1/11/2008 [Drums]New Ultra High-End Drum Set Pushes Musical Boundaries
In Yamaha's quest to continually expand the boundaries of musicality for drummers, the company used newfound Asian woods to create the PHX kit.
"These particular woods, jatoba and kapur, have never before been used to make drums, and when you put them together in a specific combination, they produce an amazing musical tone," says Dave Jewell, marketing manager, Yamaha Drums, Pro Audio & Combo Division. "We've discovered one of nature's secrets."
In addition to sounding great, the 11-ply shells are a sight to behold. The center ply, jatoba, is an extremely hard wood that provides the drum's core note. On either side are four plies of kapur, which is a softer wood than jatoba. The inner and outer plies of the shell are customized, using maple or a combination of a burled ash outer ply and a maple inner ply.
The concept behind the PHX shell construction is to use the hardest wood in the middle surrounded by softer plies of wood; this produces a sonic "ripple effect" similar to the sound a pebble creates with waves when dropped in water.
"The trend today is thin shells, but frankly, these drumsmade with this specific wood combination do not sound 'thick,'" said Jim Haler, product manager, Yamaha Drums. "They go against every sonic standard of a thick shell."
Joe Testa, Yamaha Drums international artist relations manager, added that "We brought these drums into the studio with some of our top artists, and the difference is astounding. I describe it this way: when most drums are struck, the sound comes from them and hits you. With this kit's sound, it hugs you. Imagine your current Yamaha sound with a natural preamp on it. Generally, a kit's sound improves with age. On the PHX, the aging process seems to be accelerated. Within just a week of playing it, the sound matured immensely. It really is beautiful."
Not only is the shell construction a new venture for Yamaha, the kit's new and improved mounting system is, too. Developed to make the fundamental tone of each drum clearer and better defined, the wooden tom mount, combined with shock-mountable rubber contact points, provides ultimate resonance. As with all Yamaha drums, the mounting points are positioned at the nodal points of the shell.
The newly designed detachable lugs are mounted where the overtones are the highest. The balance of the nodal point mount and the overtone point of the lugs help mute unwanted overtones, making the fundamental tone come alive with much more clarity.
"The PHX was not made to replace our current high end drums, but rather to supply drummers with another musical voice in their arsenal," said Jewell. "Yamaha Drums will continue to create instruments that further a musician's capability to create better music. We pride ourselves in being the choice for those serious about their music."
Available with chrome or gold hardware and in nine impressive finishes (four maple, five in burled ash), the PHX drumset is expected to ship in March 2008.
For more information, visit Yamaha at Winter NAMM 2008 in Booth 4578, Hall C in the Anaheim Convention Center; write Yamaha Corporation of America, Pro Audio & Combo Division, Drum Products, P.O. Box 6600, Buena Park, CA 90622; telephone (714) 522-9011; e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org; visit www.yamahadrums.com.