10 tips for choosing the right drum set-up

Drum set-up

Drum set-up

Choosing a drum set-up can be tricky. There are so many options and configurations available, each with their own pros and cons. So, courtesy of our friends at Rhythm, here are 10 tips for making the right choices to suit you…

1. Four piece drum set

Has the advantage of simplicity, and allows you to get your ride cymbal in close and at perfect height.

2. Five Piece: two top toms and one floor tom

The drawback is that your ride cymbal ends up higher and not so close.

3. Five piece with one top tom and two floor toms

Classic Buddy Rich/John Bonham set up - Buddy hung his towel on the second floor.

4. Floor tom mounted on floor stand

Looks cool, but can be unstable, and it's difficult to position everything where you want.

5. Floor tom on traditional three legs

More stable, but slightly less resonant than tom mounted on Floor Stand.

Next page: rack systems and tom mounts

Yamaha hexrack

Yamaha hexrack

6. Rack system

Can look cool, and may even simplify your setting-up. But can be a real hassle to re-position. (Pictured: Yamaha Hexrack)

7. Resonance tom mounts

Give it a little extra sustain, but are heavier and bulkier, so need bigger cases.

8. Old-fashioned mounts

…with intrusive, 'disappearing' tom arms. Less bulky, with better lateral reach. But you lose resonance.

9. Small tom mounted on a snare drum stand

Make sure the arms will clamp a small (12") drum, but don't clamp the drum hoops too tightly.

Meil drum rug

Meil drum rug

10. Carpet, drum key and gaffer tape

These are absolutely, irrefutably, downright essential elements of your set-up. Faux Zebra skin finish on the carpet is optional…

For the best monthly drumming tips, video lessons and reviews, check out Rhythm Magazine.