Why does drum tuning seem so difficult? People always tell me I shouldn't have to dampen my drums at all if I tune them correctly, but I've never been able to achieve a satisfactory sound without dampening my drum heads with moongel or duct tape.
jazz drummers won't want to dampen, whereas more rock will usually dampen.
some drums will naturally sound nice, others will sound terrible no matter what you do.
you just have to mess with it until you find the sound you are looking for.
They're right, if you get the drumheads to a certain tension ratio between the top and bottom accounting for the pitch and shell depth, you can get the drum to either sustain for a long time or be really dry and short.
Of course, no one has the time to do that and a lot of very famous drum sounds use muffling heavily anyway.
I have, it's a bitch. Especially the bass drum, tuning that to C# and making it sound good was a nightmare.
The snare is also hard to get right because you have to decide if you want the drum to be in tune when the snares are on or off. Just putting the snares on creates enough tension to make the drum go out of tune by a semitone.
just buy all the individual parts second hand
start with a basic snare, tom, hi-hat, bass and add more stuff to it overtime
this is how I've doing it for the past 3 years and now my drumkit is pretty decent
Drums don't really matter. The things you want to spend your money on are heads and cymbals. The drum shell acts only as an amplifier of the drumhead sound, so if the head sounds like crap it will all sound crap.
When picking cymbals start with the hihat, then pick a ride that goes with the the hihat sonically.
Don't be afraid to experiment with tuning, it'll take hours/days to get them to sound how you want them to sound, don't be afraid to detune the heads completely and keep retuning them until you get the idea of it. In my experience the bass drum is the hardest drum to tune, especially if your looking for that heartbeat type sound. Have fun and walk away once it gets too frustrating!
I used to have a lot of problems tuning, but after a few years of fairly regular head changes it's kind of gone away. These days I just kind of ballpark my toms and kick, and really only focus on making sure that both heads are playing the same pitch. It's mostly a matter of practice.
It helps to use a tension watch. I don't know what mine are tuned to, but they're in tune with each other and not just themselves, and it's because I used a tension watch
tuning drums is heaps harder than tuning any other instrument. There are ways of tuning drums so that tension isn't evenly distributed
it actually works too, which is the mind blowing part. Though I don't think its optimal for drum head longevity.
In my experience you need good shells if you want a good sound without dampening. I think its more about having a perfect bearing edge than anything, and the right ratio between reso and batter head tightness
I'm both a piano technician and a drummer of 15+ years
and I can verify that tuning a piano and getting a drum set into a good unmuffled tuned sound are equally difficult. you need a better ear for the drum set, and it takes more trial and error.
I think there should definitely be a market for professional drum tuners, just as there is for piano tuners
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