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Thread: More "Crack" On Snare

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    More "Crack" On Snare

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    I've been recording snare with a beyer m201 on top and a Senn 421 on the bottom. The snare is a ludwig black beauty copy, new heads and the drummer and I are very happy with out it sounds in the room. However, it seems to be recording very weak, I was hoping it get some advice on how to better position the two mics I am using to get more of a rock/alternative crack out of it. The setup we have now has been working great for lighter indie rock.

    Right now I position the m201 about an inch out from the rim and an inch or two up, pointed across the drum to the spot the drummer hits. The 421 is underneath the drum, about an inch or two from the snares pointed almost strait up about center on the drum. In the past I have used the 421 to mic the air hole about 2-3" out, but this particular snare drum has no air hole. Does this sound correct? Are there any other suggested mic positions to use as a starting point?

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    Well first things first. You say you are happy with how it sounds...that's good. You say you want more crack out of the snare. Does the snare already have the crack that you are looking for?

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    Yeah, in the room we hear exactly what we want to hear. Some of it comes through in the overheads (the recorder man technique) but I want the close mic to really kick it up and its just not.

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    My personal experience has been that a lot of snares that sound really good in a room can actually have some very nasty sounding qualities in a close mic situation. What i've always done is just used the overheads as the main snare sound, and then used a heavily EQ'd close-mic snare channel to fill in certain frequencies that may have been washed out in the overheads.

    Others may have more specific ideas on how to improve the positioning.

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    I usually use compression to get more of a perceived "crack" sound. Maybe an opto compressor for a nice round bite.

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    I'd try a single mic on top of the snare and back it up to about 4" away.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Track Rat
    I'd try a single mic on top of the snare and back it up to about 4" away.
    Yeah - me too.

    Another thing to check is if you've got the polarity of your bottom mic flipped 180 degrees.

    If that doesn't give you a big enough crack on your snare, PM me and I'll give you my ex's phone number and you can ask her to come over and sit on it...
    Check out my band The Executives at www.theexecutivesmusic.com

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    Quote Originally Posted by sile2001
    My personal experience has been that a lot of snares that sound really good in a room can actually have some very nasty sounding qualities in a close mic situation. What i've always done is just used the overheads as the main snare sound, and then used a heavily EQ'd close-mic snare channel to fill in certain frequencies that may have been washed out in the overheads.
    +1. If it sounds good in the room, then record it "in the room."

    My experience with getting the snare crack is like sile2001's. I threw away the close-mic track on the snare, and the crack increased.

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    Is EQ an option? You can try hunting around for a good "crack" sound and boost it a little. I usually look for it in the overheads, then try a little boost of that frequency in the snare head first. As Sile mentioned- if it sounds good in the overheads you can do whatever you need to with the close mics to fill them in.

    -Chris

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    I typically mic my bottom snare as far away from the chains as possible. I mic it in about the position as the top mic, but as far from the chains as possible. Have you tried a condensor on bottom snare? Lately, I have been using one of those cheap Oktava mk012's along side my shure beta 57a for top snare. I spent a few minutes taking the capsules off and lining them up, put the capsules back on, and then taped the mk012 to the beta57 using the basket of the 57 to be a physical barrier between the oktava and the hihats to help get a little more rejection. That has been working fabulously so far. Another trick would be to compress the snare with a slow attack time and a medium release. This will help the "crack" of the snare stay a little hotter than the body sound that immediately follows.

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