Mapex just took on more than they can chew at the moment. It will take a while for them to get out from under it. Unfortunately once they do get things up and running properly, they are still going to be a fast food drum company. Pearl is kicking everyone's butt at the moment. They had a very good NAMM, and seem to be offering what people want, not just what they want to sell. Their customer service also seems second to none. They have a great presence on their site daily to help with any questions or issues. If only they would change their damn tom mounts and tom arms, I could take them more seriously.
Mapex had a great thing going here on Augie's site. There was Mapex interest, which is very hard to find anywhere else on the web. Now there is basically none! Every site I go on, Mapex is treated like the ugly step sister. If they loose the few die hards that exist on this site, they will loose more than they think. Judging by how they are treating my latest order, I don't think they are really worried. So be it. Time will tell how this all unfolds. Augie and I have done a crap load of promoting for this company, but I see that coming to an end.
Pearl did revamp and do a little retooling this winter NAMM.. I saw the YouTube Joe Hibbs presentation of the Storm series ..smh. As much as I like the Mapex brand, all the chatter here about their smug attitudes and less than acceptable customer service is making me almost rethink this purchase. I mean, what if I have a warranty issue down the line with a shell or shiny bit off a drum? What if I want to order another component? With what the thread op and Glenn have been experiencing plus the QC issues cropping up with cracked lacquer on some of the Saturn series shells, I just wonder if even a meager investment with the Mars series is the best option at this point. Remember that I don't necessarily need this drum set. I could use it for gigs and recording and for that it would fit the bill. I just wonder about Pearl's new Decade series maple drums. I can get the kit outfitted with the same sizes, (16x20", 7x10", 8x12",..) for probably the same street price as Mars. The thing that hooked me with Mars was the price cut I got at my LDS and the fact that it was a leftover that included the free 8" tom. Now I wonder.
At any rate, I think more research is warranted. I am not too easily dissuaded by a few what could be isolated incidents, but I know I work darn hard for my money and if I'm gonna make a purchase..even a more meager one, I'd expect the company that produces that product to be forthright and back up what they are peddling.
Hmmmm. Pearl Decade...?
I'm getting ready to get some articles publicshed for new drum products in our news section, basically a review of NAMM goodies from everyone. On Mapex's website they only show 1 product for Namm 2016. Checking their Facebook page we see almost nothing also. Checking the Twitter page I seen 1 announcement.
In short Pearl tore it up this year and I mean they ripped the pants off everyone as far as I am concerned. Not only did Pearl bring in tons of new stuff the stuff they brought in was directed right at Mapex's lines and with a twist.. All Maple kits priced so low your head will spin circles for days and weeks or possibly even months. Not only this, Pearl cuts right to the mustard on one of their series using and I quote, North American Maple... yes... I love it when a manufacturer tells you what you're buying at a price range of it sounds like around 1400.00 USD. In all Pearl had this below:
new choice of Fiberglass inner ply
new choice of nickel drum hardware
new snare sizes 15x5, 15x5.5, 15x6.5
Reference & Reference Pure
new special order finishes: #111 Matte Natural, #329 Burnished Bronze Sparkle, #345 Satin Auburn
new option for Nickel Hardware on drums
Music City Custom (MCC)
Choose from 43 drum sizes, 29 beautiful covered finishes
Reference or Reference Pure shell specifications
Our goal is to complete each Music City Custom kit within 14 business days from the date we receive your order
Masters Maple Reserve (MRV)
4-ply 5mm Maple shells with reinforcement rings
Masters Maple Complete (MCT)
6-ply Maple shells with four piece shell packs starting at $1499.00
New 26x14 bass drum size and shell pack option
Crystal Beat Series
New 24x14 bass drum size
100% Maple shell pack with 5.4mm thin ply shells, lacquer finishes, a lifetime warranty and all for $699
Elevated 16x14 bass drum, 10x7 tom, 13x12 floor tom, and 13x5.5 snare
Dennis Chambers Signature Snare Drum
3mm Cast Aluminum Shell 12 lugs on the batter side and 8 lugs on the snare side
Eliminator Redline Series
Pedals now with Ninja bearings
P2050C Eliminator Redline single chain drive
P2050B Eliminator Redline single belt drive
P2051C Eliminator Redline double chain drive
P2052B Eliminator Redline double belt drive
RH2050 Eliminator Redline remote hi-hat
H2050 Eliminator Redline Hi-Hat
H1050 Direct Drive Hi-Hat
150 Series Flat Based Convertible Hardware
BC150S Boom Cymbal Stand
C150S Cymbal Stand
S150S Snare Stand
H150S Hi-Hat Stand
CH830S new short boom cymbal holder - Uni-Lock Tilter; 7/8" Diameter Post with Stop Lock
D50 drum throne
The all in one tool designed to work on any Pearl product
Hex Keys: 2mm, 2.5mm, 3mm, 4mm, 5mm & 6mm
Screwdrivers: 1.5mm, 5mm, and Phillips #00, #1 & #2
Additional: Drum Key, Bottle Opener
HWB338 Hardware Bag
Designed to hold the entire 150 Series flat based stands and so much more PMTBG Bag Set Designed to hold the new Midtown Series kit for the drummer on the go
BDMF Bass Drum Muffler
Yet all I can really find of Mapex is the Storm? There wa a time NAMM was treated like Christmas. Around here everyone knew that time of year at one time and we teased Members with new product announcements terribly. We had tons of traffic with people just waiting to see what was next. Didn't seem like much new or much excitment this year. Maybe I'm missing something?
Also to be fair here there was not a whole lot from other manufacturers as far as I could tell. Ludwig had some stuff but not like Pearl. The Ludwig display of the Van Halen kit was outstanding. That kit is a blood pressure raiser for sure to look at. I drool dreaming at the thought of playing it.