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Thread: Bass drum mic technique

  1. #1
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    Cool Bass drum mic technique

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    I'm not satisfied with the kick drum sound I'm getting and wondering if you guys could toss in your two cents. I'm using a Beta 52 on a 22" Ludwig with new Aquarian Super Kick 1 batter and front heads.

    So where are you guys positioning the mic?

    Front head on or off?

    Do you use a pre amp ?

    My live sound is great, just cant seem to capture it. I'm recording to a Yamaha MD-8. The other mic's are 2 MXL 603's for overheads and 3 AT DR-150's.

    Thanks!

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    From what type of wood is the bassdrum?

    What is it you don't like in the recorded sound?

    Does the front head has a hole in it, if not....please make one, it sounds so much better.

    I have a beta 52 too and a friend of mine told me I should have the blue ring exactly at the point where the hole in the head is.
    I didn't know if this was joke but I tried it and it seems to work too.

    The pre amp I use is the one that's in my digital mixer and I am very happy with the sound I get.

    The only problem is that I know my bassdrum sounds live even better, and I think that may be your problem too.
    It's very hard to get the sound you have live in the studio because the conditions and acoustics are not the same.
    If it is possible, try too move your kit to different rooms (without micing) and listen how it sounds there. I think it should sound different in each room.
    Try to mic the kit again and see what the results are.

    Marc
    I ate a baby

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    We use a beta 52 for kick also. I cut a hole in the front head & position the mic in the hole pointing at the spot where the beater strikes the head. The beta 52 is designed to emphasize the attack & bottom end of a kick drum. It's great for rock music, but not for everything. It definitely won't sound exactly like the drum does in the room. Maybe add a large diaphragm condensor out in front of the kick & blend the two.

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    I agree with coplinger. For my tastes, a single mic inside the kick isn't enough. I find that a LDC out about 3' in front of the kick fills in nicely what the mic inside can't do by itself.

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    I'm not getting enough thump !!!(Attack?) I have a hole in the head but have dont have a stand/ boom that will let me put it through the hole and into the drum. I'll work on that. It's a 1963 Ludwig Classic kit so I think it's maple. I do have a CAD m39 I could try in front of the drum also. Great suggestions! Thanks.

    Anyone else????

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    We replaced our drummer's felt beater head with a wooden one when we weren't getting enough attack. This helped. I found the best sound came from putting the 52 inside the hole, not inside the drum. Like sickmelvin said, with the blue ring even with the head. Also make sure the hole is offset from where the beater hits the other head, not directly in front of it.

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    Originally posted by nick6572
    I do have a CAD m39 I could try in front of the drum also.
    i think this is going to work very well for you.

    i have an e300, which is pretty similar, and use it all the time for this. 3 feet out in front is my favorite... try cardiod and figure 8 (the m39 is multipattern right?). also try the figure 8 with some sort of baffle behind it...
    very truly yours,
    hugs and kisses,

    george.

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    You can try to put the cad 3 feet out in front like eeldip said, for me this works great if I want I fuller sound but I don't think that's your problem.
    For thump you need to put a mic in the hole or even inside the kick. Changing the beater like coplinger said seems to be the solution or even tape a coin on the head. Though I really dislike that solution, maybe with the cad outside the kick it will sound really great.

    Expiriment, there are no rules.

    As I mentioned earlier the room has a lot to do with the sound of the kick.
    I know that my kick has a lot more thump in rooms that are bigger than the one it's in right now, so if it's possible change room and if not spin the kit around the room that it's in.

    Marc
    I ate a baby

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    Originally posted by nick6572
    I'm not getting enough thump
    If this is the case, you may need a little more muffling in the drum (I assume you are just using the heads built-in muffling?). Also, a wood beater and or a patch/credit card/quarter/whatever taped to the beater impact area can greatly enhance the attack and "click" sound. Experiment!

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    Originally posted by nick6572
    I'm not getting enough thump !!!(Attack?) I have a hole in the head but have dont have a stand/ boom that will let me put it through the hole and into the drum. I'll work on that. It's a 1963 Ludwig Classic kit so I think it's maple. I do have a CAD m39 I could try in front of the drum also. Great suggestions! Thanks.

    Anyone else????
    There are 2 main frequencies that create the "modern" kick drum sound. The Thump is around 60hz. This is the part of the sound that makes your chest hurt at a concert. The Click or Attack is around 4khz or so.
    I have been noticing that the click sound is more important than the thump in hearing the Kick Drum. If you turn down the Bass on a modern rock recording, even in your car stereo, you can usually still hear the Kick Drum, because the click/attack is so clear.
    I have been checking my own drums this way at home. Some times I cut the lows just on the kick and turn the track up to get more attack, since the Beta and the d112 are boosting those freqs already, and this has worked somewhat, tho I am still experimenting.
    Insert witty self deprecating comment here.

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