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Aquarian On-Head and In-Head Review

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  • Aquarian On-Head and In-Head Review

    I think I might be the first person to actually own both the Acquarian in-head and on-head triggers, so I thought I would write a concise review.

    The in-head are a standard mylar head with 3 layers with the FSR built into one of the drum head layers. They trigger nice but they are LOUD. Even with a mesh reso head and the drum filled with stuffing it has a loud thwack. This is not for quite practice or apartment/townhouse dwellers. I would not recommend these to anyone unless they are gigging live and are looking for a very precise drum trigger. These would be excellent in an environment where the band is loud. If it is a restaurant or small venue forget it. The drum would easily be heard in the crowd. Feel wise they are identical to an acoustic head. Sensitivity is better than any electronic drum head that I have played on. I have owned Roland mesh, Yamaha rubber, Yamaha silicon, and Pearl Tru-Tracs. There is zero x-talk, hot spots, or double triggering.

    The on-head are a foam/silicon type pad that sits on your standard drum head. The pad sits about an inch above the rim. These pads are pretty much silent - a lot quieter than standard rubber or mesh heads. They feel great. It is my opinion they are a cross between the Yamaha silicon and a soft rubber practice pad. It has a very nice rebound without the "wet spongy" feel that some use to describe the Yamaha pad or the trampoline bounce that the mesh produces. Definitely easier on the wrist than rubber. To me, these trigger better than the in-head with improved sensitivity and zero x-talk and double triggering. They also are more rigid so I assume they will last longer than the in-head heads. I thought the pad sitting above the rim would be quirky but I didn't notice it a bit when playing. I simply lowered my drum to compensate and went about playing with no problems. As far as longevity, these should last for years or decades. There isn’t any flex like the in-head so I assume these will be very long lasting.

    In summary, the Aquarian on-head pads are the best e-drum surface that I have ever played. I give them a 5 star rating. The in-head are excellent triggers too but due to noise I give them a 3 star rating. If you are gigging in a large venue, I would give them a 5 star rating. However, you can put a neoprene drum mute on top of the in-head and it makes it very quite and still triggers great. If you are a heaver hitter, you may need to plan on replacement in-heads but I think you will be fine with the on-head.
    HTH,

    Chris
    Last edited by csnow; 02-08-14, 01:46 PM.

  • #2
    Thank you, thank you, Chris!

    I've got my excitement perked up on the OnHeads!
    .
    .
    Greetings from Switzerland,
    - Dänoh



    "My best friends' name is J-SON. They used to call him 'Mr. Parse.' He has an 'Error'..!"

    http://www.vdrums.com/forum/core/cus...ar33631_4.jpeg

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    • #3
      40 hour life span on an on-head? Yikes! No thank you. Especially when a Roland mesh head could probably last 40 years.

      Thanks for the summary though. I'm sure it will be helpful to those interested.
      I think my work is done here.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Tommy_D View Post
        40 hour life span on an on-head? Yikes! No thank you. Especially when a Roland mesh head could probably last 40 years.

        Thanks for the summary though. I'm sure it will be helpful to those interested.
        No, the 40hrs was for the in-head, not the on-head. Also, they stated that 40 hour lifetime was for metal drummers on tour. I don't know how often touring metal drummers change their heads, but I don't think that is beyond the reasonable life of mylar based head. For a home user or light hitter, the head may last for years. I never really wear out acoustic heads because I am not a heavy hitter. I change them every couple of years at most.

        I don't see any reason the on-head wouldn't last years or decades. The on-head is so far superior to Roland heads it isn't even on the same scale. No hot spots, no double triggering, no cross-talk, no bounce, and sensitivity beyond belief. The only positive Roland has is positional sensing. I have owned and played pretty much all of them. I don't have any bias or loyalty to any brand. Just reporting my findings and opinion, but at the end of the day it is my opinion and others may hate what I like or vice versa.
        Last edited by csnow; 01-13-14, 09:43 PM.

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        • perceval
          perceval commented
          Editing a comment
          I'm pretty sure PS could be achieved with the FSR onHead, but wouldn't use the same technology as found in current Roland modules. Just need someone to tweak how the input information into the module to get PS. That is, hoping Roland hasn't patented PS... That would be sad

      • #5
        Originally posted by Tommy_D View Post
        40 hour life span on an on-head? Yikes! No thank you.
        40 hour life span on an in-head!

        (...a slight difference, but an important one!)
        .
        .
        Greetings from Switzerland,
        - Dänoh



        "My best friends' name is J-SON. They used to call him 'Mr. Parse.' He has an 'Error'..!"

        http://www.vdrums.com/forum/core/cus...ar33631_4.jpeg

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        • #6
          So..are you selling these too since you are ditching e's comletely?
          8 piece DIY Acrylic, 2x2Box DrumIt5, Gen16 4xDCP, DIY Acrylic&Gen16 Conversions, Sleishman Twin-QuadSteele hybrid, Gibraltar&DrumFrame rack, DW9502LB, Midi Knights Pro Lighting
          http://www.airbrushartists.org/DreamscapeAirbrushRealm

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          • #7
            No, I think they have inspired me to keep the 2box or at minimum get a Yamaha 502 and use my PC if the 2box sells. I ordered them last week and was planning on returning them to Guitar Center. I promised myself I wouldn't open the package when it arrived. Well, I failed miserably at that today. I just had to try them first. Big mistake, I fell in love with them. They just trigger and feel perfect to me. This hobby is like a bad drug - there is no leaving it. I had so much fun playing tonight for a coupled of hours. The 2box, in-head/on-head, gen 16 setup s just a blast to play.
            Last edited by csnow; 01-13-14, 11:31 PM.

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            • #8
              I would love to get me a set of on-heads. Although they're way out of my price range, and the high tax rate and that stuff here doesn't quite ease that issue :P Someday though.. someday!

              Comment


              • #9
                Great review! Funny thing is though, Ive never ever had one single problem with double or false triggering on a Roland pad ever with my TD30. Even with the Jobeky drum kit, nada. The only problem I ever had was with the kick drum being a bit bouncy. So it was a simple retrigg cancel setting I tweaked and that was it. As far as snare and toms, never had double triggering.
                - EKIT: Jobeky Drums: Custom 5 piece "Lacewood fade" & Hart 13" Pro Chrome snare. ROLAND MG V-CYMBALS
                - AKIT: PDP Concept Maple by DW. Zildjian K & A Custom cymbals. Hybrid acoustic mic'd / 2Box triggered kit

                MY YOU TUBE DRUM COVER CHANNEL: www.youtube.com/gregthegroove

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                • #10
                  The only double triggering issues I had on my TD20 was when I was playing around with head tension. I was trying to get rid of a bad hot spot when I first started using VST by trying various head tensions. When the head was loose, the hot spot was less severe but I started getting some double triggering. It was very minor. My biggest gripe with Roland was hot spots. I didn't like mesh but I didn't mind it either if that makes sense. The only time I had severe double triggering was with external DDrum triggers with mesh.

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                  • #11
                    Thanks for the review! I have two quick questions. First, how does the Trigger Signal Booster (box) attach to the drum. Is it cumbersome or problematic in any way? Secondly, how do you think the onhead will do in terms of looking new over time? One of the videos from NAMM described it as being similar to a mouse pad. I don't know about others here, but my mouse pads start to look pretty grungy over time. Will the onhead pick up stick marks and whatnot?
                    Roland TD-12, Pearl DRX-1 tom and snare pads, Roland PD-8 pads for cymbals, DW pedals and stands, Pearl and Gibraltar hardware

                    Comment


                    • Espen
                      Espen commented
                      Editing a comment
                      Does anyone know are the onheads available in Europe somewhere? The taxes and customs duties from US to Finland are way too high for this big purchase.

                  • #12
                    The "box" attaches to the hoop via one of the rim lugs. Once tightened it is secure and doesn't move. I cant comment on the long-term wear of the pads. I am sure they will get marks or dirty considering they are white. I definitely wouldn't suggest you practice while eating a peanut butter and jelly sandwich

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                    • #13
                      Great review. On-heads are a good option to practice quietly using the a-kit and also for playing live with the right looks! They can be used stand alone, without drums, using double hoops and stands... Should be fun!
                      Last edited by rrpf; 01-24-14, 01:17 PM. Reason: I mistyped in-head instead of on-head. Oops
                      Gretsch USA 1983 with Roland RT-30 triggers and ATV AD5, Korg Wavedrum Global, Sonor Perfect Balance Pedal, Roland KT-10 pedal (left). Zildjian, Paiste Superior Drummer 2, Studio Drummer, Steven Slate Drums

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                      • #14
                        Yes, great review. I'm super interested in the onHeads. Does the "inbox" require a battery? I'm wondering how they go from resistance on the head to voltage output to send to the drum brain.

                        thanks!

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                        • #15
                          It has an internal battery. I haven't had to change one but I would suspect a watch type battery but I am not sure.

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