Bass drum pillow

bellbrass

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Your right, sorry my bad, I was thinking of another product whose name i cannot remember at the moment, its like a heavy brick shaped pillow with rubber on the bottom ,


was thinking of this https://kickpropillow.com/
Ahh yes,those are pretty heavy. What I like about the SledgePad is, despite the name, they are pretty light and don't over-do the job of damping.
 

Ray Dee Oh King

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I'm sorry that I'm not answering the actual question here, but I have a question myself about pillows. I'm not being snarky or a smart ass either, so please dont go there. Years ago I used to put a pillow in my bass drum myself. But why do people still do this? With the heads that are available nowadays theres no need for a pillow. Even with the setup I'm using now, an SKII batter and fibreskyn feltone reso with nothing inside I get a solid thud. No overtones really at all. I'm almost missing a bit of overtones and may go back to the Regulator for a reso to get a bit more overtone out of my bass drum. The heads made nowadays make it to where extra dampening is not needed with proper tuning. Why are players still putting pillows in their bass drums?
 

Ray Dee Oh King

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Ray Dee Oh King, pillows (feather filled) are used for the reasons stated above by dcrigger in post #19.
Hmmm, I have yet to have a sound guy say that to me. It's been many years since I've used a pillow, so I'm a bit out of touch I guess on the pillow situation. I do find the setup I'm using right now does lack a slight bit of higher frequencies, but a quick slide up on 6k and that's gone. Well thanks for replying. Much appreciated!
 

dcrigger

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Hmmm, I have yet to have a sound guy say that to me. It's been many years since I've used a pillow, so I'm a bit out of touch I guess on the pillow situation. I do find the setup I'm using right now does lack a slight bit of higher frequencies, but a quick slide up on 6k and that's gone. Well thanks for replying. Much appreciated!
You're right, that is "solution" when using heads like the SKII or rather... fix. Why break something that doesn't need to be broken? And why? It's not like the SKII produces more or better low end - it doesn't. It can just seem that way because of it's near total lack of top end.

And sure slapping on some 6k can return some attack back to the drum... but it also increases snare leakage... which means more heavy gating...isn't it always better to attempt to get the desired sound from the source? Every engineer I've ever worked for has thought so. Because no fixes are free - they all come with tradeoffs. Tuning/muffling so that drum-mic-cable-pre amp alone gets me as close as possible seems to always be the order of the day. Sounds that are just tweaked seem to punch through any mix more successfully than one's that have been... fixed.

And I get that one can play for scads of FOH engineers that won't say a word about this... they deal with it way too often and quick fixes in most live situations are simply easier than... discussions. My experiences with the negatives with these pre-muffled came while touring with our own FOH folks and using different backline in each city. Now I always spec'd rental kits to avoid such heads - but every now and then I'd get stuck with one. So I'd dial it in the best I could and hope for the best. And every single time, the FOH would approach me later with "OMG what's wrong with that BD?" - never attacking me, just the drum. One time he said something like "It's like it's sonically fixed in stone. All of the frequencies I use to get the BD to lock into the mix are simply not there". And try to boost them up - of course, just causes a myriad of other problems. So we muddled through. And I'd call the front office and have them TRIPLE underline where the rider stated "NO PRE-MUFFLED HEADS" - where it had been only double underlined before." :)
 

Polska

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I'm sorry that I'm not answering the actual question here, but I have a question myself about pillows. I'm not being snarky or a smart ass either, so please dont go there. Years ago I used to put a pillow in my bass drum myself. But why do people still do this? With the heads that are available nowadays theres no need for a pillow. Even with the setup I'm using now, an SKII batter and fibreskyn feltone reso with nothing inside I get a solid thud. No overtones really at all. I'm almost missing a bit of overtones and may go back to the Regulator for a reso to get a bit more overtone out of my bass drum. The heads made nowadays make it to where extra dampening is not needed with proper tuning. Why are players still putting pillows in their bass drums?
One reason for me - flexibility. I'm playing a brewery in a couple weeks. It's a big, open, concrete floor room with steel and glass. My KickPro will let me muffle it extreme if I want to for the mic, or if I sense it can use a little air, I can back the pillow off and insert a little more boom. Without it I'd be stuffing my jacket in the kick and it would sound and feel terrible to me. The heads alone just won't work in a room like that.

I'm also often at the mercy of sound guys, and it just isn't worth arguing with them about it. 3 bands on the bill, I need to make sure I have in place the quickest and best option to work with them to get a good sound.
 

Paradiddle

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You're right, that is "solution" when using heads like the SKII or rather... fix. Why break something that doesn't need to be broken? And why? It's not like the SKII produces more or better low end - it doesn't. It can just seem that way because of it's near total lack of top end.

And sure slapping on some 6k can return some attack back to the drum... but it also increases snare leakage... which means more heavy gating...isn't it always better to attempt to get the desired sound from the source? Every engineer I've ever worked for has thought so. Because no fixes are free - they all come with tradeoffs. Tuning/muffling so that drum-mic-cable-pre amp alone gets me as close as possible seems to always be the order of the day. Sounds that are just tweaked seem to punch through any mix more successfully than one's that have been... fixed.

And I get that one can play for scads of FOH engineers that won't say a word about this... they deal with it way too often and quick fixes in most live situations are simply easier than... discussions. My experiences with the negatives with these pre-muffled came while touring with our own FOH folks and using different backline in each city. Now I always spec'd rental kits to avoid such heads - but every now and then I'd get stuck with one. So I'd dial it in the best I could and hope for the best. And every single time, the FOH would approach me later with "OMG what's wrong with that BD?" - never attacking me, just the drum. One time he said something like "It's like it's sonically fixed in stone. All of the frequencies I use to get the BD to lock into the mix are simply not there". And try to boost them up - of course, just causes a myriad of other problems. So we muddled through. And I'd call the front office and have them TRIPLE underline where the rider stated "NO PRE-MUFFLED HEADS" - where it had been only double underlined before." :)
This is very interesting. What heads do you like to run?

Jeff
 

rayboomboom

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I find any pillow to be too much. I use a flannel sheet, folded and tied with string to hold an 'I' shape. I can reach in the mic hole to push it up against both heads for max muffling, or just barely touching, or squish it and not have anything touching at all. And it weighs very little. Super cheap too!
 

audiochurch

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love any extra pillow from my house or an old towel rolled up. having a port in my 20 and 22 is a must for me now. allows easy muffling adjustment for each gig.
 

EvEnStEvEn

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I've not used internal BD muffling in years but since we're performing a string of fully mic'd dates with subwoofers and such, my band recently got me this Ahead pillow because it's shaped in a way that straddles the long tom mounting/stabilizer pole inside my 1980 Rogers bass drum (with ported reso). It's got a velcro strip underneath like many do and it's in the $20 range at most online sources. The jury's still out on whether it'll be an ideal solution to combat annoying ring frequencies that cannot be EQ'd out. I may report back after a few upcoming gigs.



ahead pillow.jpg
 
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Ray Dee Oh King

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You're right, that is "solution" when using heads like the SKII or rather... fix. Why break something that doesn't need to be broken? And why? It's not like the SKII produces more or better low end - it doesn't. It can just seem that way because of it's near total lack of top end.

And sure slapping on some 6k can return some attack back to the drum... but it also increases snare leakage... which means more heavy gating...isn't it always better to attempt to get the desired sound from the source? Every engineer I've ever worked for has thought so. Because no fixes are free - they all come with tradeoffs. Tuning/muffling so that drum-mic-cable-pre amp alone gets me as close as possible seems to always be the order of the day. Sounds that are just tweaked seem to punch through any mix more successfully than one's that have been... fixed.

And I get that one can play for scads of FOH engineers that won't say a word about this... they deal with it way too often and quick fixes in most live situations are simply easier than... discussions. My experiences with the negatives with these pre-muffled came while touring with our own FOH folks and using different backline in each city. Now I always spec'd rental kits to avoid such heads - but every now and then I'd get stuck with one. So I'd dial it in the best I could and hope for the best. And every single time, the FOH would approach me later with "OMG what's wrong with that BD?" - never attacking me, just the drum. One time he said something like "It's like it's sonically fixed in stone. All of the frequencies I use to get the BD to lock into the mix are simply not there". And try to boost them up - of course, just causes a myriad of other problems. So we muddled through. And I'd call the front office and have them TRIPLE underline where the rider stated "NO PRE-MUFFLED HEADS" - where it had been only double underlined before." :)
Interesting. I have multiple setups for my bass drum. About 2 months ago I laid tracks for our full length and we wanted a more open sound, so I threw on some Amb resos and vintage EMP batters, but the bass drum setup was pretty killer. I went with a Clear Ambassador as batter and the remo muffle system which is completely different than any other muffled head I have tried. Very punchy with tons of attack, and low end. Very full sounding as well. I always end up back with the SKII though. I use a boundary mic inside the bass drum, so I don't get too much bleed at all. So the snare bleeding in while bringing up 6k on the bass drum is basically non existant. Hey thanks for the tips though. Much appreciated!
 

DannyPattersonMusic

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I've been using SledgePad for quite a while now. They are lighter than pillows/blankets, stay in place and work great with internal mic systems. They make various sizes and are made to your size kick drum.

If you just want minimal muffling go with a Vented Mini (I use this size the most) or a Vented Small ... the Mini & Small still lets the kick resonate and have some boom to it (especially with a solid front head) but adds the right amount of muffling and punch.

If you want more punch/attack go with the Vented Large or Original size.

Highly recommended.
 

rogerwilco

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The KickPro weighted pillow is fantastic. Its weight and rubber bottom allows it to stay in place, even after hours of playing, so you can dial in the perfect amount of muffling without a lot of hassle. It is heavy, though, so gigging with it isn't thrilling come load in/out time, and you can't easily get it in and out of a 4" port. (5", maybe…)

I don't have the science for this but I swear that the mass of the pillow lowers the resonant pitch of the bass drum just a tad.
 


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