5 Best Drum Triggers for Any Kind of Setup [11 Models Tested]
Posted in Gear | Last Updated on October 2, 2019
The friend of every modern drummer—the drum trigger. It adds dimension to your drum set by converting your acoustic instrument to a new and improved electronic-sound-giving set. Triggers are those tiny products that are very hassle-free when it comes to their usage.
Drum triggers are equipment that is attached to a part of your drum.
They work by gathering signals from the heads of your drum set when stuck upon, and sending this data with all its intensity to a module or a drum pad with a wired connection. You can then amp up the whole set up to hear the quality sound. The benefit of having these with you is that it they can cost-effectively enhance your music.
Although these drum triggers function the same way, different companies provide additions and features to their products that significantly increase the performance of it.
With compatibility factors and the discussion of whether to get the single or dual trigger, you may get overwhelmed with the number of things you have to look into before purchasing one for yourself.
In this article, let’s look at the reviews of the 5 best drum triggers with their pros and cons.
ddrum Acoustic Pro 5-Piece Drum Trigger Kit
ddrum is a Swedish company that is based out of America and started in the 1980s. They are manufacturers of acoustic drum kits, electronic drums, and electronic triggers.
Add that electronic zing to your drum set with the ddrum Acoustic Drum Trigger Kit. This is quite a reliable kit, and I would suggest you purchase it if you are looking to triggering your entire kit at one go instead of investing only one at a time.
- The pack includes triggers that have a good tracking ability to pick up on sounds.
- The triggers fit almost all types of molded hoops.
- It does not need adhesive.
- Comes in a pack of 5 which includes one trigger for the bass, one for the snare, and three for the tom-toms which can help you convert your entire kit into a triggered drum set.
- Provided with XLR outputs that provide a secure connection.
- Durable build.
What’s not good:
- Not reliable enough in a concert setting as some triggers are reported to not work correctly at times.
- There is no protection for your drum shells.
Yamaha DT-50S Dual-Zone Acoustic Snare or Tom Trigger
Yamaha is a pretty old and famous company that started in 1887. They produce a wide array of musical instruments, audio production tools, and drum kits, and accessories.
The Yamaha DT-50S Metal Body, Dual-Zone Acoustic Snare/Tom Trigger provides accurate triggering and is practically adaptable with all modules. I think that this option is good when you compare it to the rest of the products on this list as it maintains the original sound and resonance of your drum. They may be on the pricey side, but when you take into consideration, all the benefits it comes with it is worth the buy.
- Includes dual-zone trigger capability that can recognize the sound coming from the head and rim separately.
- It is also accurate and reliable in picking up these sounds and doesn’t record unnecessary signals in the surrounding drums.
- Robust body made of metal with a chrome finish that promises a long-lasting product that holds onto the drum rim tightly and looks professional at the same time.
- Although sturdy, this attachment doesn’t damage your drum.
- Easy to use and quick to clip on and remove from the drum.
- Perfect for recording in studios or when performing live as this trigger is highly reliable.
What’s not good:
- It is on the pricey side.
- The clip and screw mechanism on the trigger isn’t very stable at times.
Pintech External Trigger
Pintech Percussion company based in the USA. They make electronic percussion kits and accessories and have come to sell some pretty good products for drummers.
The Pintech Eternal Trigger is another product in this list that comes in a pack of 5, making it a one-time investment for your entire kit. The ease of use and its versatility of where you can place these triggers are the main reason why I would go for this.
- Works with a variety of drum setups and can be attached with mesh heads or acoustic drum heads.
- Versatile as it can be set up on the inside of the drum or the outside.
- Good pick up of signals and provides high sensitivity and response.
- The unique mounting system which they call the "Kwik Klip" mounting system ensures that the audio jack remains in the spot where it was attached.
- It also can be placed on any rod without any glue medium.
- Easy to set up and remove.
- Highly resistant to wear and tear and is, therefore, able to protect the electronics inside the trigger.
What's not good:
- Unlike other drum triggers, you must place it closer to the spot when you consistently hit the drum to pick up signals correctly.
- Must spend quite a bit of time tweaking the sensitivity settings to avoid capturing false triggers.
Aquarian Kickzone Bass Drum Trigger
Aquarian Drumheads U.S.A. which was owned by Roy Burns, a world-famous big band drummer, teacher, and clinician, was founded in 1980. They make innovative products that merge drumming and technology.
The Aquarian Kickzone Bass Drum Trigger is a pocket-friendly option that comes with a simple design. It is the best kick drum trigger even though it has minor issues with the quality of the fixture. I will probably buy it if I'm using it to trigger my drums when recording in the studio.
- Easy to use and gives a good response.
- Adhesive backing helps you securely mount your trigger.
- The trigger comes with a bracket that secures the placement of the cable that you connect to the trigger.
- The connection for the cable is pretty tight.
- Suitable for the studio and live gigs as well.
- Comes with an adhesive backing that is strong and makes the trigger stay in place.
What's not good:
- The adhesive on the side of the bracket for your cable is not very strong and needs a little extra push to be set in place.
- Cable length isn't very long.
Roland Drum Set Clamp (RT-30K)
The year 1972 was the start for Roland Corporation. A Japanese manufacturer of electronic instruments, equipment, and software.
If you have the budget to splurge, you can get the Roland Drum Set Clamp (RT-30K). You can very well do that as it is an effective product and does what it advertises.
- This trigger can be used to play electronic sources from an acoustic bass drum.
- Highly sensitive with a perfect triggering response.
- Mounting the trigger is simple and easy to do with the self-guiding sensor. This will help you avoid false triggering.
- The body is well-made with ABS and reinforced with fiberglass making it able to withstand any damage from the mallet.
- It comes along with a connection cable.
- Compatible with many modules.
What’s not good:
- Again another product that falls into the big-budget category
What to look out for when purchasing one of your own
Different factors will make your purchase a good one. Firstly, ensure that your drum triggers are suitable for the module that you have. Many companies provide triggers that can be used with a variety of drum modules. But better to check this off your list, than to buy one, and realize it doesn’t work with the module that you own.
The next thing to look out for is the versatility of the trigger. Do you want one that can fit onto any drum, or do you want a set of multiple pieces for each drum?
Another aspect you must consider is if your trigger can pick up single or dual signals. Let’s say you have a snare for which you want to set up your trigger. You may want to pick up sounds that are coming from the head or the drum as well as the rim. In this case, you will want a dual single trigger. Otherwise, the single signal trigger is your option.
Lastly, look out for the style of the trigger. If you buy ones that have an adhesive backing, there may be issues in regards to how good it sticks to your drum. And while adhesive can be rubbed off quickly, the other option of mounting your trigger on the kit can damage the rim over time. However, they usually include protective casings that cover all the essential parts of the trigger so that it can remain safe and snug on the inside.