d:fine™ 88 Directional Headset Microphone delivers robust, clear, concise vocals
Daniel Adair has always had a passion for music. As the drummer and backup vocalist for the mega-successful rock band Nickelback, Adair has had the privilege of showcasing his remarkable talents to fans all over the world. Being a singing drummer can be challenging, and delivering pristine vocals that aren’t drowned out by his drumming is extremely important to Adair. In order to achieve a superior level of audio quality and make that connection with his fans, he has come to rely on DPA Microphones d:fine™ 88 Directional Headset Microphone.

For the last fifteen years Adair has been singing backup vocals, and over the past couple of years has been experiencing pain in his hips and lower back, translating into a noticeable decline in his drumming skills. After seeing a physiotherapist, he discovered the loss in technique was just incorrect positioning of his body. The results were amazing when he focused on proper alignment, posture and core strength. After this breakthrough, the thought of going back to a world tour and twisting his back up in order to sing two hours a night was horrifying. For Adair, all roads were leading to a headset mic

“I wasn’t too thrilled at the thought of using a headset mic,” says Adair. “Back when I was coming up in Vancouver and playing all the local pubs I used another manufacturers headset mic. It was clunky, moved all over the place and caused a lot of feedback. I contacted our management and got them to ask engineers in the field what they felt the best mic was for a drummer. The answer from many was DPA’s d:fine™ 88.”
Within minutes of playing his first rehearsals with the d:fine™ 88, the results were nothing short of spectacular. “I was amazed, as was my drum tech and front of house engineer,” adds Adair. “The quality of my vocals went from thin and transparent to robust, clear and concise. Plus, the inconsistencies caused by my head trying to reach the boom mic on time while drumming were gone. The d:fine™ 88 is so small and lightweight that you don’t even know it’s there. I can swing my head around and it doesn’t move, doesn’t change a thing. After my first experience with it, I was blown away and have been using it permanently ever since.” 
One of the biggest problems Adair faced prior to using the d:fine™ 88 was excessive cymbal bleed. “The hi-hats in particular would just take over everything,” says Adair. I can’t believe how tight and accurate the d:fine™ 88 is. I do hear the drums through the vocal mic of course, but it’s complementary now as opposed to a problem to contend with. I can hear my vocals loud and clear, and the mic almost seems like a bit of an overhead mic for the drums. I’m getting a nice clear background mix of my kit through it. Even in songs I don’t sing in, I want the mic on because everything sounds better.”

After hearing the d:fine™ 88 in action, Adair’s sound engineer became a believer as well. “I know our engineer loves the d:fine™ 88 and was floored at the difference in sound quality,” adds Adair. “It’s unheard of because it’s studio-quality sound while there are cymbals and drums being smashed a foot away in every direction. It’s just totally contained and manageable. The d:fine™ 88 will be the only mic I use from now on as a singing drummer in every project unless DPA comes out with a better one, and then it will be that one!”


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