Purchasing Guide For Drums

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In this article I will give you enough information so you have a purchasing guide for drums when shopping for a drum set or what they call a drum kit. I will touch base on the different aspects of an acoustic drum kit versus an electronic.
                          Acoustic Versus Electronic
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Acoustic Drums

These kits are what most people consider normal, drums with metal cymbals and wooden shells.


1-You don’t need speakers, amplifiers, to hear yourself play.
2- These kits are what a majority of drummers use, especially if you plan on joining a band which I consider the best option.
3-They have a more dynamic sound by how hard you hit the drum, or you could make different types of sounds using brushes or sticks or mallets etc. You can also alter the noise level or tone.
4-It’s much easier to add or eliminate to an acoustic drum kit.


1-Carrying all these drums and hardware are difficult for transport when playing out on a gig, they are bulky and some are heavy, like the bass drum.
2-They can be a disturbance to neighbors and family because of being so loud.

Electronic Drum Sets


1-You don’t have to tune electronic drum sets or worry about breaking a drum head.
2-They can produce a range of sounds to fit what music you are playing.
3-They are a lot lighter and compact, so easier to transport.
4-As for disturbing people around you, you can put headphones into these, making them almost silent, other than your sticks causing a thumping noise hitting the pads.


1-In my experience, you just don’t get a true drum sound as you do when playing on an acoustic drum kit.
2-if your playing live you just don’t get the same effect or feeling when playing.
3-You can’t get the sound of rim shots and stick taps as you can with an acoustic drum kit.

Price Range

An acoustic drum kit  can go anywhere as little as $200 all the way up to a high end of $5,000
An electronic drum setcan go as little as $200 up to $4,000


An electric drum set can be useful for recording demos, as you can record straight from your drums right into your computer, whereas, you would need microphones for acoustic drum kits.
In my opinion, if you are recording in a studio, an electric drum set is much easier to control. I prefer the acoustic drum kit when playing out or jamming with fellow musicians, they are so much more dynamic, you can use either one, it’s just easier with electric drums for the technician controlling the recording.

What You Should Consider When Buying

Drums come in different sizes which makes each drum sound different. The most common size for each drum are as follows:
1-14″ Snare Drum
2- 12″ and 13″ hook up toms
3- 16′ floor tom
4- 22″ bass drum.
These sizes give you a nice variety of sound, which is suitable for playing a large variety of music type.

Shell Material

1- Your most common shell is made of maple, its tone is well-balanced and has a warm effect
2- mahogany gives you a low-end and mid-range, which gives it a warm vintage type sound.
3- Birch gives you a darker tone, it has punchy -low-end, as well as boosted high-end frequencies.
4- Poplar gives you a bright sound and is sometimes used as a less expensive alternative to maple.

Drum heads

Drum heads at one time were made traditionally out of animal hides, but today they are made of a plastic called Mylar. Thinner drum heads give you a brighter or sharper sound, which a lot of jazz players look for. Thick drum heads give you a fatter deeper or muddier sound with less resonance, which a lot of rockers use for heavier music. This is the type of skin I prefer since I mainly play classic rock.

Drum sticks

Sticks can be very confusing when it comes to picking out a pair. The number assigned to a drumstick refers to its circumference, the lower the number the larger the circumference. 
So, if you are playing loud music you would want a thicker drum stick. If you plan on playing jazz or folk music you would want to choose a thinner pair with a larger circumference number on the drum stick.

A few different examples of cymbals and their use

1– Avedis Zildjian 18″ projection crash cymbalThis cymbal has a deep and full-bodied tone which has a clarity sound. It is very versatile and has excellent tonal quality. The design allows maximum projection when needed.


It has a brilliant finish. It’s made from a copper and tin ratio of 80/20 which gives it a powerful, full sounding tone when hit hard. When hitting it lightly it gives you a bright with plenty of sustain when pulling back


These cymbals can dull very quickly and you need to polish them often.
2- Sabian 41406x 14″ thin crash cymbal -This cymbal produces a bright and cutting sound which is great for accenting.this cymbal is sturdier than other thin cymbals and cheaper than high-end cymbals without affecting its quality.


Made from BB bronze(92% copper 8% tin), it is ideal for accenting with a punchy and fast sound. It’s a very bright and tight sounding cymbal.


This cymbal has a tendency to split faster than the heavier cymbals because of its thickness and weight.
3- Sabian Brass sb1811 18″ crash/ride cymbal- This cymbal can be loud and powerful with a dual-purpose, you can use it as a crash cymbal or a ride cymbal, which makes it a highly versatile cymbal. This cymbal is good for people that have a limited budget, where you don’t have to buy 2 separate cymbals.


This cymbal is made from brass with high-pressure hammering and traditional hand lathing techniques for excellent quality. You can use this cymbal for a light tapping ride or as a heavy hitting crash and has a lively bell that is very responsive.


Some drummers find this cymbal a little too dull sounding.
4- Paiste Cymbal pst8reflector 16″ rock crash- This cymbal is generally used for loud music. It is made from BB bronze and hand hammered which gives it a bright powerful tone.


Hand hammered with a reflector finish made from BB bronze (92% copper 8% tin), which is what gives the cymbal the loudness for loud music. It has an energetic, tonal quality with a wide range, clean mix and short sustain.


This cymbal tends to wear out quicker than other cymbals.
5- Meinl Cymbal hcs16tac brass trash crash cymbal 16″- Because this cymbal has holes in it, it gives you a dry sound with a trashy sound and less sustain. It’s perfect for a short loud accent.


Made from brass alloy (63% copper 37% zinc), gives you a quick and bright sound, great for a short burst of sound. You can stack this cymbal on top of other cymbals for different sounds.


Some drummers just don’t like the sound, especially if you want sustain in your accents.
Hopefully you gained some knowledge by reading my review on some of these items and have a better understanding of what you are looking to purchase on drums, whether it be acoustic or electronic I wish you the best of luck, keep on drumming and enjoy it. If you have any questions or comments please don’t hesitate to ask and I will do my best to try and answer them.

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