Do I need to change bottom tom heads when I change the tops?

by grant a.

Do I need to change bottom tom heads when I change the tops?


Hi, Grant--

It depends on whether your kit is new and you are replacing the factory heads or you have had your kit for some time and know what heads you want to use.

If your kit is new, you will want to choose resonant (bottom) heads that are compatible with the batter (top) heads, depending on what kind of sound you wish to achieve.

For example, Clear Pinstripes on the bottom and Coated Ambassadors on the top work well together for toms if you want a deep sound with sharp attack and not to much ringing. You have to experiment, which can be expensive, I know.

On the other hand, if you already know what kind of sound you want to use and have determined the
proper combination of batter and resonant heads to achieve that sound, then the basic rule of thumb is to change the resonant heads every three to four times that you change batter heads.

You can find a detailed description of different kinds of heads at Tuning Drums.

Hey--when you get those heads the way you want them and you have a song that you would like to learn, be sure to check out our Almost Free Drum Tabs. These are guaranteed accurate drum transcriptions in sheet music format. You can also order custom tabs for any song that you choose.

If you would like to help other drummers with your knowledge of drum heads or any other drumming subject, just use the comments section of this page and start your own mini-forum. Other drummers will appreciate your knowledge!


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