Sound Reinforcement (PA) - A Guide to Making Live Sound Work For You

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by simoncroft, Aug 2, 2019.

  1. simoncroft

    simoncroft Tele-Meister

    Age:
    63
    Posts:
    341
    Joined:
    May 29, 2011
    Location:
    Worthing, SE England
    Screen Shot 2019-08-12 at 19.24.52.png

    Dynamic And Condenser Mic Performance Compared


    Diagram S shows the operating principles of the two types of microphone design used in Sound Reinforcement (or Public Address). The more common of the two is the ‘dynamic’ mic, shown at the top. It is the cheaper of the two designs to manufacture, and is extremely robust. Unsurprisingly then, it is an exceptionally popular choice, especially when budget is a consideration.

    Dynamic mics are also very easy to understand, because the concept is basically the same as a loudspeaker but in reverse. However, the real-life engineering that goes into a dynamic mic is a lot more refined than the diagram implies. (No-one has really produced a mic that looks like a small woofer since about 1920!) Rather than a cone, a modern dynamic mic using a lightweight plastic diaphragm that looks a bit like a tweeter for a Hi-Fi speaker.

    No matter how light the material used to create the diaphragm, in a dynamic mic it still has to be coupled to the coil of wire that moves over a permanent magnet, thereby creating current. The added weight of that coil, and the former it sits on, is one of the reasons a dynamic mic can’t rival the high frequency response of a condenser mic. With mass comes inertia, meaning that the diaphragm becomes more resistant to movement as the frequency increases. To put it another way, as the air pressure changes faster and faster, the diaphragm assembly moves less and less. Let’s see how that compares to a condenser design.
     
  2. simoncroft

    simoncroft Tele-Meister

    Age:
    63
    Posts:
    341
    Joined:
    May 29, 2011
    Location:
    Worthing, SE England
    ‘Condenser’ used to mean the same thing as ‘capacitor’ but the term is no longer used in generals. For some reason, ‘condenser’ mics continue to be known by this name, even though they could logically be termed ‘capacitor’ mics.

    As a general design principle, a capacitor has two plates with a voltage passing between them. In the condenser mic, one of these plates is very light and vibrates in response to changes in sound pressure. This is the diaphragm and it is formed from a very thin sheet of plastic that is coated with gold, or some other highly conductive metal. (Forget thou, we’re talking microns here.)

    The back plate is a rigid sheet of metal and is usually perforated to allow air to pass, so that it does not inhibit the movement of the front plate (ie – the diaphragm).

    When the diaphragm vibrates in reaction to changes in air pressure, it changes the distance between the two plates and therefore changes the capacitance. (When the plates move closer together, the capacitance increases and a charge current occurs. When the plates move further apart, the capacitance decreases and a discharge current occurs.)

    The capacitor can only work if a DC voltage is applied to the system. This is why condenser microphones require either an internal battery, or an external Phantom Power supply, as often found on mixing consoles. The standard voltage for Phantom Power is 48v DC, but some condenser mics can work on voltages as low as 18v.

    One of the reasons the diaphragm of a condenser mic is that it has nothing attached to it, unlike the diaphragm in a dynamic mic. In fact, the only thing that touches the condenser diaphragm is the ring on which it is mounted, not unlike the way a drum head (drum skin, if you prefer) is stretched across the shell of the drum. As a result, it has very little mass and responds readily to even very high frequencies.
     
  3. simoncroft

    simoncroft Tele-Meister

    Age:
    63
    Posts:
    341
    Joined:
    May 29, 2011
    Location:
    Worthing, SE England
    Screen Shot 2019-08-12 at 19.27.55.png

    If we refer back to Diagram Q, earlier in this thread, you’ll see the difference between the typical frequency response of a high-quality dynamic mic (blue line) versus a condenser (yellow line).

    So, if condenser mics are that much better, why haven’t they taken over from dynamics as the main stage mic? Part of the answer is cost, not just the mics themselves but also in providing phantom power for them, a feature you don’t often see on smaller mixers and mixer/amps.

    Also, condenser mics are very ‘sensitive’. The upside of this is that they convert more of the incoming sound pressure into usable signal. The downside is that they are easier to damage than the more robust dynamic designs. This is not just about mechanical shock, although dropping a condenser mics certainly isn’t recommended. Simply allowing particles of spit, foodstuffs, and the like, to get stuck onto the diaphragm of a condenser mic will start to degrade its performance. (Basically, you’re increasing the mass of the diaphragm, albeit, in a very unscientific way…)

    Even excessive sound pressure level can damage a condenser mic. Take another look at Diagram S and imagine that the distance between the two plates of a condenser mic is actually tiny. It doesn’t take a genius to work out that a kick drum with a 22-inch diameter, when operated by a drummer with a taste for music on the heavier side, can generate an SPL high enough to propel a few microns of mylar diaphragm straight into the back plate of a condenser mic. This is not good news.

    There are obvious ways we could design a condenser mic that will withstand a higher SPL. Possible solutions include making the diaphragm thicker and moving the back plate further away, but the result is likely to be a mic with poor sensitivity and limited frequency response. So far, all we’ve achieved is a condenser mic that is more expensive to produce than a dynamic but fails to out-perform it!

    Amazingly, there are professional condenser microphones that will withstand SPLs of more than 145dB with almost no distortion, without compromising frequency response or sensitivity. Part of the secret is to use a very thin diaphragm but to put it under increased tension. You might imagine that such precise engineering comes with a big price tag, and you’d be right.
     
  4. simoncroft

    simoncroft Tele-Meister

    Age:
    63
    Posts:
    341
    Joined:
    May 29, 2011
    Location:
    Worthing, SE England
    As a rule, in SR applications, you can keep condenser mics for cymbals, strings and woodwind. You could say this is all the stuff that needs to go into the washer and be set to ‘delicate’. For everything else, it can go on a ‘hot wash’, meaning there’s a dynamic mic that will do the job as well, or better. One of the big exceptions is ‘star’ singers, especially if they do not normally use rock-style close miking techniques. You can’t expect to be thanked if you tell a big-name opera or folk singer: “Your SM58* is the one with the band of gaffer tape round it!”

    *The Shure SM58 is a great mic for many applications, just not necessarily the best choice in that particular situation.

    Next post, let’s have a look at some specific ways of miking the artists on stage, and also the issue of whether a DI box is more appropriate.
     
    beagle likes this.
  5. 24 track

    24 track Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Posts:
    13,465
    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2014
    Location:
    kamloops bc
    Nice work simon keep going!
     
    simoncroft likes this.
  6. Tim G

    Tim G Tele-Meister

    Posts:
    232
    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2011
    Location:
    johnstown
    There are tons of knowledge here. The most important thing to remember is GILGO,
    Garbage In, Loud Garbage Out.
     
    simoncroft and uriah1 like this.
  7. 24 track

    24 track Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Posts:
    13,465
    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2014
    Location:
    kamloops bc
    here is a tidbit when dealing with bass frequency saturation a quick formula .....
    take the longest single dimention of the venue ( say 200 feet) divide it by the speed of sound at sea level ( approx 1130 feet /sec) 200/1130 = 17.7 HZ that bass frequency will leak into every corner of the venue , into every microphone and you cannot EQ it out

    sorry, Simon I couldnt help it!( My bad)
     
    simoncroft likes this.
  8. simoncroft

    simoncroft Tele-Meister

    Age:
    63
    Posts:
    341
    Joined:
    May 29, 2011
    Location:
    Worthing, SE England
    Excellent tip! Thank you. :)
     
  9. simoncroft

    simoncroft Tele-Meister

    Age:
    63
    Posts:
    341
    Joined:
    May 29, 2011
    Location:
    Worthing, SE England
    Microphone techniques – Drums

    There is a lot of advice available on-line about how to mic up various instruments. Some of it is very good, and some of it is well informed but refers to one brand only (which seems fair enough if it’s a manufacturer’s web site). My only criticism of a lot of this advice is that it does a great job of telling you how to do the job, but not such a good job of explaining why. As a result, it can be hard to apply the advice when you find yourself in a slightly different situation to the one described.

    For instance, you may find yourself working with a supplied system where you have to work with the mics you’ve got, rather than ones you may have read about. In circumstances like that – when you probably don’t have time to experiment – it’s useful if you can make viable choices for each instrument or voice you need to mic.

    As I’m writing this thread mainly for guitarists, it might seem reasonable to start with miking acoustic guitar. Actually, I’m going straight for the jugular and looking at mic techniques for drum kits (drum 'sets' in North America). Due to the diversity of percussion within a modern kit, and the great variety of mics you could employ, this looks like one of the most daunting areas for any would-be sound engineer. As it happens, it’s not so hard once you’ve broken the job down into different areas of the kit.

    (If you really want to make life easy for yourself, you can buy a complete set of mics designed specifically for drums, but it isn’t necessary to do that. As we’ll see, many of the popular choices of drum mic have other applications in Sound Reinforcement.)

    Let’s start with the kick drum (aka bass drum in Europe), and then move onto the snare. That will give us a solid foundation on which to build the rest of the kit.

    Kick drum

    First off, what mic to choose? Every mic manufacturer of note makes at least one model specifically recommended for kick drum but ‘classic’ choices includes the AKG D12, AKGD112, E-V RE20, all of which are dynamic mics with extended low-end frequency response. If you happen to have them available, any high quality condenser mic should do the job well, providing it will cope with an SPL of around 145dB. Personally, I’d choose a dynamic mic for live use, do to their ‘bullet-proof’ construction and relative affordability. Stage vocal mics are not generally a good choice, due to their restricted low-frequency response, but they will come to no harm if you have to use one ‘in an emergency’. The big exception to this is the Sennheiser MD421, which does a fair job. Note that it has a rotary bass roll-off switch near the connector. You definitely do not want to roll off any low end!
     
  10. simoncroft

    simoncroft Tele-Meister

    Age:
    63
    Posts:
    341
    Joined:
    May 29, 2011
    Location:
    Worthing, SE England
    Screen Shot 2019-08-13 at 17.39.05.png

    A common approach when recording kick drum is to pull a pillow or cushion inside the drum and place a mic on top. While it works well, I’m not a fan of this approach on a live stage because it throws away a lot of the tone and projection the drum is capable of.

    Diagram T shows a bass drum mic mounted on a small telescopic boom stand, which makes it possible to get the mic inside the drum and close to the beater head. This is obviously only possible if the front head (the ‘resonant’ head) has been removed, or has a hole in it big enough to insert a mic. Let’s look at this set-up first, and then deal with the question of how to mic a kick drum that has both heads fitted.

    Once you’ve chosen your mic, the big question is where to place it. As the diagram suggests, the variables are how close to place the mic to the head, how close to the center, and whether the mic is square in to the head, or at an angle. These variables are similar to the ones you find when miking up a guitar cab, where the center of the speaker cone sounds a little different to the edge. However, there is one significant difference, and it’s so fundamental to miking up drum kits that I’m going to give it an ‘NB’.

    NB – Every mic you use on a live drum kit will pick up the whole kit to some degree! So the snare mic will pick-up a fair amount of hi-hat, the overhead mics will certainly pick-up the whole kit and not just the cymbals… and the kick drum mic will pickup mostly the snare and toms, albeit they way they sound from inside the kick drum (or just in front of it, if there is a resonant head fitted to the drum).

    So please bear my ‘NB’ in mind when I say that the closer you put the mic to the head, the more beater ‘slap’ you’ll capture, while positioning it further away will capture more of the tone of the drum itself, along with anything else that is audible from that position. As a starting point, I’d suggest placing the mic about an inch from the center of the drum head, then consider moving it if you do not get the result you are looking for.

    When miking a bass drum from outside, usually because there is a resonant head in place, you can find you get a more balanced sound with the mic a foot or so away from the front head. You will get a lot less ‘slap’ from this position, but that may be exactly what the drummer intends. A good sound engineer helps the musicians to put their sound across to the audience, rather than imposing a ‘one size fits all’ approach.
     
  11. simoncroft

    simoncroft Tele-Meister

    Age:
    63
    Posts:
    341
    Joined:
    May 29, 2011
    Location:
    Worthing, SE England
    Screen Shot 2019-08-13 at 17.42.19.png

    Snare drum


    What mic to choose? The old-school approach is to use a dynamic vocal mic, and the one a lot of engineers prefer is the Shure SM57. However, there are more modern alternatives with extended high frequency response, such as the Audix D1 condenser mic, or the Beyerdynamic M201. Some are small enough to clip on a small gooseneck to the rim of the drum, which has the advantage of reducing the number of mic stands clustered around the kit. As a general rule, condenser mics with a small diameter work better in this application than large capsule designs. This is because, in close miking, large capsule condensers can exhibit phase issues from one side of the capsule to the other. These normally become insignificant when the mic is placed further away.

    Diagram U shows the typical placement for a snare drum mic, which is about 1 ½ inches from the head and facing the center where the sticks will hit. From a purely acoustic point of view, it doesn’t matter overly where around the rim the mic is mounted but placing it as far away from the drummer as possible will help to keep it out of harm’s way. It is also worth considering the relationship between the snare mic and the hi-hat, in that swiveling the snare mic somewhat towards the bass drum will help to reduce the amount of spill from the hi-hat.

    Some engineers prefer to also mic from underneath the snare drum, which produces a deeper sound but also picks up more of the sizzle from the snares themselves. Because the top head will be moving away from the upper mic at the same time as the bottom head is moving towards the lower mic, it is usually desirable to reverse the phase of the lower mic at the mixing console input. However, it is unwise to assume an exact 180° phase shift when two mics are used, because other factors such as physical distance can skew the result. For this reason, some engineers avoid the dual mic approach to obtaining a snare sound. A few engineers prefer the sound of the snare drum miked from below only. Most engineers feel that the impact of the sticks on the batter head is a very important part of the sound and choose to mic from above, if only one mic is used.

    (Even if only one mic is used on the snare drum specifically, there can be phase problems between the snare mic and the overhead mics, which will pick-up the snare, but from further away. That’s a subject we’ll get to later.)

    Miking a snare drum too closely can cause a very unnatural sound, due to the emphasis of some overtones that are not normally noticed when listening to a snare drum directly in a room. Even when intelligently miked, snare drums are often greatly enhanced by careful ‘tuning out’ of frequencies that give the sound an irritating ring, using the sweep capabilities of the equalizer’s mid-bands.

    One of the difficulties in generalizing about snare drums is that they come in a considerable range of sizes and shell materials, and can take on very different sound characteristics depending on how they are tuned and played. In addition, the desired sound from a snare drum varies greatly from genre to genre. If we take jazz, country & western and AOR as three general examples, it soon becomes obvious that one act’s idea of a great-sounding snare is going to be an absolute disaster if transferred straight to the other two acts.

    This is another example of why a sound engineer needs to understand what the act wants to sound like, rather than always miking and EQing the same way. This is especially true of the snare, as it is one of the signature sounds in any mix that involves a drum kit.
     
    beagle and 24 track like this.
  12. jwp333

    jwp333 Tele-Holic Silver Supporter

    Posts:
    902
    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2013
    Location:
    Richmond, VA
    How do you feel about having a pillow in the drum as a dampener? Any good reason to do so if you have a stand that can hold the mic in place?
    Also, is it a bad idea to mount the mic just outside the hole in the resonant head? Sometimes that is where our drummer has put it.
     
    simoncroft likes this.
  13. David Barnett

    David Barnett Doctor of Teleocity

    Age:
    63
    Posts:
    11,062
    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2003
    Location:
    The Far-Flung Isles of Langerhans
    It can be an effective last resort if the drummer doesn't know how to tune his stuff without excessive damping.


    It's a legitimate option, depending on the drum, the size of the hole, the mic and the desired result. It won't give you that heavy metal "CLICK", but if you're looking for more of a "whump" it's okay. Care must be taken to avoid excessive air velocity in the vicinity of the vent.
     
    simoncroft likes this.
  14. simoncroft

    simoncroft Tele-Meister

    Age:
    63
    Posts:
    341
    Joined:
    May 29, 2011
    Location:
    Worthing, SE England
    In a live situation, I feel putting a pillow in the kick drum reduces it to a sort-of 1970s demo studio drum – quite a useful ploy back then for getting a decent sound onto tape if you're short of compressors, but not really representative of what a kick drum sounds like. I wouldn't even record that way for most material today. As I said in post #130:

    "A common approach when recording kick drum is to pull a pillow or cushion inside the drum and place a mic on top. While it works well, I’m not a fan of this approach on a live stage because it throws away a lot of the tone and projection the drum is capable of."

    I agree with @David Barnett when it comes to placing "the mic just outside the hole in the resonant head". If it produces the desired sound, that's fine. Most times, I'd put the mic on a boom through the hole and closer to the 'beater head' (if that's even a real term!). If the drum has a front (resonant) head, it's going to form part of the sound, regardless of mic placement. How much depends on where you place the mic.

    There are no absolute right and wrong answers. :)
     
    24 track likes this.
  15. beyer160

    beyer160 Friend of Leo's

    Posts:
    2,663
    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2010
    Location:
    On Location
    This video lets you hear the difference between different kick drum miking positions (use headphones or speakers with decent low end extension)-



    In the studio I always use two mics- one inside for the click, one on the resonant head for the boom. I don't do that live, though (but on larger stages some guys do).
     
    simoncroft likes this.
  16. simoncroft

    simoncroft Tele-Meister

    Age:
    63
    Posts:
    341
    Joined:
    May 29, 2011
    Location:
    Worthing, SE England
    Very good demo, and well explained too. Mr Waymire makes a point I'd forgotten to mention, which is to avoid the 'node' in the center of the drum. Same applies to rooms, as any standing waves will be most prominent there.

    Thank you for posting.
     
  17. simoncroft

    simoncroft Tele-Meister

    Age:
    63
    Posts:
    341
    Joined:
    May 29, 2011
    Location:
    Worthing, SE England
    Screen Shot 2019-08-14 at 18.49.03.png

    Tom Toms

    Compared to the Snare and kick drums, toms are relatively undemanding. In fact, for jazz it is often better not to mic them at all and let the overhead mics put over the sound of the toms. But in rock, close-miked toms are a defining part of the sound, so you’ll general want a mic for each tom.

    What mics to choose? Your target sound and available budget will determine your choices here. If you want plenty of weight to the sound, with minimal issues regarding spill, dynamic vocal mics work well. The usual suspects include Shure SM57 and Beta56, and Sennheiser MD421. For a more detailed sound, condenser mics can be a good choice, but their extended frequency response will also increase the amount of spill from the cymbals. Condenser mics such as the Shure Beta98 are small enough to clamp-mount – meaning a mic stand you can kiss goodbye – and have the advantage of a goosenecks that can aid accurate positioning.

    In terms of mic placement, toms are not radically different to a snare, but capturing the stick strike is less important. Combine this with a need to minimize cymbal spill and you are likely to find angling the mics more steeply, towards the outer third of the head works better than aiming dead center.

    Hi-hats and overheads

    The good news is that miking hi-hats is fairly easy. The less good news is that cleverer people than me could probably write a book about overhead mic techniques! It’s not that it’s so hard to get a good result, more that there are lots of ways to get there.

    One thing that hi-hat and overhead miking have in common is that there are cymbals involved, and anywhere there are cymbals you can bet on there being major amounts of high frequency energy (although less so for the hi-hat). That’s right, this is a job for condenser mics!

    Hi-hats

    What mics to choose? As far as drum kits go, the hi-hat is not one of the louder guns, so you don’t have to worry overly about how much SPL the mic can take. Because you’ll be miking fairly closely, a small condenser with a small diameter capsule tends to work better than a large one. Diagram V helps to explain why small capsules often work best for close instrument miking, while large capsules work better in more distant miking techniques. (However, it is a very generalized explanation. Close miked vocals can sound great using a large capsule condenser mic, while small capsules can be very effective in many mic configurations where large capsule condensers might seem the most obvious choice.)


    Back in the day, an AKG CK1/C451 was often the condenser of choice for hi-hat recording. (An AKG C1000 does a similar job.) These days, almost every mic manufacturer offers a small capsule condenser that is suitable for hi-hats. There are also dynamic mics with extended high frequency response that makes them suitable– notably the Shure SM7B – but these are generally expensive units, so you are unlikely to choose them on cost grounds only.
     
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2019
  18. simoncroft

    simoncroft Tele-Meister

    Age:
    63
    Posts:
    341
    Joined:
    May 29, 2011
    Location:
    Worthing, SE England
    Screen Shot 2019-08-14 at 18.45.44.png


    Diagram W shows two possible positions from which to mic a hi-hat. Although the overhead position is one I’ve most often seen, I’ve had good results with a mic to the side, which is where most of the sound energy radiates from. It won’t take you long to try both and make your own mind up. In either instance, I’d suggest a distance of around 8 inches as a starting point. Get much closer and the fact that the upper hi-hat rides up and down is likely to caused unwanted shifts in frequency and/or level. Also, when miking from the side, you are effectively pumping air into the mic if you get too close! Whichever technique you go with, pointing the mic away from the snare will help to give maximum separation.

    NB – If your hi-hat mic has a bass roll-off, use it! There’s nothing much happening down at the low end apart from stage rumble and maybe some mechanical noises from the hi-hat mechanism. Yes, you can also get rid of this stuff at the desk but taking it away before it even reaches the mix position is even better.
     
  19. simoncroft

    simoncroft Tele-Meister

    Age:
    63
    Posts:
    341
    Joined:
    May 29, 2011
    Location:
    Worthing, SE England
    Overheads

    Before we get into the question of which mics to use, let’s take a look at the whole role of the overheads and why they are so critical to a good drum sound. Taking an absolutely purist approach, two matched microphones – or one stereo mic – should be all we need to capture the sound of a drum kit. After all, two mics are all we need to get a good sound from a grand piano. However, that assumes that the sound we hear when standing in front of a drum kit is what we want the audience to hear – in other words, that we can treat the kit as one giant musical instrument, and regard our role as being to simply deliver that natural sound to the audience. If that were the case, all we would really need to do is put a couple of mics approximately where the ears of a listener would be. This is shown as ‘ideal audience position’ in Diagram X. You could say those mics are sitting in the best seat in the house.

    There are two problems with this assumption. One is that there are generally better listening positions than any that the audience will ever enjoy. (Just don’t tell the audience…) Many engineers have found that if only one mic position is going to be used, somewhere above the drummer’s head works best.

    But the bigger problem with our ‘pair of mics’ scheme is that the natural acoustic sound of the kit is not what we expect to hear in many styles of music. Today, our reference points as listeners are often a combination of music that has been recorded in the studio and concerts where the drum kit is heavily miked and greatly modified at the mixing desk. So we have come to expect that the kick drum will be higher in the mix than it would be acoustically (especially if heavily damped), that the snare will have no real ring to the shell but will sit in a lushly reverberant space, toms will pound mightily… or whatever modifications to the ‘basic’ sound of the kit we might want to make.

    Without muddying the waters too much, I’d now like to compare two philosophies to overheads, which I’ll call ‘purist’ and ‘rock’.

    Screen Shot 2019-08-14 at 18.52.58.png
     
  20. simoncroft

    simoncroft Tele-Meister

    Age:
    63
    Posts:
    341
    Joined:
    May 29, 2011
    Location:
    Worthing, SE England
    The purist approach

    Out in the real world, a ‘purist’ mic set up will be something like the overheads shown in Diagram X, plus a kick drum mic and a snare drum mic to allow for a bit of tweaking. This tells us something very significant about the overheads: they are not there simply to pick-up the cymbals; rather they pick-up the entire kit. The kick drum and snare mics are there simply to allow some additional adjustment in sound and level for these two drums. Because of this, it is more useful to consider the overheads as the ‘main’ mics and the other two as ‘spot’ mics that are there to augment the main drum mix.

    The rock approach

    The other approach is to treat the overhead mics as only for the cymbals, and to roll off as much of the lower frequencies on those mics as is possible, so as to minimize the amount of drum spill into the overheads. In this scheme, the individual mics are no longer simply ‘spot mics’, they are more like DI boxes, in that the idea is to keep each drum as separate as possible. This tends to be the preferred approach in very high volume environments and where heavier amounts of EQ are used on individual drums.

    The split between those two approaches become most apparent with the way the mics are treated at the mixing console. To an extent, the way the mics are placed is similar with both approaches, although there is arguably less need for close drum mic techniques in genres such as jazz, where huge drum sounds created with heavy compression and perhaps gated reverb are not part of the engineer's brief. Hence, a natural sound is a bigger priority than high levels of separation between each drum in the purest approach.

    Looking again at Diagram X, it shows typical overhead mic positions for a stage set-up. Ideally, the mics should be at least six feet from the floor, or higher to get the best blend of cymbals between the two mics. Typically, these will be right above the kit and facing downwards, or slightly in front of the kit and facing inwards. (These ideas may have to be modified if the drummer’s monitors are causing feedback problems. In that situation, it is also useful to question whether moving the monitor wedges is less destructive than moving the mics.)

    Going back to the ‘purist’ approach, there are ways of combining two microphones that will give a more coherent stereo image than the ‘two spaced mics’ most commonly used in live Sound Reinforcement. You may have heard of a ‘crossed stereo pair’, for instance. While these are valuable techniques in the recording studio and may be applicable to low volume stage environments, I’m not going to look at them in detail here. I’d rather discuss the most viable ways of going about the job than get sidetracked into techniques you ‘could consider’.
     
IMPORTANT: Treat everyone here with respect, no matter how difficult!
No sex, drug, political, religion or hate discussion permitted here.


  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.