I purchased the 22 inch black cortex version since it was marked down a little. After watching and reading a ton of reviews I decided to purchase it. HOLY COW this set sounds and plays wonderfully!! It has a warm punchy sound, great response and is very lightweight to lug to gigs. Don't let that scare you, it's VERY well built. The only things to note is that the wrap is nothing flashy, which I'm sure helped keep the cost of a USA made Ludwig set under a grand. Also, the bass drum spurs are set at a standard length which didn't bother me in the least, but worth noting in case you're picky about that. I immediately put on Remo Emperor clear heads on it and that maple/cherrywood came to life! It's my professional gig set, but with the sound quality of this set, it would do wonders in the studio. Also, the people at Sam Ash were an absolute pleasure to work with. Thumbs up all around!