I hope everyone’s been having a good summer so far. Personally, mine’s been going great; I’m volunteering at a daycare for autistic children in Dublin and I’ve working on some musical projects. And, as you can see, I bought a Wuhan china cymbal from Best Buy for about $15. This wasn’t a very serious buy because I found an old Best Buy gift card that still had some money on it, so I thought “Why not?” and bought it. And for those of you who don’t know, $15 for any kind of cymbal is extremely cheap.
And so, as I expected, I pretty much got what I paid for in terms of quality. The cymbal came somewhat dirty with some scratches on it, but nothing too bad. And when I played it, it was surprisingly loud, almost too loud. Louder than all my other cymbals somehow. It sounded very trashy as well. And although I typically enjoy trashy sounds (probably from more expensive cymbals), this china’s tone just sounded cheap. However, I think I might’ve found a use for it in my kit by using it in a stack (two cymbals stacked on top of each other – it can create unique sounds). I put a Wuhan splash on top of it, which dampened the sound a bit and actually sounded alright. I might toy around with it some more later, but I thought I’d share my experience with you guys.
I think the lesson I learned here is that there usually should be a minimum on how much I spend on a cymbal. Although I prefer to buy cheap, good-sounding cymbals, I think this was too cheap. I could barely stand the sound of the china on its own, which isn’t a good sign. However, there are ways around it, like how I used it for a stack. And cleaning it can alter the sound as well. All in all, if you’re seriously looking for a cymbal, I would recommend buying something more expensive.
That’s all for now! Happy drumming!
– Ryan Clark
Today I wanted to go over the basic pros and cons of owning an electric drum set, compared to the common acoustic drum set. Just incase you aren’t familiar with these terms, electric drums are pads that require an amp or headphones to hear the sounds, as they’re electric. Acoustic drums are the real deal, and they’re what electric drum sets attempt to mimic.
I own both types of drum sets (electric- Roland TD-6V acoustic- Ddrum and Meinl) and have played each for quite some time now. The main reason why people choose to buy an electric kit (which are quite expensive I might add) is because they are MUCH quieter. Although it’s still possible to disturb people with it, as I know from first hand experience living in an apartment. And this reason makes sense, considering acoustic drums can be extremely loud. In fact, this is the sole reason I play my electric drums more frequently (no noise curfew).
The large bank of sounds that you can utilize from your electric kit pretty much guarantees that you’ll find at least one drum kit sound you’ll like. Of course, your choices are limited depending on how much money you can spend on it. And although I think the electric kits sound better than my acoustic kit (I’m not that great of a tuner), the feel of an acoustic setup beats the electric kit almost always in my opinion. Acoustic drums just feel great when you hit them. Whatever material the electric kit is made of, it’s just not the same (though it is has a decent rebound). Plus the cymbals on electrics are rubber, which have poor rebound, and you can’t capture all the neat small noises you can get from a real cymbal.
The nice thing about electrics is you can customize a whole plethora of sounds and be playing with an orchestra or a band in no time. I don’t even need to get very technical with my electric kit to be satisfied. Another positive quality is that you can record drums waaay more easily onto a computer through electric kits than acoustic. Acoustics require special, expensive mics, that are positioned appropriately, as well as decent room dynamics to ensure you don’t record echoes. And I’m sure I’m leaving out other vital information about recording acoustic drums because I’m not an engineer. It’s much simpler just to use electric kits for recording drums (although I’m not saying it’s the best way).
These are what I see as being the basic pros and cons for both types of kits. Overall, I’d say nothing beats an acoustic kit. If the circumstances were right, I’d prefer to play my acoustic drums over my electric drums almost every day of the week. However, this is not to say that electric drums are necessarily worse. They can provide functions that acoustic drums cannot. Either way, you can’t really go wrong.