Results 1 to 18 of 18

Thread: Newbie looking for help with choosing electronic set

  1. #1

    User Info Menu

    Default Newbie looking for help with choosing electronic set

    Hey, all. Try to make this short and sweet, I'm an upstart trying to learn drums for the first time. Always been an Enthusiast but never had a place to put a drum set. Now that I have my own house I would definitely like to start getting some knowledge so I can be ready when I decide to purchase one.

    The thing I noticing and looking around and seeing what drum sets are the most recommended, seeing as I'm feeling pretty set on an electronic kit, is they seem to be pretty limited. Even some of the top rated sets appear this way, including the one that most appealed to me. Most of the sets I've seen simply include a pair of crashes, occasionally a ride. Are there any sets out there that extend into china and/or splash? Or is this just simply a matter of expansion? How would one go about this? Or are electronic kits just limited to what they appear at the moment? Although I may be new, I would definitely love to have my set be as complex as possible for when I become better.

    Thanks for any help.

  2. #2

    User Info Menu

    Default Re: Newbie looking for help with choosing electronic set

    Why, if you have your own house, are you set on getting an electric kit? Is it family noise considerations? I hope it's not because you're daunted by managing an acoustic set.
    I say this because electronic kits are inherently limited. There's only so many triggers with X number of dynamic responses and presets.
    And the cymbals are simply a joke IMO.
    Acoustic sets are infinite and real cymbals are joyously complex. So many different places and ways to strike and even different sticks and tips for different sounds.
    Yes, it takes a while to learn how to control them and get the sounds you want but it's all part of the journey and so very worth it.

  3. #3

    User Info Menu

    Default Re: Newbie looking for help with choosing electronic set

    Quote Originally Posted by noreastbob View Post
    Why, if you have your own house, are you set on getting an electric kit? Is it family noise considerations? I hope it's not because you're daunted by managing an acoustic set.
    I say this because electronic kits are inherently limited. There's only so many triggers with X number of dynamic responses and presets.
    And the cymbals are simply a joke IMO.
    Acoustic sets are infinite and real cymbals are joyously complex. So many different places and ways to strike and even different sticks and tips for different sounds.
    Yes, it takes a while to learn how to control them and get the sounds you want but it's all part of the journey and so very worth it.
    Partially because my wife is a musician and we've long talked about recording music together and it's more cost efficient and pertinent for us. I don't necessarily plan on becoming a pro, something basic will suit me fine. Would also love to play anytime without disturbing her or neighbors as I'm a night owl. I can always get an acoustic down the line but feel electronic is a better fit for me all around. I'm aware of the limitations in acoustic function, right now I'm just wondering how you can expand these sets to include other pieces, if possible.
    Last edited by DCFan11; 05-17-2019 at 09:07 AM.

  4. #4
    MattyKoff Guest

    Default Re: Newbie looking for help with choosing electronic set

    Just about any drum module you go with should allow for user presets where you can choose for each individual piece of your kit. You will also be able to use your drum module as a midi controller for use with VST software like ezdrummer2 or superior drummer if you have access to a personal computer. You have to shell out nice chunk of dough for the least amount of limitation as far as trigger pads. There are modules that allow for 3 zone trigger pads, and dual zone cymbals with choke but you're going to start getting up there in price.

    I picked up an Alesis Nitro Mesh and I'm honestly impressed with everything it can get away with for $350. Decent dynamic range, Midi functionality... I can use it as a VST midi controller, or I can even control my zoom rt-223 with it paired with a midi mouse.

    As a beginner on a budget I've no qualms with being limited to two dual zone pads, only single zone cymbals of which only one is chokeable. I think I'm going to do a cost effective diy snare and use the stock snare as a 4th tom, which is at least dual zone.

    In a few years I might get something more capable.. but with $50-$200 here and there I'll steadily be upgrading this kit over the next year or two until it's fully tricked out and then i'm likely going to look for a used module and just use the pads I have, swapping them out for dual zone triggers over time to keep the wallet from hurting too much. Personally, I live in a really quiet neighborhood. Kick pedal still too loud for my tastes, which I'm going to do a DIY Roland Noise eater kind of deal.

    I mean, the best E-kit is still not going to be an accoustic kit, but it has its conveniences. I'm just a beginner.. and I'm on a limited budget so the Nitro was a no brainer as first kit for me. I primarily play bass as well, and enjoy that maintenance is mostly going to be a replacing a mesh head here and there.

    GO to a local music store and sit and bang on an accoustic kit and the best e-kits they have on the floor. Either should be fun.. the E-kit will probably be a bit more peaceful for you and those around you as you learn imo. Then again - practice pads help in that regard too. As much as I plan add to this thing it still won't measure up to some of the higher priced options with multiple zone triggers, more kits /sounds to choose from, bigger and mesh kick drum pads.. but it's a nice start with plenty of room to upgrade when I feel like I've earned a better ride, maybe just add an octopad to it. *shrug*

    Just my two cents as someone whose first kit has been an entry level e-kit, planned mostly for home use and not as a primary instrument. It's been enough to give me some serious motivation about the learning and technique developing part of things where I feel like a kid trying to learn how to read and write for the first time while patting my head and rubbing my belly. I will admit while playability might be a little bit limited, these things feel pretty darned good, and I don't think it would be all that difficult to transition to an acoustic kit if i ever felt the need. At the same time, there's something to be said about having 50-100 different kits at your disposal at a few button presses.
    Last edited by MattyKoff; 05-18-2019 at 09:13 PM.

  5. #5

    User Info Menu

    Default Re: Newbie looking for help with choosing electronic set

    Welcome to Drum Chat.

    I've owned a few over the years, even built one myself back in the late 90's. They've come a long way since then.

    I'm not sure about your budget but to me the important things are the number of samples you have and how good do they sound? Are they realistic?

    I also look at quality. If there isn't a good amount of sensitivity you don't get to articulate like you should be able to.

    Last but important I'd look at build quality. I don't want something that falls apart after my first 15 minute drum solo. lol

    You really should find a way to play them and see what they do and if it fits your idea of what you expect.

    Me....I'd have a blast and go full on medium to high end just because I know the expectations are met and exceeded in the use and enjoyment of E-Kits.

    Keep posting questions as your investigation gets going. It's a fun journey just learning about this technology and then bring it home to mama!
    Signature here

  6. #6

    User Info Menu

    Default Re: Newbie looking for help with choosing electronic set

    Quote Originally Posted by Bish View Post
    Welcome to Drum Chat.

    I've owned a few over the years, even built one myself back in the late 90's. They've come a long way since then.

    I'm not sure about your budget but to me the important things are the number of samples you have and how good do they sound? Are they realistic?

    I also look at quality. If there isn't a good amount of sensitivity you don't get to articulate like you should be able to.

    Last but important I'd look at build quality. I don't want something that falls apart after my first 15 minute drum solo. lol

    You really should find a way to play them and see what they do and if it fits your idea of what you expect.

    Me....I'd have a blast and go full on medium to high end just because I know the expectations are met and exceeded in the use and enjoyment of E-Kits.

    Keep posting questions as your investigation gets going. It's a fun journey just learning about this technology and then bring it home to mama!
    I appreciate your response. However, I prefer to be completely aware of what I'm buying before I buy it. I definitely want something specific, and to know everything about it so that when I buy it I might not ever have to buy another one again if I so choose. I've already seen with some of the top ones and would generally have an idea of what I might want to buy, especially with some advice from some folks around here, but right now I guess my first basic question is are there any electronic drum sets that actually allow you to use more than just a couple of crashes for the symbols? Or is there a way to expand them? I really don't want to be restricted to such a small amount of options.

  7. #7

    User Info Menu

    Default Re: Newbie looking for help with choosing electronic set

    Quote Originally Posted by DCFan11 View Post
    I appreciate your response. However, I prefer to be completely aware of what I'm buying before I buy it. I definitely want something specific, and to know everything about it so that when I buy it I might not ever have to buy another one again if I so choose. I've already seen with some of the top ones and would generally have an idea of what I might want to buy, especially with some advice from some folks around here, but right now I guess my first basic question is are there any electronic drum sets that actually allow you to use more than just a couple of crashes for the symbols? Or is there a way to expand them? I really don't want to be restricted to such a small amount of options.

    Fair question and requirement. I would hope you know what you are getting into before you drop a couple thousand dollars on an idea.

    If I were you I would research just the modules to find one that fits your requirements. Back when I built mine, I had an Alesis D4 combined with a Roland TD-5 module and basically built my own kit out of PVC and plywood. (there was a lot of experimentation that went into building an electric kit 25 years ago) but I was determined to have the best I could. With the combination of both modules I was able to have everything I could want with extra channels left open. That allows the ability to add effects like a cowbell, wood block, tambourine, etc.

    Nothing says you can't do that today. You can start by buying the module that meets your demands or gets as close to it as possible. If the module manufacturer makes a drum pad set that fits that needs you're golden.

    If not, get as close as you can and eventually add on an additional module as you go. That can get pricey.

    I know today you can get a fairly decent larger E-kit for a couple grand. I'm not sure what more you'd want but the limit is your creativity and most likely budget.
    Signature here

  8. #8

    User Info Menu

    Default Re: Newbie looking for help with choosing electronic set

    Quote Originally Posted by Bish View Post
    Fair question and requirement. I would hope you know what you are getting into before you drop a couple thousand dollars on an idea.

    If I were you I would research just the modules to find one that fits your requirements. Back when I built mine, I had an Alesis D4 combined with a Roland TD-5 module and basically built my own kit out of PVC and plywood. (there was a lot of experimentation that went into building an electric kit 25 years ago) but I was determined to have the best I could. With the combination of both modules I was able to have everything I could want with extra channels left open. That allows the ability to add effects like a cowbell, wood block, tambourine, etc.

    Nothing says you can't do that today. You can start by buying the module that meets your demands or gets as close to it as possible. If the module manufacturer makes a drum pad set that fits that needs you're golden.

    If not, get as close as you can and eventually add on an additional module as you go. That can get pricey.

    I know today you can get a fairly decent larger E-kit for a couple grand. I'm not sure what more you'd want but the limit is your creativity and most likely budget.
    So do any of these electronic sets come with the extra cymbals or allow extension for them or all they basically just restricted to crashes and occassionaly a ride?

  9. #9

    User Info Menu

    Default Re: Newbie looking for help with choosing electronic set

    Quote Originally Posted by DCFan11 View Post
    So do any of these electronic sets come with the extra cymbals or allow extension for them or all they basically just restricted to crashes and occassionaly a ride?
    In general, most entry level E-kits modules come with 1 Hihat, 1 crash, 1 ride, 2 high toms, 1 floor tom, snare and a kick drum that could be used with a double pedal.

    I had an old Yamaha DTXpress III (2004 technology) that had: 1 high hat, 2 crash, 2 toms. 1 floor tom, snare and kick. This module could NOT be expanded. The voice samples for the different cymbals can be selected and assigned to different pieces of the kit. The ride had 3 zones: bell, bow and edge. The one crash was dual zone: edge and choke. The snare had 3 zones: rimshot, snare and cross stick. The hihat had 3 zones: edge, bow and splash.





    The more expensive Roland modules allow for more expansion.



    This kit is a TD30 and a TD9 combined:

    Last edited by late8; 05-20-2019 at 11:10 AM.

  10. #10

    User Info Menu

    Default Re: Newbie looking for help with choosing electronic set

    Quote Originally Posted by late8 View Post
    In general, most entry level E-kits modules come with 1 Hihat, 1 crash, 1 ride, 2 high toms, 1 floor tom, snare and a kick drum that could be used with a double pedal.

    I had an old Yamaha DTXpress III (2004 technology) that had: 1 high hat, 2 crash, 2 toms. 1 floor tom, snare and kick. This module could NOT be expanded. The voice samples for the different cymbals can be selected and assigned to different pieces of the kit. The ride had 3 zones: bell, bow and edge. The one crash was dual zone: edge and choke. The snare had 3 zones: rimshot, snare and cross stick. The hihat had 3 zones: edge, bow and splash.





    The more expensive Roland modules allow for more expansion.



    This kit is a TD30 and a TD9 combined:

    So does this mean the only way to expand is through more kits rather than more parts? Is it not possible to merely add a China and a Splash to an existing set? Or are there any kits that already contain them? And how does this compare to expansion with an acoustic kit in terms of availability?

  11. #11

    User Info Menu

    Default Re: Newbie looking for help with choosing electronic set

    Quote Originally Posted by late8 View Post
    In general, most entry level E-kits modules come with 1 Hihat, 1 crash, 1 ride, 2 high toms, 1 floor tom, snare and a kick drum that could be used with a double pedal.

    I had an old Yamaha DTXpress III (2004 technology) that had: 1 high hat, 2 crash, 2 toms. 1 floor tom, snare and kick. This module could NOT be expanded. The voice samples for the different cymbals can be selected and assigned to different pieces of the kit. The ride had 3 zones: bell, bow and edge. The one crash was dual zone: edge and choke. The snare had 3 zones: rimshot, snare and cross stick. The hihat had 3 zones: edge, bow and splash.





    The more expensive Roland modules allow for more expansion.



    This kit is a TD30 and a TD9 combined:

    So does this mean that expansion with an Electronic has to be done by kits, rather than by pieces? Are there no kits that come with those pieces already? So is it really not possible for me to simply add two more symbols to make a China and a crash as well? Also, how does this compare in availability for expansion to an acoustic set?

  12. #12

    User Info Menu

    Default Re: Newbie looking for help with choosing electronic set

    Quote Originally Posted by DCFan11 View Post
    So does this mean that expansion with an Electronic has to be done by kits, rather than by pieces? Are there no kits that come with those pieces already? So is it really not possible for me to simply add two more symbols to make a China and a crash as well? Also, how does this compare in availability for expansion to an acoustic set?
    • So does this mean that expansion with an Electronic has to be done by kits, rather than by pieces?

    Both. The expansion of the kit will be determined by how many inputs are available on the module. Example: If your module only has 5 trigger inputs, you're limited to 5 pieces or you can use a signal splitter to add on a second module.

    a.jpg

    b.jpg

    • Are there no kits that come with those pieces already?

    Again in general, most entry level kits come with (1x) Hihat (1x) Crash (2x) High tom (1x) floor tom (1x) ride (1x) snare (1x) kick
    If you want to expand beyond this, the module will have to have the additional trigger inputs to accommodate the added extra pieces. I've highlighted the trigger inputs with boxes. Count how many trigger inputs are highlighted within those boxes and you'll see the issues surrounding expansion. You can assign a china voice sample to your crash cymbal but if you only have one crash input you're limited to using that one voice sample.


    • So is it really not possible for me to simply add two more symbols to make a China and a crash as well?

    Yes, you have to have the trigger inputs to add those on. The more expensive modules can be expanded since they have more inputs or you can assign the different cymbal voice samples to different pieces on your kit.


    • Also, how does this compare in availability for expansion to an acoustic set?

    No comparison. You have limitless expansion capabilities on an acoustic kit just as long as you have space and you can reach each piece.

    rs-165899-TERRY-BOZZIO-2014-Press-Photo-photo-by-Andr-OzgaDSC1193.jpg
    Last edited by late8; 05-22-2019 at 04:13 PM.

  13. #13
    MattyKoff Guest

    Default Re: Newbie looking for help with choosing electronic set

    Most of the lower priced kits right now at least allow for you to add a 4th tom and crash symbol or aux pad. That being said however - most of them also have Line in 1/4" or 3.5mm jacks that allow for running a smartphone, computer, cd player, tv (if it has headphones out) through the drum module's audio signal. Or even another drum module's headphone jack, or mono 1/4th to stereo converter y-cable. So if you look at your kit as one brain + pads, expansion is limited. But ultimately there's nothing really stopping you from adding a second, or even third drum module and then an octapad on top of it and all of the pads they can support later on and have both brains playing out of the same output. It might be slightly more tedious to manage tuning multiple brains for any given song if you change your kits up during a set, and you'd have to spend some time setting up each individual kit and pretty much forego preset kits on the additonal modules, but it's doable. And really not that cumbersome when you consider that if you went accoustic you're stuck with the sound of that kit vs the electronic, where you can have 30-50 kits at your finger tips without having to change your pads out. So, from that point of view - expansion isn't really all that limited. And due to VST's within DAW software and midi triggering, the sounds of pretty much any given kit aren't all that limited either, that limitation is only really there if you are counting on the sounds that come with the drum module.

    I mean.. I'm starting out on a $350 e-kit personally but I already see it growing as I get more comfortable with the kit over time, upgrading the module to a td-17, keeping the nitro around for extra pads/sounds and upgrading/adding trigger pads or upgrading the drum rack or buying more stands. Do be aware however that that kit can still be pretty loud, particularly the kickpad. I'm going to try my hand at some DIY Noise Eaters with some MDF board and raquetteballs or tennis balls, as my kick pedal can be heard through the entire house, with an unfinished basement being like one big hollow space underneath every room in my house. But I haven't gotten any police visits during the times I've been practicing between midnight to 5 am.

    Whether you go accoustic or electric, step one is making the plunge imo. The sooner you do the sooner you might surprise yourself with how quickly you're picking it up, given proper reading material, online resources, practice and maybe some lessons. Most music stores have decent return policies. Play around with a few kits on the floor. Take one home and give it a spin. It at least gets you learning the motions. A practice pad and some sticks might honestly be step one imo. Frankly, I'm pretty impressed with the e-kits of today.. albeit - I'm not some experienced drummer. But for the short time I've been playing.. I'm not sitting here thinking "aw man I should've gone acoustic". It's more like "hey I'm getting pretty decent at this, and I could add this and this and this." I'm honestly quite proud of how much i'm going to be able to trick out my Nitro, much less when I get to the point of buying a TD-17 module and maybe a pad a month to my kit afterwards.

  14. #14

    User Info Menu

    Default Re: Newbie looking for help with choosing electronic set

    Quote Originally Posted by late8 View Post
    • So does this mean that expansion with an Electronic has to be done by kits, rather than by pieces?

    Both. The expansion of the kit will be determined by how many inputs are available on the module. Example: If your module only has 5 trigger inputs, you're limited to 5 pieces or you can use a signal splitter to add on a second module.

    a.jpg

    b.jpg

    • Are there no kits that come with those pieces already?

    Again in general, most entry level kits come with (1x) Hihat (1x) Crash (2x) High tom (1x) floor tom (1x) ride (1x) snare (1x) kick
    If you want to expand beyond this, the module will have to have the additional trigger inputs to accommodate the added extra pieces. I've highlighted the trigger inputs with boxes. Count how many trigger inputs are highlighted within those boxes and you'll see the issues surrounding expansion. You can assign a china voice sample to your crash cymbal but if you only have one crash input you're limited to using that one voice sample.


    • So is it really not possible for me to simply add two more symbols to make a China and a crash as well?

    Yes, you have to have the trigger inputs to add those on. The more expensive modules can be expanded since they have more inputs or you can assign the different cymbal voice samples to different pieces on your kit.


    • Also, how does this compare in availability for expansion to an acoustic set?

    No comparison. You have limitless expansion capabilities on an acoustic kit just as long as you have space and you can reach each piece.

    rs-165899-TERRY-BOZZIO-2014-Press-Photo-photo-by-Andr-OzgaDSC1193.jpg
    Sorry, what I meant by expansion is buying pieces to add. You answered my question by mentioning modules, but how and where do you buy extra actual cymbals? Are these pieces sold individually?

  15. #15

    User Info Menu

    Default Re: Newbie looking for help with choosing electronic set

    Quote Originally Posted by DCFan11 View Post
    Sorry, what I meant by expansion is buying pieces to add. You answered my question by mentioning modules, but how and where do you buy extra actual cymbals? Are these pieces sold individually?
    You can find individual pieces to expand an ekit kit at most online music retailers or visit the factory website for links to factory authorized dealers.

    Here's an example of two ekits (2x modules: 13 pieces) I combined a few years ago to make a double bass rig. The Tama TechStar is from the 1980's and as I mentioned, the Yamaha DTXpress is from 2004. The key to make all of this work is the PA mixing board.







    There was a lot of wiring involved:

    Last edited by late8; 05-28-2019 at 01:40 PM.

  16. #16

    User Info Menu

    Default Re: Newbie looking for help with choosing electronic set

    Not to hijack the thread but.........that Bozzio kit (not to mention the rack) is beyond belief...........that took some thought.
    Gretsch USA & Zildjian
    (What Else Would I Ever Need ?)


  17. #17

    User Info Menu

    Default Re: Newbie looking for help with choosing electronic set

    pictures 010 by Joe D, on Flickr

    pictures 009 by Joe D, on Flickr

    Ok this was my Yamaha DTXTREME lll kit. At the time it was Yamaha's top of the line kit. This is a lot larger then the original kit , I added a bunch of extra pads. However the original kit came with hi-hat, single zone crash , double zone crash , double zone ride and the snare and 4 tom pads were all triple zone pads. This means I could assign a different sound to each zone. So my double zone crash the main part was the crash cymbal sound and I assigned a china sound to the bell. My ride the edge of the ride I put a splash sound , the main part was the ping ride sound and the bell was a heavy rock bell sound.

    Same thing with the tom pads, for each tom I could assign 3 different sounds. I had 8 tom pads that 24 sounds , what I could do with this kit was limitless. So even though the basic kit may only be a 4 or 5 piece with a couple cymbals, check to see if each pad has more than one zone.

    That said if you are just tarting out I strongly recommend starting on a real acoustic drum kit. When learning drums you develop certain muscle memory and doing so on an e-kit is not the same as an acoustic kit. I played and e-kit exclusively for 4 years , when I switched back it took me nearly a full year to get my acoustic chops back up to par. E-kits take a fraction of the effort to play and I found that to be a big problem when coming back to a real kit.

  18. #18

    User Info Menu

    Default Re: Newbie looking for help with choosing electronic set

    Quote Originally Posted by Ricardo View Post
    Not to hijack the thread but.........that Bozzio kit (not to mention the rack) is beyond belief...........that took some thought.
    I was thinking the same thing Ricardo!
    - Tom

    See the new Drum Bum Store!





    When you shop at Drum Bum or BuyGifts.com, you help with the costs of operating DrumChat.com. Please consider patronizing their fine stores. Whether you need unique music gifts for friends or just want a little something for yourself, Drum Bum is the place!

    For coupons and specials, join the Drum Bum mailing list.

    Buy Gifts for Drummers. And don't miss the free Drum Lessons!

Tags for this Thread

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •