Drum Recording Questions

Cauldronics

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you'll need to walk/run back and forth but it's just hard drive space. i used to run up and down two flights of stairs to record myself on my old 1" 16 track machine. once you get your sounds/levels, you're good to go. you can always get a bandmate/friend to bang on the drums a little bit to get your levels and sounds. i know i always hit harder than most other folks who would be playing, so if you're in the same boat, just back off the level a little. besides, at 24 bits, you don't really need to worry about using all those bits
Haha
That reminds me of when I'd record full bands with no assistant in my recording studio, there was a 40' hallway and then another 20-30' between the control room and live room after going around the corner. I'd be sprinting down the hall for the first hour of a session to adjust mic positions or fix something in the live room. If a door was built into the wall directly between the two rooms it would've decreased the useful area of the control room, so it never happened.

Often in that situation I could get the bands to load in and setup the night before and when they came in the next day, everything was miked up, but you still have to tweak everything in place. Those were fun times!
 

storsav

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Depending on the drum sound you're looking for, I'd recommend trading out "overheads" for more of a room mic setup if possible. This will give you the air and natural reverb you'll likely want. Play with mic placement on those to get a natural sound you like or even a crazy effect (if one is placed next to a mirror or other hard surface). Also, depending on how you play your toms, maybe overhead L and R mics will get the toms and cymbals sufficiently. Check out the Glyn Johns method. Then all you have to do is play like Bonham. https://leicesterdrumschool.co.uk/miking-drums-glyn-johns-technique/
 

bpaluzzi

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Depending on the drum sound you're looking for, I'd recommend trading out "overheads" for more of a room mic setup if possible. This will give you the air and natural reverb you'll likely want. Play with mic placement on those to get a natural sound you like or even a crazy effect (if one is placed next to a mirror or other hard surface). Also, depending on how you play your toms, maybe overhead L and R mics will get the toms and cymbals sufficiently. Check out the Glyn Johns method. Then all you have to do is play like Bonham. https://leicesterdrumschool.co.uk/miking-drums-glyn-johns-technique/
I wouldn't consider room mics a replacement for overheads. They're generally used in addition to overheads, and require a great sounding room, which may be challenging in a home studio.
 

Rmgreg

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Depending on the drum sound you're looking for, I'd recommend trading out "overheads" for more of a room mic setup if possible. This will give you the air and natural reverb you'll likely want. Play with mic placement on those to get a natural sound you like or even a crazy effect (if one is placed next to a mirror or other hard surface). Also, depending on how you play your toms, maybe overhead L and R mics will get the toms and cymbals sufficiently. Check out the Glyn Johns method. Then all you have to do is play like Bonham. https://leicesterdrumschool.co.uk/miking-drums-glyn-johns-technique/
So basically you are saying mic the snare.and kick but instead of 2 pencil condenser overheads, use one overhead above the snare and one near the floor tom pointed at the hi hat?
 

JonnyFranchi$e

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I would also look at the "recorderman" method. I just started using that for a current project and it seems to be giving really good results - minimizing the effects of an unfavorable room.
 

dcrigger

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I'll second that suggestion to really be careful embracing all of these more distant micing techniques - room mics. recorder man, glynn johns... these are all wonderfully useful tools - In Great Sounding Rooms.

Which literally no home studio qualifies as. There's literally no way to make the OP's 20x8 room a great sounding drum room. Really good drum sounds can probably be recorded in it - but invariably by de-emphasizing the room, not accentuating it.

Always remember that now more than ever - really great ambience can be added to your tracks. But a smallish, mediocre room sound dominating our main mic coverage can't be made to go away later.

Even with the mics close in - the room still effects the sound greatly. So no matter what, the room always matters. But if the room isn't great - then I tend to keeping it out of my tracks as much as possible.

And then if I need the drum setting in a big space - or want the sound of room mics that are beyond the quality and size of my room - I'll use a convolution reverb to create the sound desired. (Convolutions reverbs use algorithms created by the program taking a digital audio snapshot of actual physical spaces - they are really suited for this purpose as opposed to regular reverbs that are mainly about creating washes of ambience.)

Tons and tons of recordings have been made in small, or noisy (live) or just bad sounding rooms with no more than close mics and overheads. Though maybe with the overheads more creatively spaced to help the tom/cymbal balance when only using four mics.

Again - so many of these cool micing techniques were created in - and live and die on - large, excellent sounding rooms. The more meat and potato approach may not be as sexy - but it actually gets (and has gotten) the job done in most challenging circumstances.
 


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