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Second (gig) Drum Kit Recommendations

posted on #1
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Calling drummers of Wikiloops....

I need (OK, want!) to get a second kit for gigging so I don't have to pull apart my studio for gigs and rehearsals. I can't try out stuff here so I'll be getting it through Thomann as the nearest drum shops are half of Spain away! I'm going 6 to 7-piece (not for a big kit but for choice per-gig as I do jazz gigs as well as rock and fusion). I don't really want to go too mad, otherwise I'd just buy a Ludwig beast and have done! So I've set myself a maximum budget of €1500 for the shells - I realise a second set of hardware, etc., is going to add quite a bit more...

I've narrowed it down to the following:
- Gretsch Catalina (all maple)
- Tama Superstar (all maple)
- PDP (all maple)
- Pearl Decade (all maple)
- Mapex Armory Studioease (maple/birch - less tempted as my 9000 is birch)

Any thoughts or opinions? At the moment, I'm leaning towards the Catalina or Superstar with PDP a close second...
Edited by mpointon on December 16 2022 11:24
If you make a mistake, do it again and make it look like you meant to do it!
posted on #2
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Joined: 20.07.16
I have always relied on the Service kit. Maybe I ask for a configuration as I want it. I'm just taking the snare and cymbals. At the sound check, tuning the toms and the bass drum has never been a problem. I've always solved it like this.
Edited by Ezdrummer on December 16 2022 18:28
posted on #3
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Given your avatar I'm surprised you aren't looking at the Stage Custom......unless you want to avoid birch as you have that with the 9000. The SC is priced like a throw away kit yet punches above its weight class for a gig kit especially if you will be mic'd.

I would go Superstar or Catalina from that list.

That being said, I would see what I could grab used with that same price point as you can snag a really nice mid level to professional kit on the used market and not worry about putting the first scratch on it.

The challenge with these intermediate level kits is the stock heads usually are "meh". So I would also factor in head changes in my budget so you can get something you are used to tuning and using.

Good luck
Know a little about a lot and a lot about a little.
posted on #4
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River19 wrote:
Given your avatar I'm surprised you aren't looking at the Stage Custom......unless you want to avoid birch as you have that with the 9000. The SC is priced like a throw away kit yet punches above its weight class for a gig kit especially if you will be mic'd.

I would go Superstar or Catalina from that list.

That being said, I would see what I could grab used with that same price point as you can snag a really nice mid level to professional kit on the used market and not worry about putting the first scratch on it.

The challenge with these intermediate level kits is the stock heads usually are "meh". So I would also factor in head changes in my budget so you can get something you are used to tuning and using.

Good luck


You'd be right on the Birch thing...

Funnily enough, Catalina or Superstar are still topping my list. Heads will always be changed - I never expect much from stock heads. Although my purchase has been shelved whilst I get my Spaun kit shipped over from the UK (which has a full compliment of Gibraltar hardware and Zildjians with it) which I'll likely sell to finance my new kit (I can't get three kits past the other half!). I could stick with the Spaun kit but ,apart from the kick drum which is a monster, I find it a bit 'meh'.
If you make a mistake, do it again and make it look like you meant to do it!
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