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Gretsch's Catalina Club is THE best drum set I own.
Old 24th July 2012
  #1
Gear Addict
 

Gretsch's Catalina Club is THE best drum set I own.

I have a set from DW, Ludwig, Slingerland, and Premier, but none of them can shake a stick at the value of this $600.00 drum set with a little 18" kick drum.

The snare cracks. the toms sing, and the kick makes an 808 on a hip hop track cry in shame. It's easily transportable to gigs, where on numerous occasions I've received praises for my tone. On top of it all, it records really well.

Check out the sound file I've posted!

Any other happy Gretsch owners or Engineers with great recording experiences with a Gretsch kit?

EDIT: Uploaded another sample!
Attached Files

Gretsch Catalina Club.mp3 (941.9 KB, 11673 views)

Gretsch Groove 2.mp3 (981.7 KB, 10401 views)

Old 24th July 2012
  #2
Here for the gear
 

sexy
Old 24th July 2012
  #3
Gear Addict
 

Sounds great man!
Old 24th July 2012
  #4
Gear Addict
 

I love Gretch in general, the last place I worked had a Catalina Stage kit that sounded better then half the DW, Tama, and Pearl kits that came in.
Old 24th July 2012
  #5
Gear Head
 

Nice! :D
Old 24th July 2012
  #6
Gear Addict
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by BHickey View Post
I love Gretch in general, the last place I worked had a Catalina Stage kit that sounded better then half the DW, Tama, and Pearl kits that came in.
I see it your pics from the link. I'm sold on the sustain generated by smaller sized kick drums, and fewer plys.
Old 24th July 2012
  #7
Lives for gear
 
lectric's Avatar
The mahogani model???
Old 24th July 2012
  #8
Lives for gear
 
ionian's Avatar
I do session work for a studio owner / producer who's been around the block and making hits for over 30 years, so this is a guy who's judgement I always trust when it comes to equipment and recording. All his drums are a tracked with Catalina club kit. His drum tracks are always bangin' and that little kit kicks major ass and always sounds great. I agree with your assessment on all accounts!

Regards,
Frank
Old 24th July 2012
  #9
Gear Addict
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by lectric View Post
The mahogani model???
Birch
Old 24th July 2012
  #10
Lives for gear
I have to agree that these are amazing little kits. I have a Premier Artist series birch kit that I love, but I’ve always been impressed with the sound and playability of the Gretsch Catalina kits. Then again, I’m a huge fan of Gretsch in general. They make some of the finest instruments in the world, and they do everything right IMO……good stuff all the way around.

Chris
Old 24th July 2012
  #11
Lives for gear
 
Dr. Mordo's Avatar
 

I have an early catalina rock kit (14/16/18/26). I think I paid $1000 and it came with a full set of gibraltar hardware.

It's been a great kit. It sounds amazingly 'gretsch' for the money. The snare sounds almost exactly like a 60s Grestch snare I had. I will add, however, that these catalina kits are somewhat inconsistent in terms of quality. The snare that came with my kit has a slightly warped shell, and a friend who works at a huge drum store told me that's pretty common with the catalinas. He told me this 5 years ago, so hopefully things have gotten better.
Old 25th July 2012
  #12
Gear Nut
Catalina birch fusion size here -

Constantly amazed at the sound from the kick. So deep & full but "tight" sounding.

Every drummer that's played it has loved the kit's sound & I'm constantly getting compliments from other musos too.

Snare's my least favourite part - bit boring (doesn't sound bad though).
Toms sing, kick thumps (in a good way), bang for buck is ridiculous.

Btw - no quality control issues here.
Old 25th July 2012
  #13
Lives for gear
I have a little Catalina Club kit.


I ****ing love it.
Old 25th July 2012
  #14
Gear Addict
 

I just posted a second clip! I tried figure 8 on the kick mic and it removed some cymbal bleed/pumping.
Old 25th July 2012
  #15
Gear Guru
 

our school got a Catalina Club for the school's studio.

sounds great, looks great. It has even been borrowed for some video shoots in the TV studio where the drummer preferred it to his own kit.
Old 26th July 2012
  #16
Lives for gear
Drummer in my band has this kit. He is a great player, but apparently a terrible drum tech. You guys have some advice on tuning these 18" kicks? I got him a drum dial for christmas. How do i get him to use it on the damn thing?!
Old 26th July 2012
  #17
Here for the gear
 
northamrec's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by nimblemongoose View Post
I have a set from DW, Ludwig, Slingerland, and Premier, but none of them can shake a stick at the value of this $600.00 drum set with a little 18" kick drum.

The snare cracks. the toms sing, and the kick makes an 808 on a hip hop track cry in shame. It's easily transportable to gigs, where on numerous occasions I've received praises for my tone. On top of it all, it records really well.

Check out the sound file I've posted!

Any other happy Gretsch owners or Engineers with great recording experiences with a Gretsch kit?

EDIT: Uploaded another sample!
I was just thinking about this kit today! One of my best friends owns this kit and I've always loved it. Despite the kick being 18" it is still one of the biggest sounding kicks I've ever recorded.
Old 29th July 2012
  #18
Gear Addict
 

I love hearing this from you guys. I've been playing congas and other hand drums the last 14 years. Just bought a club jazz kit 3 weeks ago to expand my percussive horizons and I'm having the time of my life. Wished I had done this 40 years ago.

The kit sounds great. All drums tune up nicely. No issues with out-of-round shells (yet). Kit was advertised as mahogany, but looks more like birch with maybe a single mahogany ply in the center (I do know my woods, if nothing else).
Old 29th July 2012
  #19
Lives for gear
I'm looking at a set of Catalina shells for $300 v. $500 for the shells and hardware for a Pearl Session Studio set. General thoughts?

Years ago, our school had a late 60's or so set of Ludwigs, and I have yet to find a set with that sound. I probably will never be lucky enough to find a set quite like them. The toms had a very satisfying thump with little ring.

I bought a set of Tama Rockstars, and just am not liking the ring or the loudness.

Should I be looking at the Catalinas? Something else? Any suggestions would be appreciated.
Old 29th July 2012
  #20
Gear Addict
 
RFZ DUDE's Avatar
i have been recording a catalina set recently, dont know wich size or such but really i got to say it didnt sound that good - even after having it properly tuned.
especially the kick was just not exciting.
that drummer used a mix of vintage ludwig and sonor drums before and that sounded really massive.
Old 29th July 2012
  #21
Gear Nut
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by 2manyrocks View Post
I'm looking at a set of Catalina shells for $300 v. $500 for the shells and hardware for a Pearl Session Studio set. General thoughts?

Years ago, our school had a late 60's or so set of Ludwigs, and I have yet to find a set with that sound. I probably will never be lucky enough to find a set quite like them. The toms had a very satisfying thump with little ring.

I bought a set of Tama Rockstars, and just am not liking the ring or the loudness.

Should I be looking at the Catalinas? Something else? Any suggestions would be appreciated.
They aren't very loud, but they do ring a lot because they have thin shells and no reinforcement rings.
Old 29th July 2012
  #22
Lives for gear
Is the sound in this video about representative of how the Catalina's typically sound? Gretsch Catalina Club Black Galaxy 3pc Bop Kit Demo with Stephen Whitesides - YouTube


Found this Pearl Session demo and like what I heard. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eRLZN...3EE160C0E16F7C

I am a bit wary that tuning, the room, EQ, can change what I'm hearing.
Old 30th July 2012
  #23
Lives for snowflakes
 
12ax7's Avatar
 

.
I always thought the Catalinas sounded pretty good, but I had only heard them in live situations.

...Then I had a blues band come in to record, and the drummer had a set of 'em:

He had just put a new set of Remo Emperors/Ambassadors on 'em, and the kit tuned up quick and easy, and sounded great in the room. (Fat & punchy!)

Plus, I don't think I've ever had an easier time getting a drum sound in the CR. Just mic'd the kit up, pulled up the faders, and there it was!

After VERY little tweakage, I was a very happy camper, and on to getting the rest of the instruments ready to go.

I was VERY impressed, to say the least. ...And as others have pointed out here, that little kick drum sounded HUGE (without having to wrestle with tuning, EQ. etc.).

The Catalinas really ARE indeed a great no-bull**** drum kit.
.
Old 30th July 2012
  #24
Nice sounds! I've been a fan of the USA Gretsch kits of all ages, but I'm no vintage or boutique snob, if it sounds good it is good, and your Catalina there sounds damn good. What heads and what was the mic-up/chain out of interest? This is GS after all. And the front head doesn't sound ported?

18" kicks are a bit of a secret weapon. Well not really all that secret, but there still seem to be a heap of people that still think a bigger kick always = bigger sound. I find the 18s tend to have a narrow tuning range compared with larger kicks, but in a way that makes them easier to deal with, just find the sweet spot and bang you're done. You've done a great job with yours.
Old 30th July 2012
  #25
Gear Addict
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by dylanr View Post
Nice sounds! I've been a fan of the USA Gretsch kits of all ages, but I'm no vintage or boutique snob, if it sounds good it is good, and your Catalina there sounds damn good. What heads and what was the mic-up/chain out of interest?
Heads are all coated ambassadors. The reso head of the kick is still what came with it and not ported.

The overheads were a pair of Earthworks sr30s placed over the rack and floor tom at drummer's head height pointed at the snare. They went straight into 2 ssl channel strips with a Pendulum ES-8 on the insert.

The kick was a c12 in fig 8 about 3 feet from the reso head pointed slightly at an angle to keep the rest of the kit in the null. (There's still bleed of course, but it's the only way to capture the low end IMO) This was gained by a Chandler Germanium and slammed hard into a Distressor in Opto for the sustain.
Old 1st August 2012
  #26
Gear Addict
 
mrmike186's Avatar
 

Here's a pic of the great jazz drummer Matt Wilson making beautiful sounds on a Catalina kit at the Port Townsend Jazz Festival this last weekend. Legendary George Cables on piano and Chuck Deardorf on bass. The also great Jeff Hamilton is diggin' it from his table with pizza and wine in the lower right.
Attached Thumbnails
Gretsch's Catalina Club is THE best drum set I own.-082.jpg  
Old 1st August 2012
  #27
Gear Guru
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by mrmike186 View Post
Here's a pic of the great jazz drummer Matt Wilson making beautiful sounds on a Catalina kit at the Port Townsend Jazz Festival this last weekend. Legendary George Cables on piano and Chuck Deardorf on bass. The also great Jeff Hamilton is diggin' it from his table with pizza and wine in the lower right.
it looks like it sounds great

and suddenly I have a hankering for pizza
Old 1st August 2012
  #28
Lives for gear
 

Had one. Loved it! Had to get rid of it, but I'm getting ready to buy one again.
Old 15th August 2012
  #29
Lives for gear
 
drmmrboy's Avatar
 

Just got one of these. Not Club but Cat Birch. Larger sizes. 12, 13, 16, 22. Set up the toms with coated G2's. Sounded good, but the clincher was putting the coated heads that came stock, from the top, down to the reso side. Niiiice.
Old 15th August 2012
  #30
Lives for gear
Anybody compared the Gretsch maple shells to the Mapex meridian maple shells?
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