1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  

PLEXI-GLASS Drum Shield ?

Discussion in 'Live Sound [BG]' started by stonewall, Oct 7, 2013.

  1. stonewall


    Jun 14, 2010
    Do any of you guys have experience with Drum Shields in your bands?How much volume does the shield block 30% 50% ?I have to correct the problem constant complaints why is the drummer hitting the drums(snare) so loud every gig.
  2. exltd001


    Sep 12, 2012
    Lower the tuning on the Snare. Part of properly tuning the drums is setting the volume of the individual drums. If all the drums are too loud - it is because the drummer just hits too hard - if one of the drums is particularly loud compared to the rest of the drums, it is because it is not tuned to match the set.
  3. What kind of music do you play? Is it for a church? Alot of places like churches that are sensitive to the overall volume use shields. They can be very effective, providing the drums are miked, and there is a sound absorbing surface, like a curtain, behind the drummer.
    If its for a rock band, see the previous post..
  4. bassman314

    bassman314 I seem to be a verb, an evolutionary process...

    Mar 13, 2005
    Bay Area, CA
    Work on your drummer and their dynamics. Try using smaller sticks, or something like hod rods. It's worth the effort to make your dummer a better and more sensetive player.

    We found that drum shields made our church drummer worse. He was up against a wooden wall, so the shield just ricochetted all around him. He had to wear earplugs, and therefore couldn't hear us. In-Ears were not an option.

    Our drum shield fell apart during a strike, and we haven't taken the time to fix it. He just plays with better control and dynamics.
  5. BassCliff


    May 17, 2012
    So. Cal.

    I have no issue with the drummer being behind a shield. This is a smaller one (about 4 feet tall, the angle makes it look taller), just enough to give the FOH guy a little more control over the mix when the drummer hits hard or uses too many cymbals.


    Even with larger shields around the kit, if they are open on top and in back, the kit is normally loud enough on stage for you to hear everything. I can't give you a definite percentage but I have heard a drummer or two say that since the shield is in front of them they actually play a little softer since a lot of their sound is coming back at them.

    I wouldn't say the drums are half as loud because I get the sound coming around the side and back of the shield. Out front is where it makes a difference. I think your in the ballpark with the 30%-50% reduction volume, depending on the size and coverage of the shield.

    The kit at church is totally enclosed with plexi all around and acoustic panels on top and in back. The drummer opens a door to get into the "fish bowl". We all use IEMs and have our own Axiom mixers to dial in our own monitor mix. It's very nice.

    Thank you for your indulgence,

  6. jaywa


    May 5, 2008
    Iowa City, IA
    Really not a fan of bug screens at all. We use one in our church and it's mostly cause of just one drummer who can't keep his volume in check.

    That being said, I guess if the choice is real drums and a bug screen or electric drums, I'll live with the bug screen. Just don't ask me to move it (they are crazy heavy and you will quickly grow to loathe them if you try to take one out on the road).

    One other thing... these things can be death for your drummer's hearing. All that sound that would of gone into the atmosphere is now being reflected back at the drummer. A lot of drummers hate them for this very reason (among others). I strongly suggest that your drummer either be provided a good set of custom molded IEMs, or over the ear studio type headphones if you plan on going the bugscreen route. You might think it looks goofy for the drummer to wear studio cans but you've already kinda ruined the visual thing with the bug screen so at that point it's not that big of deal. Using a wedge monitor in that environment is the WORST thing you can do and will make the decibel level for the drummer even worse than the bug screen already makes it.

    I kinda put drum screens in the same category as capos... things I wish every musician was accomplished enough not to have to use, but that just have to be tolerated in certain situations.
  7. P Town

    P Town

    Dec 7, 2011
    Do these come in a totally enclosed, (four sides, with a top, and bottom), version with a padlock on the outside?
  8. bassman314

    bassman314 I seem to be a verb, an evolutionary process...

    Mar 13, 2005
    Bay Area, CA

    The sure do!
  9. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    Hate 'em, hate 'em, hate 'em. I do not want drums in my monitor. I want to hear them from the drums. I've used them twice in my life, and will never use them again. I couldn't hear the drums at all, nor could I communicate with the drummer when needed. If a soundman can't get a good onstage sound without them, then I'd be looking at a new soundman.
  10. but by the same token -
    If the drummer cannot get his intensity into check for the room......
    might be looking at the wrong culprit.....
    I'm just sayin.....
  11. jaywa


    May 5, 2008
    Iowa City, IA
    This is a great point. I don't sing. Ergo, I don't have a mic. Ergo, if the drummer is in a box with cans on, I have no way to talk to him. That can be a big problem, at least for me.
  12. Charley Umbria

    Charley Umbria I'm Really a Drummer Supporting Member

    Jan 28, 2011
    Rock City, TN
    This. There's no excuse for a drummer not to play appropriately for the venue. None.

    Turn the situation around. If you had a guitarist who consistently blasted everyone off of small stages with a Marshall stack, would the solution be to put the amp in a box?

    It's entirely possibly to play with intensity at moderate volumes. There are enough good drummers out there that bands, churches, or artists shouldn't have to put up with unprofessional fools. OTOH, you often get what you pay for...
  13. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    If that's the case, we look for a new drummer. Certainly is not the case in my regular band that got stuck with the shields.
  14. jaywa


    May 5, 2008
    Iowa City, IA
    Actually I know of several churches who do this exact thing with their guitar amps.

    Totally agree with your premise, though. Drum shields address the outcome of the problem... not the problem itself.
  15. The drummer can also look at getting a quieter snare, or one with wood rims. One drummer I know places a practice pad on top of the snare skin to dampen the volume when it is needed. Works fine, was less quiet and the tone was good. Also, hot rods work, but mostly the drummer has to develop the skill to play quietly. For quiet playing, gravity can bring the stick down to the skin to drive the snare volume, all he has to do is control the height of the fall. He does not have to use ANY muscle force to 'hit the skin'.

    Plexi-glass shields? :spit:

    BTW should not your OP read , "The drummer has to correct the problem, of constant complaints about why he is hitting the drums(snare) so loud every gig."?
  16. stonewall


    Jun 14, 2010
    I guess i need to talk to our drummer he uses earplugs so i think whats happening is he is hearing a nice fat warm snare when in fact we are hearing a loud snappy bright snare.I can tell by his monitors volume settings he does not hear what we hear.All other things equal 4 of us have 1 oclock he has a 4 oclock volume setting.
  17. It is a tough thing. As a drummer, I can tell you it can be hard to eliminate part of your dynamic range, especially if you are playing rock. But yes, the comfort of the crowd is important. So if it is necessary, I prefer a screen over kitten hitting or using rutes or brushes - when it is not appropriate. It's a compromise for sure, but it can help.
  18. SteveC

    SteveC Moderator Staff Member

    Nov 12, 2004
    Eastern North Dakota
    Ive been in a band with a drum shield in the past. It helped with bleed a little as we had a lot of mics on stage - big band. Loud band. It was a pain. Of course it's best if the drummer can play with dynamics, Hot Rods, something.

    These days we're all IEM (it's at church so we don't need to feel it to rock out and move our pants legs with SPL) and the drummer uses an electronic kit. I'm sure the purists hate it, but for us it's great. Yeah, he wouldn't mind using a real kit but he sounds darn good on the electronic one and when we add on remodel I believe that a new and improved kit is in the budget.
  19. You're exactly right! Don't blame the sound guy because the drummer is beating his drums like they stole something from him.

    Also, if you use a drum shield it's best to have a sound absorption panel behind the kit so the sound doesn't just reflect back into the room.
  20. two fingers

    two fingers Opinionated blowhard. But not mad about it. Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
    They do their job OK, but they are no fun for bass players in my view.

    Wouldn't it just be easier to get the drummer to back off a bit? Is he a jerk or something?

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.