Your favourite new drum kits of 2022

Ludwig Vistalite Anniversary
(Image credit: Ludwig)

The acoustic drum kit category is full of options, from beginner kits to high-end and custom drums designed to our exact specification and everything in-between. The options keep getting better and better, though, with choices on configuration, styling and finishes offered at all levels.

1. Ludwig Vistalite 50th Anniversary

Ludwig Vistalite 50th Anniversary

(Image credit: Ludwig)

50 years on from its introduction, the fantastic plastic Ludwig Vistalite is still going strong, and Ludwig chose to reissue it in some amazing finishes for 2022. Whether it’s single colours, tri-bands or candy stripes, your winner this year is clear!

2. Mapex Mars Birch & Maple

Mapex Mars Maple 2022

(Image credit: Mapex)

Mapex’s Mars kit is a mid-priced classic, and for 2022 it got an overhaul with all-new maple drums now on the menu. Both shell types feature Mapex’s SONIClear bearing edges to enhance shell/head contact, and the SONIClear suspension system to increase resonance. They’re offered in a number of configurations, making this a very appealing all-rounder in the semi-pro category.

3. Premier Genista

Premier 2022 range

(Image credit: Premier)

Just in time for inclusion in our 2022 polls, Premier celebrated a massive anniversary by revamping its entire range. The Genista is offered in multiple versions, with the Classic, Heritage and brand-new maple-shell edition. We couldn’t be happier to see Premier coming back with a bang, and we think 2023 could be the year that sees the UK brand regain its prolific status.

4. Tama Starclassic Performer

Tama Starclassic Performer 2022

(Image credit: Tama)

Last year’s winner snuck its way back into this year’s poll thanks to the unveiling of the striking Sky Blue Aurora finish we see here, along with a limited edition 20”/10”12”/16” configuration. Tama has really put the effort in with its finishes over the last few years, giving us exotic styling at workhorse prices.

5. Natal DNA Stealth

Natal DNA Stealth practice kit

(Image credit: Natal)

Natal’s DNA Stealth kit flips the idea of an acoustic kit on its head, quite literally. The DNA Stealth comes fitted with mesh heads out of the box, alongside a set of low-volume practice cymbals. But, when it’s time to play louder, you can fit the DNA with regular drum heads and pair it with your choice of cymbals, just like any other drum kit. It’s the order in which Natal has approached the kit that makes it so appealing. Hats off!

6. DrumCraft Series 6

DrumCraft Limited Edition finishes

(Image credit: DrumCraft)

Another name to be revived this year is DrumCraft, which has been carefully brought back to life by European retail giant, Thomann. The Series 6 is the flagship kit, offering maple/walnut hybrid shells, precision-engineered brushed nickel hardware and a huge choice of configurations/add-on drums.

Stuart Williams

I'm a freelance member of the MusicRadar team, specialising in drum news, interviews and reviews. I formerly edited Rhythm and Total Guitar here in the UK and have been playing drums for more than 25 years (my arms are very tired). When I'm not working on the site, I can be found on my electronic kit at home, or gigging and depping in function bands and the odd original project.