louderthangod wrote:How do you guys feel about mono overheads? The more drum recording I've done lately the more extreme panning is starting to sound unnatural. I won't be doing any rehearsal recording for at least a few more weeks so I'm trying to think of some new ideas. I've got one good ribbon (Beyer m160) that I've been thinking of trying a single, mono overhead. When I look it up it seems like lots of people think it's a great idea but when I watch videos of bands in the studio there are always a stereo pair of OH and often a pair of stereo rooms as well. I'd like the drums to sound a little closer and directly intimate.
Mono overhead on drums can work fine, it's just an atypical choice. So if you do it, you really have to plan everything else around that to work with/compliment it. Most recording engineers aren't going to make atypical or bold choices on drums, unless they're trying to be experimental. So usually it's done out of necessity and then there's a drive to make it work, so it usually does if the person is competent. Just try it out and experiment with it. You might find you want or need to do something else to compliment it, either with the drums or the other instruments or it might just work for a particular song or specific drum vibe. I know recording time is a luxury for most people, certainly for me now, but if you have the opportunity to experiment with different mic placement, recording or mixing techniques, I would always suggest just going for it. Even if you don't like the result, you'll probably learn something useful.