Mixing kick drum and bass

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by Monkey, Aug 14, 2003.

  1. Monkey

    Monkey Supporting Member

    Mar 8, 2000
    Dayton, Ohio, USA
    I'm curious as to how you guys mix the kick drum and the bass. Our drummer is our soundman as well, and is very talented at both, but he loves a huge kick drum sound. He also mixes the bass very low and deep, which I love, but it gets mushy with the bass and kick in the same sonic space.

    At last night's gig, I suggested that he use the 100Hz cutoff button on the mixer for the bass, and let his kick take the low bottom. We switched for the reggae tunes, with my bass taking the bottom and his kick cut off at 100Hz. I think it cleaned up the bottom end.

    What do you guys do?
  2. Everything at 10 and rock out!
  3. Morkolo


    Aug 11, 2003
    very good idea, at the last show i was to the drums and bass were really tight. And they both shared the low end as you did. being a bass player myself i was watching what their bass player was doing, and you could barely tell the difference between the bass and the double kick... this made it very confusing for me. and made me wonder how good the bass player actually was. all i know is that he was sticking to the double kick. just that everything got muddy down there in the low end :p
  4. Petebass


    Dec 22, 2002
    QLD Australia
    As a sometimes sound guy, I try to have the bass sitting higher than the kick, provided the PA is up to it. I like to get the kick thumping at 60 to 100Hz, then let the bass guitar roll in. I don't use H/P filters though.

    Having the kick and bass guitar in the same frequency range is plain old bad mixing. And while some people like the sound of a bass guitar at 30Hz, I think it takes away from the bass playing. He could be playing a semi-tone out and you'd barely be able to tell.

    But remember that mixing is as much an art as Playing an instrument. Everyone has their own style. I tend to latch on to sound engineers that I like and use them exclusively if possible.
  5. PollyBass

    PollyBass ******

    Jun 25, 2001
    Shreveport, LA
    I do what you do, have done it for along time.

    I have NOTHING on my eq at 40. It's flat at that Freq if anything. then a huge bump in the 100 range.

    That way I stay out of the kick drum, and it is not as muddy.

    I like the kick drum to be pronouced, wereas it cannot be if I am pludding along as low and deap as it is.

    It has no effect that way.
  6. I try to find out what the fundamental of the Bass Drum is tuned to and do a heavy but narrow banded scoop in my sound with a parametric eq sometimes i also slightly scoop the second harmonic
  7. I've had good luck in having the kick drum eq'd like this. Boost 40 to 60 , cut 100 - 1000 boost 2000 and cut the rest. That gives it a deep punch and definition but leaves a space for the bass guitar. Most of the time the bass guitar will get buried if it operates much below 100 through most PA systems.
  8. redneck2wild


    Nov 27, 2002
    Memphis, TN
    I use a channel of a compressor just for the Kick drum with the bass signal fed into a sidechain. The Kick drum in isolation has no compression but when a bass note is played, the Kick drum will be compressed slightly with a small amont of sustain. I think the term for this is called ducking. The Kick drum is still louder than the Bass in the mix with compression on, just not as loud as in isolation.

    I have done just the opposite recording. The bass signal is ran through a compressor with a sidechain signal from the Kick drum. When the Kick drum hits, the bass signal is compressed.
  9. Monkey

    Monkey Supporting Member

    Mar 8, 2000
    Dayton, Ohio, USA
    Thanks for the great ideas, oh Sages of the Sonic Abyss....

    Redneck2Wild, that ducking concept is intriguing. I never would have thought of that.

    I think it would be best to drop everything below 100hz in the PA. My Aggie DS-112s really thump onstage, and have a ton of bottom end, so my pantlegs still flap:bassist:

    Thanks again. Much respect!!