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Best options for upgrading from TD-10 +TDW-1

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  • Best options for upgrading from TD-10 +TDW-1

    I'm looking to move up a gear from my ancient but totally reliable kit, a TD-10 with TDW-1 expansion card, and I'm not sure how best to do it. Currently I use a PD-120 for my snare, 2 x PD-100s for toms, PD-7s for cymbals and hi hat, an FD-7 for hi-hat control and a KD-7 for kick.

    I'd like to get much better dynamic range, more realistic sounds, and have cymbals and hi-hat that act more like the real thing. Top priority is more realistic dynamic range.

    What are my best options? Do I need to upgrade the brain and all the pads? Or can I get away with just the brain and cymbal pads? Or do I need to bite the bullet and look at a full TD-30 kit?

    Looking to keep costs down if possible, but ready to spend if needs be!

    Last edited by BarT; 03-03-14, 03:01 PM.

  • #2
    Welcome to the forum, mitchino!

    I'm totally understanding where you want to go with this. Fear not ...you can still keep some of your gear - adding in a few more pieces, mostly in the cymbal-department, and of course: a newer module.

    For the sake of comprehensive viewing, I'll divide the whole adventure into sections, like so:
    1. Things to keep
    2. Things to invest in ('Second-hand', ...or 'New' if you prefer)
    3. Upgrades at a later stage

    Let's start!

    1. Things to keep
    • PD-100's for toms, PD-120 as your snare:
      The good news is, you can keep your existing PD pads without much worrying! Your PD-100's will serve you fine, and the PD-120 should get by at least until a later stage.
    • PD-7's: Keep these too! They will make good auxiliary pads - ...for stuff like tamborines, handclaps and the ever-popular cowbell!
    • FD-7: Will be supported (at least) by newer Roland modules, if you decide you don't want a dedicated hihat-stand anyway. Or it could be made part of an actual hihat stand, too.
    • KD-7: You could use that with a new incarnation of your kit as well. For example on the left, next to your hihat pedal, if you want to play left-foot-clave, or cowbell-patterns.

    2. Things that you would need to spend money
    • A CY-15 ride-cymbal:
      You will want new cymbals! This one is good example for a three-zone ride-cymbal. If you don't need the fancier color of the new ones, the older standard 'Black' version can be picked up second-hand for a fair price.
    • CY-14's as crashes:
      These are still in production as part of the TD-30KV kit. Around already for years in three different color-variants, these are still a fine choice! As an alternative to those, there is another fine option in the form of the Yamaha PCY-model crashes. As above: If you don't need the fancier colors...
    • VH-11 or 12 or 13 hihat pad:
      Depending on your wants and needs, you may pick up either of those as your new hihat. The VH-13 is the most current of these and the successor to the VH-12. Both the 13 and 12 are two-part hihats, with separate top- and bottom-cymbals. The VH-11 is a simpler 'one-cymbal' hihat, and in common with the VH-12 can be had at a good price, since both of these are not as new as the VH-13.
    • A KD-120 or KD-140 bassdrum pad:
      Pretty self-explanatory. The KD-140 is the newest one, the biggest in size, but also the most pricey. Better look at the smaller KD-120, it will do just as nicely and can be had for a lot less. And as another option, you may prefer the feel of a KD-9 - the choices are all yours.
    • The module:
      This is what it all boils down to - you will need an updated module! Depending on what you can snatch up here, it will also be closely tied to your hihat options (see above), and can have an effect on other pad choices.

    3. Upgrades at a later stage

    The most significant updates on a TD-30 kit are the hihats (VH-13) and the new snare pad (PD-128). Depending on what you pick as your module, you may want all the benefits of the new snare. So, further down the road, you can still choose to upgrade your existing PD-120 snare to the newest PD-128, if the rest of your kit is in place!

    Two additional thoughts, if you allow me...

    1. If you've got a computer that can handle drum-software, you can get a better dynamic range by using your TD-10 as a trigger-interface for playing VST(computer-) sounds. Lots of people are doing this successfully. You may still need to get a better module down the road, though, if you wish to have better trigger-technology.

    2. Look at the competition, mainly the module by 2box. The recommendations by me above won't change much regarding the pads, and you'll need new cymbals anyway - so not much compatibility-hassles there, if you look into other modules at this stage of your planning!

    All the best on your journey! Happy Drumming!


    Last edited by hairmetal-81; 03-04-14, 08:39 AM.

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



    • #3
      wow thanks for the effort that went into that reply!

      So since I posted I looked into VST software as this seemed a cheapish option as an upgrade and I now have Superior Drummer running via Toontrack Solo on my Macbook Pro triggered from the TD-10! Have to say I love it - getting rid of the machine gun snare sound is amazing. Still got an awful lot to learn, but now I have different questions!

      I think the next thing I'd like to do is upgrade the cymbals and hi-hat as you suggested. Do you think I still need to upgrade the module as well? I'd like to be able to have the three zone ride and also have the closed hi-hat respond to foot pressure to give different sounds. What's the cheapest module I can get away with? I'm assuming I don't need to go all the way to a TD30?

      ​When triggering the Superior samples, and trying to maximise dynamic range, is that best done using the trigger settings on the TD-10, or in the settings of superior drummer?


      • #4
        Thanks! ...not much more than 'finger excercises'....

        Upgrading the module depends: If you are not utterly disapointed (...for whatever reason) with the triggering performance, don't update the module just yet. Save it up for a later stage - take your existing TD-10 and roll with it! The more important update in your current situation IMO will definitively be the cymbals! ...Hihat and Ride!

        A CY-15 ride is still kinda the 'pinnacle', it will work flawlessly with all current modules, and can be had used at good prices. For the hihat, the module in use and the hihat are a close friendship - partners in crime, so to speak. For your situation, choice will be dead easy, as really your only choice will be the VH-11. The combination of TD-10 & TDW-1 will offer 'basic support' (rather than 'full support') for the VH-11, and the VH-11 only!

        The good news is, you can save some bucks on the VH-11 and pick one up second-hand. Same can be said about the CY-15, too!


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