Best Drum Electronic Kits for Beginners

I’m often asked to recommend the best electronic drum kits for beginners. So here you go.

Back when it all began my 1st Electronic Drum Kit was made out of a Remo Practice Pad, a Cystal Mic and a Circuit board.

It was probably one of the 1st Electronic Drum Kits to appear on a stage. It lasted for 2 gigs with OMD until I hit smashed the mic to bits and everything went paired shaped. Then Roland, Yamaha, Alesis, Carlsberg and also Ddrum came along. They showed us how to do it and now make some of the best electronic drums available. Fortunately things have improved since the early 80’s. These days they are tough and reliable both for beginners and pro’s.

My Roland Hybrid Kit has played in front of massive crowds. It has spent years in and out of trucks, gigs, aeroplanes and flight cases and it still works as new.

So lets get on with it.

May the groove be with you – Mal Holmes.

1. Roland TD – 1K V – Drums Electronic Drum Kit

Roland TD – 1K V – Drums Electronic Drum Kit - malholmes.co.uk

Roland Electronic Drums Description

Roland’s V-Drums are the world’s most popular and probably the best electronic drums around today.

The TD – 1KV has 15 Onboard Drum Kits 

An acoustic drum kit needs to be set up to play a specific style of music, so you’re stuck with one type of sound. The TD-1K electronic kit offers you much more versatility.

You can play hard with a heavy Rock sound, then instantly change kits.

Every kit reacts just like the acoustic and electronic kits they emulate, giving you a huge range of variety in one compact, standalone instrument.

On Board Training

Whether you’re teaching yourself to play, studying regularly with an instructor, or simply want to keep your skills polished, the TD-1K has a wealth of enjoyable functions to encourage learning.

Think of this kit as your own live-in drum teacher and personal backing band, packed with tutorial features that develop technique, boost motivation, and help you get the most out of practice time.

You can use Coach mode to build and maintain speed, stamina, and accuracy, or play along with the onboard metronome to tighten up your timing. Get ready for your first band by jamming with the internal songs in the sound module, or connect a smartphone or music player via the Mix In jack and drum along with your favourite tunes. With the onboard recording function, you’ll get instant feedback of your progress as well as quickly capture and playback a new fill or creative groove.

Practice at Home with Headphones 

Stay Motivated with Onboard TuitionTraditional acoustic drums are extremely loud. Playing them at home is fun for you, but can be a problem for everyone else around! Quieter operation is a major benefit of electronic drums, and the Roland TD-1K is particularly quiet where it counts, thanks to the sound module’s headphone jack and the noise-reducing design of the tom/cymbal pads. The TD-1K reduces the volume of your drumming with the beater-less pedal design, meaning you won’t be annoying the neighbours. You can further reduce noise transfer to other rooms below with the optional NE-10 Noise Eater units that can be used under the kick and hi-hat pedals.

Features

  • Acclaimed V-Drums sound and performance in an entry-level set
  • Enjoy drumming in any musical style with 15 expressive drum kits
  • Supports essential acoustic drum techniques, including cymbal choke, advanced hi-hat playing, and more
  • Build playing skills with the onboard Coach function, metronome, and recorder
  • Practice along with onboard audio songs or your own tracks played from a smartphone or music player connected to the Mix In jack
  • Beater-less kick pedal provides low noise for playing without disturbing others, ideal for practicing at home
  • Space-saving, ergonomic design and stylish looks to suit any room in your home
  • Sturdy drum rack with quick and easy height adjustment for every drummer, from kids to adults
  • Many upgrade options for enhanced performance, including OP-TD1C for an additional crash cymbal, KT-10 or KD-9 for kick, and more
  • USB-MIDI for using the TD-1K with the DT-1 Drum Tutor, V-Drums Friend Jam series, and other popular computer music software
  • Intuitive user interface for easy operation
  • 15 kits – legendary Roland sound quality
  • 15 songs – with or without metronome
  • Quiet and compact thanks to cushioned rubber pads
  • Expandable and upgradable
  • Coach Function with 10 coach exercises to improve your drumming

Roland TD – 1K V – Drums Electronic Drum Kit – Amazon | Thomann | Gear4Music

2. Roland TD – 11K V – Drums Electronic Drum Kit

Roland TD-11K-V Electronic Drum Kit - malholmes.co.uk

The TD – 11 has 50 customisable Onboard Drum Kits 

The new TD-11, SuperNATURAL powered, entry-level, V-Drum’s sound engine brings a more natural and realistic drumming experience to the entry level.

Its affordability and easy operation expands the opportunity for drummers of all budgets and skill levels to use electronic drums for lessons, home practice, and live performances.

Mesh-Head V-Pad for Snare 

The PDX-8 mesh snare V-Pad features Roland’s amazing dual-triggering technology which is super accurate and even senses between the head and rim. It offers an expanded 10″ rim for more comfortable and quiet rim-shots.

For toms, the PD-8A durable 8.5″ rubber pad also offers super-accurate triggering and a time-tested design for years of reliable use.

Acclaimed V-Cymbals for Crash and Ride

With optimised weight-balance and sensitivity, the CY-12C for Crash provides a natural swinging motion and accurate triggering for consistent crash performance, including choke control. As a Ride cymbal, the CY-13R offers an enlarged bow area and a realistic playing feel, with accurate three-way triggering for edge, bow and bell.

Compact and Practical Hi-Hat Combination

The CY-5 cymbal pad for hi-hat features a 10″ playing zone and natural swing movement. It also provides separate bow and edge triggering. With the FD-8 Hi-Hat Controller, drummers can get realistic hi-hat sounds with smooth transitions between open and closed positions.

Natural-Feel Kick Pad

With new mechanics and a cloth-designed bass drum head, the KD-9 kick pad provides great feel, dynamic response, accurate triggering and solid playability even when using a double pedal. It’s also easy and quick to set up. (Please note: kick pedal sold separately)

Custom Stand for V-Compact V-Drums

Designed for the V-Compact series, the MDS-4V is the most space-efficient drum stand from Roland. In addition to its stylish and compact footprint, the MDS-4V features a metal centre-horizontal joint bar for improved stability and solidness during frequent set-ups and tear-downs.

Features

  • SuperNATURAL Sound Engine – ‘behaviour modelling’ for accurate, authentic reaction and the most true-to-life V-Drums ever created
  • 50 fully-customisable drum kits on board with 196 internal instruments to select from and tune/edit
  • Song player – play along to internal songs, play to your own tracks using the USB song player or connect an external device
  • Coach Mode – improve your timing and accuracy and get instant feedback on your progress

Roland TD-11K V – Drums Electronic Drum Kit – Amazon | Thomann | Gear4Music

3. Digital Drums 400 Compact Electronic Drum Kit

Digital Drums 400 Compact Electronic Drum Kit - malholmes.co.uk

The 400 Compact has 10 Onboard Drum Kits

The DD400 consists of 3 toms and a snare drum plus a crash, ride and hi-hat cymbals. It also includes hi-hat and kick drum controller pedals so you have everything you need to get going.

Compact and Convenient

The Gear4music DD400 is our most compact drum kit designed for use where space is at a premium. It’s perfect for bedrooms, uni halls or flats as it won’t take up too much room. The kit is also easily packed down when not in use and stored away. The frame is lightweight and easily moved to practice or lesson locations if needed.

Quiet and Responsive

The kick pedal controller is a lot quieter than a traditional drum pedal rebounding off a bass pad but gives a comparable action that allows the player to develop pedal skills. The headphone input means that it’s no problem to pratice early in the morning or late at night – just plug in and away you go without disturbing the neighbours.

Wide Range of Sounds

The Gear4music 400 kit has 10 pre-set kits programmed into the module so you can quickly find a sound you like from rock and pop through to jazz and house. Experiment with creating your own kits using the 108 individual drum and percussion sounds or play along with the 40 drum patterns of varying difficulty.

Connect and Expand

The DD400 has a full range of connectivity options which add a whole host of extra options for expanding and upgrading this kit. The stereo ouput allows you to connect the drum kit to a monitor or amplifier for extra volume when playing live, whilst the aux in means you can connect an MP3 player and drum along to your favourite tracks.

USB and MIDI connections can connect this kit to a computer for recording, composition or use as a MIDI controller. These connections can give you access to a whole host of tuition software and DAW functionality.

Features

400 Module

  • 108 Voices
  • 10 Preset Kits
  • 40 Patterns
  • 1 Demo Song
  • LED Display
  • Pattern/Kit/Voice/Click Indicators

Connectors

  • Trigger Input
  • 9V DC Power Jack
  • Phones
  • Aux in (stereo jack)
  • USB Port
  • MIDI Out Jack
  • Line Output (L/mono & R)

Digital Drums 400 Compact Drum Kit – Amazon | Gear4Music

4. Alesis DM Lite Electronic Drum Kit

Alesis DM Lite Electronic Drum Kit - malholmes.co.uk

The Alesis DM Lite has 10 Onboard Drum Kits

The Alesis DM Lite has all drum and cymbal pads mounted to the pre-assembled, height adjustable, 4 post rack making set-up quick and easy. With 200 sounds, a built in drum coach, play along patterns and exercises it’s a great tool for anyone wanting to learn or improve upon their skills.

Using the 1/4″ outputs, the DM Lite Kit can be connected to an amp or sound system for performance or the 1/8″ headphone output is ideal for quiet practice. An 1/8″ aux input is also included allowing you to connect your MP3 device and rock out to your favourite tracks. You can even connect via USB for integration with popular recording programs and virtual instruments.

On Board Training

The 200 drum and percussion sounds loaded onto the Alesis DM Lite make 10 ready to play pre set kits.

Inside the DM Lite module you’ll also find the built in coach feature, 30 play along tracks and metronome to help you perfect your skills.

The DM Lite Kit includes one snare pad and three toms. Three cymbal pads are also provided – hi-hat, crash and ride. When each pad or cymbal is hit the internal blue LED lights up adding an extra dimension to any performance. The pads also flash in response to the lessons and onboard patterns which is a valuable visual learning tool.

Instant Drum Kit

The DM Lite is quick and easy to set up so you can start playing almost instantly. The pre-assembled 4 post rack comes with all pads in place. Simply unfold the arms and use the quick release fittings to set the height to match your size and style – no tools required! The wiring snakes connects all of the pads, cymbals and pedals to the DM Lite module and drumsticks are included.

Included Drum Pedals

Two foot pedals are included with the Alesis DM Lite. The first is a high-hat open/closed momentary control pedal and the second is a velocity sensitive piezo controlled kick trigger pedal.

Features

  • Complete kit with pre-assembled rack has you playing in minutes
  • LED Illuminated drum and cymbal pads enhance built-in learning features
  • DM Lite drum module allows custom kit configurations and modifications
  • DM Lite drum module with built-in drum coach with play-along patterns and 30 songs
  • 10 ready-to-play classic and modern kits with over 200 drum and cymbal sounds
  • 1/8″ stereo aux input for jamming to your favorite tracks
  • USB/MIDI connection for use with audio recording software and virtual instruments
  • 1/4″ stereo outs connect to any sound system
  • 1/8″ headphone out for private practice
  • Includes drumsticks, all required cables, mounting hardware, and power supply

Alesis DM Lite Electronic Drum Kit – Amazon | Thomann | Gear4music

5. Yamaha DTX450K Electronic Drum Kit 

Yamaha DTX450K Electronic Drum Kit - malholmes.co.uk

The Yamaha DTX450K has 10 Onboard Drum Kits

The new Yamaha DTX450K Electronic Drum Kit provides unprecedented quality, flexibility and usability. Yamaha’s acclaimed acoustic drum heritage and leading music technology expertise deliver professional performance at a totally new price point. With its onboard training functions and high levels of connectivity, the DTX450K is designed to expand the drumming experience for a whole new generation of aspiring drummers.

On Board Training

Especially good as a learning tool for new or developing drummers the DTX450K has a host of onboard training functions.

Fun, engaging and effective warm-ups and games include.

“Groove Check”, helping perfect your timing with on-screen markers of early or late beats.

“Rhythm Gate”, where the drum kit silences out any off time beats alerting you instantly to any mistakes, “Groove Tracker”, which helps beginners pick up the beat.

“Fast Blast”, a new challenge to test the chops of even advanced players!

There’s also a spoken grading system to encourage you along your drumming path, all of which are easily operated using simple back-lit function buttons.

Playability and Feel

Using their knowledge and experience Yamaha have designed the DTX450K to meet the real needs of drummers and provide a natural response with solid durability and authentic stick rebound. The rubber surface prevents stick slippage making it easy to practice single, double and triple strokes.

Redesigned Module

With a completely new module, durable steel rack, and 7.5″ drum pads the small and compact DTX450K has been designed from scratch for the entry level market. The DTX450K’s overall size and the design of the toms provide a comfortable drumming experience for newer players, while the TP70S snare pad supports open and closed rimshots.

The KP65 kick pad plays quietly while giving a very natural feel. Add to this the large 10″ cymbals plus hi-hat and you have a drum kit that feels great, is fun to play and is a valuable practice tool. The dimensions of the DTX450K and the real bass drum pedal action are also designed so that the skills learned can be easily transferred onto an acoustic drum kit. But of course, the beauty of a digital drum kit for a beginner is that you can practice in silence until you’re ready to show off your skills!

Create Your Own Drum Kits

Boasting some of the highest quality sounds in its class, the DTX450K’s built-in sound module houses stereo recordings of real drums, cymbals and percussion that respond dynamically to your touch for true musical expression. Highlights include classic milestone sounds from the history of drumming including legendary drum tones from some of Yamaha’s most acclaimed acoustic drum kits.

Find Your Perfect Sound

The DTX450K comes with ten professional quality drum kits that are ready to play straight away. For those seeking extra creativity, draw from the selection of 169 sounds to create custom kits to match your own style. The DTX450K gives you the freedom to experiment with everything from heavy double bass kits to explosive dance kits and save your favourite ten in the memory slots for instant recall later.

Connect, Upgrade and Expand Your Kit

The USB connection allows you to control VSTi drum libraries and enjoy recording into DAW software such as Cubase. Yamaha’s Music Software Downloader also allows you to import new songs with new Apps due to be launched in 2013, designed to work alongside the DTX450K, so just as your skills are growing and you’re ready to progress further new interactive learning experiences will be available. There is also the option to add an additional crash cymbal pad when you’re ready for more of a challenge!

Perfect for Home Studio Use

A true breakthrough with Yamaha quality at this price point this DTX450K system is sure to become a firm favourite amongst beginners, drum tutors and schools. With a range of professional features, the DTX450K is also compelling as a practice kit for more advanced drummers or for musicians recording in home studios.

Features

  • Snare: TP70S 7.5 inch 3-zone pad
  • Tom: 7.5 inch pad
  • Floor Tom: 7.5 inch pad
  • Bass Drum: KP65 pad with FP6110A footpedal
  • Hi-Hat: 10 inch pad
  • Hi-Hat Controlling Unit: HH65 controller (full open/ full closed / half open / foot splash)
  • Crash Cymbal: 10 inch pad
  • Ride Cymbal: 10 inch pad

Tone Generator Voices

  • Total: 169
  • Snares: 23
  • Kicks: 21
  • Toms: 36
  • Cymbals: 31
  • Hi-Hats: 16
  • Percussion: 42
  • Drum Kits: 10 (all of which may be edited and overwritten)

Yamaha DTX450X Electronic Drum Kit – Thomann | Gear4music

6. Alesis Nitro Electronic Drum Kit

Alesis Nitro 8-Piece Electronic Drum Kit - malholmes.co.uk

The Alesis Nitro has 24 Onboard Drum Kits

The Alesis Nitro kit not only looks and sounds good but provides added connectivity for a range of different applications. The kit features an AUX input that allows you to play music via CDs, MP3s and other devices that are directly from your jack output. This is ideal for modern day players as you can play along to your favourite songs or practice with your own band’s music. A USB/MIDI connection is also incorporated for use with virtual instruments and recording software, allowing you to record professional drum-tracks into your DAW or manipulate the sounds already found within the kit. The kit also features a standard headphone output so you can play in private.

On Board Training

The Nitro kit features a built-in sequencer, metronome and performance recorder for added versatility.

This allows you to record along to a regimented rhythm and also record your drum sessions while you play for later use. The kit also features 60 built-in play-along tracks to sharpen your skills when it comes to performing with other instruments.

There are also stereo line outputs to let you connect the kit to any PA or sound-system.

High Response Drum Pads

At the centre of the Alesis Nitro kit are quality sounding, good feeling drums and cymbals. The 8’’ drums provide pads large enough to have an easy striking surface, with the rubber top material giving a dynamic, natural response. The 10’’ cymbals offer a similarly active feel, with each section of the pad giving a realistic recreation of the sound caused by an acoustic. The cymbals’ height is fully adjustable thanks to the rack design, meaning you can the kit fully tailored to your preference. The kick drum is attached to a pedal that gives a comfortable, realistic response.

Included Accessories

This exclusive Gear4music package contains all you need to begin your drumming journey. The SubZero SZ-7080 Monitoring Headphones have been specially designed for studio and recording situations and as a result, offer high quality sound and a large frequency range. With a 3m cable, an included 6.3mm adapter and a comfortable, non slip headband, these are perfect for all studio situations. The pack also comes with a pair of Gear4music 5A drumsticks that have a comfortable feel and wooden tip to give a more realistic action on your kit.

Features

Sequencer

  • Normal Mode: 80 Songs
  • Learning Mode: 20 beats, 12 rhythms, 10 patterns
  • Resolution: 120 ticks per quarter note
  • Maximum Note Storage: approximately 1600 notes

Drum Kit Variations

  • Preset Kits: 24
  • User Kits: 16
  • MIDI Kits: 11
  • Hi-Hat Combinations: 7
  • Total Drum Sounds: 385
  • Effects: Reverb, 3-Band Equalizer

Sequencer

  • Normal Mode: 80 Songs
  • Learning Mode: Learning Mode: 20 beats, 12 rhythms, 10 patterns
  • Resolution: 120 ticks per quarter note
  • Maximum Note Storage: approximately 1600 notes

Connectivity

  • Auxiliary Input: 1
  • Headphone Input: 1
  • Output: 1/4’’ Stereo, Left and Right
  • MIDI Input: 1
  • MIDI Output: 1
  • USB Port: 1

Alesis Nitro Electronic Drum Kit – Amazon | Thomann | Gear4Music

7. Carlsbro CSD130 Digital Drum Kit

The Carlsbro CSD130 has 20 Onboard Drum Kits

The Carlsbro CSD130 Digital Drum Kit is the ideal solution for drummers who desire an electronic drum kit that is portable, durable and retains a classic acoustic kit sound. Able to replicate the same presense as an acoustic kit, the Carlsbro CSD130 Digital Drum Kit can be folded away to achieve an ultra portable size, making it ideal for the travelling musician or student.

The kit features 2″ reserve bass kick pads that perfectly replicate a realistic beater swinging action. Also featured is a 7.5 snare pad that is dual zoned to allow for standard snare and rimshot sounds.

The innovative commander sound module is home to 250 high quality sounds with preset drum kits, 10 user defined kits and 20 demo songs for the user to play along with. The featured sound module enables the player to record and playback their drumming which is great for practice and analysing technique. Also great for practice is the inbuilt metronome that allows the player to play along to user defined tempos that test consistency and timing.

Features

  • Commander 150 Sound Module
  • Digitron display
  • 250 high quality percussion voices
  • 20 preset drum kits
  • 10 user defined drums kits
  • 20 demo songs
  • Aux in jack, Line output, Headphone output
  • USB interface (USB to device), MIDI IN/OUT
  • Recording and playback facility
  • Adjustable sensitivity
  • Adjustable crosstalk
  • Trigger curve settings, Metronome, reverb

Specifications

  • Commander 150 Sound Module
  •  Bass pad with bass kick pedal
  •  Dual-zone Snare pad
  •  Tom pads – Single-zone
  •  Hi-hat cymbal pad – Single-zone
  •  Crash cymbal pad with choke – Single-zone
  •  Ride cymbal pad with choke – Single-zone
  • Hi-hat controller pedal
  • Ultra compact, portable 3-legged drum rack with all mounting hardware and invisible cabling

Carlsbro CSD130 Digital Drum Kit – Amazon Gear4music

8.Ddrum BETA Electronic Drum Kit

Ddrum BETA Electronic Drum Kit - malholmes.co.uk

The Ddrum BETA has 32 Onboard Drum Kits

First of all, at ddrum their foundation is innovation. Ddrum continually endeavour, to provide drummers with tools designed to offer the best in performance & flexibility. We’ve been the link between drummers and technology for over 30 years, with “industry standard” triggers, electronic drums and modules. For the past 10 years, we turned our attention to acoustic drums, launching exciting new products that blur the lines between standard and custom features. Ddrum kits appeals to a wide range of players and artists, Vinnie Paul (Pant era and ), Derek Wright (Adele) and the Legendary Carmine Apace all choose ddrum.

Ddrum Beta Electronic Drum Kit. The all new ddrum beta, everything you need to start your journey in the world of electronic percussion! Working backward from our more advanced e-kits, we conceived the DDBeta to be the first step in a drummer’s journey. If it is simply your first electronic kit, or your first drum kit, we conceived it to be easy to use. The kit features a streamlined module which contains 100 usable drum kit sounds. You will find these and more, in the 32 pre-set kits that are standard on the DDBETA. The DDBETA offers compact size, perfect for bedrooms and small apartments.

Responsive, single-zone drum pads. Dynamic single-zone cymbals with choke feature. All at a very attractive price. DDBeta, the first word in electronic percussion. Features4- 8inch Single zone Drum pads3-12inch Cymbal padsChokable-Hi hat controllerBass drum foot controllerSet of HeadphonesModule Features – 10 1/4 inputs – MIDI OUT – LINE IN – Headphone output32 high sound quality Preset drum kitsMetronomeReverbCompact rack system

Features

32 Pre-set kits, with over 100 Drum sounds
4 x 8″ Single zone Drum pads.
3 x 12″ Chokable Cymbal Pad.
Built in Metronome and Reverb.
Foot controllers for both Hi-hat and Bass Drum.

Box Contains

1 x Ddrum Rack.
4 x Single Zone Drum Pads.
1 x Ddrum Beta Brain.
3 x 12″ Checkable Cymbal Pads.
1 x Headphone Set.
2 x Foot Controller.
1 x UK Power Supply.

Ddrum BETA Electronic Drum Kit – Amazon | Thomann