So you’ve bought an electronic drumset, it might have cost $2000, or $500. You’re loving it, and you’ve bought a new cymbal here and there off ebay. But you’ve come to the realization that a major overhaul is needed to get the drumset to the level you want it at. At what point do you say, just forget about it I’ll buy a better drumset. VS just buying 15 parts and pieces from different websites and upgrading it that way.
You can go either way honestly. I’ve seen dudes with an alesis nitro that have like 3 modules and 15 drums and cymbals. I’ve also seen guys that sell the kit on Facebook and use that money towards a modestly better kit with the features they are really missing.
The REAL question is whats the magic number? What is that threshold that you hit and decide upgrades aren’t worth it anymore?
So in my head my number is something like 50%. Not a hard and fast number, but it’s something. Lets say you bought the TD17KL for $1000. You kinda want the mesh toms, and a 3 zone ride. And come to think of it and extra crash would be nice too. Lets add up the numbers:
If you want mesh toms, just going on ebay you can find two mesh toms from Alesis for $100. But I’m guessing most will want to make the drumset out of parts from the same brand. Roland is a tad more expensive and you have to REALLY look around. At first I saw a PDX6 for $60. Kinda small for me, so I checked reverb, and you can pick up a PD85 for $85. Get 3 of those and that’s $255. A Better ride like a CY13R is $130. And for the extra cymbal.. We’re already solid because we’ll take that ride cymbal we already had, and just use it as a crash. Sell the rubber tom pads we already had for For $25 each, and we get back $75. So all in all, that upgrade would cost about $310.
So I know what you’re thinking, Justin, what about the TD17KV. It comes with the 12” snare, and the mesh toms already. Also that version of the TD17 module has Bluetooth! It doesn’t have the extra crash and cy13R, but overall it’s less work to just buy that one for $1200.
That’s the kind of situation is where things get confusing. For me, the difference between the upgrade price and the new drumset price is so close, that buying the upgrades makes more sense. If you bought those used upgrades, you don’t have to sell your set for $800 and then pay the $400 difference to get the TD17KV. So you save a ton of time right there, and you’ll get the better ride, and solid toms.
So in a dilemma THAT close I would just do the upgrades. I want to buy a different set when my vision for my ideal kit is just drastically different from what I have RIGHT NOW. For example. If I have a Alesis Surge mesh because I wanted to test the waters of drumming and make sure it was for me. But after a year I decide that I Really want to have better cymbals, a better module. Upgrading that drumset just doesn’t make any sense. The module purchase would be at least $500 if I wanted something much nicer, better cymbals are going to cost at least $100 each, and before you know it, the cost of upgrades is over 100% the cost of the original drumset. Upgrades are a death by a thousand cuts type of a thing. One new cymbal becomes two. A bigger snare leads to a nicer module. Before you know it, you have a mid range drumset with $2000 trapped in it after a few years.
So again, I tend to say, I’ve I’m thinking about spending half the cost of my set in new upgrades, I would stop and really think about just dumping the kit and buying something else. Go on eBay and capitalize on a different drummer that mindlessly upgraded everything without thinking.
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