Hello forum readers.
I am interested in Electronic drums (as the title slightly suggests), but have little knowledge about the quality of various products.
I am not interested in acoustic drums, for two reasons:
A) I use only direct sound.
B) No room nor acoustic dampening.
So, do you have any experience about e.drums? Their main purpose is going to be controlling eZDrummer in Cubase via MIDI, i.e. don't care about on-board sounds-samples.
Recommend me the cheapest set for the job. I've looked into that one:
Welcome any help, mush needed.
I went down this road recently. Check this thread and this thread. My reasons were the same as yours - I wanted to record direct, and be able to throw headphones on while practicing. The kit I ended up buying was the TD-4KX2-S:
[VIDEO]http://www.amazon.com/Roland-TD-4KX2-S-Compact-V-Drum-Electronic/dp/B004KCHZ5W]Amazon.com: Roland TD-4KX2-S - Ultra Compact Pro V-Drum Kit Electronic Drum Kit: Musical Instruments[/VIDEO]
- Works perfectly with EZDrummer, the mapping is 1:1 out of the box. Run the MIDI cable into your machine, fire up EZD/Superior and go. I anticipated a bunch of work mapping notes and such, but it worked 100% with zero extra configuration. That was huge.
- Mesh heads are great, and every drummer that's played them likes them a lot better than rubber ones. They have great feel, though you'll need to fart with the sensitivity a bit to get it spot-on for recording. The snare, especially, is way too sensitive in the stock setup, but it's easy to tweak.
- The stock kits sound great. I had a get-together at my place this fall and had drummers on it all day long. For plain old jamming, it gets the job done well. The rock kits sound good, and there are enough oddball kits to screw around on.
- The kick isn't mesh, but it's still really good. I don't see a need to upgrade it any time soon - it's accurate and responsive and works great w/double bass.
- The new model rack that it comes with is all quick-connects, so you can put it together with just a drum key. I upgraded mine to an older, bigger rack that uses allen wrenches, and it's a pain in the ass to adjust. All of the hardware is really well made, and it's cake to take down/set up.
- The stock hi-hat is not very good. I ended upgrading mine to the VH11 which is a million times better. The downside is that the VH11 is expensive (~$400), and uses a regular HH stand, which you'll also want to not-cheap-out-on because you do not want your vHats to spin. I went with a DW5000 for about $200 and it works great. The good news is that if you upgrade your hats, you can use the old hihat pad for a crash/splash.
- You can have two cymbals and a ride, but if you do, you have to sacrifice a zone on your ride to do it. Stock, it's one ride, one cymbal and the hats. I have two cymbals, hats and the ride. (edge/bell only on my ride, no bow.) I don't care because I'm using MIDI and just a beginner, but regular drummers will probably want the extra zone, leaving you with just one crash.
- The stock rack is small. You'll get two toms up top and the floor tom and that's it. I upgraded to the MDS-10 and used a bunch of parts from my TD4 rack to combine the two into a bigger rack.
- The head is non-expandable. It's not a series of 1/4" inputs - it's a serial type harness with only the 1/4" cables that it can use. You CAN use a standard 1/4" splitter to get two triggers on one input, which is what I did. Both pads will make the same sound, but it's nice for having a second crash or extra toms, even if it's just for the feel.
You'll want to get good double-bass pedals. I went with DW3000s and they are great. I also upgraded my snare, and got two more 8" pads for the toms so that I have 3 8s and two 6s. Here's my kit now:
All that said, my advice is to price out what you want and buy the pieces separately instead of getting a complete kit. You can build the exact TD4 kit that I linked on Amazon for about 300 bucks less if you use eBay and don't mind a used pad here and there.
The TD4 is definitely good enough for what I use it for. Down the road I'll probably go with a higher end one with more unique inputs, but for the "cheap" brain it's really not that bad. If you plan to use EZDrummer, it's even better. If you get your tracks down with this kit and want to go nuts with 50 different cymbals and such later on, editing the MIDI is simple.
Hope that helps!