Which electronic drum set is right for me?
It’s the big day. You’re ready to sprint down to the Drum Palace, wad of crisp tenners burning a hole in your wallet. Before you make a knee-jerk choice, allow us to gently guide you to the kit that’s right for your needs.
I have a budget. Which kits can I get?
There are kits within each price range that are perfect for learning, practise and even gigging. It stands to reason that the more you pay, the more features you’ll get, ultimately offering more drum sounds, kits, functions and more.
But whatever your budget, there’s an electronic drum set for every level of ability.
Roland HD-3 V-Drums
Drums for beginners (£500-£1000)
In this price range, you’ll find the perfect electronic drum kit for a beginner or for a drummer who already plays but needs a cost-effective kit for practise.
Roland HD-3 V-Drums Lite
This kit proves that great things come in small packages. It’s aimed at beginners and learners yet shares some of the same technology and expertise found in top of the range V-Drums kits.
- Compact and affordable, the Roland HD-3 V-Drums Lite kit is perfect for beginners, studios and schools, or anyone with limited space or budget
- It’s low noise – bash away without annoying the neighbours. The innovative beaterless pedal feature even tackles the irritation of noise from the kick drum, so it’s perfect for use in flats or bedrooms where a noisy kick drum coming through the ceiling might sour neighbourly relations
- Containing 20 super-playable drum kits for many different styles of music and drumming. From rock to Latin or dance, the HD-3 has it covered.
- The snare features Roland’s acclaimed mesh-head technology which produces an authentic acoustic drum response and is also quiet when struck. It can even be tension adjusted, just like an acoustic drum head for accurate feel and rebound
- The built-in metronome (click) is perfect for developing your timing and the tempo can be adjusted
- Height adjustable pads makes the HD-3 perfect for kids too
Also in the price bracket is the Roland TD-4KP V-Drums Portable kit. This kit is ideal for the gigging drummer or drummers needing a compact and portable drum kit.
Up a level: Roland V-Drums TD-11K and TD-11KV (£1000-£1400)
The bigger brothers of the entry level range are the Roland TD-11 series kits. These are larger than the HD-3, but still affordable. They’re the ideal drum kits for practice, recording, playing along to music and live performance. If you’re looking for a V-Drums kit that can progress as your ability grows, this is the one to go for.
The TD-11K features rubber tom pads and a mesh-head snare drum and still comes in under £1000, and uses the same TD-11 module and stand, but has tension adjustable mesh-head pads for the snare and toms, with bigger crash and ride cymbals too.
- Both models feature Roland’s new SuperNATURAL sound engine, which means these V-Drums kits don’t just sound like authentic acoustic drums, they feel and respond like them as well
- More kits and more sounds inside. Established drummers need a larger variety of sounds. The TD-11 series has 50 drum kits and 190 sounds inside, all of which can be edited and adjusted to make your own sound and drum kits
- The built-in coach and metronome helps you to improve. Not only does it make practice a lot more entertaining, it gives you a measure so you can track your improvements
- Professionally recorded backing tracks are perfect for jamming along to. But you can play your favourite WAV or MP3 files using the USB song player, and even slow them down or speed them up and loop the sections you want to nail
- Roland Wireless Connect lets you jam via your iPhone by using a USB WIFI key that wirelessly transmits the audio and data between your TD-11 and iPhone. You can then post your best scores to the worldwide leader board and brag to your friends on Twitter
The Roland TD-11K V-Drums
Going deeper: Professional V-Drums kits (£1500 Upwards)
In this price category, you’ll find kits with professional features designed for live use and recording. These are the go-to instruments for the gigging and semi-professional to professional drummers.
The Roland TD-15 series is for established drummers. It’s perfect for drummers who gig, teach and record, or the acoustic drummer who wants a kit packed with a large choice of drum sounds and advanced functions. The TD-15 module has a number of features over the TD-11 module, while the TD-15 series also benefits from a larger drum stand offering a familiar set-up for acoustic drummers. The TD-15K kit shares the same cymbals and compact pads of the TD-11KV kit, offering the budget-conscious the full-fat TD-15 experience.
This kit uses the same TD-15 module as its younger sibling but has larger pads all round with the hi-hat mounted on a traditional acoustic hi-hat stand. For drummers who play an acoustic kit, this makes a difference to playability and technique. This is also the first kit in the V-Drums for which you will need a hi-hat stand (purchased separately).
The TD-30 series is the ultimate electronic drum kit. Offering expressive and dynamic response and a host of advanced features perfectly suited to live and recording work, this is the choice of the pro- drummer looking for a kit that sounds, responds, feels and behaves like an acoustic kit.
Looking for the ultimate electronic drumming experience? Then look no further than the TD-30K Special Edition and TD-30KV kits. Simply put, these instruments are what every drummer would go for if they could. These sets have the footprint and presence of an acoustic kit, but all the advantages of an electronic kit combined with the ultimate TD-30 expressiveness.