[Tuning your drums by Waywood Music]

Tuning Drums


Although these pages are designed to help you get the best sound from your acoustic drums in a live setting, they will also allow you to provide an excellent sound source for more specialised applications such as close-miking or recording.

The following basic principles apply to tuning any drum:

[Yamaha 12-inch oak snare drum]Drums are made of materials which resonate ( vibrate). Therefore, the best sound will be achieved if this is allowed to happen.

Different types of drum head are made to produce different types of sound. However, they can only produce their sound properly if they are tight enough to resonate.

When the drum heads and drum shell resonate together (in sympathy) they will sound their best.

Tune the drums to sound their best and then 'fine tune' out any unwanted rings either by SUBTLE changes in tuning of the top or bottom head or by SUBTLE damping if necessary.

Remember that if you are not miking-up your drums, you will need resonance and extra overtones (ring) to project their sound over the other instruments.

If you are miking-up your kit, it is relatively easy for a sound engineer to get a great sound from a good sounding source (drum), but almost impossible to achieve a good sound from a poor sounding drum

It is no use spending large amounts of money on a drum kit, only to gaffa-tape everything up and make it sound like a set of cardboard boxes. Cardboard boxes are much better for this type of sound and cheaper!

Tuning is a very personal thing, and represents part of your 'drum identity' or 'trade mark'. The suggestions contained in these pages have been found to given excellent performance across a wide range of musical styles, and produced the most favourable comments from audience and sound engineers.

Choose link below to access the tuning information you require:

Snare Drum
Bass (Kick) Drum
Muffling Drums


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