Originally Posted by Gus
What do you think about the x-shell?. Really works?
I love them, but that is wildly misleading to just leave it at that. In as much as X-shells themselves are really nice, the real payoff comes from being able to state how you want your set to sound at a high level (figuratively) and then letting DW employ whatever construction techniques are necessary to achieve it. In other words, if you really want a set of drums that not only work and sound good together, but also have an exact pitch distribution, it is better to not spec the construction type at all and instead ask for how you want your kit to be.
For instance, I asked for my kit to hit the lowest notes possible for the sizes that I specced while also having a very even distribution. So, they started with the largest drums and used X-Shells. Then as they worked their way up to the smallest drums, they picked the best construction types that would keep the notes low while also keeping them from jumping too large or narrow a gap. As a result, my kit is monstrously deep and every adjacent tom pair is within a half step of a minor 4th apart, so tom transitions are ultra smooth.
I've purchased a lot of kits that have sounded great (like my DW birch kit), but there was always some element of surprise in terms of where the kit landed as a whole. You know, every drum sounds great, but maybe the 10" tom is higher than I wanted or the interval between the floors is a little narrow, etc... Not so with a hybrid.