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Ludwig Breakbeats by Questlove 4-Piece Shell Pack  Azure Sparkle

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Breakbeats by Ludwig marks the return of Ahmir "Questlove" Thompson to the drums of his youth. With a setup compact enough for an apartment, cab and ...Click To Read More About This Product

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OVERVIEW

"Break-able" for the gritty, raw backbeats you love.

Breakbeats by Ludwig marks the return of Ahmir "Questlove" Thompson to the drums of his youth. With a setup compact enough for an apartment, cab and a coffeehouse, Breakbeats by Ludwig are an ideal companion for the gigging, urban percussionist.

The driving force behind these drums are the 7-ply poplar shells that produce punchy, focused attack with dry, clipped resonance. A 45-degree bearing edge ensures quick, classic shell response, while triple-flanged hoops will endure the best rimshots you can produce. Positioned on an included lift for optimum reach, Breakbeat's 16" x 14" bass drum, 13" x 13" floor tom, 10" x 7" tom and 14" x 5" matching wood snare not only fit into tight places, but also break down quickly.

This shell pack also includes velvet storage bags for a convenient transport option. Additionally, you can use the bags to reduce volume by draping each bag over each drum. Available in three durable wrap finishes, Breakbeats by Questlove has a footprint as "tight" as their namesake.

Cymbals and hardware sold separately.

FEATURES
Configuration
  • Bass drum(s): 16" x 14"
  • Tom(s): 10" x 7"
  • Floor tom(s): 13" x 13"
  • Snare: 14" x 5"
  • Total pieces: 4
  • Hardware: Not applicable
  • Cymbals: Not applicable
  • Shells
  • Shell material: Poplar
  • Construction: 7-Ply
  • Thickness (mm): Info Not Available
  • Bearing edge: 45
  • Reinforcement ring: Not applicable
  • Drum Hardware
  • Material: Steel
  • Mounts: Traditional
  • Hoops: Triple-flange
  • Lugs: Standard
  • Other
  • Heads: Branded
  • Finish type: Wrap
  • Country of origin: China

A pocket kit made to fit the seam of tight grooves. Order today!

Reviews
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Review Snapshot

by PowerReviews
LudwigBreakbeats by Questlove 4-Piece Shell Pack
 
4.6

(based on 49 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (36)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (10)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (1)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (1)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (1)

93%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Great sound (35)
  • Versatile (29)
  • Responsive (28)
  • Huge tone (16)
  • Sensitive (16)

Cons

No Cons

Best Uses

  • Small venues (35)
  • Jazz clubs (26)
  • Accompaniment (20)
  • School bands (7)
  • Soundtracks (7)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Experienced (29), Professional musician (16)

Most Liked Positive Review

 

Detailed Review

I received a white sparkle Breakbeats as an unexpected gift from my wife. With some vacation time on my hands and nowhere to go, I ran this kit through the ritual of...Read complete review

I received a white sparkle Breakbeats as an unexpected gift from my wife. With some vacation time on my hands and nowhere to go, I ran this kit through the ritual of evaluation.

BUILD QUALITY

The kit comes in a state of partial assembly. I completely disassembled the kit to inspect all hardware and interiors. Shells (excluding wrap) measured .255" with calipers. The interiors are of a white wood rumored to be poplar, and it appears to be just that. Small knots (not holes) indicate that the wood is not deep heartwood, but it is too white in color to have been taken from the sapwood. In Ludwig tradition, date of manufacture is stamped inside each shell. The exterior sparkle wrap is nicely done, and completely glued to the shell. With the hardware removed I took the opportunity to wax the laminate with NuFinish car wax which really made the sparkle "pop" and provides UV protection (keeps the white from yellowing).

The drums were in-round but it was evident that they were not handled with great care in manufacture. There was indication of a "get 'em done, get 'em out" mentality in production. An example is the holes. Though drilled in the correct places, the drill was "punched through" leaving break-out and rough edges on interior wood and spiral shavings of laminate on the exterior. This is all covered by hardware, but on more expensive drums, more care is taken. Drum "badges" are carefully placed stickers. The edge of the bass drum badge was peeling due to lack of adhesive, and with no way to fix it, I removed it. The stickers look really cheezy. Really, how much can proper drum badges cost?

The chroming on the hardware is very thin, and showed what looks like mild chrome "acne." This appears to be due to imperfections in the substrate surface (which thicker chroming would hide) rather than pitting or corrosion. Bass drum legs and tom mount seem very sturdy, if roughly cast and thinly chromed. The hoops are of very thin gauge steel, thinner than 1.6 mm., and feel as though they would deform under tight tension or rim shots. They are polished bright but I'm not sure that they are chromed. Bass drum hoops are metal, tension claws are stamped steel.

Tuning lug screws all have thick nylon washers. All threads on screws and bolts throughout felt as though they were binding until light grease was applied. I think the un-lubed threads were actually galling (catching and tearing metal). It would be best to lube all threads on all parts before doing anything with this kit.

HEADS

Heads are Remo UT/UC made in China, and are poor. They are impossible to tune evenly and wrinkled no matter what I did. The Bass drum heads were passable. Both bass drum heads are thick and both have an interior dampening Mylar ring.

BASS DRUM

With the supplied heads the kick sounds surprisingly deep for a 16" but is quite quiet. The riser is a knock-off of the Gibraltar SC-BDPM, and is of simple design but works well for getting the beater to strike nearer the center of the head. Some people have complained about the pedal linkage hitting the rim. If you put the riser in the lowest position, most modern pedals will clear the rim. If you extend the riser fully, you will likely need to set the pedal back a little. Set low, the beater hits a little off-center (pedal set for center of 22" kick). I detected no difference in sound from behind or in front of the kit regardless of how the riser was set. However, the drum is beater sensitive. With a felt beater, there is an "ooom." A plastic beater drastically increases attack. If you want to change out the batter, the only company I know of making 16" kicks is Aquarian , which is fortunate because their heads are excellent.

TOM TOM

The tiny tom has memory locks for both the down-tube and the L-arm, but the receiving notch in the hardware is quite shallow. This is not Ludwig's regular stuff. I replaced both heads with Evans coated (G2 on top, G12 on bottom sounded best to my ears). The sound is "woody" and very pleasing. Owing to the low-density wood, the drum can be deeper than you would expect, but can be tuned up higher for jazz. Volume is attenuated, which is a good thing if playing in intimate venues. Being accustomed to suspension mounts, this drum lacked sustain with the supplied mount. Unmounted and held with two fingers sustain is very nice. If one were to obtain a suspension mount, one would also need to obtain a mounting bracket, as the hole-spacing of the brackets (same for tom mount and floor tom legs) is less than 2".

FLOOR TOM

The 13"x13" floor tom was outfitted with G12s top and bottom. The drum surprised me for how low it sounds. The rough legs terminate in cheezy hard and thin rubber feet, which diminish sustain but on my sample didn't choke the tone. Gibralter floating feet may wring the potential out of this drum.

SNARE DRUM

The snare drum is made of the same wood in the same thickness as the rest of the kit and is very light for a snare drum. To my amazement, snare beds are present. The strainer and butt are cheaply stamped and chromed, but are rather heavy-duty, and worked very smoothly after they were disassembled, cleaned, and properly lubed. Engagement is not positive, kind of sliding into place, but it stays put.

I pride myself on being able to get any snare drum to sound good with proper tuning. This one frustrated me. The drum sounded completely unfocused and "boingy." To try to fix it without putting money into it, I sanded the interior using 220, 400, and 1,000 grit paper. I applied a coat of clear satin wood wax to the wood, let it dry for a day, and buffed it out for an hour while watching a movie, to produce a glass-like sonically-reflective satin surface. The supplied reso head seemed too thick. I found a reso head from an Acrolite and the Acro's original wires, which were better than the ones that came with the Breakbeats. After installing the head, I affixed the wires with grosgrain ribbon, ditching the thick plastic straps that came with it. I found a G1 in my old stock, and came across a 2.3 mm 14" top S-hoop of 8-lug configuration I had forgotten about. The effect of these was cumulative but of all the things I did, I think the heavier hoop was the source of the single greatest improvement in sound.

The results were not amazing, but the improvements did make for a drum that is at least usable. Due to the soft, low-density wood it is quiet and dry, lacking "crack," but it is surprisingly sensitive and articulate with the improvements, and has a low, "EQ'd sound" that works well in small venues where a better snare might be overwhelming. After the enhancements it sounds like a real snare drum, but not one you'd buy if it didn't come with the kit.

OVERALL

As this is a shell pack, I added some hardware I had on hand: a lightweight snare basket, a lightweight hi had stand, and a lightweight cymbal stand to mount a single crash-ride. Much more hardware than that would defeat the purpose of this light little portable kit.

The whole shell pack easily fits in the back seat of my '02 Mazda sedan. When I took it to its first Jazz Jam, the other musicians poked fun at its diminutive size, until I started playing it. They all commented that they could not believe that such a tiny kit sounded so good. The best part, though, was carrying it in and out of the venue. The drums fit in a set of SKB soft cases (the bass drum, even with all the extra hardware on it, fits in a 16x16 SBK floor tom case; btw, the supplied bags are useless). The snare drum went in an Acrolite backpack case. With snare on my back, I was able to transport the two lightweight toms in my left hand, and the bass drum slung over my right shoulder up the rickety and unrailed switch-back stairs to the Jazz Coop. One more trip with a backpack cymbal bag and carrying a hardware bag is all the gear-schlepping I had to do. Never before have I been able to get all my gear in by myself in two trips.

BOTTOM LINE

The kit looks great, is lightweight and sounds surprisingly good. Necessary upgrades include better batter and reso heads on snare and toms, and a heavier top hoop for the snare drum. Floating floor tom feet, better snare wires and 1.6 mm hoops all around, and perhaps an isolation mount for the tom would be an improvement, but I'm not sure it's worth putting that much money into this kit.

At less cost than a quality snare drum, the Breakbeats are what they are. Not high-end drums, they nevertheless look and sound better than I expected. They play well, amaze the audience and other musicians, and are quick to sto-and-go. They're cool in a kind of a riding-a-tiny-bicycle sort of way.

VS

Most Liked Negative Review

 

Not bad for the price

This kit is cool, but the quality is sketchy everywhere you look. But for the price, it's expected. Replace the heads. It will tune up surprisingly well. The 16" bass...Read complete review

This kit is cool, but the quality is sketchy everywhere you look. But for the price, it's expected. Replace the heads. It will tune up surprisingly well. The 16" bass drum is fun. The riser (as with all bass drum risers I have ever tried) forces you to put the pedal a bit too far away from the drum so the chain doesn't hit the rim of the drum as you play- the feel is a little weird. The included bags are worthless. All in all, I wonder if the Sonor Safari has better quality for about the same money. Oh well.... would I buy this again- no. But it does what I wanted - small footprint- finish has a cool 70's look- can carry around easy.

Reviewed by 49 customers

Displaying reviews 1-10

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(32 of 32 customers found this review helpful)

 
4.0

Detailed Review

By GCH

from Washington, DC

About Me Experienced

See all my reviews

Ask me a question

Pros

  • Easy To Transport
  • Great Sound
  • Huge Tone
  • Responsive
  • Sensitive
  • Snare Beds Present
  • Versatile

Cons

  • Cheezy Badges
  • Flimsy Counterhoops
  • Terrible Heads
  • Thin Chrome

Best Uses

  • Busking
  • Jazz Clubs
  • Small Venues

Comments about Ludwig Breakbeats by Questlove 4-Piece Shell Pack:

I received a white sparkle Breakbeats as an unexpected gift from my wife. With some vacation time on my hands and nowhere to go, I ran this kit through the ritual of evaluation.

BUILD QUALITY

The kit comes in a state of partial assembly. I completely disassembled the kit to inspect all hardware and interiors. Shells (excluding wrap) measured .255" with calipers. The interiors are of a white wood rumored to be poplar, and it appears to be just that. Small knots (not holes) indicate that the wood is not deep heartwood, but it is too white in color to have been taken from the sapwood. In Ludwig tradition, date of manufacture is stamped inside each shell. The exterior sparkle wrap is nicely done, and completely glued to the shell. With the hardware removed I took the opportunity to wax the laminate with NuFinish car wax which really made the sparkle "pop" and provides UV protection (keeps the white from yellowing).

The drums were in-round but it was evident that they were not handled with great care in manufacture. There was indication of a "get 'em done, get 'em out" mentality in production. An example is the holes. Though drilled in the correct places, the drill was "punched through" leaving break-out and rough edges on interior wood and spiral shavings of laminate on the exterior. This is all covered by hardware, but on more expensive drums, more care is taken. Drum "badges" are carefully placed stickers. The edge of the bass drum badge was peeling due to lack of adhesive, and with no way to fix it, I removed it. The stickers look really cheezy. Really, how much can proper drum badges cost?

The chroming on the hardware is very thin, and showed what looks like mild chrome "acne." This appears to be due to imperfections in the substrate surface (which thicker chroming would hide) rather than pitting or corrosion. Bass drum legs and tom mount seem very sturdy, if roughly cast and thinly chromed. The hoops are of very thin gauge steel, thinner than 1.6 mm., and feel as though they would deform under tight tension or rim shots. They are polished bright but I'm not sure that they are chromed. Bass drum hoops are metal, tension claws are stamped steel.

Tuning lug screws all have thick nylon washers. All threads on screws and bolts throughout felt as though they were binding until light grease was applied. I think the un-lubed threads were actually galling (catching and tearing metal). It would be best to lube all threads on all parts before doing anything with this kit.

HEADS

Heads are Remo UT/UC made in China, and are poor. They are impossible to tune evenly and wrinkled no matter what I did. The Bass drum heads were passable. Both bass drum heads are thick and both have an interior dampening Mylar ring.

BASS DRUM

With the supplied heads the kick sounds surprisingly deep for a 16" but is quite quiet. The riser is a knock-off of the Gibraltar SC-BDPM, and is of simple design but works well for getting the beater to strike nearer the center of the head. Some people have complained about the pedal linkage hitting the rim. If you put the riser in the lowest position, most modern pedals will clear the rim. If you extend the riser fully, you will likely need to set the pedal back a little. Set low, the beater hits a little off-center (pedal set for center of 22" kick). I detected no difference in sound from behind or in front of the kit regardless of how the riser was set. However, the drum is beater sensitive. With a felt beater, there is an "ooom." A plastic beater drastically increases attack. If you want to change out the batter, the only company I know of making 16" kicks is Aquarian , which is fortunate because their heads are excellent.

TOM TOM

The tiny tom has memory locks for both the down-tube and the L-arm, but the receiving notch in the hardware is quite shallow. This is not Ludwig's regular stuff. I replaced both heads with Evans coated (G2 on top, G12 on bottom sounded best to my ears). The sound is "woody" and very pleasing. Owing to the low-density wood, the drum can be deeper than you would expect, but can be tuned up higher for jazz. Volume is attenuated, which is a good thing if playing in intimate venues. Being accustomed to suspension mounts, this drum lacked sustain with the supplied mount. Unmounted and held with two fingers sustain is very nice. If one were to obtain a suspension mount, one would also need to obtain a mounting bracket, as the hole-spacing of the brackets (same for tom mount and floor tom legs) is less than 2".

FLOOR TOM

The 13"x13" floor tom was outfitted with G12s top and bottom. The drum surprised me for how low it sounds. The rough legs terminate in cheezy hard and thin rubber feet, which diminish sustain but on my sample didn't choke the tone. Gibralter floating feet may wring the potential out of this drum.

SNARE DRUM

The snare drum is made of the same wood in the same thickness as the rest of the kit and is very light for a snare drum. To my amazement, snare beds are present. The strainer and butt are cheaply stamped and chromed, but are rather heavy-duty, and worked very smoothly after they were disassembled, cleaned, and properly lubed. Engagement is not positive, kind of sliding into place, but it stays put.

I pride myself on being able to get any snare drum to sound good with proper tuning. This one frustrated me. The drum sounded completely unfocused and "boingy." To try to fix it without putting money into it, I sanded the interior using 220, 400, and 1,000 grit paper. I applied a coat of clear satin wood wax to the wood, let it dry for a day, and buffed it out for an hour while watching a movie, to produce a glass-like sonically-reflective satin surface. The supplied reso head seemed too thick. I found a reso head from an Acrolite and the Acro's original wires, which were better than the ones that came with the Breakbeats. After installing the head, I affixed the wires with grosgrain ribbon, ditching the thick plastic straps that came with it. I found a G1 in my old stock, and came across a 2.3 mm 14" top S-hoop of 8-lug configuration I had forgotten about. The effect of these was cumulative but of all the things I did, I think the heavier hoop was the source of the single greatest improvement in sound.

The results were not amazing, but the improvements did make for a drum that is at least usable. Due to the soft, low-density wood it is quiet and dry, lacking "crack," but it is surprisingly sensitive and articulate with the improvements, and has a low, "EQ'd sound" that works well in small venues where a better snare might be overwhelming. After the enhancements it sounds like a real snare drum, but not one you'd buy if it didn't come with the kit.

OVERALL

As this is a shell pack, I added some hardware I had on hand: a lightweight snare basket, a lightweight hi had stand, and a lightweight cymbal stand to mount a single crash-ride. Much more hardware than that would defeat the purpose of this light little portable kit.

The whole shell pack easily fits in the back seat of my '02 Mazda sedan. When I took it to its first Jazz Jam, the other musicians poked fun at its diminutive size, until I started playing it. They all commented that they could not believe that such a tiny kit sounded so good. The best part, though, was carrying it in and out of the venue. The drums fit in a set of SKB soft cases (the bass drum, even with all the extra hardware on it, fits in a 16x16 SBK floor tom case; btw, the supplied bags are useless). The snare drum went in an Acrolite backpack case. With snare on my back, I was able to transport the two lightweight toms in my left hand, and the bass drum slung over my right shoulder up the rickety and unrailed switch-back stairs to the Jazz Coop. One more trip with a backpack cymbal bag and carrying a hardware bag is all the gear-schlepping I had to do. Never before have I been able to get all my gear in by myself in two trips.

BOTTOM LINE

The kit looks great, is lightweight and sounds surprisingly good. Necessary upgrades include better batter and reso heads on snare and toms, and a heavier top hoop for the snare drum. Floating floor tom feet, better snare wires and 1.6 mm hoops all around, and perhaps an isolation mount for the tom would be an improvement, but I'm not sure it's worth putting that much money into this kit.

At less cost than a quality snare drum, the Breakbeats are what they are. Not high-end drums, they nevertheless look and sound better than I expected. They play well, amaze the audience and other musicians, and are quick to sto-and-go. They're cool in a kind of a riding-a-tiny-bicycle sort of way.

(15 of 16 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Breakbeats by Questlove Ludwig great job

By Augie

from North Branford, Ct

About Me Experienced

Pros

  • Great Sound
  • Huge Tone
  • Responsive
  • Sensitive
  • Versatile

Cons

  • Too Much Reverb

Best Uses

  • Accompaniment
  • Jazz Clubs
  • Small Venues

Comments about Ludwig Breakbeats by Questlove 4-Piece Shell Pack:

Great sound. Especially when you see the size. Can fit all four drums in the trunk of my car, just not including the hardware and cymbals. Great look. Vintage look. Stock heads are cheap and need replacing. Great bass drum sound and volume. Not all bass drum pedals fit because of the size of the rim. I would recommend to anyone looking for a big great sound but want a smaller kit size.

(12 of 12 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Ludwig Breakbeats - Small Kit, Big Sound

By Cole on Drums

from Nora Springs, IA

About Me Professional Musician

See all my reviews

Ask me a question

Pros

  • Great Sound
  • Portable
  • Small footprint
  • Versatile

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Accompaniment
    • Bar Gigs
    • Jazz Clubs
    • School Bands
    • Small Venues

    Comments about Ludwig Breakbeats by Questlove 4-Piece Shell Pack:

    I am high school band director and percussion major, but aside from education, one of my greatest passions in life is getting out and playing the drums. I have a beautiful Gretch Mahogany kit that I absolutely love (she's my baby), but 1) It's not the most portable, and 2) I would absolutely HATE to see it get dinked or spilled on in a crowded club. Due to my predicament, I began researching smaller "gigging" drum kits earlier this summer and ended up purchasing the Ludwig Breakbeats. I couldn't be more pleased!

    Out of the box, it's not a bad set-up at all. It sets up and breaks down in a flash, and the whole kit can easily fit in the BACK SEAT of my Ford Escape. I also really like the fact that even though it's built with portability in mind, the Breakbeats kit still includes a standard-size 14x5" snare drum. I personally prefer the full sound of a 14" snare, and a lot of the competitor compact kits have 13" snares.

    I did replaced the stock heads with my own preference of Remo heads and also replaced the stock bass drum lift with the one that came with my Gretsch kit (just out of my own personal preference). I found the drums to tune up quickly and easily and work at both high or low tunings. The 7-ply basswood shells are very lightweight, but project like crazy. Even the 16" kick gives a nice thump, although it took more experimentation than the other drums to find the sound I was looking for. After some trial and error, I landed on using a Remo Coated Powerstroke 3 on the batter side and a Smooth White Powerstroke 3 on the resonant side. To eliminate some of the tom-like ring that you can easily get on a 16" bass drum, I taped two cymbal felts to the inside of the batter head; one about an inch in from 11 o'clock and the other an inch in from 7 o'clock. This gives me a nice, slightly open, low end thump.

    The kit looks sharp and with the right heads and tuning, can fit right in to any performance situation. I've played everything from acoustic jazz to loud, amplified rockabilly music and can't get over how many people continually come up after every gig and ask about this snazzy little kit.

    So, if you're a gigging drummer, looking for a kit that can be carried into the club in one trip and can still produce a big, warm, round sound, the Breakbeats definitely fits the bill! Look no further! My highest recommendations!

    (8 of 8 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    Love this kit BIG TIME!!!

    By HowieP

    from Grand Rapids, MI

    About Me Experienced

    Verified Reviewer

    Pros

    • Great Sound
    • Huge Tone
    • Portable
    • Responsive
    • Sensitive
    • Versatile

    Cons

    • No Cons What-so-ever

    Best Uses

    • Accompaniment
    • Anywhere
    • Jazz Clubs
    • Recording
    • Small Venues

    Comments about Ludwig Breakbeats by Questlove 4-Piece Shell Pack:

    LOVE this kit! Played on a big set, which I still have, for years. Before the only small set I had was a Pearl Forum jazz kit that included an 18" kick, 12" rack tom, 14" floor tom, and a 13" snare. This one is even smaller and even more portable than even that! I own a Ford F-150 and all of the shells fit in the cab in the passenger seat. And the sound? MAN! It can hold its own against the bigger kits easily. This has become my main kit to play on because of the portability and I am not disappointed at all!

    (7 of 7 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    Versatile Kit at a great price

    By Funkybassist

    from Texas

    About Me Experienced

    See all my reviews

    Ask me a question

    Verified Reviewer

    Pros

    • Great Sound
    • Huge Tone
    • Responsive
    • Sensitive
    • Versatile

    Cons

    • snare drum possibly

    Best Uses

    • Accompaniment
    • Anything you can think of
    • Gigging
    • Jazz Clubs
    • Large Venues with PA support
    • Small Venues

    Comments about Ludwig Breakbeats by Questlove 4-Piece Shell Pack:

    I got this on sale a while back so I pretty much got it for a steal. I've actually been a bassist for the longest time 17ish years but took up drums at our local church due to not having a drummer. Been doing that for a few years now and although I still consider myself a bassist, I almost consider myself a drummer, lol. All I can say is I love this kit! Small with a big sound. I was looking at the catalina clubs but mostly just needed something to practice at home with that didn't take up a lot of space so I didn't want to pay the price of the catalina. This was the answer and it has delivered. I haven't gigged much with it but it does deliver when needed. Attack is great sustain and sustain is perfect if you ask me. The biggest complaint is the snare. Just doesn't have that "quality" feel but honestly, it still sounds good with new heads and some puresound blaster snare wires. I also replace all the heads on the set as well and added a kickport to the bass drum. The difference with the kickport is negligible but it did make it a little tighter and less boomy. I also like that I can put a gibraltor boom stand on the opposite side of the tome holder. Makes it even more compact. If you read my rambling this far down, then you have to go buy it because that means you probably really want it! Don't hesitate, you won't regret it!

    (7 of 7 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    A Nice Set of Drums

    By TyGuy

    from New Jersey

    About Me Experienced

    See all my reviews

    Pros

    • Compact
    • Easy To Transport
    • Great Sound
    • Great Vintage Look
    • Huge Tone
    • Quick Breakdown
    • Quick Breakdownsetup
    • Quick Setup
    • Responsive
    • Small footprint
    • Tight Tone
    • Versatile

    Cons

    • Sticker Instead Of Badge

    Best Uses

    • Jazz Clubs
    • Small Venues

    Comments about Ludwig Breakbeats by Questlove 4-Piece Shell Pack:

    I have been playing drums since I was young boy and have been a formally-trained drummer and percussionist for most of my life. I presently teach music to middle school and high school students. I have owned several sets of drums over this period of time. I had been playing with the idea of picking up one of these kits to use for rehearsals, small gigs, etc. instead of my Gretsch Renown with a Gibraltar rack. I liked the idea of the small footprint. I was a bit skeptical about these kits, so I checked them out in person prior to placing the order for my Azure sparkle. I am so glad I did. The bass drum sounds like a cannon. If you know how to dial in a set of drums, these are for you. I have found that I can get several types of desired/fitting sounds from this kit after dialing in the tuning to fit the venue. They look and sound great. Great vintage look! You won't be sorry snatching one of these up. I am very choosy about my drums and these do NOT disappoint. My only small complaint is that it is not "badged," but "stickered" instead. I can live with that given their great look and sound.

    (7 of 7 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    Great Kit

    By Damien

    from Strasburg, VA

    About Me Experienced

    Pros

    • Great Sound
    • Versatile

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • Home
      • Jazz Venues
      • Small gigs

      Comments about Ludwig Breakbeats by Questlove 4-Piece Shell Pack:

      When I first saw this kit, I knew I had to have it. The Breakbeats kit is all Basswood shells, with a Azure Blue Sparkle wrap finish, which looks extremely good and vintage. I didn't really know what to expect because I have never really seen a kit like this, but because it looked so good at such a cheap price, I bought it. After I tuned it up, WOW was I surprised, this thing sounds like a normal sized kit! Even the super small 16x14 bass has some punch to it. The snare has a nice pop when tuned high and toms tune up really easy. Also, the floor tom can be tuned surprisingly low. I would recommend swapping out the stock heads for Remo pinstripes and an emperor on the snare, thought the stock heads sound pretty great for being "stock" heads. For the money, you really cant beat the Breakbeats kit. It comes with bags for each individual drum, a bass drum raiser, some Ludwig sticks and a drum key. If you don't have a lot of space or your just looking for a small kit with a tone of sound, this kit is for you.

      (6 of 6 customers found this review helpful)

       
      5.0

      Small kit, Massive sound

      By FunkyDrumma

      from Boston, MA

      About Me Experienced

      Pros

      • Great Sound
      • Huge Tone
      • Responsive
      • Sensitive
      • Stylish
      • Unique
      • Versatile

      Cons

      • Hard To Find Bass Heads

      Best Uses

      • Funk
      • Gigging
      • Recording
      • Small Venues
      • Soundtracks

      Comments about Ludwig Breakbeats by Questlove 4-Piece Shell Pack:

      This little kit is flat out amazing. I wanted one the moment I first saw one.

      Right out of the box I was astounded by how good the Azure Sparkle wrap looked. Great vintage look with a little more personality than many standard wraps. The hardware felt a little thin, but that's to be expected with an economy priced kit, but it's proven durable so far. The riser is simple but effective. It takes a little bit of adjustment to figure out how to get the pedal chain to clear the hoop but that's not a huge issue.

      The stock heads are garbage, but since that's my opinion on all Remo heads that's just to be expected. I bought a set of Aquarian Performance 2s for the tom batters, some Aquarian Classic Clears as the resonants... A Studio X for the snare, and a Superkick 2 as the bass batter and this kit tuned up to sound twice as big as it looks. Kept the Ludwig bass reso but threw in a KickPort FX2 and it just has that great low-end you'd expect from a larger bass.

      The snare leaves much to be desired, but with a little bit of tweaking it puts out a decent sound. I added a Pearl M80 as a side snare (and as the main snare for smaller venues) and it blends very well with the overall tone of the drums.

      I swapped out the metal bass hoops for some 10 ply wood ones. It had a bit of effect on the tone, but it mostly just added that one element that just was missing for the perfect vintage vibe to me.

      All in all, I'd recommend this kit to ANYBODY, as long as they're willing to put in the effort to locate a 16 inch bass batter (presently Aquarian is the only one that makes one, with the exception of marching heads). I get complimented on the look and the sound of this little beast all the time. For the price, jump on this thing people. (

      (6 of 6 customers found this review helpful)

       
      4.0

      fun little kit

      By TPS Report

      from Cola, SC

      See all my reviews

      Comments about Ludwig Breakbeats by Questlove 4-Piece Shell Pack:

      Some details and comments regarding the package:

      - arrives in one medium sized box, some assembly required
      - includes a small drum key for assembly
      - includes a pair of sticks
      - stock kick drum batter head is similar to pinstripe, with a extra ring on perimeter for tone/ring control I assume
      - stock batter heads on toms are a clear pinstripe style, not sure if single or dual ply
      - stock snare batter head is white coated type
      - heads are labeled REMO/Ludwig CS
      - the included tom mount has an extra universal clamp to mount something else later

      I got this as my first kit for something to mess with as I have played around on my drummers stuff for many years here and there but wanted to put something small together for myself to practice on. I chose these because of the size, cost, and they were neat looking and I wanted something different.

      The shells seem somewhat thin, but it is a low cost kit so that was expected. The sparkle blue finish looks great, the color is a shade darker than I expected.

      The rims and lugs seem a bit thinner than I expected, but again not surprised. The kick drum riser is a simple bracket, but looks like it will work fine.

      I did not use the stock heads so I cannot comment on the sound of those heads. I installed coated ambassadors on the toms and snare, and an Aquarian Super Kick II on the kick drum. Those heads seem to work nicely on the kit. The kick drum has a great punch. I tested it with the front head in place, and head removed and decided for my I prefer the more open sound, so I installed a Aquarian port hole in the front and cut a hole offset to the side. This will allow the bigger sound and also more flexibility with putting a mic inside.

      The floor tom legs seem a little short, I had to raise mine up to the end to get it in position I liked.

      The drums are very small in person, but they don't look like a toy. I experimented with tuning the toms as low as I could get them and have them still have resonance and good tension, I'm pretty happy with the results. The snare was a bit tricky to get the ring out. I ended up adding a Aquarian studio ring which worked great.

      My drumming buddies have tried it out and given a thumbs up on the playability. I think they sound interesting, not a big rock kit sound, but cool.

      (5 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

       
      5.0

      Small footprint, versatile sound

      By Pudge

      from Tyler, TX

      About Me Novice

      Pros

      • Breakable
      • Easy Transport
      • Great Sound
      • Minimalist
      • Responsive
      • Versatile

      Cons

        Best Uses

        • Accompaniment
        • Acoustic
        • Jazz Clubs
        • Live
        • School Bands
        • Small Venue
        • Small Venues

        Comments about Ludwig Breakbeats by Questlove 4-Piece Shell Pack:

        I have this drums since March and since it is my only set, I use it to every gig we do about once a month. It came with one box almost similar size as large moving box from home improvement stores. This is my very first drum set ever.

        I bought it because it is affordable and has a small foot print. Sound is ok with the stock heads and can keep up with the tuning of the samples from the Alesis DM10 processor. The shell pack actually fits in my front passenger side of my compact car for transport. Would also be a great practice set for folks with more than 1 set.

        Next thing to do, find the perfect head to produce the best sound that suites my liking. As of this writing, this set is used as part of my hybrid electro-acoustic kit.

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