So you’re looking for a junior starter drum kit? But you’ve never cared much about hoops, loops, kick drum, floor tom, drum heads, hi hats, drum shells, or shell sizes? In that case, I’d love to help you out with this best drum set for kids reviews.
What’s the Best Junior Drum Set for Kids in 2019?
- Sound of the drums are exceptional
- Excellent value at a low price tag
Information about suitable age reange, important aspects, and my personal best starter drum set for kids as well as other complete junior drum sets – it’s all in here.
And I know these recommendations “work”, because I’ve tested them with dozens of my students and their parents.
These are top sellers that all have excellent customer ratings. Plus, these junior starter drum all come with their own kick pedal, drum thrones and drum sticks, and will be ready to use out of the box. So your child can start playing drums right away!
One word of caution though: if you’re already dreading the noise your child is going to cause with a drum kit, check out my electronic drum set recommendations.
They are much quieter than acoustic drum sets – and not necessarily more expensive. If, on the other hand, you only want to see the cheapest drum kit options for kids, go here.
At a Glance: Best Kids & Junior Drum Sets To Buy
- Best Overall: Questlove Pocket Kit
- Best Toddler Drum Set: Mendini Junior Drum Set
- Best Budget Drum Set for Kids: Gammon Percussion Junior Drum Set
- Best for 8-10 Year Old: RockJam 3-Piece Junior Drum Set
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Table of Contents
- What’s the Best Junior Drum Set for Kids in 2019?
- At a Glance: Best Kids & Junior Drum Sets To Buy
- 7. Mendini 3-Piece Kids Drum Set
- 8. Music Alley Kids 3 Piece Beginners Drum Kit
- 9. Eastar 3-Piece Kids Drum Set
- 10. Ashthorpe 5-Piece Complete Kid’s Junior Drum Set
- 11. Pacific Drums PDP Junior 5-Piece Drum Set
- 12. First Act Discovery Drum Set
- 13. Best Choice Products 3-Piece Drum Set Best Cheap Kids Drum Kit
- 14. Ashthorpe 3-Piece Junior Drum Set
- 15. Eastar Teen Drum Set
- 16. Best Choice 3-Piece Kids Beginner Drum Set
- The Different Types of Drum Sets for Children
- What to Look for in the Best Junior Drum Set
1. Mendini 16-Inch 3 Piece Drum Set
- Excellent starter kit for children
- Assembly is easy to perform with the manual provided
- Sound quality is not bad for a junior drum kit
- Durable and sturdy hardware
- Low-quality cymbal
Verdict: This is an excellent starter drum kit, but if your child develops a better interest in drumming, you may want to upgrade to a complete 5-piece set.
2. Eastar 14-Inch 3 Piece Kids Drum Set
This kids’ drum set is not a toy drum and should not even be compared with one. Eastar is a brand known for high-quality drum sets such as this one. As to sound, the cymbal is excellent, so it also is the tom and bass. The drum skins vibrate uniformly and wonderfully. There is a key included so you can tighten and adjust the drum heads properly.
Eastar drums are made of wood with plastic heads and metal hardware. The metal parts were passed through a high level of electroplating to ensure the appearance is not treated lightly. On observing the drum set, you know the parts are not going to come apart any time soon. Concerning the drum set specifications in inches, there is a 14 x 10 bass drum, a 10 x 5 snare with a loud sound, and an 8 x 6 tom. There are two pairs of drumsticks included, one for the kid and another for the teaching adult.
- When tuned correctly, the drums have excellent sound quality.
- Well-made drums
- Has a 12-month warranty
- Very affordable
- Has only one cymbal
My verdict: Considering the price and good quality, this drum set is well recommended as a mini version of professional drum sets for young drum enthusiasts.
3. Mendini Junior 5piece Complete Kit- Best on a Budget
- Cheapest complete drum junior sized set on the market
- This set includes everything needed to start playing
- Surprisingly good sound for a junior kids set
- Low-quality cymbals and hihat
The Mendini by Cecilio junior drum set is the cheapest drum set for kids that’s actually useful (for the setup reason above). Why?
As you might hear, the sound potential is very similar to that of the Gammon Junior 5 piece complete set. And the same goes for price and hardware durability.
The only thing that sets the two drum sets apart is that the Mendini kit comes in 6 color options. That’s not a huge difference, but from my experience, color can influence a child’s motivation to practice.
4. Questlove Pocket Kit – My Best Drum Set for Kids 2018
- All the necessary components are included to start drumming immediately
- Sound of the drums are exceptional for the price
- Video instructions and playing tips are included
- Drum heads will require upgrading for optimal sound
- Cymbals are low quality and may need replacement as you advance
The Questlove Pocket kit by Ludwig is targeted towards the beginning drummer who needs a complete drumkit that is durable, sounds good and can be used right away. The suggested user for this kit is 4-10 years of age but the Questlove Pocket Kit could actually be played as a cocktail kit (i.e. a portable drum set) by a gigging drummer in a pinch. That says a lot about what can be accomplished with this little drum kit.
With the Ludwig Questlove Pocket kit, drummer legend Ahmir Khalib “Questlove” Thompson aimed to create a drum set that would provide a full-scale playing experience for young drummers and the Questlove hits a bullseye with a quality-to-price ratio that fits just about any budget.
The hardwood drum shells are durable and sound surprisingly good for a kit at this price point. (Check out the video provided below and judge for yourself.) And with some tuning experimentation along with some drum head upgrades, the Questlove Pocket Kit will sound exceptionally good. (For the drum head upgrades, see the “Making a Junior Drum Set Sound Fabulous” section below.)
5. GP Percussion GP50MRB Junior Drum Set
This 3-piece drum set of bass, snare, and tom includes hi-hat and a cymbal, which makes it unique compared to other brands for kids. It sounds quite well for a junior drum set, and if your child is immersed in drumming, it will be one of your best investments.
- Includes a junior hi-hat cymbal
- Ideal for kids aged 3 – 10
- Assembling is straightforward
- Cymbal is of low quality.
Verdict: GP Percussion is a well-respected brand in Junior drum sets, and they have a name for making the right products that do not disappoint.
6. Best for 8-10-Year-Old – RockJam 3-Piece Junior Drum Set
- Very durable and sturdy drum set
- Features a snare drum
- High-quality drums
- Standalone snare drum
- Has instructions for easy assembling
- Sound is unique and professional
- Great value for money
- Foot pedal might be quite stiff for a child
- Drums could be quite loud depending on how tightly screwed you make it
- Quite small for older children
It features a bass drum with a chain-driven foot pedal and four lugs to keep it steady. The bass drum is also known as a kick drum, and it produces low tones when played with a foot pedal. You may find your child getting attached to the RockJam junior drum set, which features a snare drum that can be played independently without needing other drums.
Included in the set is a small-sized pair of wooden drum sticks that are light and perfect for your kid’s small hands but still very durable. Other parts are a hanging or mounted tom-tom, crash cymbals that make exciting sounds when played, stands to keep the drums, and an adjustable cushioned drum throne for your kid to sit on and enjoy.
The quality of the RockJam is unmatched. The drum heads are easy to tune with the key, and when tuned right, the sound is pretty cool for a child drum set.
7. Mendini 3-Piece Kids Drum Set
Like its larger 5-piece cousin, the Mendini 3-Piece Kids Drum Set offers a good value. Ideal for kids who are just getting started with drums and designed to fit those between the ages of about three and six years old, it comes with an 8” x 13” bass drum, bass drum pedal, 6” x 8” mounted tom, 8” cymbal, and 4” x 10” mounted snare. The kit includes everything your child needs to start playing right away including a padded throne and a pair of wooden drumsticks.
- Complete junior drum set with bass, tom, and snare
- Cymbal and cymbal arm included, along with drum throne and drumsticks
- Available in five different colors
8. Music Alley Kids 3 Piece Beginners Drum Kit
Looking for an awesome value? If so, you’ll want to take a closer look at this 3-pice drum kit from Music Alley. While it doesn’t come with a snare, it does include two hanging toms and a bass drum with pedal, as well as a mounted cymbal. A foldable drum throne and a pair of drumsticks come with the set, so your junior drummer can start playing right away.
- Two hanging toms, bass, and cymbal
- Drum throne and sticks included
- Available in blue, red, and black colors
9. Eastar 3-Piece Kids Drum Set
The Eastar 3-Piece Kids Drum Set offers better quality than many other junior models, yet they’re surprisingly affordable. This junior drum kit includes a bass with pedal, a snare with its own stand, and a hanging tom. A cymbal, a foldable drum throne, and wooden drumsticks are included. Made with poplar, these drums have high-quality drum skins for a bright, pleasing sound. A one-year warranty is included.
- Adjustable height snare stand
- Adjustable height, foldable drum throne
- Quality components including real wood drum bodies
- Comes in three different colors
10. Ashthorpe 5-Piece Complete Kid’s Junior Drum Set
If your junior drummer is ready to move into a better drum kit, but not quite ready for an adult sized one, you’ll want to put this drum set from Ashthorpe on your shortlist. With two mounted toms, a floor tom, a snare, a bass, pedals, a crash cymbal, and hi-hat cymbals, it includes a drum throne, sticks, and a drum adjustment key. This drum is designed to fit most kids between the ages of three to twelve. There are six colors to choose from.
- Solid poplar wood drum bodies
- Top-quality chrome hardware and accents
- Adjustable height throne, snare stand, and hi-hat
- Real brass cymbals
11. Pacific Drums PDP Junior 5-Piece Drum Set
The PDP junior drum set has all the right selling points. It is a complete set with very decent hi-hats and crash cymbals that can be easily upgraded if required. Other parts of the drum set include a kick drum, snare drum, two mounted toms, a floor tom, a crash cymbal, and a hi-hat with a stand. The necessary accessories, such as two drumsticks, are included. The kit is made of hardwood, has the same positioning as normal-sized drum sets, and is durable. Setting up the drums may be a bit tricky, but a setup DVD is included. The drum heads have a great sound that will be appreciated by a skilled drummer, let alone a beginner.
- Hi-hat and bass drum pedals feature chains instead of straps.
- Durable drums, stands, and drumsticks
- Suitable for a beginner young drummer
12. First Act Discovery Drum Set
One of the few affordable drum sets available in pink color; this is an excellent gift for a young girl drummer. The First Act Discovery drum set is an acoustic percussion instrument that will get your child’s creative juice flowing. It is a 3-piece model with a bass drum, snare, tom, cymbal, tuning key, a pair of drumsticks and a drum throne. There is a Color and Shape Learning Guide included that you can use to teach your child how to make real beats. For easy assembling, the drums are pre-assembled on purchase. The drum seat can also be folded up and easily stored away.
- Drums are pre-assembled on delivery.
- Ideal for kids above six years’ old
- Available in pink and blue colors
13. Best Choice Products 3-Piece Drum Set Best Cheap Kids Drum Kit
Best Choice Products have designed this affordable drum set for the young drummers. The drum is a 3-piece model, and it comprises a bass drum, two toms, a pair of drumsticks, a brass cymbal, cushioned drum stool, and a drum pedal. It is made of an all-wood shell material that will last you till your child requires upgrades or adult drum sets. The hardware is plated in premium quality chrome and is available in two colors. Though made of low-quality metal, the cymbal will last for some time before your child begins to differentiate between the sounds made by a high-quality cymbal and the one in this set. All in all, this drum set makes for an excellent gift for a child with interest in drums.
- Great sound
- Easily accessible hardware
14. Ashthorpe 3-Piece Junior Drum Set
A great little drum set for kids between the ages of 3 and 8, this 3-piece kit from Ashthorpe includes a bass drum with a pedal, a mounted snare with internal wires and adjustable tension, and a mounted tom. A mounted crash cymbal, a drum adjustment key, a padded adjustable drum throne, and a set of drumsticks let kids start playing as soon as the kit has been assembled.
- Compact size, perfect for young kids & small spaces
- Poplar hardwood drum shells
- Attractive chrome hardware / accents
- Comes in 5 colors
15. Eastar Teen Drum Set
This 5-piece drum kit from Eastar is the right size for teens and is designed with the needs of beginning to intermediate drummers in mind. Moderate pricing makes this an attractive option – plus it comes with all the necessary components for getting started including a sturdy drum throne with a 330-pound capacity. A bass drum, two hanging toms, a floor tom, a snare drum, a crash / ride cymbal, and a hi-hat are included, along with pedals for the bass and hi-hat. You even get two pairs of drumsticks.
- Ideal for taller pre-teens and teens who have outgrown kid size drum sets
- Adjustable height stands
- Sturdy components
- Quality drum skins
16. Best Choice 3-Piece Kids Beginner Drum Set
If you think your child has an aptitude for drumming but you’re not ready to make much of an investment until they’ve given it a try, you’ll want to take a look at this inexpensive 3-piece beginner set from Best Choice. There is nothing fancy about this set, but the components are of decent quality and it comes with everything your child needs to get their feet wet including a bass drum with pedal, 2 toms, a ride cymbal, drumsticks, and a height-adjustable drum throne. This kit fits average sized children between the ages of three and seven.
- Wood drum shells
- Chrome-plated hardware
- Adjustable stands
- Compact size
The Different Types of Drum Sets for Children
Music is an art cherished by both young and old, from the singing to the instruments. Due to the love of music by every age, music instruments for kids have flooded the market. There are various junior acoustic drum sets for young children, including the 3-piece and the 5-piece kits.
These drum sets are equipped with the essential pieces necessary for proper drum learning, like a cymbal, a hi-hat, a kick drum, a snare, and one to three toms, as well as drumsticks, stands, and a drum key for tuning.
Most people are beginning to consider the virtual and electronic options which can be connected to apps and other specialized equipment to produce excellent sounds. The type of drum set to purchase should depend on your budget and the interest your child has for music.
What to Look for in the Best Junior Drum Set
I’ve craved writing this section for a long time – for there are so many junior drum kits out there being sold as a musical instrument that in truth are only toys not really playable.
So in this section you’ll learn
- to distinguish those toys from the real deal
- how to make a kids drum set sound fabulous
- who a junior drum kit is for
- and much more
Who Are Junior Drum Sets For?
No, this is not about age! After all, a 6 year old child could be any size, and size is the thing that actually matters. It’s about whether your child can comfortably reach the bass drum pedal and the cymbal (highest and lowest points of the drum set) while sitting on the drum throne.
These junior drum sets will work best if he / she is between 2.5 ft and 5 ft. Shorter will result in stretching (but he/she will at least be growing into the set). Taller is a no-go, because it will result in unhealthy squatting and will obviously get worse in time.
So, if your child is taller than 5 ft or quickly approaching that mark, I recommend you consider going for a full size beginner drum set in the first place. You can check out this article for my best full size beginner drum sets
Some Drum Sets for Kids Are Useless
I want you to buy a drum set for your child that’s actually useful, so I’ve skipped over any junior drum kits that looks like this:
Yes, this 3piece junior kit is dirt cheap and that may be tempting. If you’re not very familiar with drums, it might not matter to you, but note the difference to a regular adult drum set (it’s not about the polish on the cymbals or the metallic blue color):
The 3piece junior set in the first photo is basically drums with small cymbal attached. It is missing many parts compared to a complete full size kit. Actually, it is more like a toy drum and not a real musical instrument, as it doesn’t even have a decent cymbals stand. With that cheap toy drum, your child will not be able to internalize many motions essential to drumming. In effect, your child would miss out on the opportunity to playfully pick up the right motions from the very beginning.
And all these drum sets I’ve reviewed here do provide this opportunity, because they are set up like the above standard complete full size adult drum set. If you are serious in finding a worthy childrens drum set, then consider one of the choice products featured in this review.
Making a Junior Drum Set Sound Fabulous
…I said this won’t be important to the absolute beginner and I stand by it. Still, changing heads or cymbals might become important once your child gets really good and still hasn’t outgrown his/her junior drum set. When that’s the case, you’ll know where to look.
Looking for Alternatives?
Again, if your child is taller than 5ft or will soon be taller than that, I recommend you look for a complete full size drum set for beginners instead.
Have a Question?
Finally, I’d love to hear about your personal experience with junior drum kits and related products– if you’re looking for replacement parts for snare drums, floor toms, foot pedals, or if you have any issues and questions concerning these… Let me know in the comments. I’ll respond 100% of the time.
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