Silent drums

Thunderstix

Senior Member
Which companies produce silent drums and cymbals? I don't mean muffling but drums that are 10-15 dB less loud than the average set. I remember my cheap cymbals were softer than the expensive pro line so there must be a way to manufacture silent drums. "Silent" is not the proper term; drums will still be quite loud at minus 10-15 dB.
 

Pocket-full-of-gold

Platinum Member
Mate I've read and re-read this post 5 times and I have to admit I'm completely lost. I'm assuming it's not a joke so I'll bite.

I've never heard of a drum company who advertise drums that are 10 to 15db less that their competitors. I've never heard one claim to be 10 - 15db louder either. A drum is a drum and it's volume is gonna be related to several factors such as size, shell material, hoops and hardware, heads etc....but the biggest factor is gonna be how hard it's struck. I'd suggest either playing softer or investing in an e-kit with a controlled volume in order to decrease volume by 10 - 15db.

As stated, this question has confused me, so if I've missed the point I apologise.
 

Andy

Administrator
Staff member
Which companies produce silent drums and cymbals? I don't mean muffling but drums that are 10-15 dB less loud than the average set. I remember my cheap cymbals were softer than the expensive pro line so there must be a way to manufacture silent drums. "Silent" is not the proper term; drums will still be quite loud at minus 10-15 dB.
Evans hydraulic batter & reso. Job done!
 

Neil

Senior Member
Mesh heads?

Also I remember seeing a 'behind the scenes' of a band making a music video, when the band were miming along to their track the drummer had cymbals that looked just like real ones but were plastic or something. So maybe they exist??
 

konaboy

Pioneer Member
Mesh heads and plastic practice cymbals are the only things I can think of, no acoustic drum company ships with mesh heads that I'm aware of.
 

Thunderstix

Senior Member
Mate I've read and re-read this post 5 times and I have to admit I'm completely lost. I'm assuming it's not a joke so I'll bite.

I've never heard of a drum company who advertise drums that are 10 to 15db less that their competitors. I've never heard one claim to be 10 - 15db louder either. A drum is a drum and it's volume is gonna be related to several factors such as size, shell material, hoops and hardware, heads etc....but the biggest factor is gonna be how hard it's struck. I'd suggest either playing softer or investing in an e-kit with a controlled volume in order to decrease volume by 10 - 15db.

As stated, this question has confused me, so if I've missed the point I apologise.
An acoustic drum from the drummer's position is 100-110 dB average. Rim shots on snare, crashes, open hats and double bass can even go louder. Even soft playing is well above the safe treshold of 85 dB. My goal is to cut volume to 90 dB on average while retaining the full tone, the rebound of sticks and the enthousiasm of playing.

Shell size or material don't reduce a drum by 15 dB. Different materials change "colour" more than volume. Take a K cymbal vs Avedis: they're both similar in loudness but one is dark and the other bright.

10-15 dB is a remarkable reduction, yet 90 dB is powerful enough to drive a band. Mesh heads, brushes and rutes don't only reduce volume, they completely change the feeling, the colour and the rebound. Drums have to be struck with a minimum of enthousiasm, else they don't sound full (think of tapping a tom or feathering the bass). Also, the drummer feels restricted. It's no fun playing when you're afraid to hit the drums.

I can't believe no one thought of producing more gentle drums for small venues and practice.
 
D

DSCRAPRE

Guest
Yeah. I'm pretty sure that your best bet here would be getting an electronic kit and keeping the amplifier on low. The really nice electronics have actual drum heads so they feel like the real deal.
 

Pocket-full-of-gold

Platinum Member
Drums have to be struck with a minimum of enthousiasm, else they don't sound full (think of tapping a tom or feathering the bass). Also, the drummer feels restricted. It's no fun playing when you're afraid to hit the drums.

I can't believe no one thought of producing more gentle drums for small venues and practice.
I hear you. I prefer it when I'm able to really play my drums as opposed to just tapping away on them. But you can still develop a good feel and solid groove with quieter playing and most importantly, maintain your enthusiasm. In fact, it's a good skill to have in your bag of tricks as you'll be more versatile in those situations.

As for gentler drums for smaller venues.....the best I can come up with other than an e-kit is a small jungle kit or something like a Pearl rythm traveller.
 

Fiery

Silver Member
I can't believe no one thought of producing more gentle drums for small venues and practice.
Probably because:
1) There's no need for them, a good drummer can play at lower volumes when necessary.
2) They can't be made.

You can buy a "jungle" type kit with small, thin cymbals and play it with Vic Firth Soft Touch, or just any light type of stick, but that's as far as equipment will get you. The rest is up to you and your technique.
 

Thunderstix

Senior Member
Maybe you should ditch the "Thunderstix", and go with "ReallyLoudWhisperStix"
The name doesn't tell anything. I use Super Jazz MAPLE, not even hickory. Those are the lightest sticks around which don't feel like children sticks. And they suit me fine.

Yeah. I'm pretty sure that your best bet here would be getting an electronic kit and keeping the amplifier on low. The really nice electronics have actual drum heads so they feel like the real deal.
I have an electronic drum. You can check my playing HERE.

It's not exactly loud music, is it. I believe my touch is delicate enough and my techniqie is correct. But when I play the same piece on acoustic drums, it overpowers every small venue or practice session. It's not the sticks, the tuning, the music, my technique nor the room (I play in a studio). It's the bloody drums! I use medium shells and jazz cymbals. Still well over 85 dB.

I played a jungle kit: it sounds and feels pretty thin. Not much less loud but rather flimsy and shrill, lacking body. It's not like turning the volume down on an amplifier.

I think you can admit that with modern amplification, drums don't need to produce >90 dB. There must be a simple technology to keep volume in check without sacrificing feel or colour.
 
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