A small electric drum set may be just the thing you need for your cramped practice space or tiny stage. They also have the added advantage of being much quieter than an acoustic set. While an electric drum set usually takes up less room than an acoustic set, there are a couple of electric drum sets available designed to be set up in a corner. Another option could be to take a normal sized digital drum set and trim it down either by reducing the number of components or literally cutting down the rack used to support them.
Yet another option still is to use a multi pad combined with a bass drum controller and a high hat controller. This may be the small option available. One advantage of a multi pad is that when you're playing out or at a gig, you can combine it with your acoustic drums to make a hybrid drum set. They can usually be programmed to provide a click, play a backing track for the rest of the band to play over, or used to trigger sound effects or loops adding tons of variety to your playing. More and more lately, bands are looking for drummers who have this capability in order to recreate on the stage a lot of today's modern music.
You could also get a tabletop drum set with foot pedals that can get the job done for a very affordable price. When you're done playing, put it away till next time.
None of these options will come with a drum throne, and you will need your own headphones and/or personal drum monitor amplifier to play out loud with other people.
The Roland TD-1K Small Electric Drum Set is one well equipped set for the money. It has dual zone chokeable cymbals and dual zone pads. The dual zone feature allows two different sounds per pad or cymbal depending on how hard you strike it. It is set up like a traditional 5 piece and has 15 different preprogrammed drum sets built in along with 15 different play along tracks. You can hook up to your computer with a USB cable to record that way, or it also has the ability to record directly to the easy to use control module for playback to analyze your playing. The metronome feature has some great learning tools built in. For example, one setting will tell you graphically when you are dragging or speeding up while you play along with it. All-in-all more features and playability than I expected from its size and price range.
The Carlsbro CSD 130 is a less expensive option, but has some nice features of its own. Only the snare pad is dual zone in this set, but both the cymbal pads are chokeable. The bass drum pedal is much more like a real bass drum pedal from an acoustic drum set for a more realistic feel. It has 20 preprogrammed drum kits built in an options to program 10 of your own kits as well as 20 play along tracks. There are USB and MIDI outputs for expansion. All-in-all a decently equipped small electric drum set for the money.
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