Lets be honest, nobody really likes to mic up a full drum kit for recording. There’s so many mics (not to mention the price of them all), cables, and various details to get right for that perfect sounding recording, but what if there was a way to use your iPhone to record your drums? Well you’re in luck, in this blog, we’ll explore the process of live drum recording with an iPhone, showcasing the apps you’ll need, optimal placement techniques, and tips for various environments.
At Point Blank L.A., we’re passionate about empowering you with the knowledge to unleash your creativity, so before we dive into the details, don’t forget to check out our audio engineering programs that equip you with the skills to make professional recordings that truly shine! Check out the video below on how Sweatson Klank, the LA beat scene legend and PBLA instructor, shows how you can make great quality drum recordings with only an iPhone. Alright, lets get it!
1. Essential Apps for Live Drum Recording:
To transform your iPhone into a powerful drum recording tool, we recommend using apps that offer high-quality audio recording capabilities. Popular apps like GarageBand, Voice Memos, and Ferrite Recording Studio are perfect starting points, offering intuitive interfaces and advanced features to capture your drums with exceptional clarity.
2. Placing Your iPhone for Optimal Sound:
Placement is key to capturing the best sound from a live drum kit with your iPhone. To begin, try positioning your iPhone near the drum kit facing towards the drummer, roughly at ear level. This placement allows the iPhone to capture a balanced mix of all drum components. Experiment with angling the iPhone slightly towards specific areas of the kit for more focused sounds, and remember to keep a safe distance to avoid distortion or overpowering levels.
3. Recording in Different Environments:
Recording environments greatly impact the character and quality of your drum recordings. In acoustically treated rooms, your iPhone can pick up the natural ambiance beautifully. Experiment with positioning your iPhone to capture the room’s characteristics, such as placing it higher up or in a corner to enhance reverb. In less controlled environments, consider using additional acoustic panels or blankets to minimize unwanted reflections and create a more controlled recording space.
4. Room Acoustics and Mic Placement:
Different environments call for different microphone placement techniques. In a small room with lively acoustics, you’ll want to position your iPhone slightly farther away from the drum kit to capture a more balanced sound. In larger rooms or spaces with less reverberation, moving the iPhone closer to the drum kit will provide a more upfront and intimate sound. Don’t be afraid to experiment with placement and take note of how the room dynamics affect your recordings.
5. Embrace Post-Production Magic:
Once you’ve captured your drum recordings on your iPhone, it’s time to dive into the world of post-production. Utilize audio editing DAW’s like Ableton or mobile apps like GarageBand or Ferrite Recording Studio to enhance the recorded tracks, adjust levels, add EQ or compression, and fine-tune the overall mix. Explore different effects and plugins to create a professional-sounding drum recording that truly shines.
There you have it, you’re now armed with the knowledge to capture the sounds of a live drum kit using only your iPhone! By leveraging essential apps, experimenting with optimal placement techniques, and adapting to different environments, your drum recordings will come to life with astonishing clarity and character.
If you’re as passionate about music as we are, our music production programs are designed to equip you with the skills and knowledge necessary about the world of music production, composition, sound design, and mixing. Learn how to create professional recordings that stand out from the rest at Point Blank L.A., London, and Online.
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