Originally Posted by BassDriver
Sleishman and Spirit Drums interest me for the uniqueness...
...but since I own a Tama Superstar I would say that Tama has great quality for price, hardware is really solid and if I had the time and money I could make my set sound pro.
Boutique drums don't cost any more than top-of-the-line mass produced drums. They just don't have the marketing budget and they have less overhead.
I have played Tamas and I agree, they are fine drums. Really, at their different price points, all the major manufacturers are comparable. They have to be, because they're competing with each other.
Boutique makers aren't competing with anyone so they can pursue a truly different method, material or creative/artistic approach. Kind of like the difference between a covers vs. originals band.