I try to approach all reviews I conduct in a very clinical, objective, straightforward manner. So, to be completely straightforward about Evans’ new Power Center tom heads — I love these heads!!! I’ll get into the technical side of things and more of a complete description, I promise, but the fact is, I fell in love with the sound of these heads from the get-go. They slipped onto my drums and tuned up so easily that, within a matter of minutes, I had a sound with which I was supremely satisfied. I will tell you right now: I plan to use these heads on my kit.
Now for the analytical part. Power Center tom heads are the latest offering from Evans, which the company describes as “offering vintage sound through contemporary design. Compared to other single-ply heads, Evans’ Power Center Tom Heads offer a full-bodied tone with great attack, increased durability, and impeccable focus. These heads are ideal for players who prefer that classic ’70s sound but require modern consistency and quality.” The quote is overly long, but I couldn’t say it any better myself. I might quibble with the term vintage, but this is truly a case of a company’s product living up to its marketing.
About that consistency, I have found Evans to be extremely consistent on every front, and this batch of heads did not disappoint. Evans sent me Power Center tom heads in 12", 13", 15", 16", and 18" sizes, and the out-of-the-box experience for all sizes was uniformly positive — metal collars that sat perfectly on a glass surface, evenly crimped heads, good quality construction. The box itself has a handy-dandy reference sticker with a bevy of information about the head that lies within. Let’s run it down as the sticker does.
The sticker lists “Construction” as 10mil 1-ply (sizes 6"–12"), 12mil 1-ply (sized 13"–18"), plus a 3mil reverse dot. The dot sizes are graduated with head size as to create a balanced sound across drums. I wondered about the ply thickness varying between smaller and larger sizes, but I tried the 12" and 13" heads next to each other and they definitely sounded like family.
Next on the sticker is “Sound,” listed as “dense mid-range with increased punch, while maintaining the tone and stick response of a single ply.” Can’t argue with that. The heads fit easily on the drums and tune up very quickly. The tone is mid-range-ish with a nice level of sustain. I would somewhat agree with Evans that the sound is “vintage,” but I think that might put too fine of a point on it.
I hear a full, controlled sound with a nice level of attack. The head’s sustain is not that of a thinner, more jazz-oriented head, but that is not what these are about. Let’s cut to the chase: These heads are rock heads, pure and simple. Utilizing that sound for any other genre is up to you — and in fact highly recommended, but instead of vintage, let’s just say rock. The sound is focused and ready for a roundhouse kick.
And these mothers hold up. I’ve been wailing at them with a big ol’ pair of Vic Firth American Metal nylon-tip sticks and only leaving tell-tale red marks (is Tommy Lee smiling somewhere?). Vintage may conjure Krupa with a big band, where these are more Rev. Van Halen on the 20’ riser.
The heads feature graduated film thickness (10mil for 6-12" and 12mil for 13"–18") and graduated dot sizes to create a balanced sound across the kit. The stress-relieved metalized dot flexes for an unchoked response.
Love ’em. Evans’ new Power Center tom heads completely live up to their billing. It’s a modern take on an old-school setup that really works.