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Member Since: Sep 23, 2006

Hey, I'm new here and I don't know much about recording drums, so please bear with me. I have a Shure PG mic kit with 3 tom/snare mics and 1 kick mic....I record in a room that's probably around 16x20ft with a high, triangular ceiling and carpet floors. There are many objects in the room, but no curtains. It's a metal(aluminum?) building with styrofoam insulation. I heard that little/no curtains makes cymbals sound bad, but my problem is that I'm getting too much cymbal in my overall mix. I don't even use overheads...I mic my snare, 2 toms(not the floor tom) and kick drum. I put all my faders on my submixer at 0, then hit each drum individually and turn the record level up until the meter on the mixer reaches the top peak of the yellow light, but before it fades into the red light, and then i record a sample and lower my faders until I get the drums to sound pretty equal in levels, but no matter what, I have too much cymbal. It sounds loud and annoying...I've tried moving my cymbal higher up away from the toms (where I think I'm getting the most bleed), I've tried angling the mics different ways, I've tried taking some of the high EQ out...but I still get that piercing cymbal in the background. I don't know what i've done wrong, because the first recording I ever made didn't have this problem...I put the mics on the drums, made a decent sound check, then just recorded and the cymbals came out great, just enough to hold the drum sound together but not drown the mix...but now, the mics have been moved some because I don't want other people playing my drums while the mics are attached, and I don't know, I tried putting them back in the same spots but it just doesn't sound the same. I'm running my mixer straight into my recorder, which only has 2 xlr inputs, so I'm submixing and can't go back to edit individual drum parts...someone please give me some ideas on how i could fix this? THANKS FOR ANY AND ALL REPLIES!!!


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JR Productions
Since: Mar 03, 2005

Sep 23, 2006 04:05 pm

Hey matt,
I dont mean to sound like an *** when I say this but try playing the cymbals quiter. Everything will sound loud in comparision and the fact that you arent even using overheads makes me think that your really wailing on those things.

Since: Nov 23, 2005

Sep 23, 2006 05:08 pm

Make sure that if you're using dynamic mics, the 48v phantom power isn't on. If the interior surface of the structure you're recording in is metal or metallic finish, you'll get much more cymbalic reflection. I know this from playing drums for years in bars with tin ceilings.

One thing I learned quickly was to play the drums "pre-produced," that is why playing technique is so important. On a scale of 1-10, hit the bass drum 9 or 10, the snare, 6-8, the toms 5-8, and the cymbals 1-4. This will help the recordings turn out better for sure. You'll never get all the cymbals out of other mics and certain ones will be worse that others. Good luck.

Since: Jun 08, 2006

Sep 23, 2006 08:53 pm

Wow, I had no idea that phantom power would effect dynamic mics at all?

Ne'er ate 'er
Since: Apr 05, 2006

Sep 24, 2006 01:01 pm

Phantom powering doesn't affect dynamic mics, unless there's something seriously wrong with your mixer. If so, say bye-bye to your mic.

Czar of Midi
Since: Apr 04, 2002

Sep 25, 2006 04:51 pm

One thing you can do is to EA them out a little bit. The cymbals are in a much higher Eq range then the rest of the kit will need. So cutting slightly in the higher EQ range will help imensly. I suggest starting aroung 8k and work up or down from the till you get them quiet enough for the mix.

Since: Sep 08, 2005

Sep 27, 2006 03:36 am

what kind of cymbals are you using?

I used to have this problem and it came down to the type of cymbals i was using in the end. Bigger cymbals such as chinas or large crashed can really cut into a mix. I just took my big cymbals off my kit and borrowed some samller,less loud crashes off a friend and the came out perfect in the mix.

Since: Jun 08, 2006

Sep 27, 2006 04:28 pm

I'll add to that. The first time I did any real studio work, the engineer all but FORCED me to loose my big eighteen inch Ziljian Z.

Funny enough, he replaced it with a cymbal off the studios kit, a Ziljian K Dark, and I liked it so much, I've been playing them ever since.

Just dropping to thirteen inch hi-hats helps a lot, too.

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