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Re: Miking Congas

Title: Re: Miking Congas
Hey, all:
I sold off my Handsonic a few months ago 'cause it was too much $$$ to sit doin' nothing until I needed congas or bongos.
But, I still like to use congas, et al every so often and popped for a Toca pair. I tried miking them with something from my equipment archives-an EV N/DYN. 257, I think.
The results were okay but the drums seemed muffled. Not sharp like when using the Roland Handsonic. What would be a reasonable-priced microphone to use with the Tocas?
Regards, Paul


I use the Shure SM57 with great results for this purpose.  I mic the top(s), not the bottom(s) to get a more "percussive" sound that cuts through the mix nicely.  The number of mics I use on congas (1 or 2) depends on what else is being mic'd.  For example, with cymbals, etc., I put a stereo pair of condenser mic's (Shure BG4.1) overhead for the whole thing, and one SM57 pointed at an angle to the midpoint between the two congas or bongos, about 8" away.  If it's just the congas, I place one SM57 over each conga at an angle, about 6" away.  If it's just the bongos, I use one SM57 pointed over the middle, between the two heads.  The latter works fine with a pair of congas, too, if you only have one mic and you pull it back a bit, say 18" away.  Try to minimize compression.  Don't be afraid to use a tad bit of reverb at a small room setting.

Hope this helps.


Michael S. Yoder, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Geography and Urban Studies
Texas A&M International University
Department of Social Sciences
5201 University Blvd.
Laredo, TX  78041
(956) 326-2634   FAX (956) 326-2459