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  • Wood and Drum Kits

    I am starting to think about buying another Akit. However, times have changed since I last bought an acoustic kit. Now there are more makes and models than ever. For instance, Tama Rockstar, Pearl Export and Yamaha Stage Custom kits are regarded very highly in comparison to other "higher-line" kits.

    What kind of woods and kits do you regard most highly? I know I will get thousands of answers to such a wide open question. However, I'm looking for detail as to why you endorse your suggestion.

    I appreciate your insight.
    WMP


    (Weapon of Mass Percussion)

  • #2
    My last set of A's was a Pearl Session Elite. I got them close to 10 yrs ago but it was a hybrid wood. It had birch/mahagany shells. I liked them alot. I did replace the steel snare that came with it with a free floating snare, maple shell. It took me a while to learn how to tune it, but I was very happy with it. Actually tuned it without choking the snares and getting no snare buzz when the toms were hit. I never was able to do that with any other snare.

    Now they have maple/mahogany and others. I assume all maple shells is not in the budget. Not all maple is created equal. You might want to really check out what your getting in terms of quality wood no matter what you end up with. You could find those hybrids no better than the cheaper models where they don't even tell you what wood is used.


    Gretsch Catalina Birch Carribean Blue A to EZ conversion w/TD-20, V-Cymbals, BBE 482, Peavey KBA/300, Electric Sticks, Gibraltar V-Rack, Westone UM2 IEM's, Sony MDR-7509 headphones,
    Kit Pic 1 Kit Pic 2 Kit Pic 3... And FOR SALE I have: 3 PD-9's, MDS-10 purple rack w/cables/pad and cym mounts. See classified posts for details or PM me.

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    • #3
      If you've played mostly maple based kits, you might want to check out something like the tama starclassic performer kits - a kit that uses birch instead of maple. I have yet to try it, but I've read reviews on it where the kick on the performer kit sounds great and the toms are very versatile.
      td-6, pro-mark, remo, sabian, dw, tama rockstar.

      Comment


      • #4
        We covered this awhile back in a little bit of detail, but I can't remember exactly where!

        Some big considerations are budget, type of music you'll be playing, and what sort of sound you like.

        Maple: Usually found in the more expensive kits. Qualities: Full range of tonality, long sustain, colorful overtones. Very loud. Good for all types of music.

        Birch: Usually found in nice "studio"-marketed kits. Sounds less brash than maple, with less midrange presence and fewer overtones. Not quite as loud, and sounds more controlled. Used extensively in recording. Best for mic'd situations, or low-volume settings.

        Mahogany: Mostly found in beginner to nice upper-midrange kits. Low fundamental emphasis, with very few high overtones. Deep and warm sounding, very forgiving of less-than-perfect tuning. Short sustain, round-bottomed sound. Good for heavy rock with the thunderous low-end, or mellow music, due to the less-cutting sound.

        Various other woods are used, from exotics like bubinga and zebrawood (wayyyyyy expensive) to cheaper mixed-content plywoods. Some drum makers advertise the mix of different woods, which can have mixed results, due to the different tonal qualities of the various woods.

        The bottom line is that you should let your ear and wallet decide together, and don't just go by what marketing people or "experts" tell you. C.Jude, a regular contributer to the list and a guy with extensive pro touring & recording background, will tell you that a relatively cheap Tama Rockstar kit can sound much better than a so-called "pro" kit costing much more money.

        Go to the drum shops around you and actually play on some of the kits & see what the differences are that you can hear. You are the one paying the money, so get what sounds good to you.

        Good luck, and enjoy the shopping process!

        -Danny
        -Danny

        Build a man a fire, and he'll be warm for a day. Set a man on fire, and he'll be warm for the rest of his life.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by fartnokker:
          C.Jude, a regular contributer to the list and a guy with extensive pro touring & recording background, will tell you that a relatively cheap Tama Rockstar kit can sound much better than a so-called "pro" kit costing much more money.

          -Danny
          What tours/recordings? I'd be interested to know.



          [This message has been edited by IndustrialDrummer (edited April 15, 2002).]
          td-6, pro-mark, remo, sabian, dw, tama rockstar.

          Comment


          • #6
            Beware: you can't give qualifications for 'wood' or 'wood types' in general.

            So you can't say
            Maple: Usually found in the more expensive kits. Qualities: Full range of tonality, long sustain, colorful overtones. Very loud. Good for all types of music.
            There are 100 types of maple, alone. The maple used for the Sonor budget series comes from Italy and is a different wood than the Hard Rock Maple from Canada in the Sonor Designer series or DrumWorkshop bla bla series. Same for birch, mahogany, oak, beech. etc. Also: Japanese wood is (can be) different than North American wood. And so on...

            One rule though: budget drum kits in general use the cheaper woods. Or they use mixtures of wood. Such drums can sound decent (especially with a pinstripe head on the toms and bass drum - not on the snare!) but they have a limited tuning range. Better wood is found (no matter what kind of wood) in the mid range/top range series. More brilliant sound, wider tuning range or special sounds (eucalyptus/bubbinga).

            More to come in my drum book, which will never be published, cause the first chapter is already 400 pages
            Nederpopband Springvloed

            Comment


            • #7
              Putt is right, class; there are many types & ranges of maple, mahogany, birch, & everything else. I was just giving a general guideline, tho, and feel it is pretty much on target.

              You can buy a budget Sonor maple kit, and a Pearl Masters Mahogany kit, but they are the exceptions rather than the norm. As a rule, Philippine or Taiwanese Mahogany is found in most bottom-end budget kits, and Canadian maple is found in most top-level kits, with many variations and exceptions out there.

              And Putt, you didn't even mention the many variations of oak, koa, bamboo, ash, plastic (a la vistalites), steel, and even cymbal bronze (seen the new Paiste/Ochletree drums?) as drum materials... you should be ashamed!

              Tongue in cheek,

              -Danny
              -Danny

              Build a man a fire, and he'll be warm for a day. Set a man on fire, and he'll be warm for the rest of his life.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by IndustrialDrummer:
                What tours/recordings? I'd be interested to know.
                He used to be the "ghost" drummer for the Beatles, way back in the 60's, and would play backstage thru the PA while Ringo appeared to play out front. They could never publicly acknowledge him, so they wrote a song in tribute...

                "Hey, Jude..."

                -Danny

                -Danny

                Build a man a fire, and he'll be warm for a day. Set a man on fire, and he'll be warm for the rest of his life.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Ah. That's cool.
                  td-6, pro-mark, remo, sabian, dw, tama rockstar.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    To sum up this topic:

                    Drum kits give me wood.



                    -Danny
                    -Danny

                    Build a man a fire, and he'll be warm for a day. Set a man on fire, and he'll be warm for the rest of his life.

                    Comment

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