Any time we want to invest some money in equipment, or in anything else for our congregations or personal use, we want to make sure that we are getting what we need and we aren’t wasting our money. In order to make the right choices, we need to rely on someone who is familiar with the kind of equipment we need, including drum sets. So what is the best drum set for church and how can we understand what our needs are if we do not have the knowledge and the experience?
I’m Andrea Gatti. I love God and His people. Coming from a background of being a professional musician and being involved in worship ministry since my conversion, I want to give my advice on how to choose the best drums, considering both need and budget.
Why drums are important
Listening to a band that has a bad regulation of the sound can be very annoying and disturbing. Bad sound can divert the attention of the congregation, blocking them from focusing and concentrating on God. Drums are usually the most disturbing instrument if not well handled, due to the nature of the instrument. This instrument is struck/hit to obtain the sound, so the note that is projected reaches immediately it’s peak. This is why drums can seem so loud.
Take the example of boiling a frog — if the temperature is raised slowly the frog doesn’t notice, but if we put it directly in boiling water, for sure the frog will notice.
Drums are important because having good sound is important. Think about a building and imagine that the drums are its foundation. In modern music, the drums are fundamental in giving dynamics and flavor. If our drums sound bad, all the music will sound bad.
Choosing what is the best drum set for church means choosing the right drum set for your church. All situations are different and the needs of the different churches can change according to the size of the church, the overall equipment, the budget, and also the drummer’s ability to play at different dynamics.
We want to find what best suits our needs but without wasting money. I wouldn’t buy a Ferrari for a young driver, but at the same time, I wouldn’t get something that is cheap and will soon need to be replaced.
Understanding your need
In order to understand what is the best drum set for church we need to evaluate some things before spending unnecessary money.
Here are some questions to think about before investing any money:
- Does the worship team have a vision?
- How trained is the team and how trained is the drummer? If he is not very trained is he willing to improve in this area?
- How big is the church building?
- What equipment do you already have? Is there already a drum shield and microphones?
- How big is the budget?
Here I explain the motivation behind these questions
- Before investing money and time in a team I suggest that it is important that the team knows why they are serving and where they are going. A successful team is made up of committed people with a vision. The equipment comes later.
- Part of the team’s vision must be to be well prepared. In regard to the music, this involves having confidence and familiarity with your instrument. I always support the idea of having the best equipment, but if the members (or the drummer in our case) are not willing to invest in this area, I probably wouldn’t get the most expensive instrument. Or, let’s say we have a young drummer who has just started studying. At this point, I would buy something intermediate. An intermediate level instrument can give good satisfaction at a reasonable price.
- If the church building is not big and is lacking equipment, an electronic kit would probably be better. Otherwise, consider the money you will have to invest in a drum shield.
- If the community does not have any equipment, consider that if you buy an acoustic kit, you will likely need to buy a drum shield and microphones for the set. The price could end up being double.
- The budget will determine what choices are the best.
Two different roads
What is the best drum set for church? Let me show you two different but equally good paths. The choice depends on the road we want to take. All of these choices can lead to amazing results.
The previous questions helped us determine our starting point.
For example: if we already have a good drum shield, amazing microphones, and a good sound engineer, the only thing needed is a good drumset.
Instead, if we are lacking good equipment we might consider the purchase of an electronic kit. By the time we buy all that is required (drum set, cymbals, drum shield, microphones) we will have spent the same amount of money as buying a very good electronic kit.
Keep in mind the maintenance and the regulation of the sound on an electronic kit is much easier, but at the same time, to have a decent electronic kit we need to spend nearly $2000 vs a decent acoustic which usually costs around $1000 (without all the other items listed above). With a $2000 budget, there are good e-kits like the Roland td17 kvx.
Something to consider
If we decide to buy a drum shield and microphones it will likely also cost around $2000.
Also, we need to consider the cost of the cymbals which can go from a few hundred dollars for cheap cymbals (which I never recommend since they sound very bad and are very loud) all the way up to $1500-$1800 for the fancy ones. For the cymbals, consider that the brighter the sound, the louder they are, and the sound will cut more through the overall sound.
If starting from scratch, the kit plus the microphones, shield, and the cymbals will cost around $3500- $4000.
With this budget, we can purchase the Roland td27 kv which is an amazing electronic drum set. It allows us to handle the sound in a better way and costs around $3000.
When choosing an electronic drum kit with a bigger budget, you could spend up to $7000, but even at $5000, we can still get a super kit. It’s like choosing between a Ferrari or a Porshe.
Another option with a high budget could be to choose a good drum shield (or build a custom drum cage) with some good microphones and a professional acoustic drum kit. In this case, you need a good sound engineer to adjust all the levels of the drums in order for them to sound good.
There is no right or wrong when choosing what is the best drum set for church, but keep in mind that taking the road of the acoustic kit requires adjustments in order to have a quality sound for the congregation. If this is the case, having a good sound engineer is a must.
Something I strongly suggest not to do is to buy cheap electronic drum kits. These kits are not realistic to play, look like toys, and, most importantly, the drummer will likely be very frustrated when playing them. If the budget is not high I suggest buying a used drum kit and a used drum shield.
What is the best drum kit for church? – Recap and estimates
This article gives an idea of what to consider when choosing a direction — the electronic kit or the acoustic drum set.
Here I summarize some options for possible choices with the average cost of each situation.
With the acoustic kits
- Low Budget:
Cheap but decent drum set $700-$800
Cheap drum shield $500
Cheap microphones (if needed) $600
Medium cymbals $800-$1000
- Medium Budget
Medium range drum set $1000-$1200
Medium drum shield $700
Medium microphones $800-$1000
Medium cymbals $800-$1000
- High Budget
Professional drum kit $1500-$6000
Nice drum shield $700-$2000
Nice microphones $1500-$2000
Nice cymbals $1500-$2000
With the electronic kits
- Low budget $800-$1000 (I don’t recommend this type of investment)
- Medium budget $1700-$2000
- Medium-High $3000 (I believe this is the best solution)
- High budget $4500-$7000
Looking at these estimates helps us understand what is the best drum set for church according to our church and specific needs.
Here I have included just a few possible roads to take when buying a drumset. Keep in mind these are not the only solutions. At times we can find great used instruments that work perfectly. Also, we could combine the choices of the instruments. For example, get a good drum set with medium cymbals. It is up to you to see what fits the needs of your community.
Honestly, I think that electronic drums are becoming the best solution that requires the least amount of work and avoids the need for a shield. My church is a small community and has purchased the Roland TD 17 KVX. Playing it is not like an acoustic drum, but it does a pretty good job.
As I said before, I believe the best solution is the Roland td 27kv. With 3000 bucks you have a great kit without the need of spending $5000.
If you are interested,
You can find my reviews of electronic and acoustic kits in the
Tips and Reviews section.
I hope this article has helped you to understand what is the best drum set for church. Please leave any questions or comments below.
God bless you so much,
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