Re: Different Sticks
The difference between cheap sticks and a set of Vic's is durability. I actually switched from pro-mark to Vic Firth because the Vic's just lasted longer. A 5A is a 5A, the specs aren't exactly a secret. Its consistency and durability that make the difference when buying sticks.
When I was gigging heavily (about 100 gigs a year) I would buy blocks of cheap sticks. I would go through a couple of sets a night, but at the price I was paying it didn't matter. Now that I am aweekend warrior again I have switched back to more expensive sticks to get the consistency I like.