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View Full Version : Drums in big recording room.


Joz
05-09-2002, 08:04 PM
Ok, my friend that, owns a nice pro studio, were a lot of famous rock bands record their drums(like foo fighters, Jimi Eat World, Sheryl Crow etc.)anyways, he's letting me use his tracking room to record my drummer for free. The problem is that I only have 8 inputs, cause I'm gonna use my digi 001. He's got lots of mics. I was thinking on using 3-toms, snare bottom and top, kick drum, one overhead and 2 room mics since the room is really good.
Do you think it's a good idea to use only one overhead, and 2 room mics, or should I use 2 overheads, and bus the 2 top toms to one input?
and what mics would you use for a powerful rock sound (like stone temple Pilots new albums).
thanks
PS: the recording will be this monday

BPollen
05-09-2002, 11:08 PM
Please take this for what it is, OPINION! If it were up to me, I would ask myself what is most important to have controle of? Obviously Kick And either snare top or Snare top plus Snare bottom deserve their own tracks. But, if you have a large format console and a good ear, don't be afraid of the bus! My session would look something like this. Kick (SM 91a) track 1 / Snare Top (SM 57) & Snare Bottom (Senh 441) track 2 / Toms 1,2,&3 (Akg 414's) tracks 3 & 4 / Overheads (Neuman U-69 xy) & Hi Hat (Neuman km 84) & Ride (Neuman km 84) tracks 5 & 6 / Room Mikes Galore (Neuman M 149's or AKG C-12's) tracks 7 & 8!>!>! This will take some time to get set up, but I believe that it is making the most out of what you can. Above all, if it sounds good then do it,......if it doesn't then fix it!! GOOD LUCK on Monday.

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digidesigner
05-10-2002, 01:51 AM
This is my opinion: If I have few channels I don't waste them on room recording. I record everything on separate channels, but I don't bother recording snare bottom as I will compress the s**t out of the top mic anyway and it will sound good... And I don't mix hat and oh´s together cause sometimes you don't need to use hat track at all and other times it is very important. About mics - you can throw stones at me, but I have found that those cheap sennheiser`s "evolution" mic´s for drumz sound incredible! I mean for kick and toms. anyway, I would go like this:
1. Kick (sennheiser evolution) 2. Snare (sm57 or beta57) 3. tom1 (sennheiser evolution) 4. tom2 (sennheiser evolution) 5. tom3 (sennheiser evolution) 6. hat (any good condenser) 7. oh L (any good condenser) 8. oh R (any good condenser)
I would keep the overheads wide! ... but keep the drumz tight!
peace.

Jules
05-10-2002, 04:38 AM
Kick - (inside & out mixed on desk)
Sn - (top and ugh! bottom if you must! mixed on desk)
Stereo Toms (mixed on desk)
Stereo OH (inc ride + hh mic if you must - mixed on desk)
Stereo Room (Various mics - mixed on desk)

You BEST tool in the box will be the engineer you are given to work with. (even if he is a junior) Make sure you make FULL use of his experience in that room or you will be making a very foolish mistake. He will have seen how the pros do it.. All you need to say is - we have to record the drums to 8 tracks... he can advise you from there. Are you allowed to use their own in house PT rig? That might be easier for them... ASK that first before you make the pro studio use your 001.

Good luck! & let us know how it went.

BTW if you turn up with old drum heads and *****ty cymbals you will be blowing your chance. Borrow snare drums so you have 3 or 4 to try out & get as many great cymbals & hihats as you can muster to the session. If you are inexperienced with drum tuning hire / beg for a friend to come down who can...

If you arrive with a worn snare skin & dented tom heads the studio staff will think you are a TOTAL moron. (but put the skins on & tune them one or two nights before so they "settle in")

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georgia
05-10-2002, 05:15 AM
Hey Jules! how goes it!

anyway, as usual Jules is right.. I will add my 2 cents though... images/icons/wink.gif

I went to a studio that had a custom one-off yamaha drum recording kit. It was unbelievable. Probably cost $10,000...Huge, great sounding kit. The room was at the TIME MACHINE in Vermont. One of the best drum rooms i've ever seen. Mic selection was like waking to find myself in recording heaven. What did we use? An old 18" tom sitting on two cloth covered bricks for a kick. A 10 year old beat to **** snare, 1 tom off the yamaha kit and a couple of cymbols off the yamaha kit. We grabbed some tube-traps and created a little "stonehenge" around the tiny beat-up kit and tracked it with 1 kick mic, 1 top 1 bottom snare mic, 1 tom mic and 2 overhead mics. The drums sounded so great the studio resident engineer couldn't believe it.
My point: It's not how many open mics you have. It's not about the most awsome drum kit, or the best mic...
It's all about the drummer and the engineer having their act together. You can get a wonderful set of drum tracks in your living room if you have a good drummer and a good engineer.

cheers

georgia

div32
05-10-2002, 02:28 PM
Originally posted by georgia:
You can get a wonderful set of drum tracks in your living room if you have a good drummer and a good engineer.

<font size="2" face="Verdana, Arial">True, but unless you live in a mansion, you won't get the STP sound. Maybe I'm thinking too much of the older albums, but I always thought of their drum sound as somewhat Bonham-esque. I second what Jules said about the engineer and make use of the room sound. You might ask the engineer his opinion of the best placement for the kit and for the room mics.

Good luck.

Alécio Costa
05-10-2002, 11:34 PM
I like and use:
sm91 - kick
beta57 - snare bottom
c418 - snare top
c2000B, c3000B, c418 - toms
overheads, hihat - at4050

cheap and quite good package!!!

Daniel_Dettwiler
05-11-2002, 04:33 AM
just some more thoughts (only my opignion)

I would never never never bus anything together in the studio. You don't know their monitors, nor the acoustics in the control room. The only thing to bus together are toms if there is no other choice. If you bus 2 Kick miks, or the two snare mikes together, you will have problems, this is really something you should do while mixing.

My suggestion is, that since you already got the studio for free, you hire a good engineer for the soundcheck (maybe one ore two hours. ) There is no doubt that a experienced engineer will get you far superior drumtracks to your tape than if you try something your own.

my 2 Cts
daniel

Robin Hughes
05-11-2002, 08:31 PM
I would suggest you get the drummer to play and walk round the room. When you find a spot where you reckon it sounds really good , put your best figure 8 mic , or an omni , at that point.

Then follow all the other advice given.

Tex Tiles
05-12-2002, 01:00 AM
borrow an ADAT or some light pipe converters and get 16 channels of input via light pipe. then put everything on it's own channel, including room mics. You'll be glad you did.

El Goodo
05-12-2002, 01:07 AM
When I get spec time in great room I try to get all the high dollar tone I can to tape (or PT). Here's what I would do for the big rock drumz to 8 tracks.
Kick: D112 to console with 1176 compressor on insert. Track 1.
Snare: SM57 top and bottom (usually phase reversed) to bus to 1176 compressor to PT. Track 2
Overheads: Best stereo pair of large condensers mics in house. Flat to two tracks of PT. Tracks 3/4
Toms: 451 on each tom mixed to a stereo bus. Compress and EQ to taste. Tracks 5/6
Close room: Great large condenser (U87 or similar) 2' off the floor and about 6' back (watch for phase) at about 4:00 or 5:00 o'clock from drummers perspective Compress excessively with a fast release for the Bonham effect. Record to it's own track in PT and mix in to taste. Track 7
Far Room: A really good large condenser up high and positioned to get as much room verb as you can. Track 8.
I know these are very standard technics, but they work and are a good place to start. Don't be afraid to EQ and compress while recording. You will probably be using some of the best sounding stuff around. Make it slam!

Andy Sneap
05-12-2002, 02:53 AM
SM91 in the kick, 57 on the snare top and bottom, mixed before, toms grouped in stereo (I like those SM98's but can sound a little thin sometimes), oh's , 1 per 2 cymbals grouped to stereo (any decent condensers), then a pair of good condensers in the room.

If you havent had much experience with tuning drums, get a tama tension watch, they take a bit of getting used to but give you a good guide. I always save half decent heads for demo bands. You know, when doing albums, and the guy gets his skins for nothing, so they've had two songs max played on them, then thrown to one side, better than the skins that came with the kit. I get some interesting looks leaving studios with scraps, I hate to see things go to waste. Also, what type of skin you are using makes a real difference, I tend to go with a powerstroke 3 on kick and snare (coated on snare) and toms, I can never remember, the dual ply remo one, a bit livelier than pinstripes...hope this helps
get some moon gel and lug locks also.

El Goodo
05-12-2002, 10:42 AM
When I get spec time in great room I try to get all the high dollar tone I can to tape (or PT). Here's what I would do for the big rock drumz to 8 tracks.
Kick: D112 to console with 1176 compressor on insert. Track 1.
Snare: SM57 top and bottom (usually phase reversed) to bus to 1176 compressor to PT. Track 2
Overheads: Best stereo pair of large condensers mics in house. Flat to two tracks of PT. Tracks 3/4
Toms: 451 on each tom mixed to a stereo bus. Compress and EQ to taste. Tracks 5/6
Close room: Great large condenser (U87 or similar) 2' off the floor and about 6' back (watch for phase) at about 4:00 or 5:00 o'clock from drummers perspective Compress excessively with a fast release for the Bonham effect. Record to it's own track in PT and mix in to taste. Track 7
Far Room: A really good large condenser up high and positioned to get as much room verb as you can. Track 8.
I know these are very standard technics, but they work and are a good place to start. Don't be afraid to EQ and compress while recording. You will probably be using some of the best sounding stuff around. Make it slam!

kalle74
05-13-2002, 03:16 AM
The big studio might also have a 24-bit analog-to-s/pdif converter ( I´ve used T.C Electronics Finalizer in bypass mode ) to give you 10 tracks, or even a Digimax or equivalent to give you 16 simultaneous inputs via lightpipe. Check first. Your input list might look a lot different...

bullyboy
05-13-2002, 03:45 PM
i agree with most ideas discussed here,....

one caveat,......

unless you're experienced and comfortable with bussing signals together,......

record each source on a separate track,.....
rent something 16trk,.....

and then play at home,......

my 2sense,....

bb

SoundWrangler
05-13-2002, 04:56 PM
Orig. blackface ADATs are about $300 on e-Bay, XTs maybe $100 more. At those prices, not much paranoia about ADAT "drum hours" - let the thing die after a couple of years, condition of its VHS transport or rec head doesn't affect quality as an 8-chan analog-digital converter anyway! (If you can stretch for an XT, better: converter quality approaches your 001's) But it will take you from 8 up to 16 chan of I/O for your 001 sessions, which is a HUGE difference for your project. And, you'll then have an ADAT kicking around - you never know when it might be useful! (Perhaps something to prop your feet on, while working long hours in Pro Tools!)

KenSluiter
05-18-2002, 09:14 AM
For Years, I always printed each mic to a seperate track so I could re-balance in the mix. One day I realized that :1. i always balanced the snare top& bottom to the same ratio almost every mix, and 2. What was going to happen in 2 weeks that would make me blend mikes together that I couldn't just do now. Point is: buss you mics together!!! Make a decision, even if it's the wrong one. Make a desicion and live w/ it.
The mix is the last place you want to decide what your drums should sound like. Waiting to make decisions on drum sounds in the mix is akin to building a house, and then deciding at the end how you want your basement to be.
If you have too many options w/ drum sound, your overdub process turns into a moving target. If you can't decide the an appropriate balance between top & bottom snare mics, then you should have someone else cut your drum tracks for you. my 2 cents.

Joz
05-20-2002, 02:52 AM
thank you'all, I'vet gotten really amazing tracks. I'll post them soon. Like someone said It's all about what you want before you record!.

Joz

electrok
05-20-2002, 08:39 AM
Daniel had the best advice

"My suggestion is, that since you already got the studio for free, you hire a good engineer for the soundcheck (maybe one ore two hours. ) There is no doubt that a experienced engineer will get you far superior drumtracks to your tape than if you try something your own.

Electrok

Joz
05-20-2002, 10:04 PM
OK, so here is a clip of the tracks! they still need to be tighter, I haven't gotten any time to really work on them...ultimately they need to be really rock n roll-in your face kinda drums, like a lot of English bands (this song reminds me of that). Here is a short mp3
http://www.modernamusement.net/music/jozmix.mp3

Joz

indieric
05-25-2002, 08:09 AM
Originally posted by div32:
<blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:<hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Arial">Originally posted by georgia:
You can get a wonderful set of drum tracks in your living room if you have a good drummer and a good engineer.

<font size="2" face="Verdana, Arial">True, but unless you live in a mansion, you won't get the STP sound. Maybe I'm thinking too much of the older albums, but I always thought of their drum sound as somewhat Bonham-esque. I second what Jules said about the engineer and make use of the room sound. You might ask the engineer his opinion of the best placement for the kit and for the room mics.

Good luck.<hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Arial">

indieric
05-25-2002, 08:16 AM
Originally posted by div32:
<blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:<hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Arial">Originally posted by georgia:
You can get a wonderful set of drum tracks in your living room if you have a good drummer and a good engineer.

<font size="2" face="Verdana, Arial">True, but unless you live in a mansion, you won't get the STP sound. Maybe I'm thinking too much of the older albums, but I always thought of their drum sound as somewhat Bonham-esque. I second what Jules said about the engineer and make use of the room sound. You might ask the engineer his opinion of the best placement for the kit and for the room mics.

Good luck.<hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Arial">STP DRUM SOUND:
Actually, if you want the STP sound off of "Purple" you want even need 8 tracks, you will need 5. A 421 in the kick, a sm57 taped to km84 on the snare and 2 u47fets 3 feet in front of the kit. Use Neve 1066s, then sum the drums to a 2-channel tube compressor, summit or tube-tech. You are probably in a big wood room, which is neccessary for this approach to work.

Here is my recommendation for 8 ch drum recording- ev re20 in kick, 57 snare (top only) c451 hat , 421 or 451s on toms (make the drummer play 2 toms!) 2 blue dragonflys, c12s or c414s for overheads
mono coles 4038 ribbon.

indieric
05-25-2002, 08:24 AM
Originally posted by div32:
<blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:<hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Arial">Originally posted by georgia:
You can get a wonderful set of drum tracks in your living room if you have a good drummer and a good engineer.

<font size="2" face="Verdana, Arial">True, but unless you live in a mansion, you won't get the STP sound. Maybe I'm thinking too much of the older albums, but I always thought of their drum sound as somewhat Bonham-esque. I second what Jules said about the engineer and make use of the room sound. You might ask the engineer his opinion of the best placement for the kit and for the room mics.

Good luck.<hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Arial">STP DRUM SOUND:
Actually, if you want the STP sound off of "Purple" you want even need 8 tracks, you will need 5. A 421 in the kick, a sm57 taped to km84 on the snare and 2 u47fets 3 feet in front of the kit. Use Neve 1066s, then sum the drums to a 2-channel tube compressor, summit or tube-tech. You are probably in a big wood room, which is neccessary for this approach to work.

Here is my recommendation for 8 ch drum recording- ev re20 in kick, 57 snare (top only) c451 hat , 421 or 451s on toms (make the drummer play 2 toms!) 2 blue dragonflys, c12s or c414s for overheads
mono coles 4038 ribbon for the room (I forgot that on my earlier post).

I would not sum mix or compress that heavy down to tape. I would put a an 1178 across the overheads and perhaps a tube limiter on the coles room mic. Also I love a large diapram condenser on kick as well a fet47 is my fave; however, not necessary if only 8 tracks.

6X 2
05-25-2002, 09:52 AM
Some very nice tips here indeed... I'd do it pretty much the way quite a few people have described,

kick in & out summed on desk
Snare top & bottom summed on desk, bottom phase flip
Oh's Left and right (+hihat summed to that if you really need it, I usually don't bother)
Toms summed to two tracks
Stereo room, compressed to death (or a bit less)

Unfortunately I don't have a big room to record in, so I'm living with corridor mics if there's not much happening in the building images/icons/blush.gif

Well, well, well... I'm thinking of putting my G4+digi 001 on a rack and getting some little desk to go with that to be able to record elsewhere easily if the budget is tight. Hmm.

6X 2