My thoughts on Evans’ UV1 &2 (and why I’m sticking with Remo)

Pass.of.E.r.a.

Gold Member
Yay for click-bait titles but it obviously worked so…

So I’ve been using Remo heads for the past 15 years or so and at the beginning of 2020 a trusted friend and gear adviser was really pushing for me to try out some Evans stuff, specifically the UV1 on a new (to me) vintage Supra I had just picked up.

And I loved it.

2020 being the year that it was, I was able to spend far more time in the practice room than normal and really was able to put this head through its paces. Right off the bat what I loved about it was how after a few months of playing it still looked brand new. Compared to an Ambassador I found it to be a touch more “clicky” sounding, like someone had put a high shelf EQ on my snare, which was great for attack but it really didn’t have the low punch that I was used to. It wasn’t a really big deal to me since I could tune it down a little bit to compensate for it and the supra still sounded dope.

A little while later, the first remote session of the year comes through so that means time to replace the heads, and I figured this would be a great time to also try the UV2s on my toms. This is when my first red flag appeared. When I took the head off my snare (which at this point had been on for maybe 4 months) it was indented to the point of looking like it was several years old. Not just little stick marks, but like the centre 4” or so was noticeably lower than the rest of the head. I figured that maybe it just looked exaggerated because the head still looked new aside from that which was weird, so I’d just have to start putting a date on the head so I could know when to change it.

The UV2s had the same clicky quality that the UV1 had, but I found them really easy to tune (Tama Bubinga kit) and again, by compensating and tuning them a bit lower they sounded fantastic.

Next month’s session I opted to leave the tom heads and only replace the snare head (these are pretty expensive after all), and to no one’s great surprise I found the same denting/pitting issue with the head that I took off. This session was only for 1 song and including sound check/recording I only played the head for about 3 hours (video of the actual takes used can be found HERE) and much to my dismay there were TONS of noticeable stick dents on the head. I didn’t have my snare tuned particularly low or anything, and I wasn’t hitting harder than normal, but the denting was immediate. I figured that maybe it was just a one-off bad head since I didn’t have problems to that extent before, but then after the same thing happened on my next two sessions so I don’t think it was a one-off event sadly. I even had the same issue with the head deforming with the tom heads (on the kit for possibly 2 months) so I really feel that it’s just a problem with the UVs.

Fast forward to yesterday and out of curiosity I dug out my old Remo Coated Emperors (used for about a year including several sessions and a ton of live shows) and CS Dot (basically looked brand new, barely hit) just tapping them when they weren’t mounted to anything, they had WAY more tone/resonance/life in them than the UV1/2s that sounded like they were several years old. I put them on the kit and honestly they sounded just as good and maybe even a bit better, which was incredible considering how much older these heads are. This was kind of a crystallising moment to me. Not only do I prefer the sonic difference of Remo Emps over Evans’ UVs but I really believe Remo has way better durability, even if they mark up a bit more. It’s worth mentioning I haven’t found the same durability issues with the set of Clear G2s I have on my other kit, so I think it’s just a UV issue.

All in all I used two sets of UV2s (10/12/16) and 5 UV1s on a variety of snare drums including my Tama Warlord Bubinga Snare, and my 2 Vintage Supras.

Sorry for the absurd length of this post, hopefully you guys find some value in it! I’d be happy to answer any questions that anyone has about them.


TL;DR:
The Evans UV1&2 series lose their life way too quickly for their price point, and are prone to denting like off-brand drum heads.

-Jono
 

Bo Eder

Platinum Member
I'll play Remo forever, no deviations. I've truly never bought another brand. Remo has always seemed the king of heads to me. The crown logo supports that conclusion.
I stopped using Remo because of quality issues - some heads would be deader than others. It seemed like the only consistent head they made was the coated Ambassador to me.
 

Pass.of.E.r.a.

Gold Member
I'll play Remo forever, no deviations. I've truly never bought another brand. Remo has always seemed the king of heads to me. The crown logo supports that conclusion.
I definitely love them too!

I have a set of UV2s waiting to get used. I thought the whole idea behind the UV heads was that they wouldn’t die so quickly - I’ve had G2’s just die which was why I was eager to try the UVs. So I may end up going back to Remo too, eh?
That's what I thought too. And while most of them looked brand new (no stick marks) its like the mylar didn't have whatever it was that holds the head intact. Which reminds me, something I didn't mention was that on two of the 5 snare heads (UV1) the coating actually started flaking off!

Your experience on the G2s worries me. I was hoping to get a long life out of them, but maybe it just means I'll be switching to some clear CS dots quicker than I thought.

Interestingly enough, I've never really had problems with Remo. I've had the same pitting issues but over a much larger time scale and I've rarely if ever had problems with the coating chipping off. What problems did you encounter Bo?

-Jonathan
 

TK-421

Senior Member
To me, Remos have a fuller, richer sound than comparable Evans heads, which in comparison tend to have a sort of “plasticky” sound. And the difference isn’t even all that subtle. That’s why I‘ve always played Remos. There was a time about 5 or 10 years ago when their coated heads were having flaking issues, but that’s completely gone now. In fact, the coating is still 100% intact on the coated CS reverse dot head I’ve been using on my main snare for the past year.

As for toms, I switched to Smooth White Emperors a couple months ago, and I’m absolutely blown away by them! They make my toms sound EQ’ed, with an incredibly warm and rich sound combined with excellent attack. I was so impressed, last weekend I installed a Smooth White Powerstroke P3 on my bass drum batter, and it sounds insanely good now! It makes my 20” kick sound like a 22” (I also have a KickPort and a KickPro weighted kick drum pillow in there, which certainly help, but they were also there with my previous kick batter, a clear PS4, and I still noticed a huge difference with the head swap).
 

ToneT

Well-known member
As a long-time Remo user, I must say that Evans heads don't seem robust enough. Remo heads have a deeper, richer sound as far as my aging ears are concerned. They are way more durable than Evans models.
I do love the Evans Hydraulics on my bass drums. I make my own square impact patches with carpet tape and 10-mil drumheads.
So, those protected heads last a long, long time.
 

C.M. Jones

Well-known member
There was a time about 5 or 10 years ago when their coated heads were having flaking issues, but that’s completely gone now.

I remember that phase. As I recall, environmental regulations required Remo to change the chemical makeup of its coating around that time. Early efforts had kinks, but they were soon corrected. I use coated heads (textured, not smooth) on every drum, and they hold up impressively, maintaining both their tone and appearance for quite some time. I have absolutely no reason to stray from Remo. Why risk disappointment when I'm completely satisfied?
 

Bo Eder

Platinum Member
I definitely love them too!


That's what I thought too. And while most of them looked brand new (no stick marks) its like the mylar didn't have whatever it was that holds the head intact. Which reminds me, something I didn't mention was that on two of the 5 snare heads (UV1) the coating actually started flaking off!

Your experience on the G2s worries me. I was hoping to get a long life out of them, but maybe it just means I'll be switching to some clear CS dots quicker than I thought.

Interestingly enough, I've never really had problems with Remo. I've had the same pitting issues but over a much larger time scale and I've rarely if ever had problems with the coating chipping off. What problems did you encounter Bo?

-Jonathan
My issues with Remo is getting coated emperors where some were more muted than others. That was aggravating when you’ve outfitted five toms and one tom sounds more muffled than the others, and you’ve already played the head so you can’t really return it. So when I went to Evans, the quality is there, but when the G2s go dead, it happens in an instant - which is why I’m eager to try these new UV2s, which are sitting in my closet until I really need them.
 

C.M. Jones

Well-known member
I stopped using Remo because of quality issues - some heads would be deader than others. It seemed like the only consistent head they made was the coated Ambassador to me.

Can't say I've ever had a problem with Remo, but we all have different experiences that inform our brand selections. A lot of players swear by Evans, of course. I'd doubt they'd still be in business if they made horrible heads.
 

GetAgrippa

Platinum Member
Used Reno for years then tried Evan’s snd Aquarian. It’s been a tie between Reno and Evan’s because it’s almost like a restaurant you love and suddenly new management and sll your favorite dishes suck so I go back snd forth. One kit clear emperor another clear G2. Seems the Evan’s snare coating last longer on whole- only because some Remos don’t last a week but then you find one that last longer than Evan’s so a paradox I had a set of Remo pinstripes that i’d take off and put on my Pearl Vision 6 piece that lasted years.
 

ToneT

Well-known member
I remember having a CS Coated on my first Pearl Free Floater. That head lasted three years and then it went dull. I replaced it with an Evans G2 and it sounded very plasticky! Not full at all. I gave it two weeks to break in. It tuned up fine, but no cojones at all after two weeks! So, back to Coated Ambassadors and that's my snare batter of choice ever since.
 

IBitePrettyHard

Senior Member
Everyone talks about how durable the UVs are, but I think everyone has slightly misinterpreted the marketing. It's the coating that is more durable. IT'S THE COATING!

Everything else about the UVs are the same as any other head. The mylar is no more durable than before. That's my theory anyway.
 

lefty2

Platinum Member
I stopped using Remo quite a few years ago. Like Bo said the 2 ply heads were inconsistent, some would sing and others were dead. I've used G2s and currently I have EC2s on my toms. I really really really like them. I don’t hear that plastic sound on the EC2s, I do have a coated G2 on a fl. tom still and it has that plastic sound ever so sleightly. I used Aquarian super 2s for about a year, they were good also. Until recently I had always used Super Kick 1s on my kick drums. Now I’m using Evans EMAD 1s on my kicks. I've bought a new high end Yamaha kit in 2009 and a Ludwig kit last year, all 3 kicks came with some type of Remo heads. I think they may have been PS 4s not really sure. I much prefer SK1 or EMAD 1s over the Reno’s. It’s been maybe 15 years or so since I’ve used Remo so I really know about their current quality and I don’t think I have ever used UV heads, after reading this I probably won’t buy any. I'm pretty happy with the Evans heads that I have been using though.
 
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Pass.of.E.r.a.

Gold Member
Everyone talks about how durable the UVs are, but I think everyone has slightly misinterpreted the marketing. It's the coating that is more durable. IT'S THE COATING!

Everything else about the UVs are the same as any other head. The mylar is no more durable than before. That's my theory anyway.
I agree, but even then I did have some issues with the coating as well. 2 out of 5 UV1s lost significant amounts of coating within a couple of weeks of playing. I think the "durability" may actually refer to stick marks (not dents) not really appearing for a while.

@Bo Eder
Interesting on the muffling issues. I've never noticed that on my kit (my full kit is an 8/10/12/14/16) but I tune quite a bit higher than most people, so maybe that's why?

-Jono
 

CommanderRoss

Silver Member
The only pull Evans has on me is their hydraulic’s. I’ve used them since the 80’s & Remo doesn’t have a comparable head. I love how they work on certain drums.

That being said...

I’ve been a fan of the Remo CS black dots on toms for the same amount of time I’ve loved the hydraulics. The 70’s wet, thuddy sound I get from those just work on any drum I put them on.
Evans doesn’t have a comparable head that will do what those do.

So to me, it’s really about finding what works for your brand of drums. Once you find the right combo, playing is perfection.
 

Justinhub2003

Well-known member
I personally just stopped having an allegiance to any brand.

I just try to find what works for each specific drum.
I think Aquarian makes the kick heads, Evans makes the best Tom heads for rock, and remo makes the best snare heads in general.

As for the UV series specifically, I’ve never liked them.

I’d rather use a G2 or an EC2 from Evans.
 

Drumolator

Platinum Member
I got a UV2 as a prototype from Evans. I put it on my snare and have never removed it because to me it sounds great. My snare is a Mapex Saturn V. Peace and goodwill.
 

MusiQmaN

Platinum Member
After the price increase and quality decline (coating and denting mostly) of Remo over the years (I have been a Remo player for over 24 years and good friends with the reps), and the crazy durability of the Evans heads I switched gradually this year, and now full on Evans.

The kit I bought from a well known touring drummer had a G2/G1 clear combo on the toms.

56994FE8-5336-4249-A049-9AF6B3FAE0C7.jpeg

When I got the kit over a year a-go, The heads were already on it for at least half a year and looked and sounded like they were new.

Now they still do (The same goes for the EQ3 on the kick).

As I always loved the tiny holes in a head (I even made them myself on Remo heads later in my life) opposed to the dot, it was a no brainer to get the Genera Dry.

I don’t experience Evans being plastic sounding. On the contrary. I experience that with Remo with their clear and especially ebony heads.

I don’t experience Evans being plastic sounding, the contrary. I have that with Remo clear and especially ebony heads.

This came apperent to me when I received the 12” tom earlier this year. As that one came with an AA Smooth White head.

390BA736-E191-45ED-8857-1F2B10C5CCFF.jpeg

Three snares still have Remo and each time I play those, Im glad I made the switch.

CDA602D1-BDE5-49C8-A4B5-4EEF2B891CEA.jpeg
 
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Treverer

Junior Member
I'm using UV2s for months now and they don't show any wear until now, a few stick marks, that's it. No flaking, no dents in my tom heads.

In my (semi)professional life as a drum tech I have to use Remo and the coating starts to chip after one show. BUT they sound less plasticky imho and are not bad heads by any means. They still sound good even after the coating wears off.


Pretty sure all three major companies make excellent heads for different occasions.
 
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