There are quiet a few low volume drum heads on the market, but the single-ply mesh drum heads with no other bells and whistles are the heads that will provide the most silent drumming experience.
Recommended Singly-Ply Mesh Drum Heads
I’ve been trying out lots of different low volume drum heads and other gear to lower drum volume, and I’m finding that the Remo Silentstroke and the Evans dB Zero mesh drum heads have the best ability to get as silent as possible. There are some other good options for low volume drumming such as the Evans dB One and the RTOM LV heads, but they focus on adding a little bit more tone and attack to the sound so they aren’t going to quite get to the silent levels that a plain single-ply mesh head will.
Evans dB Zero Mesh Drum Heads
The Evans dB Zero drum heads, formerly known as Soundoff, are Evans version of a single-ply mesh head. They reduce volume dramatically.
These heads come in many different sizes and they have enough options that you should be able to find a combination of sizes that fit your drum kit. They are made from Evans Shockweave mesh, which is their proprietary approach to mesh. While they are only single ply they can still feel incredibly close to a mylar drum head in terms of response when you take the time to dial in the tension.
Remo Silenstroke Mesh Drum Heads
Remo Silenstroke heads are Remo’s take on single-ply mesh drum heads. They feel almost exactly the same as Evans dB Zero drum heads.
These heads are also available in a wide variety of sizes, so it should be possible to find a combination that will fit your drum kit. Remo’s Silentstroke mesh is durable and has a really nice feel when you take the time to dial in the tension to your preferences. They are also available in both white and black color options.
How To Use These Drum Heads To Make Your Kit As Silent As Possible
Ok, so now you’ve got some mesh drum heads. How do you use them to make your drum kit as silent as possible? One option is to install them and leave the resonant heads on all your drums. This will significantly lower the volume of your drum kit while also still maintaining just a little bit of resonance and tone.
If that is still too loud though, depending on your playing situation, you can further remove the resonant heads from your toms and kick drum, and they will be almost completely devoid of any resonance and overtones. So that would be a good way to go if you’re trying to make your drum kit as silent as possible.
The snare will still be a bit of a challenge, since you’ll find that you need to be able to keep the snare wires active to get a snappy snare sound. In order to do that, you need to leave the resonant bottom head on your snare drum. But you can use tape or cloth to try to dampen that part a little bit further if needed.
Now that you’ve silenced your drums, it’s time to move onto the cymbals. They will be a bit more of a challenge to silence, but some low volume cymbals could get you going in the right direction.