I really like those Session Studio Classic drums, or the masters set. I don't mind the color. However, I have a few questions.
1. How would I mount the toms?
2. What snare would go with it?
3. What are the differnces between the two kits (SSC vs Masters BCX)?
But the decade maples for $465 keep coming back. Thats the asking price of used export kits on Craigslist here.
I know I'm overthinking this, but that's what I do.
I figured I'd just quote this - it's a great comprehensive answer, and in particular I think it's important to look at cymbals. Drums can be good or bad with how they are tuned, almost regardless of the quality level of the actual drums. Example: I've heard some pretty cringey DWs because they just weren't set up worth a dang, and I've heard some great sounding Pearl Exports, Tama Rockstars, and Yamaha Stage Customs that sounded awesome because they were carefully set up by their owners. With that in mind, a cymbal is what it is, and it's hard to make a cheap cymbal sound good.Drums
Most modern kits come in two versions ... a version constructed for Recording purposes or an Entry level kit..... Most manufacturers don't make kits for live performance any longer. Therefore what you were used to in the 1990s is almost unavailable today...
The most versatile kit I am aware of today is the Yamaha Rydeen, I advise updating the Bass hoops however and use the TH-940A tom holder assembly (non Yess), and of course the drum heads. Its the best sounding kit for the money and with proper heads, it can be tuned to provide a sound that fits just about any venue you can think of..... The kit is coated with cheezy plastic, it doesn't effect the sound and the plastic protects the drum shells during gigging about town..... its easy enough to change later If you so desire....
Hardware & Cases
Yamaha hardware has been proven to survive the test of time gigging wise .... I would therefore suggest acquiring one of their pre-boxed sets. If you know you will be gigging around town .... get some drum cases..... Nylon cases can be acquired for under 200 bucks now days.
Since you last played the Cymbal market has exploded and there is a plethora of choices... in that arena ... I would head to Guitar Center (or some similar sales outlet) with drumstick in hand and play each cymbal until I settled on a sound...... Don't be surprised if your eventual choices are mixed among several manufacturers and several model lines.
One thing of interest that has changed since you were last involved is the use of mesh heads for practice.... I find these to be a much better choice than electronic drums because they provide the same feed back as acoustic drums and your muscle memory related to drum position won't be effected by switching back and forth from electronic to acoustic. Mesh heads and Mesh cymbals (aka Low volume) will allow you to play without affecting the neighbors or family members sanity.