Pearl Export Series

There are different views on the Pearl Export Series in the world. It does not surprise me because, by 1995, Pearl had already shipped over a million kits, with different versions coming in after that.

In this review, I will focus on one of the most recent models, the EXX model introduced in 2013. This is one of my favorite Pearl Export Series kits because it can be a great choice among beginner-to-intermediate drum sets on the market.

Your Purpose when You are gonna Buy a Drum Set

When I went for my first drum set, it was because I wanted to start a band and needed to know how things work first. This was my purpose, and it led me to choose the most valuable asset.

You need to know why you want the drum set.

Start with a budget-friendly drum kit, or an electric set, if you can’t be too noisy, and then grow as you learn more.

About The Pearl EXX

There are two versions of the Pearl EXX with varying different shell sizes.

  • The Pearl EXX725. It carries a 22-inch bass drum, 12- inch, 13-inch, and 16-inch toms.
  • The Pearl EXX725S. It carries a 22” bass drum, 10-inch, 12-inch, and 16-inch toms.

Both setups offer equal experience, with each having pros and cons. The EXX725S offer a more extensive tonal range, but there seem to be a little hole in tone between the 12-inch and 16-inch tom. That hole is not in the Pearl EXX725, which in contras has a smaller range of tones. The choice depends on what you are looking for, though it won’t matter if you set them up correctly.

Both versions come with additional:

  • 14 by 5.5 snare
  • A P930 Demonator bass drum pedal
  • Hi-hat stand
  • A straight cymbal stand and a boom cymbal stand.

An excellent alternative for EXX725S is the Pearl Export EXL. They very much echo each other in terms of features and performance.  

Features and benefits

I was looking at some features, comparing with other sets, and the Pearl EXX carried the day. Consider the following.

Superior Shell technology

The Pearl EXX is made with a “Superior Shell Technology” that is the pride or Pearl. In simple words, they are very tight, making them great on resonance. If you are looking for a better tone, therefore, I would recommend you take this kit. It is my favorite, anyways.

Another excellent technology on this product is Pearl’s “Opti Loc” mounting system for the toms. Peal has really tried avoiding holes on the upper toms. This is one of the things that affect resonance. Meaning, the toms on the Pearl EXX resonate excellently.

Note, however, that you won’t be 100% free with toms positioning. You will have to work with the preset levels. But you still get the best tonal quality.

Every drummer understands the importance of wood in the sound production of the shells. The Pearl EXX uses poplar. So if you are looking for something different, you may need to consider maple. Because Poplar is mostly associated with lower-priced drum sets, many people frown at Pearl Export for using it.

It is no secret that maple vibrates more because it is thicker. It gives a darker tone while poplar gives a brighter tone.

Note, however, as I have commented above, that most people’s ears are not trained well. It is not easy telling maple from poplar just through listening.

Heads and sound

Simply tuning the heads on Pearl EXX will not give you the most decent sound. In my experiments, while trying to bring out the best in my drum kit, I used tape. But still, the issue with stock heads was not resolved. I did not achieve the recording quality I desired.

I understand, however, that is a typical issue for drum sets sold at such prices. The good news is you can fix this issue.

You can give your Pearl Export set a fabulous sound by buying new heads and tunes. You should be ready to invest in your kits if you want to see a difference. 

Another important aspect of this feature is that your arrangements will determine the quality of what comes out. In my experience, I have met different challenges tuning my drum right, but I only figured it out by trying with different setups. Since it is easy to set the Pearl EXX, it won’t be long before you become an expert.

Sturdy hardware

I used to have so many issues with my hardware. I am one of those people you can call “ crazy drummers.” I want to be in the drums and take charge, which made most of my gear break.

The Pearl EXX has resolved this issue with their double-braced stands. The hardware is sturdy and can last for a very long time. Even if you are continually playing live and assembling/disassembling your kit, it will still serve you long.

You get one more “boom” stand for mounting the third cymbal. In contract to cheaper Pearl Roadshow, these stands are more versatile compared to straight ones.

Another beautiful feature here is the pedal. Different from other sets I have seen, it is not only nice looking but is modeled on the professional Eliminator model from the same company. This makes it the best pedal for its price range.

Something about the cymbals

The EXX kit does not include cymbals. Well, that is a shame, but normal.

Many top drum manufacturers don’t produce cymbals. You can find cymbals on cheaper kits, but they are never impressive.

You can always buy cymbals. The best approach would be buying pocket-friendly cymbal packs instead of buying each cymbal individually. It is cheaper this way.

Things to consider when buying a drum set

From my experience, I ‘ve found the Pearl Export Series a good drum set because it is highly versatile and suitable for all kinds of drum players. Is that cool, right?

In general, I like the Pearl Drum Sets because of their amazing sound and overall quality.

I have been playing drums for over fifteen years now, and I can say that I have well-trained ears.

Even with my experience, yet listening alone does not enable me to tell the difference in terms of sounds between similar models from the same brand. I know just a few people that can tell the difference between maple and poplar, only listening to the sound.

So if you are interested in a drum set built with maple, perhaps you should look for another alternative. The Export Series won’t work for you. Consider instead this drum set review for beginners. I find the Pearl Export Series more suitable for all kinds of drum players. That is cool, right?

However, many people are not well-trained with ears. For instance, I have been playing drums for over fifteen years. Yet listening alone does not enable me to tell the difference between specific models in terms of sounds. For me to know a maple from a poplar, I have to listen.

So if you are interested in something like maple, perhaps you should look for another alternative. Export won’t work for you. Consider this drum set review for beginners.

Otherwise … let’s see what you need to consider in a drum set.

The Setup

Every drum set comes in different setup options. I think it is best to go for a set that makes you look professional. That is the reason I am in love with the Pearl Export EXX.

They say people judge you as a musician from the way you look. The way you set your equipment very much tells about your playability.

Apart from this, consider the number of pieces in the drum set. It could be a 3-set piece or a complete 5-piece set with cymbals.

Another important factor to look at is that it’s easy to set up. It will determine how easy to play.

The size of your set

A drum set size is important because you need to play easily and comfortably. I like them big because I am taller. This enables me to access the drums, pedals, and the cymbals with easy. Go for something that complements your size.

Social Proof

Before I bought this set, I wanted to know how other people felt about it. It is just one of the things I do when purchasing any stuff. Many of them were quite positive. Many think it such a quality set for its price. Here are some:


You cannot buy Pearl Export quality on a small budget.

Therefore, if you are reluctant on spending some good bucks on Pearl Export, here are some excellent alternatives drum sets for you.

Mendini Drum Sets

Here is the cheapest, and perhaps the most useful practice kit on the market. It is easy to assembly and a great set for beginners. It comes with everything included to start playing. Apart from being budget-friendly, it comes with cymbals, which is not in the Pearl EXX. But the cymbals are not of good quality.

In case you want more information on these products, I have included a link to the reviews. Feel free to dig deeper.

The Pearl Roadshow Review

The Pearl Roadshow is based on advanced Pear technologies.

It is an earlier production, but one that is amazing on the road.

It is cheaper than that the Pearl EXX, which makes it a great option. Since it is from Pearl, perhaps you will find it more compelling.

It comes with cymbals, but not the best ones.

Consider that Its tone is not as sharp as those of Pearl EXX, but it is so lovely and vintage. I love it!

Tama Imperialstar Drum Set

Tama is an excellent brand in the drum world.

They have been around for long, and the Tama Imperialstar Drum Set is a fantastic 5-Piece drum set and it proves their quality.

The most significant difference with the Pear EXX is that it comes with cymbals inclusive.

It is also best on the budget. However, the Pearl EXX sounds better, in my opinion.


The Pearl EXX comes with an excellent hardware set. It looks professional, just like any high-end drum set. Though the poplar shells may make it less adorable, it still brings out an even tone studio recording. Pearl Export promises quality, and that is what you get.

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