Yet another "help me with mics" thread

TomPotti

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Hi all,

For most gigs, I've been using a Shure Beta 52 on the kick and SM57 on the snare.

But now the band is starting to go for larger venues and I'm inevitably going to need a more complete mic setup for when there's no sound guy.

I generally play a 1 up, 2 down Tom setup when space allows. I got hats, splash, and crash to my left. I got ride and 2-3 cymbals to my right. Attached a photo so you get the idea.

I'm thinking of adding 2 overheads as part of the setup. I really don't want to fuss with mic'ing each individual tom. So the OHs would function to cover the cymbals and toms. And this would only be for live work with large rooms or outdoor venues.

Would the Glyn Johns method work decently given my setup? Or should I use a more standard placement?

What are some mic recommendations that would work well with my shure 57 and beta52? I know this is like opening a can of worms, but there are too many choices!

Thanks.

EDIT: Rather than trying to mic the drums for the audience, I'm now concentrating on miking the drums for the bands in ear monitoring.
 

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DamnSingerAlsoDrums

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I use a Glyn Johns-ish setup with two Beyerdynamic M160's for recording and no close mics on toms. My toms still sound thunderous.

The M160's have a hyper cardioid pattern that may help reduce outside bleed in live applications but I think that unless you play real quiet music and/or have a low-volume stage setup with amps kept at reasonable volume and in-ear monitoring, it may be hard to get clean toms sound with overheads only.
Usually, OH are hi-passed fairly high so you don't get much bass bleed rumbling through. But if you keep them full-range, this is something you are going to have to fight against.
 

Northamusi

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You didn’t mention what genre of music you are playing, which may be a big factor in whether or not the toms need to have mics on them. If you use the Glyn John’s technique be prepared that the “side” mic (the one near the floor Tom) may capture bleed from an instrument amp because that microphone is pointed across the stage.
 

TomPotti

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It's rock/pop music, 80s through now.

If we are all using in-ears, that will probably make it easier to control amplifier issue, correct?

Also, since I will be the furthest back on the stage, I'm assuming that would also help.
 

dcrigger

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Would the Glyn Johns method work decently given my setup? Or should I use a more standard placement?
In general - distant micing techniques are going to create more problems than they are going to solve. Not in the studio - but live on stage.

The further a mic is from the intended source, the more it picks up the surrounding stage mush. Which doesn't help the out front one bit. Tons of that mush is already spilling off the stage.

If you were to add two mics - I would put one near the upper tom and one between the two floor toms. Then with someone listening out front - see what the balance sounds like, If there isn't enough cymbals and toys - then raise those two mics away from the toms until the balance is workable.

I don't know that perfect will be attainable without more mics and an active sandman out front. But for set it and forget it - this should work pretty well.

Always keep in mind, that in a pop or rock context, the first thing that needs help is the bass drum, then the snare and the toms, then toys and rides, with crash cymbals bringing up the rear. They really do cut through a mix - even in surprisingly large rooms.

But you need to keep things close - distant micing s incredibly useful in the studio, yet an absolute detriment live, at least most of the time.
 

TomPotti

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In general - distant micing techniques are going to create more problems than they are going to solve. Not in the studio - but live on stage.

The further a mic is from the intended source, the more it picks up the surrounding stage mush. Which doesn't help the out front one bit. Tons of that mush is already spilling off the stage.

If you were to add two mics - I would put one near the upper tom and one between the two floor toms. Then with someone listening out front - see what the balance sounds like, If there isn't enough cymbals and toys - then raise those two mics away from the toms until the balance is workable.

I don't know that perfect will be attainable without more mics and an active sandman out front. But for set it and forget it - this should work pretty well.

Always keep in mind, that in a pop or rock context, the first thing that needs help is the bass drum, then the snare and the toms, then toys and rides, with crash cymbals bringing up the rear. They really do cut through a mix - even in surprisingly large rooms.

But you need to keep things close - distant micing s incredibly useful in the studio, yet an absolute detriment live, at least most of the time.
Thanks for the advice!
 

MustangMick

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The Glyn Johns 2 overhead mic method works great in a recording studio but not on a cramped noisy stage.
For bar/function gigs I use just 1 overhead mic.

I place this a sticks height above my head pointed straight down between the snare and bass drum.
Most PAs are run in mono, otherwise half the audience will miss a component of the mix.

Cheers
Mick
 

cruddola

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The Glyn Johns 2 overhead mic method works great in a recording studio but not on a cramped noisy stage.
For bar/function gigs I use just 1 overhead mic.

I place this a sticks height above my head pointed straight down between the snare and bass drum.
Most PAs are run in mono, otherwise half the audience will miss a component of the mix.

Cheers
Mick
I agree, I've gotten away with murder using a Rode NT1 as a single overhead. It has a whopping 137 SPL and is a mighty forgiving sensitivity range. It also bulletproof when it comes to build. Lotta bang for your buck. It's a large diaphragm condenser that requires Phantom Power, so practice with it's placement.
 

TomPotti

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Hey guys,

Thanks for the advice so far.

Let's assume now that I just want to mic the kit for the purposes of in ear monitoring for the band. Given the size of my kit, do you think one mic would be sufficient enough for the other band members to hear my cymbals and toms more clearly? If not, I could do a XY setup deal.

Again, assuming that this is for in ear monitoring purposes, would there'll be a substantial difference between a small diaphragm or large diaphragm condenser?
 
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TomPotti

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Mics I'm looking at currently are:

Oktava mk012
AKG C214
Rode NT4 stereo
Shure SM81

Any opinions on a good starting point? Thanks.
 

Northamusi

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Of those you mention, the Shure SM81s are probably “best.” I hate using that word because choosing mics is like picking a flavor of ice cream, but I wouldn’t even consider the other options you mention. I don’t understand why anyone would want to use Oktava mics... inferior build quality and harsh sound.
 

TomPotti

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Decided I'm going to go with a pair of SM81s. Thanks for help all
 

bpaluzzi

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Of those you mention, the Shure SM81s are probably “best.” I hate using that word because choosing mics is like picking a flavor of ice cream, but I wouldn’t even consider the other options you mention. I don’t understand why anyone would want to use Oktava mics... inferior build quality and harsh sound.
Never had any problems with the oktava build, and I prefer them to the 81s in almost all cases. The 81s are a decent live overhead, but I’d never use one in the studio (except on hats, which never ends up in the final mix), while I have used the Oktava and the AKG a lot.
 
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