Is Yamaha Stage Custom an upgrade over Sonor Safari?

el roso

Member
That’s what I’m thinking. So is there any advantage to having an 18” over a 16” bass drum? Seems I’d likely have to mic either one except for small venues.

Maybe? I don't know what sound or feel you're going for. Is there something specific you don't like about the 16?
 

Jml

Senior Member
Maybe? I don't know what sound or feel you're going for. Is there something specific you don't like about the 16?

Up to now, I’ve only used the kit to jam with a buddy in my garage. Sounds fine. My issue is we’re supposed to play outdoors (someone’s backyard jam) on July 4 and I’m concerned how it will sound (as is, unmic’d) in that environment. Assuming things go well, there may be more gigs in the future. So I’m trying to figure out the best solution to any future issues now. Oh, and having two kits, at this point, doesn’t appear to be an option - hence the potential trade in of my Safari.
 

el roso

Member
I’m concerned how it will sound (as is, unmic’d) in that environment. Assuming things go well, there may be more gigs in the future. .

If you're concerned that a 16" won't cut it un-mic'd volume wise then I can't imagine that an 18" would be much better. Maybe think about moving up to a 20 or 22 if you want to play un-mic'd and cut through the PA?

That said a bass drum mic is one of the better investments I've made, either one of these two will do the job.

http://www.shure.com/americas/products/microphones/beta/beta-52a-kick-drum-microphone

https://www.akg.com/Microphones/Dynamic Microphones/D112MkII.html

Sooner or later, you'll probably need one anyway and if the 16" works for everything else a mic is cheaper than a new kit .... I have the Beta 52 and it's solid, I wouldn't be worried about getting used one for cheap either if I could find it.

Good luck!
 

GetAgrippa

Platinum Member
The poor lil Safari 16 in "kick" gets little respect. I know it's some delusional 16 in tom that wants to be a kick drum-like the little ant that could-but I support such a valiant effort. I have a Safari and I love the lil thing-it's great for small room practice or small venue gigs (I use to leave it in our orchestra practice room)-yeah the kick is "thumpy" with no tone (and the snare is nothing to write home about) but I just can't part with the little fella (it still gets compliments). I bought to leave for practice (got tired of lugging kits around) and I still think it has the original heads LOL.
 

PorkPieGuy

Platinum Member
I wonder how many people who diss 16" bass drums actually gigged with one with PA support.

I gigged with a 16" Sonor Safari bass drum for several years, and I got nothing but massive complements on the tone. A decently tuned 16" bass drum, a well placed decent BD mic, and a good PA can create Any bass drum tone. Any.

Good point.

With that said, I'm the drummer AND the PA guy in my band. I think I'd rather carry around a 20" kick as opposed to a 16" kick and a set of subs.

If I played a lot of places where there was already a PA in place and we got to mic the kick all the time, I might change my mind though.
 

PorkPieGuy

Platinum Member
Personally, I'd probably be more interested to play the Sonor. Stage Customs are well made, but I see them everywhere.


I see Toyota Camry's everywhere too. It doesn't mean they are bad cars (and I know this is not your point, but I thought I'd throw it out there anyways). Are you saying you'd be interested in the Sonors simple because you don't see them as often? If so, I get it. I enjoy playing a brand that's a little off the beaten path in these parts. :)
 

el roso

Member
I see Toyota Camry's everywhere too. It doesn't mean they are bad cars (and I know this is not your point, but I thought I'd throw it out there anyways). Are you saying you'd be interested in the Sonors simple because you don't see them as often? If so, I get it. I enjoy playing a brand that's a little off the beaten path in these parts. :)

Yeah, that's what I was saying. Camry's are good, solid, reliable cars. They just don't inspire me to make me want to drive one.
 

Jml

Senior Member
Interesting how this thread has developed. It seems like the vast majority don't think there is an appreciable difference between a 16" and 18". At least not worth trading in one for another. So the question then becomes a 16" vs. 20". The 20" appears to be the smallest most people will go for a BD they gig with. And I've seen on other threads the 20" x 14" seems to get the universal thumbs up from the drumming community. I wonder how many use a 20" or bigger because they are rock/heavy metal guys, and how many use a 16 or 18 inch kick because they play jazz/funk etc. Is it venue that determines size, or is it the type of music you play when buying???
 

el roso

Member
I don't think there are any hard and fast rules. I've seen heavy drummers play little bass drums and jazz drummers play 28's. The right kit for you will be the one that makes you want to play it more.

I will tell you this from experience though. In general, lower priced kits will depreciate worse than premium line ones.

For example: If I could handle the upfront cost, I would rather buy a $2000 kit and sell it for $1500 than buy a $800 kit and sell it for $300. At the end of the day, it still costs you $500 but you will have a nicer kit during the time you have it and you'll be less likely to want to go through the whole 'upgrade' cycle again in a few years.

Another option is to look at quality used kits that have already done their depreciating.
 

drumhammerer

Silver Member
oh, there's no doubt there's a difference between the 16 and 18. I've played both in the same room, (both made from the same wood), and the 18 just has better tone, volume, and presence. One important thing though, if you're gonna play a kick smaller than a 20 you gotta have a lift for it. My 18 is just a floor tom, but I made a lift for it where it hit dead center, and it sounds killer. However, if I put it on the floor it sounds like crap- much thinner sounding, and less low end. If you wanna go with a 20 check out the Pearl decade maples, too- 699$ for a 5 piece shell kit, cool finishes, and they're MAPLE. I've got one with the 20, and I'm loving it- great tone, and they're light. Another cool thing with those is you can order additional drums for them, (I ordered a 24, which I also love), so if you don't like the 20 you can get an 18, 22, or a 24 in the same exact finish, along with extra tom sizes, or gong drum, lol.
 

Bonzo_CR

Silver Member
Interesting how this thread has developed. It seems like the vast majority don't think there is an appreciable difference between a 16" and 18". At least not worth trading in one for another. So the question then becomes a 16" vs. 20". The 20" appears to be the smallest most people will go for a BD they gig with. And I've seen on other threads the 20" x 14" seems to get the universal thumbs up from the drumming community. I wonder how many use a 20" or bigger because they are rock/heavy metal guys, and how many use a 16 or 18 inch kick because they play jazz/funk etc. Is it venue that determines size, or is it the type of music you play when buying???

For me it's the venue. I have a kit with a 22 kick but the whole kit is too much for some smaller gigs I play, so I got the smaller kit with the 16 kick (breakbeats) for those places, and it works really well.
 

Jml

Senior Member
For me it's the venue. I have a kit with a 22 kick but the whole kit is too much for some smaller gigs I play, so I got the smaller kit with the 16 kick (breakbeats) for those places, and it works really well.

Thanks for all the responses. Seems like the best thing to do might be keep my Sonor Safari for small gigs/venues, and buy a second kit at some point for bigger gigs/venues. Regardless, I’ll probably have to get mics at some point.
 
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