The 5 Best Jazz Drum Sets Reviews

Congratulations, you’ve finally decided to buy the best jazz drum sets and show the world what you’re capable of. Jazz drumming isn’t like heavy metal or rock though and needs a unique approach to be successful.

That also means you need a drum set that is designed for jazz as an ordinary set won’t do. With literally thousands of these drum sets online it can be overwhelming.

I have spent years playing jazz drums so I’m in a good position to determine which ones are good and which are not. I used that experience in selecting the top jazz drum kits.

Top 5 Jazz Drum Sets: Comparison Chart

Product
Drums
Cymbals Included
Other Features
View ON Amazon
Bass drum, mounted tom, floor tom, snare
Ride cymbal & stand and hi hat cymbals & stand
Drum key, drum sticks, drum throne
Snare, floor tom, mounted tom, bass drum
No
Sonor 45 Degree Bearing Edge, cross laminated shells
Snare, floor tom, 2x rack tom, kick
No
Floor tom legs, 100% birch drum, YESS tom mounts,
Snare, 2x floor toms, 3x mounted toms, big bass,
No
10-ply Snare Shells, Graduated Counter Hoops, True-Pitch Tension Rods
Snare, mounted tom, floor tom, bass
Yes
Tom holder, drum throne, bass drum pedal

Best Picks of Jazz Drum Sets

#1: Gammon Percussion Full Size Complete Adult 5 Piece Drum Set with Cymbals Stands Stool and Sticks, Black

One of the problems with beginners’ sets is you get a small jazz drum kit, and you’ll need to buy more drums or hardware. With the Gammon you get everything that a child or adult drummer needs.

The set includes all five drums – floor tom, snare drum, bass drum and a couple of mounted toms. The set also includes a drum key, pedals, sticks, a stool, stands, a ride cymbal and a high hat cymbal.

Gammon Percussion Full Size Complete Adult 5 Piece Drum Set with Cymbals Stands Stool and Sticks, Black
  • Full Size Complete Drum Set with Everything Included
  • Hi-Hat & Crash Cymbals Sticks Stool Stands all Included
  • Everything You Need To Play Professonial Size Set - Nothing Else To Buy
  • High Gloss Black Finish - Chain Driven Pedals
  • Best Seller - Ships Fast - Best Value - Best Price

Last update on 2020-05-03 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The cymbals come with a stand each and the drum sticks are included too. When Gammon said the set came with everything they meant it.

Not only is the set complete, but the drums and cymbals sound great. While this is for beginners the quality is higher than others in its range.

If you’re new to jazz drums, the Gammon has all the stuff you need to start drumming. All the pieces are made of quality materials and can handle a lot of heavy drumming.

The cymbals sound great and so do the drums. Pound the stick and you will realize just how good the sound is considering the set is for beginners.

The individual drums – as is the set – is light, and that makes set up easier. That doesn’t mean it is low quality as it’s well built.

The set also comes with a DVD to help you get started on drumming. While the set excels at jazz, you can also use this for rock, metal and other types of music.

Highlighted Features
  • Full size drum with all the essentials
  • Chain driven pedals
  • Glossy finish
  • Stool stand included
  • Made from good materials
  • Excellent sound
  • Durable sticks
  • Easy to set up

#2: Sonor Drums SSE 12 SAFARI C1 BGS 4-Piece Drum Set with Black Galaxy Sparkle Finish

This jazz drum set for beginners includes a tom holder, a 14″ x 5″ snare drum, a 14″ x 12″ floor tom and a 10″ x 8″ tom tom. Unlike other all purpose drum kits, the Safari is designed for jazz, though usable for other genres.

The drum shells are built from basswood, giving them strength and resonance. Drumming produces a bright, vivid sound that’s ideal for jazz.

Sonor Drums SSE 12 SAFARI C1 BGS 4-Piece Drum Set with Black Galaxy Sparkle Finish
  • 16" x 16" Bass Drum 10" x 8" Tom Tom 14" x 12" Floor Tom 14" x 5" Snare Drum
  • A 45 Degree Bearing Edge which is an important component of the signature SONOR sound.
  • Tune Safe lugs from SONOR
  • Cross-laminated shells for superior stiffness, sonically pleasing resonance and spectacular tone.

Last update on 2020-05-03 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The snare drum has a lot of power and it complements the other drums in the set. There are no cymbals here, but with the flexibility of the drums you won’t miss them much.

All the drum pieces are durably made and can handle extended use. This 4 piece set is ideal for gigs as well as sessions, practice or just having fun.

The portable nature of the set means it’s easier to set up than other kits. Once you’re done playing, pack it up and you’re ready to hit the road. The drums have a Black Galaxy Sparkle finish, and there’s a red variant too.

For proper positioning of the kick pedal, a riser attachment is provided. Going back to the drums, the shells have cross lamination for a clearer tone, better resonance and more stiffness.

The snares, floor toms and bass drums are cross laminated, and each piece is engineered to precision. The set also has the distinct Sonor sound that makes it fun to play and easy to use.

This 4 piece set is easy to set up, and they’re light enough for children and young musicians to haul around.

Highlighted Features
  • Good resonance
  • Consistent tone
  • 45 degree bearing edge
  • Portable
  • Beautifully designed
  • Made for rehearsals and gigs
  • Full sized snare drum
  • Drum sticks included

#3: Yamaha Stage Custom Birch 5pc Drum Shell Pack – 22″ Kick, Cranberry Red

This is a 5 piece Yamaha jazz drum set that’s designed for drummers looking for quality sound. Yamaha has developed a reputation for making outstanding drums and this set exemplifies that.

The set consists of a 14×5.5 snare, 16×15 floor tom, 12×8 rack tom, 10×7 rack tom and a 22×17 kick. The hardware includes 3 floor tom legs and a TH-945B 3-hole receiver with two YESS tom mounts.

Yamaha Stage Custom Birch 5pc Drum Shell Pack - 22" Kick, Cranberry Red
  • Included Drums: 22x17 kick, 10x7 rack tom, 12x8 rack tom, 16x15 floor tom, 14x5.5 snare
  • Included Hardware: TH-945B 3-hole receiver with (2) YESS tom mounts, (3) floor tom legs
  • 100% birch drum shells with air seal system
  • 45-Degree bearing edges and Absolute-style lugs
  • No cymbals, stands, or kick pedal, or throne included

Last update on 2020-05-03 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Setting up the kit doesn’t take too long and you’ll be pounding away at the drums immediately. The sound is deep, bright and clear, and its versatility allows you to drum as loudly or subtly as necessary.

The Stage Custom is built or the drum novice, though the power should satisfy even the pros. The shell uses 100% birch and that is what allows it to produce that resonance or rumble.

The Stage Custom drum kit have six ply structure and a glossy finish, given the set a stylish, professional look. Aside from the aesthetics, the drums are precise and the vibrations exactly what you’d expect from high quality drums.

Pound the drums and you’’ll hear its punchy, warm tone, and with the YESS mount there is enhanced sustain and resonance. To reduce the noise, die cast claw hooks with insertion plates are implemented.

The Stage Custom drum kits have always been known for their durability. However this set has revamped bass drum legs to prevent slippage.

The Stage Custom drum kit also comes with stoppers for easier set up for faster play and use.

Highlighted Features
  • Different kick size options
  • Absolute style lugs
  • 45 degree bearing edges
  • 3 floor tom legs
  • 2 tom mounts
  • 5 piece drum set
  • 100% birch
  • Die cast claw hooks

#4: PDP By DW 7-Piece Concept Maple Shell Pack with Chrome Hardware Pearlescent White

If you’re looking for a jazz drum set for sale, the 7-Piece Concept Maple Shell Pack should be up there on your watchlist. This is a complete set that should appeal as much to the student as to the drum purist.

This jazz drum set includes a 6″ x 14″ snare drum, 6″ x 16″ and 14 x 14” floor toms, 7″ x 8″ mounted toms, 8″ x 10″, 9″ x 12” toms, an 18” x 22” bass drum and sticks.

This drum kit is ideal for jazz because it comes with different tops. The key to jazz is having multiple toms as it gives you more variety. As the feature list above shows, the PDP Concept Series comes with plenty of toms.

PDP By DW 7-Piece Concept Maple Shell Pack with Chrome Hardware Pearlescent White
  • Dual-Turret Lug, True-Pitch Tension Rods and Die-Cast Claw Hooks
  • Graduated Counter Hoops
  • 7-ply Tom/Kick Shells and 10-ply Snare Shells
  • MAG Throw-Off and Fully Chromed Snare Wires w/ Carbon Steel Coils and Brass End Plates
  • Stands and Cymbals Not Included

Last update on 2020-05-03 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The set also includes cymbals so you can customize the sound the way you want. Apart from having lots of drums and toms, the kit also includes Suspension Tom Mounts, long lasting lacquer finish and counter loops.

Its die cast low mass claw hooks are top of the line and the kit is made of high quality materials.

The PDP drum kit also uses FAST tom sizing, True Pitch tuning and DW type STM mounts for warm, punchy sounds.

The Concept series are versatile enough to be used for jamming, live shows and practices.  With options for an all birch or all maple, Remo heads and outstanding quality, the Concept drum series stands out.

The PDP Series was built from the ground up for jazz and it shows in the quality and built.

Highlighted Features
  • Brass end plates
  • Chromed snare wires
  • 10 ply snare shells
  • Graduated counter hoops
  • Die cast claw hooks
  • True pitch tension rods
  • Dual turret lug
  • Suspension tom mounts

#5: Pearl RS584CC31 Roadshow 4-Piece Drum Set, Jet Black

Pearl has been making a lot classic entry level drums, and the Roadshow is one of the top jazz drum set for aspiring drummers. Living up to its name, the Roadshow has all the stuff you need to hit the road.

The kit includes a 15×5 snare, 14×1 floor tom, 1×7 tom and an 18×12 bass drum. You also get a 14″ hybrid hi-hat cymbal and a 16″ brass crash-ride cymbals.

The hardware includes a tom holder, throne, bass drum pedal, snare, a hi hat stand and a boom cymbal stand. All the hardware is double braced for protection.

Pearl RS584CC31 Roadshow 4-Piece Drum Set, Jet Black
  • Ready to rock right out of the box!
  • 9 ply, 7mm Poplar Shells & 1.2mm Triple Flanged hoops. Comes with Heads and Double Braced Hardware.
  • Drums Included: 18x12 Bass Drum, 1x7 Tom, 14x1 Floor Tom, 13x5 Snare
  • Cymbals Included: 16" Brass Crash-Ride, 14" Hybrid Hi-Hats
  • Hardware Included: Boom Cymbal Stand, Hi-Hat Stand, Snare Stand, Bass Drum Pedal, Throne, Tom Holder

Last update on 2020-05-03 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The Roadshow drum kit is available in four unique finishes and multiple set up options. All the toms, the bass and snare drum use a 9 poplar shell to give it a more powerful sound.

The Roadshow is aimed at beginners true, but it does have professional level features like locking geared stands and a chain driven bass drum pedal. With these specs you’ll be assured the drums have what it takes to last.

The kit comes with a drum key that lets you fasten the drum faces, and the bundled throne is well designed. As a full featured kit, the Roadshow is ideal for fusion and jazz.

This is a comprehensive drum kit with all the trimmings and more. The drums tune easily and the hardware is solidly built.

The throne is a nice addition and is comfortable to use. The drum sticks serve their purpose and the kick pedal is impressive. Overall, a high quality drum kit.

Highlighted Features
  • Hardware and throne included
  • 9 ply poplar shells
  • Excellent tone
  • Cymbals included
  • Easy set up
  • Chain drive bass drum
  • Fortified brace legs
  • Stick bag included

 

What are Jazz Drum Sets?

A jazz drum set is a type of drum kit designed specifically for jazz.  You may use this drum kit in some rock music, but rock drum kits aren’t suitable for jazz.

A rock drum kit puts emphasis on projection and power, but a jazz musician needs to stand out among a sea of horns or blend in with the bass. Jazz drum sets are smaller but utilize more sounds.

There are different types of jazz drum sets, 4 piece, 5 piece, 7 piece or more. They are however, lighter than the typical rock drum set..

What Type of Drums are Used in Jazz?

Most jazz musicians use an 18” or 20” bass drum, 14” floor, 12” rack tom and 14” wood snare. Some of these kits come with cymbals, but the emphasis is usually the toms.

Jazz drums are tuned high, with the top and bottom having an open sound. The majority of these drums have coated heads because the tone is rich and clear.

Jazz cymbals are also different from the standard crash and splash. Instead they’re more diverse and have more varied tones.

The drums, snare and cymbals are used together to add definition to the tone and range.

Jazz drums have a simpler set up than rock drum sets, but they’re just as flexible when it comes to performance and quality.

Jazz drum kits are no longer as large as they used to be, but the power and versatility are still there.

How to Choose a Jazz Drum Set

Drums

Aside from the sizes mentioned above, you can use others as well. The drum set should be designed for jazz or the all purpose type, but the depth and size is up to you.

For beginners you may be happy with a 16” bass, or maybe go big with a 20” or 22”. You may opt for fusion or power specs or combine an 8” rack tom with an 18” or 16” floor tom.

Cymbals

Jazz benefits more from a vintage sound, that is slow, washy and full, as opposed to rapid cymbals. In modern jazz the preference is for cymbals with an earthy, dry tone, very little ping and heavy on the stick.

If you want more classic tones, go for 1950s style cymbals. If your drum kit doesn’t come with cymbals, get some that matches the tune you’re trying to attain.

Snare

Your drum kit comes with a snare and that should complement the rest of the kit. Snare drums can be ringing and high or thick with a thudding sound. A deeper snare works in some cases though most jazz drum set have a tight head with a thick sound.

Hardware

Most jazz drum kits have a sleek look, with vintage type or wood lacquer wraps. The required hardware is included and it also has low profile lugs.

Shell

Shell thickness plays a vital role in determining sound quality. The thicker the shell the more powerful the attack and punch.

A thin shell gives the drum more tone and a more rounded sound. Thin shells are often used in jazz, but a thicker shell may be suitable depending on your music style.

Heads

2 ply heads is standard in modern rock,  but a single ply is preferable for jazz.

Top Jazz Drum Set Brands

Pacific Drums

Pacific Drums have become known for their diverse and well made drums for students, amateurs and professionals. Their drum kits are made from quality materials and suited for jazz and other genres.

Sonor

The Sonor sound is distinct, smooth and clear, just what you need when playing jazz. Through the years, the company has made a lot of quality drum kits to satisfy the demands of jazz musicians everywhere.

Gammon

Gammon has quickly earned a loyal following because of its quality drums. Their drum kits come in a diverse range of sizes and specs so whether you’re a student or not, you can be confident of these drums’ versatility.

Final Verdict

All right, so there you have the top 5 jazz drum sets. But now the big question: which one is the best?

After careful consideration I have to give it to the PDP by DW 7-Piece Concept Maple Shell Pack. It is the complete package, with all the drums, cymbals and hardware you need to get started.

The PDP Concept drums also have excellent tone and are made of high quality materials. Compared to other drum kits, the PDP offers more value for your money. For that and the other reasons cited here, it gets my vote as the best of the best jazz drum sets.

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