If you’re looking for the best drum mic kits online, then you might feel like you’re lost at sea. Don’t worry, you’re not alone. Drum mic kits range in size and price voluminously, and you might not be sure of what you need, how much you need to spend, or what you should even be looking for.
All of the manufacturers on this list have tried to give you a great mic kit package. The question is: Have they all succeeded? They offer their kits at wildly different prices, and it may be hard to know which one will truly suit your needs. Well, I came up with this article precisely to help you with that! So first, let’s learn about the basics.
Best Drum Mic Kits 2018 Compared
- CAD Audio TOURING7 Premium
- Shure PGADRUMKIT7 Mic Kit
- Pyle-Pro PDKM7 7 Mic Kit
- Shure DMK57-52 Mic Kit
- Lewitt DTP Beat Kit
- 1 Best Drum Mic Kits 2018 Compared
- 2 What To Look For In A Drum Mic Kit
- 3 Kit
- 4 1. CAD Audio Touring7 7-Piece Drum Mic Kit
- 5 2. Shure PGADrumKit7 7-Piece Mic Kit
- 6 3. Pyle-Pro PDKM7 7 Microphone Kit With Mounting
- 7 4. Shure DMK57-52 4-Piece Drum Mic Kit
- 8 5. Lewitt DTP Beat Kit Pro 7-Piece Mic Kit
- 9 Best Drum Mic Kits For Live Sound
- 10 Best Drum Mic Kits For Recording
What To Look For In A Drum Mic Kit
The first thing to consider is the size of the kit.
It’s not really about how much space it takes up, but how many pieces are included.
In general, every kit will include a large-diaphragm dynamic mic intended to be used for the kick drum. And it will include some mics meant for toms and snares. Beyond that, it is highly variable. Some kits will include overhead mics, while others will not. And while most good overhead mics are unidirectional condenser mics, not all of them are (and it may be important to learn the difference).
If you don’t already have any mics at all, then you will most likely need a 7-piece kit. If you already have at least one condenser mic to use overhead, then you can probably get away with a smaller kit.
Types of Mics
In general, there are two types of mics that are used for drums: condenser mics and dynamic mics.
Condenser mics are far more sensitive than dynamic mics and they are generally reserved for placement farther away from the kit, such as overhead. They also have a great high range, and so they are well-suited to capturing cymbal and hi-hat sounds.
Dynamic mics are usually used for snares, toms, and kick drums. These have a beefier tone and are less sensitive, suited well to being placed close to or inside of a drum without causing any issues.
Most of the mics you will use for drum kits are unidirectional, unlike the mics that singers use. This means that they take a signal in from one direction – straight ahead. The exception to this rule is the mics used for kick drums, which sometimes pick up sounds from two sides.
Finally, you need to consider the size of the diaphragm being used.
All of the mics you will need, except for the kick drum mic, are small diaphragm mics, meaning that they are smaller in size and have a smaller “opening” for sound to come in. Kick drum mics are generally larger.
You want to make sure that you are getting the right kinds of mics for the jobs that you need. If you have a mic that is suited to being used overhead already at your disposal, then you may consider going for a smaller kit that includes a large-diaphragm dynamic mic for the kick drum and a few small-diaphragm dynamic mics for the toms and snare.
If you’re looking for a quality set of drum mics at an affordable price, then the TOURING7 might be your best bet.
- 7-piece kit
- Includes one D12 dynamic large diaphragm kick drum mic
- Includes four TSM411 dynamic tom mics
- Includes two GXL1200 condenser mics for cymbals, hi-hats, and overheads
- Users repeatedly mention the TOURING7 having a great sound at a great price.
- Reviewers applaud both the live sound of these mics and their ability to perform in the studio.
- Overall, these mics are solid and of professional quality.
- Their price may be relatively low, but that just makes them one of the best choices on a budget.
- The TOURING7 kit includes everything needed to satisfy even the most discerning ears.
- Some reviewers cite an overall lack of sound quality indicative of a kit priced at this level.
- While many reviewers feel strongly that this is a great mic kit for the price, some feel as though it is better to buy a drum mic kit at a higher price point, presumably to get more out of your gear.
See It In Action:
2. Shure PGADrumKit7 7-Piece Mic Kit
Though slightly more expensive than the TOURING7, the Shure PGADrumKit series gives you a lot of bang for your buck.
Specifications (7-piece kit):
- Contains 7 pieces
- Includes one PGA52 cardioid dynamic kit drum mic
- Includes three PGA56 cardioid dynamic tom/snare mics
- Includes one PGA57 cardioid dynamic mic
- Includes two PGA81 cardioid condenser mic for cymbals, hi-hats, and overhead micing
- This kit comes in both 7 and 5-piece version.
- For both versions, reviewers cite a great overall sound, useful in the studio as well as in live situations.
- The price of the 7 piece kit is higher than the TOURING7, but it is by no means prohibitive, and users often say that it is a great deal for its price.
- In general, people have relatively few negative things to say about this kit. It is a solid all-around contender.
- Though most users do not have any real problems with this kit, some of them insist that it is an introductory kit.
- Some say that its price is lower than some other kits for the reason that it is in general not as high quality.
- What that means exactly is unclear, but even those reviewers who feel this way often stipulate that it is possible to get a great live sound out of these mics with the right EQing.
See It In Action:
The PDKM7 kit is a true introductory kit, extremely affordable. However, this kit might be the best you can get in its price range. If you’re on a real budget, these are some mics to consider.
- 7 microphones included
- One kick drum mic
- Four snare/tom mics
- Two overhead mics
- This kit is far less expensive than most of its neighbors, and since it is still of relatively high quality, it is a great deal. On reviewer called it “incredible” for its price.
- Users claim that it can be used effectively in a live situation when you’re on a budget and can produce some solid results.
- Some users even say they use it in the studio, and that with some good EQing, it rivals more expensive kits.
- Overall, this is a serious contender and a great kit, deserving of your consideration.
- Since it is designed for someone on a budget, this kit is not of the same quality as higher-end mic kits.
- Users praise its low price, but site its overall lack of clarity and sound quality as an issue.
- Most people think that it is possible to EQ the problems out, but that doesn’t mean that the problems aren’t there to begin with.
See It In Action:
This 4-piece drum mic kit offers high quality Shure gear at a price most people can afford. If you’re on a budget and you already have condenser mics for overhead use, then this kit might be a great option for you.
- 4-piece kit
- One Beta 52A kick drum mic
- Three SM57 mics (generally used for snares and toms)
- Reviewers agree, almost unanimously, that this package represents some of Shure’s finest gear.
- Shure is a huge name in microphones, and for good reason — these mics deliver high quality, clear, punchy sound that doesn’t always need as much EQing as some others.
- This kit, according to users, is great for both live and studio uses, although its small size (only 4 pieces) is conspicuous.
- The biggest con of this kit, according to most users, is that it doesn’t include condenser mics, which are traditionally used overhead.
- It is likely that this was a calculation on Shure’s part to keep the cost of the kit down, but if you don’t already have good overhead mics then it may be an issue for you.
See It In Action:
The Lewitt DTP Beat Kit Pro 7 is simply put among the cream of the crop. If you are looking for stellar audio quality, particularly for studio use, then this might be the kit for you.
- 7-piece kit
- All cardioid
- One DTP 640 Rex dual-element mic
- Three dynamic DTP 340 TT mics
- Two condenser LCT 340 mics
- One dynamic MTP 440 DM mic
- Reviewers agree in unison on this kit: It may cost most than other kits, but it is worth the money.
- People site it impressive clarity and punch, particularly in studio settings.
- This kit is designed to be used in a studio, where it can be EQed properly.
- It doesn’t always require too much in the way of effects.
- These mics give you big sound, big punch, and big clarity.
- You may pay big money, but if you can afford it, it is likely worth it.
- The biggest con here is the price. At over twice the price of the next most expensive kit on our list, this mic kit may be prohibitively expensive for some.
See It In Action:
Best Drum Mic Kits For Live Sound
It is difficult to say which mic kit will work best for everyone in every live situation. But in general, there is one kit that seems to outperform the others. For its time-tested reliability, the Shure DMK57-52 kit gets our “Best Drum Mic Kits For Live Sound” award.
SM57s are perhaps the most widely used unidirectional mics available, and drummers have been using them for decades with great results. All you need to do is find yourself one or two overhead condenser mics and you’re all set with this kit.
Best Drum Mic Kits For Recording
The Beat Kit Pro 7 stands as perhaps the best in its, and any, class for recording. There is simply no other kit on this list, and very few on the market in general, that can compete with its sound quality. For that reason, it earns our “Best Drum Mic Kits For Recording” award.
Did this article help you choose a drum mic kit? Or do you have experience in choosing or using drum mic kits?
If so, leave a comment below! I reply to every one of them!