How would you compromise, and why?

Michaelj

Member
This is a pretty random thread, but curious on people's opinions. In a hypothetical scenario where you could only play one brand of drums or cymbals, how would you decide? (And since this is entirely hypothetical, let's assume cost is no barrier, the only requirement is that you stick to a single brand). There's no purpose to this, and it's entirely hypothetical, but I'm interested in what your must-haves might be. Maybe it's the snare, maybe it's the pedal, which drives the decision to switch entirely (or maybe there's an element about a brand which would completely rule it out for you).

I got pulled down this train of thought and found it quite challenging. For example, I have Sonor drums, Ludwig snares, mostly yamaha and tama hardware. But if I had to have only one brand, it might well end up being Tama or Yamaha, for the IMO best overall quality of hardware and shells. Or maybe I'd decide that I couldn't give up Ludwig snares, and so make the switch to all ludwig. So there's the option of 1) a complete compromise to get the best result, or 2) that one essential element guiding the outcome.

Interested in how other people would approach this.
 

bud7h4

Silver Member
I would go with Tama drums and hardware.
The simple reason is because I'm a big fan of their Starclassic maple drums, Speed Cobra pedals and HH stand.
 

Bo Eder

Platinum Member
I'll play - only because as I look back on my career, I've always had a mish-mash of stuff because some companies do certain things better than others. Now, there are a number of companies that do everything good, and for me, that would be Pearl. Everything they make works, and now since I've invested in the extra parts, I would just be switching out to other companies that do everything great with no real improvement, so I might as well stay where I'm at for now. But I agree, Yamaha and Tama both do everything well. DW does good, but it's over engineered and heavy. When I played Ludwig, I always had Yamaha hardware, same with Gretsch. So by logical deduction, Pearl wins out.
 

GruntersDad

Administrator - Mayor
Staff member
I would do Ludwig because IMHO they do drums well, and hardware well also. I like Gretsch drums but there hardware lacks me thinks.
 

bermuda

Drummerworld Pro Drummer - Administrator
Staff member
Happily, "one brand" often includes various sounds, so it's not a difficult decision.

For cymbals, it's Sabian for me. They offer several lines with several sounds, even touching briefly on Paiste's classic sound with the APX series.

For drums, it's Ludwig for me. Snare-wise, I have everything I need in their metal and wood shelled drums. Kick and tom-wise, Ludwig offers different wood and edge combinations, and for a warmer punch, Vistalite.

Hardware is a different animal, and it would be difficult for me to select just one brand for pedals, stands, etc. But since hardware doesn't (intentionally) make a sound, I'm not sure it fits your question. Also, drummers often have different hardware needs depending on the gig at hand. In my case, I use older Ludwig stands, new Atlas pedal, (and the new Yamaha hat for my local gigs for weight and size considerations. But on tour, I use Ludwig pedals, a Pearl rack, and Gibraltar arms and rack legs. I don't like the all-Pearl or all-Gibraltar rack solutions, and Ludwig doesn't make a rack, so that was never an option for my tour kit.

With regard to the question, I don't feel that I am making a compromise with my single drum or cymbal brand choices, but I guess I am with hardware.

Bermuda
 
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Michaelj

Member
Hardware is a different animal, and it would be difficult for me to select just one brand for pedals, stands, etc. But since hardware doesn't (intentionally) make a sound, I'm not sure it fits your question.
Bermuda, you're cheating ;)

In seriousness though, that's an interesting way to break it down (i.e. makes a sound, or not). I think that including hardware is what makes it much more difficult, though!

If we take it a step further, and include drum throne as part of hardware (which I thought about doing in my original post) that definitely puts Tama over the top for me.
 

Darth Vater

Senior Member
Sonor drums/snares. I'll put up with their high quality but quirky hardware. Sabian Cymbals. Pretty much what I'm using now.
 

bermuda

Drummerworld Pro Drummer - Administrator
Staff member
In seriousness though, that's an interesting way to break it down (i.e. makes a sound, or not). I think that including hardware is what makes it much more difficult, though!
And to take it further, hardware can be split into support (stands) vs tactile (pedals & throne) in terms of our interaction with it. In the tactile department, I am perfectly happy with Ludwig. But support is difficult to find everything I like in one brand. I suppose Pearl comes closest by way of the square rack bars, mounts, and cymbal arms, but I'm not a fan of the horizontal feet (I swapped each out for straight Gibraltar poles for a less-cluttered footprint and more compact storage.)

Bermuda
 

cbphoto

Gold Member
When I sold my darkroom gear in 1994, I had enough cash to buy any cymbals I wanted. I went to my shop and played cymbals while blindfolded. I left with a mix of Paiste sound formula & Signature pies. The 18” Fast Crash still melts me.

About ten years later, Some hardware failed me. I went to my local drum shop and asked who makes reliable hardware with good availability (for replacement parts). They said Tama, so I bought a Starclassic bubinga kit. It helped that I fell in love with the strength of the bass drum sound.

Tama + Paiste. It’s been that way since.
 

Winston_Wolf

Platinum Member
Joining hardware with drum brand is what makes this hard, for sure.

For the drums themselves, Ludwig is an easy choice. I really like Pearl pedals and Yamaha stands, but not enough to sway me away from Ludwig.

Cymbals are the tricky one, but in the end I think I'm going to go with Paiste. I'm drawn to the range of sounds they make, and they're the only brand that makes great cymbals out of three different alloys, which contributes to that wide range. My heart really wanted me to choose Sabian, but I don't feel as connected to them as I once did.

I know heads and sticks weren't originally a part of this exercise, but I have no hesitation in choosing Aquarian and Vater. I put Remo no-collar clear Ambassadors on the bottom of all of my snare drums, and I really like the Vintage Emperor heads as well, but Aquarian heads have been consistently great for me. I love the tone, the durability, and range of models. I've tried a lot of sticks, but I always keep coming back to Vater. They feel great and seem to outlast any other brand for me.
 

larryace

"Uncle Larry"
I'm surprised no one mentioned Yamaha.

I'm not playing, just commenting.

OK I'm playing now. If I had to pick...I'd take Yamaha, then Tama, then Pearl.
 

Tamaefx

Silver Member
I always played Tama hardware, even for thrones, the quality is really great so I'll stick with it. Cymbals, i almost only played Sabian, except some breakage in my early days, they never failed me.
For the drum kit, since Premier is almost dead, and despite the fact I used to own several Tamas ; I'll would put on my wish list British Drums Company, because they're so stylish :D ! - I must confess I never saw / heard them in the real life.
 

paradiddle pete

Platinum Member
I would do Ludwig because IMHO they do drums well, and hardware well also. I like Gretsch drums but there hardware lacks me thinks.
funny i think Ludwig shells are good but everything else is sadly lacking, Gretsch overall eats them alive.. this is not my decision just a comment based on experience. i don't mean hardware , i mean the shells , lugs, hoops etc.
 
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Andy

Administrator
Staff member
I'm surprised no one mentioned Yamaha.
Yamaha hardware all the way with me, including pedal & throne. I've used Yamaha hardware for longer than I can remember, & still have a perfectly serviceable + well used hihat stand from 82. On the odd occasion I've bought other pieces of hardware, it's never been as good, or as reliable. It's absolutely not a brand loyalty thing, it's a positive experience thing.

As for drums, I have enough of a certain brand to deal with anything I'm ever likely to need, and last me until I'm in a box.

Cymbals - all Amedia. Played them for many years now. For my needs, sonically superior to pretty much anything else I've tried, never had an issue, & across the 3 "sets" + ad ons I own, cover a really wide landscape.
 

MrInsanePolack

Platinum Member
This is easy. I've been playing Pearl for like 26-27 years now. Totally happy with their drums, pedals, and hardware. No reason to change that now.

Cymbals are a different story. I have no preference for brand at all, sound is more important. All my cymbals, minus a Wuhan China are all at least 20 years old. That being said, I'd choose old cymbals! Hope that counts.
 

KEEF

Senior Member
I currently play Tama and Sabian with a mish mash of hardware, but money no object - shells and hardware from the same manufacturer, probably means Yamaha for me. And Paiste cymbals.
 

mikyok

Platinum Member
Mapex for me, so happy with the Saturns. The Black Panther equinox snare is tempting me.

I use all Zildjians but I realy want a full set of Amedia Vintage Series, I have a 20" Vintage series crash that is the best cymbal I've ever owned.

Hardware DW as long as I can have a strap drive 5000 pedal all is well with the world!
 

GetAgrippa

Platinum Member
Why do I have to compromise? Ok I'll roll the bones. I'd pick Pearl cause I like to throw pearls before swine.
 

Darth Vater

Senior Member
Yamaha hardware all the way with me, including pedal & throne. I've used Yamaha hardware for longer than I can remember, & still have a perfectly serviceable + well used hihat stand from 82. On the odd occasion I've bought other pieces of hardware, it's never been as good, or as reliable. It's absolutely not a brand loyalty thing, it's a positive experience thing.

As for drums, I have enough of a certain brand to deal with anything I'm ever likely to need, and last me until I'm in a box.

Cymbals - all Amedia. Played them for many years now. For my needs, sonically superior to pretty much anything else I've tried, never had an issue, & across the 3 "sets" + ad ons I own, cover a really wide landscape.
Drums and hardware have to come from the same manufacturer. Choose ! ;)
 

wildbill

Platinum Member
.... In a hypothetical scenario where you could only play one brand of drums or cymbals, how would you decide? ..
If how I decided was based on practicality and availability, it would be Yamaha.

If how I decided was based on gut reaction and pride of ownership, it would be Ludwig.

In either case, cymbals would be Zildjian. If those weren't available for some reason, it would be Sabian.

As far as hardware goes, I've mostly had Yamaha with no major complaints.
 
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