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I want to understand " ATTACK"

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  • I want to understand " ATTACK"

    Obviously 'ATTACK' must mean something because in drum head descriptions " the drum head has attack ". I have seen drum heads that definitely have been attacked or currently under attack. Maybe it's another one of those blind concepts to make you feel you got something other than you bought a drum head. Which drum with it's drum head has better attack? Does a snare drum head have better attack or different attack than my Tom's? How bout the floor tom drum heads do they have attack? How bout my brand new Remo Powersonic clear bass drum batter head; does this head have attack or is it better played if i attack it?
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  • #2
    It's hard to define sounds with words. Terms like "bright," "dark," "warm," etc. are words better interpreted with other senses, but they are often used in marketing material to describe sounds.

    I tried to write up some definitions myself, but I found this thread from another forum that is probably better than what I could come up with. I'm pretty sure "Bermuda" who made the third post in the linked thread is Bermuda Schwartz (Weird Al drummer), so he has some credibility.

    https://www.drummerworld.com/forums/...ms-mean.64384/
    I have lots of drums...

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    • #3
      Now that I have had time to practice on the latest replacement of three drums heads 8" in 10 " inch and bass batter. Hey look, new heads always make a difference and mostly positive and to me these new heads feel better when i strike each of these heads. It seems that 'Attack' becomes when the striking of the head responses are inline what i expect . Basically can we perhaps believe a new head has better attack than heads in position of 2 years or more depending on play time and conditions like tuning and environment.
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      • #4
        yes i went to the drummers world link and shows i was part right on my guess was inline
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        • #5
          Hailey (D'Addario) wrote me and gave me this description ( used by permission )
          Hey Patrick,

          Thank you for reaching out! When referring to a drum heads "attack", most of the time drummers/manufacturers are referring to the sharp "crack" sound when you first hit the drum head with a drum stick. The higher the attack, the more pronounced that "crack" will sound! The amount of attack enjoyed by drummers is all player preference, so there really isn't a defined sample of "bad attack" or "good attack"! We manufacture drum heads with different materials for less or more attack, or less or more of a "crack" when striking the drum. As an example, our calftone snare batter heads are designed using a synthetic material that mimics the tone of true calf skin. These heads have a very balanced attack, meaning that they have a more mellow tone on initial strike. In contrast, our hydraulic snare batters and manufactured using 2 plies of film with a thin layer of oil in between to provide damping of unwanted overtones. These have a more defined attack, meaning that the initial "crack" upon striking the head will be more pronounced and snappy.

          I hope this helps, please let me know if you have any further questions,

          Thanks so much,
          Hailey - Consumer Support Specialist
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          • #6
            Don't you just love it when someone uses subject descriptors to describe subjective descriptors?

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Feenix View Post
              Don't you just love it when someone uses subject descriptors to describe subjective descriptors?
              Why yes, that drives me bat******, why do you ask? Lol
              sigpicStill Way Too Much Crap

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              • #8
                The easiest way I can describe "attack" is how much "slap" the initial transient/strike has when you strike an instrument. It's all about that transient and attack is what let's those strikes poke through a mix and actually be heard/felt.

                Probably the easiest way to directly hear what's going on when people use that word to describe things is grab almost any compressor and start messing with the attack knob. You will be able to hear that initial strike get softer or harsher right away!
                Originally posted by barjack
                Even poo can sparkle if you've recently eaten glitter.

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                • #9
                  TAMA has attack. They’re very aggressive drums. I’d say anything that dissolves a kidney stone. They have a thump that kicks you in your nether parts. Warm is more Gretschy whereas Pearl has a sharp bite, also defined as attack. I’d say if it pierces the amps, it’s attack.

                  I break down the companies as follows: Warm: Gretsch and Yamaha. Attack: TAMA and Pearl. Boomy: Ludwig. Thuddy: DW. Mapex: rounded attack. Sonor: rounded attack and deep warmth, but lacks bite. Don’t jump me on that comment. Even Danny Carey said he wanted more attack and thus went to rotos.
                  Last edited by RK; 11-22-2021, 11:36 PM.

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