Mallet Choice When Amplified

Hello All,

I am being lazy. We recently made the chance from unplugged to PLUGGED-IN with our Front Ensemble. I should have anticipated that I quickly found out that mallets we had traditionally used suddenly achieved a ";thud"; sound due to the residual vibration of the weight of the mallet/shaft transferring through the frame. Switching to a lighter mallet has made for a better quality of sound.

Who out there has favorites for which brand/model of mallets you use on marimba/vibe/xylophone that are mic'd? On Vibe and Marimba we have a low, mid, and upper range mic.

I appreciate any input.

Not a direct answer to the question asked, but shock mounts on mallet instruments can help with this frame noise. So can high-pass filters on mixer inputs. I hang microphones from the resonators on large rubber bands and make sure no part of the mic is touching any part of the frame.

We have shock mounts, though it does not completely do the trick. Your approach of hanging mics from the resonators is interesting.


Which shockmounts are you using? There are some advertised as ";shockmounts"; and I'd hardly call them that.
Since I started using the cheap and effective method of suspending the mics by using a combination of rubber bungies attached to rubber pluming ";O-rings";, I haven had a thump, thud or creek out of the mallet instruments.

I'd also recommend replacing out your tension springs with a bit of regularity. These often get neglected during our season routine, I generally replace at least one every month.
This will ensure that there is enough tension on the string suspending the bars. Loose string=equals a less than adequate fundimental pitch, less projection as well as the possibility of superfluous frame noise.
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