Pearl is not a new name in the world of high-quality and yet affordable drum sets. It has been making these products for some time now, and the EXR is one of its top lines.
Value for Money
- A solid set, well equipped for varying tonal feature
- Beautiful sounding
- Great sounds, especially with the bass drum
- Poplar shells
- The shell pack options are too basic
With its upgraded shells and top market finishes, this drum kit is taking over the Export series. It will not go unnoticed with any keen drummer.
In this guide, we will be looking at the features that make this set an outstanding choice.
The set comes as another strong package from the manufacturer. You will like it right from the start, owing to the Blue Strata wrap that stands out from anywhere.
Unlike the previous versions, the new kit comes with an all-poplar shell construction, which is a great necessity for any modern drummer.
As you would expect from any Pearl product, the nuts and bolts are all designed to deliver high-quality service.
Generally, this kit is well made and equipped to ensure a solution for your drumming needs. It looks great as it sounds excellent. Both the drums and the heads are made with high-quality standards – everything you can expect from one of the world’s best manufacturers.
The Pearl Export series was launched about twenty years ago. And since it came out today, it’s a drum set that a non-drummer will tell you about.
Pearl has gone an extra mile, from the drums to the beautiful finish, to ensure to have everything you need for a good drum set.
Pearl Export is two words that have entered the market for good reasons and remain so every year. There is no other drum set on the planet that has come close to Export in terms of sales.
There are three distinct tiers in this series, each with varying features that stand out from the rest. The EX is plain wrapped, the Select ELX with range-topping lacquer finishes, and the Pearl EXR, which comes with a bold retro wrapping, which is our focus in this review.
Considering the features, construction, and popularity of this set, it’s obviously made for the lower market. Even the price tag tells it all.
However, it comes with certain features that you will not find in many products at this price range, making it a perfect choice for experienced drummers.
Anyone can use this drum kit, as long as they have set their needs specifically. A professional drummer can buy it as a practice kit, and it will do just fine.
This kit is made to deliver high-end services. The shells are constructed strongly to ensure long service. Hence, you can buy and play these Pearl kits for a long time without having to change them.
The construction quality is not like anything you would expect at this price range, and yet it’s a perfect tool for the modern drummer.
EXR Drums and Build
You can get the drum set in three shell packs, which you can choose depending on your needs. The first choice is the popular 22 Fusion kit with a 22-inch bass drum, a 14-inch snare, and 10, 12, and 14-inch toms.
The second configuration is another 22 Rock kit with the same sized bass and snare. But the toms are 12 by 18-inch, 12 by 9-inch, and 14 by 11-inch.
One the third option, you get a funny-sounding mix known as a 20 Rock. The set comes with a 20 by 16-inch bass drum and the same snare and tom sizes as the 22-Fusion. Any Pearl snare is always good, and this is no different.
The whole Export series has gone through a fundamental change in its manufacturing. In the previous versions, the shells were long made from mahogany. But now they are all made from poplar, which is better both in sound and durability.
But that is not the only reason you would want to try out this drum set. There are factors too.
However, it’s clear that Pearl is focusing more on Poplar kits as they are making them every year. It seems they want to make this permanent as the material is sustainable indefinitely, unlike mahogany.
The poplar is constructed the same as the previous models, with a 7.3mm deep, 6-ply sandwich. It is then tied withing Pearl’s signature scarf joints, making strong drum sets with a wide tonal range.
One thing that makes the wood stand out that it’s lighter in color, and some brightness is displayed from the inside of these shells. This could be due to a coating of white stain.
As you may notice quickly, they have simply been sanded to a tidy finish with suitably ship-shaped bearing edges.
Another cool feature you want to note is the vintage design. This marble/onyx construction is one of the most popular approaches on the market, and it makes them look nice on the side. The snare drum, like any other Pearl drum set, stands out.
They are colored with a shade of blue, which is compatible with any finish type and appears excellent under the lights. This wrap is called Blue Strata and comes in three colors, black, white, and red.
If you don’t want the finish, the Prism wrap is equally a good finish, although it only comes in blue and purple colors.
Pearl has tried to bridge the gap but included bridge-style ventilated lugs found on higher lines of drums by the company. And this is one of the reasons the kit is incredibly useful.
The bridge lugs are used following an idea to reduce contact with shells. The lugs’ part that normally lies flat against the shells has been hollowed. They are set between two fixing bolts creating something like the span of a bridge. They give the bass drum and the snare enough stamina, just like the toms.
Many drummers who use Pearl drum sets understand how the company works in terms of setting quality standards. Pearl uses these drum sets as a show off for the incredible chroming the firm uses, delivering a good effect.
Of course, doing this must have taken some thinking. Consider the brushed metal badge on each drum, for instance. This is something you will not find on many kits at this price range. It may seem like a simple badge, but it’s tuning is perfect, like the kit’s general appearance. It has a subtle appearance that allows for shining on the wrap and contrasting chrome lugs.
Other features on the drums
We looked at the bass drum claws and noticed how they add details to the kit’s general appearance. They are chunky, with a recess that nicely locates the tuning rods. They also feature a rubber lining that keeps them from getting into the line of wooden hoops.
Single-ply Protone heads are used in the entire set. These are more than adequate at this range. However, the technology is becoming very common by the day, and now it’s found on even some low-priced products. They come fitted with branded heads from top makers.
Also, most of the ranges from Pearl feature Remo heads. Perhaps it won’t be long before you starting seeing them on their Export line.
And then comes the toms, which are carried on the ISS mounts from Pearl’s top lines of the hardware. This system allows them to simply clamp to the toms hoop before sliding into a normal tom arm.
Sometimes you can get non-penetrating mounts, which could make things hard. But one can resolve this by holding the toms loosely to allow movement when you play. Doing this allows the ISS mounts to fix themselves strongly in the hoops.
Some users raised concerns that they seemed to loosen. But we never experienced this. Everything holds perfectly in place, no matter how hard you play.
The snare bears complete Pearl quality. It is above any other snare drum at this price range.
Pearl Export EXR Drumming Experience
We started tuning the rods, and they all worked smoothly. Our drummers then played them hard for two hours, subjecting them to the harshest punishment. They gave in to a great fight all through.
The poplar is hard, which makes it give out a distinct character on the drum kits. It will cut through nicely without sounding too harsh.
Something on the initial attack made these drums sound professional. You get a lot of meat on the lower tones too.
The bass assures a beautiful ‘blat,’ well balanced by a round deep not under. It gives a truly defining mix of crispness and crunch. This makes it highly authoritative.
Pearl’s hardware on the kit does not disappoint either. Sturdy double-braced stands with tripod shives are all well-appointed.
P-120P bass drum pedal is another addition that creates an environment of professionalism. Its design is like the Eliminator, assuring top performance. And the hi-hat stand ensures tom performance.
EXR Export Series Price
This Export set can be found in several stores at different prices. It is an affordable kit that will not cost you more than $550, depending on your configuration.
• A solid set, well equipped for varying tonal features
• Great sounds, especially with the bass drum
- Poplar shells
• Beautiful sounding
• The shell pack options are too basic
Getting a good drum kit takes more than just price consideration. This Pearl drum kit is one of those strong packages that prove this point. It is an affordable yet highly effective kit in Blue Strata Finish that you will find very useful. Besides, Pearl is one of the best drum brands around.