Strange mics for strange times

or snares, at least

I was being lazy yesterday, and was messing around with the kick drum positioning of an Audix D6 mic (a killer mic for kick, really). I was so lazy that I didn’t bother to change the mic when I started messing around with my cheap old steel Tama snare. And the strangest thing happened. The snare sounds killer through the kick drum mic. Punchy as ####. Especially when the mic is pretty much on top of the snare drum head. Big old thwack! All that low end, made it almost sound like it was being recorded to tape.

So much for rules I guess. What other mistakes should I try to make? :D Suggestions?

Here’s what to-do TomS…

Take/Record the Highest reselution “Snare Hit” You can manage… Render it to 24-bit… 16-bit… and e-Mail it over to me… I want it for this Drumulator Application I’m gonna get… I will use it as a TomS Snare Sample… As well, set a mic out in the room (in the Sweet-Spot) and send that over to me in 16-and-24 bit res… then I can Mix-and-Match the Snare-and-Room to taste… and… On-the-Fly… so to speak… All Drumulator needs is One Good Hit, as the sample…

We need to be able to hear some of the “Bottom” of the snare to get some “Hair” sound with the sample… Maybe, do all of that on three separate tracks… So as… to be able to mix the Tracks-to-Taste

Who knows?? we’ll get a page going and post some Drum Samples… Call it “Tom’s Tub Samples”… or something…??? :;):?


I have an Audix D6 and I never thought of trying it on snare but I’d have to get another one because it’s always in use for the kick when I’m recording drums. I’ll try it on snare though, next time I’m recording drums, to see what kind of sound I get.

The D6 has a radical eq response. It’s got a severe dip in the upper bass which takes the “cardboard box” sound out of the kick. Apparently Tom likes that eq curve on his snare.

I find that I usually eq the snare track to some extent - often to get a fatter sound much like the D6 would produce. Using the D6 would perhaps mean that I could use little or no eq but I don’t have a problem with using n-Tracks’s eq. It sounds good to my ears and doesn’t hog the CPU to much.

there are NO RULES - so as there are no rules you cannot make a mistake only a discovery - only SHEEP follow -

Dr J

Hey, isn’t that a rule, Dr? :D

I dunno, Bill, you really want one of my skanky sounds? S’Ok with me. :)

Anyway, I just posted Yesterday’s Pathetic Attempt To Write, Record, Mix and Master a song using the D6 on the snare, here:

The song is “Far Beyond” - Bill, don’t listen to the lofi version, download the mp3 - the lofi conversion they use really really really really sucks. :)

Hi TomS:
That Tama Snare is Classic Vintage… They made a couple of sizes, if I remember… there was a 14" and a 15" or 16" to compete with a Premier (English) one… They were quite deep… Then they made a Thin one… maybe 3" or 3 1/2" deep… They had nice Rims and Hardware on them, if I remember… They were a “Standard” in a lot of studios… Guys that I remember, used the “Heal” of their sticks, instead of the “Tip’ed” end… They showed their snares “No Mercy”…


If this is vintage, then I think I should put it on ebay. It just sounds thin to me. Maybe that’s why the D6 works on it, to my ears. Well, I just made an extra 200 dollars that I get to spend on whatever, so I bought an old EV 630 for 30 bucks, and I could spend the rest on a nicer snare. Something wood, perhaps.

See? I’ve said here before that there is no such thing as a “vocal mic” or “kick drum mic”. There are microphones. Oh, so many microphones. Big and little, omni, figure 8 and every pattern in between, powered and not…microphones.

Put one up and push record. Don’t like it? Try another. What could be easier? The more you do it (and try new placements and applications) the more you learn about your gear and how to use it effectively. I really love microphones. I think I have at least 30 of 'em and there’s more I want…

I couldn’t agree with you more, clav. It’s amazing what sound you can get if you have the time to experiment and think out of the box when it comes to microphones and placements. I’ve even tried using an 8" EV speaker as a kick mic - with not too bad results. My next experiment (when I find the time) is to make up that rig Sloom showed us awhile ago using a boundary suspended inside a wooden ring.


Well, clava, I have about 250 bucks to spend on a mic, and I can always save up a little more. What should I get next?

Speaking of mics, I think you were the one who mentioned to me that you had tried a Blue Bluebird and were not entirely impressed - was that you? Anyway, I got one used last summer - I have to say, I have tried it on a lot of things, and I haven’t yet found it to be “the” mic for whatever…

Quote (clavastudio @ Jan. 21 2007,13:39)
Put one up and push record. Don't like it? Try another. What could be easier?

Ehhh, replicate that killer take I just can't use because of my stupid mic choise? :D :laugh: :D

Quote (TomS @ Jan. 21 2007,17:55)
Well, clava, I have about 250 bucks to spend on a mic, and I can always save up a little more. What should I get next?

Speaking of mics, I think you were the one who mentioned to me that you had tried a Blue Bluebird and were not entirely impressed - was that you?

I don’t have any B.L.U.E. mics Tom. Someone brought a Dragonfly in for a session once, but I had no real experience with it.

Cool mics that might be had for modest sums (used. Most of these are out of production…)

shure 535 (omni dynamic)
Sennheiser MD406, 408, 411 (dynamics all. most of the Sennheiser 400 series are cardioid)
Stedman N90 (LD dynamic cardioid)
Avenson STO (omni condensor)
Beyerdynamic M88 (medium diaphragm dynamic hypercardioid)
Beyerdynamic m380 (medium diaphragm dynamic figure 8)

I use these all the time. Take your time shopping. Money spent wisely is often only spent once. Good luck…

What I find especially amusing is that in almost every case different types of microphones all seem to be good, just different, whenever I choose to experiment.

Anything goes basically.

Another thing is that whenever I notice a crappy sound with one mic it probably doesn’t turn into good sound by just changing the microphone.

Heil PR 40…heard one…sounded fab!


The Heil mics are really inexpensive as these things go, too…hmm…summer overtime, summer overtime… :)