Help purchasing Mapex Saturn V MH Exotic

BigMeach

Member
Hello all,

I am looking for some assistance. As the title suggests, I am about to purchase Mapex Saturns. My problem lies in picking the sizes as I don't have anywhere local to me that has them in store to try out. The size options are:

"Fast Sizes" : Bdrum: 22"X20". Toms: 10"X07", 12"X08",14"X12", 16"X14"

"Studioease": Bdrum: 22"X18". Toms: 10"X08", 12"X09",14"X14", 16"X16"

They're the same drums, configuration, finishes, just different options on the depths. I find it sort of odd that the "Fast Sizes" which are shallower come with a deeper bass drum. Not sure why that is. But I am looking for help from anyone who has these or has knowledge of them.

I've decided on the brand, drum diameter, finish. Just getting hung up on the depth.
 

IBitePrettyHard

Senior Member
Studioease all the way.

On the Fast Sizes kit...the 22x20" bass is too deep for most people. It may have more boom, but it'll have less articulation, have a more sluggish response, and be more awkward to transport.

Also, the 14x12 and 16x14 floor toms are not the ideal depth IMO. They don't have the rumble that the 14x14 and 16x16 depths have.

The Studioease kit has very good sizes. The floor toms will have more rumble and sound like actual floor toms instead of extended rack toms.
 
Last edited:

Winston_Wolf

Platinum Member
I don't get their names either. There's nothing "fast" about a 22x20" bass drum...

Basically, deeper drums have a longer note, but honestly, in the real world I'm not sure you'll hear much of a difference in the tom sizes.

If I planned on cutting the bass drum down to 14" I might get the 20" deep drum just to have a little more room to play with, but I feel that's a whole different topic...

I'd go for the Studioease configuration to avoid the deep bass drum but get the deeper toms. When I had a Mapex kit that was the configuration I chose.
 

larryace

"Uncle Larry"
My suggestion is to get the shallowest bass drum they offer, which I think is an 18. If they offer a 16 or a 14, I'd opt for one of them instead. A 20" deep bass drum...is too much. I have one so I know. It's not the sound (which I don't have a problem with), it's the inconvenience, and it's really not necessary, 20 inches of depth. It's kind of stupid deep. Shallower bass drums just punch better.
I'd also recommend the deeper sized rack toms, and the shallower sized floor toms, if you can get them like that. Of course, I can only suggest what I'd get for myself, and our tastes might differ.
Make sure you're clear on the depths you want, it's important. You don't want to say after the fact...I wish I would have went with...
 

incrementalg

Gold Member
Studio ease of the two you mentioned. Like Larry, I’d opt for a more shallow bass drum. 14” depth is my current size with 16” being the max I’d want.
 

BigMeach

Member
I agree completely with all of you on the bass drum, my favorite bass drum is a 22x16".

With that said, if I can find a way to get a shallower bass drum, would you all still say studio ease? I ask, because I've been reading a lot of forums about box drums being hard to tune, shallower toms are better etc.

If I could get the Fast Sizes with the 20x18 kick, or both kits with a 20x16 (miraculously), would Fast Sizes be the one to go with or still studioease?

I know it's my choice in the end, but all input is appreciated. I don't think I'll be disapointed either way just trying to gather all info I can.

Thanks all.
 

gdmoore28

Gold Member
Studioease version without any hesitation. I played one of these kits recently, and the reputation that Saturns have for first-rate quality and sound is well-earned. The Studioease version has tom sizes that have proven themselves over the years as offering the optimum tuning ranges and predictable tonal responses. Like the others, I've come to think that the move to bass drums deeper than 16" simply has not been worth the extra materials involved. But until the manufacturers (and consumers) get over the deep bass drum trend, the deeper sizes will just have to do.

GeeDeeEmm
 

IBitePrettyHard

Senior Member
...I ask, because I've been reading a lot of forums about box drums being hard to tune, shallower toms are better etc.

I've not heard that deeper drums are harder to tune, at least not floor toms specifically.

Square rack toms like 10x10" or 12x12" may have some issues tuning higher I suppose, but square floor toms have proven themselves for decades.

Both the Fast and Studioease configurations have rack toms that sit very comfortably in the sweet spot, and are not considered to be deep. You should have no issues tuning either the 12x8" or 12x9" for example.

Floor toms are different than rack toms, in my opinion. You want them to sound like a floor tom, a low pitched rumble, not like a bigger rack tom.
 
Studioease all the way.

On the Fast Sizes kit...the 22x20" bass is too deep for most people. It may have more boom, but it'll have less articulation, have a more sluggish response, and be more awkward to transport.

Also, the 14x12 and 16x14 floor toms are not the ideal depth IMO. They don't have the rumble that the 14x14 and 16x16 depths have.

The Studioease kit has very good sizes. The floor toms will have more rumble and sound like actual floor toms instead of extended rack toms.

I’d go this route also . Not a shallow Tom guy , besides I love the sound and range of the deeper ( although they’re not deep to me ) 10x8 and 12x19 toms . And more rumble on the floors ??
 

Duck Tape

Platinum Member
I have 2 Saturn kits and some add on drums mostly in studioease sizes but I’d be keen to try the fast set.

Reasons for this:
I recently bought a sakae kit with the same Tom sizes and the 10x7 and 12x8 are so nice and easy to setup over the kick and speak very clearly, it’s a refreshing change.

The 20” kick depth has so much balls it’s pretty much my favourite depth - the way around the slow response everyone complains about is easily fixed with a bit of muffling like a pillow or blanket touching both heads. Only downside for me would be the extra size and weight making transportation more difficult.

And as for floor Tom depths - I have both saturns with square floor toms and the fast depths and I don’t really prefer either, both are great.

The fast sizes are definitely a valid choice.
 

PorkPieGuy

Platinum Member
I love the sound of a 22 x 18. I have two of them. I've owned two 20" depth kicks (both were 20" x 20") and I grew to dislike them, but the feel and the look. The only way I get 20" depth kick now is if I've gone ahead and figured that I was getting it cut down to like a 14" or something.
 

Woolwich

Silver Member
Lots of conflicting advice, what I'm going to add agrees with and is different to the advice of other members, but here I go anyway.
As a past owner of a Saturn III and current owner of a Saturn V in some of the sizes you've mentioned, as well as being the owner of other kits that cover almost all of the options you've mentioned I'll say this.
I'd prefer the Studioease depth toms but that's purely an aesthetically made choice. I've got the shallower "FAST" sizes though, and they tune well and sound full. the 12" Saturn "FAST" toms I've owned have been my favourites for the full tone they produce. The 1" tom depth between your choices isn't huge, neither option are particularly deep and I predict they'd be as easy to tune as each other. It's only once you get to square sizes and beyond that I've had to spend longer tuning drums up.
The only experience I've had of shallow floor toms was a 14" x 12" hanging tom I had years ago, I honestly can't think of anything massively negative or positive to say about it. I'll contradict my former statement about square sizes, 14" x 14" and 16" x 16" floor toms work well and are pretty much an industry standard for a reason.
The bass drum is where my strongest feelings lie. having took the plunge many years ago and bought a 20" x 14" and realising how easy it was to tune and how great it sounded I've become a fan of shallower depths. My current set up has a 20" x 16", deeper than I wanted but it's not a problem. I've owned the 22" x 20" bass drum as a Saturn III and I really didn't like it. As someone who transports his kits by car and plays in pubs where space even for more standard sized equipment is already at a premium, the added depth of that drum was a hassle. had it sounded brilliant then I'd have been happy with the trade off, but despite my best efforts I never got that drum to do what I wanted it too. I'm pretty sure I've written on here at least once before, and I've said in conversation several times, that I'd have never sold that Saturn kit if the bass drum had been 18" or 16" deep.
Ultimately it's your choice but looking again at your options I'd plump for the Studioease without hesitation
 

mikyok

Platinum Member
I'd go down the 22x18 route if you want that specific finish.

I have the Saturn V Tour which has a 20x14/22x16/24x14 bass drum options. I have the 20x14 which is a beaut. The tour series also has more standard size toms but only sells them in 1 up 1 down configs. Found this ex-demo Saturn V Tour in standard sizes if it's any good and you're in the UK.

You won't be disappointed with a Saturn V. I've just added the 90s Deep Forest Walnut snare (The one the 30th anniversary is based on.
 

ineedaclutch

Platinum Member
I would buy the Fast and cut 6" off of the kick, and then I would turn that scrap piece into a very transportable single headed kick. I'm equipped to do that though.
 

Darth Vater

Senior Member
I had a Saturn IV exotic kit with the 22x20 kick and shallow toms and it was a really cool kit. I put an Aquarian SuperKick II and their Regulator reso head on it and it was one of the best bass drum sounds I'd ever heard. Toms were cool too. It was really hard to get that kick in my car though. :eek:
 

Tommy_D

Platinum Member
I would go fast sizes so long as the finish isn't some sort of burst. The more traditional sized toms and the shallower floor toms will have better fundamental tones. Square floor toms suck to tune. I don't mind a 10x8 or 12x9, but the 1 inch shallower is nicer and they let you set them just a touch lower over the bass drum.

As for that 20" deep bass drum, cut that f*cker down to 16".
 
Top