The battery is a very fascinating instrument, but because of its volume and size, many people do not want to study this musical instrument, opting for something more “practical”.
Today we are lucky to have electronic models available, which will allow you to play at any time without disturbing your neighbors.
The electronic drums are also very compact and can be placed in the house very easily.
Want to know more?
Let’s find out together how to choose the best electronic drum kit according to your needs, evaluating the best models on the market.
Below we present you the best electronic drums:
1. Alesis Command Mesh Kit
The well-known brand Alesis proposes its Command Mesh Kit composed of eight
pieces: 25 cm double-zone mesh snare drum, three 20 cm double-zone mesh tom pads,
a 20 cm kick drum mesh tower pad including pedal, three cymbals
(laughs, charlestons, crashes with chokes).
In addition to the eight pieces are included the chrome frame, sticks, cables, the
key and power.
Integrated in this kit, you will find a sequencer that will allow you to register,
to connect an mp3 player and also to record and manage MIDI files.
With this model, connecting to your computer will be very easy!
You will also have 70 drum kits with more than 600 sounds, 60 bases and
even a convenient metronome.
Thanks to the USB input, you can even load WAVE samples!
A resourceful, versatile, practical, compact and easy to mount model
and store, which does not give up offering a solid robustness.
2. 470X Digital Drums Mesh Battery Kit
The DD470X model is a quality digital Mesh drum kit with unique non-contact drum sensor technology, and comes complete with an eight-piece kit (five drums and three cymbals), kick drum pedal, sticks and extras, including a pair of headphones, stool and a pair of spare sticks. the pads are very responsive to baton shots and easy to play, and you can use a preset of 10 kits and 203 sounds via the control unit.The model is very versatile and is recommended for both the stage and the studio, great for beginners, but also suitable for professionals. In addition to use in headphones, you can connect it to an amplifier or a PA.MIDI and Mini USB connections allow you to connect the instrument to your computer and then use your favorite software.
3. Alesis Nitro Mesh Kit
The Alesis Nitro Mesh Kit offers a complete set of eight pieces: bi-zone snare drum, three toms and three cymbals (ride, crash with choke function, charleston), as well as the eight pieces you’ll find an aluminium rack to mount the pieces on, sticks, power supply, tuning keys and cables, and mesh skins offer an immersive and realistic response that’s gaining the trust of today’s drummers.The 40 modern and classic kits, the 60 accompanying tracks and the 350 sounds, are excellent tools for sound research and practice. thanks to the USB-MIDI and MIDI in/out ports, you can interface with your computer and also search for new sounds. there is also the practical metronome and the ability to listen through headphones, to practice in a silent way.
4. Digital Drums 400 by Gear4Music
The DD-400 from the Gear4music brand includes three cymbals, four pads, a kick drum, drumsticks, a pair of headphones and even a stool! The package contains everything you need to start playing right away and, thanks to the headphones, you can have fun without disturbing your neighbours. the pads are responsive and realistic and the drums are very compact and lightweight, so great for those who have little space or have to carry it often.With MIDI and USB connectivity you can also interface with your computer, record, work with midi files and even download your beats and edit them with your favorite software. the control unit offers intuitive and easy to use controls, thanks to which you can have access to 10 pre-programmed kits, 40 patterns and 108 voices. this model is particularly suitable for beginners, but also suitable for more advanced levels.
5. XDrum DD-400 digital electronic drum kit
This model is called Xdrum DD-400 and consists of four toms, three cymbals and pedals for Charleston, Bass Drum and Kick. The rubber pads are durable and realistic and the product comes complete with all the necessary standard accessories and instruction manual for easy assembly.The control unit with LED display, contains 10 pre-programmed kits, 40 songs, 108 voices and a demo song: DC 9V, USB, MIDI Out, Output L/Mono, Output R, Aux In, Headphone Out This way you can connect the battery to your computer and work with your favorite software to record and edit midi files, you can also listen to yourself in headphones or decide to connect to an external monitor or audio system.
6. Alesis DM Lite electronic drum kit
Back to the Alesis brand, this time with the DM Lite kit, the kit is compact and comes complete with a snare pad, 3 toms, 3 triangle-shaped cymbals, foldable and pre-assembled rack, sticks and cables. the peculiarity of this model is definitely the contour of LED lights on each piece, which is very useful for exercises. the sound module offers 30 melodies designed just to learn how to play, also offers 10 ready-to-use kits and more than 200 classic and modern sounds.Thanks to the 1/8″ auxiliary input, you can play songs and tracks of your choice: you can then play your favorite songs and accompany them playing on it.there is also a USB/MIDI connection, to connect the battery to your PC and use software and virtual instruments.1/4″ stereo outputs allow you to connect the battery to an audio system or an amplifier.
7. Alesis CompactKit 4 Electronic Drum Kit
A tabletop model is great for those who want to get close to the instrument, but also for those who want to always have a mini battery that you can always take with you for fun. In the CompactKit 4 you find four sensitive pads that allow you to get different shades, which you can decide whether to listen from the built-in speaker or from the headphones.The kit also offers the Game function, to learn while having fun.very interesting is also the Coach function: by loading your favorite track and activating the Coach you will see the notes shown on the display, to learn how to play your song in a simple way.there are also quality sounds, with 70 voices of percussion, 10 voices of effects and 50 accompanying songs.
Brief history of electronic drums
The electronic drum kit was invented in the early 70’s by Wolfgang Flür, but its diffusion took place about ten years later, when the major brands of musical instruments began to produce and launch them on a large scale.
How do electronic drums work?
Electronic drum kits consist of two main parts: the pads and the sound module.
The pads are rubber “discs”, which are placed instead of drums and cymbals.
When the drummer hits the pad, it transforms the impulse to the sound module, which transforms it into a note.
Modern models have a great sensitivity and are able to perceive every little nuance, depending on the area in which the pad is hit and also on the power of the blow.
What do electronic drum kits look like?
The electronic drums are sold in complete kits and consist of pad toms, drum pads, snare pads, laughs, crashes and charlestons, as well as the sound module and pedals.
It’s all mounted on a handy foldable rack and some manufacturers include extra accessories, such as sticks, stool or headphones.
The transformer is usually included, as are the various cables.
The sound module
In addition to its main function, the sound module can offer various extras and connections.
Often there are functions that allow you to do drums exercises (drum practice) and, in today’s models, you can almost always not only connect to an audio system, but also connect your mp3 player or your computer.
Difference between Rubber Pad and Mesh Rubber Pad
The rubber pads are similar to the pads that are used in practice. They tend to have a very similar feel to each other and this consistency makes them suitable for loops and sustained tones.
Rubber pads are cheaper and are generally found on the most affordable models.
Mesh pads, on the other hand, have a mesh surface, whose response is much more similar to that of an acoustic drum kit. The rebound is slightly better and makes these pads easier to play.
Many mesh pads also allow you to change the tension and are usually more sensitive to touch by hand.
These pads are more expensive than rubber pads and are therefore used on mid-range and up models.
A pad can have one or more triggers (2 or 3).
The presence of multiple triggers allows you to get different sounds depending on the area in which you hit the pad.
5 Advantages of Electronic Batteries
Even many professional drummers now have a digital version and even if they don’t give up on acoustics during live performances, they find this instrument excellent to be able to practice without problems of volume or space.
As it happens with other instruments, the electronic version is often born for practicality, but it develops bringing other advantages.
The 5 main advantages of owning an electronic drum kit are:
If you have to deal with several different musical genres, you can find in the digital models the great advantage of being able to adapt it in a few seconds to different styles and sounds.
Convenience for live performances
The drummer is the element that takes the longest time to assemble and disassemble the instrument and often the time can be tight, as well as the stages.
With electronics, the drummer takes much less time to prepare the equipment and takes up less space.
The battery is a very difficult instrument to miking and there are many theories about the best miking methodology.
When using external microphones, it is clear that each element will inevitably fit into the microphone for another piece.
The electronic model does not present any problem, as no microphones are needed, but it is sufficient to connect it to your computer equipped with DAW.
Freedom of use
Anyone who plays an instrument knows that there are many limitations to timetables: neighbors don’t care if you are the new John Bonham, they want to sleep and watch TV without listening to your performances.
The electronic models don’t emit sound, you can only hear the slight tapping of the sticks on the pad.
To hear the sound of the drums you need to connect to an audio system or, when this is not possible, listen to yourself through practical headphones.
Lightweight and compact, electronic batteries can be transported much more easily and conveniently, even in a small car.
Drummer’s introduction to the world of electronic batteries
For a drummer accustomed to his acoustics, switching to electronics may not be easy at all.
Let’s see the major differences the drummer will find when switching to electronics:
Presence of Sound
A drummer is used to hearing the sound coming directly from the instrument.
Switching to the electronic model may feel “lost” in hearing the sound coming from the audio system, especially if it is far away.
The solution is simply to use spy monitors.
With the first uses, the drummer may notice a slight delay between the blow and the perception of the sound: this perception decreases with time.
The bounce, the response and the attack are very different between acoustic and electronic, for this reason it is preferable to buy a model with mesh pads, more similar to the traditional drums.
Percussion instruments have a lot of dynamics: you go from just whispered sounds to noisy ones and this has always made it difficult to bring the same dynamic response of an acoustic to an electronic one.
The sound modules, however, allow you to adjust both sensitivity and dynamism.
Percussion players may find it difficult with these kits, but for them there are other instruments more suitable and designed just for those who want to play with their hands instead of with sticks.
The Best of the Two Worlds: Electroacoustics, a “Hybrid” Kit
Would you like to have some advantages of the electronic models, but you absolutely don’t want to leave your acoustics?
No problem! Now you can integrate an acoustic battery with triggers!
Amplification and Audio Systems of Electronic Batteries
Electronic drums only emit sound when connected to headphones or audio systems.
When you’re on a live evening or in the rehearsal room with other musicians, you’ll need a monitor (better two) to keep next to you in order to hear the sounds you’re making.
In addition to electronic drums there are also drum “machines”, which are “boards” with surfaces to touch, knobs and buttons that allow you to create loops and patterns.
Today there are software that allows you to get the same results, but the charm of the manual touch remains and the drum millstones are still used, especially in the genres EDM, rap and hip-hop.
Another instrument we can find is digital percussion.
They are a “tablet” with pads that can be played with both sticks and hands.
What to consider when purchasing a kit
There is no such thing as the best electronic drum set, everyone has to find the perfect model for their level and needs.
The key factors to consider when purchasing an electronic drum kit are:
How strong and robust is it? This is essential, because saving for a product that will tend to break in a short time is definitely not convenient!
Quality and safety
For the same number of pieces, not all kits are the same: the quality can change considerably between kits that at first glance may seem very similar.
The advice is always to choose at least medium quality even if you are a beginner, while for the more advanced and experienced we recommend the higher end models.
Number of pieces
Although the number of pieces is almost always the same, check carefully all that is included in the package: number of pads and extra accessories, as well as the functions of the sound module, the drum rhythms included and the sounds.
Ease of use
Clearly, the search is aimed at finding the model that best suits your needs: if you are used to traditional drums you will find a model in mesh easier to play.
The average price of a complete kit varies greatly from model to model, depending on the materials, the parts included and the functions available.
The entry level models with rubber pads are around 200/250 euros, while the mesh kits usually start from 400 euros and can even reach a thousand euros or more in models dedicated to professionals.
Is it easy to learn the battery?
Learning how to play the drums can be very simple or very difficult: it all depends on how much you’re good at and how fast you learn.
This instrument requires excellent coordination between the arts and an excellent sense of rhythm.
You also need a lot of exercise to learn, so good will is essential for those who want to learn any musical instrument.
Do I have to take drum lessons?
It is always advisable to be followed by a teacher, especially at the beginning, to avoid taking an incorrect approach and posture.
A teacher can also teach you tricks for the drums and use a particular method based on your skills and weaknesses, things that a self-taught course could not offer you.
Having a teacher is an extra incentive for those who tend to be lazy: having an appointment you can’t cancel!
What do I need to get started?
At the beginning you could start to practice on the basics with a simple pad and a couple of sticks, in time you’ll need a complete kit.