Good inexpensive drum mic - advice

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Jack of all trades Master of 0
Member Since: Jul 09, 2008

I am getting a Presonus Project (8 xlr inputs), and would like to dedicate four inputs to drum mics (agree?). There are many 4-piece kits for about $100, and I was wondering if anyone had any good or bad experience with any of these:

>CAD Pro-4 Drum Mics, $90
>CAD Premium 4-Piece Drum Mics, $140
>Nady DMK-5 Drum Mics, $100
>Digital Reference DR-DRM4 4-Piece, $100

I have no knowledge of which brand is better than the other.
Also, is this the best way to go for under $150? Will these pick up the cymbals easily even though they are mounted on the toms? (I'm new here, give me a break, ok...?!)
Thank you in advance for any feedback.

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Since: Mar 12, 2008

Aug 06, 2008 03:42 pm

I own the cad premium set and I love em. But other people will say different since its not shure or AKG. These mic packages concentrate on the drums, so you would want an overhead mic(s) to really capture cymbals well (generally condenser microphones) I use MXL condensers cuz they are affordable and sound lovely, Also there is the Karma K-micro stereo pair which is prolly your best bet since I think you get a stereo pair for $26. I'm biased to nady mics tho since ive never seen one work =).

I tune down down...
Since: Jun 11, 2007

Aug 06, 2008 04:44 pm

I have a 7 piece CAD drum kit set that I got for $150. It's the pro version...

Hell, I'd sell them to you if you lived near. I love(d) them, but I have upgraded.

Czar of Midi
Since: Apr 04, 2002

Aug 06, 2008 08:14 pm had a very nice set for a good price. If they still don't have it in the clearance section or specials section you can look at some of the K-Micro's from them for drum mic's. I use them and a few others here have as well. They are killer for the price.

Jack of all trades Master of 0
Since: Jul 09, 2008

Aug 06, 2008 09:30 pm

All, I really appreciate the quick replies. Glad to hear the CAD premiums are good. There aren't any mics available on the karmaaudio clearance site anymore, but thanks for telling me of this brand. I see the $26 mic pairs... but I'd be lying if I said I'm not skeptical...

Back to the origianl mic 'sets', if they focus on the toms more than the cymbals, how I can properly capture everything using only 4 inputs on the sound card (5 at the absolute most). Maybe just 2-3 overhead mics and 1 kick-drum mic?

Hey CynicEidolon, I'd love to take 'em if you live in Atlanta...

Since: Mar 12, 2008

Aug 06, 2008 11:15 pm

5 is perfect bass drum 3 toms and an overhead, but since your getting the presonus why are you limiting yourself to 4-5? that bad boy has 8 like you said.

Hold 'Em Czar
Since: Dec 30, 2004

Aug 07, 2008 12:49 am

how big is the drum kit?, and what kind of room will ya be in? oh, and what style of music/sound are ya lookin' for?

Jack of all trades Master of 0
Since: Jul 09, 2008

Aug 07, 2008 10:25 am

I'm a Pop/Alternative (especially 90's) guy. Looking for a tight sound, not boomy. The drum set is pretty basic (snare, kick, 3 toms, hi-hats, 1 crash, 1 splash, 1 ride, one china).

The reason I can't use more than 4-5 of the presonus inputs is because I need an input for vocals, one for lead guitar, and one for bass. I would like to leave another input available for a 2nd guitar, which is why I'd like to use only 4 for drums (or 5, max).

My studio-to-be is in a finished room of a basement (nice absorbent carpet!) about 25'x25'. I'll update my page here with a list of gear if anyone is interested.

I like the idea of 1 kick, 3 toms, and 1 overhead mic. Would 1 overhead mic be sufficient for the cymbals?
Since: Feb 07, 2005

Aug 07, 2008 11:11 am

If it were me, I would go this route...

Spend what you have on a decent pair of overheads and forget the rest. Add additional mics as you can afford them.

Since: Apr 03, 2002

Aug 07, 2008 11:12 am

gotta have one in the kick...other than that, yeah, good overheads would do the job.
Since: Feb 07, 2005

Aug 07, 2008 11:18 am

ya, one on the kick would be good too. Maybe make a speaker mic and use a blend of that with Drumagog (thinking budget). The room shape may be a bit of a problem though. Because of that I think you can only get so good of a drum sound anyways.

Jack of all trades Master of 0
Since: Jul 09, 2008

Aug 07, 2008 12:35 pm

The 2 overhead mics + 1 kick mic sounds like the best route. I could always position another mic somewhere later if I feel a particular drum isn't being picked up properly.
BeerHunter, I like your 'Drive Away' song, how did you do the drums? Are they real or digital?

For the two overhead mics, SM47's quickly come to mind. Are there others that won't break the bank?
Sorry for all the questions, your help is really appreciated.
Since: Feb 07, 2005

Aug 07, 2008 12:54 pm

"Drive Away" has real drums that were recorded in a real studio. I have not been able to get this good of sound at home no matter what I try. This is why I was saying that you will probably only be able to get a "so so" drum sound. Even with an awesome set of mics you can only take it so far. HOWEVER, you can get very close using the recorderman technique.

Drive Away drums used the following mics.
Room Mics = AT4033
Spaced Pair = AKG460
Kick = AKGD112
Snare Top and Bottom = SM57
Hi-hat = AKG451
Hi and Low Tom - Audix D2
Floor Tom = ATM25

I bought a pair of Apex 180 pencil mics awhile ago for just over $100 and they work pretty well.

I sure others will have a better recommendation. I highly recommend the above noted mics but it is a really expensive combination.

Mikey Spencer
Since: Apr 26, 2007

Aug 07, 2008 03:10 pm

only use 3 mics. you should already have a large diaphram condenser for vocals so.... use that right above the head of the drummer (probably about 6 inches) and buy 2 SM57's... one on kick one on snare. or a PG52 on kick but if you get 2 57's you'll save $20 and be able to use it for stereo miking guitar cabs and such. but this miking scheme won't fail you. to me, it's the only way unless you're spot miking every drum.

if you dont wanna drop $200 of SM57's (even though i'd reccomend it, they're tried and true) you could get these. they should work well

Czar of Turd Polish
Since: Jun 20, 2006

Aug 07, 2008 04:44 pm

I have one of the Cobalts mentioned for snare, $50 for a pair is a great deal and I would say they are very comparable to a 57.

Jack of all trades Master of 0
Since: Jul 09, 2008

Aug 11, 2008 12:25 pm

I have decided to start with 2 overhead mics (probably the Cobalts...) and a kick drum mic. I'll add a 4th later if needed.

Thanks for all the advice, hopefully I can return the favor soon.

Since: Aug 13, 2008

Aug 13, 2008 11:14 pm


Here is a clip of a cover song I recorded at home using Sonar and some of those long Labtech mics that clip on top of a pc monitor. They actually have good sound. But the trick is to bring down the volume on each mic well low enough to avoid distortion. It doesnt matter if the level is too low. It can be brought up later using Sonar and effects can really juice them back up. I ran two of the labtechs into my soundcard and recorded the drums. Then recorded one instrument at a time until finally using a labtech for vocal dubs.


Since: Apr 06, 2007

Aug 18, 2008 12:40 pm

I dont know about you guys, but in my case the AKG D112 in the kick drum is a must have. Sometimes ill use the Shure Beta52, but only when i need a more "clicky" type of bassdrum.

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