Stage Customs - Larger sizes or the smaller sizes?

single-ply

Senior Member
I'm getting ready to order what will ultimately be my beater set to be used when I don't want to use one of my two nice sets (nasty clubs, hot outdoor gigs, etc). It will be a Yamaha Stage Custom and they come with either a 20" or 22" bass drum and either a 14" or 16" floor tom. The other sizes are the same.

I hate schlepping around 22" basses, but I kinda like the extra depth they bring to the sound. Not necessarily louder, but more akin to a really good stereo amplifier that has what they call "headroom".

Does anyone reading this have the smaller Stage Custom 20-10-12-14 (bass and toms) and have you been happy with it? I have played and do like the bigger version (22-10-12-16), but haven't played the smaller version.

I Appreciate all opinions
 

Tommy_D

Platinum Member
If you like the 22" sound but don't like carrying it, have the bass cut down to a shallower depth.
 

wildbill

Platinum Member
I had a couple sets with the 20" bass drum.
I chose them for ergonomics though rather than sound. Specifically - for tom placement.
The new sets have toms that are an inch shallower, so that would split the difference.

I like the sound of a 22 better, but the 20 is versatile enough to do pretty much anything.
That said, I felt the bass drum was the weak part of the kit.
The toms were all fine, and unlike most, I even liked the snares.
But I never was satisfied with the sound of the bass drum despite trying several different heads and tunings.
Maybe I'm just not a fan of birch bass drums.
 

PorkPieGuy

Platinum Member
As much as I'm a fan of the 22" kick drum, my travel set is a 20" kick (Ludwig Centennial). It doesn't have all of the "presence" of a 22" kick, but it's really, really close (especially if you put an EMAD on it). I play a lot of smaller venues, and a 20" kick fits nicely, and to get totally silly about the whole thing, a coffee shop or winery crowd is less intimidated by the look of a 20" kick over a 22". It's funny how that works.

My EMPTY 22" hard case is heavier than my loaded 20" kick in a drum bag.

I think my only drawback to your choices is that 16" floor tom. I absolutely love a 16" floor tom, and I've never heard a 14" that can do what a 16" can.

Luckily, my travel kit has a 20" kick and a 16" floor tom, so I get the best of both worlds.
 

MJD

Silver Member
I'm partial to 20 inch kicks myself but i don't like the depth of the Stage Customs. I like a 12-14 inch depth
 

wildbill

Platinum Member
I'm partial to 20 inch kicks myself but i don't like the depth of the Stage Customs. I like a 12-14 inch depth

Ya - that too.
I was looking to cut down the 17" depth to about 14 or so, but sold it off before I did anything about it.
 

JosephDAqui

Silver Member
I have the smaller one (20-10-12-14) and I play in a brutal metal band - it cuts through perfectly, maybe too much (had to add more sound padding to the studio).

I use a Gmad on the batter with the smaller ring and an EQ Pad lightly against the batter, along with and EQ3 on the resonant side plus a kickport. G2 coated on batters, Resonant glass on resos.

Couldn't be happier with this kit, except I have to figure out what gives with the constant detuning - I put sleeved washers on all lugs and changed out all the 1.6 hoops for 2.3's.
 

T_Weaves

Silver Member
I vote neither unless of course you like the sound of birch. I bought a new set of SC's with a 20" bass drum for the exact reason you're speaking of ( beater kit etc. ) and quite frankly I hated them. I couldn't wait to get rid of them, which I did. I know some people in here think they're great but they didn't do anything for me. Just sayin'......if you haven't tried a birch kit, you may want to before you buy one.
 

alparrott

Platinum Member
I have a Stage Custom with a 20" kick, and although it's the first generation with the mixed wood, not all birch, I never felt that I was missing anything. It was the specific sound and feel I wanted in that kit. I still will pull it out if I'm looking for a modern, punchy sound with a quick feel (my other set has a 14x22 3-ply kick, so completely different animal).

For gigs where you want a beater kit, it's not likely to be an issue anyways. If you were going to obsess over the sound of the kick drum, you'd bring your top-shelf kit. At the sorts of gigs where you use a beater kit, the difference between 20" and 22", and $600 and $6000 kit are often offset by the sound system, atmosphere, and stage volume.
 

TK-421

Senior Member
I have a Stage Custom bop kit which I use for jazz, and the only thing I don't like about it is the fact that they only put 6 lugs per side on the 14" floor tom and 18" bass drum (the 20" kicks get 8 per side, so you're safe there). Tuning-wise, it's not really an issue with the kick, but I was having an issue with the floor tom holding its tuning with the thin 1.6mm hoops and extra spacing between lugs (since there are only 6 per side). So I upgraded the floor tom hoops to 2.3mm, and the problem was solved.

I haven't played one with a 20" kick, but I have a Gretsch Renown with a 20x16 kick, and that sounds good tuned medium-low with a slightly tighter resonant head. I imagine with the right heads and tuning, the 20" Stage Custom Birch should sound good. If you get that one, just be prepared to upgrade the hoops on the 14" floor tom.
 

Dutch

Senior Member
I'm getting ready to order what will ultimately be my beater set to be used when I don't want to use one of my two nice sets (nasty clubs, hot outdoor gigs, etc). It will be a Yamaha Stage Custom and they come with either a 20" or 22" bass drum and either a 14" or 16" floor tom. The other sizes are the same.

I hate schlepping around 22" basses, but I kinda like the extra depth they bring to the sound. Not necessarily louder, but more akin to a really good stereo amplifier that has what they call "headroom".

Does anyone reading this have the smaller Stage Custom 20-10-12-14 (bass and toms) and have you been happy with it? I have played and do like the bigger version (22-10-12-16), but haven't played the smaller version.

I Appreciate all opinions
I have the SC in a 20/10/12/14 configuration but supplemented it with a 16.

Dutch
 

basset52

Senior Member
I have the SC's in 12" rack 16 " Floor tom and 20" bass drum.I really like playing them. That has a bit to do with my ability to get the rack tom exactly how I like it . Hauling around the 20" x 16" birch kick is a dream compared to my 22"x 18" Tama birch/bubinga.
 

starclassicsilver

Junior Member
I don't know if this is much help but I have the 22" bd with 14" hanging floor tom Stage Custom. Bought it to leave set up in practise room. Love that kit but like everyone would prefer a shallower bass drum. I use a 10" rack tom and it goes so well with the 14" floor...
 

Tamaefx

Silver Member
For small venue, 20x16 and small floor Tom seems to be an advantage. It's easier to carry of course, but when you lack stage depth, it's great too. I don't know specifically the Yam, but a 20", with no muffling and not too big a hole can have a lot of presence in a small venue.
When I play In pubs, I don't take the 16", I take the 14" hanging floor, which is enough and more practical (1up 1down) I don't have 20 bass drum, but I stuff more my bass drum for pubs.
 

STXBob

Gold Member
I haven't taken my 22" kick / 16" floor out of the gig bags since I got my Ludwig Signets.

Well, except to snap pics to try and sell it. ;-) Know anyone who wants a Mapex Meridian Maple?

Seriously, there's nothing I can't do with a 12" rack, 20" kick, and 14" floor that I could do with the 5-piece except have a 10" tom voice. Yeah, the 16" is more growly than the 14", but nobody but me would notice. It's not like the guitarist ever turns around and says, "Man, that floor tom sounds anemic."

And the Signets are VERY MUCH lighter than the Mapex. Which I appreciate at 2AM after the gig.
 

Les Ismore

Platinum Member
I'm getting ready to order what will ultimately be my beater set to be used when I don't want to use one of my two nice sets (nasty clubs, hot outdoor gigs, etc). It will be a Yamaha Stage Custom and they come with either a 20" or 22" bass drum and either a 14" or 16" floor tom. The other sizes are the same.

I hate schlepping around 22" basses, but I kinda like the extra depth they bring to the sound. Not necessarily louder, but more akin to a really good stereo amplifier that has what they call "headroom".

Does anyone reading this have the smaller Stage Custom 20-10-12-14 (bass and toms) and have you been happy with it? I have played and do like the bigger version (22-10-12-16), but haven't played the smaller version.

I Appreciate all opinions


If you hate schlepping a 22 BD around you'll love the 20" SC, mine is 29 lbs in a bag with a DW slide track mount, internal mic and a BASS PLATE. Full front head the sound is adequate. Best beater kit I've played, lightest, easiest to set up. Guessing w/o the extras the SC 20 BD will weigh around 25 lbs bagged.

You 'can' get 14" 6 hole S-HOOPS, they're available, have them on my 14" FT.
 
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