MAKE A PROFESSIONAL STUDIO

TIUNON80

New member
Hello guys, I would like to make a professional studio to record my drums. I already have an acoustically treated room and I wanna know what mics, preamplifiers, monitors, audio interfaces, mixer, etc. to buy?
I would like to obtain Weckl sound. What do you suggest me to buy? Thanks.
I currently have a focusrite scarlett 18i20 1st Gen, a jts 7 piece drum mic set and a soundcraft efx12.
 

jimmys69

MOODerator
Howdy Tiu! Or whatever you would like to be called...:-)

So, describe first what is involved in your acoustically treated room. Dimensions/type of treatment you have, etc.. That is the absolute first step before anything else matters.
You may have seen from some of Weckl videos, he has obviously worked on the acoustics in his drum room. From one video I can see what appear to be absorption panels and some tiles that may offer something useful. If you are also trying to mix in a professional way in a room, you have to start with room modes and deal with treatment that is needed in your particular space. A recording room is much different in its needs than where you mix. You stated 'professional' , so I am trying to be clear as to purpose.

You have the FR Scarlett which appears to have 8 preamps with ADAT expandability. You can add another set of 8 inputs with something inexpensive like a ADA8200 to up that to 16. Even for a 7 pc drum kit, you are looking at 10 or more mics to get the kit micd correctly in my experience. One or two on kick, two for snare, one on each tom, two overhead mics, a room mic, a HH mic and a ride cymbal mic. Now this can be done with far less, but then you have much less control of each individual piece of kit. And then we will get into what mics you have that work for the purpose.

Now, again, you said 'professional' and 'acoustic treatment' in your post. Describe in detail what you have first. Then we can move forward. Others will likely chime in soon.

Welcome to HR!
 

rob aylestone

Well-known member
Before you buy anything very expensive, buy some simple and cheap stuff until you learn how to drive it. It’s only my humble opinion, but for drums, even a huge amount of cash does not guarantee good results with drums. People often cite certain Drummers who got their killer drum sound with minimal kit, but the room makes a huge difference to success. You want a professional studio? As in one that will generate a full diary of paying clients, or one that uses typical professional equipment for your own use? They can be very different. The other thing is that having a shopping list of colours, brushes, equipment and canvas does not make you an artist.

i just had to Google weckl. I see his history, and I’ve looked at some images. Not heard anything he’s played on, but I guess he’s a drummer‘s drummer. Very clearly he records in excellent rooms. You could swap mics, interfaces, mixer strips and all sorts, let alone monitors, and still not sound like him without the room, and his touch. Like the guys who buy a Brian May guitar, processors and a pile of AC30s.

your acoustically treated room. Treated to do what? Not let sound out, not let sound in? Or to reflect, diffuse, diffract, absorb in a musical manner?

what worries me a bit is the quest you have set yourself. I think the first thing I’d do is put the kit in the room, set up one mic, a high overhead. I’d pick a wide band condenser and record ten minutes of quiet, loud, rock, jazz and your other favourite styles. Then you need to listen on something wide band and capable, in a know space, or headphones. Maybe use a CD like the Alan parsons soundcheck. The listen to yours vs his specially recorded drum. Once you know what it sounds like in your room, then, you have some kind of base line to help form choice.

the worst thing to do is to buy everything in one go, especially big ticket items. You have nothing to base decisions on. An SM57 is always a good purchase, but as for interfaces? Most people buy new ones when they don’t have enough inputs, or where their recordings are already awesome, but just lack a tiny bit of something. Good recording studios are always evolution, never good because of equipment bought in one go. A friend works for a large concern with a big equipment inventory and a nice ‘sound’. They’ve just opened another in a different part of the country and have even copied the space, not just the equipment. Already they’re buying extra because some kit just doesn’t sound as good in a space that in a photo could be mistaken for the other. Shopping lists for intro, smaller, projects can be done successfully, but until you have a pair of good monitors in the facility that sound good to you for your sort of music, you wont be able to judge the rest of the kit purchases. Sorry for long post, but I think you might just be about to waste a lot of money if you don’t take great care.
 

Slouching Raymond

Well-known member
The professional drum booths at studios I've been in were rather cramped, and no bigger than my own Esmono 2m by 2.8m booth.
I don't have enough space to site a couple of well positioned mics, or the headroom for a single overhead mic.
So my approach was to attach a mic to each drum, and an assortment of spaced out 'pencil' mics.
I bought a Samson 7 piece drum mic kit, and then another, and then another. These were what I could afford, and produce reasonable results.
I'm not in a rush to buy expensive mics.
Initially, I plugged all the mics into a snake cable, and off to the Korg D16XD + ADAT in another room.
Next, I tried plugging them into a Behringer Eurodesk 32:8:2 mixer, and recorded as eight sub-mixes.
My current set up is the same, but I pre-mix all the mics to stereo, and record the stereo. I have Behringer compressor and reverb units connected to the mixer.
The Behringer mixer gives me plenty of value for money preamps.
None of this is professional, I'm just following my nose. But what does 'professional' mean anyway?
The Esmono is my room sorted though.
I know nothing about Weckl, sorry.
 

rob aylestone

Well-known member
Professional is 'good, amateur is 'bad' - is the rather stuffy answer, when behaving it's really amateurish that's bad and professional could mean couldn't care less - I'm being paid.

I think working as an amateur in a professional manner is the best - you do the best job, because you enjoy it. We all know professionals who are lazy and bad at their job. Somebody once said amateurs care, I like that. Brits are always snobbish - and look down on amateur anything - sport, dance, acting, singing, playing instruments, but I'd rather work with a keen amateur than a clock watching pro. A keen pro, (they do exist) would be the icing on the cake, while a lazy amateur the worst¬!
 

TIUNON80

New member
Ok, thanks.
What (mics,preamp,rme,monitors,pc,etc.) do you suggest me to buy for the best drums recordings quality? I would like to spend less than €10000.
 

jimmys69

MOODerator
Ok, thanks.
What (mics,preamp,rme,monitors,pc,etc.) do you suggest me to buy for the best drums recordings quality? I would like to spend less than €10000.
Yeah, so well. How about you answer the questions given to you before asking more. Seems you are trolling yourself now....
 

rob aylestone

Well-known member
You simply have silly money to burn? You have a very capable preamp/interface. You've a budget set of mics. No mention of your current speakers.

Being very honest, the idea of having ten GRAND to spend is very strange if you really have no idea of what you want. I have to assume you either didn't understand or ignored the questions. We cannot suggest a microphone, let alone microphones because we have no context. You stated you have an acoustically treated room. Great, so have I, but mine is terrible for drums. You've not even told us about your kit, what cymbals you have, what your styles are. It's like asking somebody to recommend the colour of the carpet for your home. Not even the type of carpet, or how big the rooms are, or if you prefer man-made fibres or want natural fibres. we don't know if it's just you or you have a huge family and pets. This is why we cannot suggest these things - you've given us nothing to work with, and just deflected our questions. Two 414s for overheads and a 112 on kick and a 57 for snare. There you go. why did I pick them? ...... because I like them! Plenty would say that's a stupid choice, but I'll be using them this week on a jazzer, doing George Gershwin! I could go and check this Weckl guy out, but maybe not.

What monitors is a big problem. A good friend has Adam A77's and I really like them, but there must be so many I've never heard. I bought some 15" Tannoys in the late 90's, and I loved them - but they were sold when the studio closed, and I regretted it - if they were still made I'd buy another pair, just like that!

Your turn now - tell us what you need, what you do, and what your space is like - a photo would help no end!
 

TIUNON80

New member
No, I don't have silly money to burn but I'd like to buy the best quality gear with my budget to use until my death.
I wanna record my drums(yamaha absolute hybrid maple: two toms, two floor toms, two snares, bassdrum, sabian and zildjian cymbals) like a pro. I'd like to record all music genres.
I don't have monitors. My room is acoustically treated but I don't wanna upload a pic on the web for privacy reasons.
 

jimmys69

MOODerator
No, I don't have silly money to burn but I'd like to buy the best quality gear with my budget to use until my death.
I wanna record my drums(yamaha absolute hybrid maple: two toms, two floor toms, two snares, bassdrum, sabian and zildjian cymbals) like a pro. I'd like to record all music genres.
I don't have monitors. My room is acoustically treated but I don't wanna upload a pic on the web for privacy reasons.
So then either answer questions or don't bother asking again.

I asked you do describe in detail what acoustic treatment you have. And in addition to that, what are the dimentions of your room? Seems that you don't want any answers there so I cannot help you further if you don't want to play. If you cannot describe the room you are recording in, then how can anyone be expected to give a valid answer as to what is recommended?

So basically, do whatever you want and forget what how anyone responds because you don't want real answers from anyone anyway...
 

rob aylestone

Well-known member
I sort of get the picture thing, but so many times, people ask questions and the answer depends on the information. I'll be honest here - the way you phrased the question in the first place makes us think of dozens of other posts - I want to make a professional studio, then you quote a drummer you'd like to sound like. You can be a professional with minimal equipment and lots of talent. We're talking about people who charge lots of money and can walk into a room they have never been in before, and have a pretty good idea of what mics will suit the room, and the instrument in it. Our suspicion is you don't have those skills ...... yet. So we ask about the treatment. This is designed to find out if you think treatment is the tons of soundproofing you put into it, or the angles of the walls to each other and what those walls are made out of. Usually at this point people might say they have designed it to be very dead, or very live, or with no parallel surfaces at all - stuff like that. My favourite producer is Alan Parsons - he likes to record with figure 8 mics over the kit. He knows instinctively what will will work - and I can guarantee that if he read your post he would have no idea either. You just cannot produce shopping lists for equipment without knowing the room and the sound of the kit. We asked about the monitors for a reason. You can't record drums properly without them, because even the best headphones will only give you a clue as to how well your recordings will work on speakers. When you get experienced, you know that if your favourite headphones sound like the kick drum is perfect, then you need to increase everything below 60Hz a little for speaker listeners.

See our dilemma? You want advice, but we still have no idea what to recommend, because you won't show us the space, or give us a detailed plan - these won't help the burglars, but it really is like phoning a garage and asking what's wrong with your car by describing the knocking sound it's making. They'll ask you to bring it in because they can't diagnose a dodgy cam follower by a description. It really is this simple. Show us, or tell us, or we are just guessing. In another topic somebody was saying they often use 18 mics on their drum kit. Some of us will nod wisely, others will look at the 5 or 6 they are using and look amazed with the notion of 18 - but somebody has evolved this system and if it works for them, it's fine.

Let's start with treatment. treatment as in cutting reflections, trapping bass? or shock carpet, or duvets hanging from the walls? we don't know. We can blow your budget easily - but we are guessing at the success.
 
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