boosting the kick drum?!?

Posted on

Member Since: Jan 17, 2004

hi guys, im recording songs with my band and i like to do a lot of double bass on the kick drum. Can u tell me how i boost the kick drum so its more predominant in the song (like metallica, if you listen to them te bass drum is very obvious, but it doesnt affect the listening of the other instruments). If i simply turn the volume of the kick drum up, it sounds horrible and speakers/headphones 'fuzz' when it plays the louder bass drum.
All opinions much appreciated
thanks

[ Back to Top ]


Administrator
Since: Apr 03, 2002


Jan 29, 2004 12:51 pm

Scoop out the mids...

Bohemian
Member
Since: May 04, 2003


Jan 29, 2004 12:51 pm

a boost around 80 hz should do it
and you could give it some High end to make it more obvious..

Greetings Presley

bace135 in the house tonight!
Member
Since: Jan 28, 2003


Jan 29, 2004 02:36 pm

I usually get the present, knocking kick by doing a couple things. First, eq the bass and the kick drum so that they don't drown each other out. The two suggestions above are pretty good, but each kick is different, so experiment with the EQ range for boosting and cutting. Then I usually turn it up a bit in the mix. And finally, in the master, I will boost low EQs where the kick is sitting to really make it stand out.

And depending on how you want the kick to sound, a little! reverb on the kick can make it sound good as well.

a.k.a. Porp & Mr. Muffins
Member
Since: Oct 09, 2002


Jan 29, 2004 02:48 pm

Yes, scoop out part of the bass guitar track where the kick drum is most predominant. Also, the guitars should be rolled off to make room for both the bass and kick drum.

Member
Since: Jan 17, 2004


Jan 29, 2004 03:54 pm

ok, thank guys. ill give it a go.

Member
Since: Dec 23, 2003


Jan 31, 2004 06:49 pm

I agree with what was said above. Maybe try 100hz boost if 80 is too boomy. Scoop out the mids as dB stated. I like to cut 200hz (that just always sounds like a boxy sounding frequency to me) And If it's that Metallica sound you are going for you will want to give the high end a boost at around 3k. That will give it that click. Also compress it. Let the initial trasient attack though and just compress the body of the sound.

Contributor
Since: Dec 30, 2002


Jan 31, 2004 07:35 pm

try taping a 2p (largeish flat) coin to your kick drums beater when in the studio - this will give it a definate click sound.

jues

...bringing sexy back
Member
Since: Jul 01, 2002


Feb 01, 2004 06:56 am

ive always wondered, does the edge not eventually damage the skin?

Administrator
Since: Apr 03, 2002


Feb 01, 2004 07:00 am

I do it the other way, I attach a coin to the head right where the beater hits it (except on the opposite side the beater hits it.

...bringing sexy back
Member
Since: Jul 01, 2002


Feb 01, 2004 07:08 am

interesting...

Czar of Midi
Administrator
Since: Apr 04, 2002


Feb 01, 2004 01:24 pm

Yup, tried it both ways and I prefer the coin inside where the beater hits as well. Although the coin on the beater itself does give a more defined click it will eventually fall off as most drummers I have worked with have a very heavy foot and can blast their way through a sice or two of gaffer tape in no time. But the coin on the inside seems to work just about as well for getting a little better beater smack sound recorded.

Contributor
Since: Sep 09, 2002


Feb 01, 2004 05:22 pm

what's gaffer's tape?

where can i get it?

is it anything like duct tape?

and does it keep hostages in place better than duct tape?

Chief Cook and Bottle Washer
Member
Since: May 10, 2002


Feb 01, 2004 09:48 pm

I have this odd little spot mic which was marketed by Peavey some time ago. It is made especially for recording the kick malet. It has an equalizer that plugs between the actual mic head and the mic cord. It has sat in the mic box for a long time until I finally tried using it per one post Jues made. I found I can EQ it to get just the sharp strike sound and use a second mic to the rear of the kick for the "boom". The two mixed and eq'ed together offer a wide range of very nice results. I havn't found another like it yet however. An odd tiny mic at the end of a flexable rod for positioning.

Eat Spam before it eats YOU!!!
Member
Since: May 11, 2002


Feb 02, 2004 07:17 am

I just finished remixing a band I rented my equipment to while I was in Minneapolis... I use SONAR 2XL and I replaced the kick, snare and floor tom with DXi's useing the "extract timing" function. Then to get the kick to stand out I routed the kick, vocals, and music out though different virtual mains... I used Db-audioware.com dynamics processor on the kick and muic main and used the sidechain abaility to duck the music... so when the kick hit and triggers it's compressor the music gets compressed seperatly... so the volume of the music is cut just as he kick hits and then the volume returns to normal before you notice.

Thanks Noise for telling me how to do the extract timing. I'll probably never use a real kick again... :)

Czar of Midi
Administrator
Since: Apr 04, 2002


Feb 02, 2004 10:08 pm

Jamie, gaffers tape is slightly less sticky then Dunt tape, so no it wont work the hostage thing. And yes it does stick very well though but it is easier to get off the floor or carpet without leaving that nasty residue common to most duct type tapes. But it is very similar to Duct tape.
Feb 03, 2004 12:54 am

ive found that cutting a hole in the front bass drum head and using 2 mics for the bass works quite well. one to capture the attack of the kick drum and another to grab the back end of the bass. kind of the concept that walt is talking about. only i use a md 421 for the "mallet" or attack, and a beta 52 on back end. taping drums takes away their ability to resonate, thus making them sound like suitcases, not drums. you just have to find good mic placement, eq it right and mix it somewhere 5% of Center when mixing down. i dunno thats what i do. it works.

Contributor
Since: Dec 30, 2002


Feb 03, 2004 02:04 am

:O

You're 14 and have a Senn 421 which you can 'waste' as a rear kick mic?!

You shoult really be using a high quality mic like a 421 on your floor tom, a simple 57 will easily suffice for a rear kick mic.

jues.

Czar of Midi
Administrator
Since: Apr 04, 2002


Feb 03, 2004 06:31 pm

Your very welcome zek.

Also, agree with jues.

a.k.a. Porp & Mr. Muffins
Member
Since: Oct 09, 2002


Feb 03, 2004 06:43 pm

Quote:
taping drums takes away their ability to resonate, thus making them sound like suitcases, not drums


That is many times a desireable effect.

Member
Since: Jun 20, 2003


Feb 03, 2004 09:03 pm

OK, Hopefully I'm not taking this thread on too much of a tangent, but I've got a related drum sound question. I've recorded a couple of songs with the drums mixed down (via my mixer) to a single stereo track before digital recording (Sonar). I'm pretty happy with the drum track and all the other performances on these songs, except for one problem: the toms were mixed too low and have too soft an attack. I need to figure some way to accentuate the toms and sharpen their attack. EQ'ing (scooping the mids) doesn't seem to work well because it makes the cymbals too bright and kick too boomy. I'm experimenting with some multi-band compression, but still haven't hit on the right formula yet. One problem I'm running into is the compression amplifies the low level stuff (which includes the snare and cymbal sustain), thus muddying up the whole drum sound. Anybody know of the magic formula for fixing this?

Chief Cook and Bottle Washer
Member
Since: May 10, 2002


Feb 03, 2004 11:00 pm

Bob,

Your on the right track with the multiband. Although I am sure that I would have limited results myself. Once you have all of the drum "voices" mixed together it is very hard to alter a single voice; at least per my experience. If you had each "voice" on a seperate track you could do a lot more with atack and release times in the compression. Maybe even some creative triggering.

Member
Since: Oct 26, 2003


Feb 04, 2004 01:04 am

okay...so, back to the original question...so your trying to make it sound more boomy or more of a metalic sound? from what you wrote, i get the idea that you want the bass drum to be in your face, but not to much, just enought from the song to stay with the song right? get what im sayin?


any how...how about you put a towel over the kick drum...or stuff a blanket inside..to me when i have used it makes it sound more punchy...dig the mic right in there, if you got a hole...use it! if ya dont, get to mics. one right on the beater, and another on the other side, if you do that your going to have to put the mics out of phase, so make sure your mixer can hang....the shure 58 will work jsut fine...anyuthing else is up to you...

Czar of Midi
Administrator
Since: Apr 04, 2002


Feb 04, 2004 09:43 pm

Bob, do you have everything mixxed down or just the drum tracks? If you just have the drum tracks mixxed to stereo you might be able to salvage the toms but it is going to take some work on your part.

You will need to go in and magnify the wav file so you can pinpoint each tom hit, then highlight the sections you wish to try and EQ and just EQ the portion('s) that have the tom hits on them. It is a lot of work but it can be done. But as I said, you are gonna need to dedicate some time and patience to it.

Member
Since: Jun 20, 2003


Feb 04, 2004 11:29 pm

Thanks Walt & Noize - Yes I do have a mixed-down stereo drum track, with cymbals, kick, snare & toms -- and yes I had thought about grabbing the tom hits individually. One strategy for doing that would be to clone the drum track and use a volume envelop to pick them out, then EQ and/or multiband compress. There would be some sustain from the snare & cymbals mixed in with the toms, which I was thinking I might be able to get rid-of with some noise gating. Then mix the result back in with the original drums. Does this have a chance of working?

The other approach I was considering (which would be a little less labor intensive) would be to clone the drum track, shelve the highs & lows to get rid of the kick & cymbals, and do everything I mentioned above except for the individual volume envelops. Lots of stuff to try here.

My apologies again for distracting this thread. The reason I chimed in here originally was that it occured to me that some folks may have run into the same problem with the kick (wanting to sharpen the attack), after it's already recorded & mixed in with the rest of the drums.

Czar of Midi
Administrator
Since: Apr 04, 2002


Feb 05, 2004 09:34 pm

Either solution would work, it is a toss up on which would be easier. Both ways are gonna take some time. I guess the shelving trick might make it a bit faster as you loose a couple of the bits and make it easier to target the toms.

And its not distracting the thread, we refer to it as hi-jacking a thread. It happens all the time here. And you did stay on the topic of drums.

Related Forum Topics:



If you would like to participate in the forum discussions, feel free to register for your free membership.