Tama S.L.P. vs Ayotte

Core Creek

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Hi folks. I’m thinking of replacing my old Mapex kit which I sold earlier this year with a nice wood hoop drum set. I always loved the look of the Ayotte kits and love the woody sound a wood hoop can provide.

There are two tempting kits out there: a Tama SLP kit, 22, 10, 12, 14, 16 for around $2000 (negotiable). This looks like a nice idea but I have no clue if the quality is there. But I also found a used Ayotte kit on reverb with the same sizes, minus the 14”. The Tama kit is brand new in the boxes and the Ayotte kit has some nicks here and there. I also have to drive 100 miles for the Ayotte kit and the SLP kit is shippable.

All things being equal, I’m not sure which makes more sense. I get an extra 14” floor with the Tama kit, and it’s in brand new condition. I also find that every ten years or so it seems drum companies modify kits with minor changes to make them sound more modern, and I dig that. But I think the Ayotte kit might hold its value more over time.... I stress might, because the kit has been up on reverb for over a year. I don’t plan to resell anytime soon but I tend to move kits when I get bored with a sound.

If it matters, I primarily plan to keep the kit in my recording studio as a recording kit, with perhaps an occasional gig - once or twice a year at most - I have other kits for gigging that I don’t mind banging up.

Thanks!
 

dtk

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Have you played a kit with two floor toms? I love the idea but I'm not sure I'd really use it.
WHich is more exciting to you? You mention loving the Ayotte...when not get what you love...as for nicks etc...if it was me...I'd probably nick the new kit even if it never left the house...now you won't have to worry about that....(with the Ayotte)...also the Ayotte is rarer...the only down side is if you need parts down the road.
 

Core Creek

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Yeah, not only am I not a fan of 14” floor toms, I usually suspend anything smaller than a 16”. Plus, looking at the S.L.P. kit, all the mounts are directly mounted to the shell - non isolated. I thought we’ve all gotten past that on higher end kits?? I also love that the Ayotte 16” is RIMS mounted.

I think I know which one is calling my name. But does anyone have experience with the S.L.P. kits?
 
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Neal Pert

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Those Tama kits are lovely. I haven't played this SLP in particular but the build quality I've seen on previous Tama SLP kits has been excellent.

Then again, there's Ayotte. They're just really incredible drums. I've owned a couple Ayottes and they among my favorites. I still kinda wish I'd kept my last one.

The thing these two kits you're looking at have in common, aside from the wood hoops, is that you should consider add-ons to be impossible. You won't be getting a matching wood-hooped 8" tom or 18" bass drum for the SLPs. But you also won't be getting add-ons or even parts for the Ayotte. You're getting what you're getting with both kits.
 

JDA

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is this in the 1/4 mile or oval track.
Isn't one current say modern and one extinct say vintage.
It pays to know what you're doing either way.
Probably the Ayotte will have more character and actual tone.
The SLP (slurp?) more bland generic.
Pays to know what you're doing. At the time at the moment,
 
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D. B. Cooper

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I thought SLP drums could be made of a number of materials? Which ones are you referring to?
 

Cauldronics

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Have you played a kit with two floor toms? I love the idea but I'm not sure I'd really use it.
WHich is more exciting to you? You mention loving the Ayotte...when not get what you love...as for nicks etc...if it was me...I'd probably nick the new kit even if it never left the house...now you won't have to worry about that....(with the Ayotte)...also the Ayotte is rarer...the only down side is if you need parts down the road.
The Ayotte might not be easy to resell if it's been on Reverb that long. The Tama would probably sell easier, and you mentioned selling a kit when you get bored with the sound.

That says get the Tama.
 

spaeth

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I have an Ayotte kit and it is one of those kits that has a very special aura about it. Some of it is sound, some is the hardware is gorgeous and well designed. The sound is fabulous. I looked on reverb and did not see the particular one you were looking at but it sounds like that kit is speaking to you more. I don't think you could go too wrong on it and a few scuffs just makes it easier to not stress about really using it. If they are beat and not priced accordingly that is another story. My Ayottes are one of the favorite kits I have owned. I won't say I will never sell, stopped saying that a while ago, but I will never regret having owned them.
 

Tilter

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Another nod for the Ayotte mojo.

I'd say that as long as any used Ayotte kit presents itself in solid working order, they're most certainly worth a hard look. They are outstanding instruments, and the fit and finish is absolutely top shelf.

If you decide on an Ayotte kit and happen to continue looking, don't get hung up on "Ray era" drums (pre-1999). I orderd my kit directly in 2004 and it was a masterpiece of form and function.
 

Core Creek

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Yeah, I’m leaning toward the Ayotte kit. I like the sizes and the suspended 16” Tom. I’m now rethinking my $ and may not get anything at the moment, but hopefully the Ayotte kit will still be there when the funds are available in another month or two.....
 

Houndog

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Man , I’ve been wanting an Ayotte Kit for years !!!

Tama , I’ll pass .
 

Beefsurgeon

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Be advised that there is a substantial difference in sound between the thin Ayotte wood hoops and the thicker, Yamaha-style hoops on the Tama.

Ayotte: Good amount of flex which facilitates a warm, dry sound.

Yamaha-style: Very rigid. Tunes up almost like a diecast hoop.
 

Stretsch

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I'll give a +1 on the Ayotte. Played one in University and the mojo was palatable. I will own one someday
 

musiqman

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The hoops of the Tama have a lower profile, which will the also less stick eating and add to a phatter sound when doing rimshots on the toms.

The Ayotte has a higher and thinner profile which will eat sticks quicker and don’t add to the rimshot phatness.

The rims add to the weight,(whilst a Ayotte shell is quite light)

Yes they open up the tone more, but live you won’t notice this (but you do notice the extra weight you have to take along every time).

I think the resale value is both less than higher end/more rare sets.

Also I have the feeling the Ayotte woodhoops don’t do enough to get a warmer sound opposed to the more mass Tama hoops.
 

MillerMav

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I would go Tama simply for the customer service aspect of things. Ayotte's customer service is hands down the worst on the planet. I had a 13" Ayotte snare made around 97 and used it for 20 years over 1000's of shows. Back in 2016/17 the batter hoop was starting to get a little wonky and I saw that they were making lower profile hoops as well which I liked. I contacted the new owner Jean and at first he was very helpful getting me an address to send the original hoops too so he could match the paint on the inlay. Once I sent them to him I didn't hear from him for 5 months, when I finally did get a hold of him (after many emails, phone calls, etc.) he sounded completely offended that I would suggest that he was ignoring me or no interested in providing me with new hoops (which I was paying for FYI). Finally after 3 more months of no communication, when I threatened to report him to Canada's version of the BBB I got my hoops back 1 year later. They were in the same box I shipped them in and had never been opened.

In my time trying to get back those hoops I actually got a hold of Ray Ayotte, with much less effort and spoke with him on the phone for a good hour. He explained to me that this Jean guy was a world class flake and was running the company into the ground. Because of all of this I promptly sold that snare within days of getting the hoops back. It's a shame because I always dreamed of owning a full Ayotte kit but they'll never get my business again.

Moral of the story? Go Tama all the way.
 

dirtysicks

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Tama. World class customer service, it’s brand new, thin Select maple shells with re-rings is one of my favorite shell configurations, more setup options, I loveThe new mounts, I’ve heard them sound great a few times with different heads and they are versatile. They take different heads very well to give a diversity of sounds.
 


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