I finally got around to miking up and recording my drums for the first time in my new home studio, and I wasn't totally pleased with the results. In a way, they sound fine and I'm not striving for a high-end production, but I'm sure a lot of it is my technique.
First off, I started recording on a Tascam 388. I only plan to use a computer for the final mixdown to digital and that's it. Otherwise, I'll get obsessed with fixing everything with software. So, minimal approach from here on out is best.
My room is a standard, recently-finished basement about 20x15, with acoustic foam on the walls and a separate control room. I do not have bass traps in the "live" room, only in my control room.
My drums are a 3-piece MIJ stencil kit, mid 60's. I'm used to recording on a modern set of Yamaha Stage Customs, so this is also new to me. My bass drum has a front head with no port, and I want to keep it that way. I went for a 4-mic approach, using two RODE NT1-A LDCs as stereo overheads, an SM57 on snare and an Audix D6 on bass. My mic selections are limited but the full list is:
Rode NT1-A (2)
Samson C02 (2)
MXL 992 (free from Musicians Friend like 8 years ago)
Shure SM57 (2)
That's what I got. Most of it was purchased a long time ago on impulse, besides the Rode mics. I got the Audix D6 because I was lazy and didn't want to spend a lot of time EQ'ing my Yamaha bass drum, which, in the end, that was all BS. I liked the way it sounded on the Yamaha kit. I bought all this stuff back when I had money to spend on crap. Now I'm married and have a baby So, guess what my current music budget is?
So, I have to use what I have. I can sneak cheap stuff here and there but this will also force me to make use of the stuff I bought and make it sound as good as possible.
I started off thinking I'd pre-mix or submix the drums in a different mixer first, and then send the stereo output to 2 tracks on the 388. That was a pain and more trouble than it was worth. I realized I can just utilize the 388 inputs and just assign what I want to where. Where I have ignorance is when I'm using up 4 or say, 5 inputs for drums, I would only be left with 3 tracks to do scratch tracks on. I don't want to mix down my drums to save room until I know I have something to work with. And for that matter, if I use 4 mics and mix that as stereo, will bouncing the group to one track keep the panning or is that a stupid question?
Anyway, any assistance with the mixing portion and maybe some tips on what I can use on my kick drum out of my crappy mic locker would be helpful. Sorry for the long drawn out story.