The 10 Best Drum Sets 2020: Reviews of the Best Brands
If you are a drum player, you might have already realized that drum sets price may vary a lot, depending on many factors: the elements included, the brand, the level of the player… Let’s be honest: it is not easy to choose among so many options.
To help you with this, we have made a review of the best brands, including both shell packs and drum sets, depending on what you are looking for. Bear in mind that shell packs do not include other elements apart from drums, like the hardware or cymbals. So, if you are looking for the complete kit, have a look at the drum sets instead.
Have a look to our choices and find the right drums for you!
Pearl Roadshow 5-piece Drum Set
Pearl Corporation is a wholesale distributor of drums and other percussion instruments for the United States. Drums are imported from factories located in Taiwan, China and Thailand.
The Roadshow kit is a perfect option if you want a whole set of good quality at a very reasonable price. Drums shells are made of multiple plies of hardwood creating a single air resonance chamber. The hardware included contains dual-reinforced stands, adjustable in angle and height, and a chain-drive bass drum pedal.
- Different gig-ready setups and colors to choose: fusion, jazz, rock…
- Limited 2-year warranty
- Drums, cymbals and hardware included
PDP By DW 7-Piece Concept Maple Drum Set
PDP (Pacific Drums and Percussion) was established in 1999. Since then, they have manufactured quality products and accessories for drummers, aiming to be accessible to all (something that is reflected in their product prices).
Designed in California, the Concept Maple kit is available in both 5 and 7-pieces. The maple used in its production produces a much warmer tone than the birch option, and that is why we like it more. Besides, all drum shells are 7-ply, with the exception of the snare drum, which is 10-ply.
- Hardware and cymbals are not included
- Includes 1-year manufacturer’s warranty
- Available in different sparkle, pearlescent, lacquered and faded colors
Gretsch Catalina Maple 7-Piece Rock Shell Pack
Gretsch origins date from 1883, year in which Friedrich Gretsch opens a music shop in Brooklyn. Since then, it has been the brand chosen by many professional drummers and music legends: Cindy Blackman, Vinnie Colaiuta, or even Charlie Watts from The Rolling Stones have chosen the Gretsch drums.
The Catalina Maple series is a popular choice among many drum players. It is designed having in mind the functionality of the set, the sound and the performance. The result? An impeccable sound with an excellent craftsmanship and gorgeous design.
- Available in walnut, deep cherry burst, and satin deep cherry burst
- All drums feature Remo drum heads
- All drums include a new black/gold Catalina Maple round badge
Yamaha Stage Custom Birch 5pc Drum Shell Pack
There is no need to talk about Yamaha, a well-know quality brand whose origins are back to 1887, when Torakusu Yamaha built the first reed organ in Japan to continue establishing in 1897 the Nippon Gakki company (the current Yamaha Corporation).
On the drums section, the Yamaha’s Stage Custom Birch series has been there for more than 30 years. Drums have a six-ply structure and 100% birch drum shells with air seal system. Thanks to this, the tone produced is warm, with an amazing vibration, while keeping a gorgeous look thanks to their beautiful high-gloss lacquer finish (available in different colors).
Those are the reasons for our choice, that combines the best of Yamaha’s quality at a very good price.
- Hardware, cymbals, stands, kick pedal, or throne are not included
- Available in different colors: natural wood, cranberry red, raven black, honey amber, pure white
- Kick drum available in different sizes: 18”, 20”, and 22”
Ashthorpe 5-Piece Full Size Drum Set
A pretty decent drum set if you are a beginner looking for a very affordable option.
The Ashthorpe drum set is available in different colors. It is made with the highest quality materials, such as Remo UT-series heads for its 5 drums, genuine Poplar hardwood shells, and top-quality brass cymbals.
It is a bargain, honestly, if you want to begin playing drums, and we cannot ask for a better quality at this price.
- Available in black, blue, and silver
- Padded adjustable throne and a pair of wood drumsticks included
- With detailed instructions for an easy set assemble
Ludwig Element Evolution 5-Piece Drum Set
Ludwig is original from Chicago, Illinois and was established in 1909. This company has a century of experience manufacturing drums, so it had to be on our list.
Ludwig is associated with good quality drums: worldwide musicians such as Fab Moretti (The Strokes), John Densmore (The Doors), or Patrick Carney (The Black Keys) among many others are just a tiny example of the drummers that trust on their sets.
If you are still learning to master the drums and want to invest on a well-known brand like Ludwig, the Evolution series is a good choice. This intermediate drum set includes hardware and Zildjian ZBT cymbals.
- Available in black and blue, emerald and gold sparkle
- Includes throne and kick pedal
- Drums feature triple-flange hoops and keystone lugs
Sawtooth Command Series 6-Piece Drum Set
Specially if your a vintage drum lover, Sawtooth is a perfect brand to take into consideration.
We have selected the Command Series for being a very complete set that includes Zildjian cymbals (you can choose between S or ZBT cymbals) and ChromaCast hardware. If you prefer it, you can get only the shell pack. There are also other options with only 4, 5, or 7 pieces as well.
The drums on this kit feature ply poplar shells to produce a warm and classic tone with some live sonic lows. What else can we say? A good quality-price ratio for a whole set of drums!
- Includes virgin bass drums with telescopic bass drum spurs
- Available in red streak, white oyster and silver sparkle
- Shell pack only also available at a lower price
Tama Superstar Classic Custom 7-Piece Shell Pack
Tama is a well-known brand when it comes to drums, with many years of experience behind. Professional musicians such as Stewart Copeland (The Police), Lars Ulrich, (Metallica), or John Tempesta (The Cult) use Tama drums, making the company’s name even bigger.
Among their different products, the Superstar Classic Set is a favorite one. It combines design, high quality, and a great tone projection, all together. However, as the sound is the priority of the company, this set’s rich resonance is achieved thanks to the selected maple shells used and the attention focused on the molding and bearing of the edge shape.
This Superstar Classic set is a perfect option taking into account Tama’s high quality, but if you are looking for a more affordable starter kit, the Tama Imperialstar is also a choice to consider.
- 100% maple shells
- Excellent sterling tone and a clear and nice projection
- Features the Star-Mount system that increases drums’ resonance
Ddrum Reflex Uptown 6-Piece 22 Drum Set
Ddrum is a company that started in 1983 in Sweden. However, it was not until 2005 that they expanded their product line, becoming a full line drum company. In fact, they define themselves as a company of drummers for drummers.
They were the first using 100% ash wood in their acoustic kits, a material used only in guitars until then. Blended with maple inner, it produces the Alder tone, warm and focused with smooth overtones. This 6-piece drum set is an example, and it comes with everything for a reasonable price.
- Features chrome fix pitch suspension mounts
- Includes 1-year manufacturer’s warranty
- Ddrum’s face-off lugs in drums: a unique Ddrum design
Mapex Armory Series 6-Piece Studioease Shell Pack
Mapex has been manufacturing quality drums and drum sets for more than 30 years. Since the company was founded in 1989, they have received industry awards and recognitions from NAMM or Music and Sound Retailer.
The Armory Series reproduces the Mapex hybrid shell concept: a fusion of birch and maple. This series also features the SONIClear Bearing Edge that enhances the projection and tone, making this more consistent.
- Tomahawk snare drum included
- Features a SONIClear bearing edge in the drums, achieving a better projected tone
- It is a shell pack, which means that hardware is not included
An excellent, high-quality option for vintage drum lovers and intermediate-advanced players in general.
- Includes Zildjian cymbals to choose
- 4, 5, or 7-piece versions also available
- If you are an intermediate or beginner, there can be other more affordable options.