We help you find a practice drum kit that not only sounds good, but will help you hone your skills and won’t take up too much room. Here's our top 8 options.
As drummers, we face a few difficulties when trying to practice, hone our skills and learn new techniques especially if we have limited room or can’t make a lot of noise. Thankfully, there are a few kits out there designed to provide superb, professional level playability and sound without disturbing our neighbours or housemates too much.
So today, we’ve compiled a list of practice drum sets that actually sound and feel great. These are our favourite practice drum kits that prove you don’t have to sacrifice quality when you’re trying to save room! Here they are in price ascending order.
1. TOURTECH TT-12SM Electronic Drum Kit with Mesh Snare
At under £250 the TOURTECH TT-12SM Electronic Drum Kit with Mesh Snare is probably one of the best practice drum kits on the market today, providing players with exceptional feel and response as well as super expressive kits that actually sound really good!
Straight out of the box you get a hard wearing 7-piece kit with comfortable tom pads and cymbals as well as a mesh snare that replicates the feel and dynamic response of an acoustic kit. The rack is easy to pack away and set up and the module you get comes with 250 high quality percussion voices, 20 preset kits with 10 user defined kits as well as 20 demo songs to jam along to. There’s built in song playback and recording and the Aux in allows you to jam along to your own tracks. You can also connect the TT12SM to your computer via MIDI or USB for triggering and recording directly to your DAW. A powerhouse practice drum kit that won’t break the bank.
2. Mapex Tornado 5 Piece 18" Fusion Drum Kit
Again, just because we’ve added this to the practice drum set list, it doesn’t mean you can’t safely gig with it as the Mapex Tornado 5 Piece 18" Fusion Drum Kit is a monster kit at a budget friendly price. You get 2 rack toms, 1 x floor tom, kick drum snare as well as Hi Hat & Crash/Ride cymbals and a full set of double braced hardware, so you’re getting everything you need to play straight out of the box for under £300.
If you’re an experienced drummer and you need a spare kit or smaller kit for around the house to jam out some ideas or practice, this is ideal. The tight, punchy bass and crisp, clear toms sound great thanks to the 9-ply poplar shells and the smaller scale makes it easy to transport, set up and pack down. A hard working, great sounding fusion kit drummers of all levels will enjoy playing.
3. Roland TD-1K Electronic Drum Kit
The Roland TD-1K Electronic Drum Kit is a perfect beginners electric drum kit and a fantastic practice drum set for those who want the legendary V-drum performance and sound at a budget friendly price. We love this kit as it’s packed with 15 expressive drum kits spanning several music genres and the fact it’s so easy to set up and pack away.
The TD-1 module is packed with fantastic practice and tuition features including metronome, record and playback features and the onboard Coach function which helps you hone your skills. You can also practice along with your own songs via the Mix In jack directly from your tablet, smartphone or MP3 player and the USB-MIDI connectivity allows you to connect to DT-1 Drum Tutor, V-Drums Friend Jam series and your DAW for direct recording.
Beater less kick pedal keeps the noise down and the comfortable pads ensure you’re not disturbing the neighbours whilst playing. A great practice drum kit aimed at beginners and experienced drummers who just want to play in silence.
4. Yamaha DTX402K Electronic Drum Kit
The Yamaha DTX402K Electronic Drum Kit is another electronic drum kit aimed at the beginners and professionals alike who want to be able to jam ideas and practice their technique at home.
You have 10 drum kits built in, spanning a wide range of genres as well as 10 built-in training functions to hone your skills. The newly developed drum pads are comfortable to play and the beaterless kick drum is silent, so you’re not disturbing your housemates or neighbours when you’re playing. We think this is one of the best practice drum kits due to the very enjoyable learning features you have access to via the DTX402 Touch app. This is available for free on both iOS and Android devices and contains things like Challenge mode which is just like a video game encouraging you to play along to tracks and score accuracy points. You can also completely customise drum kits to create your own signature sound!
Hard wearing, comfortable drum pads, easy pack down frame and a small footprint – a great practice drum set that doesn’t cost a fortune.
5. Ludwig Questlove Breakbeats Shell Pack, Black Gold Sparkle
Time and time again, the Ludwig Questlove Breakbeats Shell Pack pictured here in Black Gold Sparkle is relied upon by professional and beginner drummers with limited space. This signature series designed by legendary drummer Ahmir 'Questlove' Thompson (The Roots) has been crafted with apartments in mind and those who want to be able to transport kits easily without hurting their back.
You get a 5x14" matching wood snare drum, 14x16" bass drum, 7x10" tom, and 13x13" floor tom all crafted with 7-ply hardwood shells. You also get velvet storage bags included too! A great sounding practice drum set that pro level drummers will love using too!
6. TOURTECH TT-22M Electronic Drum Kit with Mesh Heads
The TOURTECH TT-22M Electronic Drum Kit with Mesh Heads proves that you don’t have to spend a fortune to get a great feeling practice drum kit that you can also comfortably take to the stage and studio.
This makes our best practice kits blog thanks to the fact it’s an electronic drum kit with all-mesh heads providing realistic feel and response. It’s an 8 piece kit with a fold-out and play ergonomic rack stand so you’ve got everything you need to hone your skills and technique, but the experienced drummers out there will enjoy the fact you have dual zone mesh heads on the snare and toms which allow you to trigger two sounds from one pad – ideal for rim shots and cross sticks. The cymbals also feature a choke function, so it’s as realistic as you can get.
There’s also 26 preset drum kits plus 15 user-defined drum kits that you can make use of as well as 458 high quality percussion voices to choose from – all genres are catered for. The fact you can use headphones for silent practice, hook up an MP3 player via the Aux in for jamming along to tracks and record all your performances means this is a practice drum kit to be reckoned with. best of all, it’s under £400 – that’s right, a mesh head kit for under £400!
7. Gretsch Catalina Club Jazz 4 Piece Drum Kit
Let’s face it, a mini Gretsch kit is always a winner whether you need a smaller practice drum kit for around the house or just something portable for gigs. Mini Gretsch kits just sound amazing and the Gretsch Catalina Club Jazz 4 Piece Drum Kit is no exception. For under £550 you get a bop size 18x14 bass drum, 14x14 floor, 12x8 rack with a 14x5.5 snare drum all made with 7-ply mahogany shells and 30 degree bearing edges for a punchy, jazzy tone. You’re not going to blow any windows out with this kit, but once you’ve added your pedals and cymbals you’ll certainly have an impressive but manageable sound to practice with in rehearsal or at home.
You also get Remo drum heads as standard as well as "Gas Cap" bass drum mount plate and Mini GTS mounting system with Single cymbal mount and 12.7mm L-Arms so you only need to add minimal hardware. A great practice drum kit you can comfortably gig with.
8. DW Design Series Frequent Flyer 4-Piece Kit Tobacco Burst
If you want a smaller size kit for smaller sized gigs or a practice drum kit that really doesn’t compromise on sound the DW Design Series Frequent Flyer 4-Piece Kit is probably the crème of the crop. Although it’s quite a bit more pricey than the rest of the kits in this blog, it’s totally worth it as it’s built with premium tonewood and designed to bring out the best sound possible.
The North American Maple shells have been specifically designed to optimise sound while remaining compact enough for easy transport. This means you get a full bodied, crisp sound from the smaller shells so you can easily gig with it, but again, you’re not going to blow out any windows on its own.
The True-Pitch tension rods help your drums stay in tune, there’s a MAG snare Throw Off, True-Tone Snare Wires and DW Remo drum heads – all appointments professionals should expect. However, the compact 20" x 12" bass drum, 12" x 8" rack tom and shallow 14" x 11" floor tom are small enough for professionals who are sick of carrying around a larger kit! Best of all, the Frequent Flyer kit also comes with a matching 14" x 5" snare, so you’re getting quite a lot for your money.