Over the past few years, electronic drums, mistakenly called ‘electric drums,’ have gained a lot of popularity. This is because they have improved quite well. Some of the best drums in this category offer the experience of playing an acoustic drum set.
I never thought I would find electronic drums interesting. But then, I got to try out their physical hardware, including racks and highly responsive rubber or mesh pads. And then the excellent trigger technology brings beautiful sounds with every strike of the pad. With these, you might not need anything better than an electronic drum set,
As if not enough, the best e-kits come with sounds and expression technology beyond your imagination. Manufacturers are constantly competing for the best position; hence there are technological aspects of these drums that are better than ever heard before.
And because e-drums are so awesome, they are great for quiet home practice. And this one of the reasons they are becoming more and more popular among drummers.
And there is an electronic drum set for every player’s needs. You will find practice pads and toys for beginners and children to more sophisticated pieces for advanced drummers. So are you a beginner who needs more practice hours in a quiet environment? Or a pro looking for reliability, portability, performance control over sound – on stage or studio? There is an excellent solution for you.
And between these two categories, you will still find great intermediate drum kits. For instance, there are kits built to look more like acoustic and compact kits for limited space.
What Is The Best Electronic Drum Set Right Now?
As I have mentioned above, there are so many electronic sets on the market today. For this reason, choosing the right one can be overwhelming. But choosing the best electronic drum set can be easy too.
The first thing to consider is the price. If, say you are loaded with cash burning a hole in your pocket, the one of the best options could be the Roland TD-50KVX. In terms of technology, sounds, and hardware, this is my personal favorite. It is a perfect solution from the studio to the stage situations. And the technology under the hood will not disappoint. It’s designed to help reach your drumming potential, offering dynamic, expressive feedback throughout your exercise.
But I would not recommend this kit for a beginner. Instead, you may want to check out and Alesis electronic drum set. One of my favorite from this manufacturer is the Nitro Mesh kit. It offers an excellent solution for beginners. For the name, it comes with a mesh pad and a module pre-loaded with 385 sounds. Hence, you are armed with everything you need to kick start your drumming career.
And then there are Yamaha drums. Yamaha is a household name for many things, including motorbikes. But they put special attention to electronic music devices, including high-end drum sets. Anyone who has ever used a Yamaha drum set can bear witness that they are among the most excellent manufactures.
The British Drum Company is another great manufacturer of high-end drum sets. The company only started in 2015, but today it is competing with market giants. Many professional drummers have highly recommended this company.
And I cannot end this list without mention Roland. For the past few years, the company has made a considerable mark in the market. One of my favorites from this company is Roland TD-17KVX. This electronic drum set does not only give you an incredible feeling of mesh drum pedal and some great sounds, but it also features Bluetooth so you can connect your smartphone and speakers without wires.
The choice for the best electronic drum set depends on the needs and preferences of each individual. Hence, you need to define what a perfect drum set means to you. Also, consider your drumming expertise and how much you wish to invest in the item. That way, you can come up with two or three great brands and try out their products.
Best Electronic Drum Set: Buying Advice
When it comes to buying the best electronic drum set, things can be more complicated than you may have thought. There are a number of things you need to keep in mind.
Electronic drum set for beginner
If you are a beginner, it is normal to be confused. You may not know where to begin when it is time to get your own drum set.
The good thing about these sets is that they make your practice so easy. They are quiet; hence you can practice from anywhere and anytime without disturbing anyone. Besides, there are easily available.
No matter what, there are certain things you must keep in mind. As a beginner, it is easy to get excited, and probably make a mistake in the end.
For first-timers, you will need your pads mounted on a rack. As such, look for a drum set that can withstand some vigorous activities. You will be hitting things with a drum stick, after all, hence your gear must take in some punishment.
Also, you will need at least five drums and three cymbals (hi-hat, crash, and ride). You should ensure the set has a bass pad and a hi-hat controller pedal. Few entry-level e-drum kits come with a drum throne, a few sticks, and a set of headphones. In short, a beginner needs a full set, unlike experts who can buy components differently.
Rubber or mesh electronic drum pads
For a beginner, perhaps you are working on a limited budget. As such, you will probably get an e-kit made from rubber. But some entry-level electronic drums come with mesh pads. It is a great improvement because it offers a better feel and response.
The module or “brain” for entry-level may provide a limited selection of sounds. The sounds may cover acoustic drum, electronic sounds, and percussion.
Ensure your kit comes with and auxiliary input. This will help you connect your smartphone or music player; hence you can play with your best music. And the best way to practice is jamming with your pieces from your favorite musician. The kit will probably not be premium, but still, you need to find your feet by practicing without disturbing the whole neighborhood. Drums are very loud, and it will be wrong to play in an apartment residence.
At this point, you are looking for firmer hardware, better sounds, and the ability to edit the sound. You already know how to tune, add dampening, e.t.c, hence a better e-kit is needed. Also, you will be looking for a function to import samples. Last but not least, this is the time to drop the rubber and get mesh pads.
Buying a pro kit
When you have gone through the stages above, going pro becomes a huge step. It is also exciting for every drummer. This is the time you want to show that you are ready for bigger tasks. And perhaps you are looking to play along with your mentor.
For this reason, you have reached a stage where what can be classified as the best drum sets depends on how much you are willing to invest. It is no longer about just getting a drum set, but finding something that can be used for professional music.
Here, you will be investing in top e-drum technology. You will need to edit your sounds to higher perfection. You need to balance the relationship between striking a pad and the music that comes out to be more realistic, authentically responsive to the level of dynamic drumming. The kit you buy will, therefore, be equipped for home or studio use.
Pro e-drum kit modules come with a parameter of sounds that can be altered within seconds, straight from the box. And when you want to include some ‘virtual tape’ to dampen the tom, you can do it right there. Or perhaps you want to change the space you are praying in from a small room to a large hall, and the kit will do it just fine.
However, not that all this great technology and premium hardware is not cheap. You will have to dig deeper into your pockets. But it is all worth because you will be investing in something stable.
And biggest advantage of taking an e-drum kit over an acoustic is that electronic drum sounds wonderful straight of the box. Besides, most retailers offer easy returns in case you are not happy with the item. I would recommend you check out the retailer policy before buying. Nevertheless, it is never possible to purchase without any risks.
The world of electric drums has really advanced. Hence, whether you are buying a beginner, intermediate, or professional gigging, you will never lack something great. Below, I have reviewed the best picks for each level. I have also considered the best brands, including Roland, Yamaha, and Alesis.
Best Cheap Electronic Drum Sets
When it comes to cheap e-drum sets, there are too many options. But you will find that most of them sound like crap, even for a beginner. However, there are a few that are easy on the pocket but excellent in performance. Consider the following.
Roland V-Drums TD-1DMK
Roland has made a name for itself for offering solution drummers of all levels. And the Roland TD-1DMK electronic drum set is just one of its great products. Drummers of all levels can use the set, and it is quietly affordable.
It is a compact kit that packs an 8-inch dual-zone mesh snare, 6-inch mesh tom, choke-able cymbals (ride and crash), a hi-hat controller, and a bass drum. They are mounted on a four-post rack around an H-shaped central station. The rack carries an in-built rubber bass drum trigger pad big enough to hold another pedal. And this why it features among the best drum sets for the price range. Also, you can set the drum set perfectly in a small space.
In addition, the TD-1 module carries and some beautiful backing tracks, practice aids, and great coaching functions. The set does not include bells and whistles in the module, but its simplicity makes it extremely easy to use.
Because it has all the functions needed by a drummer, it is suited for beginner to intermediate drummer levels. I cannot recommend it for go-pros because some crucial functions are missing on this kit.
Nonetheless, it comes 15 kit presets on board, which are varied in style. They provide a functional selection of sounds that cater to different music genres. The mesh heads are two-ply, hence respond quite well to hitting. Also, the model supports a pleasing dynamic range of sounds.
- Great mesh snare and tom pads
- Beautiful rack design
- Module is limited for some
I never thought I would find Tourtech a great brand for e-drums. But I was quite impressed with the Tourtech TT-22M. This is a complete e-kit package that is quite competitive on the market.
It is a five-piece mesh kit that comes with every component to get you on the road, except a drums stool. It comes with an extra bass drum pedal, a drum key, and a pair of drumming sticks. And the four-post rack cab is built in a separate rack box from the pads.
In terms of hardware, this kit can be hard to beat. It could be the best drum set you can get in this price range.
The module carries 26 preset kits with space for up to 15 user kits. There are 458 onboard simples you can assign sounds. It also has 20 MIDI play-along track and function to record. This feature enables drum beater to lay down takes directly from the brain.
Common with many e-kits in this category, the play-along sounds are generally ok. But they are not very inspiring. But you can upgrade the module for better drumming options once you are ready for the next level.
If you are a beginner looking for a first kit or an intermediate in search of something better, I would recommend you try out this kit.
- Include everything to start playing
- Sturdy hardware
- The sounds are too few
- Uninspiring onboard sounds.
Best Mid-Range Electronic Drum Kit Reviews
If you are graduating for beginner level, I would recommend you check out the following drum sets.
When you open the package, you will receive seven pieces and mesh drum heads in total. And as I have mentioned above, mesh heads are the new quality in electronic drums.
Then there is a hardware frame, which is lightweight steel. It comes with easy to use and easy-to-fold features for great storage.And the kit is highly compact. It will not take up much of your space. This makes it a perfect choice for beginners. Also, it comes with cables, a power supply, a drum key, and drumsticks. These are all the accessories you need to start playing.
The Alesis Turbo Mesh Kit module comes bears three excellent learning tools. You get a metronome, a drum coach, and 40 lessons by Melodics. The metronome carries signature and tempos from 30 to 280 BPM. This is pretty impressive in helping you keep up with your timing.
With the drum coach, you get five drum exercises, which is all a beginner needs to build their stamina. It helps you work on your groove and be better at the timing.
Alesis Nitro Mesh Kit
The Alesis Nitro Mesh e-drum is a generally impressive kit. It offers a real punch for its low price tag.
I recommend it as the best cheap mid-level electronic drum. It is not only for the price but for the features as well.
First, it holds a similar position as an acoustic drum set. Hence, it will give you an easy time when you are ready to transition. The kit generally looks great to play and better than other electronic kits you will find on the market.
The kits come with every component to get you playing immediately, except for some hardware like stool and headphones. Generally, it is a great kit.
- Value for money kit
- Come fully equipped
- Features several presets
- It is not the best for pro players
The Yamaha DTX5322K is a lower version and cheaper than the DTX562K below. However, it is still among the best mid-level e-drum sets on the market.
And if you are concerned about your budget, I would suggest you pick this one. After all, Yamaha is one of the market leaders in drum making.
It comes with three-trigger zones on the snare. This means it offers better playability than earlier versions. It also comes with a remote hi-hat, hence a better alternative.
- Very affordable
- Remote hi-hat
- Great built-in sounds
- Many people find it low on the sounds
No one can deny that Yamaha is a leader in electronic drum sets. They create some of the most fantastic drum sets in the world. And the DTX562 is one of the excellent mid-level sets you can find in the market. It is an upgrade of the DTX522K below.
This set is compatible with the Roland TD-11KVS. A big plus is that the Yamaha comes with the stand-along hi-hat. This feature creates a more natural feel when you play.
Also, Yamaha has added more sounds. This is a bonus because the drummer prefers Yamaha’s samples.
The snare comes with three sensor zones. This allows you to play side-kick shots together with regular strokes.
- Great value
- A reputable brand
- Excellent play-along sounds
- The kick-pad is quite disappointing
The Roland TD17KVX carries Roland’s message from the mid-range TD-17 line. This set features new pads designs, sounds from the flagship Roland TD-5o module, and Bluetooth. These features echo your ability to import your own samples. Hence is proves Roland’s tagline ‘Become a better drummer, faster.’
The set is made with high-quality configurations, with adjustable sounds. Bluetooth allows you to import songs without having to connect with wires. Many companies have dabbled Bluetooth with their systems. Hence the TD-17 remains one of the e-drum sets around.
- Great playability
- Inspirational sounds
- Top Bluetooth system
- Shallow presets, compared to some rivals
The Yamaha DTX532K is one of my favorite e-drum sets. I have used the TD-11K before, and that is why I love comparing the two.
From a glance, they may seem similar.
Well, they do. But the DTX532K has two significant upgrades that put it on top.
First, the kit comes with 3-trigger zone snare and cymbals. This feature means they offer better feel and playability. The TD-11K snare and cymbals have dual-trigger zones.
And second, the hi-hats produce a vertical motion that looks and feel far more realistic compared to remote pedals in earlier versions. Also, it comes with a hi-hat stand, but you can use your own.
- Great for all music styles
- Beautiful upgrades
- More presets than earlier versions
- Not inspiration for pro drummers
Best High-End Models
For professional drummers, you may be looking for something extra touchy. The following kits should be a great place to start.
Roland TD-25 KV
Of the many electronic drum sets I have reviewed in the past, the Roland TD-25KV is the most outstanding. And this goes without saying it surely qualifies as a “professional” e-set.
Well, you may compare it to the TD-11K. Only this one is better,
It comes better hardware not found with the TD-11K. It is a significant upgrade in every way.
The snare and the toms use PDX-100 and PD-85BK functionality, which more advanced. The cymbals are upgraded into the CY-12C crash and CY13R ride for a better response. The hi-hat is equipped with ultra-realistic VH-11.
The snare comes with multi-composition sensoring. This feature makes it sound different across the whole drum head, depending on where your stick lands, and your strength.
But the sound is the real reason this kit is truly impressive. You will not be disappointed.
Yamaha DTX 760K
I have always loved Yamaha, not only because of it a big brand but because of its innovativeness as well.
One of the most significant issues drummers have faced with e-drums is the lack of feel and playability. They sound great, but you can always tell a real acoustic drum from mesh heads and rubber cymbals.
However, if you are willing to spend something close to $3500, then you will surely get a more acceptable and enjoyable electronic drum kit with the highest level of quality.
And that is where you will find the Yamaha DTX760K.
The drum proves a noticeable difference in the tension between the snare and the toms, which drummers love. Again, apart from a real hi-hat stand, it has a real snare stand. This significantly reduces the shifting you get with typical snares on racks.
Then comes the ultra-realistic hi-hat sensors. They can monitor the foot pressure and automatically adjust.
The impressive KB-100 kick pad is out of this world. Just a single glance, and you will agree, is the most realistic kick pad you may have seen so far. And it can even fit a double bass pedal.
Last but not least is the optional DTX760HWK hardware. This feature greatly eliminated the standard electronic drum rack. It is more like the type of hardware used in acoustic kits.
Roland is no joke when it comes to building high-end drums sets. And the Roland TD-30KV is, without a doubt, one of the best e-drum kits on in the world.
There are newer models since its release, but none of them can compare to the overall performance of this kit. It has all the best features mentioned in kits above, except it uses NOT drum pads.
The TD-39KV is big enough to offer the largest playing surfaced. Again, it has a shell and tensionable head to bring out the feel and look of acoustic drums.
Above all, the TD-30 sound module outputs are like nothing you have ever heard. It comes with separate analog output for each of the drum and cymbal. Hence, it is perfect for studio recording as you can separate each drum on a different track, just like real microphones in an acoustic drum kit.
Roland is dedicated to offering the best innovation and technology for drummers. And they recently decided to take things even higher with the introduction of the Roland TD-50KV.
Compared to the TD-30KV above, there are a few impressive upgrades that make this model a wonderful choice. The major ones include:
- A larger 18-inch ride. Its weight and balance are closer to the real thing.
- The snare is now 14-inch, just like a standard acoustic. And it features a 3-ply mesh head that produces far better rebound.
- A mute sensor for easy cross-stick playing
But the introduction of digital triggering on both the ride and snare is perhaps the largest development. There is no other drum set in the industry with this technology. Until now, e-drums have depended on the analog trigger. The digital option can send more data to the sound module, hence better response.
The kick drum still resembles the KD-140 use in the previous version, but there is a new upgrade called the KD-A22. You can use this to change your own real 22-inch kick drum shell to be trigger compatible. It makes everything look and feel like a real drum set.
The rear of the module comes with two balanced XLR outputs, which can be quite useful in live performance. And for the studio, there is a simple USB output that lets you multi-track record the whole kit on the DAW.
And you still have the eight analog outputs from the TD-30. With a single USB cable, you are good to go.
Electronic Drum Pad
This is one of the greatest things I love about the Roland HandSonic HPD20. It comes with a wide variety of sounds for any type of drummer.
There are up to 850 sounds, all from different percussion instruments. Do you want traditional patterns? You have got it. Or perhaps you prefer more specific options like conga and bongo, well you have it all here.Then there is a wide range of electronic beats and mixes. These are perfect for DJs and sound engineers.
And you will fall love its connectivity. The option in including a USB flash drive means you can upload your WAV files. It has space to accommodate more than 500 files. Hence, you can customize it any way you want.
The innovation of roll up drum kit is among the recent creation. The world of musical instruments has begun investing more in technology that before. And giant like Yamaha, Roland, and Alesis, among others, are not leaving anything to chance.
Roll-up drums sound confusing, right? From its name, one may not help but wonder how a drum can be rolled up? Is it even possible?
Well, thanks to technology, we have roll-up drums. And in this article, I am going to introduce you to these devices and offer a review of some of the best in the markets.
And the best part is, they come with every part of a drum set. The rubber is the playing surface. This is where you will get drum pads and the cymbal pads – including the snare and hi-hats.
Modern drum module come with pretty amazing sound libraries. Besides, they also feature the ability for other connections like SD cards, USB, and similar slots, enabling you to import customized sounds. These sounds offer endless possibilities in terms of performance. You can mix them up during a live performance and make a wonderful presentation.
And for the case of recording, you don’t need to have too many drum sets with different sounds. A single module with different sets can easily become your home studio recorder. Then there is their amazing quality and flexibility, whereby they include numerous trigger inputs. It makes this module wonderful in performances.
During practice, such versatility means you can expand your music expression to unimaginable heights. This should help you improve your general playing experience.
Right off the box, the Strike will strike you. It is way better in looks than the previous version. Alesis, since they introduced the SR-16 in 1990, has continued to impress fans with better tech. The Strike series released a few years ago is their latest addition. The rolling out the Strike Multipad introduced a heavy landing sampler that is now on the lips of everyone.
Alesis Strike Multipad Introduces a new feature called the A+B sample function. You can, therefore, have tow samples linked to a single pad. You can have them play together, or alternatively.This is a concept that can be used inside a DAW with a PC. But I like using them as a standalone.
The looping function on the Strike is quite amazing. You don’t only loop samples inside the unit, but the sounds from audio inputs too. Alesis has really stepped up their game in this one. Professional drummers will really love this. And I think the Alesis Strike Multipad price is justified.
Alesis has become a highly reputable brand in the electronic drums and percussion industry. And one of the things that amuse me is how the company keeps some things simple.Even though technological progress has taken over the world of music, Alesis makes products geared towards the user. And the Alesis SR16 is one such item.
I am quite amused that the Alesis SR16 is still in production. Even more, its design has remained the same all these years. On the surface, it is the same machine that was produced three decades ago. Such a vintage look will never miss impressing. The features it carries have remained relevant until today. This is perhaps why Alesis hasn’t thought of making any adjustments.
Its size has remained the same too. It is compact in dimensions. Hence, it is extremely portable, great for those who move around a lot.
What is the best electronic drum kit for beginners?
As a beginner in the drumming industry, one of the biggest challenges you are going to face is choosing the right drum kit. Unfortunately, it is not easy because the market is full of different products.
However, there are several features that beginners should look out for. Consider the following:
Obviously, no one wants drums that sound like crap. Electronic drums come with several play-along sounds too. Hence, as much as you will be playing your own music, you will need as few play-along tracks.
Consider something that comes with a few of your favorite songs. This will make it easy for you to play as you will be enjoying.
And although you will be limited to beginner’s price range, good sounds are better than more sounds.
Plenty of sounds
If you are a drummer that enjoys more flexibility in your kits, go for more sounds. But this is a factor that depends on personal needs.
Drum pads with a natural feel
Electric drum pads on this price range are not going to feel or sound like real toms, snare, and bass drum. But still, you need something that feels good when you play. They will inspire you to do better. Also, it will be easier to transition.
Buy a drum kit that is compact and portable. An acoustic drum is heavy and difficult to transport. But you can walk around easily with your e-drum set.
A quiet drum
You will need a lot of practice time to become a good drummer. Unfortunately, the acoustic drum is naturally loud. And that can be a bad thing, especially if you live in an apartment.
The good news is, all electronic drum sets are quiet to some extent. This are their selling points. So, go for one that is as quiet as possible.
Are electronic drum sets any good?
Electronic drum sets have come a really long way. Today, there are different brands; all focused on offering the best appearance and feel in these drums.
Technology has enabled manufacturers to add better improvements on each version that comes out. For this reason, electronic drums are beginning to sound more like real acoustic drums sets.
Consider the drums sets I have reviewed above under “professional drums.” They are the most expensive and most advanced e-drums on the market.
This means the features and functionality you get in an electronic drum depends on how much you are willing to spend.
Overall, electronic drums sets are quite good because they serve their purpose. There is an option for every level of drummers.
Pros of electronic drum sets:
- Sound control. Volume is the biggest concern that affects an aspiring drummer. The noise does not go very well with other people around. But for e-drum sets, you can connect headphones so that only you hear the sound.
- Mix-in music and play along. A beginner can play along their favorite music to get the feeling of real play. It is fun and helps them grow. Though headphones don’t provide the best balance of drums and music, there are mix-in functions on some modules that enable drummers to hear a part of the music and then play along.
- Onboard metronome. It can be very difficult to play along with a metronome when using acoustic drums because of the volume. Metronomes help in developing and timekeeping. And they are easy to use with e-drum sets. This is because they come with flashing lights a drummer can observe and follow.
- Many drum sets and play-along songs. You can play as many songs as you want. And you can change the drum sets to sound as you wish for different music genres.
- Electronic drums have really advanced, but they still don’t feel and sound good like acoustic sets. This can be tough for beginners when they are trying transitioning. But more advanced e-sets are easier to use as they feel closer to acoustic ones.
- Difficult in positioning. Most pads and cymbals of electronic drums are undersized. This can be a problem when trying to position.
- Portability. Electronic drums require throwing a rack, wiring, and monitoring speaker systems. This can be hard if you are moving around a lot or in places without a good power source.
- Cost. You may need to spend more than $3500 to get a quality electronic drum set that sounds close to an acoustic one.
Is an electronic drum set good for beginners?
Beginners face many challenges when trying to practice drums. One of the major challenges is that they need more space and time to practice.
This may not be easy if you are living in an apartment. The acoustic noise drums produce does not go very well with many people.
In that case, the best choice would be using electronic drum sets. They are quieter and can take up a small space in your room. Some are even table-top and don’t take up any space.
Also, electronic drum sets come with play-along sounds, which can be very good for practice. If a drummer gets some from their favorite music, it can inspire them to become better.
However, relying on electronic drum sets can be bad during the transition. Many of e-drums in the beginner price range don’t look or sound like acoustic drums.
I would advise a beginner to try working with acoustic drums along with practicing using e-drums. There are several techniques for muting acoustic drums that work pretty well. For instance, there are mutters which are placed on drum heads to make them sound softer.
But if you are comfortable with electronic ones, consider investing in something more realistic. There are some toys for beginners that will not just help you.
There is no denying that technology has become the center for development in the drumming industry.
This is true, especially when talking about drum brands.
Whether you are a beginner, mid-level, or professional drummer, there is now an electronic drum to meet your needs. And the best part is, these drums are now made to look and sound more like acoustic drums sets. As such, they will give you a realistic feeling, enabling you to become a better drummer. You just need to identify the best drum set. And I hope this article has been helpful.