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Thoughts on DW drums!

Drummer69BB

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Very good at low pitched, attack heavy, big and boomy drum sound. But we all don't want to sound like Bonham and that's pretty much how every DW tunes up (or down).

They do produce a very high quality, LOW PITCHED fundamental that is resonant, clear, powerful and projecting. I think this is why they are so popular.

Downside? Nowhere near the sensitivity, sustain, depth of resonance and overall musicality of an instrument such as a Sonor Prolite, SQ2, or Tama Starclassic Maple (my choice).

It's really a matter of sound. Most people on these forums are younger kids that dig hard rock. They're great for that. But that's it.
 

scooter540

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I always lusted for a DW Collectors series kit and this year finally splurged on a purplecore kit with matching snare. Within 3 months I’d sold it.

It certainly did the low thud well but I found it to have a limited tuning range. I could never dial in the toms and found the floor in particular warbly and untaimable. The snare had a great crack but poor sensitivity and feel. The kick was a cannon, best part of the kit by a mile. Too bad it weighed a metric tonne and was an absolute pain to lug around.

Set up in a studio not being moved around and mic’d up it would be a great recording kit for rock but for gigging it didn’t fit the bill.
 

D. B. Cooper

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I think DW raised the bar on finishes and manufacture, and as a result the other companies had to up their game. I was able to tour the factory and their commitment to quality and innovation was evident. Good time to be a drummer.

Yeah that makes sense. Seems like yamaha and their piano, drum and other finishes have also helped raise the bar. I've never owned Yamaha or DW complete sets, but their finishes have always looked nice.
 

Steech

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Very good at low pitched, attack heavy, big and boomy drum sound. But we all don't want to sound like Bonham and that's pretty much how every DW tunes up (or down).

They do produce a very high quality, LOW PITCHED fundamental that is resonant, clear, powerful and projecting. I think this is why they are so popular.

Downside? Nowhere near the sensitivity, sustain, depth of resonance and overall musicality of an instrument such as a Sonor Prolite, SQ2, or Tama Starclassic Maple (my choice).

It's really a matter of sound. Most people on these forums are younger kids that dig hard rock. They're great for that. But that's it.
Well said.
 

Drummer69BB

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I feel like DW has a very specific sound...to me, it's tubby with like a "plastic" attack. The midrange seems sucked out. Probably makes for a good mic'd tone as if its pre-Eq'd. I also think they are quite loud and bombastic. I do like some of their snares though...also loud but with a huge crack.
The original 6 ply rack tom and 7 ply floor and bass drum were better than the current SSC. Sorry John I think you had it right the first time.
 
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Very good at low pitched, attack heavy, big and boomy drum sound. But we all don't want to sound like Bonham and that's pretty much how every DW tunes up (or down).

They do produce a very high quality, LOW PITCHED fundamental that is resonant, clear, powerful and projecting. I think this is why they are so popular.

Downside? Nowhere near the sensitivity, sustain, depth of resonance and overall musicality of an instrument such as a Sonor Prolite, SQ2, or Tama Starclassic Maple (my choice).

It's really a matter of sound. Most people on these forums are younger kids that dig hard rock. They're great for that. But that's it.
That does depend on the series/wood selection you choose.

For regular maple I agree, this is mostly the case.
 

JimmyM

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Obviously they’re not for everyone but I have played with many drummers who use DW and they always sounded great to me no matter how they were tuned.
 

DrummBumm89

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People hate them because it's en vogue to. They are the Yankees of the drum world.
I never heard as many people complain about a lug versus any other brands.
There's a reason they have the support and name they do. There's also a reason it's popular in studios. Their hardware innovation, finishes and specialized shells have pushed other brands to step up their game. Their gloss finishes are better quality than anyone of the other majors and I'll stand by that.
For as many people who are Pro-USA I don't think it gets mentioned enough.
Handling 100's of their new drums, I never encountered had a jacked edge, scratched/dirty hardware, bubbling/hazy/bad QC'd wrap, or orange peeled finishes.
I can't say that about almost any other (major) brand, sans Sonor. Their US distribution was rough when I was dealing with them so I didn't deal with them much.
 

Rhyma Hop

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Paint option finishes are way better than all others IMO. but the quality of the lacquer is not . . Shell options are very cool but the difference in sound of the hybrid shells combined with mahogany is not mind blowing but this hybrid shell I think definitely sounds better than their maple with rings. . I would still own another but only because i know where to get a much heavier discount.
 

Drummer69BB

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I have never played a collector's birch kit. I thought it was their HVLT shell? Can you tune the birch shell up higher? I love the sound of the drums it's just that the SSC kits are too low pitched for my taste.
 

5 Style

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If I were the market for a new kit and found some DWs in the sizes and finish that I like that was a screaming deal, I would consider them. If they were the same or more $ than others that I was looking at though I would probably skip them. I think that they sound fine and though I haven't heard them, the thinner more resonant jazz series, I might like even better... but there's something about the vibe that I just don't like. I'll admit that it's kind of an irrational prejudice, but to me they've become so ubiquitous as to become kind of generic and though I'm of the belief that pretty much all of the major manufactures have lines of drums that will work for just about any kind of sound that you want, DW seems to be most common in the really commercial, "Hollywood" spaces that I care least about. If money is no object and I get to choose, if I were buying a contemporary, high end mass produced kit I would probably be looking at Yamaha, Ludwig, Sonor (as long as it's a line without that crazy overbuilt hardware!) or Canopus...

DW hardware is a different story, it's some of the best. I honestly haven't compared it to a lot of the other stuff out there, but I've used my DW high hat stand for decades (since the 90s) and it's held up great and the action is fantastic. It seems like some of their stuff is rather ridiculously overbuilt, but that's true for certain lines of lots of other makes and I know that DW has lighter lines as well.
 
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katulu

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People hate them because it's en vogue to. They are the Yankees of the drum world.
I never heard as many people complain about a lug versus any other brands.
There's a reason they have the support and name they do. There's also a reason it's popular in studios. Their hardware innovation, finishes and specialized shells have pushed other brands to step up their game. Their gloss finishes are better quality than anyone of the other majors and I'll stand by that.
For as many people who are Pro-USA I don't think it gets mentioned enough.
Handling 100's of their new drums, I never encountered had a jacked edge, scratched/dirty hardware, bubbling/hazy/bad QC'd wrap, or orange peeled finishes.
I can't say that about almost any other (major) brand, sans Sonor. Their US distribution was rough when I was dealing with them so I didn't deal with them much.

I hate to say it, but I hate the lugs too. I only have a DW 14x8 Purpleheart snare, and while like the snare, I would not purchase another DW drum just because of those lugs.
 

DrummBumm89

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I hate to say it, but I hate the lugs too. I only have a DW 14x8 Purpleheart snare, and while like the snare, I would not purchase another DW drum just because of those lugs.
This is more of a learning question for me. I'm tempted to start a thread asking people what lugs they like that:
1) Aren't Generic looking. You can tell a DW apart by their lugs.
2) Use One type of lug for the whole company.
Performance and Design are just smaller versions of the same thing. Could argue they've used BR Slingly lug kits and Tube Lugs if we wanted to be pedantic, but I'd argue 90% are the same lug.

Ludwig's got a handful of versions. Yamaha, Sonor, Pearl, Mapex (different eras for sure). Pearl blatantly stole a design from a small company, I remember that topic of discussion years back. DW getting the rights to the camco lug is different imo.Gretsch has many imitators.

Does any other company (that isn't being used on other kits ie Beavertails) have a lug that is that distinguishable?
 

EssKayKay

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I hate to say it, but I hate the lugs too. I only have a DW 14x8 Purpleheart snare, and while like the snare, I would not purchase another DW drum just because of those lugs.
I'm sure I'm quite alone on this one but I don't mind DW lugs actually kind of like them (even the smaller ones) and I'm a Gretsch guy. I like them better than Ludwig's.
 
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The only thing I dont like (next to my earlier mentioned laquer and chroming quality), is their current prices here in Europe. 2 to 3k for a kick only is just insane, let alone pricing out a full kit.

For that money I would rather buy an SQ2.

With that being said, my old Maple Mahogany was pure magic, and exactly what was being said about sounding different than a regular maple shell. Biggest loss ever I have to say.

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Rivot

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I'm going to be very unpopular on this one but who cares hate everything about them there lugs size what were they thinking way over priced drums that ain't worth it please no nasty replies thats my opinion on everyone to there own.
 

Ryneaux

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Mmmm, think I’ll have me another tall glass of the DW kool aid. These overpriced, overhyped, unicorn tear having, pieces of poo have been serving me well out in the field. Setting them up exactly how everyone here hates ‘em, tuned extra low and muffled. Hideous to look at, sounds like wet cardboard, cost way too much, but for some reason I dig ‘em.

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No.15

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I don't gig or make money with my drums and have very little experience playing the different brands. I do however like nice stuff and for me I pass over DW every time because of the lugs. The aesthetic just does not work for me and great options otherwise abound. Haven't read the whole thread yet but I am sure it has been brought up and flogged to death :) If I made money with drums and they had the sound I needed I would look past them.

That being said one of my kits would probably be called hideous green by some, and the other is a beautiful natural maple I don't think anyone would argue about. :)
 


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