OK, so it’s time to make that big purchase! Your first acoustic drum kit. This is a BIG decision and BIG purchase so please take the time to read some of the supporting information on this web site. At the very least have a look at this article discussing acoustic vs electronic drums. Also have a look at this article discussing acoustic drums in a bit more detail.
Now, bear in mind that at beginner level you can buy ‘complete’ drum kits – i.e. they come with everything you need. As you progress up the price range you might find you have to buy components separately. So watch out and always check you’re getting:
- Drum shell pack (normally bass drum & 3 toms)
- Snare drum
- Bass drum pedal
- Drum stool (throne)
Ready to go for it? Here goes…
Entry Level Acoustic Drum Kits
This is a stunning kit for only around £300. This is about as cheap as drum kits get so don’t expect the world but a great starter set and you can always upgrade components as you go! This kit only comes with one cymbal so bear that in mind.
Another stunning entry-level drum kit around £430 for the complete package. Again, only one cymbal but you can always add more later down the line. Lovely kit for the money.
Mid Range Acoustic Drum Kits
This is a beautiful 5 piece kit with Paiste cymbals. Everything seems to be included apart from a stool so you’ll need to buy that separately. Also not entirely clear whether it comes with a bass drum pedal so check with the seller. At around £530 this is a really lovely kit at a very reasonable price.
Pearl Export is one of the most famous and popular mid-range drum brands on the planet. Great drums, complete with cymbals and pretty much everything you need to get started. This kit comes in around the £700 mark.
High End Acoustic Drum Kit (Individual Components)
Been working hard? Got deep pockets? Now you’re getting in to serious professional-level drum kits. At this level you normally need to buy everything separately (check with the seller). So around £1,200 is only for the bass drum and 3 toms. Your full shopping list for a pro-level kit will set you back around £2,715… but you will have a truly stunning drum kit!
If you’re going to have high-end drums then you’ll also want high-end cymbals. Decent cymbals can make a huge difference to the overall sound of a drum kit and these Zildjians are probably some of the most popular pro-level cymbals on the planet. If you want cymbals that sound amazing this is a good starting point around £600 for a complete set.
You can spend a LOT of money on snare drums so we’ll keep it real. At around £370 this is a decent pro-level snare drum.
You’ll need some hardware to hang your drums off! Pearl hardware is great (I’m also a fan of Yamaha hardware). This hardware pack includes 2 cymbal stands, a hi-hat stand (with clutch), snare drum stand and bass drum pedal. All high quality double-braced stands around the £280 mark.
If you want the kit configuration shown in the picture above you’ll need an extra boom cymbal stand… so here you go. Around £50 is a fairly typical price for a decent cymbal stand.
Tom holders or ‘tom arms’ are for attaching your mounted toms on to stands or a bass drum. You’ll need 2 of these for the above configuration and they come in around £35 each.
You also need a way of attaching the tom arms on to cymbal stands. This adapter is what you would generally use. Around £25 each and you’ll need 2 of them.
You need to sit on something and this lovely double-braced stool should do the job perfectly. At around £75 this is a fairly typical price for a pro-level throne.
Well you need some drum sticks and these Vic Firth’s are the industry standard. 5A are a comfortable starter-size for most people. Decent drum sticks are normally around £10 a pair.
So there you go! This information is only intended as a guide so please double check with sellers that everything is as expected. You’ve got a range of options from £300 to nearly £3,000 for an acoustic drum kit. Of course perhaps an electronic kit would be more to your liking?