in an omni-only situation! Those are very natural mics that sound great on anything really, but the ATM450 fits your needs better here in my opinion.

My $.02

War
Old 30th August 2007
  #6
Lives for gear
 
BLueROom's Avatar
 

audix d2s on rack toms, d4 on floor toms, d6 on kick, 57 or i5 on snare, GT44s on OHs. I'm just in love with the groove tubes GT44 tube mics on OHs, they tend to smooth things out just right. Audix on drums is a match made in heaven. GREAT bang for the buck.
Old 30th August 2007
  #7
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octatonic's Avatar
Buy used and you'll be ok.

Kik: Beyer M88 and RE20
Snare: Beyer 201 and Sennheiser 441
Toms: Sennheiser 421's.
Overheads: 2x AKG 451's

You can swap the RE20 and 441 around depending on the project- sometimes I use the RE20 on snare as well.
This will be tricky to get under $1200 but you can start with the 451's, 421's, 201 and M88 and get the others later.
The 441 is a particularly useful bright sounding mic that compliments the darker 201 for snare.
Don't skimp on the overheads- there is a pair of 451's in the classifieds for $550 at the moment.
Old 30th August 2007
  #8
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dasoundjunkie's Avatar
 

Get really great results with
Kick- e602 mixed with a Sub-Kick
Snare Heil- pr20 top and bottom
Toms -ATM 25 (never found anything better and as mentioned before also a good kick mic
Over Heads- Condenser: Earthworks SR78. Ribbon:Cascade Fat Head II( I've got a bright room)
Room- Cascade X-15 Stereo Ribbon
Heard that the TS-1 from Chameleon Labs is great on OH but I haven't tried it yet.
Hope this helps
Old 30th August 2007
  #9
[QUOTE=TocaLaGuitara;1467277]Well, I am looking to buy my first set of drum mics, and I'm having quite a difficult time deciding which mics to get, so I was hoping you might have some suggestions. I am trying to keep the total cost for mics around $1000-1200, but having some difficulty because I want mics that sound decent. Here's what I'm looking into, and I've placed *'s next to my favorites. I would most likely be recording rock and metal, but also probably singer/songwriter stuff, so I need versatility. Any advice you can provide would definitely be appreciated.


Kick Drum

ElectroVoice RE20

Toms

CAD M179 or Audio-Technica ATM450


Overheads

Audio-Technica ATM450

I would use an atm650 for the snare.
Old 30th August 2007
  #10
Lives for gear
The Overheads are going to depend on your room. It's amazing to hear so many people recommend OH mics without asking a thing about your room. If the room is small then the ATM450 isn't going to work because it has a tendency to emphasize the highs bouncing around in a small room. I did a shootout in a small drum room and they came in dead last. Rode NT1's sounded better. They'll probably sound fine in a bigger room though. The Octava's are really nice budget conscious OH's and can be modded to sound even better. They sound good on acoustic gtr too. For metal music you'll want these. The Peluso's won't work so well for metal. A little too mellow. I've not heard the AKG's you mentioned. Regarding the e604's, they're kinda similar to SM57's in sound and you can mount them on a stand. You just take off the hand screw on the back all the way off and it's already threaded for a mic stand. It sounds good on electric guitar if you need something in place of a 57. I've gotten excellent results with it anywhere you'd want a 57. In addition, you won't need tom stands. I believe they're also the cheapest option you have here. The D6 is a killer metal kick mic. Never used the dual element kick mic but you may want to look into it because the condensor portion of it may add a little more click to cut through heavy guitar.
Old 1st September 2007
  #11
Gear Maniac
 
TocaLaGuitara's Avatar
 

Thanks for all of the input so far. I'm still debating about the overheads, whether to go with the SE3 or Peluso matched pair. The audio clips I found online of the Pelusos sounded wonderfully detailed, but my gut tells me to go with the sE Electronics ones. For toms, I am most likely going with the 604's, and later on I'll upgrade to better mics.

A friend of mine can get me Sennheiser stuff real cheap, so I am going that route. That makes my decision tough for the kick drum. He can get me the e602 for probably $100-125, so at a price like that, I can't turn it away. But I really like the Audix D-6, and my gut tells me that the ATM250DE would be what I'm looking for.

Ciozzi, do you have any clips you recorded using the AE2500 with, that I can listen to to get an idea how the mic may sound?

For snare, I'm thinking an i5.

I have the money in my pocket, but I still am unable to commit fully to the mics. Just affraid to make the wrong choice.
Old 1st September 2007
  #12
Lives for gear
The D6 is the only kick mic that I have tried that actually sounds different to the rest. Loads of puch and bite. If you are looking for a more mellow sound, try combining it with an old D12 or with a sub-kick (speaker driver) of some kind.

Toms - Audix D2 D4 D6 or Sennheiser 421. I really like the 421, but they are expensive and the Audix mics have far better off-axis rejection.

OH - there are just so many good mics here that you are spoilt for choice. DPA 4091 is good and cheap(ish) and would be my choice if I didn't have the AKG 414.
Old 1st September 2007
  #13
Here for the gear
 
triton's Avatar
 

Kik ..........Akg D112 (always Good) Re20 is very cool but depends on musicians style.
Snr top ... Shure beta sm 56/57 (rejects spill from kik) or Akg C1000s(if there is space)
Snr bot ... Shure beta sm 56/57 (rejects spill from kik) or Akg C1000s(if there is space)
HH ......... Akg C393
Toms ...... MD421 (best sound but bulky) or EV 468 (amazing mics with good rejection )
OH ......... Sm81 or a good ol 451. Akg 414 sounds good but alot of spill so it all depends

Octavia ... dig a deep hole in the ground, carefully place the mic abt 3 ft from the surface, cover it with earth, and the best thing u can do then, is forget where u buried it !! heh
Old 1st September 2007
  #14
Lives for gear
 
seaneldon's Avatar
 

you've listed a bunch of hazardous tools (RE20 aside) for a very huge job in recording, the DRUMS. you might want to rethink that.

here's a general rule of thumb: buy once.

if you buy crappy small diaphragm microphones from the far east to capture something as important as THE ENTIRE STEREO IMAGE OF YOUR DRUMKIT, you are going to buy twice after you hear a real microphone somewhere else.

if you're trying to keep your costs down, for whatever reason, you can axe something like "tom mics". you can make the whole **** work with just 3 or 4 microphones if you do your job right in placing them, and if you've got a good player at the kit.

i'd tell you to go after the avenson sto-2 pair for under 600 american beans, but i get the feeling that your room conditions are less than ideal. not the best time to hang up omnidirectional mics. instead, for a little more cheddar you can go for a couple of josephson c42s. they're exceedingly detailed, a bit bright, high output, and work over almost any drumkit. you'll also hang them in front of acoustic guitars or other stringed instruments if you have half a brain. get two single mics instead of the matched pair and save a hundred bucks if you need to. now you're at $800.

SM57s will work in a pinch. If you want them to work over and over again, you can get one or two with the TAB-Funkenwerk transformer. They turn your generic $90 SM57 into a not-so-generic $300 microphone similar in overall texture to a Shure SM7. Now you've got something to poke into your kick drum, over your snare drum, a guitar amp, a singer, i think you get the idea. Hell, buy two with the mod and one without. Now you're at $1260.

Find a used Sennheiser MD421. Again, you can use it on any drum, any guitar, any bass cabinet, most vocalists, the list goes on. Don't pay more than $200 for one of these, but buy a couple extra clips with the money you saved buying second hand.

You're at under $1500 and you have 6 microphones that can handle most tasks in recording, not just a bunch of packaged "drum microphones".

Enjoy. Now start saving for some real mic pres.
Old 1st September 2007
  #15
Buy once is right.


I'm pretty sure you can afford 451s.

Beyer M160s can be great for overheads or rooms.

Or double you budget and get a pair of Mojave audio MA-200s which is what I'm currently using.

Or just buy one and wide pan your tom mics and let the bleed create you stereo image.

Then you've also go a great mic to use for all of you overdubs and that will go a long way towards making eveything sound good.
Old 1st September 2007
  #16
Lives for gear
 

I use the Okatavas MK012 as overhead, they work very well,
they very good on toms too with the 10db pad..
Old 2nd September 2007
  #17
Here for the gear
 
triton's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by djanogil View Post
I use the Okatavas MK012 as overhead, they work very well,
they very good on toms too with the 10db pad..
When they work they are not that bad but they are very susceptible to humidity and on the road they are always a gamble.This is just my first hand experience with them tho.
Ive had to use them 2 weeks ago when i ran out of mics for an orchestra playing live but id never opt to have them over say a 451, an sm81, or a shoeps.
Its embarrising to hv done all that work and then in some quiet passage hear the frying pan switch on tutt

... an airconditioned studio is of course another matter but there are still much better options as far as im concerned.

cheers
Old 2nd September 2007
  #18
Lives for gear
 

since you mentioned most of the audix d-series, i would recommend maybe getting the DP-5A pack - comes with the D6, 2 D2's, D4, and i5, and can be had for $500-550

then blow the rest on the ATM450's, or some other decent OH's, and you're good to go
Old 2nd September 2007
  #19
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Sigma's Avatar
for that price range i'd buy the shure mini mic set up for snare and toms, a d12 for kick and used 451's for overheads..for soc? ehh i don't know
Old 2nd September 2007
  #20
Here for the gear
As a drummer and AE fan, I can't stand the D6 on the kick. I must say though that so much depends on how well the drummer knows his or her tool. I personally like the AKG D112 better. However, so much depends on if the kick is wide open or muffled.

You can never go wrong with SM57s or Beta 57s on toms and snare. I actually like them better than the more expensive Beta 98s. There's something about the rawness that just works for drums. I have had good results with the i5 on the snare top as well.

For the D6, if you already have it, use it on a +16" floor tom. Talk about a canon!

These comments are specifically for my Gretsch 70s kit, typically with a 10, 12, 14, 16, 22 configuration. Overheads, IMHO, depend so much on the room that I cannot even comment.

Danny
Old 4th September 2007
  #21
Here for the gear
Regarding my comment about if the kick is wide open or muffled, I have noticed that when I play the kick wide open with either D6 or D112 INSIDE the kick, it ends up sounding like a beach ball being hit. It's all attack and no tone. A perfect example of this is almost any Simon Phillips recording.

If the kick is wide open, there really needs to be a mic in front outside the kick.

However, if I'm playing a muffled kick, I love the sound of the mic inside the drum, even with just a single mic.

Just IMHO.

Danny
Old 4th September 2007
  #22
Gear Maniac
 

I get a really good kick drum sound from my 20inch ludwig bass drum with just a D6 about an 1.5 inches outside the hole.

I use coated ambassadors on both sides. 4 inch felt strip on beater side. 2 inch felt strip on the reso side with 8 inch hole. Nothing inside the drum. Surprisingly even with the 8 inch port, the reso head still resonates enough to add some smooth low end fun. The 8 inch port also allows the mic to pick more complete inside kick sound while still picking up some of the outside kick sound

What I like about having the larger port is that the amount of air being pushed out isn't as forceful as it would be if a smaller port was used. It's been my experience that by placing mic 1-2 inches outside a small port the pushed air creates a lot of low end poofy stuff.

If I place the D6 inside the port...its ultra attack and punch time!
If I want to go for a more, bouncy kick drum sound I'll put a LCD, in my case an at4050, 3-4 inches off the reso head.

Pics and sound samples below.
Attached Thumbnails
need drum mic recommendations-100_1165.jpg   need drum mic recommendations-100_1168.jpg  
Attached Files

holekick.mp3 (222.5 KB, 327 views)

resokick.mp3 (97.6 KB, 343 views)

Old 4th September 2007
  #23
Royer 121 as O/H

D112 inner kick, Royer 121 outter kick (pop shield!)

Shure beta 56/57 top/bottom snare

421 or beta 57 for toms senn e602 quite good on floor toms

chuck it all thru API pres. OH thru Shadow Hills
Old 5th September 2007
  #24
Here for the gear
Here's a picture of my Gretsch kit in large configuration mic'd up.

In this session, I have the D112 on the 16" floor tom, D6 inside, and Oktavia outside. Rest are Beta 57s, 57s, and ATs.

Danny
Attached Thumbnails
need drum mic recommendations-gretschmicssmall.jpg  
Old 5th September 2007
  #25
Here for the gear
And here are some of the Pre's we used.

Danny
Attached Thumbnails
need drum mic recommendations-pre1small.jpg   need drum mic recommendations-pre2small.jpg   need drum mic recommendations-pre3small.jpg  
Old 9th September 2007
  #26
Gear Maniac
 
TocaLaGuitara's Avatar
 

Thanks for all of the advice and suggestions. Here's where I'm at so far.

I ended up going to my local GC last monday for their big holiday sale, and ended up picking up most of the gear I needed. Got the pre I've been looking into (DigimaxFS), cables, stands, and all the other support gear I've needed. Picked up an Audix D6 and I5 because the prices were right, and I've read and heard decent things about the D6. I also picked up a Blue Blueberry, mostly as an impulse buy, but you know, I need a decent LDC. Right now the best mic I have has been a Rode NT1A. Got a decent price on it too.

I'm also getting three e604's and an e602 through a friend of mine. He was able to get a discount for me that I couldn't refuse.

Now my only remaining issue is overheads. One thought I had was to get another NT1A and use the pair as overheads, and although they obviously wouldn't be a matched pair, I figure it shouldn't be too huge of an issue. But still, I think SDCs are the direction I want to go in. I'm still mainly focused on the sE Electronics SE3 matched pair. With a little digging though, I found some articles online mentioning the upcoming SE4, but I can't find anything more than just an announcement, so I figure I'll check out their booth at AES to find more information. The other thing is, I have the opportunity to buy a pair of Neumann KM184's for about $700 new. So I'm debating which to go with. My main application would be overheads, but I would also be recording other percussion, acoustic guitar, and possibly orchestral music and other applications outside of the studio. I'm pretty sure the Neumanns are the best choice for me, but I wanted to get your opinions.
Old 9th September 2007
  #27
The atm450 for overheads and don't look back. Nothing in the price range i tell ya they crush!
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