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  #1  
Old 04-26-2012, 12:37 AM
PDPx7Drummer
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Default Single Ply Drum Head Combos / Brand Thoughts

Just got back into drumming about 8 months ago and am in the process of finding the best combo of heads to use. I've never had this opportunity to try different head combos as I was just a teen at the time when I had my first kit and couldn't afford to switch out heads every time I felt they were scuffed up enough to justify new heads. Actually I still can't TBH which is why I'm thinking of killing two or more birds with one coated stone lol! ;)

So far on my PDP X7 maple kit I have tried Emperors over Ambassadors and Pinstripes over Ambassadors. Currently I am thinking of going coated on my PDP's but I want to go single ply and tune loose for a deep quick, studio quality thud with very little sustain. My thoughts were to go with Ambassador X's on top AND bottom to give me that sound I might be looking for and here's why...

Not only will I get to see what a coated head will do on these thin FAST shell toms, I will get to see what two quality single ply heads, that are also coated, will do on these drums. I just think because of the double ply on top with these thins shells that I'm not quite getting the sound I THINK I am after or could get. Also both heads will be the same thickness 12 mil on top and bottom instead of 14 on top and 10 on the bottom as well as being a double ply on top.

So have any of you tried the Ambassador X? What do you think of the idea of going X's over X's? Anyone here a coated over coated fan? Would coated over coated be more so for certain genre's of music? Also as the title says how about Remo vs Evans?

My first heads on my first ever kit, the Pearl Exports were Pin's over stock reso's and 11 years later I tried Remo again. Anyone wanna give their opinion on Remo coated vs Evan's coated? I watched a tuning video for Evans heads and I have to be honest I didn't like it. When the guy went to go "stretch" the head out, the head seemed really plastic and brittle like. Remo Emp's are more soft if you will and seem more forgiving if that makes sense.

So anyway, this may open a good discussion or it might not. Thanks for any thoughts you guys and gals do give.

PDP

Last edited by PDPx7Drummer; 05-25-2012 at 03:18 AM.
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  #2  
Old 04-26-2012, 01:14 AM
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Default Re: Drum Head Combos / Brand Thoughts

fwiw, the last live drummer i saw was playing coated ambassador Xs over clear ambassadors on his toms with a half sized bit of moongel on each, and he was getting an excellent tone. very controlled, fat sound with a good amount of sustain despite the top heads being tuned relatively low. his kit was a maple yamaha similar to yours, with smaller fusion sizes 3up/1down. you may want to try this combination out first, but keep in mind this was at an outside venue with everything else absorbing any high end ring, you may want a warmer combo than this or even just try studio rings for studio stuff.
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  #3  
Old 04-26-2012, 01:31 AM
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Default Re: Drum Head Combos / Brand Thoughts

Appreciate it super rad! I agree about just going X's on top for now just to see if I like coated and then get the reso's if I feel I want to continue going that route. My room is literally like 24' L x 8' w x 8' H so the ring and over tones shine brightly lol, though not as bad as you would think. These PDP's really tune well especially with the batter and reso tuned the same. Really, really focused with little to no over tones and a decent sustain. Nice deep, feel it in your gut, rumble from the 16x14 with a fresh set of heads on there, they are really quite nice.

Good to get feedback, I may just pick up a set of X's for now, play them easily and then get the reso's if I like the sound and feel. GC has a pre pack for $39.99 with the 10, 12, 16 and a free 14, so all I'd need to buy is the 8.
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  #4  
Old 05-21-2012, 07:06 AM
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Default Re: Drum Head Combos / Brand Thoughts

Well I did it, I put the Ambassador X's on the batter and reso sides of the X7....

Over this past weekend I tore my drums apart, cleaned them up (I always keep them cleaned up anyhow lol), made sure my hoops were true and not bent from rim shots, cranked them down to an even tension with the Evan's torque key, let them set for a bit to seat them, brought them down a 1/4 turn at a time and then tuned them the same way I have been with my other head combo's. When cranking them up to seat them I went just a few clicks at a time with the torque key as to not warp the head or my drum. I started at like 4 which is about finger tight and then went in halves, like 4 1/2 - 5 - 5 1/2 - 6 etc until it was tied down quite a bit. Then I tuned them up using a setting of about one click before 5 1/2 and used the same setting on each drum both batter and reso. If anyone has this torque key, you will understand my way of using it.

As usual I started with the 16 and went up to the 10. My initial thoughts after I tuned them up and gave them a quick hit while holding them by the tom mount was, well I don't want to say not good but I was taken back by the feel and sound of them. At the time during my tuning process and after I hit them real quick to give it a test, was that they felt like paper to me lol. I just wasn't used to a coated, medium weight, single ply head at a somewhat loose tension. Plus I was listening to them in a fairly big and open room and wasn't used to the acoustics. Fast forward to the next day after the "newness" of having these type of heads on wore off and they got a chance to settle on the bearing edges, I got a chance to sit behind the kit and play in my normal environment of a 24' x 8' x 8' room.....

Yeah, I now know what drummers mean when they say coated over coated gives a fat, focused, studio sound to the drums. It's sort of hard to explain but there is a HUGE difference (obviously) between clear over clear and coated over coated and even with thick, heavy, clear 2 ply heads on top. It's definitely not as "bright" sounding and IMO gives a more deeper and focused tone to the drum at a tension that's just above JAW compared to say a clear Pinstripe over clear Ambassador combo.

The only thing that sort of worries me is that they are thin and feel a tiny bit brittle. Yes I am a fairly hard hitter but no I don't put dents into my drum heads. I know how to make them loud without digging into the drums lol but still would like a bit more "reinforcement" or durability feel to my heads while playing. Also the coating on them. While testing them out, I think I went around the drums doing 16th note drum fills about 15 or 20 times (which isn't a lot) and I can already see, very, very, very, very small hints of the clear part of the drum head showing through. That's kind of a let down. Though I suppose these heads are not exactly the type to be used with an aggressive drumming style. Maybe more so for Jazz or with a genre that's a bit more focused on the pocket and uses the toms less or doesn't call for aggressiveness on them.

So final thoughts. On one hand, the sound and feel of coated over coated, after really getting a chance to experience it properly, is really nice and is a cool sounding combo. It actually exceeds my expectations which were quite high. It's especially pleasing to the virgin ear, to where you don't need to wear ear plugs or protection to really hear the true tone of the drums or to block out all that attack and brightness from clear heads. On the other, I'm not too happy with the coating and I wish that Remo made a 14mm single ply head that came in all sizes needed like Evans has done. Remo really needs to step up their game and make THEIR 14mm single ply head available for drums ranging from 8" to 16" or bigger for those with 18" FT's.

So next time, I may go coated Emperor's over coated Ambassador's, not the X's, as that will give me my durable feel back but still give me my coated over coated sound or (and I hope I am forgiven by my fellow Remo users lol) I may try the Evans 14mm single ply coated both batter and reso..... maybe lol! Some say that the coating on Evans heads last longer so I would like to test those waters to see if that's true. Though for now I will certainly enjoy these heads and the sound it produces from these X7's.

PDP
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  #5  
Old 05-24-2012, 11:58 PM
Bobby H Bobby H is offline
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Default Re: Drum Head Combos / Brand Thoughts

Quote:
Originally Posted by PDPx7Drummer View Post
Well I did it, I put the Ambassador X's on the batter and reso sides of the X7....

Over this past weekend I tore my drums apart, cleaned them up (I always keep them cleaned up anyhow lol), made sure my hoops were true and not bent from rim shots, cranked them down to an even tension with the Evan's torque key, let them set for a bit to seat them, brought them down a 1/4 turn at a time and then tuned them the same way I have been with my other head combo's. When cranking them up to seat them I went just a few clicks at a time with the torque key as to not warp the head or my drum. I started at like 4 which is about finger tight and then went in halves, like 4 1/2 - 5 - 5 1/2 - 6 etc until it was tied down quite a bit. Then I tuned them up using a setting of about one click before 5 1/2 and used the same setting on each drum both batter and reso. If anyone has this torque key, you will understand my way of using it.

As usual I started with the 16 and went up to the 10. My initial thoughts after I tuned them up and gave them a quick hit while holding them by the tom mount was, well I don't want to say not good but I was taken back by the feel and sound of them. At the time during my tuning process and after I hit them real quick to give it a test, was that they felt like paper to me lol. I just wasn't used to a coated, medium weight, single ply head at a somewhat loose tension. Plus I was listening to them in a fairly big and open room and wasn't used to the acoustics. Fast forward to the next day after the "newness" of having these type of heads on wore off and they got a chance to settle on the bearing edges, I got a chance to sit behind the kit and play in my normal environment of a 24' x 8' x 8' room.....

Yeah, I now know what drummers mean when they say coated over coated gives a fat, focused, studio sound to the drums. It's sort of hard to explain but there is a HUGE difference (obviously) between clear over clear and coated over coated and even with thick, heavy, clear 2 ply heads on top. It's definitely not as "bright" sounding and IMO gives a more deeper and focused tone to the drum at a tension that's just above JAW compared to say a clear Pinstripe over clear Ambassador combo.

The only thing that sort of worries me is that they are thin and feel a tiny bit brittle. Yes I am a fairly hard hitter but no I don't put dents into my drum heads. I know how to make them loud without digging into the drums lol but still would like a bit more "reinforcement" or durability feel to my heads while playing. Also the coating on them. While testing them out, I think I went around the drums doing 16th note drum fills about 15 or 20 times (which isn't a lot) and I can already see, very, very, very, very small hints of the clear part of the drum head showing through. That's kind of a let down. Though I suppose these heads are not exactly the type to be used with an aggressive drumming style. Maybe more so for Jazz or with a genre that's a bit more focused on the pocket and uses the toms less or doesn't call for aggressiveness on them.

So final thoughts. On one hand, the sound and feel of coated over coated, after really getting a chance to experience it properly, is really nice and is a cool sounding combo. It actually exceeds my expectations which were quite high. It's especially pleasing to the virgin ear, to where you don't need to wear ear plugs or protection to really hear the true tone of the drums or to block out all that attack and brightness from clear heads. On the other, I'm not too happy with the coating and I wish that Remo made a 14mm single ply head that came in all sizes needed like Evans has done. Remo really needs to step up their game and make THEIR 14mm single ply head available for drums ranging from 8" to 16" or bigger for those with 18" FT's.

So next time, I may go coated Emperor's over coated Ambassador's, not the X's, as that will give me my durable feel back but still give me my coated over coated sound or (and I hope I am forgiven by my fellow Remo users lol) I may try the Evans 14mm single ply coated both batter and reso..... maybe lol! Some say that the coating on Evans heads last longer so I would like to test those waters to see if that's true. Though for now I will certainly enjoy these heads and the sound it produces from these X7's.

PDP
Thank you so much buddy !!!
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  #6  
Old 05-25-2012, 12:01 AM
Bobby H Bobby H is offline
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Default Re: Drum Head Combos / Brand Thoughts

What about the Evans EC2 ??
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  #7  
Old 05-25-2012, 03:34 AM
PDPx7Drummer
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Default Re: Drum Head Combos / Brand Thoughts

No problem Bobby, hope it helps. TBH the more I play it the more I REALLY like this combo. The heads are holding up very well and so is the coating so far. Actually I think having Evans coated G14's on top and bottom would be too much lol. With these Ambassador X's on top and bottom and with these thin shells, they've become quite muted with coated over coated but still sounds loud and good in my small room and very nice to the bare ear. They sound more fat, deep and controlled than a 2 ply over single ply head combo like Remo Pinstripes / Evans EC2's over a single ply clear head. I've beat on them fairly hard the past week and I can't even feel a single pit mark or dent, so I'm very pleased so far.

Honestly and this goes for anyone Bobby, we can all give our thoughts and share our experiences with different heads but it all comes down to you buying them and trying them, there really is no shortcut sorry to say. Like I told you in your thread, the shells on the M5 and X7's are very similar or even exactly the same and so far everything I've tried on these shells have gave off a proper and distinct sound with each head combo. You really can't go wrong with any setup you choose, IMO of course. I'd say start off with the company of your choice and go with a 2 ply over 1 ply clear to start. Learn the tolerences of your drums shells with those kinds of heads and just learn how to tune in general. It's all trial and error with what ever you do and like I say there is no shortcut lol.

Good luck Bobby,

PDP
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  #8  
Old 06-24-2012, 05:30 PM
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Swexx Swexx is offline
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Default Re: Drum Head Combos / Brand Thoughts

My drum teacher uses coated Ambassador X over clear Ambassador on toms and snare and they sound phenomenal! Durable and fat but not as "dead" as some Pinstripe combos can sound.

Good luck!
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  #9  
Old 06-27-2012, 04:08 AM
PDPx7Drummer
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Default Re: Drum Head Combos / Brand Thoughts

Very cool Swexx, thanks for the info. Yeah they are certainly fat and deep sounding with Ambassador X's on top and bottom. My 10" is starting to show a little bit of wear and tear because I use that one the most when messing around and being "creative" haha! Though for single ply it's not bad, I actually thought it would be 10x's worse being single ply but it and the rest are doing well.
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