(Topic ID: 167632)

Speaking of expensive hobbies... Anyone own a set of Roland V-Drums?


By ghetoprobe

3 years ago



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  • 35 posts
  • 16 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 3 years ago by pappyfromjersey
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#1 3 years ago

More specifically - the 6-piece Roland TD-30KV? I'm in the process of finishing my basement (guess I should start a thread on that, too) and I'm considering purchasing a new drum set for my little recording studio. If you have first-hand experience with any of the V-Drums I'd love to hear your opinion!

I have owned many acoustic sets in the past, but with kids and neighbors I'm kind of over the amount of noise they make. I know, others have suggested using dampening pads on an acoustic set, but those that I've tried just don't give a natural stick response and I'm fairly certain I wouldn't be happy in the end.

For years the TD-30KV's have been $7.5k, but they've recently dropped in price to a "reasonable" $6k. I'm very tempted to finally pull the trigger... thoughts?

TD30KVSet-large (resized).jpg

#2 3 years ago

Sounds like a forgone conclusion ... not if but when type scenario. I say do it! After you pick them up and set up recording room, drop us a link to some of your riffs.

#3 3 years ago

I have a set of used V-Drums, the TD-10 module. Found them on craigslist for 750 and am very happy. However i do not have the Roland hi-hats which make a big difference and are $$$.

#4 3 years ago
Quoted from jeffspinballpalace:

drop us a link to some of your riffs

It's been many, many years since I've played. One of those things that grows on you and you feel lost in life without it. Let me get some practice in before I come on here and embarrass myself!

Quoted from Kratogen:

I have a set of used V-Drums, the TD-10 module

Are you happy with the way the pads respond when you play? And concerning the sound, do you get the "machine gun" effect on the snare? I should really go to my local Guitar Center and put some time on a set.

#5 3 years ago

I have a drummer friend with those, he showed them off to me, very cool, and he's really happy with them.

#6 3 years ago

I'm also interested in this topic. Is this the best solution for a quiet kit? Is it possible to get a smaller kit with maybe just a snare, bass drum and hats.

#7 3 years ago

Yes, but not the standard set.

I use multiple types of heads including Roland, Alesis coated cymbals, and Pearl chain kickers with a proper Roland drum brain. Their two trigger snare is very good. Yamaha or Alesis brains work well too, if you do not want to spend big $$$.

Most ultra players do not use factory sets.

Electronic is preference as V-drum heads are comparable to the same acoustic styles. Cymbals never feel right, though. It does not matter what you try.

I also have acoustic, but take up more space, and my neighbors next door get pissed. Even houses will not isolate the sound if regular drums are used, you need a studio.

#8 3 years ago
Quoted from Aurich:

he's really happy with them.

Great to hear! Is your buddy a professional or does he just play for fun?

Quoted from solarvalue:

Is it possible to get a smaller kit with maybe just a snare, bass drum and hats.

I think you can piece together a set yourself, but I'd imagine it would end up costing you about the same as a full kit. Here's a 5-piece kit with two cymbals. They have cheaper offerings, but they're solid pads and I'd imagine they wouldn't perform nearly as well as mesh pads.

TD11KVSet-large (resized).jpg

#9 3 years ago

No experience with the Roland pads, but drum samples tend to be limiting with older drum brains. BFD3 or SSD software is useful for more realistic sounds. If you don't want to deal with configuring a PC for low latency audio, Pearl is coming out with the Mimic drum brain shortly which is based on the Slate samples.

#10 3 years ago

I've had several of these over the past few years - I am primarily a guitarist / vocalist but do play drums and keys on most of my demos.

The BlackKnight basically said it all (although I do not personally like the Alesis cymbals). There is a *tremendous* difference in the TD-30 brain modules vs any of the other Roland brains, or even any of the competitors. Alesis brains are basically drum machines with triggers added; they do not have the additional programming to catch the nuance of real playing. If you're a well-trained drummer, you will notice the difference.

There used to be a TD-20 which was very similar to the TD-30 in terms of the pads/cymbals, but the 30 is miles better in capability. It will catch your single stroke rolls and ghost notes correctly, and does not use samples for rolls, and your ghost notes can be extremely subtle. It's awesome, no question. Not quite like acoustic drums, but as close as you can get.

This tune may not be your cup of tea exactly, but it was recorded by a colleague, and the drummer did this song using V-Drums -

#11 3 years ago
Quoted from ghetoprobe:

Great to hear! Is your buddy a professional or does he just play for fun?

Just for fun, he played in High School or something.

#12 3 years ago

What about the TD-25K or TD-25KV? Seems like a good mid-range option.

#13 3 years ago

You guys are awesome, thank you! That's really my biggest concern; dropping a ton of money on a full Roland set when there are other options out there for a comparable cost that are a superior product. I don't really mind the overall cost, I just want to do it right the first time. I've already got the DW 9002 pedal and DW 9000 hardware from a previous kit. Sounds like the TD-30 and included shells are the way to go, I just need to decide on which cymbals I like best? I'll definitely do a little research on the Pearl Mimic Module, too.

I've been watching some videos on the TD-30 and the ghost notes, rim shots, etc. all sound pretty amazing. My ears are very sensitive to "unnatural" sound and even the slightest "machine gunning" or electronic cymbal shimmer will drive me absolutely insane. Unfortunately, you can't really hear those things while demoing at Guitar Center.

Rdoyle1978, thanks for the video. Prog-Rock is right up my alley so this is a perfect song for reference. I'll need to put on some headphones tonight to pick up all the nuances. Very helpful guys, thanks!

#14 3 years ago
Quoted from ghetoprobe:

More specifically - the 6-piece Roland TD-30KV? I'm in the process of finishing my basement (guess I should start a thread on that, too) and I'm considering purchasing a new drum set for my little recording studio. If you have first-hand experience with any of the V-Drums I'd love to hear your opinion!
I have owned many acoustic sets in the past, but with kids and neighbors I'm kind of over the amount of noise they make. I know, others have suggested using dampening pads on an acoustic set, but those that I've tried just don't give a natural stick response and I'm fairly certain I wouldn't be happy in the end.
For years the TD-30KV's have been $7.5k, but they've recently dropped in price to a "reasonable" $6k. I'm very tempted to finally pull the trigger... thoughts?

A friend of mine is a drummer with a Chicago Tribute band and he makes a full line of custom drums, Ellis Drums, ever hear of them. His drum store is also called Ellis Drums in St Paul, MN. Check him out.

#15 3 years ago

I've owned a few different sets the highest being the TDK 11's, while they are fun for a while I always end up going back to an acoustic kit and micing them up, nothing compares and for jamming same thing, something important gets lost but its still fun to play and if you into light music then I doubt it will matter much.

#16 3 years ago

Long time Vdrummer here. I've been recording with these for for about 10 years and have toured with them as well.

I use a TD-10 with 8 inch mesh pads all around, I decided to get smaller pads for a smaller foot print. Bigger sizes definitely have a better feel, way more natural. As far as being quieter, try smacking your mouse pad with a wooden spoon HARD. That's about what they sound like. The bigger problem is the foot pedals, as you are basically stomping on the floor. If you are in a basement, it shouldn't be an issue.

With the TD-10 my biggest issue was the sounds themselves, very 80's and not really usable for natural sounding drums. I have been using SuperiorDrummer triggered through MIDI and it's absolutely perfect. The kits are professionally sampled in major studios and you get a great set of options, Ludwig Black Beautys, Slingerlands, K-Series cymbals, etc. If you are setting up a recording rig, definitely look at getting a good sample set. I'm sure the TD-30 is much better than the 10 but the Superior, BFD or Slate sample packs will blow you away. I've been recording as a professional and an amateur for over 15 years now, in some of Canada's biggest studio and these sample packs are what you are hearing on a lot of big releases being put out today.

The thing with the cymbals is that I only have the solid rubber pads but have tried the cymbal shaped triggers. They can't mimic real cymbals in feel yet but you get used to them quickly. With my kit, I adapt my strokes a bit as I still play acoustic kits in bands but the V-Cymbals feel pretty good after a while.

I haven't had a chance to play other shells or pads (Pintech, Yamaha, etc) but I've heard others who have different preferences for those. I think the Roland brains are the best you can get for triggering and looking at the newer shells that come in the TD-30 setup, you would be pretty happy. Definitely spend some time trying them out in a store if you have access.

#17 3 years ago

Carrman, I had never heard of the Superior Drummer Suite. Absolutely amazing! Sounds like it's a must-have with a V-Drum setup. If you have a spare moment, send me a link to a youtube video or a sound clip from one of your performances on the V-Drums. I'd love to hear them.

Thanks for taking the time to share your experiences, everyone. I'll be sure to update the thread in a few months once the basement is finished and I pull the trigger on getting a new kit. Really looking forward to it!

#18 3 years ago

Isn't Superior Drummer what used to be called "drum kit from hell"? That is absolutely amazing when you're ready to record. IMO the stock Roland td-30 sounds are good for practice and demoing but the available samples from DFH / superior drummer are phenomenal in terms of flexibilty

#19 3 years ago

How hard is it to hook a kit up to a computer and get things working properly between the software and the drums? Do you "download" the samples to the kit, or is everything processed through the software? Sorry for my ignorance, I've never dabbled in the software-side of drums before.

#20 3 years ago

i have a td10 running on a td9 standard kit. i run midi through an interface on my at home studio setup.i have a lot of fun running all my gear through propellerhead reason. lots of fun stuff to play with.

#21 3 years ago
Quoted from ghetoprobe:

How hard is it to hook a kit up to a computer and get things working properly between the software and the drums? Do you "download" the samples to the kit, or is everything processed through the software? Sorry for my ignorance, I've never dabbled in the software-side of drums before.

the software side can be really tricky or really easy... tons of different ways to set it up.

#22 3 years ago
Quoted from ghetoprobe:

How hard is it to hook a kit up to a computer and get things working properly between the software and the drums? Do you "download" the samples to the kit, or is everything processed through the software? Sorry for my ignorance, I've never dabbled in the software-side of drums before.

It's kind of a pain to set up initially if you've never done this type of thing before, but it's fairly simple once you get the hang of it.

Depending on the software you use (I use a product called "Reaper" which is phenomenally supported, is extremely full-featured as long as you're not a DJ, and it really cheap), you can download profiles for each product doing a lot of the mapping for you - most 3rd party software has a guide out there. DFH/EZDrummer, etc is one of the best supported as far as I can tell.

#23 3 years ago
Quoted from ghetoprobe:

How hard is it to hook a kit up to a computer and get things working properly between the software and the drums? Do you "download" the samples to the kit, or is everything processed through the software? Sorry for my ignorance, I've never dabbled in the software-side of drums before.

To answer your other question - the drum kit becomes just a way to trigger these samples. The TD-30 actually CAN download samples to its brain so you can carry them around with only the brain, no laptop required - but I don't know all the specifics on this. When you're in a studio and you're running the kit through your processing software, the kit triggers whatever samples you have it set to. IMO it's overkill for most situations, and I'm a little suspicious of it for playing/recording drums 'live' - but it does work pretty well. Superior Drummer/EZDrummer/DFH sounds A-MAZING on previously sequenced drums.

#24 3 years ago

I'm a long time drummer, I wouldn't say professional ,Hundreds of bar gigs so to say. I had a set of Roland I think they were called V-Customs? I believe it had a TD-8 brain but I'm going back over 10 years ago. My old bass player brought them from me and he was the one who did some recording with it which I thought at the time sounded pretty good. Wish I still had them but I will say they had a little more bounce than an acoustic kit which I feel kind of enhanced my drumming skills especially in the feet department where I had the stand up pad not the reverse beater on the floor foot pad.

#25 3 years ago

As said above, pre-sampled drum instruments run as a plugin on your computer. SuperiorDrummer goes on sale from time to time but I think its around $300 or so. Do you already have a recording computer setup?
Basically, the Vdrum module connects to the computer using a single MIDI cable. Most typical audio interfaces will have MIDI ins and outs,
so you load the plugin, set the input and then record MIDI data. After you record a track, you can still change the drums in the kit you're using, like if you want a deeper snare or lighter hi-hats. You can also adjust your actual notes and clean up any of your playing if you want.
Gearslutz.com is an awesome resource for recording and music software info.

Here's a couple of projects of mine. There's quite a bit of MIDI editing on the 2nd two tracks, which is another big plus of going electronic.

https://soundcloud.com/radiologicrecords/get-into-me-jordache
https://soundcloud.com/radiologicrecords/sunset-strip-hot-work
https://soundcloud.com/ultraturbo/em-for-empathy-fin
https://soundcloud.com/ultraturbo/no-one-told-you-fin

There are better demos lower on their actual page:
https://www.toontrack.com/product/superior-drummer-2/

Some prefer BFD or Slate to these as some have a more 'finished' sound, where other products let you do the mixing yourself. They are all professional products though.

When you get setup, if you need a hand or any info, let me know!

#26 3 years ago
Quoted from Rdoyle1978:

I use a product called "Reaper"

I tried Reaper many, many years ago and I didn't have much luck with it. I ended up going with ProTools. I don't believe it had the ability to share "profiles" for different products at the time. I'm sure it's come a long way since my first demo so I will definitely give it another try. Thanks!

Quoted from Carrman:

Do you already have a recording computer setup?

I already have quite a bit of studio equipment (mostly outboard gear), but the computer and ProTools are nearly a decade old at this point. I think it's running ProTools 7 so it may be time for an upgrade to both PC and software.

And it's embarrassing, but I have absolutely no experience with MIDI. We would always mic everything and record "live". Sounds straightforward enough, though. The thought of moving notes or changing out drums on the fly is a crazy thought! I'm certainly not a professional drummer, but I won't mind spending a few bucks for that much flexibility. Really looking forward to getting this setup!

I'm going to have your song "No One Told You" stuck in my head all day! Thanks for sharing!

#27 3 years ago

Found this on the internet......

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#28 3 years ago

I sold my v-drums last year to a neighbor kid going away to college. I bought them when I was married because the ex complained about the noise from my acoustic kit. They can make an average drummer sound great. The teenage kids who would come over and jam never touched my acoustics. They loved the v-drums.

Jam (resized).jpg

#29 3 years ago

If you're finishing your basement, build a small drum room and soundproof it. Use mics to record. For the cost of the Roland kit, you can afford a reasonably-priced acoustic, mics, cables, and the material to build and soundproof the room.

I've owned a Roland set in the past, and I sold it after a year or so. There's nothing like an acoustic kit for sound and feel. I have two. There's a reason that 99% of stage shows and studio recordings are acoustic kits. Church kits may be the exception. I'm not counting double-bass triggered metal.

I know that the convenience of being able to play along with a track, or easily record the output of the kit, or change kits seem like huge advantages. They aren't in the long run. Once you realize that you don't really need to change kits that often, and the novelty wears off, you'll be stuck with an electronic-sounding kit that is hard to get rid of. Play a drum roll on the snare without any backing noise. Try to ride one of the crash cymbals hard.

Go watch a Tony Royster youtube video of him on a Roland kit. He plays fast, and you can hear the "trigger-ish" sounds as he plays. You can't get rid of that.

tl;dr: Get an acoustic kit.

#30 3 years ago

If you are just looking to play drums, there is no replacement for a real set. If you are looking to play drums and experiment with sound, the roland set is a no brainer... Actually, if you want to experiment with sound and save some money, you can pretty much get any midi interface module (Yamaha, Alesis, Roland, etc.), and let your software be your sound bank. You also dont have to be brand loyal, and other people can chime in, but I havent found a much better dual trigger head than the Vmesh heads from Roland. I havent really deviated my set too much from factory other than getting rid of the single reverse kicker and going with a double pedal setup on a Pintech kick pad/drum (12").

#31 3 years ago
Quoted from jtaudio:

Found this on the internet......

Hilarious! That's what I'm worried about!

Quoted from pappyfromjersey:

There's nothing like an acoustic kit for sound and feel.

I would love to stick with an acoustic kit, but there are just too many negatives that keep me from playing them - mainly the noise level, but I also suffer from tinnitus so I'm stuck playing acoustics with earplugs or noise-cancelling headphones. I already have an acoustic set with mics, cables, stands, etc, but they're just collecting dust. I love the idea of heading down to the basement at 11pm with the kids sleeping and rocking out full tilt.

You're right though, I will definitely go put some time on the V-Drums before spending the money. If they sound too electronic or if they don't play right I may have to go down the soundproofing/isolated/acoustic route.

That Tony Royster performance at Sam Ash actually made me like the V-Drums even more! That guy is amazing!

#32 3 years ago
Quoted from ghetoprobe:

Hilarious! That's what I'm worried about!
You're right though, I will definitely go put some time on the V-Drums before spending the money. If they sound too electronic or if they don't play right I may have to go down the soundproofing/isolated/acoustic route.

I've always felt that V-Drums are more of a novelty, allowing quiet practice with the feel and semi-sound of an acoustic kit. If you already have the real kit, then the V-Drums aren't a terrible idea.

Anything that encourages practice is great in my book.

#33 3 years ago
Quoted from pappyfromjersey:

Anything that encourages practice is great in my book.

And that's exactly how I'm looking at this. I bought a new house (to me) back in '09 and my set has been stacked up in a corner since we moved in. Every time I thought about setting them up I'd think "eh, I don't want to piss the neighbors off", or "the kids are about to go to bed" and here we are 7 years later and they haven't been played a single time since moving in.

I'm hoping if I go top-of-the-line with the TD-30KV set then they'll be close enough in sound and feel to the real thing that it will fill the drumming void. Here's hoping!

#34 3 years ago
Quoted from ghetoprobe:

I'm hoping if I go top-of-the-line with the TD-30KV set then they'll be close enough in sound and feel to the real thing that it will fill the drumming void. Here's hoping!

If that's the case then you really don't need the 30's unless you have money of course then buy every thing you've ever wanted, the 11KV's or 25KS's are more than enough. JMO good luck

#35 3 years ago
Quoted from ghetoprobe:

And that's exactly how I'm looking at this. I bought a new house (to me) back in '09 and my set has been stacked up in a corner since we moved in. Every time I thought about setting them up I'd think "eh, I don't want to piss the neighbors off", or "the kids are about to go to bed" and here we are 7 years later and they haven't been played a single time since moving in.
I'm hoping if I go top-of-the-line with the TD-30KV set then they'll be close enough in sound and feel to the real thing that it will fill the drumming void. Here's hoping!

This breaks my heart.

The thought of stacking my drums for 7 years is impossible to imagine. Sorry, kids. Dad's playing.

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