Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

need some help building an electric kit that won't cost me my savings

Collapse
X
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • need some help building an electric kit that won't cost me my savings

    Greetings everyone. I am new to this forum, but not in any way new to drumming. There is quite the paradox I'm battling and this may be a long post but I want to be as detailed as I can to seek out the most relevant advice so that folks can understand exactly what I'm looking for and expect.

    I have been a drummer since I was a small kid, starting out on cheap kits, eventually working my way up to a CB 5 pc red kit, then to a used DW kit then finally to a Mapex Pro M green kit with some great cymbals I eventually sold. I am a drummer and a guitar player secondarily.

    Life has obstacles and that was 10 years ago that i sold that Mapex set, I've moved across country, survive on social security income around $750 a month do to a disability (I am blind if you're wondering) and that's another rant for another day. Last year I maxed out a credit card and got an Alesis DM10 studio mesh kit and started recording and such, and it was great. My roommate at the time who has some very serious problems threatened me and thus had to sell the kit quick for about half of what I paid for it $900 new at the time to be able to have deposit to move out or else I would have been on the streets. Now, coming up on Christmas/new years 2017-18 I am looking to get myself another electronic drum kit to be able to continue recording; and here is where the frustration begins.

    While the Alesis dm10 kit worked for me, here is my problem. Those Alesis kits are not known for their quality. In other words, the cymbals are basically junk. Something you might think you'd find on a $500 drum kit. Since I've already explained that coming across $1000 that I can use on something that I can be productive with, like write albums and not have the thing fall apart on me, I want my money's worth.

    Enter the folks shouting "ROLAND ROLAND ROLAND!" because they are the best in the industry. Physically, the construction might be good, but you sacrafice functionality because of the name which to me means nothing, and functionality, I.E. toms are not dual zone, toy sized rubber pads and cymbals that aren't multizoned/aren't able to be choked, and you really can't expand them much.

    Before I continue and go on a rant fest, let me outline what I expect on an electronic kit. I expect the following:

    * Decent sized pads, at least 10 inches on rack toms, 12 or larger on floor toms
    * must be mesh, not only for noise, but for performance and response
    * multizone pads. You wouldn't buy an acoustic kit with rimless toms, now would you? No, because there is no such thing. That's a basic feature in my view.
    * Multizone cymbals especially for the ride. I'm not fooled by Yamaha's prechoke either. 3 zone ride, and at the very least 2 zone crashes. No one really chokes a ride so that's kind of silly.
    * An interface/module that doesn't cost 3X what the whole kit costs. I'm also not fooled by this. Modules should take midi signals and output them to be controled by software. When I think of a module, the only reason you'd need one is to configure core functionality like sensitivity, threshold, cross talk, retriggering, things like that. I could care less about the built in sounds, and some youtube drum reviewers and comparers factor sample sounds in as a giant selling point which to me is the least important of the drum kit. If you are remotely serious about performing live then you probably use superior drummer, so let's just be real. I'm buying the kit for the pads and response/material, not because of the sounds in the module or the beginner learning play along songs that are included. I can't justify buying a drum module that is not even close to being a computer but that costs 4 5 6 7 times more than the cheapest of economy laptops that can run circles around a drum module. I also expect expandability I.E. additional quarter inch inputs for another tom, or a few more cymbals.

    These factors are what are important to me. But, you can't just get what you need with any one kit, so they force you to buy the entire package, or piece together a kit of your own not knowing if the components you buy will even work together, very frustrating.

    I'd like the quality of a roland kit, while having the mesh of an alesis kit, but the cymbals of say a Yamaha dtx502k or better. I recently came across Laurin drums from Canada but haven't found much info on them so I have no clue if its a company trying to push quality third party pads or if they are a joke. I tried pricing out a kit adding one pad at a time to the cart and I was only able to get a kick pad, snare and 3 toms in my cart and I was already at $900. At that point it wasn't even worth looking at cymbals, and that is before a $500+ drum module. Seriously, I don't believe someone who is a talented drummer needs to take out a small loan to get something playable at a decent price. You can thank Roland for setting that bar so high that it allows even Alesis with their new strike kit at nearly $2 grand and their strike pro kit at $2300 and the strike kit only comes with 1 cymbal. I'm talking about the strike, not strike pro, and they are only single zone. When i say 1 cymbal I'm talking about 1 crash that does not include high hats or Ride. What is a drum set without hats or a ride, so those 2 are a given. Ebay is a joke, Amazon has far lower prices by comparison. You've got people pushing Yamaha used dtx532k bundles for around $1300 and the set only costs $1000, supposedly. Then right next to that price they try and make you think you're getting a bargain by adding the "retail" price of $3800. I'm serious when I say these people are smoking something. You're going to tell me a roland td50kv is on sale for 8 grand and then tell me the retail price is something like $15 grand? And I'm supposed to believe that's a deal?

    I'm really at the end of my rope and I need some help. My budget is $1000 absolutely max and then I'm flat broke but this is a christmas gift to myself. All I want is a sturdy chrome rack, 2 floor toms either 12 or 14 inches, and a single rack tom, 10 inches, a 12 inch snare, all pads dual zone/mesh, a 3 zone ride, a crash or 2 to get started, and a nice high hat setup. Not fancy, just not trash either. If I'm going to use this thing with superior drummer or some vst, I don't need the crap sounds that come on a module because that is not how I judge electronic drums. At least the thing I liked about the strike module is that I could actually load superior drummer samples on it and have dynamic articulations every time the pad is struck. Don't confuse that with what Alesis called dynamic articulation on it's dm10 kits which only applied to velocity sensitive hits. Make no mistake hitting the snare at full volume still resulted in a shot gun sound so that was a gimmick in my opinion. Now, I see the dm10 studio kit for $966, way more than I bought the mesh kit for and that's not even the dm10 X kit. The dm10 is what, 6 7 years old now and people are still getting top dollar for something everyone else that plays them says negative things about? Besides that I've had terrible experience with Ebay in every form so I generally go to Amazon.

    So I need help cutting threw the garbage and discuss features and functions that will not break my bank but that are made well and do what I need. Quality mesh pads no smaller than 10 inches, cymbals that are at least 2 zones, 3 zone on ride, quality rack, expandability, a module that isn't the price of a used car, nice real high hat controller I'm thinking alesis pro x controller or one from yamaha, I'm basically staying far away from Roland. For their prices I don't even care what they're offering and I've given thought to the td11k/kv but I can't do that to myself in good conscience. What do folks think about Laurin Drums, are they a scam or for real? How about a company like DDrums and their 6 piece birch kit with triggers? I gave thought to getting a hybrid kit and getting some good triggers but how would I deal with the module and cymbals, I'm thinking a basic I/O, but one that handles sensitivity/threshold/stuff like that well. Since I do production as well it isn't too big of a deal to have a laptop near by next to the module or something.

    I WAS going to get the $1000 yamaha DTX532K then sell off the 7.5 inch tp70 toms and replace them with Laurin pads until I saw the yamaha pads only go for like $40 a piece. $30 pads on a $1000 drum set? What? So that plan was flushed down the toilet.

    I know these prices of drum kits are way inflated for some strange reason because you can get keyboard controllers for dirt cheap or synthesizers for a few hundred bucks.

    I'll just add my X-roommate had a roland rubber pad he used as a high hat. I certainly wouldn't pay anymore than $400 for a kit with those rubber pads, that's for damn sure.

    Let me explain one thing that may help you understand why I have these requirements. Electronic drums are obviously not real drums. If you use rimshots, or the ride bell or mute cymbals or want a high hat with a gradient of sounds from open and closed and you have a cheap kit that doesn't have those basic features, then that automatically means thats more time you have to sit in front of a midi editor to add those details into a drum track and that is painful and seriously can ruin any music making session. Make no mistake, if you don't take the time to set up your kit with correct sensitivity and threshold settings, you may end up doing this anyway which is why it is important to have a kit that handles dynamic velocity response very well. That is definitely not asking for the sun moon and stars, that's just being real, and that is primarily the module's duty more so than the physical pads. Mesh just helps you access those nuances

    My hope is that someone has been in my shoes with this situation before and I'm curious to hear how you resolved this issue. If you went with roland, why and what made you go that rout? I'm sure Christmas sales will be coming up soon so perhaps something will be on sale, although black friday had 0 drum set sales no matter which website I looked on. And yes, I'm sure folks might say, you need to go to a music shop and try out different sets. First, that is pointless because I'll sit down at a set that plays well and then be told the price tag of 3 grand and then just walk away. I'm simply trying to cut out those options. But secondly, as I said, I am disabled and don't drive. Traveling any distance outside my little town seriously cuts into what I've got left over each month from my checks so that's not an option. Until such time as real employment is a thing I am forced to live with my face berried in books and papers working toward a degree no one can tell me will even be useful, so I need to use my time while I'm alive to do something that makes me happy and possibly make me money. Look at steevy Wonder and Ray charles. Normally I hate even bringing those 2 guys up but it is what everyone thinks of when someone says "blind musician" so hey, if it plays on peoples' emotions and it makes me money, why not. I also dabble with audio production/mixing, it's just that the drums are a giant pain in the ass.

    I appreciate any input.

  • gingerbaker
    replied
    Originally posted by BWaj View Post

    Completely agree!.... My racks toms are 8 and 10 and perfect, imo.
    You're kinda weird the same way I am, then. ;>D

    Leave a comment:


  • BWaj
    replied
    Originally posted by gingerbaker View Post
    "* Decent sized pads, at least 10 inches on rack toms, 12 or larger on floor toms"

    Acoustic drums are large because they have to be big to make lower-pitched tones. This is not the case for e-drums, and for me that is a beautiful thing. I love the fact that one can have all the sounds of a huge, expensive acoustic kit but with a footprint a fraction of the size.
    Completely agree! I made by Kick out of a 14" tom shell for this purpose. Still looks great on stage but is very light and does nor take half the van to move. They only pad I like close to original size is the snare. I built mine as a 12" but now have the Roland digi snare. 14" is ridiculously large, imo. My leg kind rubs it where a 12 is just as playable and fits better in my set up. My racks toms are 8 and 10 and perfect, imo.

    Leave a comment:


  • BWaj
    replied
    Originally posted by silot View Post
    You need to wait for the new upgraded e drum kits from the major players roland/yamaha or buy a cheap acoustic kit and rent a small place to practice and forget about e drums. This is the worst period to invest to a new medium price e drum kit. I have the same problem and i decided to wait.

    Used e drum kits that are priced fairly are a nightmare to find and that is if you live in a the US/UK/DE if you live in a small country you have 0 chance to find something worth the money. An example is people selling dtexpress3 kits and roland td-9 kits that are heavily used at 900-1000 euro.

    DIY is fairly expensive if you want a complete e drum kit that is better than the ready made equivalent please find me an example of a DIY 1k drum kit that is better than the roland TD-11KV / Yamaha DTX-532k kits
    Well this is a very negative post, lol. There are lots of great DYI kits out there, including mine. It's not rocket science for anything other than the snare. And a cheap acoustic kit does not sound great either. Perhaps you live in an area that makes edrums crazy expensive. I can find used stuff easily and fairly cheap in the US. In addition to the usual online sources, there are local classified adds in our online newspapers, facebook has lots of used gear groups and simply talking to other musicians and getting the word out helps a lot.

    I'm getting ready to put my TD9 module and some older pads up for sale as an example. I obviously want to get as much as possible for them. But it's a fraction the cost of a new set. I built my toms for about 85 bucks each with all new parts. They trigger just as well as Roland and have held up for 4 years now. I hit hard and travel with them a lot, they don't just sit at home.

    Leave a comment:


  • gingerbaker
    replied
    "* Decent sized pads, at least 10 inches on rack toms, 12 or larger on floor toms"

    Of course, you should get what you want.

    But, after playing an e-kit for way longer then I played acoustic, I now want the smallest possible drum sizes. I have a TD-10 kit, so I do have 10" and 12" toms, but I have played around with the newer mesh e-kits with smaller toms. I got used to it pretty fast. I like the smaller kit better.

    Acoustic drums are large because they have to be big to make lower-pitched tones. This is not the case for e-drums, and for me that is a beautiful thing. I love the fact that one can have all the sounds of a huge, expensive acoustic kit but with a footprint a fraction of the size.The space and weight reduction is a wonderful thing if you play out and have to contend with teeny stages and a smaller-than-ideal car. It is important to have the drums in a 3-d space you are used to so your arm movements are the same, but it's also really nice not to have to twist around as much to get to the lower toms.

    Years ago, I used to wax poetic here about what I thought would be a cool goal - developing an e-kit that not only would be enjoyable to play and durable, but would also fold/telescope down into the size of a suitcase or a large artist's portfolio. Carry it with one hand. George Jetson's e-kit. But, I am kinda weird that way. I am also of the minority of drummers who doesn't care that my e-kit doesn't look like like an acoustic kit.

    In any case, good luck with your e-kit dreams!
    Last edited by gingerbaker; 06-04-18, 12:24 PM.

    Leave a comment:


  • paulus17
    replied
    I have a Yamaha stage custom and have had it converted to electric by Diamond Drums in Stoke. Running a Roland TD12 module and VH12 hi hats and CY15 Cymbals.
    did not cost me and arm and a leg to be honest. Kept all my original drums which is nice because I do think electric kits look terrible.
    The only down side I can tell for me on a personal point is the cymbals are rubbish and the TD12 sounds rubbish. I do not understand the fascination with Roland as I think they are over priced and poor.
    To be honest I am going to quit drumming if I have to carry on using electric, only went to it due to moving house and wanting to be considerate. Can not afford to sound proof a room. Hmmm

    Leave a comment:


  • tivi
    replied
    you should check guitar center used gears:

    for example, this yamaha dtx502 kit, very good price


    http://www.guitarcenter.com/Used/Yam...ic-Drum-Set.gc



    Leave a comment:


  • silot
    replied
    You need to wait for the new upgraded e drum kits from the major players roland/yamaha or buy a cheap acoustic kit and rent a small place to practice and forget about e drums. This is the worst period to invest to a new medium price e drum kit. I have the same problem and i decided to wait.

    Used e drum kits that are priced fairly are a nightmare to find and that is if you live in a the US/UK/DE if you live in a small country you have 0 chance to find something worth the money. An example is people selling dtexpress3 kits and roland td-9 kits that are heavily used at 900-1000 euro.

    DIY is fairly expensive if you want a complete e drum kit that is better than the ready made equivalent please find me an example of a DIY 1k drum kit that is better than the roland TD-11KV / Yamaha DTX-532k kits

    Leave a comment:


  • Kenster
    replied
    Welcome!! I agree with others, Roland DOES have 12 inch pads and almost all their cymbals have choke and are two zone. TO summarize everything:

    1. Get used...Craigslist, local pawnshops, eBay, etc. Deals abound!

    2. DIY...cheap shell pack and some tips on rubber edging on rims and mesh heads from other companies OTHER than Roland to keep costs down. DIY triggers or buy some from various vendors, also not expensive.

    3. If getting new, things like Yamaha cymbals instead of Roland, same quality and playability, dual zone, much cheaper. Lots of other examples abound.

    Good luck and keep us posted on your progress!

    K

    Leave a comment:


  • Microjedi
    replied
    Just to echo everybody else...used is absolutely the way to go. Check craigslist, the forums, eBay, and any other place you can think of. I reached a point where I had 3 kits that I was trying to choose from. I ended up with a Roland TD-10 set with snare, and 3 toms (all mesh heads), 3 cymbals (multi zone/chokeable). and VH-11 hi-hat for under $750. Patience is key. Good luck.

    Leave a comment:


  • 'lectric drumma
    replied
    First of all, welcome to the forum! Quite some history...

    As far as Roland lacking in functionality, i.e. toms not dual zone, toy sized rubber pads an non-multizone/chokeable cymbals, I don't know where you got that, who told you that, but toms are dual zone, they do have a lot of mesh head pads, and the cymbals are chokeable. If you want to go cheap, I 'd suggest having someone who can make a DIY-kit for you, shouldn't be so hard - there is lots of info and a lot of knowledgeable people on this forum, and youtube, and can be cheap. Cheap, that means, you can have a brand new a-kit for 198 Ä, including 10", 12" toms, 16" floortom, 14" snaredrum, 22" base drum, double braced straight cymbal stand, hi-hat stand, snare stand, drum stool and foot pedal here https://www.thomann.de/be/startone_s...tandard_bk.htm, or for 239 Ä here https://www.thomann.de/be/millenium_mx222.htm, the second kit being the same sizes, but also including 14" hi-hat and 16" crash/ride. Soundwise? Who cares, they are to be converted in e-drums.

    Good luck whatever you may end up with!


    Stijn

    Leave a comment:


  • Macarina
    replied
    I didnít read through your whole post. Iím sure it was detailed in your needs.

    From my take of what you want... patience. If you are absolutely strapped financially, patience will your friend. As will Ebay, Guitar Center and maybe Reverb.
    Research like a mofo.
    I doubt you will get anything new.
    So start thinking used.
    If you know not one set meets your end criteria, start listing what you want. Maybe you can find a used kit with most of you needs and add accordingly.
    Start gathering average used prices on the items you want.

    Consider A2E. A cheap shell pack.
    Order some triggers, which a ton of folks have tried out and reported about here.
    Used racks or stands
    I have only experienced Roland Modules. I like them. Look at the TD-9. Add VExpressions and it sounds phenomenal.
    headphones, which folk can recommend decent priced ones.

    Leave a comment:


  • basschick
    replied
    i just finished putting together a kit, and thanks to craigslist, ebay and sales, i got some very good deals. if you can go used, a little patience can find you some good stuff. for example, i paid $90 total for 3 pintech dual zone concertcast 10" pads and $50 for a yamaha PCY100, and $99 for a compact roland rack with 5 L rods with clamps plus cymbal arms and clamps. i went with a yamaha DTX502 module - they run $269 new and i like mine a lot but be aware that yamaha and roland-style hi hats and hi hat controllers are not easily cross compatible. if you want roland, you can get an older roland TD-9 for literally a few dollars more than the new DTX502 with a little patience that will let you use vex kits and a roland hi hat.

    i'm not aware of a new drum kit in your price range with dual zone 10" mesh pads. roland has 8" toms on its TD-11KV, and that's already over your budget. going used and waiting for deals is what let me build my kit, which came in under a thou even with the HH controller and beaterless kick pedal - i could have afforded a tower but i wanted a beaterless kick.

    good luck buying or putting together your kit!

    Leave a comment:

Working...
X