Sonor Designer or DW Collectors?

dr_flam

Junior Member
Sonor shells with rings and DW shells are almost identical as far as sound is concerned (because of the construction).

Now, the designers will most likely have straight shells. What you need to do now is to find out what floats your fancy more.....the straight shell or the thinner with rings shell.

They're going to sound slightly different with the straight shell having a bit more bite and the rings shell having a "boomier" sound.

Cheers,
D
Right Derek! May I add some more? :)
Since I owned both a dw collectors and a Sonor Delite, I could compare the sounds of the toms with same heads and same tuning. I found the Delite shell having a more focused sound (probably due to slightly different bearing edges). The dw shells have more overtones.... I found them a bit richer in overtones... a bit "noisy".... but a question of taste of course....
As to the designers.... you are right they have completely different shells than the dw. Being thicker and with no focus rings the sound will be more "softer" given you compare maple vs. maple. Bubinga is another story...... :)

all the best!

M.
 

Andy

Administrator
Staff member
Well.. matte can usually look better than the hi gloss.. IMO.

Not too common finish.
IMHO, I agree. Many a nice veneer made to look a bit "plasticy" by high gloss lacquer/polycoat.

Art, some well applied & buffed wax would really make those shells pop, whilst maintaining their naturally subtle finish. Just MO :)
 

Grolubao

Senior Member
Just curious: Any reason for buying such an expensive kit when you can have a custom one made for you in a boutique shop like Guru?
 

Power Tom

Senior Member
Just curious: Any reason for buying such an expensive kit when you can have a custom one made for you in a boutique shop like Guru?
great question. I did look at some custom shops before I pulled the trigger. A few reasons:

- Guru aren't shipping yet according to their website and I have no prior experience of them. Ive owned a Sonor before.

- Gurus website says 4 shells will be around £4k, whereas I can get double the number of shells for that one the 2nd hand market. These Sonors have never been played and are immaculate.

- Im not that into wood hoops and a lot of the custom shops I looked at used generic readily available metal hoops / hardware, making it a bit less special IMO

- I wanted 2 bass drums, have you seen the price of those in a custom shop? :)
 

Grolubao

Senior Member
great question. I did look at some custom shops before I pulled the trigger. A few reasons:

- Guru aren't shipping yet according to their website and I have no prior experience of them. Ive owned a Sonor before.

- Gurus website says 4 shells will be around £4k, whereas I can get double the number of shells for that one the 2nd hand market. These Sonors have never been played and are immaculate.

- Im not that into wood hoops and a lot of the custom shops I looked at used generic readily available metal hoops / hardware, making it a bit less special IMO

- I wanted 2 bass drums, have you seen the price of those in a custom shop? :)
The bass drum argument is a fair point, regarding the toms you can only play so many different toms... Typically how many toms do you use at the same time in your setup?

I ask this because I also have a Yamaha Maple Custom with 4 toms and I always end up playing just 3 toms.
 

Andy

Administrator
Staff member
great question. I did look at some custom shops before I pulled the trigger. A few reasons:

- Guru aren't shipping yet according to their website and I have no prior experience of them. Ive owned a Sonor before.

- Gurus website says 4 shells will be around £4k, whereas I can get double the number of shells for that one the 2nd hand market. These Sonors have never been played and are immaculate.

- Im not that into wood hoops and a lot of the custom shops I looked at used generic readily available metal hoops / hardware, making it a bit less special IMO

- I wanted 2 bass drums, have you seen the price of those in a custom shop? :)
All good & valid reasons, but some clarification if I may.

1/ We are shipping, but that's not reflected on the website yet, simply because we're waiting for photography.

2/ Agreed on price. Second hand drums are a much more economical proposition, but there again, we're not comparing apples to apples. Industry leading innovative solid shell technologies & bespoke low mass UK made hardware has a price premium due to vastly different costs. Quite a difference in performance though too :)

3/ Our special solid wood hoops are only one option. Just about any hoop configuration is available.

As a side note, you're most welcome to visit our modest showroom/demo room anytime you like (by appointment) & try the full range of kits & snares without any obligation or "sales" pressure whatsoever. It opens fully in June :)
 

Grolubao

Senior Member
All good & valid reasons, but some clarification if I may.

1/ We are shipping, but that's not reflected on the website yet, simply because we're waiting for photography.

2/ Agreed on price. Second hand drums are a much more economical proposition, but there again, we're not comparing apples to apples. Industry leading innovative solid shell technologies & bespoke low mass UK made hardware has a price premium due to vastly different costs. Quite a difference in performance though too :)

3/ Our special solid wood hoops are only one option. Just about any hoop configuration is available.

As a side note, you're most welcome to visit our modest showroom/demo room anytime you like (by appointment) & try the full range of kits & snares without any obligation or "sales" pressure whatsoever. It opens fully in June :)
Sure, second hand are a much more economical proposition, but when someone drops 5 grand on a used kit, somehow I can't avoid feeling dull. Sure it is in good condition, sure it's loads of drums, but still... 5 grand for a used kit...
 

Andy

Administrator
Staff member
Sure, second hand are a much more economical proposition, but when someone drops 5 grand on a used kit, somehow I can't avoid feeling dull. Sure it is in good condition, sure it's loads of drums, but still... 5 grand for a used kit...
A used price of £5,000 ($8,400USD) is a lot of money, but given the collectibility & reputation of those drums, their condition, & coupled with the number of pieces, I think the price is fair. They were very expensive drums new. Ok, the gold hardware somewhat limits their resale appeal (even though new, that attracted a premium), but I think they'll hold their value fairly well going forward. It is effectively two kits.
 

Smatch

Senior Member
Awesome kit power tom. That designer that Artstar posted is my old maple light. Man do I miss that kit. The way you described the sound as being nearly devoid of nasty overtones to me is the hallmark of the German made SONOR drums. I've owned vintage beech, thin birch, vintage maple, maple light and heavy beech and despite the timber differences and shell thickness they all share the trait of being pure and uncluttered sounding drums. In my opinion they are hands down the best sounding ply drums on the market. I would advise you to stock up on the knurled rubber rings as they can dry out and crack. Great choice enjoy.
 

Power Tom

Senior Member
The bass drum argument is a fair point, regarding the toms you can only play so many different toms... Typically how many toms do you use at the same time in your setup?

I ask this because I also have a Yamaha Maple Custom with 4 toms and I always end up playing just 3 toms.
I currently play 8,10,12 & 14 and use every single one of em:)

All good & valid reasons, but some clarification if I may.

1/ We are shipping, but that's not reflected on the website yet, simply because we're waiting for photography.

2/ Agreed on price. Second hand drums are a much more economical proposition, but there again, we're not comparing apples to apples. Industry leading innovative solid shell technologies & bespoke low mass UK made hardware has a price premium due to vastly different costs. Quite a difference in performance though too :)

3/ Our special solid wood hoops are only one option. Just about any hoop configuration is available.

As a side note, you're most welcome to visit our modest showroom/demo room anytime you like (by appointment) & try the full range of kits & snares without any obligation or "sales" pressure whatsoever. It opens fully in June :)
Thanks, can I make a suggestion to change the text on the website? "Due for release in Spring 2014" sounds like it would be Christmas before I would get a kit to me:)

I thought long and hard and I watched all your videos. At the end of the day, Im an old rocker who's used to shiny black Jap kits and your whole vibe is very indie / jazzy / cool kids / 4 piece / white coated heads / mumford & sons etc. Im just not that cool:)

Sure, second hand are a much more economical proposition, but when someone drops 5 grand on a used kit, somehow I can't avoid feeling dull. Sure it is in good condition, sure it's loads of drums, but still... 5 grand for a used kit...
Are you my wife? :) It was up for 5,300 and I knocked a grand off for the snare and then bartered from there. I also got 500 worth of hard cases chucked in for free. I did alright, I hope! Don't feel dull for me, Ive got sticker shock as it is! This kit was 8k new by the way and its not a used kit. It is unplayed and essentially brand new.

Awesome kit power tom. That designer that Artstar posted is my old maple light. Man do I miss that kit. The way you described the sound as being nearly devoid of nasty overtones to me is the hallmark of the German made SONOR drums. I've owned vintage beech, thin birch, vintage maple, maple light and heavy beech and despite the timber differences and shell thickness they all share the trait of being pure and uncluttered sounding drums. In my opinion they are hands down the best sounding ply drums on the market. I would advise you to stock up on the knurled rubber rings as they can dry out and crack. Great choice enjoy.
Thank you. Any advice on heads?

A used price of £5,000 ($8,400USD) is a lot of money, but given the collectibility & reputation of those drums, their condition, & coupled with the number of pieces, I think the price is fair. They were very expensive drums new. Ok, the gold hardware somewhat limits their resale appeal (even though new, that attracted a premium), but I think they'll hold their value fairly well going forward. It is effectively two kits.
How much do you reckon that would have been extra? Im guessing around 1500 as the kit was 8k and the list in the catalogue was 7000 USD in 2005
 
T

The SunDog

Guest
It. DW then add layers of false advertisement such as "FAR SUPERIOR DRUMS BECAUSE WE ARE UBER EXPENSIVE" and people buy into the hype. Just how they work. This is coming from a previous DW kit and snare owner.
Oh yeah, I remember that ad campaign. That one was my favorite. Couple things, the Camco pedal had a strap, DW made it a sprocket and chain. Two, DW shells never copied Camco, they simply used the same hardware because they puchased the Camco machinery.Three, when DW started making drums Premier was owned by Yamaha and its visionary owner was gone. You DW haters forget that its a company that started with two guys building drums sets in a garage behind their teaching studio. The great success they've had has become the reason you don't like them. If they didn't make great drums they'd still be teaching lessons. Its a company that cares a great deal about making drums and it is still run by those same two guys. Their visionary leader is still at work, and he still puts his hands on every Collectors kit. So hate them if you want to, but don't make up stuff to back up your point. Who knows, maybe one day DW will be owned by a holding co. or large corporation like your drums are. Maybe you'll like them then.
 

Power Tom

Senior Member
Removing all the hardware is best. It's not essential, but it does make the job a lot easier. Additionally, if you have a bare shell to work with, it's easier to get an even shine without wax getting caught up around gaskets & other trap points.

Ok, it's a bit of work, but it's a risk free solution, protects your drums really well, & brings out the best in the veneer. You could always do a half job with off the shelf furniture polish, but the results aren't as satisfying. Briwax really is the best product out there. We go through 5 litre cans like they're going out of fashion!!! Not cheap stuff, but the best never is :)
Thanks, just saw this. Ill look out for that wax then.

When my wife recovers from the sticker shock on these shells, I may treat myself to a custom bubinga snare to go with it, so I'll keep you in mind.
 

Andy

Administrator
Staff member
Thanks, can I make a suggestion to change the text on the website? "Due for release in Spring 2014" sounds like it would be Christmas before I would get a kit to me:)

I thought long and hard and I watched all your videos. At the end of the day, Im an old rocker who's used to shiny black Jap kits and your whole vibe is very indie / jazzy / cool kids / 4 piece / white coated heads / mumford & sons etc. Im just not that cool:)
Site due to be updated in the next few days. Current lead time is circa 4 months.

I am very interested in your impression of the vibe we put out. I can think of at least one video featuring a 1 up 2 down rock orientated kit with a black ported bass drum head, & the latest video features a 6 piece, very much in a prog style. The next video is of a 24" bass drum, 18" floor tom, 14" mounted tom kit in classic depths, so maybe that will redress the balance. Either way, we don't want to come across as "arty", as the drums are to be gigged & played, not admired. Ultimately, it's all about the sound for us. Thanks for your feelings though, it's useful ;)

Thanks, just saw this. Ill look out for that wax then.

When my wife recovers from the sticker shock on these shells, I may treat myself to a custom bubinga snare to go with it, so I'll keep you in mind.
Sorry, we don't do custom drums usually, except for Origin series kits. In any case, a solid snare would only match/complement your kit finish if it was steam bent. Neither stave or segmented would offer the same grain orientation, & bubinga doesn't steam bend well. You'd be much better off going to one of the ply shell guys & asking them to add a bubinga veneer plus some industry standard lugs. A lot cheaper too, but of course, it will sound like the substrate wood species.

If you wanted a snare, why didn't you take the Sonor?
 

Artstar

Platinum Member
IMHO, I agree. Many a nice veneer made to look a bit "plasticy" by high gloss lacquer/polycoat.

Art, some well applied & buffed wax would really make those shells pop, whilst maintaining their naturally subtle finish. Just MO :)
Yeah... most of your kits probably would NOT look as nice with a gloss.
 

vxla

Silver Member
Oh yeah, I remember that ad campaign. That one was my favorite. Couple things, the Camco pedal had a strap, DW made it a sprocket and chain. Two, DW shells never copied Camco, they simply used the same hardware because they puchased the Camco machinery.Three, when DW started making drums Premier was owned by Yamaha and its visionary owner was gone. You DW haters forget that its a company that started with two guys building drums sets in a garage behind their teaching studio. The great success they've had has become the reason you don't like them. If they didn't make great drums they'd still be teaching lessons. Its a company that cares a great deal about making drums and it is still run by those same two guys. Their visionary leader is still at work, and he still puts his hands on every Collectors kit. So hate them if you want to, but don't make up stuff to back up your point. Who knows, maybe one day DW will be owned by a holding co. or large corporation like your drums are. Maybe you'll like them then.

Great response. I think DW haters are funny, but it does get boring. If someone hasn't played on a set that sounded good, chances are they could use a lesson or two in tuning drums.
 

BacteriumFendYoke

Platinum Member
Great response. I think DW haters are funny, but it does get boring. If someone hasn't played on a set that sounded good, chances are they could use a lesson or two in tuning drums.
I don't think Bo needs any lessons on tuning.

It's just like any other instrument. For some, they work really well and for others they don't. It depends on your own taste and your own touch.

Case in point: when I play bass, my fingers produce quite a bright tone. All of my basses (no matter what strings I use) sound quite bright. As a result, my basses generally have darker tonal characteristics. If I bought a Jazz bass, it would sound very bright. For others, it's the opposite.

With the drums, it's the same. How you habitually strike the head is very unique.
 

Power Tom

Senior Member
Site due to be updated in the next few days. Current lead time is circa 4 months.

I am very interested in your impression of the vibe we put out. I can think of at least one video featuring a 1 up 2 down rock orientated kit with a black ported bass drum head, & the latest video features a 6 piece, very much in a prog style. The next video is of a 24" bass drum, 18" floor tom, 14" mounted tom kit in classic depths, so maybe that will redress the balance. Either way, we don't want to come across as "arty", as the drums are to be gigged & played, not admired. Ultimately, it's all about the sound for us. Thanks for your feelings though, it's useful ;)

Sorry, we don't do custom drums usually, except for Origin series kits. In any case, a solid snare would only match/complement your kit finish if it was steam bent. Neither stave or segmented would offer the same grain orientation, & bubinga doesn't steam bend well. You'd be much better off going to one of the ply shell guys & asking them to add a bubinga veneer plus some industry standard lugs. A lot cheaper too, but of course, it will sound like the substrate wood species.

If you wanted a snare, why didn't you take the Sonor?
I meant 'custom' as in something like a guru snare, rather than a mass produced jap model.

I didn't go with the snare because I don't need it. Maybe in the future I'll look for one that compliments the kit.

I found some beeswax furniture polish in the cupboard. Worked a treat. Made the bubinga 'pop' and brought the grain out and made it look a lot darker too.
 
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