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How Do I Choose the Best USB Drums?

Because of the increased speed available from USB 3.0, it is preferred over previous generations in most audio applications.
USB cables are used to connect devices -- such as electronic drums or other instruments -- to computers.
Digital percussion sounds are either recorded audio samples or were developed with the use of a synthesizer.
A USB cable connects USB drums to a computer.
Article Details
  • Written By: A. Leverkuhn
  • Edited By: Andrew Jones
  • Last Modified Date: 19 August 2014
  • Copyright Protected:
    2003-2014
    Conjecture Corporation
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In order to choose the best USB drums for a band, studio, or other percussion project, musicians or project managers should understand how various models provide digital interactivity and easy computer hookups for percussion. USB drums are some of the most cutting-edge designs on the percussion market, mainly useful for connecting live play to a digital studio environment. Some basic research into these modern drum kits will show shoppers how to get the best USB drums for a specific musical need.

One of the main considerations for USB drums is related to specific connectivity. Most USB drum kits are so-called because musicians can easily plug them into USB ports in a desktop or laptop computer. This process may be easier with some drum models than others. Look for plug-and-play operation for the easiest USB connectivity. It’s also helpful to look for alternative forms of connectivity like MIDI, which are also offered with many USB drum models.

The best USB drum kits combine digital interactivity with a realistic playing environment. The quality of drum heads in a kit is one of the best indicators of overall quality. Choosing kits with tunable drum heads and realistic drum head designs will give the drummer more of a real experience in practice or studio recording. The same is true for cymbals. The best USB drum kits have quality metal cymbals that will provide crisp, clear sounds for input.

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Some types of USB kits also profit from extra features related to play modality. This includes special rim click features for getting unique sounds by hitting the edges of the drum, as well as other features like additional percussion sounds including chimes and cowbells. The synthetic bass drum is also a consideration for one of these drum kits or sets. The bass pedal or kick pedal and bass drum surface should be fully functional and easy to operate.

Overall, shoppers can look for the USB drum kit designs that offer the most value for cost. Warranties or guarantees of quality are useful for these types of purchases. Good customer support is also essential. Because interactivity for a digital studio can be a complex thing, it’s important to have the right resources; this includes manuals, tech support, and email or chat support when it’s time to connect a USB set to a digital studio setup.

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