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Acoustic Drums for Metal: A Guide

Discussion in 'F.O.H.' started by Glenn Fricker, Nov 30, 2005.

  1. Djabthrash

    Djabthrash Member

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    Hi there !

    It's been years since i wrote something on this forum, and as i'm now getting into drums recording, i've read this thead again and loved it (alongside watching those amazing youtube videos Glenn put out in the past years) !

    I just watched this video underneath and I'm curious if anyone had ever tried the "felt strip" technique to control the sound of the kick drum heads :



    I know this thread is about "metal" drums and the drum sound in this video is far from it, but i'm interested in the "felt strip" technique itself, and how it compares with no muffling/dampening at all, or with putting some kind of pillow/blanket in between the 2 kick heads (which is the common method for metal drums).

    p.s : sorry for my broken English
     
  2. Djabthrash

    Djabthrash Member

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    Second question : since reducing hi-hat bleed in the snare top mic is key to a great snare sound, i was wondering why most snare top mics were placed around the 11 o'clock position (from the drummer point of view), whereas the hihat is more around the 9.30 position ...

    My guess is that it's harder to sneak a mic in the 9.30 position (because the hihat would be in the way of the mic stand, considering most studio guys use mic stands instead of clamps for snare miking). Besides that, i guess the snare top mic also has to reject left crash (on a classic right-handed drummer setup) and rack tom bleed, so this 11 o'clock position is some kind of compromise to reject the hihat, but also the left crash and the rack toms on the left.

    What's your take on this guys ?
     
  3. MrBongo

    MrBongo idiot at work

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    i had an Aquarian Superkick 1 on the kick for years until i quit drumming, it has a built-in felt ring.
    I guess there´s a difference between a felt strip and a felt ring, as the ring allows a more consistent movement in the drumhead itself, means cleaner overtones. Haven´t done any comparison though.


    re. Snare mic:
    Most important thing above all: it must not get in the drummer´s way!
    The 11:00 position, or sometimes 10:30, allows the drummer to reach rack toms with ease and does not block the way to the hihat at all.
    A supercardioid mic will even reject most of the bleed in this position, because the null is not behind the mic, but instead at ~120°. But your usual cardioid works just fine there.
     
    #743 MrBongo, Aug 24, 2017
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2017
  4. Djabthrash

    Djabthrash Member

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  5. Djabthrash

    Djabthrash Member

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    By the way, I'm finally getting into tracking drums myself !

    I'm formerly a guitar player but i've also started playing drums in the past few years, and as i'm getting better and playing in bands (but not as the drummer... yet) and interested in producing them (and if possible not using drum programming anymore), I'm trying to get good drum production.
    My setup is quite modest right now, but i'm trying to make the most out of it, and without using samples.

    My main problem now is the kick. This is my first attempt (1st drum tracking ever, and quick mix) :

    https://www.dropbox.com/s/nogilj711tl40jc/TestTrackingZoom_20170817_20170821v1_MajMix_V2.mp3?dl=0

    Could you guys confirm my kick sounds too muffled and could use more highs/click ?

    I like its lows though.
    And the rest of the kit doesn't sound quite good yet, but i'll focus on that later.

    EDIT : For reference :

    Kick mic track, no processing :

    https://www.dropbox.com/s/u1g9f4qs9...0170821v1_MajMix_V2_KickMicOnly_NoFx.mp3?dl=0

    This is how the kit sounded in the room (zoom H6 XY mics) :

    https://www.dropbox.com/s/inehq6s0m...817_20170821v1_MajMix_V2_XYonly_NoFx.mp3?dl=0
     
    #745 Djabthrash, Aug 25, 2017
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2017
  6. MrBongo

    MrBongo idiot at work

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    with pleasure :)


    the kick is way, waaay too soft. Look at kick and snare, when they have the same impact, they have just the right balance. On a kitchen radio or laptop speakers, there would be no kick and lots of snaredrum.

    But: depending on the sound of the entire mix, whatever you want to have, the snare might be too thin and cracky. It might get lost behind guitars and stuff
     
  7. Djabthrash

    Djabthrash Member

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    @MrBongo : thanks a ton man (again !) !

    Checking the balance at very low volume is definitely something i should have done... Thanks for pointing that out !

    I guess i'll have to raise the kick volume in the mix, and drop some of its lows. And i'll aim for a more balanced kick sound right at the source next time i track drums. I guess and i hope removing (or at least flattening) that damn pillow will do the trick, since my kick was supposed to be a click machine to begin with (plastic beater, high velocity hits, very loose batter head, tight resonant head).

    EDIT : Here's a new version of the mix where i raised the kick volume big time, cranked my 1k high-shelf (from +5dB to +12dB) on the kick EQ, and dropped some of the lows (around the 50-120hz region). I also adjusted the snare (and tom mic volume) a little bit :

    https://www.dropbox.com/s/j96e4d52lp07obb/TestTrackingZoom_20170817_20170826v1_MajMix_V3.mp3?dl=0

    I think it sounds way better now (the kick at least).

    Also, on the mic polar pattern subject, a friend of mine also added that it's better to have the mics parallel to each other as much as possible, to avoid phase issues.
    What's your take in the subject ?
     
    #747 Djabthrash, Aug 25, 2017
    Last edited: Aug 26, 2017
  8. Glenn Fricker

    Glenn Fricker Very Metal &Very Bad News

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    Just a head's up: I'm compiling & updating this piece into a downloadable PDF which will be available on my website.

    I've learned so much over the years since starting this thread... New techniques for miking and mixing... plus there are some really great software tools that open up all sorts of great capabilities that simply weren't available in 2005.

    It might take a few weeks, but this should be ready sometime this fall. Stay tuned!
     
    allanqa likes this.

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