Mesh head guide for drummers | What’s best for your budget?

mesh heads for drums

Mesh heads have become the go-to drum head type for electronic drum kits and are also a great option when you want that real kit feel at a lower volume.

Due to the popularity, there are now several options available on the market. In this guide, we’ll talk through the different types of mesh heads available and which are the best for your budget.

What are mesh drum heads?

Mesh heads are a type of drum head that aims to give you the feel of a normal acoustic drum head but at a lower volume. Tradition heads are made from plies of mylar sheets whereas mesh is made from plies of woven material. 

Since it is woven they don’t produce the sound you would expect from a drum head. There is almost no sound. Since there are tiny holes all over the mesh, all the air is escaping removing any tone or volume.  

In general, mesh heads do provide more rebound due to how the plies are woven and how the tension is formed on the head.  

Why would I want mesh heads?

There are two main reasons for wanting mesh heads. 

1. Making your drum kit quieter

If you are wanting to make your drum kit quieter replacing your standard drum heads for mesh heads is going to do a great job. This will drastically reduce the volume. If you are wanting to remove even more volume, switch out your resonant heads for mesh heads as well. This will remove even more volume but it will remove any tone from the drum. If the sound reduction is what you are after, replace the batter head first and see if the volume is low enough for you. If you don’t need to switch out the resonant head don’t. That little bit of tone will make playing the kit a lot more enjoyable.

2. For an electric drum kit

Mesh heads are the head of choice for most electronic drum kits. They are quiet and good for triggering. Since electronic drum kits come with mesh heads you will only be replacing heads every couple of years if you look after them. 

Types of mesh drum heads available

Mesh heads come in a range of different forms. Most notably by the number of plies. They come in 1 ply, 2 plies or 3 plies. It isn’t that straight forward though as the thickness of plies will vary by manufacturer. So a 1 ply head from manufacturer A may be similar to a 2 ply head from manufacturer B.

The main thing to consider when choosing a mesh head is that you are going to be looking for the right balance of feel and volume reduction for your application. In general, quieter heads are more bouncy so you need to find what is best for you.

1 ply mesh heads

One-ply mesh heads are made from one layer of fabric. This is the most common type of mesh head you will find. In general single ply mesh heads offer great volume reduction but have a lot of rebound.

single ply mesh heads

Remo Silentstroke Heads

The Remo Silentstroke heads are made from one ply of thin mesh. The heads reduce volume by up to 70% but they are fairly bouncy. These are the most expensive of the single-ply heads available. 

Sizes available:

  • 6″ to 18″ tom heads
  • 16″ to 24″ bass drum heads

WHD Practice Mesh Drumhead

The WHD Practice Mesh Drumheads are a great option for cutting down the volume on a budget. WHD doesn’t make any claims on a percentage of volume saved.

Sizes available:

  • 10″ to 22″ heads

Tama Mesh Heads

Although Tama is predominately known for their great acoustic drums and hardware they do also manufacture mesh heads. These mesh heads are single ply and claim to save up to 70% of volume. These are also in black rather than white so that finish may be more appealing for you.

Sizes available:

  • 8″ to 16″ tom heads
  • 18″ and 22″ bass heads

Evans Soundoff Mesh Drumheads 

These are similar in appearance to the Tama heads with a nice black finish. Evans claim these can reduce volume by up to 95%. That is a massive claim but from the videos online they do seem to be extremely quiet. They are fairly bouncy though.

These heads also feature the signature level 360 technology to ensure an even playing surface. 

Sizes available:

  • 8″ to 18″ tom heads
  • 13″ and 14″ snare heads
  • 18″ to 24″ bass heads

Drum-tec Basic Mesh Heads

Drum-tec is the leaders at everything electronic drumming. This goes for their line of heads as well. They have four different types in total and this is the basic model. These are single ply and offer the best volume reduction but have a powerful rebound. These heads are available in either white or black.

Sizes available:

  • 6″ to 16″ tom heads
  • 18″ to 24″ bass drum heads

View on drum-tec

Drum-tec Pro Mesh Heads

These are the other single-ply mesh head offered by Drum-tec. Although these are single ply still, the material is very thick. This thickness gives these drums the most realistic feel. Probably the most realistic on this list. The downside is they are louder than the other heads featured. If you play an electronic kit, want the best feel but are bothered about the sound reduction, these are the mesh heads for you. These heads come in a black finish.

Sizes available:

  • 8″ to 18″ tom heads
  • 18″ to 22″ bass drum heads

View on drum-tec

2 ply mesh heads

Two-ply mesh heads are made from two sheets of mesh. In general, two-ply heads have a more natural feel but are louder than single-ply heads.

two ply mesh drum heads

Roland MH2 PowerPly Mesh Heads

The Roland MH2 PowerPly Heads are manufactured by REMO so you know you are dealing with a quality product. These are also the heads you will find on all Roland mesh head electronic drums. So if you have a Roland V-Drums kit and you want to maintain the same feel, these are the heads for you. These heads are the most expensive two-ply mesh heads. 

Sizes available:

  • 8″ to 22″ heads

Drum-tec Design Mesh Heads

With the Drum-tec design mesh heads, you are getting an all-around drum head. It has volume reduction, a good feel and accurate triggering. For a drummer looking for the best overall mesh head, this is a good option.

Sizes available:

  • 6″ to 16″ tom heads
  • 18″ to 26″ bass drum heads

View on drum-tec

3 ply mesh heads

These heads are made from three plies of mesh material. In general, three-ply heads offer a more realistic feel but don’t reduce the volume as much.

three ply mesh drum heads

Drum-tec Reel Feel Mesh Heads

The three plies on the Drum-tec Reel Feel Mesh Heads offer a more realistic feel whilst still producing accurate triggering volume reductions. 

Sizes available:

  • 6″ to 16″ tom heads
  • 18″ to 24″ bass drum heads

View on drum-tec

Jobeky Prestige 3 Ply Mesh Heads

Jobeky has become leaders in creating custom electronic drum kits that look like a real acoustic kit. The product they make is fantastic and they also have their mesh heads to match. The 3 ply mesh heads are made with three thin layers to mimic that reel feel.

Sizes available:

  • 8″ to 16″ tom heads
  • 20″ and 22″ bass drum heads

View on Jobeky

Our top pick

It is almost impossible to pick out a top mesh head to choose as they all have such different characteristics and if you are after a combination of volume reduction and feel it can be very difficult.

Based on our findings we would suggest the following:

  • Best feeling mesh head – Drum-tec Pro Mesh Heads
  • Best sound reduction – Evans Soundoff Mesh Heads

If you have the budget we would suggest choosing out a couple of heads you think fit your desired characteristics best. Give them a try and then order a full set of the ones you liked best.

Frequently asked questions

Do I need a specific head for my snare?

Most manufacturers don’t offer a specific snare drum mesh head as there is no need. As long as the size matches the head will fit just fine.

Can mesh heads damage my drums?

If you over tighten mesh heads they may damage your rims over time. Especially if your rims are made from wood. The good news for your kit is that there is no need to overtighten mesh heads.

Can I tune mesh heads?

Mesh heads don’t produce a tone so they can’t be tuned. Adjusting the tightness will affect the feel on the head and how well it triggers.

Can I change the feel of a mesh head?

You can change the feel on the mesh by adjusting the tightness of the head. When you put adjust the lugs make sure they have an even amount of tension like you would when tuning a normal acoustic drum.

Final thoughts

Mesh Drum heads are a great option for reducing the volume of your kit. Personally, I think I would only buy mesh heads for an acoustic kit if I was wanting to convert it to an electric kit. I don’t think the sound of pure mesh heads is that nice on the ear. I would rather use a couple of practice pads. But this is my personal preference.

Do you have mesh heads? What are the best ones you have tried? Let us know in the comments.

Floor snare drums | The floor tom and snare crossover you didn’t know you needed

floor snare drums snom

One of the latest trends in drumming is floor snare drums. Often called a “Snom drum” or a “Baritone Snare drum”. It is both a floor tom or a snare at the flick of a switch. More professional drummers are adding these to their kits and more manufacturers are making them.

Let’s take a look at why you would want one and what options are currently available on the market. 

What are floor snare drums?

A floor snare is in essence a floor tom with snare wires on the bottom head. You can switch between the floor tom sound and the snare side by flicking on the snare wires on and off. Just as you would with any other snare drum.

What do floor snares drums sound like?

Snare wires off

Without the snare wires on these sound just like a floor tom. That deep sound that we all know and love.

Snare wires on

It is when the snare wires are on that they become a bit more interesting. You get a very deep and fat snare sound. You will not get the same sensitivity you would expect from a snare though. Due to the depth of the drum, the snare wires aren’t as responsive so they aren’t great for ghost notes.

The final thing to note is that depending on how the drum is tuned a rim shot won’t give you the big crack you would expect from a snare.

How do I integrate a floor snare into my drum kit?

Snoms are primarily designed to be used as an auxiliary snare. This leaves you with the question of where you should place this on your kit. There are two main placements to try for your setup. 

On the left of your hi-hat (or right if left-handed)

This is the most common place you would find an extra snare if a kit has two. It makes it easy for you to play your kit as you normally would but with access to that fat snare sound on the side. 

If you are primarily wanting to use this as an extra sound on your kit, this is the way to go. 

Snom drum of the left

In the position of your first-floor tom

If you are wanting to make the most of the floor tom functionality this is probably your best bet. You can use it as a floor tom in your playing and fills and then switch on the snare sound as and when you need it for particular parts.

The main thing to consider is that this will make playing your hi-hat with the deep snare sound ticky as it is a fair distance to cross over your hands. If you are comfy with your open-handed playing you have nothing to worry about.

floor snare drum on the right

How do I tune a floor snare drum?

The main thing to consider when picking up a floor snare drum is that it can be a tricky drum to tune. If you are wanting to only use them as just a snare without the floor tom you can tune them similar to a normal snare. If you are wanting to use them as a floor tom and a snare you have a delicate balance to achieve a tuning that works for both.

Resonant head

You are going to want to tune this like you would for a floor tom of this size. If you have it too tight and you are hearing a pitch it isn’t going to give you a nice floor tom sound.

Batter head

You will need to tighten the head finger tight first. You will then want to press in the centre of the head and tighten again until the wrinkles just vanish. You will then need to pitch match the individual lugs.

Snare wires

Due to the depth of the drum, you will need to keep your snares wires fairly loose. A lot of air will be moving around inside the drum so having the snares wires too tight will give you some odd sounds you won’t want from the drum.

To consider

Each floor snare drum is going to have its unique quirks so please consider this a starting point and not a definitive guide. This is a really fun style of a drum to be creative with so take your time and enjoy the process. For more ideas check out this great video by Sounds Like A Drum.

What floor snare drums are available? 

At the moment there are only a few dedicated floor snare drums on the market. These are still a new trend that is growing in the drumming community so I am expecting more to become available in the coming years. 

Here are the top picks of the snoms currently available on the market.

Pearl Modern Utility Maple 14″x10″ Floor Snare Drum

This entry from Pearl is part of their Modern Utility line. These are reasonably priced snare drums aimed at providing an option for everything the modern gigging drummer needs. 

That is good for you as this is reasonably priced if you are looking at testing the waters for adding one of these to your kit. 

This drum is currently only available in one finish, Satin Brown.

Tama S.L.P. 14″x10″ Duo Snare

This is very similar to the Pearl offering expect it is made from birch rather than maple. The size, features and price range are very similar.

This drum is only available in one finish which is the natural birch.

Tama S.L.P. 16″x10″ Duo Snare (new for 2021)

Tama has taken the concept and gone one further. The 16″ version of the drum looks and sounds mad in the best way possible. Due to its size, it seems to achieve the deep snare sound without as much compromise on the floor tom sound. Have a listen here. 

Custom drums

Apart from these two manufacturers, no other companies are making these yet. The other option currently would be to go to a custom drum makes and ask them to make you one. 

Can I do this with an existing snare?

Yes, you can. This is where the trend originally started by doing this with a normal snare drum. It is worth noting that the dedicated floor snares drums featured in this article are deeper to make achieving the sound easier than with a not so deep snare drum.

If you are wanting to convert an existing snare drum into a snom, here is a great guide Larnell Lewis created for Drumeo.

Main points:

  • Batter side – Evans hydraulic head. Very low tuning, just above finger tight.
  • Resonant side – Evan hazy 300 (3 mm) head. Not too loose, not too tight

Our thoughts

The floor snare drum is a really interesting concept and it is interesting to see how the pros are adding these into their setups. It is still early days for these so it will be interesting to see if the trend catches on and what other manufactures bring to the market. 

The only downside with the market at the moment is that the drums are only available in one finish. If you are wanting a drum that matches your setup you are going to be out of luck (for now). It would be nice to see this available as an add-on when buying a kit. Hopefully, this is something manufacturers will look at in the future.

Also, the snoms currently available on the market are mid-range drums. It would be great to see someone push the boundaries and create a premium product that truly nails the sound whilst creating a drum that is easier to tune. That is a lot to ask but I am sure one of the many great drum companies out there will be able to achieve this.

Overall, I love the concept. As a player that uses a floor tom on the left side of my hi-hat, I would consider replacing that with a floor snare drum to get the best of both worlds.

Direct Drive Bass Drum Pedals | Ultimate guide (2021)

direct drive bass drum pedals

Direct drive bass drum pedals have become increasingly more popular amongst drummers in the past 10 years. Originally adopted by metal drummers they are now becoming mainstream across drummers of all genres.

In this post, you will find everything you need to know about direct drive bass drum pedals. 

What are direct drive bass drum pedals?

When the term direct drive bass drum pedal is used it is referring to the part of the pedal that connects the footboard and the cam. 

direct drive bass drum pedal explained

Traditionally kick drum pedals use a chain or sometimes a belt to connect the two parts of the pedal whereas a direct drive pedal uses a metal connector and bearings instead. 

The construction of the drive will vary by brand but that is the concept of the pedal.

Why choose a direct drive pedals

There are many different reasons you may want to consider a direct drive pedal vs a chain drive or belt drive. Let’s have a look at the differences below.

How they respond

The main advantage of a direct drive pedal is that they are fast to respond. This makes them ideal for fast playing. Hence why they initially became popular among metal drums who often play at higher tempos.

The main thing to consider is that you will have less power when compared to a chain drive pedal. Chain pedals don’t react as fast but the chain accelerates the beater towards the head with more power. 

direct pedal vs chain drive pedal response

How the beaters return to the starting position

The second thing to consider is that on a direct drive pedal there is no delay between the footboard and pedal returning to their original position. As the connection between them is fixed when the footboard has returned the pedal is ready to go. A chain or strap pedal may have some lag between the board and the beater. 

How much you can customise the feel

In most cases, direct-drive pedals are highly customisable. This means you can tweak the settings in intricate ways you may not get with a chain pedal.

This all depends on the pedal of course but in general, a chain drive pedal has more options to tweak the feel to your liking.

The history of direct drive pedals

Although direct drive kick drum pedals are popular today, they have been around a long time. The first popular direct drive pedal was the Ludwig Speed King. This was released in the 1950s and was a very popular pedal. Many people today still swear by those old pedals. They were manufacturer well and designed to last. 

The next wave of innovation and the increase in popularity amongst metal drummers was lead by Axis pedals. In the 1990s they launched their direct drive pedal. The pedal became very popular due to its speed and how much the pedal could be customised. 

Since the first Axis pedal, more pedals have entered the market. Many of these were smaller companies focusing on pedals but now the larger manufacturers such as Tama and Pearl have their versions of direct drive kick pedals. 

What direct drive bass drum pedals are available today?

There is now a good selection of direct drive bass drum pedals available on the market. Here is a rundown of our top picks and what we think of them.

Ludwig L203 Speed King

This is an updated version of the classic Speed King pedal newly released for 2020. Almost identical to the original, the new version has had a few tweaks to improve performance.

The good

  • A sturdy pedal that has stood the test of time
  • Reasonable price

The bad

  • Only available as a single pedal
  • Limited customisation

Axis Longboards

Axis offer a variety of different pedal to meet each drummer’s requirements. For simplicity, we are going to look at the most popular Axis Pedal, the A Longboards.

These are great pedals that can be tweaked and tailored for your perfect feel. They are also available in multiple finishes and configurations.

The good

  • Highly customisable

The bad

  • Expensive

ACD Unlimited Darwin FTW

ACD Unlimited prides themselves on their extreme attention to detail and quality. They only offer a limited selection of products with the Darwin FTW pedal being one of their main products. It is a great pedal and almost every aspect can be customised to your playing style.

These pedals are also growing fast in popularity and have already been picked up by drummers such as Alex Rudinger and Siros Vaziri.

The good

  • Extremely customisable

The bad

  • Expensive
  • Wait time on products
ACD Unlimited Darwin FTW double bass drum pedal

Trick Pro1-V 

These are possibly the nicest looking bass drum pedals on the market. They are available in many configurations to meet your specific needs and can be customised to meet your playing style.

The good

  • Customisable

The bad

  • Expensive

Pearl Demon Drive Direct Drive

The Pearl Direct Demon Drive pedals are a great option for someone looking for their first direct-drive pedal. They aren’t as customisable as most of the pedals on this list but they come in at a better price point. This makes it a good option to test if you like the feel of direct drive vs a chain.

The good

  • Reasonable price

The bad 

  • No longboard option
  • Not as customisable

Tama Dyna-Sync Series

Overall the Tama pedal is very similar to that of the Pearl Demon Drive. It is a similar price point with similar amounts of customisation. This is another great option for players wanting to try a direct drive pedal.

The good

  • Reasonable price

The bad

  • No longboard option

Our thoughts

I am a huge fan of direct drive bass drum pedals. After switching to them around 10 years ago I can’t see myself ever going back to a chain-drive pedal.

This is of course my opinion though. Each player has their style and aim they want a pedal to achieve. It is extremely hard to explain the feel difference. It is one of those situations where you need to give one a go in person. 

I would recommend visiting a local drum shop to try one out or see if a friend has one you can try. If those aren’t an option consider investing in one of the cheaper pedals, such as the Pearl or the Tama before making the larger investment into a more customisable pedal. 

Electronic Drum Kit Splash Cymbal Pads | Which are the best?

electronic drum kit splash cymbal pad

Electronic drum kit splash cymbal pads are slowly starting to enter the market. As electronic drums have grown in popularity drummers are becoming accustomed to electronic pads that have the same look of the acoustic counterparts. Splash cymbals are no exception to this rule.

Look at how far electronic drums have comes since the octagon pads of the 1980s to the electronic drums of today. They are uncomparable. 

Toms, snare, bass drums, hi-hats, rides and crash pads are commonplace on electric drum kits. It is now time for effect cymbals like electronic china cymbal pads and electronic splash cymbal pads to have their turn.

Why would you want an electronic drum kit splash cymbal pad?

In reality, you don’t need one. On an electronic drum kit, any pad can be programmed to play any sound. So a crash cymbal pad can be used as a splash if you wanted. Even though this is the case, visually they don’t do the job. 

One of the reasons drummers play is because of the striking beauty of a drum kit. Each one is unique and has a presence. For many years electronic drum kits haven’t had the same impact but in the past 10 years, they have come leaps and bounds. An electronic drum kit today can be just as cool as an acoustic one. 

Even with all this progress, some elements have been missing. Such as the beloved splash cymbal. That being said, electronic drum kit splash cymbal pads are starting to become available though and we are happy to see this. 

What electric splash cymbals are available currently?

Let’s take a look at the electronic splash cymbal pads currently available on the market. We will take you through all the splash pads we are aware of and what are thoughts are. 

Realistic looking splash pads

Triggera D11 11″ Splash Cymbal Pad

Triggera D11 11" Splash Cymbal Pad

This 11″ splash pad from Triggera is a great option for players not wanting to spend a lot of money. At only £42, that is incredibly cheap for a cymbal pad. This pad only has one zone, for a splash cymbal, this isn’t an issue as a splash cymbal is only used for that one sound. 

It is worth noting that it can’t be chocked though. If this is something you often do with your splashes these might not be the option for you. 

ProsCons
Great priceCan’t choke the sound
Looks like a splash cymbalIs a fairly loud pad

The Triggera splash pad is currently available for order on Thomann. Check it out below.

ATV aDrums Artist Series Splash Cymbals

ATV aDrums Artist Series Splash Cymbals

ATV is leading the way as far as the selection of cymbal pads available. Splashes are no exception to this. Currently, ATV has two different size splash pads available. A 10″ and 12″ version. 

The splash cymbals feature three zones, bow/ edge/ bell. ATV also paid particular attention to how the cymbals feel to try and replicate acoustic cymbals as closely as possible. 

The ATV splash pads are great but they are pricey. 

ProsCons
Looks greatExpensive
Natural feel pad
3 zone pad

The ATV splash pad are currently available on Thomann and Gear4music. Check out the links below.

Alternative pads that can be used as splashes

So as you can see the range of splash cymbal pads is currently very limited. Here are a couple of smaller cymbal pads that could be used as a splash but don’t have the full aesthetic appeal.

Roland CY-5 Dual Trigger Cymbal

There is no doubt about it, Roland makes great electronic drums. They don’t sell a proper “splash pad” but they do offer a smaller 12″ pad that can be used as one. 

Out of the alternative pads featured the CY-5 is the only pad that has two zones and choking capabilities. 

The Roland CY-5 pad is available from Thomann and Gear4music.

Millenium MPS-200 Mono Cymbal Pad

This offering from Thomann is a great option for a drummer on a budget. It is a single zone pad and is 12″ in size. Much like the Roland pad, it doesn’t look like a splash but is the right kind of size.

The Millenium pad is currently available at Thomann.

Digital Drums Electronic Cymbal Pad

This pad from Digital Drums is extremely similar to that of the Millenium pad but is 10″ rather than 12″. Another great option for drummers on a budget at only £24.99.

The Digital Drums Pads is currently available at Gear4music.

Our thoughts

It is great to see electronic splash cymbal pads coming to the market. It is still early days though and the choices are limited. My top pick would have to be the ATV splashes, they look great and have 3 zones. If you have the money, this is the one to get.

Hopefully, over the next few years, we will see more manufacturers introducing their own splash cymbal pads to the market. 

Low Volume Cymbals | What are the best ones for you?

low volume cymbals

Low volume cymbals are fast becoming a favourite amongst drummers looking for that natural cymbal feel whilst practising at lower volumes. It is easy to see why as cymbals have a unique and distinct feel that is hard to replicate with rubber pads. 

As low volume cymbals are still a fairly new concept, we are going to help guide you through what is currently available on the market and what you should be looking out for.

What are low volume cymbals?

Low volume cymbals give you the feel of full volume acoustic cymbals but at a reduced volume. These are ideal for drummers who are wanting to practice but aren’t able to make much noise. 

For example, if you live in a flat and you still want to get your practice in. Put on your mesh heads and low volume cymbals and away you go. I’m pretty sure the neighbours wouldn’t be happy if you were playing your full acoustic drum kit!

The only downside is that although low volume cymbals have the natural feel and response of cymbals, they don’t sound as nice as there full volume counterparts. 

How do low volume cymbals work?

Low volume cymbals achieve their reduced volume through two different methods.

The material they’re made from

 Traditionally cymbals are made from an alloy combining copper, tin and other trace metals. For example, B20 bronze is 80% copper, 20% tin.

Low volume cymbals often use a different selection of materials to achieve reduced volumes. The materials used vary by brand.

The unique holes in the cymbals

A distinctive feature of these cymbals is the unique holes that are in them. The holes are added to the cymbals to remove harsh frequencies and reduce the sustain of the cymbals. 

The amount and size of holes in these cymbals differ by manufacturer. On average though you can expect to see that many holes have been made as it is proven to be effective in reducing the volume of the cymbals.

low volume cymbal holes

What are the best low volume cymbals?

This is a challenging question as this will come down to your budget, personal taste and brand loyalty. 

There is also another factor to consider. Some brands focus purely on getting the lowest sound and sacrificing some sound quality, but other brands focus on getting a higher quality sound and sacrificing noise reduction. 

That being said here are our top picks from each scenario.

Zildjian L80 Cymbals

If you are looking for the best low volume cymbals that focus on noise reduction, the Zildjian L80 Cymbals are the choice for you.

Promising to reduce the volume by 80% with the natural cymbal feel Zildjian has done a great job. They are so quiet that the sound of the stick hitting the cymbal is louder than the sound of the cymbal Very impressive.

There is also a good selection of cymbal types available covering hi-hats, crashes, rides, splash and china cymbals. 

Agean R Low Volume Cymbals

If having that great cymbal sound with some noise reduction benefits is what you are after the Agean R Series cymbals are a great choice. 

They are made from B20 bronze giving them the cymbal sound you expect but with the holes in the cymbals to reduce the volume. 

There is also a great range of cymbals available with multiple styles of hi-hats, crashes, rides, splash and china cymbals. 

There are two things two keep in mind if you decide to purchase Agean R Series Cymbals.

  1. They are expensive. You will be pretty much paying full cymbal prices for these. If you are just using these for practising, it might not too realistic for you to spend this kind of money.
  2. They aren’t as easy to find and purchase. Because the Agean brand is smaller it does mean they can be more difficult to find online.

How do these cymbals compare?

If you are interested in a comparison of how these two cymbals sound when compared, here is a great video from drum-tec

What are the best budget low volume cymbals?

If you are wanting to use low volume cymbals for practising you are likely going to want to spend less money so you can spend it on your main kit. Luckily many great cheaper alternatives are coming to market. 

Millenium Still Series

Available from Thomann the Millenium Still Series is a great alternative on a lower budget. They offer up to 80% volume reduction without breaking the bank. You can buy a basic set including a hi-hat, two crashes and a ride and then expand down the line with splashes and crashes if you want to.

WHD Low Volume

Available from Gear4music the WHD cymbals are very similar to the Millenium offering but with a different finish. They have a nice contemporary nickel finish and still offer the up to 80% volume reduction.

Low volume cymbals vs electronic cymbals?

Apart from practising, the other reason you may want low volume cymbals is to use on your electric drum kit rather than pads. In the right situations this can be a real benefit. 

Here are some of the pros and cons of using low volume cymbal rather than electronic cymbal pads.

Pros

  • They feel like a real cymbal
  • They look better than rubber pads
  • More realistic sizes and styles when compared to rubber pads

Cons

  • Can’t change the sound at the touch of a button
  • You lose the ability of any pad making any sound
  • More complicated to get a good headphone mix between the electric drums and cymbals

Low volume cymbals and electronic cymbal pads are very hard to compare as they are both very different in what they are trying to achieve. If you mainly play at home and your main kit is your electronic one, adding low volume cymbals into the mix is probably worth a go.

Are you looking for cymbals perfect for smaller gigs? Check out the Sabian FRX cymbals.

Final thoughts

Low volume cymbals are a great way to get more out of your practice sessions. Cymbals have a unique feel and there is no way to properly replicate that without having one. These cymbals truly open the doors to more effective practice session no matter where you are. 

Hopefully in the next few years we will see more brands starting to compete and introducing their lines. 

The future of these types of cymbals is very exciting and we can’t wait to see what happens next.

Electronic Drum Kit China Cymbal Pads | Which is the best?

electronic drum kit china cymbal pads

Electronic drum kits are becoming more sophisticated and closer to acoustic drum kits every year. This is great news for drummers wanting to get in some practice at lower volumes. That being said, the selection of electronic drum kit china cymbal pads compared to traditional cymbals is lacking.

Luckily things are changing and some great electronic china cymbal pads are being released. Let’s have a look at some of the best ones currently available on the market.

Why would I want electronic drum kit china cymbal pads?

In short, you do not need pads to be shaped in a certain way to produce a certain sound. That is one of the beauties of electric drum kits. Any pad, no matter the shape, can make whatever noise you program.

This doesn’t take away the desire to have an electronic drum kit that looks like an acoustic one though. The ability to trigger acoustic drums accurately is now common but the cymbals have been neglected a bit. We have pulled together a collection of electronic drum kit china cymbal pads you can buy today.

Electronic drum kit china cymbal pads currently available

Triggera D14 14″ China Cymbal Pad

Triggera china cymbal pad

This is a great looking china pad that fulfils the visual requirements. The only issue you may have is with the size at just 14″. It is a one-zone pad, this isn’t an issue as acoustic chinas only really have one sound. Best of all, it is well priced. At the time of writing, you can pick this cymbal up from Thomann for just £56 ($75).

ATV aDrums Artist series 17″ “China” cymbal

ATV electric china cymbal pad

Now, this is a truly amazing looking china pad from ATV. At 17″ this comes the closest to a full-size acoustic china cymbal. These cymbals aren’t cheap though at around £400 ($545). We have also had issues trying to find suppliers with available stock.

Jobeky Low Volume “Real Feel” Electronic Dual Zone “China” Cymbal

Jobeky electric china cymbal

Technically this isn’t an electronic cymbal pad but we thought it was worth a mention. This is a hybrid of a low volume cymbal crossed with a triggering that can be plugged into your drum module. You get the real cymbal feel with the triggered sound. The main thing is that you will get the ping sound from the metal rather than the tap of a rubber cymbal pad. These cymbals also come in a range of finishes. You can see more on the Jobeky website.

Which electric china would we choose?

This all comes down to budget and taste, just like most things in drumming. Luckily the selection of electronic china cymbals covers all bases.

If you have a lower budget

Go for the Triggera china cymbal. The price can’t be beaten in the market currently.

If you have a higher budget

Go for the ATV china cymbal. It looks great and it is the closest china pad available to the real deal.

If you already have hybrid cymbals

Go for the Jobeky china. I love the Jobeky cymbals but the only thing that hesitates me is metal sound produced when hit. If you are trying to keep the volume down this could be an issue. Also, if you only have pads on your setup you might not want to bring hybrid cymbals into the equation. 

Final thoughts

It is great to see more innovation in the electronic drum kit cymbal space. Currently, the range of electronic china cymbals is still limited but we have high hopes for things progressing even further in the next couple of years. As more options become available we will make sure to update this page for you.

Drum Lessons Online | Benefits, Disadvantages, Free vs Paid

drum lessons online

Taking drum lessons online has become commonplace in the drumming community. In the digital age where people want things on demand, it is no surprise.

Why would you wait if you don’t have to?

But is it truly the best way to improve your drumming?

In this article, we are going to talk through the benefits and disadvantages of taking drum lessons online as well as the differences between free and paid lessons available online to you.

What are the benefits of using an online learning service?

So why are online lessons becoming so hugely popular. It surely must be for good reason. Lest start off with why you would want to take drum lessons online:

  1. Instant access – Once you have started your subscription you will have instant access to all the lessons available. You just need to find what you would like to learn first.
  2. Learning at a time that works for you – Unlike visiting a tutor you can access lessons at a time the suits you, not when a tutor can fit you in. Work odd hours in your job? Learn at a time that fits your needs.
  3. Watch lessons on any device – To access your lessons you don’t need a fancy pc. All you need is any device with Internet access and away you go.
  4. Learn from world-class tutors – Most of us have a drumming idol and it would have used to been impossible to learn from them. Now the majority of world-class drummers have lessons available online for you to access.
  5. Discover technique and methods your local drum teach may not know – You might have an extremely good local drum teacher but even there knowledge will have boundaries. You may have seen a technique online you would like to learn more about but your tutor may not know it. What do you do? For example the heel toe technique is becoming extremely popular but a lot old school drum tutors won’t know of it due to it still being fairly new.
  6. Cheaper than a local tutor – If you take lessons with a local tutor you could be paying between $25- $50 for a hour of tuition. That is more than the cost of you average online learning subscription.

You can see it is clear that there is plenty of reasons to take drum lessons online. Great content that you can access however you want at a time that fits your schedule for a small monthly fee. Where do I sign up?

So what are the disadvantages of taking drum lessons online?

So at this point you may be thinking that your local tutor isn’t needed and you should just drums learn online. For some people that may just be the case, for others not so. Here are some reasons you may still want to learn locally:

  1. Someone to give you feedback – If you learn something new you may practice it until you think you have it master but in reality it might not be quite there yet. A tutor can correct you on something you may be playing wrong or an issue with your technique.
  2. A logical learning path – Lessons online are often ordered or grouped in a particular why to make it easy for you to progress. If you have a tutor they may see how you are playing and see something logical you should work on next.
  3. Regular learning schedule – If you take lessons with a tutor it is more than likely that you will see them on a set schedule. For example once a week on a Saturday morning. If you need more of a push to imprve your playing this can really help.
  4. They can push you to try new things – A lot of drummers like to out themselves in a camp and stick to it. For example you may class yourselves as a metal drummer, you only want to play metal and that’s fine. Your tutor may push you to try something new from another genre that will add to your playing that you may have never even considered.

Even though we may be in the digital age there is still reason for having a tutor if you have the time and have enough money to be able to afford it.

Free vs Paid? Which drum lessons are better for you?

So you’ve done your research and you’ve decided you want to learn online. That’s great. It is now time to decided which route to go down. Free or paid?

If you are looking for free drum lessons there is one main source online for you to look at, YouTube. The main question is which channel on YouTube to learn from. This is where free lessons can become an issue. If something is free the majority of the time it is normally one of these 3 things:

  1. Poor quality – Making lessons to a high standard to a lot of equipment. At least a camera and recording equipment. Buy all of this or paying someone to do this for you is expensive. This is why a lot of lessons on YouTube aren’t of great quality.
  2. Not a great tutor – If you learn from a person on YouTube how do you know how good they are? Do they have experience? Are they producing regular content for you to learn from? It is often the case that if someone is releasing drum lessons for free they don’t want to take the risk in investing in a setting up a paid service, this would make me question their commitment to giving you lessons in the long run.
  3. Part of the lesson – You have found a great tutor with high-quality videos. Sweet! Now you have the common issue of previews to full lessons or an introduction to something to learn that you need to pay to learn fully. That is fine and to be expected as YouTube is a great way of generating traffic to a website to gain customers.

Paid lessons don’t have these issues above. This is down to having dedicated students subscribed to the learning service paying a monthly fee allowing them to invest in higher quality more frequent content. The more students they have the more high-quality diverse content they can create.

FREEPAID
High quality content
Regular content
Clearly explained lessons
Supportive community
Learn anytime
Logically organised
Monthly fee

So what’s our conclusion? Should you take drum lessons online?

From what we’ve seen it is clear that learning drums online has obvious advantages but there is still room for a traditional lessons with a tutor if you can afford it. Below are some recommendations for learning sources based on different monthly budgets.

  • 0$ – YouTube
  • $30 – Paid drum lessons online
  • $45 – Paid drum lessons online + 1 lesson with a tutor
  • $60 – Paid drum lessons online + 2 lessons with a tutor
  • $100+ – Multiple paid drum lessons online + lessons with a tutor

Everyone who plays drums has different budgets to dedicate to education. Playing drums is expensive before you have even invested a penny in learning them properly so it is easy to understand why so many people fall into the YouTube bracket.

Even though $30 per month at the entry level to drum education may seem like a lot it is actually only $1 per day which is less than the cost of a bottle of coke. How much do you value progressing is the question?

So where should you learn?

DRUMEO. If you are reading this article you have probably already heard of Drumeo in some shape or form. But that’s a good thing! Drumeo has the largest collection of drum lessons brought to you by a huge range of world class tutors.

MIKES LESSONS. Mike Johnston is one of those drummers that clearly loves to teach. You can see it in every lesson. He is very passionate and truly wants you to learn, it is very inspiring. If you want to learn how to groove and build up some new chops this is a great place to start.

DRUM AMBITION. If you are at the very start of your drumming journey this may be the place for you to start. Drum Ambition takes you from knowing nothing about drums to a solid foundation of playing with is clearly organised curriculum.

180 DRUMS. This platform takes a similar approach to Drumeo in its focus around a large selection of guest tutors. This is a good thing as 180 Drums brings you a great selection of drummers that aren’t currently available on Drumeo and is a fraction of the price.

SO MANY MORE. The available options for lessons online are increasing every year. As we come across more we will check them out and add them to this article.

We hope you have enjoyed this article and it has helped to give you some clarity around if you need to invest in some extra lessons. If this post has helped you share it with your friends, we really appreciate your help and support. If you sign up with your email below we’ll keep you up to date with all of our latest posts, lessons and reviews.