Acoustic vs Electric Drum Kits

Whether you are a beginner, or a drummer looking to update their kit you may be unsure between the range options. Electric drum kits have recently saturated the market, making your decision that much harder. We are here to help weigh up the options for you. Keep reading to find out the benefits and disadvantages of acoustic vs electric drum kits.

Acoustic Drum Kits

Drums are some of the world’s oldest known musical instruments, dating all the way back to 5500 BC. Although many years have passed, it wasn’t until the 1890’s that bass drums and cymbals were incorporated into performances to create a drum kit. It wasn’t until the 1920’s where the first drum kit began selling as a set by Ludwig.
 
You may be tossing up between both the acoustic and electric options. Keep reading below to find some of the pros and cons of the acoustic drum kit.

Pros

If you are into high volume and high energy playing a acoustic drum kit is perfect for you. The acoustic kit will let you thrash and get lost in the music as much as you want to.
 
Acoustic kits are responsive to the touch and feel of the drummer. If you want it to be loud, put more energy into playing and loud it will be. The same applies to soft and quiet playing. Learning this is a great technique to have and will help drummers when they change from kit to kit.
 
After playing for a while drummers will get a knowledge on tuning, and the maintenance of the kit. This is another skill that is very important to have, knowledge you can use on all future kits you may have.
 
Acoustic drum kits offer adaptability. You can change your techniques, the sound of playing, your EQ and external cymbals, etc. with ease.

Cons

With acoustic kits, there is no button to turn down the volume. This can be an issue if you have neighbours close by, or living with family members/roommates. Although learning to play quietly is a fantastic technique to have, being able to play loud is just as necessary.
 
On average, acoustic drum kits take up a lot of space. If you are living in a smaller unit, or if there isn’t a spare room in your house the size of an acoustic kit might be an issue. Even if it’s not set up all the time, storage for a large kit is difficult.
 
Acoustic drum kits are important for the development of drumming techniques, it is difficult to control sound early on. This can be quite discouraging for those who are learning to play. However, with practice skills of sound improve.
 
Acoustic drum kits are not always an all in one. When buying hardware and cymbals, the cost of the kit quickly adds up.

Electric Drum Kits

Electric drums were first created in the early 1970’s by drummer Graeme Edge and Professor Brian Gloves. These electric drums were a success, and used for the song “Procession” by The Moody Blues.
 
Electronic drums weren’t released until 1976, by Pollard industries. Although they had the attention of high-profile drummers, the drum kit was a financial failure for the company. In 1978 Simmons picked up were Pollards left off. Simmons created many electronic drum kits, this grew attention from brands that we all know today: Roland, Yamaha and Pearl.
 
Nowadays, electric drum kits have saturated the market, keep reading to find out the pros and cons.

Pros

Electric drum kits can come in all shapes and sizes. However as these are an all-in one the cost for the kit is usually cheaper.
 
If the volume level of drums put you off, or worries you if you have neighbours (who love to complain) the electric kit is your best choice. Plug in your headphones and drum away without a worry in the world.
 
If you don’t know your way around tuning an acoustic kit, not to worry. Electric drum kits requires no tuning. Spend more time learning new songs and practicing your techniques instead.
 
Electric kits are often smaller in size, lighter and far more portable than acoustic kits. If size and portability is an issue for yourself, beginner kits will be the perfect addition to your home.

Cons

Electric drum kits aren’t as responsive to your touch and feel, like acoustic kits are. This can encourage bad habits of drumming, and make it difficult when transitioning to acoustic kits in the future. The techniques you learn as a beginner will stay with you forever.
 
Depending on the kit you choose, you may have limited features. Often electric kits only offer a handful of presets, and offer no control over samples/EQ.
 

Although not having to spend time tuning/maintaining your acoustic kit can be a bonus, it is also a negative. Learning about your drum kit and ways to maintain it gives you knowledge that you will use forever. Electric kits do not offer the chance to learn about this.

So what do we suggest? Ultimately the choice is up to you, everyone will have features that have higher importance. From a developmental perspective acoustic drum kits would be our top choice. Acoustic drum kits encourage proper techniques and practices, and a broader knowledge on drums. However, we completely understand how noise, sound and price can be an issue. If this is the case for yourself, electric drums are a fantastic alternative.

If you have your mind made up find a store near you here to start renting today!

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