For me, the bass drum is the heart of the song. It’s what drives the song and keeps the mix together. So, when I’m setting out to record my music, I need to make sure I get the perfect kick. But how? The truth is, there’s no right or wrong way about it. Once you know the basic rules, observation, experimentation and and brainstorming are the key. But what are the basic rules?
First, you need to make sure the kick is tuned properly. It needs to sound great naturally before you try to get a good sound through the mic. A good source will produce a good recording.
Once the the drum is tuned and set, choose your mic. A dynamic mic, which can handle loud sound pressure levels, is the typical choice. Classic dynamic mics for the kick drum are the AKG D112, Shure Beta 52, and the Sennheiser 421. If you decide to go with a condenser mic, be mindful that the sound pressure may hurt the fragile condenser diaphragm. Follow the basic rule of thumb; use it only if you can put your ear in front of the sound sourse without hurting your hearing. That being said, good condenser mics to use are the Neumann 47 FET and PZM microphones.