A drummer is as good as his kit. You might be a kick-ass drummer but if your kit is not as superb, you might not enjoy your sessions. There is a drum kit for every need and every individual depending on your pocket. No matter your budget, there is a kit available for you. Keep in mind that the best experience does not come from using the most expensive drum kit. But if you have the money to spare, then go for it.
The price of a drum kit is dependent on the manufacturing company, the series in the line of the company, and the type of materials used to produce the kit.
Some of the top companies renowned for superb kit production over the years include the following;
Tama is a Japanese drum manufacturer founded by Hoshino Gakki. They commenced manufacturing in 1965. They are renowned for making beautiful kits that go for very affordable prices. Many popular drummers like Dave Lombardo have used Tama drums giving it some popularity and making it a favourite brand for many. Tama Drums make everything from full kits to hardware, sticks, and snare drums. Tama Drum Kit caters for all budget. For example, beginners or portable kit lovers can go for the Club Jam Mini Shell Packs. The Superstar classic and star series are perfect for the intermediate and pro drummers.
Drum Workshop also known as DW Drums was founded in 1972 as a teaching studio initially. It gradually evolved into a drum hardware manufacturing company, where it created products for drummers so as to cater for the cost of the teaching studio. One of the primary items they created was an adjustable trap drum stool. This was one of many DW things to hit the market in the early years.
Professional drummers and bands including Aaron Spears, Bon Jovi, Fleetwood Mac and The Eagles have endorsed the DW brand giving it immense popularity among drummers. DW specializes in custom drum kits. A custom drum kit builder available on their official website, enables customers to avail themselves of the various options like wood type, lugs and hoop types, finishing among others, to build the perfect drum it to suit their taste and needs.
Yamaha is a popular company known for prediction of motorcycles, motor vehicles, sound systems and equipment. Aside from this line of production, they are also well known for manufacturing all types of musical instruments including drum kits. The History of Yamaha dates back to 1887 where they produced only organs and were known as the Yamaha Organ Manufacturing Co. they didn’t start producing drum kits until 1964 where they initially copied designs from popular companies like Ludwig until they worked their way to becoming a household name in the percussion manufacturing industry.
Yamaha drums come standard with a bearing edge shape to optimize tonal balance and enhances the sound production. Their drum kit line includes – the absolute series, tour custom, maple custom, hip-gig kits, recording custom, rydeen and, stage custom.
Pearl is one of the most popular drum manufacturing companies in the world. Founded by Katsumi Yanagisawa in 1952, it has its headquarters in Japan. The company introduced its first professional series called the “Presidential Series’ in 1966. In 1984, it proceeded to introduce the export series which came in handy for beginners with everything they needed. This is one of the best-known kits of Pearl drums up until recent times.
It comes in two versions – the EXX72S and the EXX725S both with 22-inch bass drums. However, the EXX72S comes with 12-, 13, and 16-inch toms, while the EXX725S comes with 10-, 12, and 16-inch toms. Both possess solidly built hardware and comes at very affordable prices. Another distinct feature of the pearl kit is the fact that it can be customised to suit the taste and needs of drummers.
Sonor commenced the production of drum kits in 1875 and has since then perfected the art of producing reliable drum kits for all classes of drummers over the centuries. Sonor was founded in Bad Berleburg, Germany where its headquarters is located. Aside from its prowess in the manufacture of ddrum kits, Sonor is also renowned for the production of other forms of percussion such as cymbal sets and congas.
One of its very budget-friendly products is the AQ2 series that wields a complete maple shell build which fosters snappy articulation alongside a brilliant low-frequency touch to it. The SQ1 series is a carefully and meticulously crafted drum kit built with progressive top-notch hardware. Another outstanding characteristic of the SQ1 is that it comes with their famous tune safe feature that enhances optimum tuning capability and prevents tension rods from loosening easily. Overall, Sonor offers premium quality for very affordable market rates, which endears them to many drummers of all classes.
Ludwig is an American drum manufacturing company that was founded in Chicago Illinois by William and Theobald Ludwig, in the year 1909. The company did not gain popularity until the 1960s where the Ludwig drum kit was endorsed by the Beatles’ drummer, Ringo Starr. Ludwig is regarded as one of the best drum manufacturers in the world, and the reason for this is not farfetched.
They produced drum kits that meet professional standards of general performance alongside brilliant sound production. The NeuSonic series in the line of their drum kit series is a perfect example of this. It is made of American Maple and possesses thin, lightweight shells which produce full resonance. Overall, Ludwig creates brilliant kits that merge class and style with optimum reliability and functionality.
Having checked out the popular drum kit manufacturers, let us have a look at some of the drum kits that are pretty expensive in the market.
The Most Expensive Drum Kit
Ludwig takes the win for the most expensive drum kit as it holds the world record for the most expensive drum kit ever sold at auction. Ringo Starr’s Ludwig drumkit was sold for a whooping sum of$2,100,000 at Julien’s auction held in California, USA on December 5th, 2015.
Some other drums that are considerably expensive are:
The Collector’s Series Satin Specialty 5-Piece Shell Pack by DW
DW’s flagship line, the Collector’s Series, are the original US-made custom drums and also one of the most expensive of their drum kit series. The collector series is made from American Maple for its shells and provides low-end punch, warmth and attack for drummers. This shell pack is characterised by North American Maple shells with 3-Ply reinforcement hoops. Its other features include 6-ply and 7-ply tom shells, 7-ply bass shells, DW suspension tom mounts which allows drums to vibrate independently, allowing maximum resonance while firmly holding the drum in place; True-Pitch rod system w/5mm threads. This kit costs between $4875 and$5146.
The Tama Star Walnut 5-piece Shell Pack
The Tama star series is the flagship series of the brand and has endeared itself to numerous drummers and bands around the world. STAR drums feature a rounded bearing edge to provide more contact between the head and shell, allowing vibration to efficiently travel from the head to the shell. The star drums feature die-cast hoops which are denser and more consistent in shape than the popular triple-flanged hoops.
These die-cast hoops enhance tuning and keep the kit in tune longer due to their density and consistency in shape. The kit consists of a Bass drum, two 10″ x 8″, 12″ x 9″ Toms, and, two Floor toms. Hardware, snare and cymbals are sold separately. The price of the Tama star Walnut 5-Piece shell pack starts from $4877.
The JF-SSE-11-NEWPORT Beech Matte Walnut Veneer 4-Piece Shell Pack by Sonor
This kit is characterised by its Cross-Laminated shells which provide superior stiffness, optimum and pleasing resonance alongside spectacular tone. It also features the Sonor unique Total Acoustic Resonance (T.A.R.) Mounting System for vibration-free mounting providing wholesome pure tone and unlimited tuning ranges. It comes with 22” x18” bass drum no mount, 10” x 8” & 12” x 9” toms, 16” x14” floor tom with legs. Cymbals are sold separately. The starting price for this kit is $7537 and only available at Sonor certified dealers.
The DW Timeless Timber Romanian River Oak 6- Piece Shell Pack
This drum kit, which is currently the most expensive drum kit on the market right now, is handcrafted from a 1500 years old oak, dredged from the Olt River in Romania which spills into the Danube and the black sea. This unique feature gives it extreme density and resonance. These unique oak shells give the kit a warm and dark touch to it. This kit is complemented by custom plated bronze hardware and lux leather bass hoops. Less than 100 of this kit currently exist in the world. The kit consists of 22″ x 18″ bass drum, 10″ x 8″ and12″ x 9″ toms, 14″ x 12″ and 16″ x 14″, floor toms, and 14″ x 6-1/2″ snare. It is priced at $7999.