Top 8 Drum Sets Under $1000 for Performances or Home Drumming Sessions

30 Models Considered
62 Hours of Research
5 Experts Interviewed
166 Reviews Analyzed

Can you find a quality drum set at a reasonable price? The answer is – yes, and today we’ll prove it to you. There are many reasons to shop on a budget when acquiring music gear. Perhaps you’re buying for a child who may soon find another hobby or grow too big for the current set. Or perhaps you need a simpler set to travel with or practice on, while your main set stays in studio. No matter your need, we’ve got the most up to date guide for you to find the best drum set under $1000.

We want to help you find the most practical set which is why we showcase sets with a variety of setups and number of pieces. Your budget option can still provide for your preferred layout. To ensure value for money, you must also note what age group it’s for. And of course aesthetics matter in the music industry, so look at available designs, colors and materials too. We share all of this. If you pick correctly, you’ll love your budget-friendly drum set as much as a higher end set.

Top 8 Drum Sets Under $1000 Review 2018

Below we showcase nine different options. To guarantee they’re all worth your consideration, we had them tested by a few expert drummers, playing many genres. The best ones we found are reviewed in detail, but you can also use the comparison table to get and overall impression of your options. If you’re not sure how to pick the best drum set under $1000 for your specific scenario, read through our helpful buying guide at the end of this article. Now, let’s get you kitted out.

Name and Features Image Rating Price
1. Pearl Decade (Editor’s Choice)
The best choice for a drum set under $1000, this kit will not disappoint you – whether in build quality or sound
Pearl-Decade
2. Pyle Pro Electronic Drum Kit (Best Electronic Drum Set Under 1000)
A complete kit with a huge variety of sounds and effects, this is one for those that don’t want to disturb their neighbors and do want a versatile set
Pyle-Pro-Electronic-Drum-kit
3. Pearl Roadshow RS525SC (Best Complete Drum Set Under 1000)
Stylish, professional-looking and feeling set, this is a set for those that want to take learning to play the drums seriously
Pearl-Roadshow-RS525SC
4. Rise Sawtooth Full Size Student Drum Set (Best Beginner Set)
Everything you need to start playing, at a very reasonable price range
Rise-by-Sawtooth-Full-Size-Student-Drum-Set
5. Mendini by Cecilio Junior Drum Set (Budget Pick)
A great set for the little ones, or for adults looking to get some miniature practice drums for fun!
Mendini-by-Cecilio-Junior-Drum-Set-with-Adjustable-Throne
6. Gammon Percussion Adult Drum Set (Best Set for Practicing)
Optimum choice for the budding drummers out there, that need a set to practice and learn on
Gammon-Percussion-Full-Size-Complete-Adult-5-Piece-Drum-Set
7. Gretsch CM1E826PDCB (Best Maple Set)
This is an ideal set for students or ex-professionals on a budget, wanting to re-live onstage memories
Gretsch-CM1E826PDCB
8. Yamaha Stage Custom Birch (Best Set for Teens)
A classic set that can be used by beginner to intermediate players, as well as those more advanced, thanks to the impressive sound this Birch drum set projects
Yamaha-Stage-Custom-Birch
9. Ludwig LC178X025 (Best Kids Set)
The best choice for your kids and teens, a good starting point for them to learn the basics and advance
Ludwig-LC178X025
Top 8 Drum Sets Under $1000 for Performances or Home Drumming Sessions
Features
  • Number of pieces: 7
  • Age: teen/adult
  • Material: 6-ply Maple
  • Colors: deep red, satin brown, solid yellow, white satin pearl

Extra features: suitable for professionals and gigging players

OVERALL RATING: 10 out of 10

This is no low end set and you can see that by simply looking at it. It has a classic feel to it, thanks to the maple wood used. This also makes it practical for almost any environment. Some professionals may prefer a professional look in brown, while kids or lovers of some genres want the more funky red or yellow. Yes, even on budget your set can make a statement as much as your music does.

You also know you’re getting excellent quality since this set has a lifetime warranty. This makes it a worthwhile buy for professionals. You can be sure the maple wood will also add to the sound quality you’ll get from these drums. The brand used 6-ply (5.4mm) maple shells. This brings forth a quite thunderous sound. There will be no shortage of volume when playing this.

Another aspect that adds to the sound quality is Pearl’s mounting setup. The Opti-Loc method ensures your toms won’t wobble, and this even adds to the tone clarity. Once again, a sign that this will work for seasoned players.

Note that while you get hardware for your floor tom, you need to purchase cymbals and their stands separately.

Pearl invested years in planning this drumkit and the brand’s signature characteristics can be seen all over it: quality components, it looks great and sounds spectacular.

This is one of the only maple sets you’ll get at such a good price, so it’s well worth your consideration.

PROS:
  • Exceptional style
  • Maple wood set
  • Quality locking mechanisms
  • Wobble free
  • Multiple finishes available

CONS:
  • Cymbals and stands not included

Features
  • Number of pieces: 7 drums
  • Age: all
  • Material: n/a
  • Colors: silver gray

Extra features: comes packed with 55 preset + 10 custom preloaded drum kits, 300+ cymbal / drum sounds, learning mode for beginners

OVERALL RATING: 9.7 out of 10

These days high-tech products make our lives easier and it’s no different for musicians. Whether you want to practice or perform, this electric set is a compact option that easily fits in your studio and is super easy to travel with.

Its portability is further enhanced by the fact that you don’t have to be near a power outlet to use it. Simply use C-type batteries when you want to practice in the tour bus or feel creative somewhere other than the studio.

With this electric drum set you’re spoiled for choice as you have over 50 presets and over 300 cymbal sounds to pick from. The sound is authentic enough to mimic a real drum set and you have all necessary options including bass drum and hi hats.

This purchase makes sense no matter your playing level: the sounds are of such good quality that it suits professionals, while the system incorporates a learning mode to get you started if you’re a novice.

The other benefit of electric drum sets is that they make recording and editing much easier. You can easily connect this to your computer with its audio software.

The brand took it one step further, catering for all possible scenarios musos find themselves in. Through the Aux in and out ports you can connect headphones, amplifiers and other devices during recording, or simply listen to what you created.

It has a striking silver finish, adding some style to any band setup.

PROS:
  • Portable size
  • Battery powered
  • Easily connect to PC
  • Multiple presets

CONS:
  • Some drummers prefer real drum sets
  • Not for gigging

Features
  • Number of pieces: 5
  • Age: teen/adult
  • Material: 9-ply poplar
  • Colors: charcoal metallic, bronze metallic, black, red

Extra features:  comes with stick bag, sticks, welcome pack and poster

OVERALL RATING: 9.6 out of 10

If you want a shortcut to getting a quality set in a blink of an eye, this is one of your best options. This is a complete set, so your cymbals and hardware will arrive with your set. There’s even a matching snare which is often absent from some sets. It also adds a sense of professionalism when your whole kit matches so perfectly. That makes this basic set sufficient for professional performances too, if your band is shopping on a budget.

The rest of the kit also adds to a great user experience facilitated by Pearl: you’re given a stick bag and a poster, so you can instantly feel like a rock star. The other ideal application is using this as a training drumset or having it in your studio if you give drum classes. It’s durable enough for regular use thanks to quality hardware, but doesn’t require you to break the bank. It’s also quite light, making it easy to move around or travel with. This is a very versatile option indeed.

The last great surprise we got is when we saw that even the drum throne is included, which is very rare. If you’re new to drumming, buying a full kit makes it less overwhelming to get started.

Pearl makes these kits in many different colors, and they all look stylish. There’s also a timelessness about them and they will suit the taste of young and old.

Note that the bass drum is slightly smaller than in some other kits. It still sounds great for all genres, but is even better for Jazz or Fusion.

PROS:
  • Full set
  • Timeless aesthetics
  • Quality hardware
  • Light weight

CONS:
  • Smaller bass drum isn’t ideal for everyone

Features
  • Number of pieces: 5
  • Age: kid or adult beginner
  • Material: 6-ply poplar
  • Colors: crimson sparkle, blue sparkle, black

Extra features: choice of Sawtooth or Zildjian cymbals to complete your kit

OVERALL RATING: 9.4 out of 10

With this kit the brand makes drum kit shopping much easier. Firstly, you get all you need in one purchase, since the set includes cymbals too. That means fewer additional expenses and less time spent on finding appropriate ones that will suit this kit.

Secondly, the brand offers you two options of cymbals. More experienced players often have favorite brands and here you’re not forced to settle for one you may less prefer.

Even though it’s a low budget, beginner set, it still boasts excellent features, such as the 45° bearing edges. These affect your tone and if you’re after modern, sustained sounds, you’ll love this kit. Overall this set gives a warm feel to your playing, which is ideal for newbies.

The brand invested time and effort into aesthetics too. Young players are drawn to the sparkly look, but there’s also classic black or a bright red to opt for. That caters for a large variety of players’ personal tastes.

Note that it is a bit on the heavy side, but remember that includes your cymbals, which aren’t always included in other purchases.

One other benefit for new players is that it’s easy to put together, even though it often arrives completely disassembled. We appreciate that the brand ensures each part is protected until it reaches you. Putting it all together will take you less than two hours and then you’re set to play.

PROS:
  • Cymbals included (complete set)
  • Striking designs
  • Different cymbal options
  • Warm tone
  • Easy assembly

CONS:
  • Not a professional set

Features
  • Number of pieces: 3
  • Age: 3-8 year olds
  • Material: plastic
  • Colors: black, blue, red, green, purple

Extra features: comes with drum sticks

OVERALL RATING: 9.0 out of 10

Drum kits cater for all types of needs, because not everyone wants a large set. Although this is not an entire, traditional set, it’s still the answer to many people’s preferences. Some musicians want compact kits for small gigs, or this can be used to teach small kids the basics of drumming before investing in larger, pricier equipment. Of course this is also your solution if you have limited space but want to pursue your hobby. Because the cymbal (yes, it’s included!) is fixed to the bass drum, even less of your floor space gets taken up.

This is a hard wood and plastic set, but it still produces decent sound. You get the benefit of trying out all different types of drums as it gives you a tom, the bass drum, and also a snare.

The bass drum pedal is included, so no need to shop any more. All you need is right here. Even a sturdy 3-legged drum throne is yours. This chair has rubberized legs to prevent the throne from slipping on the floor and its height can be adjusted. Your growing child can use this for years to come, or let all kids join in the fun. Each can find their preferred sitting position.

The brand provides instructions so assembly is effortless. As a final bonus this set is super light, making it easy to move wherever needed or transport it elsewhere.

PROS:
  • Chair included
  • Drum sticks included
  • Super low price
  • 1 year warranty

CONS:
  • Not a full kit

Features
  • Number of pieces: 5
  • Age: kid/teen/adult
  • Material: not specified
  • Colors: black, blue, green, red

Extra features: comes with free drum instruction DVD

OVERALL RATING: 8.9 out of 10

This set looks great thanks to the high gloss finish the manufacturer adds to the exterior of the drums. Aesthetics matter when you need your performance to make an impression on a crowd. Therefore this adds exceptional value to an entry level kit.

The kit has everything you need to get started, making it ideal for beginners. You don’t have to buy anything else to get started.

It’s also designed for use by kids and teens, making it a good investment in your child’s hobby. However, it’s quite versatile and it’s a normal sized set, so with a few adjustments, an adult will also feel comfortable playing on it. That means this is a long-term solution if your child shows interest at a young age.

If this is the case you’ll also appreciate the free DVD that gives the player some instructions, making it a perfect beginner kit. The DVD will also help you with assembly, though this is very easy.

It’s quite heavy, but this is in part because cymbals are included and it’s made from quality components. Professionals can also consider this, with the option of upgrading by simply using better quality cymbals. You can have peace of mind of buying quality because this kit from an industry leader has impressed many buyers. No wonder it has been a best seller for the past several years.

PROS:
  • Full kit
  • Normal sized but suitable for children
  • Easy to assemble

CONS:
  • Professionals may prefer better cymbals

Features
  • Number of pieces: 6
  • Age: teen/adult
  • Material: 7-ply maple
  • Colors: walnut, aqua sparkle, deep cherry & satin deep cherry

Extra features: comes with padded travel bags

OVERALL RATING: 8.8 out of 10

Here is another drum set available in a variety of finishes so you can pick one that matches your personal style or your band’s look. There’s something for everyone as the aqua sparkle is vibrant, while a classic deep cherry colored set will always be some players’ favorite option.

Here’s another brand that invested time into designing an exceptional maple set. For beginners this is good news since you don’t need a lot of expert tuning to get great tone. It’s even ergonomically improved, so you’ll find it easy and comfortable to play on this one. Because comfort affects your play and technique, it makes this set a valuable option, especially if you’re planning on making drumming a career.

Stability is vital, especially of you hit your drums hard. There’s no chance of damaging your Gretsch thanks to quality hardware. We love the attention to detail in this budget buy as you get die cast claws on the bass drum. These will look new for longer than many others.

The brand even caters for unique setups, making it a smart option for experienced players. The L-arms give you a lot of freedom in positioning the toms.

Because this is an upgrade on previous models, the brand can now boast that they solved a few challenges found in earlier models. You’ll have the benefit of quality components and you can use this for almost any genre.

As with many drum kits, remember that you have to purchase cymbals separately.

PROS:
  • Maple wood
  • Excellent tone
  • Different designs available
  • Customized setup is possible

CONS:
  • No cymbals included

Features
  • Number of pieces: 5
  • Age: teen/adult
  • Material: 6-ply birch
  • Colors: natural wood, cherry red, black, honey amber, pure white

Extra features: air seal system on drum shells

OVERALL RATING: 8.7 out of 10

With this kit, the quality starts at the very foundation of the kit: the shells. You get the benefit of the birch wood which is popular in many high end, professional sets. Here it produces excellent tone and the 6-ply design is very sturdy. It gives and conveys just the right amount of vibration. The key to this is also the low mass lugs. They allow the shells to vibrate, so nothing prevents the great sound you’re looking for.

The set will look almost new for a long time since Yamaha used die cast claw hooks on the bass drum. These don’t easily show age and will survive regular or even heavy-duty usage.

In its entirety this is slightly lighter than some similar sets on the market. When you’re touring or traveling to practice often, every pound you don’t have to carry will matter.

Though meant for beginner or intermediate players, there’s no reason professionals shouldn’t consider this too. Because it contains so many high quality components and the wood provides excellent tones, a professional can simply exchange the drum heads to upgrade it to a professional kit.

The brand chose a diverse set of designs, so you’re sure to find one that suits your style, whether you want a classic look, or you want your set to make impact the moment the stage lights up.

Note that the brand’s packaging is often insufficient to protect it during transport.

PROS:
  • Quality wood product
  • Can upgrade it easily
  • Die cast claws
  • Diverse design options

CONS:
  • No chair or cymbals
  • Yamaha’s packaging needs improvement

Features
  • Number of pieces: 4
  • Age: 4-10 year olds
  • Material: not specified
  • Colors: black, wine, white sparkle

Extra features: comes with access to online easy-to-follow 6-part lesson plan

OVERALL RATING: 8.5 out of 10

It’s best to start playing when you’re still small, but comfort in front of the drum set is so important. It determines how in control you feel and affects technique. That’s why it’s great to see respected brands produce quality drum sets for kids.

This is not a full kit, but has all the drums you need to get started: bass drum, floor tom, normal tom and a snare. It even comes with a foot pedal, meaning your child can start playing the moment you get this, without any further shopping necessary.

The overall look is quite stylish, turning this into a professional looking set. If your child plans on performing on stage and he or she wants to make a good impression, aesthetics matter. Kids can even pick their favorite color which will make them love their kits even more.

It’s surprisingly heavy for a kids set, but that’s in part because you’re given cymbals too, unlike with many other kits. It includes the stands for the hi-hats so kids can learn from the very start what it really takes to set up their instruments.

If they’re learning from scratch, enjoy the lesson plans Ludwig provides. This is available online, making it even better than the DVD medium. It’s accessible to almost anyone and you can easily view it on a tablet or mobile phone, placed on a music stand.

It’s not that small, so even people with limited space available can consider using this.

PROS:
  • Cymbals included
  • Easily accessible lesson plans
  • Ideal for children
  • Throne included

CONS:
  • Not a complete set

Buying Guide

That’s a lot of information to digest and there’s no universal right or wrong. Professional players know that a drum kit and setup is a very personal matter, so what works for your friend, may not work for you. A little more understanding of this topic will help you make an appropriate decision for YOU. And if you’re still wondering if this is worth pursuing, we list all the reasons why this shopping spree is your best decision yet.

Advantages of getting a drum set

Drum set 3

There’s a good reason many parents invest in this instrument during their children’s younger years. For the younger generation a kit can help with many aspects of development:

  • Developing motor skills
  • The rhythm has a calming effect on many
  • Mastering a skill can spark self confidence

However, anyone can benefit from drums:

  • If you’re already playing, a drum set allows you to practice at home, instead of using a tutor’s or hiring gear to perform with. Having limitless access to a kit is the only way you’ll develop your skill optimally.
  • Playing on a drum kit is an excellent way of dealing with stress. It’s also proven to help people focus and relax.
  • Drumming gives you an excellent workout, so it has health benefits too. It produces endorphins just as other exercise will do, so you’ll feel better when you play some at the end of a challenging day.
  • Purchasing an upgraded or better suited drum kit will make your drumming more enjoyable.
  • If your current set is taking up too much space there are many compact kits available that will make your home seem less cluttered.

A different, practical option is to invest in an electric drum set. Your neighbors will appreciate the fact that you make less noise, as you can listen through headphones. It’s also very dynamic to record drum tracks, edit them and share them with others. Of course, these sets are smaller, so taking your favorite hobby wherever you go is now possible.

We don’t think you need another reason to invest in drums now, so let’s determine which one will suit you.

Features to consider when choosing a drum set under 1000

Drum set 4

The good news is that you can find an excellent option for under $1000. However, you may have to sacrifice one aspect in favor of another, such as settling for a smaller set that has the advantage of having cymbals included. You need to determine what is most important to you and to help you do that, we’ll explain important features in depth.

Number of pieces and what’s included

Don’t get sidetracked by marketing material that talks about how amazing a set is, before you’ve checked what’s included. Many of the most popular kits are all inclusive: drums, cymbals, hardware and, if you’re lucky, even a drum throne. This makes the most sense, especially for beginners as it makes shopping for a kit effortless.

If you do want to customize a kit, other sets become more practical. When you’ve been drumming for a while you’ll know which cymbals you prefer and may purchase them from one vendor and your set from another.
You may already own your ideal drum throne, so buying another one with your kit will be a waste of money.

Brands often offer some valuable extras such as sticks and training material. If you’re still a newbie, these will come in quite handy, so they’re worth the expense.

Age of drummer

Here you need to consider two things: the player’s size determines what size drum set will work and his or her level of experience will tell you what type of set they need.

Brands cater for children, so you’ll find smaller sets, usually appropriate for kids under 10. Older kids should find an average kit comfortable to play on, as long as you can adjust the hardware to change drum height and angle. That means a kit you buy for your teenager should suffice for adults in the family, too.

Beginner sets may have fewer drums to play on, but after playing for a while, even a young child will need a full set if they want to take the hobby seriously.

Adults can play on almost any standard set, as you’ll simply adjust the height to make it comfortable to play.

Type of drum set

Drum set 5e1

This can be a difficult decision: A traditional set or an electronic set (also called electric drums). Each one comes with its own benefits. It’s best to imagine in what scenarios you’ll use your drums most often and then pick accordingly.

Many professionals prefer the authentic tone of a traditional set. However, advanced electronic models can mimic those sounds pretty closely. You may still prefer a traditional set if it’s what you’re used to and you don’t want to go through a new learning curve. It may also be part of your band’s style.

A huge attraction of an electronic set is that you can use it without making noise others will hear. That empowers you to practice anywhere without bothering others. It’s also a more practical option for recording tracks as you can connect it to your computer. On these sets you’ll find many different sounds which will be triggered when you hit a rubber or mesh pad.

The drawback here is that you need an amplifier to play the sound loud, and you need a power source, which isn’t the case with traditional sets.

A great compromise is to enjoy your traditional set, but to add drum triggers to your drum heads. These can be connected to external electronic drum modules. When you hit them, it will trigger certain sounds. That adds more dynamics to your playing and you can enjoy traditional sounds with modern, alternative effects.

Dimensions

Always start by measuring how much space you have available. There are enough options on the market that you don’t have to sacrifice all your floor space, as can be seen with our Ludwig model.

One way to waste less space is purchasing a set with cymbal hardware attached to the drums, instead of its own stand taking up more floor area. This you can see in the Mendini.

Materials and build quality

Above you saw how often we mentioned wood types. That’s because this plays a huge role in what your drums sound like. Here are a few examples:

  • Maple: It’s the most popular and produces a balanced tone – you’ll find this in our first choice set made by Pearl.
  • Birch: Also often used, giving you a bright audio experience that works well for recording tracks
  • Mahogany: These drums often sound vintage
  • Poplar: Cost-effective option that also gives you a bright sound

Most sets are made of a few layers (plies) of wood and the more, the brighter your sound will be. If you opt for fewer layers, there are lower notes with warmer tones.

You must also read up about the build quality, especially bearing edges. This will be mentioned in terms of degrees and each type will affect the sound quality. The sharper the bearing edge, the brighter the sound.

Know that the finishes aren’t only for show, but serve to protect your drum sets. That’s why it’s better to invest in a vinyl finish than simply a natural look.

Warranty

A warranty is always a clue to the quality of the kit you’re buying. It’s also essential since a drum kit takes some heavy punishment. Make sure what the warranty covers. Is it only on factory mistakes, or can you ask them for replacement parts if components break within a few months? A one-year warranty is often sufficient and a market standard, but some high end sets will have lifetime warranties.

FAQ

Most kits are designed to be user-friendly and easy to assemble. Look for a kit that comes with instructions so you have a reference if you do get stuck. Rarely will you need a lot of tools, as many parts can actually be tightened with a drum key which should be provided by the manufacturer.

Many factors determine your kit’s sound. For starters you can tighten nuts with your drum key. If you’re not used to doing this yet, use an electronic tuner to help determine when it’s optimally tuned. If your kit is older, you should look at replacing the drum heads. Perhaps your kit simply needs some dampening to prevent overtones that can be disturbing. An easy way (and cheap) is to stick duct tape to the heads.

This depends on what is included in your kit. Firstly, you need cymbals for a real drumming experience. Then, if any of these items don’t come with your set, it’s wise to invest in it: a drum chair (called a throne), drum sticks, a stick bag to protect your wooden sticks so they don’t get damaged. Also make sure your set comes with a drum bass pedal.

You can purchase a set that will fit into your available space, because there are many different kits available. An average set will require an area of about 5’x 5’, but this depends on how large your kit is and also your preferred setup.

There is no best, only a best for you. A traditional set requires no electrical power, while an electronic device needs power and an amplifier. If you don’t want to bother those around you, an electric set is ideal. Electronic drums are also more portable.

Our Verdict

Now it’s down to what you identified as your ideal kit. Do you know yet which one you’ll order?

For us, the winning option is definitely the Pearl Decade. It looks professional and sounds great. It’s a full sized kit, with the only drawback being that you’ll have to purchase cymbals separately. It’s also made of maple wood, which is the professional’s favorite. That makes it worth it for you, too.

If you’re drumming at home and your neighbors complain, or if you enjoy recording, the Pyle Pro is a valuable investment. It’s so compact, you can take it anywhere in your car, and we were quite impressed by its extensive list of available sound effects.

The Rise Sawtooth deserves some attention as well. Beginners deserve quality equipment as much as professionals, and this one impresses, while being available at an exceptionally reasonable price. We also love that you can pick your preferred cymbals, because drumming is all about finding what works for you.

Use these tips and you’ll be well on your way to becoming a pro yourself. If you have any more questions, please leave your thoughts below.

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