The Best Cheap Electronic Drum Set For Beginners

Beginner Electronic Drum Sets

Disclosure

We recommend all products independently of 3rd parties including advertisers. We earn advertising fees from:
• • • • •
Sweetwater
• • • • •

Amazon

As an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases.
• • • • •

Drumming is one of the great joys in life. Although not everyone can have acoustic drums because of noise and space constraints, beginner electronic drum sets have made it affordable and practical for almost anyone to start drumming.

Too bad drumming can be expensive, loud, obtrusive and a space hog.

In come these beginner budget electronic drum sets.

Now you can drum without a lot of noise and not a lot of space required…they're relatively cheap too!

Note that there are limitations with beginner level kits, notably having fewer zones on drum pads and many lack chokeable cymbals, so if you're looking for more advanced features then take a look at our guide to The Best Electronic Drum Sets.

The Best Cheap Electronic Drum Sets For Beginners

Author & Contributors

Alden Acosta Alden Acosta

A drummer and former lead guitarist of the band Callalily, a platinum selling multi-awarded band from the Philippines. When not researching gear he is learning to play bass.

The Highest Rated Electronic Drum Sets Under $500

Alesis Debut Kit

89
GEARANK

89 out of 100. Incorporating 175+ ratings and reviews.

Street Price: 

$239

The Alesis Debut is Alesis' electronic drum set geared towards kids and beginner drummers.

It's a bit smaller compared to the other electronic kits in their lineup.

The module comes with 10 preset kits, a built-in metronome and an integrated drum coach feature to help you build your timing.

It also comes with everything you need to start drumming, including the sticks, headphones and the drum throne.

Features

  • 4 x 6-inch Adjustable Mesh Head Drums
  • 3 x 10-inch Cymbals
  • Bass Drum and Hi-Hat Floor Pedals
  • Sturdy metal mounting rack
  • DM-Lite drum module with 10 kits and 120 sounds
  • Connect to a computer or music player for play-along
  • Drum throne, sticks, headphones, and cabling included
  • Melodics learning software included

Pros

Along with the great feel of the mesh heads, users found the USB midi out to be useful for triggering drum kits and drum education software on their PC and tablets.

Cons

The drum rack might be small for some as this is geared towards younger beginners.

Overall

If you or your little one wants to get started on their path of drumming, grab this drum set from Alesis, one of the more reputable brands in electronic drums.

LyxJam 7-Piece

89
GEARANK

89 out of 100. Incorporating 150+ ratings and reviews.

Street Price: 

$290
LyxJam 7-Piece Electronic Drum Kit

The LyxJam 7-Piece kit is actually a 5 piece kit which counts the bass, snare and 3 toms.

They manufacturer must be counting the ride and crash as pieces which is not the norm.

This drumset boasts 209 sounds, 50 play-along songs, a 1-Song recording capacity and a built-in metronome.

More than enough for a beginner drummer looking to practice his or her chops.

Features

  • 3 x 8” Mesh Tom Pads
  • 1 x 8” Mesh Snare Pad
  • 1 x 8” Chokeable Crash Cymbal
  • 1 x 8” Chokeable Ride Cymbal
  • 1 x 8” Hi-Hat Cymbal with Controller
  • 1 x Kick Pedal
  • 1 x Sound Module with 209 Sounds
  • 1 x Drum Sticks, Cabling & Drum Rack

Pros

Users praised the great feeling tension adjustable mesh drum heads. Also, this kit has been recommended by buyers as a great balance between sound, playability, price and portability.

Cons

There was a report of a kick trigger breaking in less than 3 months after purchase. Careful handling is recommended with these beginner electronic drum sets as they were not designed to take the same kind of abuse that some of the more professional models are.

Overall

If you're looking for an excellent value for money way to learn the drums without waking the neighbors, the LyxJam 7-Piece electronic drum kit is worth a look.

Donner DED-100

92
GEARANK

92 out of 100. Incorporating 475+ ratings and reviews.

Street Price: 

$340
Donner DED-100 5-Piece Electronic Drum Set

The Donner DED-100 electronic drum set is a 5 piece all mesh drum set that features 200 sounds from 15 kits, 20 play-along tracks and a built-in metronome.

You can also record yourself straight into the drum module.

It has an aux in to play along with songs from your phone or other device and works as a MIDI controller via its USB MIDI output.

Features

  • 1 x Sound Module with 200 Sounds
  • 1 x Hi-Hat 10’’
  • 1 x Ride 10’’
  • 1 x Crash 10’’
  • 3 x Mesh Tom-tom 8’’
  • 1 x Mesh Snare 8’’
  • Hi-Hat Pedal and Kick Pedal
  • Drum Rack, Cabling, Drum Sticks, Audio Input Line and Drum Key

Pros

Users have described this drum kit as being perfect for beginners looking to try the drums. According to those who bought this set, it's easy to assemble and very quiet when used with headphones which is especially appreciated by parents.

Cons

There were some who complained about the hi-hat and kick pedal sensitivity being too sensitive or not sensitive enough. This might be fixed by adjusting the sensitivity setting in the module which is explained in the instructions.

Overall

If you want to test the drumming waters without investing too much money before knowing if you want to go all-in or not, the Donner DED-100 is a great choice.

LyxJam 8-Piece

89
GEARANK

89 out of 100. Incorporating 50+ ratings and reviews.

Street Price: 

$340
Image Unavailable

The LyxJam 8-Piece kit is a 5 piece kit like the LyxJam 7-piece kit but with a kick drum tower as opposed to a foot triggered button.

This drum set is better than its sibling for practicing traditional bass drum foot techniques.

It comes with a dual zone mesh snare and mesh toms, 448 sounds, 70 play-along songs, a generous 15-song recording capacity and a built-In metronome.

Features

  • 3 x 8” Mesh Toms with Rims
  • 1 x 10” Mesh Snare w/Layered Rims
  • 1 x 8” Hi-Hat Cymbal
  • 1 x 12” Ride Cymbal w/Edge & Choke
  • 1 x 12” Crash Cymbal w/Edge & Choke
  • 1 x 6” Kick Pad Tower
  • Hi-Hat Controller
  • Sound Module with 448 Sounds
  • Drum Sticks

Pros

Users praised the built in sounds as being of higher quality than even Alesis' or Donner's offerings. They also enjoyed the fact that the snare drum was bigger than the toms for a footprint a little closer to acoustic drums.

Cons

There was a user who complained about the hi-hat's feel and sound but it wasn't repeated in other reviews.

Overall

If you want the LyxJam drum set with the bigger cymbals and conventional kick drum tower for practice that's more translatable to acoustic drums, this is the one for you.

Alesis Nitro Mesh Kit

93
GEARANK

93 out of 100. Incorporating 6150+ ratings and reviews.

Street Price: 

$379
Alesis Nitro Mesh

At publication time this was the Highest Rated Electronic Drum Set Under $500.

The Alesis Nitro Mesh Kit gives you quite a lot for the money. As the name implies it features all-mesh pads along with a hi-hat, crash cymbal and ride.

The 8" dual-zone snare features mesh material that gives it a feel closer to an acoustic snare than regular rubber pads. The same material is also used on the kit's three 8" mesh toms.

Completing the set are three 10" cymbals, a hi-hat pedal and kick pedal.

All of these connect to the Alesis Nitro drum module which offers 40 drum kit sounds, 385 individual sounds, and 60 play along tracks right out of the box.

Other features include built-in metronome, Aux input, USB and MIDI connectivity.

Features

  • 1 x 8" Dual-zone Mesh Snare Pad
  • 3 x 8" Mesh Tom Pads
  • Kick Pad Tower
  • 10" Hi-Hat Pad
  • 10" Crash Pad
  • 10" Ride Pad
  • Hi-Hat Pedal and Kick Pedal
  • Alesis Nitro Drum Module with 385 sounds
  • 40 Preset kits
  • 60 built-in play-along tracks
  • USB/MIDI connection for using it as a MIDI controller with your computer
  • Headphone output, Aux Input

Pros

The four-post rack is a definite plus if you like to strike your drums hard. Value for money often comes up in reviews, impressing many budget strapped users with its mesh toms and snare. Another common talking point in reviews is its ease of use, making it great even for those with zero drumming experience.

Cons

There are a few reports of cables failing, and other build quality issues, but these are issues that can be avoided with proper handling and careful setup.

Overall

Don't let budget constraints stop you from learning to play the drums, check out the Alesis Nitro Mesh kit.

This video gives you a good idea of what it looks and sounds like in action:

Yamaha DTX402K

91
GEARANK

91 out of 100. Incorporating 50+ ratings and reviews.

Street Price: 

$500
Yamaha DTX402K 5-Piece Electronic Drum Set

The Yamaha DTX402K was released in 2018 and while not quite as popular as the newer Alesis options (likely due to being priced higher than them) it has been well received by those who bought it.

If you've played earlier Yamaha models before, then you'll be pleased with the improved response of the new rubber pads and chokeable cymbals on the DTX402K.

Features

  • 1 x 8" single zone snare pad
  • 2 x 8" single zone rack tom pads
  • 1 x 8" single zone floor tom pad
  • 2 x 10" cymbal pads with choke
  • 10" Hi-Hat pad
  • Hi-Hat pedal
  • Kick Pedal
  • DTX 402 drum module
  • 10 preset kits which are all customizable
  • 415 percussion sounds
  • 9 reverb types
  • 10 songs to play along with
  • 10 training functions
  • USB/MIDI type B connection for using it as a MIDI controller with your computer
  • 1/4" stereo out for Headphones
  • 1/8" aux input
  • iOS and Android app for training features and customization
  • iOS only Rec'n Share App for recording and publishing YouTube videos

Pros

The DTX402K is quite popular with parents who bought this for their kids to learn on, as well as more experienced drummers looking for a quiet solution for home practice. Several owners have commented on how easy it is to set up and also to store away. Being able to edit and create your own kits on the drum module (using the DTX402 Touch App) gives this more flexibility than some of the cheaper options.

Cons

It lacks a dual-zone snare but partly makes up for that with chokeable cymbals - a feature beginners are more likely to use.

Overall

If you want a bit more flexibility with your sounds (and don't need a dual-zone snare), and you prefer a 4-post stand for a little more stability, then this is your best choice.

Electronic Drum Set Still Not Quiet Enough?

The rubber drum pads found on electronic drum sets are much quieter than acoustic drums, mesh pads even more so, but sometimes the sound transmitted through the floor from the pedals and rack can still be troublesome.

To prevent as much noise as possible being transmitted to the floor it's best to have a mini drum riser with some isolation padding between your drums and the floor. This is often done by sandwiching tennis balls between two sheets of plywood or MDF.

Here's a video showing a basic home-made sound isolation drum riser that didn't require tools other than a drill:

Here's a more complicated option, but more stable:

Things To Consider When Buying An Entry-Level Electronic Drum Set

Complete List of Gear You Need to Start Drumming

Most electronic kits don't include a few of the essentials you need so make sure to leave room in your budget for any of the following items that you don't already have...
  1. Drum Sticks: these come in different weights with 5A being the most popular - check out our Drum Stick Guide.
  2. Drum Throne: This is what a drummer's stool is called - they are much better than regular chairs and you can find the highest rated ones in our Drum Throne Guide.
  3. Headphones or Amplifier: Most electronic drum kits don't provide sound on their own, instead you have to plug your drum's brain or sound module into headphones or an amplifier. To practice quietly (and not annoy the neighbors) get yourself a set of closed-back headphones. If you're going to play with other musicians, or if you just want to be loud, then you'll need an amplifier. There are a range of different amps that are good for drums - see our guide to Drum Amps and for further information read Things To Consider When Buying An Amplifier For Electronic Drums.

MIDI

If you want to use it as a MIDI controller or to record drums directly on your computer then you'll need one that sends out MIDI, which in this price range will usually be MIDI over USB.

Zones

Drum pads with multiple zones are ones which you can hit in different areas to trigger different sounds. Zones are usually concentric circles. For example a snare pad with multiple zones allows you to play regular snare sounds as well as selecting a rim-shot sound for the outer circle. The more zones you can get the wider the sound pallet is that you can work with in a single pre-set or custom kit saved in your sound module.

Choking Cymbals

Some electronic kits come with cymbals you can choke - this means that after you strike them you can grab them with your hand and the cymbal sound will immediately stop just like with an acoustic kit. Some of the cheaper models don't have this option so read the details carefully if this is something you want.

Kick Tower or Kick Button Pedal

Some electronic drum sets come with a kick drum pedal that is triggered by a button on the bottom of the pedal and some that act more like a conventional kick drum pedal with a tower trigger that is struck with a beater. There are some pros and cons to each variation like the conventional kind (kick tower) is closer to the feel of acoustic drums but can produce a louder sound than the kick button type, so be sure to consider this when making your selection.

Beginner Electronic Drum Set Selection Methodology

The first edition was published in 2016 and the current edition was published on July 28, 2021.

We looked at all electronic drum sets currently selling at major American online music gear retailers for less than $500 and placed the 16 most promising on our short-list for closer analysis. We then looked at ratings, reviews, videos and forum discussions about them, which tallied to over 10,500 sources from regular users and experts, including the most data up to late July of 2021. All these data were then processed by the Gearank Algorithm to produce the rating scores out of 100 you see above. Finally we selected the highest rated options to recommend above. For more information about our unique methods please read How Gearank Works.

About the Author and Contributors

Here are the key people and sources involved in this guide's production - click on linked names for information about their music industry backgrounds.

Lead Author & Researcher

Alden Acosta Alden Acosta

A drummer and former lead guitarist of the band Callalily, a platinum selling multi-awarded band from the Philippines. When not researching gear he is learning to play bass.

As an experienced producer and musician, Alden loves to help fellow musicians find the right gear for the job. Aside from music, Alden's interests include: CS:GO and MLBB.

Contributors

Alexander Briones: Supplemental writing.
Jason Horton: Supplemental writing, Editing and Illustrating.

Media

Main/Top Image: Compiled using photographs of the Yamaha DTX402K and Alesis Nitro Mesh Kit.

The videos have been embedded in accordance with YouTube's Terms of Service.

The individual product images were sourced from websites, promotional materials or supporting documentation provided by their respective manufacturers.

Comments

I appreciate your in-depth

I appreciate your in-depth reviews! What are your thoughts on the Alesis E-Drum Total for a beginner/child (age 7)?

thank you for your insightful

thank you for your insightful post! I was wondering if there was any specific reason you hadn't mentioned Drum from OWOW?
It does seem like an interesting concept, what are your thoughts?

Although it looks like it

Although it looks like it might be fun to play with, it's a MIDI controller for playing 'air drums' which doesn't meet the definition of an electronic drum set so it's not eligible to be considered for this guide.

Any good for a kid learning?

Any good for a kid learning? Table-top Electronic Drum Foldable Rubber-coated Water-resistant Pedals Sticks for $110.10.

Table top electronic drum

Table top electronic drum pads can be a lot of fun to play with but they don't do much to help in terms of learning how to play a drum kit. In particular they don't teach you how to use your feet on the hi-hats or kick drum.

If the kid is receiving instruction then they can use a table top set to practice basic stick control with actual drum sounds which you don't get with practice pads.

The bottom line is that they're more fun than practice pads but you can't learn important drum kit techniques using them.

Great that answers addresses

Great that answers addresses my concerns. My son will be starting drum lessons of sorts next year at school. I believe it's many different forms of percussion i.e. bongos etc and it's only for one term unless he really takes to it and I'll look at investing further. The table top will as you say will assist him with grasping the basics and I'm hoping they take head phone so that he can play as much as he wants without driving me nuts. My daughter want to play piano so I'll grab her a keyboard. She's 5 so between the two of them it'll be full noise. Which I am 100% behind and I play guitar and a bit of drums but there are limits.. haha! Thanks a lot.

Thanx for the guide. I really

Thanx for the guide. I really like the Roland TD-1K, the chokable cymbals, the sound ... Finally I went for the Yamaha, since I am a beginner and the fact that you have to pay almost 200$ for a kickpad in the Roland. The technique of the kick is missing otherwise. The Yamaha has surprised me in its integration with iphone. You can create your own kits, the training mode is amazing, can import midi songs as backingtracks. What I like most is to control garageband's drum kits and recordit. No computer, no usb interface, just the camera kit adaptor!

HI Guys,

HI Guys,
appreciate to know from you guys as i am a beginner also from United Arab Emirates, may know which low priced edrums to buy. Here it is expensive to buy such things. can anybody help me getting a new one or second hand one for $200 and can ship to my address....Thank you guys...my email id - subashworld@gmail.com

Hi, is the roland kits

Hi, is the roland kits upgradeable?
would like to have a multiple zone snare & toms pads on it as space is pretty much an issue in my apartment..

Roland have a more advanced

Roland have a more advanced version for $100 more that has the features you want with multiple trigger snare and toms - check out the Roland TD-1KV.

Hi, was wondering, what is

Hi, was wondering, what is the best value for absolute beginners but I'm thinking to use it for long term also, so maybe not the very basic ones (im thinking Forge kit, if I can find a good deal or even 2nd hand).

Another thing, I live in a flat in Spain, and the wall is kinda thin, so I'd like to know how loud is the edrum?

Last, (nippun already ask this but i just wanted to confirm), to start playing the edrum, I just need to buy the stick & the stool?

Thanks a lot

The Alesis Forge Kit does

The Alesis Forge Kit does sound like the right choice for you - although they might be difficult to find second hand - plenty of people are selling old Alesis DM kits but I haven't seen many Forge Kits second hand yet.

The rubber heads on the snare and tom pads of the Forge basically have the volume equivalent to hitting a thick piece of rubber with a drum stick - so not very loud.

The only extras you'll need, other than the obvious drum sticks, are a set of headphones so you can hear your drums and backing tracks without annoying your neighbors, and a drum throne to sit on.

Thanks for your reply

Thanks for your reply

Now, I'm more determined to buy and finally learn to play drums :)

Noisewise, at least now I know I cant play the drums at night, but lets see how noisy it is when I've bought it!

Btw, 1 question, in terms of quality, which 1 better, Medeli or Fame, as I saw plenty of 2nd hand with good price in Europe.

And I'm sure wont need amplifier & I have studio headphones already.

We haven't analyzed either

We haven't analyzed either Medeli or Fame electronic drum kits yet, not because we know of anything wrong with them, but because they haven't had widespread availability in the USA when we've been doing detailed research on electronic drums.

The European focused website audiofanzine does have some user reviews:
- Medeli
- Fame

I hope this helps.

Thanks for the links.

Thanks for the links.
I like what I see with fame, and with €350 I can get brand new DD5500 pro (I think mid level), now im just browsing for good deals, or 2nd hand, and reviews on youtube.

Hey I was wondering if having

Hey I was wondering if having multiple zones on drum pads makes it more difficult to learn.

Personally, I don't think so.

I personally don't think so - at least not by much.

The small amount of additional accuracy required when hitting the pads is relatively minor compared to learning to get your right arm and leg to work independently in order to play mildly syncopated hi-hat and kick patterns - at least that was my experience.

For someone who's just beginning to learn drums, I don't think it matters too much if they get a single zone snare meaning they won't be able to play rim shots - the same goes for single trigger cymbals that don't allow you to strike the bell.

If you start with a basic kit now and your proficiency later increases to the point where you want to use more advanced techniques, then you can always either upgrade your pads/triggers or move up to more advanced kits like these.

Hey, am buying a new kit as

Hey, am buying a new kit as beginner..i would like your professional opinion on Alesis Forge Kit as it is also priced $500 same as the Roland TD1K.

I noticed that the Alesis Forge kit is overall bigger sized compared to the Roland which in my personal opinion look like a toy..would the size of the electronic drum kit affect my ability to learn acoustic drum in the future?

Thanks in advance!

You will always have slight

You will always have slight adjustments changing between kits including changing between acoustic kits.

The size of the kit won't have much effect on learning acoustic drums later - the main thing is that your electronic kit has 5-pieces + hi-hats and at least 1 cymbal - 2 cymbals are better.

The Alesis Forge kit is fairly well rated - you can see its Gearank score here.

I am buying my first electric

I am buying my first electric drum kit and I wanted to know that along the drum kit is anything else required for example an amplifier.
Please answer.

Good question Nippun.

Good question Nippun.

If your drum set doesn't include one, you'll need a Drum Throne (Amazon affiliate link) to sit on while playing.

To hear your drums you'll either need a set of Headphones or an Amplifier. The main options chosen by electronic drummers are Drum Amps, Keyboard Amps or a Powered PA Speaker. If you're not sure which would be best for you then read Things To Consider When Buying An Amplifier For Electronic Drums.

Lastly, it's always a good idea to have a couple of spare sets of Drum Sticks (Amazon affiliate link) sitting around just in case.

Hi,

Hi,

What about the Millenium budget kits sold by Thomann? They have a $300 one (MPS-150) that reviewers constantly praise on their website.

Then there is the MPS-425 on the same price range as the Roland TD-1K but with a mesh snare and also excellent reviews.

I would love to know how good these Millenium ones really are as I want to get a budget kit to learn drums that I won't outgrow anytime soon, but I don't want to risk spending $500 if I can spend $300 because I don't know how good I am going to be.

Thanks!

We are currently focused on

We are currently focused on music gear that is sold by the major American retailers so we don't have any data on Millenium kits at the moment.

The behringrer XD80usb

The behringrer XD80usb cymbals do choke. It takes a specific touch, but they do.

Great guide!