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Author Topic: Time to make the jump  (Read 1547 times)

TheSteve

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Time to make the jump
« on: November 07, 2008, 05:53:47 pm »

After much deliberation and weeks of trolling these forums I've decided I'm going to make the jump and buy myself a Zendrum.  I can't wait to get my hands on one of these things and start the HUGE learning curve.  Having played guitar for 16 years I'm sure i can pick up the dexterity easy enough, but I've got about zero experience on a standard drum set.  The timing is there but the hands and feet don't work together  :D

I look forward to the challenge and can't wait to start jamming with some friends.  So few drummers in our circle of friends it's usually the only limiting factor of how often we can get together. 


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Tom Roady

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Re: Time to make the jump
« Reply #1 on: November 08, 2008, 09:30:19 am »

JUMP!!!! You are going to love the Zendrum....and don't be afraid of the learning curve...I believe it will come relatively quickly for you...and remember we are all here to help in anyway we can....the Tribe is here for you.."the mayor"
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TheSteve

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Re: Time to make the jump
« Reply #2 on: November 09, 2008, 10:00:51 am »

I've got dozens of questions for you veteran Zendrummers but I'm trolling through old posts here to keep from boring you with the same beginner questions being asked time and time again. 

That being said, I'm starting the process of selecting what equipment I need to be ready to go the day the ZD arrives.  My goal here is 100% for live jam situations, some small scale basement scenarios and small bars for open jam sessions with friends...at least at first.

For the first bit of the learning curve I'll be using a low end drum machine (http://www.rolandus.com/products/productdetails.aspx?ObjectId=116&ParentId=69)we use in desperate situations of no drummers available (the shoes I can hopefully fill soon).  I plan on plugging this in to one of 2 practice guitar amps I have laying around collecting dust, a Fender 1 12 or a very old Peavey 2 12.  This is just the day 1 practice / learn 2 play setup, but i have some questions about sound modules first and foremost.

Through reading here and talking to a few people at the dreaded Guitar Center it's obvious that the Roland TD-20 is the premier module of choice, but an expensive item for a beginner.  I'm wondering why i see no mention of Alesis DM 4 / DM 5 and only a few references to people using the DM Pro? The local idiot in the Drum dept. at Guitar Center said he thought the drum sounds from the DM 5 were lackluster and tried steering me toward an SPD-20 and far away from a TD-20.

From searching on E bay I'm guessing I'll end up going with a TD-10 or TD-12 once I get to the point where I feel I need better sounds than the low end drum machine has and get closer to playing outside of the safety of my own basement.

So, i guess my initial questions to the experienced Zendrummers are:
     Is the Alesis DM 4 / DM 5 a lackluster module at $200, when i could get a TD-10 for $600ish?
     Is the TDW expansion for the Rolands overkill for a beginner? or worth the extra investment?
     Is the SPD-20 adequate by itself for the Zendrum?
     Last but not least, is there anything I'm overlooking for a very simplified set-up for day 1? ZD midi to  Drum machine with 1/4" plug to practice amp?

Thanks a ton for any feedback and I can't wait to get this thing rolling in a few weeks!!!

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timecutter

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Re: Time to make the jump
« Reply #3 on: November 10, 2008, 12:44:06 pm »


Prepare yourself to want a beefier amp.  The guitar amps will probably not get ya where ya want to go.  Most zendrummers are using keyboard amps or PA setups, some using Bass amps - search the forum here for the discussions of amps.  I have a Peavey Studiopro (a single 12") which is a nice little guitar amp, but doesn't work well for my zendrum.  Not enough bass punch.  For practice and small gigs I've been using a Roland KC 350 - which is a single 12" with a tweeter in a closed back box, which I've found satisfactory for small rooms.   These days I'm drooling over the Barbetta amps - recently some nice things have been said here about bass amps.   

welcome & good luck

Mark


 
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rsanto

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Re: Time to make the jump
« Reply #4 on: November 12, 2008, 08:30:53 am »

I used a Roland TD-8 at first and TD-20 now.  Yes, I think the expansion for the TD-20 is overkill.  The advantage of a simple setup with a Roland module is that you can take advantage of a wealth of information on www.vdrums.com.   To get the Roland module to perform optimally, check out www.vexpressionsltd.com.  Here you can purchase tweaked kits and save weeks of frustration learning about the multitude of effects that the Roland has, but are not evident in the pre-loaded factory kits. 
A guitar amp will work, but there won't be much "low end".  I have an older Roland KC500 keyboard amp that I use as a monitor. 
Don't get nuts and start messing with the Zen's settings right away.  I learned to play it as configured when built, and I'm comfortable with it.  I just assign different instruments to pads when necessary. 
Get used to hearing "What is that thing?!"
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TheSteve

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Re: Time to make the jump
« Reply #5 on: November 14, 2008, 05:39:22 pm »

Oh yeah, I'm very aware that the small guitar amp I have isn't going to cut it for long! I figure first priority is sound modules, and I'm definitely leaning away from the laptop direction.  I figure once I develop a bit of musicianship and am ready to start jamming with some friends I'll go to Guitar Center and rage out a few setups.  I'm kind of leaning towards the PA setup for now, from reading a few posts here and there i think having my own monitor will be beneficial.  Those Barbetta amps do look pretty sexy, but without being able to give one a dry run I don't know if that's an option as of yet. 

Thx for the links to the Roland site too rsanto, I'm sure those will be quite helpful in a few weeks !

Any more opinions / reviews are much appreciated, thanks again.....Steve.

EDIT:  I've also read every post dating back to '06 pertaining to sounds / amps...but I'm still starved for new info and experienced opinions.
« Last Edit: November 14, 2008, 05:41:20 pm by TheSteve »
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drshark

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Re: Time to make the jump
« Reply #6 on: November 15, 2008, 09:36:42 am »

Hey all,

Just wanted to jump in on this to give some imput. I have the Roland TD -20 kit with the new expansion board and a ZX. I  think that the expansion board does offer some good stuff. There are more dynamic drum sounds and it is fun to mess around with them. Is it worth the money? I am really not sure that it is, unless you are the type of person who has to have the latest technology out there, and money is no object. I hear from alot of folks that the TD-20 module is the easiest to transport and set up with less failures, and that is probably true. However, if the sound quality is really important, and money is REALLY no object, than you would be more intrigued with the Muse Recptor with the BFD software. Mr. Emrich has done a spectacular job with those programs obtaining really amazing sound dynamics that are so real to life. The Roland does not provide those nuances. The Muse is a heavey piece of equiptment and has been know to crash and burn. Ultimately, it comes down to preference, price, and technical abilities. It is amazing to have such technology to have to pick from, but it does lead us to more questions regarding our purchases. I would love to have the Muse set up because of the amazing sound quality, however, we just can't have it all, and play it all. I have a real  job to deal with too. Also, for those who are involved with the Roland TD 12 or 20, there is an excellent DVD out to purchase that is really excellent to help you out. Lastly, I really enjoyed "The Mayors" recent post. I had the priveledge of hearing Mr. David Haney ( Inspector 109) play that drum kit. He seems to enjoy playing it alot. He is amazing !!!!

Good Luck, Hope this helps.

Mark
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