Over the past few weeks I have been busy building my home studio up, replacing or purchasing some key elements that have been missing. One thing that has always been somewhat of a barrier is how to get an authentic drum recording without spending thousands of pounds and annoying the neighbours. It had been a long time since I had investigated electronic drum kits but it was time to take the plunge again. What could you get for less than £500?
A couple of names instantly came to mind, Roland and Yamaha. Roland probably the industry standard for edrums, and Yamaha have emerged as a viable contender to most. Both offer great solutions but nothing really suitable within budget. After a little Googling I was interested in what Alesis had to offer. I have used a number of Alesis products over the years, mainly their MultiMix Firewire products and have always been impressed by their ability to produce high quality products at reasonable prices. A few years ago I would have put Behringer into the same category, but after numerous disappointments due to durability and reliability I probably will never buy another Behringer product. Alesis on the other hand? Well I’ve seen a Alesis MultiMix16 Firewire get hammered in the studio 3-4 a week, every week since release. It’s been dropped, drowned in lager and generally abused and is still ticking and sounding great! Could their edrums match up to my high expectations?
Alesis have a number of offerings all based on 3 different drum modules. The DM6 at the bottom of the range, the DM8 in the middle and the DM10 at their top end. It is worth mentioning that all of these kits come in under £1000 which is surprising. All the kits feature 2 distinct types of drum heads and cymbals. The realistic feeling Surge Cymbals and RealHead drums and the standard rubber versions. I’ll go into more detail later. However for me a few things limited my decision.
- I live in an apartment, the kit needed to be as quiet as possible!
- I had just bought a digital piano the same week so had seriously limited my budget! More on that piano in another review!
I managed to find an ex-display DM6 Usb Kit for the bargain price of £275, so after many hours on reviews and YouTube I bit the bullet and ordered. There are 2 DM6 kits, the DM6 USB Kit and the DM6 USB Express Kit. The major difference between the 2 being the number of pads you get. The USB comes with the full set, whilst the Express as you would expect is a cut down version.
What you get
Inside the box:
- 1 x DM6 drum sound module
- 1 x DMPad Kick Pad with stand
- 1 x DMPedal single kick pedal
- 1 x DMHat Pedal hi-hat pedal
- 1 x DMPad 8″ Dual-Zone Pad
- 3 x DMPad 8″ Single-Zone Pads
- 3 x DMPad 12″ Cymbals
- 1 x ProRack complete with mounting hardware
- 1 x DM6 Kit cable snake
- 1 x Drum key
- 2 x Drumsticks
- 1 x Assembly instructions/quick start guide