Any Pearl drums enthusiasts? What’s your opinion on Pearl?

Jazzhead

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My first kit was a Pearl, I have a soft spot for this brand, Whenever I see that logo it puts a smile on my face.

With all these manufacturers on the market, where do they stand today? I know they have well-known endorsers and ALL of their models are made in Taiwan, their hardware is probably one of the better ones. What do you think of Pearl drums? Would you pick up a modern Pearl kit?
Looking at their website, the Masters Maple Complete seems to be a great choice for a new kit and a 20/14/12 is $1400 brand new.
Why would someone pick Pearl over Yamaha, Gretsch, or Ludwig?
 
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Tornado

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Because they offer so much at so many price points, they probably stand at the top of market share by a significant margin.

Personally, I like Pearl, especially their snares and bass drums. Bass snare and cymbals are basically your sound, so those really need to be great. But I like all the manufacturers because making a great sounding drum is something any of them can do.
 

Matched Gripper

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My first kit was a Pearl, I have a soft spot for this brand, Whenever I see that logo it puts a smile on my face.

With all these manufacturers on the market, where do they stand today? I know they have well-known endorsers and ALL of their models are made in Taiwan, their hardware is probably one of the better ones. What do you think of Pearl drums? Would you pick up a modern Pearl kit?
Looking at their website, the Masters Maple Complete seems to be a great choice for a new kit and a 20/14/12 is $1400 brand new.
Never owned one, but, the Pearl drums I’ve played have sounded great. I’m not a fan of the overall aesthetics of Pearl kits, eapecially the tom mounting hardware. But, I am a big fan of Pearl snare stands. Best designed snare stands I’ve seen.
 
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Never owned one, but, the Pearl drums I’ve played have sounded great. I’m not a fan of the overall aesthetics of Pearl kits, eapecially the tom mounting hardware. But, I am a big fan of Pearl snare stands. Best designed snare stands I’ve seen.
Fully agree on their snare stands...I have one from the 90’s that I still use today!
I owned an Export-Pro in the mid 90’s and it was a great sounding set - easy to tune, great wide open sounds, and recorded really well in various situations. Agree their hardware is bulky, but have not revisited or seriously investigated their drums in a while.
 

the_dude

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I’m by no means a Pearl “fanatic “ but 2 of my sets are Pearl.
I prefer the sound of the Pearl Midtown over Ludwig Breakbeats. Owned the Breakbeats first, sold them and needed those size drums again that worked well for a particular band that played venues with small stages. Heard the Midtown set and prices for both being the same opted for the Pearls. I don’t mind the look of the single tom mount.
I also own Red Crystalbeats which have no bd tom mount. I think they sound great.
 

NobleCooleyNut

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Not a Pearl fan at all to be honest . There are so many other brands I would choose before Pearl . They just don’t excite me at all. This is not to say they are bad drums , they just don’t tick off all the boxes for me . I have owned two Pearl kits over my career with the last being a reissue Wood Fibreglass kit I got in trade . Played them at one gig and knew after the first song I would be selling them . Just not for me .
 

unregisteredalien

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My first kit was a set of Pearl Forums. Budget hand-me-downs but perfectly solid and did the job. I moved away from Pearl when I upgraded, but I respect their work and wouldn't rule out going back.

I still buy and use Pearl hardware exclusively (the only exception being tom mounts which match my shells). To me, it's a great combination of good build and clean looks at a competitive price.
 

lrod1707

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My first "good kit" was a new Pearl Export 9 pc. back in like 1989. It was a huge step up from my first ever kit which was a no brand Asian 5 pc. My inspiration to buy Pearl was watching a Living Colour concert (They opened for the Rolling Stones). I saw Will Calhoun playing his Pearl kit and that was all it took. It was fine considering it served many gigs of the 80's rock stuff I was playing back then. I had it till I was older and eventually sold it and got a Yamaha e-kit. Once I really got back into drumming I went with Ludwig. And for my last kit that I bought, I considered Pearl as one of the possibilities but again ended up on USA made Ludwigs. The USA made Pearl's are ridiculously priced! But Pearl makes good stuff overall. I think all the manufacturers today make good kits. In the end, the choice is what price you want to pay, what materials/features you want and what sound you are after. And of course what brand you'll wanna own! This is what I saw in a (live setting) that drove me to Pearl back then:

 
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Wxmaggot

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I love Pearl drums. First "real" kit I bought with my own money was a Pearl Session, new in the early 90's. Birch/Mahogany. 10, 12, 14, 20" kick. That kick THUMPED! Easy to tune, paid the bills for several years. Matter of fact played em up until 2016 when I got my Gretsch Renowns. Just wanted something different.
Got an Omar Hakim snare years ago. I have since sold it and I honestly regret it now. Great, great snare. Power piccolo, 5x13. Tuning range was nuts.
I absolutely loved my Pearls and would buy another set, no question. Their hardware is rock solid and I still use the 900 series with my Renowns today.
 

SpinaDude

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I don't have much experience with Pearl. I really admire their customization choices, and appreciate the fact that they offer so many finishes. But, other than when I was 14 and wanted a 9 piece monster Export like Irod (I used to drool over drum catalogs), I was never interested in owning one. Of the brands you mentioned, I would always go to Yamaha first. But a I'm currently playing Tama (and love it), I'd likely choose that above all else.

I am interested in a couple of their snares: 15" Mahogany Sensitone and the Fiberglass/Kapur. Other than that, they don't call to me.
 

aparker2005

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Currently I own a new Session Studio Select kit. To be completely honest, this kit sounds just as good as my Yamaha recording customs. Beautiful drums, exceptionally built, and completely road worthy.

Their sensitone snares are excellent. I've wanted a 402 for a while, but honestly with my sensitone aluminum, that want is pretty much gone.

The Masterworks Rosewood snare I just got is the best snare drum I've ever owned. And I've went through a ton!
 

snappy

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Never owned one, but, the Pearl drums I’ve played have sounded great. I’m not a fan of the overall aesthetics of Pearl kits, eapecially the tom mounting hardware. But, I am a big fan of Pearl snare stands. Best designed snare stands I’ve seen.
Sonor makes great drums.
No offense intended to the owners.
To me, the Pearl pipes look better than this tom suspension system.
 

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JDA

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Think with Pearl you have to move over to their system of hardware. What I mean by that...the previous stuff you have? doesn't fit.
For example I never ran into an issue- with a hi hat clutch and a hi hat stands rod.
My clutch would not fit on a Pearl hi hat stand.
That kinda soured me

the drums are fine and generic and maybe some are very upper end. But if you have to retool your whole history (parts, stands, adapters, even nuts and bolts, cymbal toppers, etc..) and start to do it "their" way
I think..

owned, Gretsch, Ludwig, Tama were kinda interchangeable
the Premier were specific.
Pearl are like kinda foreign in a way- like NISSAN- like owning a nissan - not the most popular but there's plenty of them around
 
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Targalx

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The higher-end Pearl drums sound great. I've played their MLX maple kits (not mine, it was a house kit at a local studio back in the 1990s), those sounded wonderful and were easy to tune.

I cannot, however, deal with the massive L-pipe tom arms. That is a deal breaker.

I owned a Pearl hi-hat stand for nearly 30 years! Bought it brand new in 1990-91, sold it just a year or two ago. Still worked! Their hardware is/was tough, I can attest to that.
 

equipmentdork

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I have a soft spot for them. My dad got me a Pearl bass drum pedal in 1977(which I still have and use), and I thought, "Cool! Just like Peter Criss!". 10 years later, got a steel Free Floating snare which became my go to. Years later, I have 2 MLX kits and a Session kit, the original run with the black circle badge which sounds just superb. With--gasp!--ISS mounts. I'm no drum genius, but they work fine for me.


Dan
 

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