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Do you want to improve the quality of your drum recordings? Adding room microphones will help capture the room’s sound and give your drum recordings a more natural feel.
But, how do you know which room microphones to buy? And, how can you afford them? In this blog post, we’ll discuss how to find a good pair of room microphones for drums that are both affordable and high quality. Stay tuned!
1) Coles 4038 Stereo Pair
The Coles 4038 is a legendary ribbon microphone that is great for drum room miking. For rooms, utilize a spaced pair to get a big, smooth stereo sound.
The result gives a soft yet punchy sound that is also great for overhead microphones. The Coles 4038 is an excellent choice for drum room miking because it has a low sensitivity to the ambiance and produces a clean, clear sound.
2) Shure KSM32 Stereo Pair
Shure KSM32s are excellent drum room microphones that have a cardioid polar pattern. In addition, these mics have a low-frequency filter which is helpful for recordings that need more bass.
The Shure-quality construction and the 15dB switches pad make the Shure KSM32 one of the best drum room mics on the market. I highly recommend them for a new pair of drum room microphones for anyone in need. They are a great value and will provide you with years of trouble-free operation.
3) Audio-Technica AT4050 Pair
Sounds incredible throughout its wide frequency range.
Audio-Technica’s AT4050 is a large-diaphragm condenser microphone that delivers exceptional clarity and transient response. In addition, it features a fixed cardioid pattern that rejects off-axis noise and coloration.
The AT4050 also has a 10dB pad and a low-cut filter that help to reduce noise and unwanted rumble. The result is a clean, transparent sound that is perfect for capturing the nuances of drums in a room setting.
In addition, the Audio-Technica AT4050 is an excellent choice for drum room microphones and is sure to capture the full range of your drums’ sound.
4) Earthworks TC20mp Pair
Small-diaphragm Condenser with Omnidirectional Polar Pattern (Matched Pair)
Earthworks TC20mp microphones are excellent drum room microphones. They have a small-diaphragm condenser, which allows them to handle massive SPLs and produce uncolored recordings.
They also have an omnidirectional polar pattern, which ensures that they capture the natural sound of the drums. However, they require 24-48V phantom power, so check that your audio interface can provide this before you purchase them.
Earthworks TC20mp microphones are an excellent choice for drum room mics, and they will help you produce high-quality recordings of your drums. They also work great on drum overheads, and overall, they’re some of the best drum microphones available.
5) AEA R88 MkII Stereo Ribbon Microphone
Large Ribbon Stereo Microphone perfect for a drum room mic.
The AEA R88 MkII Stereo Ribbon Microphone is an excellent microphone for capturing the natural sound of drums. In addition, the microphone has a high SPL rating, ideal for capturing loud drums.
The AEA R88 also has a great stereo spread, allowing you to capture a wide range of frequencies with one microphone. This makes it perfect for drum room microphone applications. Overall, the AEA R88 is ideal for anyone looking for a high-quality drum room microphone.
6) Beyerdynamic M160 Pair
Thanks to its smooth, natural sound, Beyerdynamic’s M 160 is a popular choice for drum room microphones. A stereo pair of these microphones can capture a wide range of frequencies, from the deep rumble of the kick drum to the sharp snap of the snare.
The Beyerdynamic M 160 rejects off-axis sounds well, making it easier to achieve a clean, focused sound. Ribbon mics are often used in pairs, and the Beyerdynamic M 160 is no exception.
A stereo pair of Beyerdynamic M 160s can provide a detailed, immersive sound that brings out the best in any drum kit.
7) Neumann U87 (Mono or Stereo)
Neumann U87s are great for overheads and room mics.
The Neumann U87 is one of the most popular drum room mics. The mic is well known for its clear and transparent sound, and it can be used in either mono or stereo setups.
Many engineers swear by them for drum room mics, as they provide a classic sound that is very versatile. While they are not the cheapest option, many users feel that they are worth the investment due to their quality and consistency.
So whether you are recording in a studio or live setting, the Neumann U87 pair is an ideal option for your room mics.
8) AEA R84 Passive Ribbon Microphone
AEA’s R84 is a large ribbon microphone that provides a marvelous clarity and richness of sound that is perfect for capturing the warm sound of drum shells.
Its smooth, 3D-sounding reproduction of drums in a room setting is second to none, making it an essential tool for any engineer or producer looking to capture the true essence of a drum recording.
The AEA R84 is also an excellent choice for any situation where a high-quality, large-diaphragm microphone is needed, such as recording choirs or orchestras. With its superior sound quality and versatile applications, the AEA R84 is a must-have for any serious audio engineer or producer.
9) Neumann TLM102 (Mono or Stereo)
The TLM-102 is an affordable entry to Neumann's revered sound.
If you’re looking for a great mic in your drum room, the Neumann TLM 102 is a great option. It’s a large-diaphragm condenser mic that sounds great on drums and can handle high SPLs.
It has a balanced and natural sound, ideal for stereo or mono room setups. Plus, it’s less than half the price of Neumann’s top-of-the-line U 87. So if you’re looking for a great-sounding, high-quality mic that won’t break the bank, the Neumann TLM 102 is a perfect choice.
10) sE Electronics T2
The sE Electronics T2 is a flawless microphone for drum room recordings. It’s a large-diaphragm condenser, so it captures all the detail and nuance of the drums. And because it’s a condenser, it has lightning-fast transients, which is excellent for capturing the attack of the drums.
The sE Electronics T2 is also Neutral sounding so that it won’t color the sound of the drums. It’s also versatile – it can be used for stereo or mono room setups. And it’s affordable so that it won’t break the bank. So if you’re looking for a perfect microphone for drum room recordings, the sE Electronics T2 is a great option.
That’s it for our list of the ten best room microphones for drums! We hope this article has helped you in your search for the perfect microphone for your next recording session. The Coles 4038 stereo pair is a top pick for most engineers, but it’s pricey (same with the Neumann U87s). If you’re starting out, maybe skip on the room mics. But if you want something more budget friendly, go with the Earthworks set.
If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to leave them below. And don’t forget to share this article with your fellow drummers and engineers!