Without delving into the archives, I think I’ve now reviewed or played DW drums made from maple, cherry and oak, not to mention some hybrid wood-shelled drums too. And now there’s Purpleheart as well.
Purpleheart is so named because of the colour of wood – did you see that coming? The purple colour is the end result of a natural process where the wood changes to that colour upon reacting with ultraviolet light. It’s also a very hard wood.
The review kit consisted of 22×18 bass drum, 10×8 & 12×9 mounted toms and a 16×14 floor tom, with a 14×5.5 snare. Knowing DW, these sizes were probably scientifically found to be the best sizes for this kits properties, but I liked them all the same.
The kit had all of the [fairly] standard by now DW hardware, STM mounts, True Hoops, True Pitch tension rods and for the snare, Mag throw-off, 3P butt plate and 20 strand True Tone wires. The heads were DW’s own designed Remo heads. I’ve reviewed them previously and they sound and feel just fine. All high-end stuff then.
The 8 ply shells (toms & bass drum) are constructed using DW’s ‘HVLT’ grain orientation. This stands for Horizontal/Vertical Low Timbre. The same with the snare drum, although that’s 13-ply. As I mentioned, the colour of the drums is the natural finish of the wood, and this colour is also the same on the inside of the shells too.
As you’d expect, these are great drums but they do come at a price; and if you’re faint of heart, that price would probably make you cry. They’re not cheap, but then again, quality rarely does come cheaply.
Drum Workshop drums have a sound, and the kick and toms of this kit unsurprisingly sound like DWs, so nothing new as such there, but that’s not a bad thing. There’s not much more I can really say on that front. The snare drum is full sounding, relatively crispy and to my ear, potentially quite versatile too. I could happily use it for many applications.
The drums have a loud full sound, have a nice tuning range and sure do look pretty, and I think that’s possibly one of the main reasons you’d want one of these kits to begin with. I’ll go as far to say that the photos/video don’t really do the depth of the colour full justice.
Anyway, I liked these drums so much I bought a snare drum a few months after trying them. Is that a small endorsement? I don’t know. Whether it is or not, this kit stands as a testament to DW – precision, quality and excellence – and if you have the funds for one, this would probably be a kit that only gets better with time.
More over at http://www.dwdrums.com