Best Beginner Drum Set in 2020

Best Beginner Drum Set

If you want to be a drummer, most likely you know who rocker Lars Ulrich is. If you don’t, well he’s the drummer of the mega rock band called Metallica.

However, before we move on, I must say shame on you for not knowing him. Most of us were inspired by Mr. Ulrich himself to get into drumming. The way he went nuts with those drumsticks was just phenomenal.

The other rocker would be the great, Vinnie Paul. drummer of Pantera. Vinnie is probably one of the greatest drummers in the history of modern drumming (Don’t forget Pantera’s insane guitar player Dimebag Darrell).

So if you want to join this elite league or even surpass them, it’s time to make a decision and get started. There are also electric drums and you will find them here as well. Let’s start with the regular ones first.

Here are our picks of the best beginner drum sets for (adults and kids alike) in 2019. I also have a drum throne section to go along with your drums set.

One thing I would like to clear up is drum set’s don’t include 808s used in trap music. Don’t feel embarrassed if you didn’t know this as this site is for beginners just like you.

You can easily make 808s through your DAW (Music software) or Synthesizers. If you live in an apartment, maybe an electric drum set might be a better choice which we talk about later as well.

Anyways, one thing is for sure . . . You will definitely find each review quite informative.

By The Way . . .
You might see the phrase “Shell Pack” in some of the descriptions below. Shell packs include the absolute basics like Toms and the Bass drum. No accessories or anything else.

Why?

Most drummers prefer to have their own personal preferences when it comes to drum set accessories like pedals, snare drums, cymbals, drum sticks etc. So if you see ‘Shell Pack’, it means you are only getting the the bass drum and the toms (Unless otherwise specified).


Gammon 5 Piece Drum Set – (Adults)

Although it’s designed for adults, this is a good beginner drum set for the taller young ones as well. Gammon specializes in creating affordable yet quality percussion products.

This is a full size drum set that comes with every single thing you need. Including drumsticks and a throne aka drum stool.

So if you got a few hundred bucks on you, check out this fun quality drum set. Excellent choice for beginners of all ages. If you ever feel like recording what you play, just connect it with some microphones and a multitrack recorder.


Best Choice Products Drum Set

A somewhat new company in the adult drum set market, Best Choice Products have quickly established itself as one of the top contenders in the business. A great example of that is the BCP 5 piece complete adult drum set.

When I say complete, I’m talking about the stool, cymbals (2), drumsticks and a pedal for the bass drum as well. If you are just looking to get your feet wet as a new drummer, this drum set is for you.

Once you get fairly good, then upgrade to a brand like Pearl or something. Great drum set for beginners though. A popular choice for adults and teens between 12 – 15 alike.


Ludwig Drum Set – Accent Combo 5 Piece

Another great choice for a 5 piece drum set by Ludwig (Accent Series). Once you’re done assembling it, there will be no turning back. These drums look good and sound great. Especially the Ludwig standard snare drum.

Just like the Best Choice Products drum set above, this one comes with the same “fixings” if I may. If I had to pick one for myself, it would be this Ludwig drum kit but that’s cause I love the black color on it.

Most people prefer the cymbals on the BCP’s but as a beginner, you shouldn’t have any issues.

Great choice for anyone looking for a full entry-level Ludwig drum set.


Ludwig 4 Piece Drum Set

This is a 4 piece drum set by Ludwig. You might be wondering which is better, a 4 piece or 5 piece? To be honest, it depends on how much space you have. If you goal however, is to learn how to play drums even a 3 piece would be ideal but if you have more space, then feel free to go with the 4 or 5 piece.

This epic “Pocket kit” comes with a bass drum, tom, floor tom, snare drum and a foot pedal. Plus a throne (Drum stool) is also included. This Ludwig LC17 is designed to be portable so you can take this drum set with you pretty much anywhere.

If you are an entry level drummer, hopefully you won’t be banging away on this drum set in a public place anytime soon. Don’t want you to get hurt or anything as this set produces quite a loud noise. Good for you, not so much for the neighbours (Who cares right – Ha!).


Pearl Drum Set – EXX725S/C

Here we go! My favorite and most likely your favorite drum set brand, the one and only Pearl. This Pearl 5 piece drum set model EXX725S/C is my favorite. Think if this brand as the Yamaha or Fender for guitars. A little pricey then the others but definitely one of the best here.

If you can spend a few, this is a great beginner drum set. The quality is unmatched and this model is endorsed by students and drum instructors alike. Unlike the other drum sets that all come in one giant box, this one comes in 3. Pearl is always top notch when it comes to shipping their products. The only downside is it doesn’t come with cymbals, throne (Drum stool) or drumsticks.

That said, you should be fine with using any entry level cymbals. Brand name wise I’m totally down with this one but as far as the overall package goes (Especially for the budget conscious), there are other better choices on this list.

These are also more intermediate than entry level.

Anyways, enjoy the lifetime warranty on these too. A standard feature on Pearl drum sets. Best for rock and metal music.


Sonar 4 Piece Drum Shell Pack

The Sonar 4 piece drum set comes in a funky turquoise color.

You get the bass drum with mount, Two toms and one snare. Great set but not all in one package like a few others here.

Although it’s somewhat smaller in size, it’s great on the sound.

If you have decent size den, just put this Sonar drum set in there and practice away.

A great upside is this is one of the fastest drum set to assemble.


Gammon Percussion 5 Piece Drum Set

A total gem of a package by Gammon, this one includes everything.

A total 5 piece drum kit which comes with adequate warranty on most parts. The head on these drum sets seem to get replaced often so if that’s not a big deal to you, this might be your pick.

If you think about it, for the price of what you are getting here, it might not be that bad of an idea.

Not necessarily the best adult drum set but your kids will be satisfied for sure.


Pearl 5 Piece Drum Set

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If you like sounding good while practicing or playing, then don’t worry about it as Pearl is one of the best (If not the best).

However, if you like to look good too, than the Pearl EXX725S/C should be something worth checking out. After all it comes in 5 various styles.

This Pearl drum set is pretty much a shell pack with hardware but you do need to purchase the throne, the cymbals and the drumsticks as well.

Not just for beginners as this specific model is a popular choice for intermediates as well.


Pearl Clear Drum Set (5 Piece)

Get your drumsticks ready for this bad boy. This a Pearl drum set that is used by the pros. Just the color choices should blow you away. Especially my personal favorite which is ‘see through’.

This is definitely the most gorgeous clear drum set. Keeping the Pearl tradition of quality alive, this drum set is shipped in 5 pieces all together.

Plus if you have any issues, just contact Pearl and their mostly phenomenal customer service will help you out.

If you value quality and don’t mind spending for it, this is shell pack (Bass drums and the toms) for you.


Pearl 5 Piece Lacquer Drum Set

No products found.

Part of the Pearl export series, you are looking at one of the most popular Pearl beginner drum sets ever produced.

This 5 piece Pearl shell pack is also the most beloved on our list.

It includes all the parts and all you have to do is just set it up, assemble it and then off you go.

That means you also get a drum pedal (P930 Demonator Pedal), snare and all the bells and whistles.

A throne is the only thing you need to provide though.


Best Drum Set Brands For Beginners

When you think of a proper 3 to 5 piece drum set, brands like Pearl or Ludwig come to mind. However, due to popular demand, a lot of other brands have stepped in and have created some quality drum sets of their own.

Here we have a look at the best drum set brands for beginners. We’ll start off with the most budget friendly ones and work our way up.

Gammon Percussion

Gammon Percussion Logo

All these guys do is make drum sets. That’s it. At least that’s 90 percent of what they do.

They do not sell to the public either but only through their distributors. Gammon specializes in making drum set for kids, beginners, adults and more. In fact the youth really enjoys their drum sets and Gammon just happens to be one of the few companies that actually make a 7 piece drum set.

In addition, Gammon also makes other related percussion products like congo drums and bongo sets as well. In a short period of time, Gammon has quickly established themselves as one of the good drum set brands out there especially with their full size and junior drum sets.

We’ve also featured a few of their products here as well. If you’re looking for your first brand new drum set, Gammon should be looked at as a top brand in the drum set game that is definitely worth checking out.

Gammon Percussion on Amazon


Best Choice Products

BCP Products

Don’t let the simple name fool you, these guys have been in the retail industry for over 15 years (Also known as Sky Billiards). Not sure when they started selling their drum sets but BCP is now a well respected brand in the consumer drum set industry.

They source their drum sets from other manufacturers but quality is definitely BCP’s main priority. As it reflects in their percussion productions.

That’s why they’ve are now considered one of the best drum set brands especially for beginners. Kids and adults alike.

Best Choice Drums and Percussion Products on Amazon


Sonar Drums

Sonar Drum Sets

Okay now we’re about to learn about the big boys and Sonar drums is one of them. A German brand so you expect it to be a quality brand and to be honest, they don’t disappoint at all. Established in 1875, the company made it’s first mass produced percussion instrument in 1890.

Which was a Glockenspiel. Soon they followed up with a drum pedal and soon the official logo was drawn out. In around 1925, they had over 100 employees and became one of the largest businesses of their own kind. In 1950, their first drum kit was introduced and they haven’t looked backed since. Sorry for the history lesson but

Needless to say, Sonar is still going strong as a handmade drum kit manufacturer and is well respected by it’s competitors and the artists who love banging away on them.


Ludwig Drums

Ludwig Drum Set

Every genre has two companies that are in a league of their own. Pepsi vs Coca Cola in the beverage industry, Mercedes vs BMW in cars and when it comes to the drum and percussion world, it’s Ludwig and Pearl.

Established in 1909, Ludwig drums have been used by countless artists like Charlie Adams (Yanni’s drummer), Ben Barter (Lorde’s drummer), Lemar Carter (Demi Lovato) and the list goes on.

Ludwig has been making quality percussion drum sets for ages and if you are at an intermediate level or looking to upgrade your current starter drum kit, Ludwig should be the next stop. They do have some excellent 4 piece drum sets which might be a great pick for beginners too.

Ludwig Drums On Amazon


Pearl

Pearl Drums Company Logo

Okay I might be totally bias here but I think Pearl makes the best drum sets in the world. All my favorite artists use it so there . . . that’s my totally bias review.

However, I should maintain my professionalism here and most likely, I think you agree as well. Maybe Pearl might not be the best drum set brand for a few of you out there but one thing we can all agree on is they sure are the most popular ones.

That should say something about their products right? Especially their Roadshow models that enables even beginners to buy a real Pearl drum set.

Pearl Drum Sets on Amazon


Anatomy of a Drum Set and Drum Parts

Ever wondered what are the parts or a drum set? Where here you’ll learn exactly what each piece is.

Anatomy of a Drum Set

Ride Cymbal:

Common on a drum set. You know the ‘riser’ effect you hear on a drum roll? That’s done on a cymbal.

Floor Tom:

Usually placed on the right side of the drummer, also an essential part of a full size drum set.

Rack Toms:

Placed on the top of the bass drum. These are always part of a drum set along with the bass drum. Especially if you get a 3 piece drum set. They come in pairs.

Bass Drum:

Also known as the kick drum because it produces the ‘kick’ sound. Once you hit it using a foot pedal, it also produces a bass or in music production terms, the low end.

Crash Cymbal:

Using the ‘drum roll’ example I used earlier, the very last ‘splash’ or ‘crash’ noise that is created at the end of the drum roll is created by a crash cymbal. Hence the name ‘crash’.

Hi Hat Cymbal:

Another standard part of a full drum set, the hi hats are the ones that create the ‘hissing’ sound. Used in almost all drum patterns. Especially in EDM or Urban music.

Snare Drum:

Remember when Eminem said “I need some snare in my headphones”, this is the instrument that he was referring to. In a classic drum pattern, the snares always come after a kick or two.

Now let’s have a look at the “electronic” version of a drum set.


Who Invented The First Drum Set?

Although all kinds of drums have been used in various cultures, the modern drum set as we know today was actually invented during the middle ages in Europe. Archaeologists have found not just drums closer to the formation we use today (Snare, Tom, Floor Toms, etc) but also drums sticks that went along with them. Most experts do like to argue about drumsticks being introduced a lot later but there is no real evidence back up this claim.


How Much Is A Drum Set?

A new beginner drum set can cost anywhere between a couple hundred dollars to being in the thousands. Of course if you’re in another country like Canada, India, Philippines, Malaysia or Singapore, the prices may vary.

Overall, it all depends on the brand, the total hardware and the accessories that drum kit comes with. These days, a decent drum set cost can be between $200 to $800. This price range includes professional drum sets too.

So if you’re looking for a high quality drum set, there are plenty of options today. Obviously a used drum set would be cheaper but if it breaks down, you might pay up ending more than before due to a lack of warranty.

You can rent one as well but then you’ll be paying per use and if you really want to improve as a drummer, it’s best to have the proper (At least a starter drum set) drum kit at home so you can practice as much as possible.

Especially if you’re taking drum lessons on the side.


Are Drum Sets Tuned?

You only tune instruments that create a ‘pitch’ like the strings of a guitar or a ukulele. Drums just create ‘blobs’ of sound so they don’t necessarily need to be tuned. The drums might need some adjustments from time to time but they don’t necessarily need to be tuned.


What is a Drum Set Throne?

A drum set throne is just another word for a drum stool. Also known as a drummer’s chair. Depending on the brand, a drum throne can come fully assembled or partially.


How To Setup A Drum Set?

It all starts with your throne or chair or whatever you’re going to sit on. Once you have that sorted you place your kick drum in front of you and basically start adding the remaining pieces. It’s the most basic way of assembling your drum set.

For more details, check out this great video on how to setup a drum kit.


How To Mic A Drum Set

Well it all starts with a kick drum. Here you will need two  microphones. A ribbon mic and a dynamic mic. One is placed at a 45 degree angle and one right in the front of the bass drum (Dead center).

The 45 degree angle ribbon mic is placed to capture the presence and brightness and the dynamic mic on the side is there to capture the ‘kick’ or top end of the sound that is created. The ‘tick’ so to speak.

For the snare, you need to place one mic on Top of the snare and a second one right under. Just make sure you flip the polarity (From the input control of these mics) so the phase between the top mic and bottom mic is in sync.

On the hihat you just need one mic. Usually a dynamic or ribbon mic does the job fairly nicely. Just make sure you point it away from the rest of the drum parts so it only picks up the hihats (No bleeding in of other sounds).

For the toms you also need a single microphone. In addition, you need two more mics about 3ft from the top where your drum set is placed.

You also need to do some EQing after to make sure your setup is done right. So now when you hear drums on any of your favorite songs, know that a lot of work went in just so you can enjoy it properly.


How To Clean A Drum Set

First you need to know the three main parts of a drum set that actually require cleaning.

  • The skin (Usually on top of all the drums).
  • The shell – What holds the skin together.
  • Chrome or metal parts: That binds the entire drum together.

To clean the skin, you simply need some mild soap. Windex is a great example and available for most.

For the shell, you can use something called ‘Goo Gone’. It will help you easily wipe off any residue as well.

Finally, to clean the chrome and metal parts, especially the ones that maybe be a little rusty, nothing beats good’ol fashioned WD40. Just use a minuscule amount each time.

Now to clean the cymbals, you simply need a soft cloth to wipe things off (Even along the grooves). One thing to keep in mind is do not use a cymbal polish on the following surfaces:

  • Traditional.
  • Natural Cymbals.
  • Specialty finishes.

I don’t recommend a cymbal polish anyways but if you do, avoid using it on these 3 specific types of surfaces or you’ll ruin them. Only use cymbal polishes for brilliant finish cymbals only.


How Much Is A Used Pearl Drum Set Worth?

This really depends on the model and what shape / condition it’s in. Pearl drum sets are usually considered quite valuable because they are mostly high in quality and produce a great sound.

The only advice here is if you are going to shell out a few hundred dollars for a used pearl drum set, you might as well wait and save up for a new one.

Buying used things (Especially electronics / musical equipment) that are over 100 dollars is just not a good idea anyways.


How Much is Neil Peart Drum Set Worth?

Well last we heard was Neil Peart replica drum sets sold for over $29,000 (Twenty nine thousand dollars) so the real ones can easily go up to a hundred thousand or more.

After all, we’re talking about Neil Pearl here. One of the greatest drummers of all time.


How To Make A Drum Set Quieter

Sometimes when you’re playing indoors or practicing in your apartment, it can get quite annoying for your neighbours. No doubt about it. So one alternative is to ‘quite down’ your drum set. You can either used folded towels on your snare drum, hi hats, etc or if you don’t want to change the sound too much but just lower the volume, use something called drum mute pads. They are simply pads that you put on each type of drum (Snare, Cymbal, etc) and they help you drop the volume on it by a decent amount. A simple idea that works. Feel free to double down on these pads of you want to make your drum set quieter. Evan drum mute pads (Amazon Link) seems to be the popular choice.


How to buy a drum set for beginners?

Well for starters, you need to make sure you actually get the following 5 pieces in your drum kit.

1. A drum shell which includes toms and the main bass drum. A bass drum also happens to be the largest component of a drum kit.

2. All the hardware which is like the pedals, drum stands, etc.

3. Cymbals. So you can enjoy that classic ‘hissing’ sound, ‘drum roll’, etc.

4. A comfortable drum throne so you can sit and play. You could get away with an adjustable stool (That goes fairly low) but if you can get a proper drum throne, it’s probably better.

5. Drumsticks.

Next step is to make sure you get all of these things in your drum kit. They are usually known as a “5 piece drum kit” but make sure you double check everything prior to purchase.

The beginner kits are perfect for starters but the cymbals are kind of amateur on most of these. Not really a big deal when you are starting out but something to keep in mind. Most drummers usually just upgrade the cymbals and keep ‘drumming’ away (Nice pun right?).

Once you start getting better at drumming and decide to go a level up, the hardware just gets more quality. Basically, the higher the price, the more quality the product is. Guess this principle applies to pretty much anything right?

One thing to keep in mind is always get a decent drum throne. Since you’ll be sitting on it for a while and practicing as well, it’s best to not just be comfortable drum throne, but also a safe one. Another fun tip is make sure the pricing of your drum kit is similar to your cymbals (That is when you do decide to upgrade). As most decent sounding cymbals usually cost as much as a beginner drum kit.

Finally if you do decide to upgrade your drums, try tuning the sound first as it’s a lot more cost effective and you just might get that professional level drum sound (Without going broke).

Sources:

Peter Thomas
Peter is a well-known guitar teacher in Ealing. He’s taught hundreds of guitarists of all levels, covering everything from rock and pop to jazz and classical.Have a question, need some help, or want to give your opinion? Drop us a comment below!

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