New drums vs old drums

Sooo, after a long hiatus I’m getting back into drumming. Ironically, now that I’m not playing umpteen gigs every month I can suddenly afford a nice kit. I mean, my old kit is fine. It’s great, but, you know.

Anyways, my question is this- should I buy the older used Yamaha MCAN off Craigslist that I would have lusted over 15 years ago- or should I look at something new? Have drums gotten better over the last decade and half or is vintage the way to go?
 
I'm a big fan of new drums. I believe they continue to get incrementally better.

That said, I would jump at a smokin' deal on an older kit but for me personally, the early 2000's are my cut-off. Older kits tend to have power toms and I cannot stand those things. Just a preference, of course.

Lots of really excellent new kits available. That's where my money would go.
 
I'm a big fan of new drums. I believe they continue to get incrementally better.

That said, I would jump at a smokin' deal on an older kit but for me personally, the early 2000's are my cut-off. Older kits tend to have power toms and I cannot stand those things. Just a preference, of course.

Lots of really excellent new kits available. That's where my money would go.
What makes them incrementally better in your view? Is it just that new drums are more consistently and higher qc, that entry level drum kits aren’t crap like they used to be- or more like better suspension mounts, better bearing edges better hardware?

It funny- if you were to ask the same question on say a bicycle forum the answer would be obvious- new is better. I would think that drums would have improved over the last decade or so- but it’s much less obvious with drums than other things.
 
I play on my dads 1955 Ludwigs and my own 1994 Pearl Masters Customs....both are freaking great!!!

I think you just have to find something that sounds good first, and then look at the date it was made
 
What makes them incrementally better in your view? Is it just that new drums are more consistently and higher qc, that entry level drum kits aren’t crap like they used to be- or more like better suspension mounts, better bearing edges better hardware?
Basically, all of the above. Even entry and midrange kits are well built these days. I'm a huge fan of entry level pro kits. I have two of them, both bought new.

Another plus to buying new is the ability to pick the finish you like and not have to settle or roll the dice like you do when you go used. I think it's important to love the look of your kit. Do not settle if you do not have to!
 
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Do you what makes you happy to play. I wasn’t into new drums until I was shown Pearl Reference drums and how they were made did I think new drums had something to offer. Because even all the DW Collectors kits I’ve had just showed me a more refined maple shell - nothing really new there.
 
I personally don't think anyone's making a better kit than those MCANs these days. Different, sure, and maybe that different is what you're after (alas I personally prefer Birch Absolutes), but those old Sakae shells make a sound that I haven't heard in a current model kit. They're airy and precise at the same time. And not terribly expensive on the used market.
 
It seems like there was a big leap forward in the early 2000s, where drum companies suddenly started selling kits made with better woods and more exacting standards for fairly cheap. Since then, I haven’t really noticed any major advances in shells and shell construction (except for maybe those new Tama walnut/birch kits…)

If those Yamahas turned your crank years ago, by all means, you should pursue them. Maybe you’ll end up with your forever kit. Or, maybe you’ll find something better later and ditch them. Either way, you’ll have a resolution to your question, and won’t be haunted by the “what if” syndrome.
 
Sick tubs! Back in tha day, I had some awkwardly sized, but beautiful maple customs with the square gold lugs. I loved those drums.
Thanx. I bought the 14 as part of a 20, 12, 14 kit from a buddy a year or so ago. I just added the 24, 13, 16 a few weeks ago. All 8000 series except the 24x14 (9000 series).

Maple Customs are very cool. I too, dislike power toms(y) I've got a Slingerland kit up for sale right now, with those.:LOL:

You'll have to pitch me an "alternative" new kit you're interested in, before I say "Oh, get that instead of the MCAN's";)

And a price range you're comfortable with.
 
Drums have gotten better.
Sooo, after a long hiatus I’m getting back into drumming. Ironically, now that I’m not playing umpteen gigs every month I can suddenly afford a nice kit. I mean, my old kit is fine. It’s great, but, you know.

Anyways, my question is this- should I buy the older used Yamaha MCAN off Craigslist that I would have lusted over 15 years ago- or should I look at something new? Have drums gotten better over the last decade and half or is vintage the way to go?

I always find the question of "Are kits better now than they used to be?" really quite difficult to answer.... succinctly anyways.

I feel that there has been a trickle effect of quality into the lower end kits from the high-end bracket over a period of time.

The good woods, beautiful lacquered finishes, outstanding hardware quality, well engineered isolation mounting systems were once only really seen in the high-end, professional grade kits that were usually financially inaccessible to majority of the public.

However now, we see these features in the intermediate kits that are generally more financially accessible.

Even the name brand beginner kits have now got some sniffters of elements only seen in higher level kits.

So I think there's more bang for your buck in kits these days.

I THINK..........🤔
 
You get waaaay more for your money buying used. If the budget is big enough for a brand new kit, buy used and spend the left overs on even better cymbals, or hardware etc, etc.

Not sure about this 'new kit improvement' concept. My two best kits, the kits I play on every recording are a 1960's Oaklawn Camco and a 1991 Noble & Cooley Horizon. I rent a lot of kits for playing live abroad or sampling sessions and I haven't played anything that betters this two kits.
Yes, there are equally good modern kits, but not demonstrably better over the 30 year old N&Cs.
Finally - I would definitely buy the pro level kit you lusted after for years over a mid-priced new kit.
 
You'll have to pitch me an "alternative" new kit you're interested in, before I say "Oh, get that instead of the MCAN's";)

And a price range you're comfortable with.

Good questions! My cart is way ahead of my horse at this point, so I don’t have good answers. Budget is pretty flexible, but I don’t wanna spend a bunch of money just for the privilege of having a more expensive drum kit.

If not the MCANs I’d be looking at maybe some new Yamahas (ahm or something) or maybe C&C’s.
 
my question is this- should I buy the older used Yamaha MCAN off Craigslist that I would have lusted over 15 years ago- or should I look at something new?

If the sizes & finish are what you love, go for it. But if there’s any doubt about the condition of the hardware (rust, dents, stripped bolts, etc.) or if you think a newer tom mount design is better, then it’s time to investigate and acquire more info.

Have drums gotten better over the last decade and half or is vintage the way to go?

When Tama moved production to China in the 2000s, all us Tama fanboys were upset to the point of sickness. Terry Bissette posted a missive explaining the extent of the training Tama put the new employees through. In the years since, people have found that yes, indeed, the MIC drums sound just as good as the MIJ variety.

However, I noticed the small things: the Tama decal has been replaced with an ugly bolt-on badge and the lacquer finishes are simpler (But Tama just introduced a Crimson Red Waterfall that is not easy to produce).

If anything, the process of laying up & gluing plies of wood is the same as the older process. Perhaps the molds used to press, form & cook the shells have improved. Perhaps the chemical composition of the glue has improved.

What is “vintage”? 1960s? 1990s? Asking for a friend.
 
I loved my BCANs but the Nouveau lugs were nonsense and the hanging floor toms were a nuisance. I would buy another set but they would need to have regular lugs and floor tom legs.
 
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