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PRODUCTION EXPO 2013: There’s no ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ way to place mics on your drum kit but if you stick to the following guidelines you’ll be well on the way to getting a pro sound in no time.
The classic studio kick drum mic is the AKG D112 or it’s older relative the D12, and the orthodox position is on the back of the drum (the pedal’s on the front) about level with the rim and slightly off-centre. Some drummers don’t use a back skin which makes life easier and some cut a small hole out for the mic to get a look-in.
Kick drum mics all have an exaggerated low frequency peak for the boom and a high frequency peak for the click and because these peaks are at slightly different frequencies different mics can suit different kicks, so it’s worth trying different mics if you have them to hand. Alternative mics include Shure Beta 52 & 91 and the Electro-voice RE20, all of which are dynamic mics with large diaphragms suited to low frequencies.