Setting Up the live drum kit at Upper Brown Street

In the latest live music engineering lesson, the focus was on setting up and miking up a drum kit. Miking up and sound checking a drum kit is one of the most time consuming parts to engineering a live band.

A key part that was learnt from the lesson was organisation of time; with miking up the drum kit efficiently and safely.

Here are some points that I learnt about miking the drum kit. Some of them I already new, but were made a lot more obvious in a live sound situation.

  • The Bass drum mic should be close to the bass drum, as to get a better sound and for the stand to take up as less a room a room as possible.

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  • The hi-hat microphone should be a condenser rather than a dynamic microphone and should face the opposite end to where the drum is sitting of the hi-hat as to capture a more crisp sound, when the hi-hat opens and closes.

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  • The overhead microphones should be aiming at the cymbals rather than capturing the whole drum kit.

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  • The microphone cables should not be strained at any point, as it is a safety hazard. They instead should be wrapped around the mic stands, looped neatly near the mic stands, and slack from the mic stand to the power source as to create a safer and more efficient way of using the microphones.

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