New to e drums, looking for a kit...


Junior Member
I have never owned an e kit before, and am looking to buy one. I know that the quality varies significantly with e drums, depending on which model kit you buy. I am not looking for junk, but also not really looking to spend a whole lot either. I have been reading a little about e drum kits. I read that the brain of the kit is in the module, and that the module is what produces the sounds you hear. I am not really concerned with getting a good module though, as I use a DAW and know how to get plugins, so I don't need an expensive module (I think I am right about this, right)?

I am more concerned (if I can just get the different sounds through plugins) in the actual quality and usefulness of the kit itself. I haven't read to much into it, but I understand that there are mesh heads and rubber heads, and that mesh heads work better. So I would prefer if my kit had mesh heads. I also would prefer a good quality high hat, and also bass drum. I too read that a wide velocity reading and proper trigger sensitivity are very important for ekits.

So, considering those parameters, what do you guys suggest would be a good kit for me? I am hoping to get all of this for around 800-850, I can't spend much more than that...
You really can't go wrong with anything recent from Roland or Yamaha. I'd be looking at late model used gear for the best bang for you buck.
and be sure to check out digitalDrummer, the free online magazine for more helpful advice.


Senior Member
Roland and Yamaha are the top dogs of the e-drums market and they make the best products. If you don't like rubber pads, the next step up is Roland's mesh pads and Yamaha's DTX silicone pads. I personally prefer the DTX silicone pads as they produce a much more realistic stick rebound than the mesh heads. Rubber pads aren't bad, but they're definitely not realistic, and mesh heads are super bouncy (also not realistic to me). I can play supremely fast rolls on a mesh head that I simply cannot replicate on a real drum. My other issue with Roland is that I find they overprice their products due to the fact that they are head and shoulders the number 1 brand in the world for e-kits. It's the same thing with DW and Zildjian. For instance if you took a Zildjian and Sabian cymbal of the same size and quality level (e.g. A Custom vs AAX) the Zildjian cymbal is always more expensive.

That being said, I've found that the Yamaha 500 series (mid range) e-kits give you the best bang for your buck. I currently have the 562K and it comes with a real hi hat stand, which is something you have to spend a whole lot more money if you want on a Roland. The pads are all silicone and they have excellent sensitivity and a wide velocity range. The 502 module comes with excellent sounds including real VST's, and I was easily able to plug into my laptop through Ableton to access Addictive Drums for an even more realistic drumming experience!

So my suggestion for you is to go to your local Guitar Center or Sam Ash and try out the kits and see if you like the feel of mesh heads vs silicone vs rubber. Then once you get a better idea of which features feel the best to you, either save up or try to find a used Yamaha or Roland.