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MGR/sabianrules07 09/02/2005

Mapex M Series : MGR/sabianrules07's user review

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I recieved this set secondhand and only slightly used from my father (most likely from eBay. My set came in a rare, "special order" Transparent Purple Laquer with a 22" x 16" bass, one 13" x 11" rack tom and a 16" x 16" floor tom. A 5 1/2" x 14" snare was also included. My kit came with all of the 500 series hardware (boom stand, straight stand, snare stand, hi-hat stand), a 300 series throne, a Mapex P-380 double bass pedal (bought separately, said the owner) and a custom cut Mapex boom stand and a off-brand boom stand (both of those I don't use).

Okay, first I'd like to clarify that this set, for its wood construction, looks and sounds fantastic. I tune down with my drums (considering mine only came with a 13" rack tom and a 16" floor tom...deep sizes), so the bass drum gives off a bantastic boom and the toms emit rounded but deep overtones that are powerful yet versitile enough for any style of music. I heard complaints about the snare giving off too many overtones, but considering the construction (which I will get to in a little bit), all I had to do was tune the snare head high up to get a fantastic pop. The hardware is great. The P-380 Pedal is also fantastic, as it is my first double pedal.

Honestly, I got more than what I bargained for. If any complaints, mine is mainly a hardware complaint. The doublew pedal just needs better beaters. I plan on saving up to some Tama Iron Cobra beaters for some extra bounce.

Now, this is the part that gets a lot of people confused. My version comes with non-matching bass drum hoops and gold badges. What does that signify?...that this model is constucted of a 8 ply Maple and Basswood combo. The inner 7 plies are of basswood, while the guite large outer stave ply is of maple. The maple adds warmth, sustain, and attack (also helps to the tranparent lacquer finish); while the basswood adds the tone, clarity, and projection (gives off a sound similar to a stronger form of birch, in my opinion). Many have said that this model is either the new M Maple (made of 9 ply 100% Maple) or the new M Birch (made of an 8 ply Maple/Birch combo), but this is an opled model made from around 1999 to about 2003 or so, so don't be confused. Everything is well built and sturdy. I have yet to break a part or ruin the finish on these babies.

Honestly, I love my Mapexes. They may be old, but they sound fantastic for their construction and layout...and plus, considering the finish, only a select few were made, so I got a rare set
(~GO ME!!~). Don't be confused with this model and the new Mapex M's. These are entirely different and discontinued. Nevertheles, I love mine, as I use them for live and studio work.

This review was originally published on http://www.musicgearreview.com