Pro-Mark......Your Thoughts?

krautfox

Member
I really like pro-mark sticks NOW - which is funny because OP think they've gone down hill.

My biggest problem with ProMark had always been that a majority of their sticks had the forward balance as a signature part of the Pro Mark feel and I never cared for that feel.
It is always a question of personal preferences and taste, because that's exactly what I've always loved about Promark and why I always feel at home with their sticks.
 

Ruok

Silver Member
I enjoy their tips the most as well; when recording, my sound engineer always prefers the promark tips for cymbal and drum sound. Like I said, they just feel and sound like a drum stick should feel, IMO.
Very interesting. I don't know if you've seen my thread on Promark sticks possibly generally having more "click" to their sound than other brands, which is what I'm after. After seeing this comment, I'd like to ask you what specifically is it about the tips that you and the sound engineer prefer. We sometimes hear things differently and want different qualities in a stick, as you know. Some want a more prominent drum/cymbal sound and others want it less prominent in the mix. Some want bright others darker, etc. I know it can be difficult describing sound. But what is it about the tips that you like?
 

krautfox

Member
Very interesting. I don't know if you've seen my thread on Promark sticks possibly generally having more "click" to their sound than other brands, which is what I'm after. After seeing this comment, I'd like to ask you what specifically is it about the tips that you and the sound engineer prefer. We sometimes hear things differently and want different qualities in a stick, as you know. Some want a more prominent drum/cymbal sound and others want it less prominent in the mix. Some want bright others darker, etc. I know it can be difficult describing sound. But what is it about the tips that you like?
I just read it, and yeah, I agree to a certain extent. With my personal experience, I'm talking about the tips of the Elvin Jones' and Classic 7a's (they have the same tip), which I compared to the VF 7a's, 85a's, 8d's, Vater Manhattan 7a's and LA 5a's during a recording session.

It all depends what you define as "click"; if that just means better articulation, or if it means a brighter sound coming from the cymbal...? I generally find that promarks have a particular articulation that I enjoy: precise, "woody" sounding and yet mellow. It's a blend I find perfect. The VF 7a's and 8d's (same tip) just have the "ping", higher pitched, and don't bring out enough of the lows and complex overtones of my cymbals. Oddly enough, they aren't as articulate, especially with more complex and fast ride patterns. The tips of 85a's opened up the cymbals, but lost some articulation. As for the Vaters', they were just more mellow in general, which is great for recording softer acoustic music, but less so if you go for stronger dynamics while still wanting pronounced articulation.

Promarks just seem to open up my cymbals in the most beautiful ways while still retaining articulation, hence a "click", and my sound guy agrees when listening by ear-shot and after recording samples. Like someone said in your thread, this could be because of the front-heavy feel the classic promarks have, meaning a stronger shoulder and therefore more heft going into the cymbal. It's an interesting theory that I think has merit. I also believe that it has to do with general density of promark sticks compared to the Vaters' or Vic Firths', which references the moisture content that each brands decides to have. I don't have the exact numbers here (anyone feel free to correct me), but I think Vater are around 10-12% of moisture content in their dowels, whereas VF are around 8 or so, and I think Promark is sensibly the same, perhaps maybe less. That's why some sticks are heavier than others, and with the same exact model, with 2 different pairs, you won't get exactly the same sound.

I've also tried Rebound 7a's in acorn and teardrop tips compared to VF 8d's and Vater Sweet Rides, and they too had a mix of a "woody" articulation and mellowness. However, I felt they opened up my cymbals a lot less than my favored 7a's and Elvin Jones, which is why the "front-heavy" theory is pretty interesting. The Sweet Rides, I do love them; you can't get more precise articulation than a small round bead, and they too have a front-heavy feel because of the short taper.

I generally enjoy front-heavy sticks, like the classic Promarks, for those reasons. They seem to really bring out the beautiful overtones of my cymbals while retaining articulation. Back-heavy sticks, with long tapers, like most jazz sticks, I feel loose something, don't bring out enough of the overtones, so everything feels "lighter". But hey, I think it's more a question of technique too, just look at Roy Haynes or Art Blakey with their long tapered sticks :p ! And then there's Tony Williams with his hefty short-tapered 2b's !

Hope this (a bit too) long answer helps ! This is all just what my own ears hear; others might hear the opposite !
 

keg

New member
VF has a quality control problem. I recently purchased several pairs of Vic Firth sticks. Over time, with one pair (85A), I became aware of some unevenness in the sound of my ride cymbal (a 22" Istanbul Agop Signature Ride): it sounded bright and wonderful but then became dull sounding (no ping) with a lot of unwanted overtones. For a while, I thought it might be due to the hand-hammered, hand-crafted nature of the cymbal, so I rotated the cymbal a bit, which seemed to bring back the cymbal's bright sound. But today, I finally came to realize that one of the two Vic Firth sticks must have an uneven-formed bead -- maybe the bead is flattened out over some of its surface. If I slowly rotate the stick, playing an even jazz ride-cymbal pattern in the same place on the cymbal, I reach a point in the rotation where the cymbal sounds dull. Rotating the stick just a little bit brings back the brightness of the cymbal. if I switch sticks and perform the same experiment of rotation, the sound is evenly bright throughout the rotation. (Playing different areas of the cymbal with the one stick doesn't' solve the problem. My old V F sticks I've been using for years sound just fine with the same cymbal.)

The other pairs were rough to the feel -- I thought I might get a splinter from them -- and had rough ends (the domed ends). My old VFs were smooth to the touch -- well finished. For the new pairs, I had to take very fine grain sandpaper to achieve the smooth (i.e. acceptable wood stick) finish.

I've been playing dozens of Vic Firth sticks for 30+ years without any quality control issues I can recall. As this recent pairs suffer from a manufacturing defect, I emailed customer service as VF (Zildjian) but have not yet received a response (and it's past the promised 48 hours for a reply). Ugh.
 

cbphoto

Gold Member
From the D’Addario web site:

Since 2013, Promark has planted over 320,000 trees. In partnership with the Tennessee Department of Agriculture, Promark plants over 85,000 seedlings every year to restore forests and raise new ones.
Can anyone confirm this? (It’d be great if it was true)
 

Jasta 11

Well-known member
The one thing they absolutely get right are their Rods. I dont know why other companies cant make a rod that stays tight like theirs. Ive tried them all but Pro-mark for some reason just makes them the best. I use Vic Firth brushes and have other brands of sticks too but only their rods.
 

CommanderRoss

Silver Member
I love the Mike Portnoy model. Nylon tip & they just have a great balance for me. I'd like to try the Neil Peart ones, just to see how they fare.

My other go-to is the Thomas Lang model by Vic. Just indestructible and you get used to the weight pretty fast.
 
D

Deleted member 525878

Guest
I miss those Golden Oak 808 Billy Cobham sticks!
 

cbphoto

Gold Member
Which stick, regardless of brand, has a 5B-ish diameter with a 5A or lighter feel?

5A is light and allows my cymbals to breathe better. 5B and they just wash away.
 

Tony Trout

Senior Member
I don't use anything but Pro-Mark sticks (7A - New Generation II) because they are light in my hands when I'm playing and I can move around my drum kit pretty well.

(I know that sounded like a really, really dumb answer but......I don't know how to answer questions like these). :confused::unsure:
 

PaisteGuy

Well-known member
Started out using VF, then switched to Pro-Mark in the last year. I have a few varieties In the bag, but really like and use the Simon Phillips 707 model the most.
 

iCe

Senior Member
Which stick, regardless of brand, has a 5B-ish diameter with a 5A or lighter feel?

5A is light and allows my cymbals to breathe better. 5B and they just wash away.
Try maple sticks. Vater has a 5B maple, Promark has the Todd Suchermann Signature stick which is similar to a 5B and Wincent also has a 5B maple.
Using the Vaters now and have the Wincent sticks standby to try out after i run out of the Vater sticks. Used the Todd Sucherman sig sticks for a few years as well and is a great stick, but fairly expensive and that's the main reason is switched to Vater (and now probably to Wincent).

Maple sticks are softer and lighter (so maybe not as durable as hickory), but i like that you have a normal stick without the added weight. Also prefer the sound on the cymbals as well.
 

Quai34

Junior Member
Hi Guys,
I read all the 3 pages being very interested since I discovered them because Rob Brown on his weekly video talked about why he's no longer with Vic Firth an now with Promark. I bought one pair of classic 5 A foregrain and like them but in this thread, there is no many proposal that I haven't even seen in the storesl that I'm a bit lost?
For a drummer trying to discover what they have to offer, let say, I will buy 5/6 different sticks, no worry about the price, what would they be?
Thanks
 

belairien

Silver Member
After the D'Addario take over, I started getting a lot of chipping tips and tips breaking off. Tried a few other brands and loved Vater sticks.

Vater's Pro Rock and LA 5A are my favorite sticks, mostly use the LAs. They seem to have a higher moisture content or something giving them a little more flex and durability.

Here is a 5B that took months of hard rimshots in a loud metal band I was in. Could not break it by playing.
FB_IMG_1601600314987.jpg
 

johnwesley

Silver Member
Uh.....NO. Only sticks I've found that work for me are Vater Goodwood. Period. Last forever. Hardly ever break. Great price through Sweetwater. 12 pairs $40. I will never use any other stick. Ever.
 
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