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    My drums help!!!


    So I need some opinions on my drum samples I recorded,I want to know what you guys think, and what can I do to enhance the sound, I feel like I still haven't gotten them to have the "BIG drum" sound, so please let me know what i can do to improve them! all feedback is greatly appreciated!

    http://soundcloud.com/ohdangjoey/drums-sample

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    what do you mean by 'big drum sound' though?

    different styles of music need different sounds.

    First thing that struck me is if you want the drums to sound punchier you could try taking off the reverb off the Bass Drum which will make the whole thing sound more in your face.

    Where do the drum samples come from?

    Great programming by the way - are you a drummer? you program like a drummer woot)

    staircase2
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    The drums sound seems pretty 'Big' to me.

    I think the downfall is the actual individual sounds themselves; they sound terribly MIDI.

    Try using a program such as Addictive Drums. They have a demo version you can use for a short period of time, but you could bang out a myriad of sequences.

    Hope this helps..

    dp


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    With bedroom producers like many of us here, it is true that we can't really afford to go out there and get our sounds mixed, but mixing something is quite analogous to "editing" a piece of writing. The composer had best leave it to someone else.
    That said, I do understand that most of us like to mix our own sounds together.
    For your piece, here's what I'd suggest.
    - The first thing to make it sound big is the volume. All your drum sounds (kick, snare, hats) are at the same level. Vary them a bit to give the whole programming a dynamic feel. And bring the overall level a bit higher as well.
    - Panning: the panning seems fine to me (hats, toms, nicely panned; kick to the center, almost mono -- that was all OK).
    - cut down on the reverb. I am no expert in mixing, but through what little mixing I have done, I've found that applying varying amounts of reverb to your sounds comes across as very effective. For instance, in a "technical" type of composition, the snare, when spaced out, receives more reverb than the other elements, and it generally tends to sound nice. It's a rather artistic question, that of reverb, so I'll leave you to deal with it, but do decrease the overall reverb level. You usually want the bass (lower) frequencies to have less reverb so the loop sounds less muddy, and when you can, try to apply individual reverbs to the hats, snares, kicks instead of passing the whole loop through a reverb. It is OK to apply reverb to the whole loop, but usually when you are mixing the drum alongside bass, piano, guitar etc (as in a whole song).
    - Equalizing: again, this is my personal opinion, but I think EQing forms the "melodious" part of the rhythm itself. I know it seems a bit weird to read it like that, but what I'm really saying is that when you sweep through the frequencies, you will sound that the kick sounds nicer when a particular frequency is (very minutely so) boosted or cut. Same goes for other elements. Trying playing around with EQ individually on hats, snare and the kick.
    - Compression: Parallel compression brings about the spark in a drum loop. Take my word for it. It may not sit well in the mix, so if you're going to upload to freesound, I'd suggest upload the dry sample, but parallel compression helps heaps. Youtube that concept if you don't know what it is and look at a few different videos to get a firm grasp.

    What I've mentioned are very basic techniques to get a proper drum sound, and then you can make it sound big depending on, well, what your version of big is (could be high reverb, simple delays, or extreme parallel compression).

    Hope this helps!

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    Allow me to build a bit on Afleetingspeck's good advice.

    A mix is, by definition, a sum of various parts. For a mix to be good, all of these elements have to sit well together. It is very possible, and very common, to produce a horrible mix from elements that sound amazing in isolation.
    So what does this mean?
    Mostly it means that if your drums sound good in isolation, they won't necessarily sound well in a mix together... And that if your loop has been finetuned and sounds great, when you mix it with somethign else it may need more work done to it so that all parts fit again.

    Here is the golden rule: "the more elements there are in a mix, the smaller each of them has to be."
    Smaller can mean various things: volume, frequency range and width.

    Frequency range is very important. When two instruments overlap on a lot of frequencies they start to compete for space. Boosting one may well drown the other. Increasing the volume on both will only make the mess worse, and likely affect even more frequencies and clash with even more instruments...
    EQ id your friend here. ESPECIALLY cutting EQ.

    for BIG sounds and maximum volume...
    Use your ears, but also a good spectrum analyser can help here too. The trick is to EQ cut everything you don't really need from each sound so it leaves as much space for all the other sounds - so that then, each sound can be as loud as possible without clashing with the other instruments.
    Bassdrum - You can probably cut anything below 30Hz (mos systems do not reproduce these frequencies anyway, and you can't really hear them BUt they take up headspace, limiting how loud your mix can be before clipping).
    Snare - listen to the snare toghether with the bassdrum, preferably on separate channels so you can apply a spectrum analyser to each. What frequencies are present for your bassdrum and snare?
    You need to find the 'heart' of your snare. Put a low cut EQ on your snare and slowly raise the cut frequency while listening to the snare and bassdrum pattern. when the snare begins to sound weak, bring the cut freq down again. Then leave it there.
    You hav ebasically cut all the low freq from the snare which you don't need and would clash with the bassdrum.
    Can your snare benefit from a little EQ boost too? Use a little EQ boost and slowly move it up in freq (wide gentle boost curve, OK?) - what you are looking to boost will depent on what sound you are after. Do you want your snare to sound woody and boxy, or more fizz and sizzle? It may not need any boost at all. Somtimes 2 little peaks work best (one for body and one for fizz)...
    You may need to revisit the snare once you add hihats and cymbals.
    Also, you may want to lower the EQ cut freq on parts where the snare sounds without the bassdrum.

    For toms you should apply a similar technique to the snare. Be extra careful in terms of clash with the bassdrum. Maybe they should not sound together at all. Can you remove/reduce the amount of bassdrum during tom fills?
    In difficult cases, they will only work together using compression techniques (out of scope from my post here today).
    Another key element to the toms is the sustain/tail. Long tails clash more with other instruments, short tails sound artificial. Yuo need to finsd a balance and what works best depends on your genre and the other sounds in the mix.
    By the way, some of your toms around 3/4 into the drum loop have very short tails. They sound strange. Especially as other toms earlier in the loop have much longer tails. See if you can fix this.

    For hihats and cymbals use the same technique as for the snare - now you should be comparing a channel with the sum of the bassdrum + snare + toms with the cymbal channel.
    Hihats are less likely to clash with other instruments. So I conentrate ,y discussion on the cymbals.
    Low cut is important here to preserve headspace adn declutter the mix. Normally anything below 400Hz can be cut, but use your eyes and ears as each set of sounds is different. As for the snare, find the frequency where the cymbal begins to sound weak, then lower it a bit. If there are parts where the cymbal sounds on its own, you may need to lower this freq considerably so that it does not sound weak or artificial.

    By now you have EQed each sound in your drumset to allow as much space for all other sounds as possible.
    At this point you can apply compression to 'glue the drumloop together' and increase power. i recommend parallel compression. As afleetingspeck suggested, search online for tutorials, get some compressor plugins (free ones preferably, to begin with) and experiment. All plugins are different, all mixes are different, so trial and error really is the recipe here.

    Note:
    I am assuming taht you would like to apply compression to the whole loop and reverb to the whole loop. This is NOT the only possible technique.
    If you are doing this, two things to bear in mind:
    1) if the whole mix is going into the reverb you need a pre-filter/EQ. Some reverbs have one built in, but if not, one is easy to setup.
    Place the reverb on a send channel. Put an EQ before the reverb with a high and a low cut. Start with the EQ completely open (all frequencies go through) and 0 volume going into the reverb send channel.
    I am assuming your definition of big sound means 'as much reverb as possible'. Increase the reverb until it starts to sound muddy. Now increase the low cut freq. Keep doing this until you reach the limit (either you can't remove the 'mud', you have got too much reverb already or it starts to sound weak or 'radio-like')
    Then tweak the top end. Lower the high cut freq to remove excess fizz/crackle/harshness.
    Can you now increase the overall reverb a bit more?

    Note:
    This kind of loop takes up a lot of 'space' in the mix. It should sound BIG but is unlikely to sound good with anything else added on top since it probably already takes up too much space.

    Another perhaps more useful trick to explore is gated reverb - search it up.
    I don't recommend using this on the whole mix, should work well on individual drums. Particularly on snares and even toms.
    Gated reverb can sound a bit strange. I recommend always having a bit of overall reverb applied to the whole mix to avoid that (don't forget to hi and low cut on that master reverb).

    hmmmm..... erm..... I forgot...
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    I may be repeating what posters have already suggested above as I didn't read through.. But generally for a big drum sound there's a couple things to consider.

    * Rolling off unwanted low's & highs off Cymbals, Snares, Boomy Toms & Kicks. Killing;

    1. up to 40hz on kicks
    2. up to 100hz on snares
    3. up to 300hz on Hi-Hats
    4. up to 80 - 100hz on Toms

    * Layering drum sounds to achieve a fatter sound.

    1. Layering a sub kick with a pokey kick. (make sure they don't clash frequency wise)
    2. Layering a lower tuned snare with the original snare
    4. Layering a snare using a different stick, such as a rod, with a normal snare.
    5. Layering lower / high ride cymbals with the original.

    * Sub mixing is how you get the big sound. There's a number of ways to get this sound, the best results are with crushing a nice room mic on a sub bus. However you can:

    1. Send the kick & snare to a bus and aggressively compress them, then blend the signal with the original to taste.
    2. Send all the drums to a sub bus and use a saturation, or mild tape distortion plugin, in combination with a compressor to achieve a fat crunchy sound you can blend with the original.

    You can pretty much send anything to a bus and do this. Sometimes works out better if you slightly EQ the bus signal differently to the original too for it to sit better. If you want more 'snap' to your sound look at using a transient designer.

    There's lots of ways to achieve a fat sound, I won't go into EQing. Try get the sound right at the source first.

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    dingo1 wrote:
    ... Try get the sound right at the source first.

    That's the biggest, fattest, best(est) piece of answer anyone can give. Get the source right, and the rest of the process is WAYYYY easier.

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    afleetingspeck wrote:
    dingo1 wrote:
    ... Try get the sound right at the source first.

    That's the biggest, fattest, best(est) piece of answer anyone can give. Get the source right, and the rest of the process is WAYYYY easier.

    I said it first, albeit in a slightly more coarse way ^_^

    My words aren't worthy of credit, the above are however.


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    Almost forgot to mention on my previous post:

    If you're EQing make sure you do so AFTER compression otherwise the compressor will trigger on the peaks you've boosted. (unless you want to achieve a certain effect, where you want a specific frequency to trigger the compression). Generally speaking you should

    EQ (roll offs) -> Compress -> EQ (boosts and cuts)
    or
    EQ (Cuts) -> Compress -> EQ (Boost) smile

    That's what I like to do but, there are no rule's to audio production, just guidelines you may choose to follow smile *banana dance* - wish that emote was on this forum!

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    Head-Phaze wrote:
    I said it first, albeit in a slightly more coarse way ^_^

    My words aren't worthy of credit, the above are however.


    Your post was way too elaborate, man. tongue

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    Nice to see soo many people chipping in with good advice.
    You will notice, however, that the user who started the post seems to have disapeared.
    Maybe he is so busy trying out all these suggestions that he forgot to come back and say "thanks".

    hmmmm..... erm..... I forgot...
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    AlienXXX wrote:
    Nice to see soo many people chipping in with good advice.
    You will notice, however, that the user who started the post seems to have disapeared.
    Maybe he is so busy trying out all these suggestions that he forgot to come back and say "thanks".

    You know I notice this happens a lot in this forum.

    Users ask for advice or request a sample, only to disappear without a trace...


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    Aye, well. Hopefully more readers will find it useful too! smile

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    dingo1 wrote:
    Aye, well. Hopefully more readers will find it useful too! smile

    That's a very good thing you kindly pointed out, I learned a few things. Its great, different people have different ways of giving advice, all helpful in ways.


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    Head-Phaze wrote:
    dingo1 wrote:
    Aye, well. Hopefully more readers will find it useful too! smile

    That's a very good thing you kindly pointed out, I learned a few things. Its great, different people have different ways of giving advice, all helpful in ways.

    You have a really raw/crude sense of sarcasm, head-phaze. smile) Or maybe I'm reading too much into it.

    Anyhow, I think we should not expect thanks from anyone. It should be taken as a given that when you help for free, there's no added incentive for people to come back and say thanks. Just... don't expect anything when you decide to help anyone out. I mean I cannot stress this enough. Do not expect any thanks from anyone whatsoever. WHATSOEVER. grin
    Again. Don't expect thanks from anyone on a forum where free advice is given. People do not feel an obligation to respond back and say thanks. Those who do come back to say thanks, weigh them in gold.

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    afleetingspeck wrote:
    Head-Phaze wrote:

    That's a very good thing you kindly pointed out, I learned a few things. Its great, different people have different ways of giving advice, all helpful in ways.

    You have a really raw/crude sense of sarcasm, head-phaze. smile) Or maybe I'm reading too much into it.

    You are definitely reading too much into it.

    That was a genuine statement I made. No sarcasm involved grin


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