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Tuning Drums - Do you tune to the shell resonance?

cap217

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I know my DWs have shell resonate notes but every drum does. I usually tune the bottom head to the shell note then I tune the top either lower or higher depending. I watched a lot of tuning videos but Im curious before I buy a tune bot, if others do it the same way? I get a lot more resonance tuning this way.
 

JDA

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no you tension to stick bounce
that's how you can tell; when
they start getting (feeling) too soft you tension them up

2-
the note comes after not before, you tension it;
it ain't a guitar where you're reaching for a preordained piano pitch;
Tension the heads; then come down (back off tension)
creating a sound/event not a note;

what key or note is a volcanic eruption
or Lightning;
or stream ocean etc

That's drums
 
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cap217

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When I record drums it just sounds more balanced when its tuned to the shell. But so far nobody agrees which is nice to hear. It solves the ulgy bloom of overtones.
 

gbow

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I do not.

gabo
 

Tornado

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What's "shell note?"

Take all the heads and hardware off of your drum. Tap it with a mallet and listen for the note. This is supposedly the note that the drum sounds best at. Never mind that the note changes after you put the hardware back on, and never mind tuning your toms to intervals that can't possibly all match their "shell notes"
 

Rock Salad

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Take all the heads and hardware off of your drum. Tap it with a mallet and listen for the note. This is supposedly the note that the drum sounds best at. Never mind that the note changes after you put the hardware back on, and never mind tuning your toms to intervals that can't possibly all match their "shell notes"
I see. Wouldn't the chamber's resonant  f would be more appropriate?
 

Tornado

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I see. Wouldn't the chamber's resonant  f would be more appropriate?

I don't know. I think all we can do is tune the heads to where they sound good and sound good with the other drums in the kit. Anything beyond that is kind of wasted effort. I don't think we ask the drum where it wants to be tuned, we ask ourselves and make it happen.
 

HalldorL

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No, never.
Many, many moons ago I read an interview with Elvin Jones where he described he tuned each drum until “it sounded good” regardless of how the other drums in the kit were tuned. “If you have good drums, the drums will sound great together”.

I tried it and have been doing it ever since. Works for me.
 

bassanddrum84

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What happen to just tuning to sound good? All these drum dial, tension tuning gimmicks I’ve never used. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. Give me a kit and a drum key and I’m good.
 

Tornado

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What happen to just tuning to sound good? All these drum dial, tension tuning gimmicks I’ve never used. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. Give me a kit and a drum key and I’m good.

I agree for the most part, but a precision tuned drum with a TuneBot is a beautiful thing. I can do a fine job without one, but it just takes it to another level.
 

Pylot

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I am just an amateur and hobbyist. So when I started playing again I tried the drum dial, didn't like it. Got a tune bot and in the process of taking my newly acquired old Ludwig's apart for inspection and a little edge maintenance I found the shell note for each drum. Then I tuned in thirds up or down. Sometimes I matched the batter or reso to the shell and tuned to a third above or below on the opposite side. Sometimes I tuned to a third up or down on the reso and the batter.

I tried tuning a Big Beats kit so the shell, reso and batter were all the same note. Those baby's would sustain a hit forever.

I got to where I usually tune the batter higher and the reso lower which seems to clip the ringing for the most part.

In any case I just do this for fun, I have 8/10/12/13/14/16 toms now. I used to always stick with even or odd sizes but I have a 13" orphan. Mine sound fantastic to me and the small tom to big tom progression is downright musical too.

My heads are about worn out and will need replacing sometime soon, but they still hold the tune and sound great.

I have also used tuning to get a snare to settle down. That has worked on everything except my 57 Slingerland which rings no matter what combination of heads and tuning I have tried. I think that since it was made for calfskin that real skins may be all that settle it down but I ain't going there.

To each his or her own! What sounds great to me may rattle your teeth and vice versa. Some like em flat, some like em ringing, some like em the way they sound best to them.

My brother was a professional musician and talking about tuning he told me of a drummer that had one drum that just sounded foul, it was tuned sharp or flat or something and he said it really stood out in a bad way on many of their sets.
 

TPC

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No.

What if the shell pitch is way above or below where you like it?

What if for a particular session you need the drum up or down?

I think it’s a silly notion on many levels.

I’ve played some DW sets and it did seem like they only sounded right at a very narrow tuning range, generally a range that I didn’t like.
 


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