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DIY Pearl RT vs. new TD9KX vs. used TD10x

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  • DIY Pearl RT vs. new TD9KX vs. used TD10x

    Hi everyone,

    I'm looking for a kit with the following features, in descending importance order:

    (a) acoustic-like feel (responsiveness of cymbals and heads, setup and location of various components etc)
    (b) rather small (although not miniature...) footprint
    (c) silent operation
    (d) nice sounds

    At first, I though about a new TD9KX kit or a used TD10x kit - both should cost roughly the same and have their pluses and minuses.

    Then, after a deep dive into the DIY forum, another option has emerged -- buy a cheap, used A-set and convert it using home-made triggers.

    Keeping feature (b) in mind, I focused on small / travel sets.
    My idea is to get a new/used pearl rhythm traveler, used TD10x module, and new/used CY14, CY15 and VH11. Use the cymbal and hh stands that come with the pearl RT for the HH and ride (+ get another one for the crash).

    I intend to use the existing pearl mesh heads and mount some piezo triggers on the snare, toms and kick shells. I have some basic soldering skills and this task seems doable.

    It should cost about 30% less than the TD9/10 kits, but money is not the real issue here.

    I'd like to hear from you guys which option would YOU choose - a 100% factory-made E-set or a converted A-set? Which setup would be better for my needs? Are there any caveats I should take into consideration when going for an A-to-E conversion?

    (and minor one: how well does the positional sensing feature work with converted acoustic snares?)

    Thanks in advance,

    btw, this is my second post here. This forum is fantastic!
    Last edited by abe; 08-14-08, 12:03 PM.

  • #2
    Just my personal opinion but the only way an electric kit really looks visibly like an acoustic is to use a full uncut acoustic kit to build your electric kit. I don't think the Rhythm Traveler kit look any more like a genuine acoustic kit than a Roland factory kit. And I'd think the Roland kit would be much more durable overall.


    • #3
      A converted A-to-E kit will feel more natural than a TD-9 because of the sizes of the heads. Store-bought Roland kits tend to feel comparatively small with all 10" and 12" triggers, where a converted kit can have, for example, a 13" snare. I mean, really, who plays a 10" acoustic floor tom? Plus, V-11's or a DIY hi-hat on a stand will feel much better than the stationary Roland hi-hat trigger that comes with the TD-9KX.

      In my honest opinion, if you have the time and tools to complete a conversion, I would go that route and get an acoustic kit and a used TD-10. Having Roland cymbals either way will be the quietest for sure.

      By the way, Pearl mesh heads are COMPLETELY WORTHLESS and I would make my own. Solar Screen or Pet-D-Fence screen both seem to be great options for DIY heads, and much cheaper.

      Hope this helps.


      • #4
        What do yo mean 10" and 12"? Ib the case of the TD9, try 8" and 10"!!
        Personally, I'm fine with 10 and 12" toms and snare - especially if you're after a compact footprint.
        . digitalDrummer
        Review index


        • #5
          Originally posted by allanjohn View Post
          What do yo mean 10" and 12"? Ib the case of the TD9, try 8" and 10"!!
          Personally, I'm fine with 10 and 12" toms and snare - especially if you're after a compact footprint.
          Seriously? 8" and 10"? Now that is what I call miniature. I use 10" and 12" sized triggers myself these days, but I went all out and bought new Gibraltar racks to suspend them all. Something to consider...building an e-kit made of 8", 10" or 12" triggers requires the means to suspend the triggers, where converting an a-kit doesn't necessarily require a rack or whatnot.

          If money grows on trees in your backyard, then by all means, just pick some and go buy a Roland kit...but you'll be missing out on all of that DIY fun!