How to Choose the Drum Set for Kids and Beginners – 2024 Guide

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So, is it your kid that wants to learn playing drums? Just entered school or finishing it? Or maybe it’s you who decided to finally master that energetic art? It all concludes the same: you need a drum set for beginners or for kids. Here is a instruction on what you have to consider while selecting it – both for kids and for adults mastering the art of a drummer.

How to Select the Best Drum Set for Kids

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The problem with kids is that they grow. So the drum set for kids should be, first, smaller than an adult one. Second, everything’s height should be adjustable. Third, nevertheless, it should be similar to the real set. And fourth, no one would mind it being a little simpler at the beginning.

There are specialized sets for kids, already suitable for their height and easily adjustable within some range. It may suit, say, children from 2.5 to 5 feet tall, and that’s what matters more than age. An older or a younger kid may play this “inappropriate” set if their height enables them to.

This adjustability, though, is not endless. The more the kid grows, the more professional should the drum set be. Luckily, there are specialized sets for kids under $100 that imitate real ones closely and are comfortable to play for kids of different heights. If you have several kids, they can pass the beginner set to each other, growing and selecting a larger one. Otherwise, you can sell it on eBay as soon as the young player starts to feel not so comfortable at the drums.

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There are some specific drums one just needs. For example, the beginner set may only have a hi-hat, while a more advanced one features cymbals as well. Learning may take special sorts of the snare drum – say, for a marching orchestra.

If you want to avoid noise (whenever it’s possible), you better buy specialized silencers that reduce the volume. Some kits include them already. These pads are put over snares to absorb most of the sounds when you hit the drums. The physical feel, though, remains as it should be.

Kids’ sets are available in different designs and different colors. Well, we know all these stereotypes, but first of all, you should ask the kid whether he or she likes the set you want to buy. If there is something they dislike about the design, your money might as well be burned.

Drum Set for Adult Beginners: The Difference

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The main difference between practicing drum sets for kids and those for adult beginners is about size and height. Adults don’t need lower profile drum sets; they must feel comfortable with normal size ones.

The set usually consists of the standard drums: a bass drum, a floor tom, two toms of different size, a snare drum, a hi-hat, and cymbals, plus hardware for it all. A stool is a necessary thing, but still, some sets do not include it.

It doesn’t make sense to invest in a professional drum set unless you can afford it easily enough. A low-budget set will do for learners; you can find sets for kids along with adult sets under $500, and not only. If you’re ready to spend a bit more, there are wonderful sets by professional drum manufacturers, like Ludwig or Tama. Not only are they perfectly built; they also share the usability of professional sets by the same manufacturers, making it easier to switch afterwards.

It will not provide the same sound quality that a pro one, and hardly will it be durable enough for frequent gigs. But if it’s positioned stably in your basement or garage, it won’t matter.

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Even if you do have an isolated room like that, you will still need silencing pads. For apartments or houses with poor isolation, they are necessary. Preserving the same physical feel, these pads make training not that noisy. They often come with a set but can be bought separately as well.

Probably you’re not practicing drums alone. If you play in a garage band, it’s usually up to the drummer to take care of the place, because drums are the least mobile instrument of all. You may place your set in the studio you have (or rent) for sessions if the band decides to afford it. Anyway, that’s where sturdiness matters. As sessions may go hot, and creative concepts collide with a bang, so drums should have sturdy hardware.

This matters even more than the quality of the drums themselves (unless they’re too Chinese). Even Chinese models, though, can be very decent – generally, not for the price. Assuming you’re a beginner, numerous adjustments can make you feel lost rather than empowered to make the sound you want. Height adjustments are the exception: they are about the physical comfort you need.

Electronic Drums as an Alternative

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Considering how noisy a traditional drum set is and how much space it requires, some may ask themselves a question: maybe an electronic drum set will do the trick? The answer is both yes and no.  Electronic sets are not worse or better than acoustic ones: they are just different, designed for different experiences and results.

If the music you want to play is electronic enough, you may opt for an electronic drum kit. You can find one for under $200, and it will feel quite decent. Of course, you may also have to purchase sound banks to make it sound the way you want it. But for learning, the default voices will do.

Today’s electronic drum kits are velocity-sensitive and record-friendly. If you use them for recording a demo, you can afterwards edit the track in a piano roll, not as a waveform you get after recording acoustic drums. They are also easier to transport if you need to take them to a studio for a session.

But electronic kits are only good for learning if you intend to play and record electro drums from then on. The manner and the physical feel are too different from a real stage drum set. So first decide what type of drums you want to play and then buy a drum kit for beginners, respectively.

Your Choice?

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Which drum sets have you tried? Which would you recommend for kids and for adults? Welcome to the comments section! We know there is more to this choice, so let’s get ready to rumble!