Sonor Select Force

Wideglyd

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Hey all!
Pretty psyched..I just bought a Sonor Select Force in piano black as a brand new clearance from the Mapex factory. From what I have been looking at and reading the shells were made by Mapex (I’m a fan) in China with Canadian maple and Chinese maple. They sound great in all the videos I watched and the older threads seemed to have a lot of good to say. My exposure to Sonor has always been in their higher end lines and I was fortunate enough to play both the Horst Link Signature bubinga and Sonorlite’s for a number of years. I have always missed the way my sticks felt striking those drums. I’m sure these won’t have even close to the same feel or tone but I’m wondering if I could get some other feedback? The deed is done so I’m not turning back. $800 ($900 after tax and shipping) for a brand new stage 3 proved too difficult to pass up. Any thoughts or feedback would be helpful.
Cheers!
 

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Frank Godiva

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If your happy with it, that’s all that matters. It’s the player not the drums right?

Those came out in 2011 and replaced the 3007 line. The 3007 was 9 ply maple, the select force is 7 ply and the new AQ2 is also 7 ply Canadian maple and most likely the exact same shell as the Select Force it replaced.

These were not made by Mapex. These drums were designed in Germany and made in the KHS Tianjin, China. KHS also owns Mapex and manufactures Mapex in the same factory.

Here is an interview with KHM from Sonor in 2011 which sheds more light.

“JR - Sonor's manufacturing has globalized significantly in recent years. Do you feel that has been a positive thing for the high end consumer, or a detriment to the perception of the company?

KHM - In the mid 90's we have set the goal to raise our international presence and grow our business. This could only be achieved by addressing new consumer groups and look for new production locations. All products that we are manufacturing in China are developed, designed and engineered in the German headquarters. They are built on SONOR's Quality Standards. On top of that, all our made in Germany products are meeting the needs of the high end consumer more than ever. Today, I am glad to say that we have achieved our goals and we have worked our way into the top group of drum brands.

JR - How do you feel about the current product line? Even in the lower end there is a good coverage of options in shell materials and sizes. It also seems that Sonor has covered the entire spectrum of price points, and has really raised the bar on finish quality and the number of finish options. Do you feel that the current catalog represents Sonor's most diverse product line to date?

KHM - Yes, I would totally agree that the current catalog is by far the most diverse product line to date. We are reaching beginners to professionals. Every product line has its customer with specific needs and wishes and not only with the lower lines we are meeting exactly their perception. This is what makes the catalog so diverse in finishes, sizes, features etc. Furthermore, another very important fact is that SONOR is the only company in the industry to manufacture all types of percussion: Drums, Education, Latin and African Percussion as well as Marching instruments!

JR - With so much quality work going on in China, has it been difficult to make decisions on where to produce particular items? One may feel that items like the Giant Step pedals, and Artist series snare drums could be produced in China with a significant reduction in retail price with little discernible, if any change in quality. How does a decision to move production get made?

KHM - The products we are manufacturing in China are exactly adjusted to the production environment. As pointed out before we want to offer the right product for each of the consumer groups. However the SONOR brand stands for highest quality, innovation and German engineering. As in every industry there are high end consumers that exactly ask for these "features". In opposition to most of our competitors who build their high end products in Asia, we strongly believe that we can realize this demand here in Germany in the most optimal way.

JR - The Chinese made Phil Rudd Signature Snare Drum seemed to be well received on the dealer and consumer level. Do you feel that it helped change perspective of Chinese production in the minds of the consumer? Can we look forward to more snare drum projects with such an attractive price point?

KHM - Yes, there will be more projects, time will tell. This specific drum was well received because of the price performance ratio internationally. But I don't believe that only one product can change the basic perspective of Chinese Production of the consumer. Since the manufacturing standards and processes in China significantly changed in the last years I do believe that the basic perspective has changed as well on the consumer side, compared to about 20 years ago. When we made the production step in the 1990's with the Force series into China, it was important for us that the SONOR spirit carries on and consumers can rely on the product quality that they are accustomed to. People were much more critical these times.

 

Frank Godiva

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Wideglyd

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If your happy with it, that’s all that matters. It’s the player not the drums right?

Those came out in 2011 and replaced the 3007 line. The 3007 was 9 ply maple, the select force is 7 ply and the new AQ2 is also 7 ply Canadian maple and most likely the exact same shell as the Select Force it replaced.

These were not made by Mapex. These drums were designed in Germany and made in the KHS Tianjin, China. KHS also owns Mapex and manufactures Mapex in the same factory.

Here is an interview with KHM from Sonor in 2011 which sheds more light.

“JR - Sonor's manufacturing has globalized significantly in recent years. Do you feel that has been a positive thing for the high end consumer, or a detriment to the perception of the company?

KHM - In the mid 90's we have set the goal to raise our international presence and grow our business. This could only be achieved by addressing new consumer groups and look for new production locations. All products that we are manufacturing in China are developed, designed and engineered in the German headquarters. They are built on SONOR's Quality Standards. On top of that, all our made in Germany products are meeting the needs of the high end consumer more than ever. Today, I am glad to say that we have achieved our goals and we have worked our way into the top group of drum brands.

JR - How do you feel about the current product line? Even in the lower end there is a good coverage of options in shell materials and sizes. It also seems that Sonor has covered the entire spectrum of price points, and has really raised the bar on finish quality and the number of finish options. Do you feel that the current catalog represents Sonor's most diverse product line to date?

KHM - Yes, I would totally agree that the current catalog is by far the most diverse product line to date. We are reaching beginners to professionals. Every product line has its customer with specific needs and wishes and not only with the lower lines we are meeting exactly their perception. This is what makes the catalog so diverse in finishes, sizes, features etc. Furthermore, another very important fact is that SONOR is the only company in the industry to manufacture all types of percussion: Drums, Education, Latin and African Percussion as well as Marching instruments!

JR - With so much quality work going on in China, has it been difficult to make decisions on where to produce particular items? One may feel that items like the Giant Step pedals, and Artist series snare drums could be produced in China with a significant reduction in retail price with little discernible, if any change in quality. How does a decision to move production get made?

KHM - The products we are manufacturing in China are exactly adjusted to the production environment. As pointed out before we want to offer the right product for each of the consumer groups. However the SONOR brand stands for highest quality, innovation and German engineering. As in every industry there are high end consumers that exactly ask for these "features". In opposition to most of our competitors who build their high end products in Asia, we strongly believe that we can realize this demand here in Germany in the most optimal way.


JR - The Chinese made Phil Rudd Signature Snare Drum seemed to be well received on the dealer and consumer level. Do you feel that it helped change perspective of Chinese production in the minds of the consumer? Can we look forward to more snare drum projects with such an attractive price point?

KHM - Yes, there will be more projects, time will tell. This specific drum was well received because of the price performance ratio internationally. But I don't believe that only one product can change the basic perspective of Chinese Production of the consumer. Since the manufacturing standards and processes in China significantly changed in the last years I do believe that the basic perspective has changed as well on the consumer side, compared to about 20 years ago. When we made the production step in the 1990's with the Force series into China, it was important for us that the SONOR spirit carries on and consumers can rely on the product quality that they are accustomed to. People were much more critical these times.

Thank you Frank...awesome article and information. So true about the player not the drums. Thanks for the insight.
 

Elvis

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Wideglyd,

So when you posted that you bought your new drums from the Mapex factory, did they actually represent themselves in that way, or did they say they are KHS?

Elvis
 

Wideglyd

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I said that in error..actually KHS.
 

Elvis

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Thanks for clarifying that.
 


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