Practice/acoustic electric hybrid kit

Joblivion0073

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Hey Y'all ,

I am slowly getting my first practice kit together and I am thinking about queit practice and possibly triggers for recording etc. I was wondering what peoples opinions on what mesh head and low volume cymbals has the closest feel to a real heads and cymbals?

Also interms of converting an acoustic to a hybrid kit, is it worth it? What would i need for the cymbals?
 

bpaluzzi

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The Drumtec 3-ply and/or ATV heads are the best that I've found.

I'm a big fan of the Zildjian L80. They're the quietest I've found, and they _feel_ right under your hands. There are other "better" sounding low-volume cymbals, but they trade actual quietness (either a little or a lot) to get those improvements.

I went mesh heads w/ external triggers on an acoustic kit for a while, and eventually got sick of the limitations with single edge-mount triggers. There are some internal "bar" style triggers, but they all have the center cone / hotspot issue, which is even worse. I wish there was someone doing drop-in triggers with 3 cones around the edge (like the Roland VAD / EFNote / ATV kits), but I haven't seen anything yet. So I just bit the bullet and got an ATV kit, which is absolutely fantastic. I should caveat that I don't use the ATV kick drum -- I've found mesh head kick drums to not really work for me. I either use a heavily muffled kick w/ mylar heads (and two pillows inside), with a standard external trigger, or a Roland KT-10 beaterless pedal. The KT-10 feels incredible, but it looks verrrrry "electronic". When I've used it live, I've always used a narrow "dummy" bass drum to hide it (which also serves as a stand for the rack tom). The muffled kick is nice when you're playing with other musicians -- it gives them a bit of thump/feep in the room, while not increasing the volume too much.

I've since upgraded the snare to the Roland digital drum, and it's fantastic. Positional sensing, automatic cross-stick detection, and no hotspotting.

That, combined with the 3-cone ATV toms and the KT-10 pedal, represent the state-of-the-art in electronic drums, at least to me.

Cymbals are trickier -- none of the "metal" cymbals have triggered well enough for me, and none of the "rubber" cymbals have the right feel. The Roland digital ride is pretty good, especially for a ride, but even it lets you down (mostly on feel) when you try to crash on it. I'm using a combination of Yamaha, Roland, and ATV cymbals, and they're all... fine. They get the job done, but that's about it.
 

Joblivion0073

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Cymbals are trickier -- none of the "metal" cymbals have triggered well enough for me, and none of the "rubber" cymbals have the right feel. The Roland digital ride is pretty good, especially for a ride, but even it lets you down (mostly on feel) when you try to crash on it. I'm using a combination of Yamaha, Roland, and ATV cymbals, and they're all... fine. They get the job done, but that's about it.
That's what I thought. Cymbals still have a ways to go in terms of feel. In terms of head thickness for your acoustic/electric drums, did you use single, double or triple ply mesh heads?
 

bpaluzzi

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That's what I thought. Cymbals still have a ways to go in terms of feel. In terms of head thickness for your acoustic/electric drums, did you use single, double or triple ply mesh heads?
I used the drumtec 3-ply "real feel" heads: https://www.drum-tec.com/drum-tec-real-feel-mesh-head

They're fantastic. I have the stock ATV heads on my drums now, but wouldn't hesitate to switch back to the real feel if they ever break.
 

bpaluzzi

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Did you ever try the roland power ply heads 2ply or the evans/remo 1 ply mesh heads?
Haven't tried any Roland heads, other than what's stock on the Digital Snare (which is a 3-ply)

Have used the Evans / Remo / Pearl 1-ply heads. They're fine for resonant heads (I had the Remo on the reso side with the Real feel up top), but wouldn't recommend them for batters. Waaaay too springy -- the "tennis racket" effect of the 1st generation VDrums were because of the heads.
 

swarfrat

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The advantages are basically looks. I like the compactness a e kit can give I'd you're going to go that route. Rubber cymbals suck even at pro prices IMO.

I'm playing L80's with an e kit and just not currently triggering. I've assembled some cheap cardioid condensers to try close micing and replacing the L80's but that's an ongoing experiment. I dearly hope this is the future though, and I have high hopes since.
 

Joblivion0073

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Practice heads for all tops and bottoms or no? Also, did you put a mesh head on the snare reso?
 

wolfereeno

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My experience is counter some of the adv. Conversion kits are a total waste of money and space IMO.

Mesh head pads are fine. Older ones work great. I converted some of the PD100 toms to 105's myself using a $10 kit.
Those low volume cymbals are annoying and still too loud. I like the rubber ones.
Older modules are fine. I use a TD30 and a TD7
I use SD3 pretty much exclusively and don't even turn the module's sounds on very often.

I can practice or record on this kit to my heart's content.

Save some money. But some Christmas lights instead.

The midifightertwister in the picture lets me mess with VST parameters and various things in Ableton live. Especially non-drum synth VST's.
 

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bpaluzzi

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Practice heads for all tops and bottoms or no? Also, did you put a mesh head on the snare reso?
If you want maximum quiet, then yet, you need to remove the mylar heads on the bottom, too. You can either replace them with mesh, or just remove them altogether (although you'll generally also want to remove the lower lugs then too, as they can rattle if left "empty")

My experience is counter some of the adv. Conversion kits are a total waste of money and space IMO.

Mesh head pads are fine. Older ones work great.
Those low volume cymbals are annoying and still too loud. I like the rubber ones.
Older modules are fine. I use a TD30

I can practice or record on this kit to my heart's content.

Save some money. But some christmas lights instead.
How is it saving money to buy an entirely new kit, versus using drums that the OP already owns?
 

Joblivion0073

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My experience is counter some of the adv. Conversion kits are a total waste of money and space IMO.

Mesh head pads are fine. Older ones work great.
Those low volume cymbals are annoying and still too loud. I like the rubber ones.
Older modules are fine. I use a TD30

I can practice or record on this kit to my heart's content.

Save some money. But some christmas lights instead.
Though I have considered this, rn I am only looking for a the quietist, most realistic practice kit possible. I cannot afford an electric kit and I find the heads much too bouncy. For the future I might think about it but it is way out of my price range rn. I also hate the rubber cymbals. Once there is an affordable more realistic feel cymbal for electric drums I will think about lol

I have tried at a drum shop just the mesh head on toms with mylar resoheads and besides the snare thought it was quiet enough. I have also tried putting a sound off pad on the toms for less bounce but that increased the volume so it was kind of counter productive. I wasn't crazy about the snare or kick sound though.

If there are some less bouncy affordable and quiet 2 or 3 ply heads, I would consider those for my snare and possibly eventually toms. Kind of really want to prioritize feel and quiet at this point. Using them for triggers would be a great bonus but not the priority rn.
 

wolfereeno

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I hear you but basically everything in my picture was bought used. I got my TD7 kit almost 30 years ago to upgrade from an original octopad. From the td7 kit, I still use a couple of the rubber pads and the rack. The rest of the pads happened gradually. I've yet to play any other flagship ekit that makes me feel like something's lacking.

When I hit them, I hear great drums in my phones. I can hit them hard or soft and they basically become invisible to where I know I'm playing drums.

Diff mesh heads have diff bounciness. I like the plain stock roland vdrum heads best. And the rubber cymbals are OK except for the really thin low end ones. I like the Yamahas and the Rolands just fine which are also cheap used.

Anyway I feel like I've saved a lot of money to spend elsewhere, like on a good RME interface.
 

Hypercaffium

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Here's what I used to build mine:
- L80s
- Remo Silentstrokes
- RTOM patches
- Cotton balls
- Moongel
- Yamaha EAD10
- Yamaha DT50S/DT50K triggers

It works both as a low volume acoustic kit and electronic/hybrid kit. Ask if you need more infos.
 

Joblivion0073

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Here's what I used to build mine:
- L80s
- Remo Silentstrokes
- RTOM patches
- Cotton balls
- Moongel
- Yamaha EAD10
- Yamaha DT50S/DT50K triggers

It works both as a low volume acoustic kit and electronic/hybrid kit. Ask if you need more infos.
So you use remonsilent strokes on all drums plus patch and maybe moongel???

Cottonballs inside all toms + snare means regular resos or silent stroke as well?

What do you do for the kick?

Do the powerply heads have less bounce? If so, are they worth the price/good for triggering?
 
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Hypercaffium

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My goal was to have a low volume kit I could play both acoustically and with triggers without bothering anyone. L80s generally work right out of the box while Silenstrokes are basically lifeless with no tone and no stick definition. Putting a circular patch on mesh heads boosts both tone and volume plus articulation is way more accurate. Rebound is definitely more realistic, unless you tune your mesh heads very high. I sugggested RTOM patches because they are perfect for that application, if you use Remo Silenstroke heads. I tried with many combinations of tape and these work best imho. I must say you need to tune both resonant and mesh heads of all your drums (including kick) to get the best tone and use dampening if needed. I used cotton balls on all my drums except for the bass drum. I've put just an Evans EQ clear patch on it to get more tone and attack, no patch and no dampening.
I prefer a very dry sounding kit with short sustain because it's more manageable when using triggers. I used two pieces of moongel on my L80 ride to reduce its sustain and tone a little bit, it's a little bit loud.
When I bought my EAD10 I literally didn't need to do anything to get a decent sound, it was already pretty clean and balanced. Adding triggers makes everything more interenting, especially if you are a student.

Sorry, I've never used Roland mesh heads but I think they're thicker and probably louder than Silenstrokes. I tried RTOM LV mesh heads and they sounded great, but too loud for me. You must find a combination that works for your needs.
 

Joblivion0073

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My goal was to have a low volume kit I could play both acoustically and with triggers without bothering anyone. L80s generally work right out of the box while Silenstrokes are basically lifeless with no tone and no stick definition. Putting a circular patch on mesh heads boosts both tone and volume plus articulation is way more accurate. Rebound is definitely more realistic, unless you tune your mesh heads very high. I sugggested RTOM patches because they are perfect for that application, if you use Remo Silenstroke heads. I tried with many combinations of tape and these work best imho. I must say you need to tune both resonant and mesh heads of all your drums (including kick) to get the best tone and use dampening if needed. I used cotton balls on all my drums except for the bass drum. I've put just an Evans EQ clear patch on it to get more tone and attack, no patch and no dampening.
I prefer a very dry sounding kit with short sustain because it's more manageable when using triggers. I used two pieces of moongel on my L80 ride to reduce its sustain and tone a little bit, it's a little bit loud.
When I bought my EAD10 I literally didn't need to do anything to get a decent sound, it was already pretty clean and balanced. Adding triggers makes everything more interenting, especially if you are a student.

Sorry, I've never used Roland mesh heads but I think they're thicker and probably louder than Silenstrokes. I tried RTOM LV mesh heads and they sounded great, but too loud for me. You must find a combination that works for your needs.
Moongel on cymbals eh. Ok I'll have to try that. In tems of cymbals, are the L80's the quietest?
 

Hypercaffium

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No worries.

So if I was to use EAD10 without triggers it would still work?

Do you only use triggers on snare and kick or toms too?
EAD10 doesn't need triggers to work, it's basically a stereo microphone which captures both drums and cymbals. Like I said before, if your kit sounds decent acoustically you can use the EAD10 as a straight up microphone. Plus the EAD10 features an integrated kick drum trigger. It doesn't work very well with mesh heads in my experience, but it's usable.
I added separate triggers on everything (including the kick drum). I can choose whatever sample I want on drums and mix it with the acoustic sound of the kit.
 


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