Is Anyone Using Two Mics For Kick Drum?

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Jay Reynolds
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Post by Jay Reynolds » Wed Sep 17, 2008 1:16 pm

@?,*???&? wrote:
MoreSpaceEcho wrote:
@?,*???&? wrote:Yes, for nearly all dynamic that is the case.
you gotta stop smoking that cheap shit.

what about all those dynamic mics specifically designed for kick drum? like the D112, the audix d6, sennheiser e602? presumably the designers would want to include some sub 80Hz frequencies in their mics responses, no? how many people have used any of these mics on kick drum on innumerable records with perfectly acceptable results? c'mon.

here's the D112's response. still flat at 50Hz. c'mon.

Image
Looks like a roll-off to me. Every put a Pultec EQH-2 on a bass drum? 20Hz, 30Hz, 60Hz, all great frequencies to present that kind of low-end you can stand on.

Won't have anything to work with unless you're dealing with a condensor.

You proved my point quite well. Thanks!
if your point had been that the roll-off started at 50hz...
Prog out with your cog out.

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Post by T-rex » Wed Sep 17, 2008 1:20 pm

To get back on topic.

Brad, Your observation is right. If you flip the phase and the two tracks sound better, there is a phase issue.

But your scenario is not right. Both mics individually are still capturing the full frequency of the drum (for the most part). If you listen to the track by itself, you should hear a good approximation of what that mic picked up. Its the phase relationship between the two mics (and eventually between every mic used) that causes the problems. *If I am wrong here, please point that out to me, but this is my understanding.*

The way I see it your options are basicaly to:
Just use one mic. Pick one that captures the most of what you need and EQ that track etc.

Or kill all EQ and:
1. flip the phase switch on one BD track and see if it sounds better.
2. If it sounds better but not great, unflip it and nudge one of the BD mic tracks until you hear the most bass/most pleasing sound.
3. Once you get the two BD mic's at the point they sound the best together, then start adding all the other drum mics one at a time and see if the bottom goes away. If it does start flipping phase switches again.
4. Once you get all of the mics in as phase friendly place as possible, you can start EQ'ing and get back to mixing etc.

It doesn't matter what mic's you use or what pre's or anything. If the phase is jacked up you are climbing a huge mountain. Work on that first, and the rest should fall into place.
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Post by MoreSpaceEcho » Wed Sep 17, 2008 1:32 pm

so jeff you say that dynamic mics will "avoid capturing any frequency below 80Hz", i post a graph of a popular dynamic mic that shows it's flat almost a whole octave lower than that, and i have proved your point?

hm. ok. i concede defeat.

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Post by T-rex » Wed Sep 17, 2008 1:40 pm

@?,*???&? wrote:Wow, another two mic on kick drum thread...

I use three.

Why did you use two dynamic mics on your kick?

With the steep roll-off below 80 Hz on a dynamic mic, you pretty much avoided capturing any frequency below 80Hz.

A large diaphragm condensor with a flat frequency usually makes a great combination with a dynamic.

Combine those two with a subkick, and you've got alot of options at the time of the mix.
Isn't a subkick a giant dynamic mic with a massively heavy diaphram? And aren't you using this to pick up the low low end which is EXACTLY what you are saying dynamic mics can't do?
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Post by sparky » Wed Sep 17, 2008 2:44 pm

burrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrn

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Post by @?,*???&? » Wed Sep 17, 2008 2:58 pm

T-rex wrote:
@?,*???&? wrote:Wow, another two mic on kick drum thread...

I use three.

Why did you use two dynamic mics on your kick?

With the steep roll-off below 80 Hz on a dynamic mic, you pretty much avoided capturing any frequency below 80Hz.

A large diaphragm condensor with a flat frequency usually makes a great combination with a dynamic.

Combine those two with a subkick, and you've got alot of options at the time of the mix.
Isn't a subkick a giant dynamic mic with a massively heavy diaphram? And aren't you using this to pick up the low low end which is EXACTLY what you are saying dynamic mics can't do?
Yeah, but also working with a condensor mic...

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Post by chris harris » Wed Sep 17, 2008 3:02 pm

I'd think that you were avoiding the real argument if I actually believed that you even understand the real argument.

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Post by losthighway » Wed Sep 17, 2008 5:13 pm

I'd be surprised if anyone even needed much 20hz in a kick drum in a typical rock, pop, jazz, country mix.

Most even sounding mixes on classic records have much more tame low end on the kick, it isn't hard to capture WAY more low end than these records with an average sized bass drum and a kick mic.

Other rules of thumb:

1. 2 mics are never necessarily better than one.

2. Hostility on audio engineering boards is ALWAYS silly.

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Post by weatherbox » Wed Sep 17, 2008 6:41 pm

My usual starting point for a ported kick is two dynamics on the drum (one in, one out/just at the cutout) plus a front of kit mic which is pretty kick-heavy. With an unported drum I try to avoid the phase tweaking process that comes with batter side/front side/rest of kit micing and just get one mic in front sounding as good as possible and often a mono overhead/shoulder mic that gets some attack from the batter.

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Post by Jay Reynolds » Wed Sep 17, 2008 7:43 pm

losthighway wrote:
1. 2 mics are never necessarily better than one.

2. Hostility on audio engineering boards is ALWAYS silly.
Where would you rank blindly adhering to misinformation? I'd hope it comes in around 0.5.
Prog out with your cog out.

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Post by losthighway » Wed Sep 17, 2008 8:49 pm

Yeah there's alot of that going around too. It's a good point, unless of course you typed it in a hostile voice in which case you need to revisit undisputable law #2.

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Post by akg414 » Thu Sep 18, 2008 7:41 am

@?,*???&? wrote:20Hz, 30Hz, 60Hz, all great frequencies to present that kind of low-end you can stand on.
Actually, looking at the chart, at 40Hz, there is only a 2db drop off. Not a real show-stopper. And freqs of 20 & 30 - are they that important to be hyped?
- Brad

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Post by @?,*???&? » Thu Sep 18, 2008 8:04 am

bradjacob wrote:
@?,*???&? wrote:20Hz, 30Hz, 60Hz, all great frequencies to present that kind of low-end you can stand on.
Actually, looking at the chart, at 40Hz, there is only a 2db drop off. Not a real show-stopper. And freqs of 20 & 30 - are they that important to be hyped?
Look, nearly all dynamic mics exhibit this kind of roll-off. An SM57 for example has a roll-off that starts at 110 Hz- hardly useful for bass drum. Given no other mics, what would you do?

The upper model Heil mics are pretty flat though.

Considering the frequency loss of using a dynamic, I merely suggest filling in your picture with a more objective condensor mic.

Get your own sound.

btw, ever use a subkick (not a speaker)? All resonance in the lowest of frequencies. I'm talking using another kick in front of the kick that is being played. I think DW calls theirs the 'resonator'. Regardless, you are drastically limiting yourself with a dynamic with that kind of roll-off.

One wants to capture 'all of the sound' no?

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Post by T-rex » Thu Sep 18, 2008 8:15 am

bradjacob wrote:
@?,*???&? wrote:20Hz, 30Hz, 60Hz, all great frequencies to present that kind of low-end you can stand on.
Actually, looking at the chart, at 40Hz, there is only a 2db drop off. Not a real show-stopper. And freqs of 20 & 30 - are they that important to be hyped?
No. Please don't listen to Jeff. It's not that he never knows what he's talking about, but he's like a political ad - he works in half truths. You have to really filter through every piece of advice he offers. He by his own admission uses a big dynamic mic to capture the low end which he later said was an impossible to capture anything under 80 hz because of the giant moving diaphram - which is exactly what a sub kick is and it lives to capture between 20 hz and 200 hz.

The mics you have are fine. You can mic a BD with one dynamic, two dynamics, one condensor, two condensors, a speaker or any combination of the two or three or whatever. The matter at hand is, you have tracks to mix and you have to make them sound as good as you possibly can. Have you had any results by flipping the phase or nudging the tracks?
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Post by nordberg » Thu Sep 18, 2008 8:19 am

i use the new mach 56 razor! 56 blades to cut your face with. so smooth... i usually use a ldc or ribbon (w/ pop screen) outside the kick. every once in a while if i need more attack i'll throw a sm91 in the kick. mix to TASTE!
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