Best Beginner Drum Set Review – Top Rated Models in 2018 with Buying Guide
Finding the best beginner drum set might prove to be challenging and time-consuming given the great variety of beginner drum kits for sale. To make it easier to choose the right product, we have examined the value and quality offered by some of the most appreciated products in this line and concluded that the Gammon 5-Piece is the first option to consider. The set includes anything you need to start playing and the quality of the materials used ensure extended life and durability. Plus, the kit can be easily assembled. In case this product is sold out, you might want to consider the Mendini Junior set.
Highly Recommended Choices – Reviews & Comparison
In order to help you find the best drum set for beginners, we have examined some of the critically acclaimed products on the market and concluded that the models showcased below are worth considering. Check our beginner drum sets reviews to make sure you order the right product.
Gammon 5-Piece B003IQTE1Y
What you get with the starter drum kit is a complete set that includes a 16″ bass drum, a snare drum, two Tom drums, a stool, a bass drum pedal, a drum key, sticks, and quality and durable cymbals. Once you get it, you don’t have to buy anything else. Just assemble it and start playing.
The quality of the materials used ensures durability whereas the high-gloss finish and chrome rims add a touch of stylishness to the set. The variety of the tools and instruments included makes it a perfect kit for a young drummer.
Mendini Junior B004Z8OUCW
The set includes a 16″ x 11″ bass drum featuring 6 lugs per side, a 10″ x 6″ hanging Tom with 5 lugs per side, a 10″ x 5″ snare as well as a 9.5″ cymbal that comes with a bass mounted holder. Besides these pieces, the buyer will also get a bass drum pedal and a round padded throne that can be adjusted.
A pair of wooden drum sticks is also included. The kit is easy to set up as it comes with instructions. It is recommended for 2.5 to 5 feet tall children, therefore it would make a great gift for a kid interested in playing drums.
Pearl RS525SCC31 B00NJVS5H2
The kit is available in four durable wrapped finishes and setups so you can choose the one that best suits your needs. Nine ply 7mm Poplar shells and 1.2mm triple-flanged hoops have been used to build the drums and to deliver a powerful tone.
The package includes 14″ hybrid hi-hats, maple drumsticks, and a 16″ crash-ride cymbal. The user also gets a professional stick bag. The chain-drive bass drum pedal and locking stands add to the professional design of the set. Plus, the drum throne and stands are dual-reinforced and come with double-braced legs.
Gammon Metallic B002Z5ZOGS
What you get with this set is a kit including the 5 drums you need to get started, that is one bass drum, one snare drum, one floor tom and two mounted toms. The drums are accompanied by all the other instruments and items you need to get started immediately including stands, a stool, sticks, cymbals, hardware, a drum key, and pedals.
The drums are easy to set up as the package comes with a drum assembly DVD. The high-gloss metallic blue finish enhances the professional design. The product is available in two colors, blue and back. Given its dimensions (30 x 24 x 23 inches), it is ideal for adults.
Mendini MJDS-5-BL B004Z8ORXO
The set is ideal for young drummers interested in a realistic experience yet too small for a complete adult drum set. The all-in-one drum kit comes with a bass drum, two Tom drums, a matching snare drum, and a floor Tom.
The shopper also gets a 10″ crash cymbal with bass drum mounted stand as well as an 8″ Hi-Hat with chain driven cymbal and stand. A pair of wooden sticks is also included. The height of the round padded drum throne can be adjusted. Plus, the drums are easy to set up.
Gammon Full Size B002RGPQJ0
The great thing about this set is that it comes with everything you need to start playing the moment you get it. It’s true that assembly is required but thanks to the free drum instruction DVD, the set can be installed in no time.
The box you get comes with 5 drums including the bass drum, snare drum, floor tom and two mounted toms. A pair of drums sticks, the drummer’s key, cymbals, stands, stool heads, a pedal, and throne are also part of the kit. Given the leading position of the company in the drum industry, the set is worth considering.
GP Percussion Red B000PH03Z0
With the help of the items included in the kit, the young drummers will get to develop the hand and feet coordination drumming requires. The set comes with anything the junior drummer needs to start playing: drums, stands, cymbals, drum key, drumsticks, throne, pedal, and more.
The box also includes the junior throne where your kid can sit comfortably and beat to his most loved tunes. The drummer’s fun is further boosted by the hi-hat cymbal the player can use to nurture his talents. The red metallic finish adds a professional and cool touch to the set.
Alesis CompactKit B016KNIJHG
Thanks to the interactive game and coach modes, the drummer can learn the basics in a fun and easy way. The four pads included deliver 80 percussion and effect sounds and the user can adjust the tempo in order to make drumming as challenging as desired.
The set can be used both at home and on the road as it can be plugged into a wall outlet or powered by six C batteries. The headphone output jack and built-in speakers will allow the drummer to enjoy private practice whenever needed. The package also includes a pair of drumsticks.
Mendini MJDS-1-BL B00FS13BUC
Considering its dimensions, the set not only makes it comfortable for a young drummer to play but it also takes little space. The box includes a 13″ x 8″ bass drum, a 10″ x 4″ mounted snare, 8″ cymbal with cymbal arm, and 8″ x 6″ mounted tom.
The buyer also gets a pair of wooden drumsticks, a bass drum pedal, and a round padded throne that can be adjusted. The cymbal and drum are mounted off the bass drum in order to make it easier for the user to set up the kit. Assembly is required but thanks to the instructions the product comes with, it takes little time and involves simple steps.
RockJam RJ103-MB B01C5G2JOG
This starter kit includes three types of drums to play. The low tone of the bass drum is ideal for playing with the foot pedal the set comes with. Extra bang is ensured by the hanging tom-tom drum. Last but not least is the snare drum that can be used as a standalone instrument.
The quality metals and plastic used will help the drummer enjoy a professional sound whereas the crash cymbals are great for adding different variations. The box also includes a comfortable cushioned chair and durable yet lightweight drumsticks. The set requires assembly but it includes clear instructions.
Pyle Electronic B01H4VG35I
Its great variety of built-in songs, sounds, and drum kits will help the player explore the various nuances of drumming and enjoy a realistic sound. Moreover, the product enables users to create their own music as the kit can be connected to a computer to record, edit and save drum tunes.
The built-in speakers and headphone output jack make private practice possible when traveling. Moreover, the travel-friendly design is further supported by the possibility to power the kit with six C batteries. There are various tempo, beat, and rhythm adjustments and settings the drummer can go for. Drumsticks and foot pedal controllers are also included.
Spectrum AIL 602 B003XJ6GC6
Thanks to the height adjustable drum stand, the player can practice while standing or sitting. It is also double adjustable and double braced with non-skid rubber feet for stability. The kit includes a pair of drums sticks, AC adaptor as well as bonus jam tracks.
The instructional video it comes with helps the players develop their skills. The two foot pedals further help the drummer create new sounds. The Spectrum drum features a controller module with LED program display as well as several controls for ease of use such as demo, record, and tempo controls.
Yearly Guide & Report
If you want to stop fantasizing about playing the drums and actually start playing them yet you have no clue where to start with your best beginner drum kit purchase, you’re in the right place. You can check out our guide to learn what features count the most when it comes to drum sets.
Since a drum kit includes several pieces for different purposes, it might get a bit overwhelming to pick the best beginner drum set for adults or juniors. Because thorough research involves lots of reading, browsing, and information assimilation, we’ve compiled a list of the main factors to consider before you make a purchase.
Five-piece drum kits
Just like when you’re looking for a beginner electric guitar, a digital piano to practice your skills, or ukulele for beginners and advanced players, you need to know more about the most important features to look for. In our case, the number of pieces included in the kit is what counts a lot.
Drum kits can include from 2 to 7 pieces and, in some cases, even more. The main pieces you will enjoy with any set are the kick and snare drums. What you get besides these two are extra pieces that include cymbals and hi-hats. The best option for a beginner is a five-piece drum kit as it will give you lots of ways to practice and play with.
Therefore, you might want to look for a drum set that comes with a kick drum (also known as bass drum), a snare drum, two rack toms, and a floor tom. Acoustic five-piece drum kits usually don’t come with cymbals, so you will have to buy them separately. In order to master the basics and try various styles, you will need one hi-hat cymbal, one ride cymbal, and one or more crash cymbals.
Shell size and floor space
When shopping your next musical instrument, you need to pay attention to its size and how much space it takes. Lightweight travel guitars need to be of a medium size in order to make it easy and comfortable for you to take your instrument with you. Well, drum sets come in various sizes, too. If you are a newbie, though, you need to concern yourself with two options.
You can opt for the standardly sized kits that come with larger shells and are appropriate for heavier rock ‘n’ roll styles or for the fusion sized kits that include smaller pieces and do a better job when playing lighter styles.
Consider the size of the set you buy not only for the sound you will get since dimensions influence it but also for the space you have at disposal. A full-sized drum kit requires quite some space and then some pieces like the kick/bass drum can move when practicing. If your home is not very generous, you might want to opt for an electronic kit because it has a smaller footprint and requires less room.
The woods used count a lot when it comes to the quality of the sound you enjoy and your overall experience. Just like in the case of a cello or a brand new banjo, the woods your drums are made of will affect your music negatively or positively. Tone, abundance, and workability are the three factors that determine the quality of the drum shell wood.
The best woods to help you get a quality sound are the popular and highly-versatile maple, birch for accentuated highs and lows, and mahogany for warm tones. These woods are usually found in medium to high-priced kits. Cheaper drums typically use falkata, poplar, and basswood.
High-end custom shell packs can be made from rare woods such as cherry, beech, oak, walnut, ash, and bubinga but usually advanced players go for such models. The market also offers synthetic shells that are made of carbon fiber, acrylic, and fiberglass. You can also find snare shells made of bronze, steel, copper or aluminum.
Cymbals and hardware upgrades
Cymbals have a significant impact on the sound you get. They are as important as the drums themselves. Usually, the cymbals included in the beginner sets aren’t always that good as the ones you can buy separately yet, since this is your first drum set and you will use it to learn the basics of drumming, you can start with the ones included in your kit.
Just make sure your set comes with both crash and ride cymbals. Crash cymbals are mounted above the drums being the loudest in the kit whereas the ride cymbals are placed near the floor tom and create a gentler sound. Junior drum sets come with smaller cymbals, a size that affects their sonic quality.
Playability is also affected by the other pieces a kit includes, that are: the drum throne, bass drum pedal, hi-hat stand, drum stick, racks, and stands. Again, the ones complete beginner sets come with are of a lower quality. If you want to improve your experience you can buy them separately but for the moment, it might be better not to spend too much. Or at least, until you know where your drumming goes.
Electronic drum kits
If you find all this a bit too complicated and you’d like to take the easier way, you might want to consider an electronic drum kit. You will get a complete set out of the box and you won’t have to spend money on extra pieces once your experience in drumming advances.
With such a kit, you can enjoy a great richness of sounds because the modules on electronic drums feature a variety of drum kits that cover birch/maple/metal kits and even more. This means a huge versatility and the possibility to change musical genres by simply hitting a button.
Moreover, an electronic drum kit takes less space and is travel-friendly. Many models can be powered by C batteries so you can take the set with you even when on the road. If you enjoyed this post, you might want to check some of our other posts such as the ones on metronome for drummers or quality music stands.
Frequently asked questions about drums for beginners
How much is a beginner drum set?
The price of a beginner drum kit can vary significantly depending on the number of pieces included, the quality of the materials used, the size, and the brand. You can find beginner drum sets that cost no more than a couple hundred bucks. Professional kits, though, can reach even a few thousands.
A complete junior drum kit starts at $300 or so. Such sets usually include cymbals, stands, and the necessary hardware. The throne might not be included in the box but you can get it separately even for $30. Such sets are the ones a beginner usually goes for since they are good for learning the basics.
How to choose a beginner drum set?
In order to make sure you get the right beginner drum set for your needs, you need to ask yourself a few questions. Start by choosing between an acoustic drum set and an electric kit. The latter is better for beginners, more versatile, and requires little space.
Think of your budget and how much you are willing to spend. Plus, choose your set depending on the musical genre or sound you are interested in. Try the drum set out and if you’re still unsure, read reviews from both professionals and beginners.
How to learn to play the drums?
Although you can learn the basics in little time, mastering the drums can take years of practice. Start learning by getting familiar with the drums, cymbals, and pieces included in your kit. Learn how to hold the drumsticks and go for the grip that feels most comfortable (matched or traditional).
Adopt the right posture by sitting up straight and keeping your elbows in. You can start playing the drums with your hands. Learn rhythm by starting with quarter and eighth notes. Use a metronome to make it easier and if the tutorials you find online don’t help much, go for drum lessons with a professional.
What are good beginner drum sticks?
If you are a novice when it comes to drums, you might want to consider a 5A hickory pair of sticks. This model is the most commonly recommended for beginners because their size is decent, their weight medium and their thickness average.
These sticks are not only comfortable to use but they are also ideal for many musical styles. They are made of hickory, hence the name. Although variations occur across the 5A drumsticks available on the market, any model you choose should help you with your beginner practice.
Do self-taught drummers play better?
There is much debate about whether self-taught drummers play better than the ones attending drum classes. The mechanism involved in both types of learning is basically the same. You listen, watch, and play. So, we could say that all drummers teach themselves how to play.
Even a so-called self-taught drummer watches tutorials or other people playing, listens and then plays himself. The only difference between drummers who take classes and those who don’t is that the first have more information but that doesn’t necessarily translate into a better performance. Some say that it is tougher to grow as a drummer when you have little knowledge of music, though.