Old 06-03-2020, 05:37 PM   #1
thejericho13
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Hey everyone! Not sure if I'm in the right place for this question, so feel free to redirect me if I'm not, but I have a question about mixing drums.

My drummer can be a hard-hitter, and even though we have his recording setup and gain structure pretty nicely dialed in and levels are all even and clean, I've noticed I'm having an occasional issue with his snare.

It's not every hit, but there are times where - From what I can gather and guess - He's hitting the snare a little harder or in a slightly different spot, and it causes what sounds like clipping.

The wav peaks don't actually clip, they all look fairly even. But if you zoom in on them you can see that they are wider/thicker than the rest of the hits. I've got his kit EQ'd and mixed just where I want it, but these random snare hits that pop up in songs are a pain and I don't want to undo all the mixing work I've done on them and lose the tone just trying to fix these sporadic hits. I've been trying to wrangle them one-by-one by splitting them out from the track and adjusting the take volume, and I've tried compressing the hell out of them but it just makes the rest of the snare track lose a lot of pop and punch.

I've attached a screenshot of the snare track from a song I'm currently mixing and highlighted the hits that are causing the issue.

Any advice on this? Would love to get some feedback from you all!
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Old 06-03-2020, 11:01 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by thejericho13 View Post
Hey everyone! Not sure if I'm in the right place for this question, so feel free to redirect me if I'm not, but I have a question about mixing drums.

My drummer can be a hard-hitter, and even though we have his recording setup and gain structure pretty nicely dialed in and levels are all even and clean, I've noticed I'm having an occasional issue with his snare.

It's not every hit, but there are times where - From what I can gather and guess - He's hitting the snare a little harder or in a slightly different spot, and it causes what sounds like clipping.

The wav peaks don't actually clip, they all look fairly even. But if you zoom in on them you can see that they are wider/thicker than the rest of the hits. I've got his kit EQ'd and mixed just where I want it, but these random snare hits that pop up in songs are a pain and I don't want to undo all the mixing work I've done on them and lose the tone just trying to fix these sporadic hits. I've been trying to wrangle them one-by-one by splitting them out from the track and adjusting the take volume, and I've tried compressing the hell out of them but it just makes the rest of the snare track lose a lot of pop and punch.

I've attached a screenshot of the snare track from a song I'm currently mixing and highlighted the hits that are causing the issue.

Any advice on this? Would love to get some feedback from you all!


hello jericho

alot of works but you can replace those hit,by the right one..on the item



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Old 06-04-2020, 02:21 AM   #3
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There is not a lot of resolution given the time scale covefed by the graphic.
Could you zoom in to single 'good' and 'bad' hits at all to see more detail?

From the waveform presented there is not a significant difference in amplitude when in digital form.

Obviously your ears tell us there is an unwanted difference. Could it be that the (analogue) level early in the recording chain is so high that you are running into a saturation type of distortion prior to clipping, perhaps some inability of the mic or preamps to cope with the a very high level of the higher frequencies.

Holding back the gain in the early gain stages might help alleviate. Or if it is the mic a slightly further distance to the snare (or adding in an attenuator if there is one on the mic).
The level balance can be made up again in the mix relative to the rest of the drums.

Assumption here is that the snare hits actually do not sound like you hear!

Perhaps posting a high quality ( .wav file or similar) link to the audio snare track might help posters to hear the difference too, just as a suggestion.....

....or ^^^ the hard work suggested above to use existing tracks!
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Old 06-04-2020, 02:26 AM   #4
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Could be that he's overloading the microphone.

Like martmix said, you can replace those bad hits with better sounding ones. Good ol' cut n' paste!
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Old 06-04-2020, 08:44 AM   #5
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Thank you, guys!

Allybye - I'm attaching a link to a short sample from the song: Right around the 8-second mark is what is sticking out to me. Let me know if I'm just nuts or if you can pick out that clipping-like tone that comes through:

https://soundcloud.com/user-65723032.../s-IE95uMSYrTF

If I have to cut and paste some of the clean hits over these spots, it's not the end of the world, it doesn't happen too often in the songs so I can just pour an extra cup of coffee and do that haha.

Also going to talk to him about the mic setup and gain structuring, see if there is any issue there as well.
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Old 06-04-2020, 08:55 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by thejericho13 View Post
Thank you, guys!

Allybye - I'm attaching a link to a short sample from the song: Right around the 8-second mark is what is sticking out to me. Let me know if I'm just nuts or if you can pick out that clipping-like tone that comes through:

https://soundcloud.com/user-65723032.../s-IE95uMSYrTF

If I have to cut and paste some of the clean hits over these spots, it's not the end of the world, it doesn't happen too often in the songs so I can just pour an extra cup of coffee and do that haha.

Also going to talk to him about the mic setup and gain structuring, see if there is any issue there as well.
is it possible for you to post just the snare-audio,so we can hear really the sound..
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Old 06-04-2020, 09:02 AM   #7
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Martmix - Yeah, for sure - Here is the isolated snare:
https://soundcloud.com/user-65723032/snare-sample-2

I've got it gated to cut out as much of the hi-hat bleed-through as I can.
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Old 06-04-2020, 09:09 AM   #8
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With the low resolution image you provided, there does not seem to be any clipping. The level is about the same as the other hits. I think there's a flam (double hit). It can be seen in the waveform too: two close peaks. This could account for the difference in timbre.

As someone else said, there could be saturation going on before the signal hits the converters- that is, at the mic/pre level. Does your mic have a -10dB pad? If so, try to engage it and add a corrresponding gain in your audio card. If the mic is a rugged dynamic without a pad (like a 57), I'd guess the saturation is either in the pre or just not there.
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Old 06-04-2020, 09:41 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thejericho13 View Post
Martmix - Yeah, for sure - Here is the isolated snare:
https://soundcloud.com/user-65723032/snare-sample-2

I've got it gated to cut out as much of the hi-hat bleed-through as I can.
they say it at been removed..
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Old 06-04-2020, 11:23 AM   #10
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Martmix - Here's let's try that again, should work now: https://soundcloud.com/user-65723032/snare-sample-2
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Old 06-04-2020, 12:16 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by thejericho13 View Post
Martmix - Here's let's try that again, should work now: https://soundcloud.com/user-65723032/snare-sample-2
i think you can get a good result with a compressor (the sound is not cliping or distort..to me)

or

replace the sound with the others snare "hit" (alot of work..)

or also split eachs snare "hit" that you want to lower(then use the items volume to lower those snare "hit")


but to me,i would go for set-up a compressor..

thanks to share with us


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Old 06-04-2020, 12:56 PM   #12
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Neither a drummer nor Reaper expert me.........

Having had a listen and a closer look at the waveform I would agree with Juan.

From the Soundcloud sample it appears that there is no apparent distortion or limiting (that can be seen on such a complex waveform anyway that a snare produces) but it does show up two interesting things that supports the 'flam' double hit idea...not that I would have recognised it as such by ear!

1. The clean and unwanted waveforms have a much different form with the 'flam' one looking like at least two initial transients within the 'same' hit (a second looking like it follows on very quickly after the first)and the waveform of the hit is much longer as can be seen from the pix below the first (snapshot1) being the clean sound and the second the oddity!.

Conclusion: New drummer?...or rather seriously rerecord or just edit as was suggested earlier in the thread by Mart.
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File Type: png Snapshot_2.png (11.1 KB, 10 views)
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Old 06-04-2020, 01:28 PM   #13
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Maybe it was a deliberate flam but one hit was a lot closer to the microphone?

Hearing the overheads should clear up if it was intentional.
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Old 06-04-2020, 01:33 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by juan_r View Post
With the low resolution image you provided, there does not seem to be any clipping. The level is about the same as the other hits. I think there's a flam (double hit). It can be seen in the waveform too: two close peaks. This could account for the difference in timbre.

As someone else said, there could be saturation going on before the signal hits the converters- that is, at the mic/pre level. Does your mic have a -10dB pad? If so, try to engage it and add a corrresponding gain in your audio card. If the mic is a rugged dynamic without a pad (like a 57), I'd guess the saturation is either in the pre or just not there.
This is great, I'm going to see what I can do about potential saturation issues. I believe he is using an SM57 on his snare, and being that he's such a hard hitter I'm starting to lean toward him varying his attack too much on the snare and overloading the mic. Maybe adjusting gain in the audio interface/preamp will help with this?
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Old 06-04-2020, 01:35 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Allybye View Post
Neither a drummer nor Reaper expert me.........

Having had a listen and a closer look at the waveform I would agree with Juan.

From the Soundcloud sample it appears that there is no apparent distortion or limiting (that can be seen on such a complex waveform anyway that a snare produces) but it does show up two interesting things that supports the 'flam' double hit idea...not that I would have recognised it as such by ear!

1. The clean and unwanted waveforms have a much different form with the 'flam' one looking like at least two initial transients within the 'same' hit (a second looking like it follows on very quickly after the first)and the waveform of the hit is much longer as can be seen from the pix below the first (snapshot1) being the clean sound and the second the oddity!.

Conclusion: New drummer?...or rather seriously rerecord or just edit as was suggested earlier in the thread by Mart.
Haha, I'll tell him to hit the bricks, he's causing me too much stress! Really appreciate this response Allybye, I'm going to play with editing the tracks and see if I can salvage it.
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Old 06-04-2020, 01:37 PM   #16
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Maybe it was a deliberate flam but one hit was a lot closer to the microphone?

Hearing the overheads should clear up if it was intentional.

Yeah based on all you guys' awesome feedback in this thread, I'm thinking he's just hitting harder than his "top level" when he's soundchecking his gain prior to recording + hitting the snare head in a different place (like you said, probably too close to the mic). Seems like maybe some adjustments need to be made in his mic setup and interface/pre settings.
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Old 06-04-2020, 01:38 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by martmix View Post
i think you can get a good result with a compressor (the sound is not cliping or distort..to me)

or

replace the sound with the others snare "hit" (alot of work..)

or also split eachs snare "hit" that you want to lower(then use the items volume to lower those snare "hit")


but to me,i would go for set-up a compressor..

thanks to share with us


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Appreciate this, Mart! I'm going to add a little compression and do some manual adjustments and see how it sounds!
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Old 06-04-2020, 08:47 PM   #18
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Appreciate this, Mart! I'm going to add a little compression and do some manual adjustments and see how it sounds!
it will sound good jericho !

(the reacomp is really a good compressor..)




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Old 06-04-2020, 09:01 PM   #19
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I'd wager he's whacking the mic with his stick sometimes. Fix would be better mic placement, but you can always chop a good hit from somewhere else and splice it in. No one will ever know.
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Old 06-04-2020, 09:20 PM   #20
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foxAsteria might be onto something. The flam could be a 57 bouncing on the top head. At any rate, my advice is don't ever use your boutique condenser mic on that snare. :-P
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Old 06-04-2020, 10:21 PM   #21
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foxAsteria might be onto something. The flam could be a 57 bouncing on the top head. At any rate, my advice is don't ever use your boutique condenser mic on that snare. :-P
You mean you don't use U47s for snare top mikes? Man, I've been doing this wrong...
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Old 06-05-2020, 12:54 AM   #22
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You mean you don't use U47s for snare top mikes? Man, I've been doing this wrong...
Don't laugh - once I had my snare micd with a U67 (I wasn't the engineer). Didn't turn out *that* good
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Old 06-05-2020, 09:27 AM   #23
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Ah shit I had a dream I acquired a U47 for free but...it was just a dream.

Probably for the best; it would just be full of drumstick sized dents like my other condensers.
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Old 06-09-2020, 07:15 AM   #24
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it would just be full of drumstick sized dents like my other condensers.
Heh. I think I just heard one of my 421's make an audible sigh.


I sometimes mic the snare from the side with a large condenser. 2' away give or take. Height just above the top of the snare. Listen for snares balance for height. The hat also firing into this mic is desired when this works out. Gets a nice natural bright snare sound without having to put a top mic + bottom mic back together again. I like to cheat on the computer and time align the overhead pair to this mic when I do this.
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Old 06-09-2020, 07:44 AM   #25
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I quite like sticking a mic right by the vent on the side of a snare. You get a good mix of batter head and snare wires with very little hats.
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Old 06-09-2020, 08:29 AM   #26
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my attempt to polish the turd

don't know if this is possible with the original track
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Old 06-09-2020, 08:36 AM   #27
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I quite like sticking a mic right by the vent on the side of a snare. You get a good mix of batter head and snare wires with very little hats.
+1 on this too.
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