I think you’ll agree with me that finding the right electronic drum set can be tough: there are so many good options out there.
And at some point it just doesn’t help to read yet another list of best electronic drum sets.
That’s why I’m focusing on only one electronic drum set with a very good price-performance ratio in this Yamaha DTX450K review.
I’m going to show you the pros and cons of this electronic drum set by answering the most frequently asked questions concerning that kit.
If you’re in a hurry and don’t want to read through the article as a whole, jump to the relevant question, or see my review at one glance at the bottom.
Yamaha DTX450K Review at One Glance
The Yamaha DTX450K electronic drum set is an an affordable and good-quality option for anyone just entering the world of electronic drum sets. It comes with some interesting features to make practicing effective and fun, and it will take you a good way in any home recording efforts. 48 reviews on Amazon rating the Yamaha DTX450K at 4 out of 5 stars accredit to its quality.
Sound quality9.0 /10
Sound range7.0 /10
Price / performance ratio7.0 /10
- Yamaha's high-quality sounds
- Module simple to handle
- 12 training functions on board
- Kick pad broad and sensitive enough for double pedal
- Limited number of preset kits (10)
- Can't choke cymbals by hand
- Looks slightly odd (arrangement of drums, hole in the cymbals)
What’s in the Box?
Depending on where you’d buy the Yamaha DTX450k electronic drum kit, you get more or less equipment included. The standard package that any shop offers includes:
- The DTX400 Drum module
- 1 three-zone snare pad (for head, rim and cross stick sounds)
- 3 single-zone tom pads (no rim shots, but respond to playing sensitivity)
- 1 Hi-hat pad
- 2 Cymbal-pads
- 1 Kick pad including the bass drum pedal (that’s a plus right here!)
- 1 Hi-Hat pedal
- A Power adapter
- All cables required to connect pads / cymbals to drum module
- Yamaha’s 1 year warranty against manufacturing defects
(For a more informed choice about headphones – a crucial part of an electronic kit – read about my pick of best headphones.)
Frequently Asked Questions
Sound quality and quantity of the DTX400 module?
The drum module is the “brain” of an electronic drum kit. If the brain sucks, the drum set will suck too.
Fortunately, Yamaha not only manufactures drum sets, but also keyboards, synthesizers, and music production software. So they have a lot of experience when it comes to sounds.
To me, the DTX450k sounds very good. But you can judge yourself:
This set comes with 297 sounds (169 drums and 127 percussion and other instruments). That should be enough for most beginners, as one whole drum set consists of only 8 different sounds (5 drums + 3 cymbals).
The sound range can be extended, but only when using the DTX450k alongside a computer (more about that in a second).
Yamaha has worked those sounds into 10 preset kits – from “rock” over “funk”, “jazz”, and “R&B” to pure “percussion”. This is not the world to choose from, but it includes all the basic musical styles. At the same time, you do have the option to replace the presets with your own configurations.
Can the Yamaha DTX450K do MIDI?
The DTX450k is an electronic drum kit and can be used as a MIDI controller. That means, you can plug the drum set into your computer or even a playstation or xbox and trigger specific functions on those machines (cable sold separately).
In the case of a computer with recording software (Audacity, Garage Band, Reaper, Ableton etc.), this renders your sound library virtually unlimited. You can use the DTX450k to trigger any set of sounds in your software. So the DTX450k could end up sounding like this:
What about recording?
That’s possible too. Either by plugging into a computer directly (as explained above), or by plugging the DTX450k into an audio interface (for advanced recording; cables not included).
But already without an interface you can get amazing results:
How Can the Yamaha DTX450K Help You Practice?
In my view, the DTX450k has quite a few cool features to make your drum practice more effective and fun:
- You can plug your iPod or any other mp3-player into the module and play along to the music (cable sold separately). And this can be just you and your headphones or pluged into an amp and for the world to hear.
- You can also use one of the module’s 12 training functions. My favorite, “Rhythm Gate”, is very good for practicing to play in time (and fun moreover):
Usually, this kind of feature comes only with much pricier electronic kits. Cool!
Are the pads loud?
The DTX450k’s pads are made of rubber (with a steel core). That doesn’t really mean they are loud, but is also doesn’t mean you can furiously hit them without producing any noise.
Anyone outside your headphones will hear a “thump” and there can be peaks of up to 60 decibels. That’s somewhat like hitting your sticks on the pages of an open book.
Should be okay for others in the house, but might be too much if they are in the same room or asleep next door.
Is Setting it Up Difficult?
I can only speak for ordering on Amazon. But from there the whole kit arrives in one box (around 90 x 60 x 45cm) and is easily put together. You only need the drum key (included) to tighten a good two dozen screws.
Adding toms / cymbals?
The DTX450k can handle 1 additional pad or cymbal. Contrary to most other kits, you plug the additional pad into the kick pad, but this works just fine. After that, you cannot add anything else.
Using double bass?
Yes – and you have two options here:
- Use preset kit number 3 (“hard rock”) where the hi-hat pedal is configured to be the second bass drum. Obviously you won’t feel a second beater hitting the kick pad, but it sounds exactly like a double bass should.
- Use a double bass pedal on the DTX450K’s kick pad. It is large enough. And it is sensitive enough to handle high BPMs (beats per minute).
Storing away the DTX450k?
Unless you have a huge closet, you’d have to at least disconnect the feet from the rack and then fold in the rack’s arms. This should take you around 10 minutes. But consider that frequent assembling / disassembling might cause screws etc. to wear out more quickly.
For storing under a bed, you’d likely have to disassemble everything so the kit becomes flat enough. That does take around 25 minutes.
The Yamaha DTX450K vs DTX400K
Is it worth spending the money for the DTX450K when you could also buy the cheaper DTX400K?
Like with everything in life: it depends on your priorities. I can only tell you the differences between the two (the module is the same for both):
- The DTX400K doesn’t allow for half-opened hi-hat sounds and the snare doesn’t support rim shots or rim clicks. Rim clicks aren’t too important, but you can hear half-open hi-hats in a lot of songs on the radio. And rim shots will be played in most live concerts you ever attend.
- The DTX400K has a kick pedal without beater and pad. This is good for your neighbors underneath, because it makes using the kick very quiet. At the same time, playing it will feel different from a regular bass drum pedal. In my view, this wouldn’t be a good start for someone new to drumming. But these are just my two cents.
Current Yamaha DTX450K Deals
Grab a used Yamah DTX450K in mint condition from a music retailer at 20% off! Spotted here on Amazon on August 22nd, 2016.
Did my Yamaha DTX450K review leave a question open? Or do you have a story / experience with this kit? Let us know in the comments! I reply 100% of the time!
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