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  #1  
Old 11-09-2009, 08:19 PM
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ZDdrums ZDdrums is offline
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Default Electronic vs. Acoustic Questionnaire-- research paper

Hello to all those interested,

I am currently gathering information for a paper with a thesis of "Based on certain criteria such as recording preference, living space, and genre of application, an electronic drum set may be a great substitute for an acoustic drum set." I have to write this paper and also build an electronic drum set in order to graduate from high school. In this case, I am calling upon you, the brilliant members of the Drummerworld forum for help. There are two ways you can do this: 1. Take the easy way out and reply with a simple "electronic" or "acoustic" to show your preference between the two -or- 2. Do a little extra work and fill out the brief questionnaire which I have compiled especially for you, which you will find below. Regardless of which one you choose, any help will be greatly appreciated. Thanks a lot and wish me luck!

-Zac B.



1. What is your name?

2. How long have you been playing drums?

3. Please make a list of possible situations where you would prefer the use of an acoustic drum set. Consider genre of music, performance area/location, and recording application.

4. Please make a list of possible situations where you would prefer the use of an electronic drum set. Consider genre of music, performance area/location, and recording application.

5. Based on your answers to numbers 3 and 4, pick a situation from each list and give a brief explanation as to why you placed it in that list.

6. Please list any additional thoughts on the differences between electronic and acoustic drums below.

Last edited by ZDdrums; 11-10-2009 at 03:49 PM.
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  #2  
Old 11-09-2009, 11:14 PM
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Davo-London Davo-London is offline
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Default Re: Electronic vs. Acoustic Questionnaire-- research paper

I hope you are for real.

1. Davo London
2. 5 years
3. Acoustic for playing live at low volumes, this would be jazz or worship based music. Acoustic for recording CD published music.
4. Electronic for practising at home and for playing much louder gigs and for recording practice or backing tracks or for broadcast on the internet.
5. answered above.
6. I like them both. Having electronic kit at home considerably increases my opportunity to practice. Playing an e-kit has a lot of advantages, for recording midi, for playing along with other music, for the built in metronome etc. There are a lot of acoustic fascists around who will always criticise electronic drums and drummers. That is a shame.

Davo
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  #3  
Old 11-09-2009, 11:43 PM
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ZDdrums ZDdrums is offline
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Default Re: Electronic vs. Acoustic Questionnaire-- research paper

Yes I am 100% legit and thank you very much for the reply! Just one question for you Davo: Why electronic for louder music and acoustic for quieter music? I know you explained that you play jazz and gospel which would require a softer, real sound, but I feel like I would have answered the other way around with a preference of electronics for quieter music because of the volume control. Just bouncin' ideas...
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  #4  
Old 11-10-2009, 12:29 AM
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Default Re: Electronic vs. Acoustic Questionnaire-- research paper

Quote:
Originally Posted by ZDdrums View Post
1. What is your name?
Harry Conway

Quote:
Originally Posted by ZDdrums View Post
2. How long have you been playing drums?
Since 1966.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ZDdrums View Post
3. Please make a list of possible situations where you would prefer the use of an acoustic drum set. Consider genre of music, performance area/location, and recording application.
I run my acoustic kit when I'm doing my rock/blues ..... traditional drummer thang. Playing for the beer drinkers.....the peanut and pretzil eaters. The Camero, Pick-up, and Harley crowd.

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4. Please make a list of possible situations where you would prefer the use of and electronic drum set. Consider genre of music, performance area/location, and recording application.
I run my electronics when I'm doing art fairs. And gallery shows. Private parties for the cheese and wine crowd. A place where 1, 2, 3, 4 doesn't necessarily have to be a part of every song. Porsche, Lexus and Ducati crowd.
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5. Based on your answers to numbers 3 and 4, pick a situation from each list and give a brief explanation as to why you placed it in that list.
Acoustic drums for gigs at the strip clubs. Those hard working dancers "need" to hear the thunder of the 26" kick, locked into the Ampeg SVT. One dancer said "our music made her cervix tingle". Rock and roll, gotta love it.
Out came the electronics for a wonderful "private party" celebrating Andy Warhol's birthday.
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6. Please list any additional thoughts on the differences between electronic and acoustic drums below.
I treat acoustic and electric kits as 2 completely seperate instruments, for the most part. I do run a hybrid kit, however. When I do that, it "normally" consists of acoustic snare and real cymbals integrated into my e-kit. Also, I've been known to just place my SPD-S left of my hi-hat, and take advantage of all the nice little percussive goodies (100+ sounds) that you'd need a second roomspace for, if they were in an analog state.
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Old 11-10-2009, 01:46 AM
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Default Re: Electronic vs. Acoustic Questionnaire-- research paper

Thanks a lot Harry; I've been considering going Peart-style with my new electronics once my project is complete, but the idea of switching individual drums between the two kits and having two separate hybrids to play at the same time sounds somewhat more appealing.
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  #6  
Old 11-10-2009, 06:44 AM
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Default Re: Electronic vs. Acoustic Questionnaire-- research paper

1. What is your name? Ian

2. How long have you been playing drums? 20 years

3. Please make a list of possible situations where you would prefer the use of an acoustic drum set. Consider genre of music, performance area/location, and recording application.
Live, any music, any room, any situation.
Recording, if budget permits.

4. Please make a list of possible situations where you would prefer the use of and electronic drum set. Consider genre of music, performance area/location, and recording application.
Home practice.
Simple home recordings, (coming up with basic song ideas, quick demos)
Recording studio when time or money is an issue.

5. Based on your answers to numbers 3 and 4, pick a situation from each list and give a brief explanation as to why you placed it in that list.
Live is always acoustic. Acoustic drums don't suddenly freeze up, shut down, or come un-plugged. Also, e-drums don't move air, and can make you wonder if the band is just playing to a tape.
Studio, e-drums are so much easier. No need for mics, no need for mic pre-s, they are already somewhat compressed, plus you don't have any bleed issues in the microphones.
My trick these days is use electronics for the drums, but use acoustic cymbals.

6. Please list any additional thoughts on the differences between electronic and acoustic drums below.
I really look at them like two different instruments that can get you the same thing. They require (in my humble opinion) a different touch when playing them. On an acoustic drum, the number of volume differences between your softest hit and loudest hit is almost infinite, with e-drums, no matter what, you are limited to 128 volume levels. Thankfully, the average listener isn't going to notice 128 volume levels, but as a player, it is noticeable.
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Old 11-10-2009, 08:46 AM
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Skulmoski Skulmoski is offline
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Default Re: Electronic vs. Acoustic Questionnaire-- research paper

I sent you a PM. Good luck with your studies and research project.

I hope your achieve a healthy response from this community.

GJS
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  #8  
Old 11-10-2009, 03:53 PM
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ZDdrums ZDdrums is offline
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Default Re: Electronic vs. Acoustic Questionnaire-- research paper

Ian, if you're comfortable with sharing your last name (or making one up) it will be easier to cite you as a source. Greg, it's going to be really great to have a doctor with 43 years of experience as a source for my paper. Thank you both for your responses!
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  #9  
Old 11-10-2009, 04:49 PM
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Default Re: Electronic vs. Acoustic Questionnaire-- research paper

1. What is your name?

Duncan Taylor

2. How long have you been playing drums?

Seven Years

3. Please make a list of possible situations where you would prefer the use of an acoustic drum set. Consider genre of music, performance area/location, and recording application.

Live recording and studio recording when logistically possible. This speaks for the vast majority of musical genres in which I might be playing a kit.

4. Please make a list of possible situations where you would prefer the use of an electronic drum set. Consider genre of music, performance area/location, and recording application.

Situations whereby an acoustic kit is not available logistically or for space reasons. I frequently sequence rhythm parts using electronic samples and occasionally play a 'live' electronic kit to achieve this. I also use software to sequence, eg. Max/MSP which I use to sequence parts without a physical kit.

5. Based on your answers to numbers 3 and 4, pick a situation from each list and give a brief explanation as to why you placed it in that list.

Electronic kits are useful in situations whereby the recording of an acoustic kit is impossible, or difficult, due to spatial concerns and time allowances. The use of drum sample libraries in recording studios linked to electronic kits is increasingly being used and this method replicates acoustic drums very well indeed. I do tend to prefer to record acoustic kits when possible, however. In situations where natural sounds are not desired, using an electronic kit is certainly a good option.

6. Please list any additional thoughts on the differences between electronic and acoustic drums below.

As of the last few years, the proliferation of electronic kits has become more and more of a staple in modern studios. This is as a result of significant improvements in the technology and specifically the software. Electronic kits do not substitute the 'feeling' of an acoustic kit and as such can be hard to nuance in quite the same way as an acoustic kit, particularly in acoustic musical situations (eg. acoustic Jazz) although in many other genres of music where these nuances are not so important, electronic kits are certainly useful.

Personally I prefer to use acoustic kits where possible, but I am certainly not adverse to using electronic kits if the situation calls for it.
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  #10  
Old 11-10-2009, 06:18 PM
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ZDdrums ZDdrums is offline
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Default Re: Electronic vs. Acoustic Questionnaire-- research paper

Thanks very much Duncan. I am thoroughly pleased with everyone's responses thus far, but every bit helps. Keep it coming!
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  #11  
Old 11-10-2009, 07:54 PM
MadJazz MadJazz is offline
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Default Re: Electronic vs. Acoustic Questionnaire-- research paper

Electronic is great for practice and basic recording. I've been playing these for five years and twice as long on a-drums.

Acoustic offers more sensitivity and is potentially a better tool. Potentially, because if you don't have a proper room and can't tune it well, or if you buy crappy gear, it will be worse than a basic set of e-drums. Dimensions also play a role. E-drums, being so small, are easier to get around the kit with less effort. That, the volume control and EQ-ed studio tone make the treshold for learning lower. Once I can do it on e-drums, I can more easily learn it on a-drums. That way I learnt a lot more playing e-drums than a-drums.

Let's say I practice on e-drums and apply what I've learnt to a-drums afterwards. Both have their applications but e-drums are preferred wherever volume is a concern.
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  #12  
Old 11-10-2009, 11:32 PM
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ZDdrums ZDdrums is offline
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Default Re: Electronic vs. Acoustic Questionnaire-- research paper

Thanks MadJazz. Any interest in being cited? PM your name
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  #13  
Old 11-10-2009, 11:57 PM
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Default Re: Electronic vs. Acoustic Questionnaire-- research paper

1. Ben
2. about 2 and a half years
3.Any live gig. Acoustic drum sets allow me to be more expressive and just seem "right" for a loud rockin gig. or a quiet one for that matter.
4.I really want an e-kit for practicing, plus its a breeze to record.
5.I just said that
6.I think an acoustic kit with some pads or an spd-s is the perfect kit, a little best of both worlds action.
Good luck and what class are u in that requires this?
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Old 11-11-2009, 05:46 PM
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Default Re: Electronic vs. Acoustic Questionnaire-- research paper

Thanks bamdrummer. And it's not for a class, every senior from my high school has to complete a senior exit project to graduate.
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Old 11-16-2009, 01:44 AM
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Default Re: Electronic vs. Acoustic Questionnaire-- research paper

1. What is your name?
Andrew Todd

2. How long have you been playing drums?
Eleven years.

3. Please make a list of possible situations where you would prefer the use of an acoustic drum set. Consider genre of music, performance area/location, and recording application.

General gigging.
Recording with a producer/engineer in a commercial studio.
Any style of music really.

4. Please make a list of possible situations where you would prefer the use of an electronic drum set. Consider genre of music, performance area/location, and recording application.

Electronic music.
Home practice.
Home recording.
Kick trigger for live metal.

5. Based on your answers to numbers 3 and 4, pick a situation from each list and give a brief explanation as to why you placed it in that list.

I use an acoustic kit for gigs where possible. I trust my acoustic kit more than my electronic kit for use at gigs, mainly because of the possible breakages and the fact that the electronic kit would be harder to 'fix'. I also mainly run my electronic kit using software, and as I don't have a standalone hard drive setup, it would mean having to take my laptop with me.
I have an acoustic 'workhorse', which I know will be fine night after night on the road.

That said.. I do also use my electronic kit live - albeit in a less traditional setting. I play some dubstep/drum and bass shows, and having an electronic kit is just great for these styles of music. I also use an SPD-S and have my laptop/midi controller setup for my live 'DJ' show (while drumming) - the electronic drums integrate well with this setup. Being able to switch the 'drum map' from drum kit to percussion at the touch of a button is invaluable. Having the metronome 'built in' to play along to live is also useful.

6. Please list any additional thoughts on the differences between electronic and acoustic drums below.

I find that electronic drums are really quite good at the moment, especially when used with software. They're great for practicing, and they're great for recording with a hybrid setup too. For example at home I record drums with my electronic kit - and record the cymbals with a pair of c414s and an MK-012. Buying microphones to record my acoustic drum set would have been more expensive, and would likely produce inferior results (I'm not going to pretend to be a great engineer).

I'd say that the worst thing about an electronic kit is the cymbal feel/sound, but that may improve as the number of samples and software evolves over time (as well as the cymbal construction).
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Old 11-16-2009, 02:33 AM
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Default Re: Electronic vs. Acoustic Questionnaire-- research paper

1. What is your name? Jon

2. How long have you been playing drums? 6 1/2 years

3. Please make a list of possible situations where you would prefer the use of an acoustic drum set. Consider genre of music, performance area/location, and recording application.

Band practices
Gigging
Practicing in my own home
Recording


4. Please make a list of possible situations where you would prefer the use of an electronic drum set. Consider genre of music, performance area/location, and recording application.

Recording
Practicing in an apartment or other public living accommodation


5. Based on your answers to numbers 3 and 4, pick a situation from each list and give a brief explanation as to why you placed it in that list.

(3.) Gigging -For obvious reasons, mic'd acoustic kits sound much better live than amplified electronic kits

(4.) Practicing in an apartment or other or other public living accommodation - So as not to disturb the neighbors, or other people living in that space (college dorms, etc.)


6. Please list any additional thoughts on the differences between electronic and acoustic drums below.

Constantly switching from acoustic to electronic can be a little confusing; especially when playing mesh headed pads on the electronics, which feel too bouncy, and this can eventually mess with your playing.

Hope that helps, good luck!
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Old 11-18-2009, 08:28 PM
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ZDdrums ZDdrums is offline
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Default Re: Electronic vs. Acoustic Questionnaire-- research paper

Thanks for all the input so far! If I could get some more ideas specifically on recording both electronic and acoustic drums that would be great. Ill need your first and last name so I can cite you as a source, or you can be creative and make up a name if you want.
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  #18  
Old 11-20-2009, 11:42 PM
atomcorr2 atomcorr2 is offline
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Default Re: Electronic vs. Acoustic Questionnaire-- research paper

[quote=ZDdrums;630454]Hello to all those interested,

I am currently gathering information for a paper with a thesis of "Based on certain criteria such as recording preference, living space, and genre of application, an electronic drum set may be a great substitute for an acoustic drum set." I have to write this paper and also build an electronic drum set in order to graduate from high school. In this case, I am calling upon you, the brilliant members of the Drummerworld forum for help. There are two ways you can do this: 1. Take the easy way out and reply with a simple "electronic" or "acoustic" to show your preference between the two -or- 2. Do a little extra work and fill out the brief questionnaire which I have compiled especially for you, which you will find below. Regardless of which one you choose, any help will be greatly appreciated. Thanks a lot and wish me luck!

-Zac B.



1. What is your name?Tom

2. How long have you been playing drums? since 1965

3. Please make a list of possible situations where you would prefer the use of an acoustic drum set. Consider genre of music, performance area/location, and recording application.

i use an acoustic kit 100% of the time when i play live with the band, but i also use 2 yamaha pads with my kit, mostly for effects,(handclaps,cowbell ect.)

4. Please make a list of possible situations where you would prefer the use of an electronic drum set. Consider genre of music, performance area/location, and recording application.

when the band reherses ,i always use electronics.only because my drums get packed up and are in the truck ,so it is much easier to just play the elec. than to unload the truck

5. Based on your answers to numbers 3 and 4, pick a situation from each list and give a brief explanation as to why you placed it in that list.



6. Please list any additional thoughts on the differences between electronic and acoustic drums below.[/QUOT

it my opinion, elec. drums will never take the place of acoustic's ... the new electronics are really great ,and very handy, and there will always be a place for them. but. i just dont feel right sitting behind a set of them .

but i really like the mix of both elec. and acoustic .
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Old 11-21-2009, 02:24 AM
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Default Re: Electronic vs. Acoustic Questionnaire-- research paper

1. What is your name? Jon Knutson

2. How long have you been playing drums? 37 years

3. Please make a list of possible situations where you would prefer the use of an acoustic drum set. Consider genre of music, performance area/location, and recording application. In all live situations, and most true recording situations.

4. Please make a list of possible situations where you would prefer the use of an electronic drum set. Consider genre of music, performance area/location, and recording application. For low volume/private practice.

5. Based on your answers to numbers 3 and 4, pick a situation from each list and give a brief explanation as to why you placed it in that list. Although the state of the art has advanced considerably in recent years, I have never played an electronic kit that affords the same sensitivity, responsiveness and feel as an acoustic kit. There is literally an endless library of sounds/samples to choose from when using an electronic kit, and in some limited recording situations, they may work as well or better than a properly tuned acoustic kit, but they do not yet replicate the versatility and feel of an acoustic kit.

6. Please list any additional thoughts on the differences between electronic and acoustic drums below. The first electronic kit I owned/played was the Simmons SDS-5, pretty much the pioneer in electronic percussion, back in 1982(?). It was a unique instrument, and made me stand out from my peers in the local music community, but I only played it for about a year, then weht back to acoustic kits, for the reasons already mentioned.
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  #20  
Old 11-23-2009, 09:01 PM
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Default Re: Electronic vs. Acoustic Questionnaire-- research paper

I'm hoping this paper will gain credibility based on the large amount direct input from actual drummers. Thanks a lot you guys!
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