What are the best low volume drum heads? A good set of low volume drum heads can reduce your drum kit volume by up to 80%. Here’s our top recommendations with our reasons why we like them.
Remo Silentstroke Low Volume Drum Heads
Remo Silentstroke drum heads are always a good option. They have been around long enough to garner a good reputation, and Remo is a quality brand. They are a simple design with a simple goal – to reduce the volume of your drums as much as possible while retaining a good feel during play.
They are made from a single ply mesh and they are going to provide some of the most extreme amounts of volume reduction. They don’t have any extra bells and whistles in their design like some other low volume heads do. They don’t really have much of a tone since they are so quiet. Silentstroke heads rely more on the resonant heads on the bottom of your drums to create tone, if any at all.
These heads can also be a good option for drummers converting acoustic to electronic drums. Their no-frills design helps them work well with most types of aftermarket electronic drum sensors.
Silenstroke heads also come in a wide range of size options, unlike some other low volume drum heads. If you have a kit that has some non-standard drum sizes, there is more likely of a chance that you’ll be able to find a Silentstroke head to fit.
Evans dB One Low Volume Drum Heads
Evans is becoming well known for their low volume drumming options with both cymbals and drum heads. Their dB One drum heads are designed to reduce volume by up to 80% while also retaining a little bit of attack and tone in their sound profile.
These drum heads are made from a single ply mesh. They also have a patch in the center of the head along with a ring of foam underneath the head. The patch helps to add a little bit of attack to the sound as well as a little bit of resonance. The foam ring helps to dampen any strong resonance to keep the heads more on the quiet side. It’s a good combination of features and the design works well to bring in a little bit of tone without being overpowering.
Drummers who like to use low volume drum heads for live situations tend to gravitate towards heads like these. They are quiet, but still have enough tone to work for performances, especially the tom and kick drum heads.
These heads come in a fairly wide range of sizes, so if the Rock Pack doesn’t fit your drums you can mix and match head sizes to get what you need.
These are a little more on the expensive end of the low volume drum head spectrum, but they are well worth the price. They also are available in bundles with Evans dB One low volume cymbals.
RTOM LV Low Volume Drum Heads
If you need to lower the volume of your drum kit, but you’re not exactly looking for the most extreme volume reduction, the RTOM LV drum heads are well worth a look. RTOM designs these heads to be quiet but not silent.
RTOM makes these drum heads with a heavier single ply mesh. They add a decently sized patch to the center of the head to help add some attack and resonance to their sound. They are little bit louder than the Silentstroke and dB One heads due to their design, and it’s intentional. These heads have a little bit more resonance than those other two options, and it’s especially noticeable in the toms.
These heads are great for drummers who think that heads like the Silentstrokes are little too quiet. They play as well as any other mesh head I’ve tried, and the patch helps to give them a little bit more tone and attack, which I like.
These are a good option for practicing, giving lessons or even for low volume performances. They aren’t very expensive either and a pack that contains 10, 12, 14, 16 and 22 inch heads costs about a hundred bucks. RTOM does sell individual heads as well, but they’re not as easy to find as the packs are. The range of size options are also more narrow than the Remo and Evans options. I’ve only seen these available in the packs with the standard rock drum sizes.
Why Use Low Volume Drum Heads?
Drummers turn to low volume drum heads when they find that their traditional drum heads and cymbals are just too loud for their playing situation. There is no volume knob on acoustic drums, so you end up having to use different equipment to reduce volume.
Low volume drum heads are great for a few reasons.
First, they can work well for drummers who practice at home and who don’t want to bother their family or housemates with so much noise. This can include everybody from kids who are starting out and practicing at home all the way to more experienced drummers.
Second, they can work well for drummers who give lessons and want to be able to talk over the drums while showing students how to play. Using low volume drum heads don’t negatively affect technique so that’s why they can be useful for learning and teaching.
Third, they can work for certain low volume live playing situations. If you’re finding that traditional drum heads are just too loud for the performances you do, low volume drum heads could be worth a look.