Front Ensemble Miking- Need Advice!!!

Hey everyone,
Im new to the forums but Im looking for some advice for miking our front ensemble. The budget is limited like most band budgets. Ill tell you a little bit about the band first. 60-ish winds. Going competitive next year. Possible show idea is Le Tour, by Kevin Ford and Frank Sullivan. Front ensemble- 2 Marimba, 2 vibes, 1 xylo, 1 bells, 1 bass drum/gong, 1-3 accessory players. Pretty average.

Now on the what I need help with. Right now, we have a power mixer (Peavey XR 600C I believe, or something that is REALLY close to it... Im at home, cant see it for a few days), 3 Shure PG mics (Also not sure exactly what they are), no subs, 2 drum kit mics that were used because we didnt have enough mics, 2 Peavey speakers (rather small, I want to say 10-12";, I know with the shell and horn, approx. 20in).... we also have a small mixer, probably 6 channels and it isnt powered, that we havent really needed to use.

So, with all that said, Im not getting much volume and sound out of the marimbas and vibes not matter what kind of mallet I give them. Mallets only go for far. What would make the biggest impact in sound... or I guess, what would be your first purchase? I know the drum mics are terrible and the PG mics arent that great either but I figured I put the PG mics on the vibes for the time being and get 4 other mics. What are your suggestions? Budget is very limited. Thanks!
A few things:

1. I'm pretty sure those mics are designed to be very close to the sound source, like a solo vocalist or up next to an instrument
2. They require phantom power, so make sure that's on
3. You might want a dynamic mic like the SM57 which is a good all-around mic and isn't too expensive.  You can get a windscreen for it too.  It's the ";official"; mic of the US President, so he (or she!) sounds the same every time.
Well, actually the mics look like the PG57 or 58. Which are dynamic mics. But what you said about needing to be close to them, YES. Exactly our problem. I can only turn them up to a certain point before I get a lot of feedback.
Please keep the advice comin! Even if you just back up another person's statement. It helps me know the poster is legit. Thanks
Don't place them close together, or near your speakers to avoid feedback.  You will want new mics though- the PG are sort of low-end and not designed for a wide area of sound like a mallet instrument.  Many groups use 2 mics per marimba, 1 per vibes.  With a windscreen and shock mount to minimize noise, you're looking at about $150 each.  You can always make the kids do a car wash for a fundraiser :)
[quote author=robert.luster link=topic=4314.msg22528#msg22528 date=1334016424]
Please keep the advice comin! Even if you just back up another person's statement. It helps me know the poster is legit. Thanks

If Jesse Mattson says to do it, I'd be sure to do it. ;)
[quote author=erath link=topic=4314.msg22553#msg22553 date=1334458499]
If Jesse Mattson says to do it, I'd be sure to do it. ;)

I second this message...
If you are struggling to get more gain before feedback, then you either need to move your loudspeakers farther from the mics, and/or place some sort of barrier between the mics and the loudspeakers.

I use PG57 mics in my pit (2 for 2 marimbas each, 1 for vibes). They are inexpensive mics but the specs show that the frequency response isn't much different than the well-respected SM57 mics. They have gotten the job done hassle-free for years.

I've picked up 2 SM57s and 1 SM58. Haven't tried them out yet though. Please read my new topic about sound equipment, I think THATS a pretty big issue too. Thanks!
I find it really interesting to be a fly on the wall for these sorts of discussions. I don't pretend to be ";electronics savvy"; so I really learn a lot just by watching the back-and-forth and recommendations.

Another place I learned a lot recently was through a podcast with Cavalier Designer, Mike McIntosh. Here's a link to the podcast:

It's really valuable stuff! If you have time to go back and listen to the first part of the interview, it's well worth it also.
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