Buying a drum set for a teenager means you’re a brave person, but if your teen really wants to learn to be a drummer, what else can you do? If you’re a non-musician and know nothing about drums or are simply interested in getting your teen their first drum set, you’ve come to the right place. The thing is, when drummers know what they’re doing, they can make great music that anyone can enjoy, but there are so many different types of drums available these days, it can be confusing to know which to purchase. Below we’ll discuss how to identify the best drum set for your teenager and detail 16 of the best drum sets for teenage beginners.
What to Look for in a Drum Set
Drum sets come in many designs, and you’ll likely want to start with an acoustic drum set because the electronic drums are a little more complicated and a lot more expensive. For starters, make sure the set you purchase has the following five items:
- Snare drum. Snare drums have sharp, loud sounds and are the centerpiece of most drum sets. Keep in mind that to play snare drums, you’ll need drum sticks.
- Bass drum. Also called a kick drum, this drum sits on the floor and is the largest drum in the set. You’ll be using a kick pedal to play the bass drum.
- Tom drums. Also called tom-toms, these drums add a little kick to any musical piece you play. They can also be called booming drums, and they come in two types: a rack tom and a floor tom.
- Cymbals. Cymbals are made out of metal and help add a loud accent when you play. There are several different types of cymbals, the most common being ride cymbals, hi-hat cymbals, and crash cymbals.
- Throne. A drum throne is adjustable and used to allow drummers to sit down while they’re playing.
Naturally, an acoustic drum kit can contain more than these five items, but if you’re purchasing a set for someone who is just beginning to play, it’s best to stick with something simple and basic. They can always add more pieces to the drum set later on as they improve their skills. The truth is, these five pieces are enough to teach them how to play the drums, so these are the only things they actually need at this point.
Now let’s take a look at 16 of the best drum sets for teenagers and/or beginners:
When it comes to the best drum kits, this set is found on numerous lists, and there’s little wonder why. It is available in colors such as blue, black, white, and dark red, and it comes with everything you need to start playing immediately. This includes a set of drum sticks and a drum stick bag. It even has stands for all of this equipment that are adjustable, which means you can easily set them up at a height that will keep you comfortable while you’re playing. Best of all, the Pearl drum set is a high-quality set made out of sturdy parts that are built to last for a very long time.
With real wood shells and top-notch steel hardware, this is a great beginner drum set because it fits teens of all sizes. The pieces are easy to assemble, and it even comes with a high-gloss finish for a great look. You can customize the set by placing the pieces in a different order if you like, and the only downside is that the cymbals are good for learning but won’t be the best cymbals once you start playing gigs. It even has a full-sized bass drum, which a lot of beginning drum sets do not offer. Once your skills improve, simply buy yourself another set of cymbals and you’re all set to go.
You can’t go wrong with this set because it is made by a leader of top-quality drums – Ludwig. Many experts consider it the best beginner drum set because it produces a great sound, is portable enough to carry from one location to another, and provides very good value for the money you’ll spend. It also has a very high customer satisfaction rate, with a full 99% of all reviewers on Amazon giving the drums either 4 or 5 stars. The kit also has everything you need to start playing as soon as you get everything out of the box, which makes it perfect if you’re buying them for a birthday or Christmas gift for someone.
The Ludwig Breakbeats drum set sounds great in part because it is made with 7-ply hardwood, not to mention the fact that it’s nice and compact, meaning it’s the perfect drum set for people who don’t have a lot of room in their home. Some experts recommend getting separate cymbals and cymbals stands because the ones included with the kit are not perfect, but this is still a great drum set for beginners who are just starting to hone their skills. You can’t beat the Ludwig name when it comes to drums, and the Breakbeats set is a great drum set for a beginning drummer of any age.
If you’re looking for a drum set that sounds like it’s well above its price point, this one should definitely be considered. In fact, when it comes to beginning drum sets, this one has a better quality than many of the others, and it produces a sound that is usually reserved for sets that are much more expensive. It comes in both Aqua Blue and Satin Blonde (which is a little more expensive), and the full rich sound makes it perfect when you’re ready to segue into playing real gigs. Many beginner kits have to be replaced shortly after you purchase them, but this one will accommodate you for many years to come.
For the price you’ll pay for this drum set, you’ll get a lot of perks. These include top-notch Gibraltar hardware, eight-ply mahogany shells that both look good and last a long time, engraved finishes to give the drums a special touch, and a compact design that makes it super-easy to transport them from one gig to another. They produce a warm, classic sound and look spectacular, and all of these things together will do a great job of keeping your teens at the drum set practicing to become even better. It is a great option for people who want to keep the set long enough to become an intermediate player.
To some people, this set looks like a toy drum set, but don’t make the mistake of believing this is true. This is a top-notch drum set made for kids 2.5 feet to 5 feet tall, and it consists of three drums and a cymbal, which makes it perfect for kids of all ages because when it comes to kids’ drum sets, this is one of the best. The bass drum is secured by six lugs on each side of the head, which both provides some stability and results in a great sound. It even comes with its own throne and a set of drum sticks. This means you can take it out of the box and start playing it right away.
These acoustic drums are made for kids aged 3-12 and are available in colors such as red, black, silver, purple, and green, among others. The drums are made out of solid poplar wood and hardware that is top-notch chrome and therefore made to last. You even get a throne with adjustable heights, cymbals made out of real brass, and even a hi-hat cymbal, among other perks. You also get a crash cymbal, a well-made foot pedal, and your own set of sticks so that you can start playing as soon as you take everything out of the box.
This drum set is not only high in quality, but it’s also a very attractive set, which means your teens will be anxious to practice every day. It produces a nice pleasant tone and is actually a full-sized kit, which means it can be used by both teens and adults. The hardware is made out of real metal and therefore keeps the drums together for many years to come, and you get both a crash cymbal and a hi-hat cymbal to use. The only downside is that those looking for a compact size drum kit (or one for small children) might be better off with a beginner drum kit geared towards younger children, as those children’s drum sets can tend to be smaller and lighter, taking up less floor space than a full-sized kit like this.
This drum set is the best option for people who are just beginning but who know that they’re going to stick with drumming for a very long time. It is a bit pricey but each piece is high in quality and built to last. It is not a complete kit but consists of a snare drum, bass drum, and tom-toms in three different sizes. This means you’ll have to purchase your cymbals and accessories separately. Some of its many perks include a lifetime warranty and a very versatile tonal range. Even the stock pedals it comes with are of excellent high quality, and this is one drum set that is the real deal and built to last a lifetime.
Perfect for people on a budget, this drum set has everything you need to start playing immediately, including a bass drum, snare, two tom-toms, a floor tom, and both hi-hat and crash cymbals. You can choose from a total of seven colors, and you even get a set of sticks and a cymbal stand to complete the ensemble. This set comes with an adjustable height throne and double-braced stands that are extra sturdy, and it even comes with a chain-drive bass drum pedal. The only downside is the overall quality of the cymbals, but you can always buy additional ones later on when you’re ready.
Available in four different colors, this drum set is made for ages 3-10 and comes with a bass drum, snare, floor tom, mounted toms, and both crash and hi-hat cymbals. The pieces are made out of solid wood and have an attractive high-gloss finish, and it produces a loud and very clean sound. There is some assembly required, but it comes with a user manual that makes it super-easy to put together. It is an attractive set of drums and sized perfectly for kids, but it is also a quality set that should last for a very long time. The chain-driven pedals also mean you can bang away and not worry about breakage.
This complete drum set comes with drum sticks and a DVD that helps you put it together quickly and easily. You get both hi-hat and crash cymbals, and the drum heads produce an awesome sound that will be appreciated by both beginners and more experienced drummers. It is made from hardwood and is therefore very durable and sturdy, and its laminate finish gives the drums a unique and eye-catching look. Nevertheless, it’s the overall quality of the drums that stands out the most. Even though it’s made for kids, this is one drum set that should last for many years to come.
Available in red, blue, and black, this is a very basic compact kit that comes with two toms, a bass drum, cymbal, and throne, as well as drum sticks that allow you to start playing as soon as you take everything out of the box. It is also very affordable and therefore a good option for kids who may or may not play for very long. When it comes to very basic junior drum kits, this is definitely one to consider because the pieces are well-built but inexpensive as well. With Best Choice drum sets, you get quality without having to break the bank to get it.
Yamaha is a great brand of drums, and this junior kit is no different. It is very reasonably priced and comes with everything beginning drummers need to learn how to play. A new drummer will find this set a perfect learning set but they can also keep it as they improve their skills down the road. The drums produce a very full, warm sound, and the available colors offer something for everyone. This drum set is officially a shell pack, even though your average music store often sells it with cymbals and all of the hardware you need to start playing it as soon as you take it out of the box.
This 4-piece set is perfect for small and young drummers, and it is available in four different colors that “sparkle.” It does not come with hardware or cymbals, but you can add these easily and cheaply. The drums produce a very full sound that is perfect for all genres of music. It is the perfect beginner kit because it is lightweight and comes with enough pieces to start learning the drums immediately. Its only downside is the fact that some people find the bass drum riser a little challenging to put together, but this set is still a great way to learn the drums when you’re young.
Acoustic Drums vs. an Electronic Drum Set: A Buying Guide
When you have a beginner drummer in your home, you’ll naturally wonder if you should buy a standard acoustic set or one of the various electronic drum kits on the market. The bottom line is, there are advantages and disadvantages to both types of drums, and it’s always a good idea to review them thoroughly so that you can determine which set is right for you. Below are some of the features included in these sets that you might want to consider before making a final decision.
The first thing to keep in mind is that electronic drums have the ability to make different sounds, so the technology is a little more advanced than with the acoustic sets. With an acoustic set, you get one sound, while electric drums produce more than one sound. They also allow for a little variety you don’t get with acoustic sets, such as the ability to record yourself and to play along with a few pre-recorded songs, which can expand your talent.
As you can imagine, the price of an acoustic drum set is going to be different than the electronic sets, with the latter usually costing $1,000 or more. If you’re looking at various junior drum sets and you’re on a tight budget, this is important to keep in mind. Of course, both sets offer quality drums as long as the brand is reputable, but if your number-one concern is price, it’s much more likely you’ll find an inexpensive set if you stick with the acoustic type.
- Overall Sound
Electric drums have been around since the 1970s, but the sound quality is much better now than it was back then. This is good news because their original sound wasn’t all that good; in fact, some of them sounded like the drummer was beating on tin cans. Today, this is one musical instrument that has a nice full sound that complements the rest of the band members very well. While some musicians claim that electric drums will never sound like the real thing, many others claim the opposite.
- Overall Feel
By “feel,” we mean what the drums feel like when they’re being played. Playing the drums shouldn’t involve a lot of effort, and many drummers claim that they can feel the vibrations a lot better when the drums are electronic. Nevertheless, it’s good to keep in mind that when it comes to things such as cymbal swells and ghost notes, acoustic drums tend to sound a little better. This is why electric drums aren’t often used in certain types of music.
It’s true that drummers love playing loud and in fact, this is one band member you can’t do without because they are the ones that keep the beat and tempo going in the right direction. Nevertheless, if you live in an area that is highly populated, you might want to choose electronic sets because you can adjust the volume and keep it low so as not to annoy your neighbors. If you live out in the middle of nowhere, this won’t matter, but this is one feature to keep in mind when choosing your drums.
For young players and beginners, some of these things will matter and others will not, but it’s good to take a look at all of them so you can decide for yourself which drum set is right for your family in the end.
When you have a family member who is a musical kid in their tween or teen years who wants to play drums, you have a lot of decisions to make, as drumming lessons and equipment do require a significant investment. While the price range might seem like the most important factor, there are numerous other things to consider before you spend your hard-earned money on a set of drums that may quickly be abandoned after a season or semester. Between the aforementioned top picks we’ve reviewed, and with a good understanding of your budget, your teen’s dedication to drumming, and the space you have allotted for the set, you should be able to identify the best drum set for your teenager today and enable your teen to begin their musical pursuits with some independent practice, extracurricular drumming lessons, or participation in their school’s band to kick off their drum knowledge.