Recording Tips - Miking Techniques

Microphone Selection and Placement


Standard techniques for miking snare drums, guitars and vocals are well-documented, but sometimes unusual situations can trip you up in the studio.

Here are a couple of tricks:

  • If the drum set you're miking has six or more toms, individually miking each tom may not produce the clearest sound (due to phasing). Instead, place a condenser microphone between each pair of toms, and select the figure-8 pattern on the mike. A good model for this is the AKG414.
  • When miking trumpets, use a dynamic (moving coil) microphone (like a model SM57, RE20 or 421) positioned 45 degrees off axis and about one foot away. This will produce a sound that will mix better with the rest of the instruments.


John Sundberg
Owner, FTM Studios
Denver, CO