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Drum panning

You have already learned that the drums are recorded as one instrument with several microphones that record each others bleed signals. You know that the drum tracks recorded together share a common phase relation ship that you can not disturb by moving individual drum sounds out of that phase relation.

What we also have to realize is that the overheads contain all the imaging information of the drums and how they were setup. This means all the individual tracks have to be panned to match the overheads to avoid creating imaging phase issues.


Start by soloing the overheads listen to identify the location of the hihat. This is a good indication of where the rest of the drum sounds should fall. In our example, the hihat sounds left in the overheads. This should then result in panning the individual hihat to the same location and therefore all the other tracks should follow their specific locations.

The snare is the only exception. Our goal is to center the sound of the snare but the snare sounds in the overhead slightly left. To fix this, we are panning the individual snares slightly to the opposite side to compensate. You can only do this if the snare sounds only slightly off to a side,  like in our song. If the snare sounds extreme imaged to one side in the overheads, you might have to decrease the width of the overheads by tightening the panning.


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