The Electro-Voice N/D468 tom and N/D868 kick drum microphones have won their industry-standard reputations in the trenches by ensuring the true sound of the drum comes through, while enhancing definition and punch in all the right places. That is why Blue Man Group, whose unique and globally successful show is a performance art spectacle rooted in dynamic percussion, relies upon EV mics.
Matt Koenig, audio director/designer for Blue Man Group, is responsible for specifying sound reinforcement equipment for all the Blue Man Group productions around the world. Drums and percussion are the driving force of every show and picking the right drum mics is a top priority to ensure consistently excellent sound quality. Koenig explained how he arrived at the N/D468 and N/D868, thanks to a good old fashioned mic shootout:
“We gathered a group of mics from various manufacturers, set them up in our studio rehearsal space in New York, and had a shootout,” Koenig says. “We soon found the N/D468 and N/D868 to be the best-sounding mics for our application. They won fair and square, and were judged by people who really know drum sound, as that’s such a huge part of the show. Everyone present agreed that they were smoother and more open-sounding, with no ‘Formica’ characteristics and no major humps in the low-end. They sound more like the drum than a microphone on a drum, which is essential for us.”
“We use the N/D468 on drum kit toms and percussion toms,” Koenig adds, “and the N/D868 is used all over the place—and on the kick drum, of course. The show features a variety of large and unusual drums and the N/D868 works well on some of the larger drums where we want really big, fat, warm low-end. It has a nice attack on the kick drum, with a really satisfying tight, low-end punch. It’s designed as a kick drum mic, but it’s really versatile.”
“We’ve been using the EV mics for about a year now and they’re working out great. We have them at the New York show, in Tokyo, Germany, Orlando, and Las Vegas, as well as in our corporate and industrial rigs. Every drum mic spec since the shoot-out has been EV —they’re standard-issue now.”