Even the best of drummers will not be able to play the fattest of grooves, the best rhythms, or the craziest fills without skins on his or her magnificent drums. Cliché? Sure, but also an indisputable truth (as clichés always are), which does not require too much cerebration.
Choosing a brand and a specific model is a much bigger problem, though. Obviously, products made by the two biggest drumhead companies are widely available and known to everybody. However, last year’s price revolution has effectively dampened many drummers’ buying enthusiasm (at least in our region of the world). On top of that, more and more drum stores offer skins from the English company called Code, and the Chinese making a leap at western markets is bound to happen rather sooner than later. Plus, there’s Aquarian – the third drumhead manufacturer from the global Big Three (right next to Remo and Evans). Thus, it was only a matter of time before www.beatit.tv started testing the sonic qualities of drumheads from all manufacturers.
The first parcel of this kind has been sent to us by the Music Info company, which is the official Polish Aquarian distributor. This means we inaugurate our series of drumhead tests with that very brand. The first model to be presented is the Aquarian Texture Coated.
Aquarian Texture Coated Drumhead Test
Aquarian Texture Coated is a series of white, single ply heads. The distributor has sent us a set of skins in the following sizes: 10″, 12″, and two 14″ (one to be used on a tom, the other for the snare).
1. The test
The drum kit we put the heads on was a MES Midas Studio (birch/maple shells), a Natal Arcadia Steel 14″x8″ snare, as well as Aquarian Classic Clears as resonance skins. The toms and the snare drum were tuned with the help of the Tune Bot device, and in the following fashion:
- 10″ tom – high tuning, pitch D# (batter head – 292 Hz, resonant head – 245 Hz )
- 12″ tom – high tuning, pitch C (batter head – 245 Hz, resonant head – 206 Hz)
- 14″ tom – high tuning, pitch G# (batter head – 195 Hz, resonant head – 164 Hz)
- 14″ snare – high tuning, pitch A (batter head – 319 Hz, resonant head – 398 Hz)
- 10″ tom – medium tuning, pitch C (batter head – 245 Hz, resonant head – 206 Hz)
- 12″ tom – medium tuning, pitch A (batter head – 206 Hz, resonant head – 173 Hz)
- 14″ tom – medium tuning, pitch F (batter head – 164 Hz, resonant head – 138 Hz)
- 14″ snare – medium tuning, pitch G (batter head – 266 Hz, resonant head – 398 Hz)
- 10″ tom – low tuning, pitch A (batter head – 206 Hz, resonant head – 173 Hz)
- 12″ tom – low tuning, pitch F# (batter head – 173 Hz, resonant head – 146 Hz)
- 14″ tom – low tuning, pitch D (batter head – 138 Hz, resonant head – 116 Hz)
- 14″ snare – low tuning, pitch E (batter head – 229 Hz, resonant head – 343 Hz).
The microphones used to perform the test:
- Overheads: Proel DMH3 (2 pcs)
- ROLAND R-26 recording device mics (4 pcs)
2. Basic specification of the Aquarian drumheads tested by us:
- Series: Texture Coated
- Plies: 1
- Thickness: 10 mil
- Colour: White
- Finish: Satin
- Character: Traditional
- Application: Toms, Snare Drum
- Size: 6″ through 28″.
3. The sound
Aquarian Texture Coated drum heads are the most classic-looking and classic-sounding product there is. White, rough, and (according to the manufacturer) durable texture coating is perfect for some brush work. The skins respond well in every tuning range we applied, i. e. the highest pitch produces a beautiful, classic jazz sound with high overtones which are just music to our ears. As the tuning goes down, the sonic characteristics become those ideal for classic rock. The overall sound can be described as open, rather dry, but warm at the same time. Apart from the music genres already mentioned, these heads are a perfect fit for pop, latino, fusion, or funk.
Our impressions, both from playing and listening to the recording, are very good. We cannot say anything about the durability of Aquarian Texture Coated heads, as it would require making a test which would have to last for at least a few days. We encourage everyone to form their own opinion about this drum head model, be it through our video, or during a visit at the nearest drum store. They are also worthy of all drummers’ attention for financial reasons – a factor which shouldn’t be neglected. Just take a look at the price lists of Aquarian’s two biggest competitors…
Distributor in Poland: http://www.musicinfo.pl/
Drummers and Drummerettes! It’s time to put Aquarian Texture Coated heads to the most important test of all, i. e. the www.beatit.tv viewers’ ear test!Share