Weights in the bass drum? - Sounds Like a Drum Video

stevil

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Hey friends, today's Sounds Like a Drum video is pretty intriguing. It's about the basketball-y ping you get sometimes with unported or minimally muffled bass drums. Apparently it's a great studio trick (and makes playing the drum feel better), but it sounds weak live.

What do you all think? Has anyone tried it, live or in studio?

Seems to be the same principle as the new Yamaha Live Custom Hybrid Oaks. I'm intrigued.

 

MasterBlaster

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Hmmmmmm... I like it!!! I just fit a 10lb dumbbell through the 4" port and dang if it doesn't sound better!
 
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Mongrel

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But wait! I thought we wanted those bass drum shells off the floor and empty so we can get maximum resonance!!!

Now we are filling them with 15lb sand bags!!!

Lol...

Pretty cool video.
 

Seb77

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As much as I like that series, this epsiode seems a bit under-researched, regarding acoustics and such. That "basketball sound" is a matter of the attack noise being reflected within the shell (especially with deeper drums, that's why it's also noticeable with some floor toms).
All you need to do in order to get rid of it is put something in the drum, can be as thin/light as a towel, in order to break the reflections.
The obsession with "nothing in the drum" and using muffled heads instead, along with using ultra-deep shells, imo has caused this problem in the first place.

The other aspect of the weight in the drum, "tightening the low end", can be achieved by using a pillow or blanket resting against the head. Sandbags have been used since at least the 60s to keep drums in place, or those pillows/blankets within the drum.
(Although Fred Laico mentions this in context of a 50s jazz recording; I doubt they used this method back then): https://www.soundonsound.com/people/miles-davis-round-midnight-classic-tracks
 

blueshadow

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I think Simon Phillips puts a paint can (Not sure of color) in his bass drum? I'm guessing for this reason?
 

blueshadow

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Yup. I remember him telling about this trick when he did a clinic years ago. Don't know if he still does it.
Yeah I've never seen it in a pic or video of his...whatever he does works, some of the best sounding drums in my opinion. I like a little laundry in my kick even if not touching the heads it still effecting the sound.
 

SteveB

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All you need to do to get rid of that ping is throw a very small towel or shop rag in there...and that's only if you want an open acoustic sound. I use more padding than that (small packing blankets straight from Uhaul..just cut into smaller pieces), there's no ping whatsoever. That's just the sound bouncing off the empty shell, even more noticeable with heavy muffling rings on the batter instead of a louder head.
 

bongomania

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Remember a couple years ago when the KickPro weighted pillow came out, and everyone here raved about it? It was like the must-have accessory of the year.

I still use mine, when I want that sound.
 
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Hop

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I think Simon Phillips puts a paint can (Not sure of color) in his bass drum? I'm guessing for this reason?
Simon has a can filled with sand to avoid issues with the accidental release of any paint. Here's a couple of videos that go into great detail.

Paint can at the 4:25 mark:

If you want to hear all about the SP drum sound start at the beginning - go to the 15:50 mark to hear about the can in the BD:

So to summarize the concept simply, items placed in a drum either reflects or absorbs energy generated from striking the head and thus affects our perception of the sound.
 

blueshadow

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Thanks Hop...funny I've watched both of those videos before and probably where I heard about the paint can...I forgot that this is where I heard it and obviously saw it.
 

Markkuliini

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he other aspect of the weight in the drum, "tightening the low end", can be achieved by using a pillow or blanket resting against the head. Sandbags have been used since at least the 60s to keep drums in place, or those pillows/blankets within the drum.
Note that the sandbag is not touching the heads on this video. So the tightening the low end is achieved by combination of the weight and diffusion of the sound waves that the bag creates. I have never achieved similar result by just laying something light on the bottom of the drum.
 

Hop

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I think that Cody is using a photographic type sandbag - canvas type (as he mentioned the studio application), which will produce a different result than Simon's paint can -
Even though they may have the same mass the container material will have some influence/ make a slight difference.
 

GeeDeeEmm

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Maybe it's just my aging ears again, but I couldn't hear any significant difference between the before and after comparison. I'll bet I could hear a difference live, though.

GeeDeeEmm
 

Mongrel

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Maybe it's just my aging ears again, but I couldn't hear any significant difference between the before and after comparison. I'll bet I could hear a difference live, though.

GeeDeeEmm
Whew! I'm glad I'm not alone.... Thanks for going first, GeeDee.

I'm like...wait...there it is...hmmmm....maybe not? Some pitch bending up, but it's not like I grabbed a pillow case and went looking for some sand...
 

dsop

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As much as I like that series...
They seem to always discuss the most obvious stuff, or they never go far enough into the experiments. I can appreciate the amount of work that goes into it. I wonder what the payoff is.
 

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