What equipment to use to mic my drums?

I have an old Rogers 7 pc set and just bought a 5 pc pack of CAD mic's cheap off marketplace. I graduated college this spring so funds are pretty short, but I am trying to put basically everything towards gigging. My band has played mostly outdoor shows and miking has been a necessity. Thankfully we've had sound guys take care of it for most gigs, but they tend to be expensive. As I build onto my portfolio of equipment, I'm trying to find speakers/PA system that can handle the noise that we're looking for but it's all expensive. Since there's probably no way around the steep cost, what is the best sound equipment to use for drumming indoor and out? If I'm going to put money in, I want to make sure what I get is worth it!

- Kane
 
I have an old Rogers 7 pc set and just bought a 5 pc pack of CAD mic's cheap off marketplace. I graduated college this spring so funds are pretty short, but I am trying to put basically everything towards gigging. My band has played mostly outdoor shows and miking has been a necessity. Thankfully we've had sound guys take care of it for most gigs, but they tend to be expensive. As I build onto my portfolio of equipment, I'm trying to find speakers/PA system that can handle the noise that we're looking for but it's all expensive. Since there's probably no way around the steep cost, what is the best sound equipment to use for drumming indoor and out? If I'm going to put money in, I want to make sure what I get is worth it!

- Kane
Sidenote: I also am trying to get into recording and it's been a whole lot to take in. Any thoughts on that are totally welcome too
 

Bo Eder

Platinum Member
Two different things, so pick one. If you want to gig, you need simple gear to amplify your sound. If you’re recording, then the gear will be complicated. If you have a good amount of money, things like the Yamaha TF console can easily do both, but those are expensive.

this is kind of a trap though. You’re already playing drums. You also want to be responsible for providing live sound for the rest of the band? And if you’re getting booked for outside events, the event should already have an engineer and system anyway as you will never have enough.

but if you go medium simple, just get one of those prepackaged systems from Musicians Friend, give yourself three microphones (bass drum, snare drum, overhead, and the band gets the rest. That should be good enough for a backyard party.
 
Two different things, so pick one. If you want to gig, you need simple gear to amplify your sound. If you’re recording, then the gear will be complicated. If you have a good amount of money, things like the Yamaha TF console can easily do both, but those are expensive.

this is kind of a trap though. You’re already playing drums. You also want to be responsible for providing live sound for the rest of the band? And if you’re getting booked for outside events, the event should already have an engineer and system anyway as you will never have enough.

but if you go medium simple, just get one of those prepackaged systems from Musicians Friend, give yourself three microphones (bass drum, snare drum, overhead, and the band gets the rest. That should be good enough for a backyard party.
Thank you! I just want to be responsible for my drums, but I'm not sure that the PA system we use can take all the extra mic's. I'm from an incredibly rural area where these outdoor gigs are hit or miss on sound systems and indoor gigs never have them provided. I'll look into the products.
 

Bo Eder

Platinum Member
Thank you! I just want to be responsible for my drums, but I'm not sure that the PA system we use can take all the extra mic's. I'm from an incredibly rural area where these outdoor gigs are hit or miss on sound systems and indoor gigs never have them provided. I'll look into the products.
Well, if $$$$ is indeed short, I’m not sure I’d go through the depression. 😉
 

alparrott

Platinum Member
Thank you! I just want to be responsible for my drums, but I'm not sure that the PA system we use can take all the extra mic's. I'm from an incredibly rural area where these outdoor gigs are hit or miss on sound systems and indoor gigs never have them provided. I'll look into the products.
I also live in a small, rural area where venue-provided sound systems (when they exist/are provided) are hit and miss. Bottom line, the band needs to be prepared to do their own sound for the majority of places you'll be likely to play. This may mean pitching in with money or pooling money from gigs to buy a PA system and enough speakers, monitors, and all the bits and bobs to make it work for you in all situations.

As far as miking drums for most small to mid-size gigs, two or three mics will probably do the job. I almost always mic the kick because it's the underpinning for the band and travels the least compared to cymbals and snare. If needed you can throw an overhead on the kit as well and you should be good for 90% of local gigs. This also means you're not taking a ton of inputs on the mixer board.

If you do a larger venue or an outdoors gig where you need a fully miked kit, your CAD set (plus some overheads) will do just fine. Nobody's going to complain that you weren't using a Beta 52 or an SM57. if your band's PA doesn't have many channels in, a separate smaller mixer with 6-8 channels is a nice thing to have for the drums, where you can set all the levels and then send a two-channel stereo mix to the main PA - again, minimizing your input footprint.
 

jdavis

Member
I almost always mic the kick because it's the underpinning for the band and travels the least compared to cymbals and snare. If needed you can throw an overhead on the kit as well and you should be good for 90% of local gigs. This also means you're not taking a ton of inputs on the mixer board.
^^^^This!

Depending on the room, sometimes just a kick mic is enough. Especially during rehearsals, IMO.
 

Iristone

Well-known member
I used to have some success gigging with a simple Glyn Johns/Recorderman technique with an SM57 inside the kick, another SM57 over the snare, and a pair of Røde M5's (since upgraded to Oktava MK-012's but not used on stage yet) for low-hanging, stereo overheads. IME it provides a reasonably full-range sound for live sound reinforcement.
 

BGDurham

Well-known member
If you or your band buy a system who is going to operate it? My band practices in my house so the Behringer XR18 mixer and Electro-Voice ZLM-15 PA speakers stay in my house and since I am there most of the time I am the de facto sound guy. We are not recording but hope to start in the next few months. For gigging, our system seems to work well and they are common so there are tons of how-to videos for it on Youtube. But beware, someone will have to learn it and operate it and it may be you. But also remember, there are several other "band tasks" that have to be done and other band members can do these (getting gigs, music director, transportation, etc...).
 
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