Yamaha Recording Custom vs Stage Custom Birch?

Tornado

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Density/ Quality of Density/
Sound Character/ Sound Sustain and Drop off/
Cheap Birch and an Expensive Birch/
I simply don't believe any of these sound characteristics are related to the grade of birch used after it's been glued and pressed to hell and back in a high pressure shell mold.

But you would certainly use the highest quality wood if you're spending the time and money to have top notch craftsmanship, finishing, and hardware. You're creating a premium product.
 

hector48

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The current Recording Custom is probably the nicest drum shell I've ever seen.
Very clean cut, and no flaws anywhere.
A very nice drum if you have the money.
I consider them a piece of woodworking art.

The Stage custom will have some flaws.
For instance, some of the plies on the bass drum I received were slightly separated, and it didn't look like shipping damage.

Now, if you're looking for a gigging kit, where it will get some travel abuse, and be running thru some crappy PA, then I'd go with a less expensive kit. Again, Pearl Session Studio Select is a great birch option (even though it's not 100% birch).
 

halldorl

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The Stage Customs use the same Birch that was in the original recording customs from the 80’s. The newest version of RC’s use North American Birch.
I’m afraid this is not correct. Japanese RC’s were made of Japanese Hokkaido Birch. The SC’s have been outsourced over the years and made by a contractor in China, not by Yamaha. Not the same Birch. The reason the MIC RC’s are no longer made from Hokkaido Birch is it was too expensive to export the Japanese Birch to China.

Maybe Drumnhands (Jim Haler) can shed a light on this.
 

Ptrick

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I’m afraid this is not correct. Japanese RC’s were made of Japanese Hokkaido Birch. The SC’s have been outsourced over the years and made by a contractor in China, not by Yamaha. Not the same Birch. The reason the MIC RC’s are no longer made from Hokkaido Birch is it was too expensive to export the Japanese Birch to China.

Maybe Drumnhands (Jim Haler) can shed a light on this.
Interesting. I think I heard it in the DCP video.
 

Iristone

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I always thought there can be a huge difference between birch and birch... The vintage Premier drums made of European birch always have a slappy attack to me, which I haven't found in RC's (although my most direct reference was Moon vs Kenney era The Who, could be the micing technique Moon always insisted). If the SC has more of this slappy attack it's a good thing in my book. ;-)
 

RedeyeSPR

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With expensive drums the qaulity of the finish, chroming etc. all contribute to the price. It's maybe similar to cars: a faster car also has nicer seats etc.; the price difference reflects more than one aspect.
That's why I like upper-intermediate drums that maybe cut costs in some areas but not in sound. Often, those lines dimish sales of the real high-end lines from the same company.

edit: birch can have a very nice, pronounced grain pattern. For example, I like the look of some older Pearl lines with satin natural birch outer ply.
I think around $1500 (or maybe 1200?) drums stop sounding much better and you are then paying for finish, hardware, and other non-sound stuff.
 

RedeyeSPR

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Yep, and sometimes we just want something...new. Maybe I'll just get another Stage Custom in a different color!
You could always fill out your selection in the finish you have. I bought 10/12/16/22 as a set then added a 14 floor, 18 kick, and the wood snare (which is awesome btw). I'm thinking 13 and 18 floor, and maybe 20 kick before they discontinue the line. It's a really affordable kit to go full shell pack with and they are readily available.
 

Neal Pert

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I think around $1500 (or maybe 1200?) drums stop sounding much better and you are then paying for finish, hardware, and other non-sound stuff.
Well, there is that spot where you experience diminishing returns really, really hard-- every additional $100 yields you less and less additional quality. Not sure exactly where that is, but it is certainly in effect as soon as you switch from a satin finish to an exotic wood veneer on basically any kit.
 

Seb77

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I always thought there can be a huge difference between birch and birch... The vintage Premier drums made of European birch always have a slappy attack to me, which I haven't found in RC's (although my most direct reference was Moon vs Kenney era The Who, could be the micing technique Moon always insisted). If the SC has more of this slappy attack it's a good thing in my book. ;-)
That slappy attack - i hear that with RCs a lot, with other high-end birch as well. You can't tune or muffle it away, although it's less prominent with high tuning and coated heads. Plus, the fundamental tone has a special character i would characterize as "cool", the way the 80s were "cool".
That's why I am passionate about this birch wood thing: for years I worked a Pearl BRX to get a sound I had in mind - finally giving in, accepting it just had this certain sound gene/fingerprint I wasn't always that fond of - so I got a maple kit and found peace, now I have the choice.
 

drummingbulldog

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I always wanted an RC kit. Drooling over catalogs of Tama and Yamaha in the 80s before the interwebs. I was checking Craigslist one day in 2008 and saw an ad for Yamaha drums. $400 later I had purchased a 1985 RC kit. 10/12/13/14ft/22. I purchased my 8/16ft later. After I got them I realized they are fantastic & I gigged with them for years. Recording with them I realized they are kind of a one trick pony. Meaning the punchy short attack tone is really all that is really achievable. Even tuned wide open they are subdued. It's a great sound. The old Elektrik band Weckl or Carter Beauford sound. Everyone who plays them kinda has the same tone. It's a really great modern tone but you won't ever get a classic sound out them like maple or blended poplar/mahogany shelled drums. They tune great. They sound great too. LOUD. Super easy to set up/tune/play. Yamaha created a great instrument when they made the RC series. I think looking back now after owning RC's/Maple Customs/Stage Custom Birch I kinda know what to expect. That said, I would sell all of my yamaha gear for my old Jasper early 80s Gretsch kit. They did it all.
 

Old PIT Guy

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Fit and finish, which includes accoutrements, has never been inexpensive.
 

Shawn M

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Having just bought a new RC kit (8,10,12,16,22) I can say they are absolutely amazing. Build quality, finish, sound all exceeded my expectations.
I dont find them slappy or short sustained at all, great tone resonance and sustain.
 

Targalx

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The YESS mounts did a lot to change the sustain of the RCs. My 1990s RC with YESS tom mounts (and I use the Pearl suspension floor tom rubber feet) has plenty of sustain.

Quite different from the late 1980s RC bop kit (non-YESS) I played when I was in the college jazz combo and big band. That had more of the traditional Weckl/Colaiuta/Gadd quick attack we've come to expect from the earlier RC series.
 

Stretch Riedle

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Hi everyone. Has anyone had any hands on experience comparing the new Recording Customs
to the latest Stage Custom drums? I've seen the DCP comparison video, but I'm interested in how
they compare in person (character of sound, projection, etc.), as I usually play unmic'd. I've got
a small Stage Custom kit and wondering what the real sonic differences are. Thanks for the help.
Disclaimer: I didn't read all of the other posts first.
I have a 1987 Recording Custom. When I decided I wanted to add a few drums to it, I started looking at used prices for a 14x14 floor and a 15x18 bass drum. The prices were rather high. I'm cheap, so I decided to try adding brand new Stage Custom Birch drums instead, and found great deals on used ones. I can honestly say they fit in extremely well in sound and look. While I can't give you a verbal description between the 13x14 Stage Custom [they don't make 14x14] and the 16x16 Recording Custom I will say they sound perfect together.
Stretch
 

Ratamahoo

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Really appreciate all the responses, everyone. Lots of varying opinions, for sure.
 

Phildrummer

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@hector48


If you can't afford the RC, go Sakae til you can. You get an RC better than an RC, for a little more than half the price.

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