If the kick drum sounds bad, the foundation of the song will lose its footing. If your drums are sounding thin or lack punch then this tutorial will help you. To see the Mute Button Method in action, watch the video below: If you’re mixing in a typical home studio, the acoustics in your room probably aren’t great. To do this, listen to the kick and bass and ask yourself, which of these tracks is sitting over (above) the other? Rule #1 – Don’t fix what is not broken. One of the best ways to solve this problem is to use the “over, under” technique. This approach will also help eliminate competition between the kick and bass, so you can hear both clearly. But if you’re working with a slow ballad with lots of space between the hits, you can usually add a lot more low end without things sounding muddy. You can think of these sections as two separate areas of the low end. You can use a process called the “Mute Button Method” to determine which tracks in your mix are competing with your kick. You could EQ the kick in solo, but when you put it back in context with the mix, you may realize you made the wrong decisions. It’s not easy to EQ a kick drum. MXL V67G Review: A Must-Read Before Buying. But before we dive in, make sure you grab my free EQ Cheatsheet below. The other section is from 100 Hz to around 250 Hz — we’ll call this the upper bass. It’s packed with more tips and tricks that will help you use EQ to craft mixes that sound clearer and more professional today. This area is often the source of muddiness. https://talkinmusic.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to www.amazon.com, www.amazon.ca, www.amazon.co.uk., and any others that may be affiliated with the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program. This approach can easily create more clarity and impact on the kick in your mix. This is the key to getting a full, balanced, and punchy kick drum sound in your mixes! Flipping the polarity on a track or nudging a waveform can fix all sorts of problems you might spend hours trying to solve with EQ. The kick drum sound, along with the snare, will be the defining factors of your drum sound. If the kick lacks low end, look for the dominant sub resonance in the 45hz-100hz region. If your kick drum is lacking low-end then create a low shelving boost around 80Hz – 100Hz. And if you can hear the kick more clearly, you’ll make better kick drum EQ decisions. Does the kick naturally feel like it has a deeper, more room-shaking tone than the bass? If you’re mixing an uptempo song, keep the low end on the kick a bit leaner. If you don’t take these frequencies into account when you EQ, your kick will never feel present in the mix. Imagine dividing the low end into two sections. One section is from 100 Hz down — we’ll call this the “sub”. When setting up the kick drum EQ, the main thing to consider is the relationship between the kick drum and the bass. If so, the bass is probably sitting over the kick. This technique will work well for processing a full drum kit, drum loop, drum bus or group channel. For example, you might add a high-pass filter to the bass to scoot it up the frequency spectrum, so that it sits more firmly over the kick. To learn how to do this, check out the video below: You should now be able to EQ any kick drum with more confidence. When you’re aggressively EQing a kick that was recorded as part of a live drum kit, you have to be careful. We have selected this kick drum sound since it has a lot of low ends, kind of a room reverb layer underneath it, as well as some resonant peaks which need processing. If these challenges sound familiar, you’re not alone. Use EQ to fatten/tighten up the kick It is rare to not have to use EQ to shape your kick, unless you’ve written your song around the kick drum. But often times, when a kick sounds muddy, the problem isn’t the kick — it’s other tracks that are getting in the way. But just make sure the whole music is playing when you equalize your kick drum or any other sound. With EQ. The top end of the kick is where the “beater” or “click” of the kick resides. EQ the Kick Drum . As an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases. The best solution for this is prevention. If you’re working with drum samples, take the time to listen to a few dozen before you settle on one. And if you can’t hear what your kick drum really sounds like, it’s hard to choose the right kick drum EQ settings. Often times, the best choice is to EQ your kick drum on headphones. For our new music production lesson, I’m going to show you a really neat drum bus eq technique that will help you get full, warm and punchy drums. When you’re having trouble getting the kick to cut through your mix, start by adding top end instead of low end. All kick drum sounds may be different but you can use the frequency guidelines I’m about to share with you to help you get started and understand where to boost or cut. In fact, this can be one of the hardest parts of the mixing process. When the kick and bass are competing, you can use EQ to put the kick in one section, and the bass in the other. Today I have a kick drum eq tutorial that will help you create a phat and punchy kick drum sound using an equalizer. In short, the faster the tempo is, the less low end you usually want in your kick. You’ll need a phat kick for the song to have great energy and punch. If you’re having trouble EQing a live acoustic kick drum, find a drum sample to augment or replace it before reaching for more EQ. In fact, the most important part of the kick isn’t the low end, but the top end. If needed then you might have to cut your bass around this frequency to avoid masking.eval(ez_write_tag([[250,250],'talkinmusic_com-medrectangle-4','ezslot_2',108,'0','0'])); If ever your kick drum is boomy then you’ll need to remove the mud around 250Hz to around 800Hz. A mix is not a collection of isolated tracks. And the whole thing sounds like a mushy, muddy mess. Most of the times I find that people just push the levels of other sounds too high and that tends to over power the kick drum. If it’s a live drum kit then you should also listen to the mics pick-up and things such as the overheads. In many songs, you can even replace the original kick completely without the performance sounding artificial or unnatural. And the acoustics in most home studios make it challenging to figure out what the right kick drum EQ decisions even are. Instead, get things right at the source. To learn how to find and fix phase problems on your kick drum, watch the video below. This will help minimize the bleed. This makes it difficult to hear your kick drum clearly.