EVANS ONYX - Our New Favorite Heads? | Sakae Almighty Birch 18/12/14

The last time we featured this kit in a video, we had put Coated Ambassadors and Yamaha Diecast hoops on both batter and reso sides. While it was a fun configuration to play on, we felt the sound was a little choked.

Today, we think we've found our favorite heads for these drums: Evans Onyx. These heads are crazy. They feel great, they sound punchy and can hold a tone, even when cranked for bop tuning (listen for the floor tom). On the snare, the Onyx is precise and powerful. The bass drum head comes with a foam ring which we took out to get our bop sound. In short, every drum has a head that compliments it best, and in the case of this Sakae, it's the Onyx.

From D'Addario/Evans website: "Evans Onyx drumheads feature two plies of 7.5mil film that will deliver enhanced durability, plus a frost coating that appears matte black on the Onyx heads to increase low-end response and attack. These drumheads incorporate Evans Level 360 Technology for ease of tuning, extended pitch range, and optimum quality of sound."

Our kit configuration:
18x14 Bass Drum
12x8 Tom
14x12 Floor Tom

Snare Drum: Sakae Bubinga 6.5x14 with Yamaha Die Cast Hoops

Cymbals: 22” Zildjian K Con Renaissance Ride (2407g) - Modified by Jesse Simpson, 21" Istanbul Mehmet Nostalgia 50s Sizzle Ride (2081g), 15" Zildjian Vintage A Hats

Mics: We used two AKG C214 microphones as overheads, a Shure SM57 on the snare, and an AKG D12 VR on the bass drum.

Enjoy!
 

ToneT

Well-known Member
In what configuration are the overhead mics placed?
The mounted tom seems a bit thin and distant in relation to the other three.
 

Rattlin' Bones

Gold Member
Too bad Sakae isn't making drums anymore. Love my Sakae Trilogy snare. I find a Trilogy kit with 18 or 20 kick at reasonable price I'm buying it!

Evans Onyx drumheads feature two plies of 7.5mil film? So a 15mm thick head sounds good on snare and toms? How the heck isn't it a total tone killer?
 
In what configuration are the overhead mics placed?
The mounted tom seems a bit thin and distant in relation to the other three.
We didn't close mic anything unfortunately, the overheads are just placed above the cymbals and pointed towards the snare. If you have any recommendations for mic placement we'd love to hear!
 
Too bad Sakae isn't making drums anymore. Love my Sakae Trilogy snare. I find a Trilogy kit with 18 or 20 kick at reasonable price I'm buying it!

Evans Onyx drumheads feature two plies of 7.5mil film? So a 15mm thick head sounds good on snare and toms? How the heck isn't it a total tone killer?
Right? It's pretty wild.
 

Iristone

Well-known Member
Evans Onyx drumheads feature two plies of 7.5mil film? So a 15mm thick head sounds good on snare and toms? How the heck isn't it a total tone killer?
It's the same thickness as Remo's Vintage Emps. I don't see how it kills tone by thickness alone.
 

Rattlin' Bones

Gold Member
It's the same thickness as Remo's Vintage Emps. I don't see how it kills tone by thickness alone.
Here's what Remo says about Vintage Emperors:

"At low volumes, note that the Emperor Vintage is less responsive, with the thicker construction giving a more choked sound."

And a bop kit is generally gonna be played at lower volumes, so yeah it's gonna kill tone more than a thinner head at low volumes. How that thick Evans Onyx can sound precise and powerful I can't understand. The extra thickness on the Remo, according to Remo, makes their's sound less responsive and choked.

Does give me an idea on a head to try with some jazz guys I'm playing with. They play wayyyyy low volume such that I just can't get snare to play softly enough on crushed rolls. A 15 mil Remo Vintage Emp or the Evans Onyx might be worth trying. But I would never put such thick heads on toms unless I want to hear the sound of drumsticks on cardboard.
 
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