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Buying acoustic drums without hearing them first

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  • Buying acoustic drums without hearing them first

    Hey all,

    I have been playing my V-Drums for several years now. My band is starting to get small (very small) gigs, and I think I will at some point need to buy an acoustic set. Am I crazy for

    1) buying a set over ebay
    2) buying a set that I haven't heard and played myself.

    Finally, what is Yamaha's top of the line set of maple drums? The maple custom or the maple custom absolute?

    Finally, while every set and manufacturer is obviously different, are there any general rules of thumb that often hold? (e.g., DW overpriced, Starclassic good bargain-- those are random examples)

    Thanks for taking time to read. I appreciate it.

  • #2
    Re: Buying acoustic drums without hearing them first

    Originally posted by Kevin
    Am I crazy for

    1) buying a set over ebay
    2) buying a set that I haven't heard and played myself.
    I can only speak for myself, but I wouldn't buy any drum that I didn't get a good look at, first. That includes playing them a bit, as well. There are too many things you can't see on the web, like uneven or dinged bearing edges, scratched finishes, rattles in the hardware, the overall sound of the kit itself, etc... Of course, many people have gotten great deals on Ebay and sites like that. I guess you have to decide what degree of uncertainty you're comfortable with. I don't know what Yamaha's newest top of the line kit is, I prefer Tama for acoustics.


    • #3
      Yamaha advertises their "best" kit as being the Maple Custom(I believe), with the Recording Custom running a close second. Of course, they just released an Oak Custom line, so I'm not sure where that stands in the hierarchy. In my opinion, if you like Yamahas, thy're all pretty good. As far as I can tell, the big difference between the Customs and their Absolute counter partsis a few plies of shell thickness and the price. My kit contains three Beech Custom Absolute toms, and I adore them.

      My one complaint about Yamaha would be limited choices in terms of sizes and finishes.



      • #4
        1. you already decided between maple and birch wood. Apart from the question whether all those differences companies and drummers always talk about are that big or not

        2. you can't go wrong with a top-line kit as long as the construction is concerned

        3. 50 percent of a drum sound is made by the drum head

        4. another 30 percent of the drum sound is made by proper tuning

        So: where can you go wrong?

        About the hierarchy in price:
        1. Yamaha Maple custom
        2. Yamaha Maple custom absolute
        2. Yamaha Recording (= birch) custom
        3. Yamaha Birch custom absolute
        4. Yamaha Oak custom
        4. Yamaha Beech custom
        5. Yamaha Beech custom absolute

        (and none of those kits is really custom )


        • #5
          Hi Kevin - Seeing as how you are not located a very long way from civilization, there's really no reason why you should opt for anything sight un-seen. Check the locals and try out those skins.



          • #6
            Don't know if you made the purchase yet , but I can tell you first hand about Yamaha's.

            I recently sold my Maple custom set and bought a Maple custom absolute set.

            The customs are heavier and more money.
            They have the mini lugs that are gold plated.
            The badge is a little nicer.......

            The Absolutes are a little less money a little less weight and sound wonderfull.

            My reason was I had a large kit that included:
            Real nice with the turquoise finish.
            I had them for about 7 years.
            In the last few years I found that I was using a four peice kit and leaving a lot home.

            I had a friend drooling over them and offered to sell them to him and decided on the lighter, less expensive absolutes.

            From talking to Yamaha I was told that the absolutes have a lower pitch than the customs and I wanted to make mine a little more "custom" by adding the wood hoops to my toms.

            All I can say is WOW!
            I am not sorry, however, I have a much smaller set.
            I call them "old guy sizes".

            14x14 floor tom
            18x20 kick
            Just picked up the Manu Katche snare too along with my Spirit snare.
            I am happy as a pig in doo doo.
            I hope this helps.

            Yamaha is a top notch company with first rate support.
            Go for it.

            The original Gig Pig.