Drum brands (starting over from scratch)

Rab35

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Sitting down behind a kit and playing it will help me to realize what I'm looking for. I'd need to get to a drum shop that has various kits to try out. Also, I am more of a classic rock/rock/metal/prog type of a player, so I'm looking for more of a big bottom end.

I'm very intrigued by the Tama Star Bubinga and Star Walnut kits. I like the lower tonality of the drums compared to maple.

I like the Gretsch USA Custom and Brooklyn drums. I live 2 hours away from the Gretsch factory in Ridgeland, SC and I had the opportunity to meet Paul Cooper and take a tour of the facility to see how it all goes down. I was very impressed. Paul was a gracious host.

Hendrix Drums are newer to me and I like the solid stave concept. The price is very high however.

I hear good things about Yamaha but I've never been interested for some reason. Other than Gadd and Beauford, I'm not too aware of their line of drums. I guess YouTube can be my friend.
 
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Rab35

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I'm Ludwig guy but have never heard a bad Tama kit so why the change?
I may not change. I've been playing the same thing for a long time and to be honest, I've been sort of snobby about it in my mind towards other drums. I know there are many great drum makers out there and I'm in a phase of experimentation and discovery to see if there is something else out there that may suit me better.
 

PaulD

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Even if you want top of the line, you're going to have to think about what shell material you want.
Sitting down behind a kit and playing it will help me to realize what I'm looking for. I'd need to get to a drum shop that has various kits to try out. Also, I am more of a classic rock/rock/metal/prog type of a player, so I'm looking for more of a big bottom end.

I'm very intrigued by the Tama Star Bubinga and Star Walnut kits. I like the lower tonality of the drums compared to maple.

I like the Gretsch USA Custom and Brooklyn drums. I live 2 hours away from the Gretsch factory in Ridgeland, SC and I had the opportunity to meet Paul Cooper and take a tour of the facility to see how it all goes down. I was very impressed. Paul was a gracious host.

Hendrix Drums are newer to me and I like the solid stave concept. The price is very high however.
Not quite in the same league, but I recently bought a Tama Starclassic Birch/Bubinga kit and I really, really like the sound from it. On Friday, I added a Starphonic Bubinga snare and it's great also.

The other aspect you ought to consider (IMO) is the hardware. Before I bought the Starclassic, I looked at the other major brands and I liked the Tama mounts the best by a significant margin.

Finally, I go close look at a Hendrix set on Friday and that's a league beyond the Tama Star line (though Tama's hardware is still nicer).
 

Bri6366

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Sitting down behind a kit and playing it will help me to realize what I'm looking for. I'd need to get to a drum shop that has various kits to try out. Also, I am more of a classic rock/rock/metal/prog type of a player, so I'm looking for more of a big bottom end.

I'm very intrigued by the Tama Star Bubinga and Star Walnut kits. I like the lower tonality of the drums compared to maple.

I like the Gretsch USA Custom and Brooklyn drums. I live 2 hours away from the Gretsch factory in Ridgeland, SC and I had the opportunity to meet Paul Cooper and take a tour of the facility to see how it all goes down. I was very impressed. Paul was a gracious host.

Hendrix Drums are newer to me and I like the solid stave concept. The price is very high however.

I hear good things about Yamaha but I've never been interested for some reason. Other than Gadd and Beauford, I'm not too aware of their line of drums. I guess YouTube can be my friend.
Pearl Reference might be worth looking into.
 

jaymandude

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i have a few nice kits, one or two are “ high end “ that I love but mentioning them doesn’t matter.

I played all of them first. And some are brands that other guys here eventually sold. So ....
 

Rab35

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Even if you want top of the line, you're going to have to think about what shell material you want.
Very true. I've been playing maple for over 20 years. I've looked into the different shells out there. Walnut and bubinga strike my interest as well as mixed woods such as what Gretsch does (from Keller) or what DW can do. There are some boutique makers that offer different shells. Not sure I want to go the boutique route.

The Tama Starclassic walnut/birch has caught my attention too.

If I can find it, there's an older video of DW's candyland where Thomas Lang plays a maple/mahogany kit and it sounds pretty awesome to my ear.
 

RIDDIM

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Sitting down behind a kit and playing it will help me to realize what I'm looking for. I'd need to get to a drum shop that has various kits to try out. Also, I am more of a classic rock/rock/metal/prog type of a player, so I'm looking for more of a big bottom end.

I'm very intrigued by the Tama Star Bubinga and Star Walnut kits. I like the lower tonality of the drums compared to maple.

I like the Gretsch USA Custom and Brooklyn drums. I live 2 hours away from the Gretsch factory in Ridgeland, SC and I had the opportunity to meet Paul Cooper and take a tour of the facility to see how it all goes down. I was very impressed. Paul was a gracious host.

Hendrix Drums are newer to me and I like the solid stave concept. The price is very high however.

I hear good things about Yamaha but I've never been interested for some reason. Other than Gadd and Beauford, I'm not too aware of their line of drums. I guess YouTube can be my friend.
- I have the Gretsch disease; I can relate.
- Yamaha makes great hardware and drums. If you can snag a Phoneix kit, well tuned, you might noit want to play anything else.
Except perhaps...
- Once you sit behind a stave kit a la Hendrix - carved in reinforcement rings, thinner mid sections - you may start thinking about the impact of missing a mortgage payment or 2. That said, seek others who make a similarly designed stave shell - and for used kits. You might find something at a nicer price point. And if you do find another source, there's nothing to stop you from finding your own hardware source, e.g., DrumFactoryDirect.com and having them drill holes to your specs, then installing the hardware yourself. Also, take care to verify the edges are right for the kinds of music you play.
 

drumnhands

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I'll always appear to be biased in favor of Yamaha because I work here but I've been a die hard fan mush longer than I've been an employee.. But to me, what sets Yamaha apart is the method used in making the shells. The staggered diagonal seam and air seal system creates a very round shell with the tension spread evenly, so that the shells are strong and resonant. Yamaha drums have a very wide tuning range, so you get a really versatile drum that's musical at all tunings from high to low. They react well to different types of heads and everything works on them. The hardware, fit and finish is first rate. I have an Absolute Hybrid Maple kit in my backline that has been to many, many festivals over the years, been loaned to artists from Snarky Puppy to Slayer. I have yet to replace a single broken or stripped piece of hardware on any drum in the entire shell bank. There are a lot of great drums out there, and I like a lot of them. But in my personal experience I don't think there's a drum that works as well, in as many situations, for as long, as Yamaha.
 

squidart

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Maybe you should consider the type of music you’ll be playing in this formula as well. Do you want fat and round, bright and projecting, sustain for days or a quick punch? I know that has a lot to do woth tuning and head selection but it might help narrow the field a bit.
 

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