Upgrading my DW Design series kit to Ludwig classic OAK or Maple

Justinhub2003

Well-known member
Hi All

Im going to be upgrading my Design series kit to one of Ludwig's new Classic Oak kits (formerly Keystone X) or Ludwig Classic Maple.

Classic Oak: https://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/CO422-TW--ludwig-classic-oak-mod-22-4-piece-shell-pack-tennessee-whiskey
Classic Maple: https://www.guitarcenter.com/Ludwig/Classic-Maple-4-Piece-Mod-Shell-Pack-with-22-Bass-Drum-Vintage-Black-Oyster-Pearl-1500000217105.gc

Classic Oak is: $2109 (deal worked with Sweetwater)
Classic Maple is: $2225.00 (via 16% coupon from guitar Center)

Few Questions I have are:
1. Are these good upgrades from the design series?
2. Do you prefer the Oak or Classic Maple?


Really torn on this decision and I've been thinking about which kit to pull the trigger for the better part of today. Guitar center coupon expires tomorrow so I need act today.
 

Jasta 11

Well-known member
You get 2 completely different sounds from oak and maple. Have you heard any sound samples from each one to help narrow what you are looking for?
 

Blisco

Senior Member
I owned a Keystone kit for nearly 7 years. Great, great kit and super solid in sound and build. I "upgraded" to a CM last summer and it is everything I wanted it to be. Funny thing is, it's not really an upgrade, it's a lateral move from Oak to Maple. Either kit is wonderful and you won't go wrong with either.
 

Benthedrummer

Junior Member
Jeez, I'd imagine when you are dealing with kits at that high end, I dunno if you could really "upgrade".

You lucky thing!
 

larryace

"Uncle Larry"
A vote for the maple drums.

More classic than oaks.

Oaks are for more specific tastes I'd say.

They never did anything for me, but I am referring to the Yamaha Oak Customs only.
 

Justinhub2003

Well-known member
Jeez, I'd imagine when you are dealing with kits at that high end, I dunno if you could really "upgrade".

You lucky thing!

ha You wouldn't believe this steal that I got for the Design series kit. I bought a PDP Concept maple kit from GC for 399 bucks, I had it for 4 months, then the design series kit, just kept dropping in price and they couldn't move the kit for some reason. I ended up trading the PDP kit back to Guitar center plus a Throne and a bottom hi hat of a Paiste 900 straight up for the brand new Design series. Essentially paid like 500 bucks

And I go to guitar center the next week and they are selling the PDP kit used for $549 which is 150 bucks more than I paid new for them.

This is my first time spending over 1200 on a kit before.
 

Benthedrummer

Junior Member
ha You wouldn't believe this steal that I got for the Design series kit. I bought a PDP Concept maple kit from GC for 399 bucks, I had it for 4 months, then the design series kit, just kept dropping in price and they couldn't move the kit for some reason. I ended up trading the PDP kit back to Guitar center plus a Throne and a bottom hi hat of a Paiste 900 straight up for the brand new Design series. Essentially paid like 500 bucks

And I go to guitar center the next week and they are selling the PDP kit used for $549 which is 150 bucks more than I paid new for them.

This is my first time spending over 1200 on a kit before.

Man......in these trying times, go and have at it getting a new kit!

If it brightens up your life, go for it.

If I ever get a Stimulus Package from our government, I'm gonna be all over a Mapex Armory as fast as a granny pouring chicken soup down my throat when I've got a cold.
 

Justinhub2003

Well-known member
The way normally tune is likely in line with how the oak drums wants to sound. Most say that the maple helps tame theo
Man......in these trying times, go and have at it getting a new kit!

If it brightens up your life, go for it.

If I ever get a Stimulus Package from our government, I'm gonna be all over a Mapex Armory as fast as a granny pouring chicken soup down my throat when I've got a cold.

been saving for this upgrade for a while. And I’m still fortunate enough to be working as well as my wife.

but I’ll be ATTEMPTING to sell my design kit, a 22”2002 power ride, a DW collectors series maple snare and some recording gear to help offset the cost a bit
 

Bo Eder

Platinum Member
Please post a video of your playing, preferably on a gig with a band, then I can better help you. It’s entirely possible I may not recommend an upgrade at this time.
 

wildbill

Platinum Member
.....Really torn on this decision and I've been thinking about which kit to pull the trigger for the better part of today. Guitar center coupon expires tomorrow so I need act today.

If you haven't ordered yet, my vote goes for the Classic Maples.

If you have already ordered, enjoy your new kit.
 

Justinhub2003

Well-known member
Please post a video of your playing, preferably on a gig with a band, then I can better help you. It’s entirely possible I may not recommend an upgrade at this time.
If you haven't ordered yet, my vote goes for the Classic Maples.

If you have already ordered, enjoy your new kit.

starting to veer towards classic maple. It’s just the maple kit I can get a deal on, are all wraps.
Just really like lacquer or stain finishes.
 

MrInsanePolack

Platinum Member
Geez, first world problems. I wanna trade my Lamborghini for a Ferrari, which one should I get?

Buy with your eyes. At that price point anything you get will sound good.
 

Justinhub2003

Well-known member
Geez, first world problems. I wanna trade my Lamborghini for a Ferrari, which one should I get?

Buy with your eyes. At that price point anything you get will sound good.


HAHA the DW design series IS NOT a Lambo. Its like an Acura. Looks nice and pretty, has a luxury name, but really its just a Honda or PDP in this case
 

Justinhub2003

Well-known member
I'm comparing $$$. DW is expensive whether you like their sound or not. It's a Lamborghini. You're paying for the name.

Sure but as Explained above, the design kit I have is going for roughly a thousand for the shell pack and I paid 500 brand new because it wasn't selling at Guitar Center
 

DrumEatDrum

Platinum Member
I wouldn't consider it an upgrade. Different, sure, but not But as man upgrade.

As mentioned, you're asking about two very different kits.

Maybe the better question is WHY are you interested in these two kits? Because you're playing them, not us.
 

MrInsanePolack

Platinum Member
Sure but as Explained above, the design kit I have is going for roughly a thousand for the shell pack and I paid 500 brand new because it wasn't selling at Guitar Center
Okay but if some pissed off wife sells her husband's Lamborghini for $50 it's still a Lamborghini right? What you paid doesn't matter.

Would you have traded the PDP for the DWs if they weren't DWs marked way down?
 

DrumEatDrum

Platinum Member
The DW Designer series feature (per the DW website) North American Maple shells

The Ludwig Classic Maple set feature, North American Maple shells.

Different? Sure. Upgrade? no.
 

Justinhub2003

Well-known member
I wouldn't consider it an upgrade. Different, sure, but not But as man upgrade.

As mentioned, you're asking about two very different kits.

Maybe the better question is WHY are you interested in these two kits? Because you're playing them, not us.

I just have been saving for a while now, and have always wanted a high end Ludwig Kit. I have 5 high end ludwig snares and love them all, so just wanted to add a USA Made Ludwig Kit to my collection.

I'm thinking of just buying the Classic Oak kit and also keeping my DW kit. That way I have a both a maple kit and a Oak/Maple Hybrid kit. Feels like the Classic Maple will hold its value longer but I much prefer the looks of the Classic Oak.


Biggest reason for even throwing the Classic Maple kit in the mix is because my 16% off coupon expires soon and nets me 425$ off of a $2650 r kit, whereas Sweetwater wouldn't budge much on the Oak.

Do I need a new kit? Absolutely not. Its a want for sure, but I have some stuff to sell that I hope helps ease the cost.
 

Justinhub2003

Well-known member
The DW Designer series feature (per the DW website) North American Maple shells

The Ludwig Classic Maple set feature, North American Maple shells.

Different? Sure. Upgrade? no.

Sure, its North American Wood but its also built in Taiwan I think. So the QC, shell Molding and stuff like that are likely not on par with DW's custom Shop in California.

I think the DW Performance series would be a lateral move, but a DW Design series to USA made Ludwig Classic maple/Oak seems like an upgrade to me.

I don't dislike my DW kit. But I've played beginner to intermediate level drums my whole life, and wanted just one High end kit while I can afford it.
 
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