Performance Percussion PP142 Cajon review

The PP142's frontplate has a satisfyingly yielding quality, extremely comfortable in performance.

MusicRadar Verdict

This superb value cajon fills a much-needed space in a market which is abundant with mid-price and mouth-watering high end 'Boutique' instruments.


  • +

    Price, performance, playability.


  • -

    Not much.

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Performance Percussion's PP Drums division has been offering great value, low-cost drum kits and a host of percussion instruments for a while now, and most recently has included a highly affordable cajon in its widening catalogue.

The company's PP142 Cajon is a good-looking entry level model that springs a few surprises with its wide sound potential.


This classy-looking, honey-stained cajon stands 48cm tall by 30cm wide and 31cm deep, and considering that it's a 'budget' model, it really looks the business.

The first thing that strikes you is just how light it is when compared to some more costly versions and this is because of the type of synthetic material from which the surround is formed. You get a traditional-looking cajon with a rear sound-hole and four small rubber feet that keep things grounded nicely while you're playing.

The snare mechanism consists of four vertical (non-adjustable) guitar-string snares that do an admirable job of providing just the right amount of snap to your strokes, and this effect can be further adjusted via a removable horizontal Velcro strip. The rear sound-hole sports an attractive PP swirl motif but overall this cajon's look is definitely a classic example of understatement.

Hands on

The frontplate has a satisfyingly yielding quality and as such is extremely comfortable in performance. As this particular cajon is firmly aimed at the novice, this aspect will be greatly appreciated because you'll be able to play for extended periods and not 'feel it' as with models with a thicker (more substantial) frontplate.

The bass tone is really satisfying and easy to achieve and the finger tones and slaps complement the rich bass response nicely. The snare wires' snap effect rounds out the overall sound characteristic really well, meaning this cajon will have an immediate overall appeal to players of all levels.

This is a great excuse to explore the world of the cajon. If you've been curious about investing in one of these fascinating instruments but have previously been put off by having to shell out for even a modest mid-range model, then this could certainly offer a solution. PP also generously includes a decent padded carrying bag (with handle and shoulder strap) into the bargain.