Since the dawn of time millions of years ago, there have been inventions and discoveries that have changed the course of history. Fire, the Wheel, Electricity, The Fender Precision Bass, and the Marshall 100 watt stack, to name a few. It’s not often you get to shake the hand of the man or woman who created one of those.
But if ever we get to meet the designer and inventor of the drum pad, we will buy him a beer. It has become an essential tool for a drummer and can be used in a variety of ways. For some, the best drum practice pads are great for practicing at home for others; they are a way of warming up before a big concert.
So, let’s take a look at some of the Best Drum Practice Pads currently available and find the perfect one for you…
Top 10 Best Drum Practice Pads In 2021 Reviews
1 The 12-inch Double Sided Practice Pad
This practice pad from the Movement Drum company has gone out of its way to create the feel of a real snare drum. It has also included some playing options, which are a nice idea, and it has three different playing surfaces over its two sides. It also includes a full rim made of plastic.
This allows you to be able to create a rim shot effect. It is designed for the snare drum and is 12 inches across and comes with two inserts to create different sounds and textures.
It is made of tough silicone rubber. The rubber has two surfaces depending upon which way up you use it. The top is hard and with plenty of the feeling of attack with a powerful rebound. It readily simulates the feel of a snare drum. The bottom is made from a much softer rubber material. It has less attack and is much quieter to use. It is a comfortable surface to work with much less rebound.
The Movement Drum Company recognizes that drummers use their snares in a variety of ways. For this reason, they have included two inserts that create two different effects.
The Conditioning surface is an insert that gives you a covering that promotes technical skills. It has a lower rebound trajectory, which is basically a shock absorber that takes the sting out of the impact of the drum head. It doesn’t cancel all rebound, just enough to give you the chance to work on your technique.
The other insert is a Laminated insert that creates a much more intricate feel. It also has that snap of a real snare drum but at a much lower volume. This insert is ideal for brighter, tighter sound and playing style.
This two-sided pad with its inserts makes a great practice tool, covering as it does, a range of playing styles. It is easy to carry around with you at only four pounds in weight. However, it is a little more expensive than some of the others. But it is a robust hard-wearing pad that gives you options. It could actually be the best drum practice pad because of its variety of uses.
- Tough hard-wearing design.
- Includes three different playing options.
- A little more expensive than some.
2 Tosnail 12-inch Silent Drum Practice Pad
That’s what we like to hear. A silent drum pad. Of course, it only is really silent when they’ve stopped practicing, but this comes close. This is not really a practice pad as we understand them to be; in fact, it sits on top of the snare it replaces.
It is made from maple and is 13-¾ inches by 2-½ inches. And is adjustable, and parts can be replaced if necessary. It can be used in a variety of ways, and you can just clip it o your snare stand or even just use it on a table.
It is quiet, we agree, but it does make more noise than a rubber pad might do. If you hit it hard enough, it is almost as loud as a snare drum. It is well-made and is quite hard-wearing. It is not two-sided, though, so you will only use one side. After a period of time, it will wear, depending on the amount and type of usage.
It is probably best used as a warm-up snare, more than a practice at home in the quiet pad. It is, though, a very affordable practice tool and will save you the problems of getting drums and stands out if you want a bit of quick practice.
- Easy to use and setup.
- It isn’t as quiet as a rubber pad.
3 Evans Realfeel 2-Sided Practice Pad, 12 Inch
The Evans Realfeet is recognized as one of the leading drum pads. Evans has been in the drumhead manufacturing business for over 40 years. They know a thing or two about producing efficient practice pads.
This practice pad is a two-sided design and features a hard rubber on one side. This is a recycle material that is tougher and more durable and gives less rebound on impact. Ideal for a drummer who needs to practice for loud volume playing. The other side is a dark grey color and is a softer rubber with a textured finish. It is a little more lightweight but still is durable and not prone to wear and tear.
It is lightweight at three and a half pounds and will fit into any snare drum stand. For pre-gig practice, it is shaped conveniently to just sit on top of your snare drum. It has a reasonable size playing surface, so it is easy and comfortable to use.
It is a well-designed and manufactured practice pad, and the variety of having two playing surfaces makes it ideal. Also, it is a comfortable size to carry around, and the price point is set at an affordable level. It is convenient and will work on a tabletop or even on your lap while you are seated. If you prefer, you can use the snare stand, as we have already mentioned.
If there is one issue we have with this practice pad, it is that it has a smell of chemicals about it. Probably something to do with the glue that is used. It is not the most pleasant of smells. But, that said, it probably won’t last long, so it will only be a problem until the smell has gone. And you could always practice outside in preparation for those festival gigs if you need to!
This is one of the best rubber practice pads for drums, and at the price is good value. It would be perfect if it didn’t have that chemical-like smell.
- Well-made with two surfaces.
- Affordable cost and a variety of options for use.
- The smell of glue is not so good.
4 Offworld Percussion Invader V3 Practice Pad
This practice pad by Offworld is where practice goes from a bit of fun to let’s get serious. This pad is quite a bit bigger than what you will usually find at 13.75 inches across. A bit heavier as well at five pounds.
Offworld has gone out of its way to produce a practice pad that will replicate the feeling of a real snare drum. It has a polymer rubber-based surface and, at the bottom, a non-slip material of similar material. In fact, you can reverse this pad and turn it upside down and use it. The rim is toughened and allows you to play rim shots without damaging your sticks.
It will fit inside a 14-inch snare drum comfortably or will allow you to use it on other surfaces. Either on a table or on your lap, it still works fine. It is not as silent as a pure rubber pad might be, but it is not loud either. Similar to if you were playing on a wooden table.
It is more expensive than some other pads, but there is a reason for this. It is made to be tough and rugged and last a very long time. More than that, though, the sound and you feel you get is similar to a real snare drum. The rebound especially is excellent, and with the other surface, you get a choice.
It is a quality practice pad and is easily considered as one of the best rubber practice pads for drums.
- Tough and hard-wearing design that fits inside the snare drum.
- Replicates the feel and the sound of a real snare.
- A bit more expensive than most.
5 Drum Workshop Go Anywhere Add Accessory Pack
What we have looked at so far are practice pads that fit on top of your snare drum. A good deal of playing the drums is around the snare, of course. But getting good technique will assist in all parts of the kit. But maybe you have just once wished that you had a full practice kit and not just one drum. Well, wish no more. Here it is. The closest you will ever come to a full-size kit that isn’t.
Included here are two ten-inch pads. These are positioned to simulate the floor tom and the snare drum. There is a bass drum pad that allows you to include kick drum patterns. But, you will have to use your own pedal or even try one of the best double bass pedals on the market.
There are a further two pads of eight inches in diameter that give you a mounted tom and a cymbal. There is no inclusion for a hi-hat, but you can reposition another pad if the work involves hi-hat.
The pads are adjustable and can be moved to a position to suit and can even be replaced if necessary. Extra pads can be fitted if you wish. The stand is all-metal construction in aluminum and is stable and well-built. The tripod stand is also strong and is built along similar lines to a drum stool.
If you want to practice at home but cannot use a full kit, then this is an excellent answer to the problem. The pads do rebound quite well, but it is virtually noiseless and doesn’t actually take up that much space.
A good design and well made with the feel similar to a real kit. It is a clever, innovative idea. It isn’t cheap, of course, and costs as much as a cheap drum set. But if you need to practice, then it is a better option than a single pad. It’s also good practice for a starter to be able to practice without the need for a full kit set up. All this makes it a great drum practice pad set and is highly recommended if you need a complete kit practice set up.
- Well made with a variety of playing options.
- Near silent practice on a four drum kit.
- More expensive than a drum pad.
6 Vic Firth 12″ Double-sided Practice Pad
The Vic Firth company was founded by the aforementioned drummer in Massachusetts in the US. It became widely recognized as the manufacturer of quality drum sticks. While he was still employed as timpanist with the Boston Philharmonic Orchestra. In 2010 the company merged with Avedis Zildjian. The manufacture of drum pads became a natural extension to a company run by a man who really knew drums.
These are made with a thin layer of rubber on a wooden base. It is an effort to simulate the feel of the snare used by marching bands, The rubber, and wood creating the feeling of Kevlar often used in marching band snare drums. It is double-sided and is lightweight and easy to carry around.
It will fit on a snare stand, but it can be placed on a table or even on the floor. It has to be said, though, that this doesn’t sound like a snare drum. The idea with this pad is not to recreate the sound but the feel of the drum. That is what you will need for practice.
One side of the pad is louder than the other and has a slightly different feel to it. The rubber is a little harder and makes a bigger sound on impact. The quieter side is hardly noticeable and suitable for practicing at home.
Rather an expensive pad even though it is well made.
- Double-sided with one very quiet side.
- Lightweight but durable construction.
- Quite expensive.
7 Remo RT-0008-00 8″ Gray Tunable Practice Pad
This practice pad from Remo is a small 8-inch pad, although, with the outer plastic rim, it measures 9.5 inches. It is designed to be used just about anywhere. It will fit on a snare stand or on top of the snare drum, though it might move around a bit. Underneath it has a rubber protector that allows it to be used on tables. The head is replaceable if need be.
It is suitable for the experienced drummer to be able to practice or warm-up but is also good for the student to use at home. And has a good bounce and rebound and has the feel of striking a real drum head. It is quite loud in contact, so you will have to be careful about home practice. There are some people who use it as part of their on-stage kit.
If you are looking for a pad for practice or warm-up, then it might suffice. It has a decent feel to the way it plays. But if you are looking for a quiet pad for late-night practice at home, this might not be the one. This will depend on where you live, of course, but if you have close neighbors, then this will probably not be suitable.
It is set at a very cost-effective price point, which makes it an attractive option if the circumstances are right and is well made and quite durable.
- It can be used in a variety of places.
- Affordable price.
- Not particularly quiet.
8 Ammoon 10 Inch Drum Practice Pad
This practice pad from Ammoon is a plastic surface construction. It has a 10-inch width and can be tuned to slightly higher or lower pitches and tensions. Also, it features a plastic rim and has a non-slip design to allow for using a table.
It is a package that also includes a carrying bag and a pair of drumsticks. The sticks aren’t the highest quality but ok as a backup. On the base is a screw fitting so that it may be fitted to a stand.
This pad certainly makes no claims about being silent. Being plastic, it is actually quite loud if struck firmly. Therefore if you are looking for a pad for a bit of late-night practice, this probably won’t do. Likewise, if you are expecting a snare drum sound, you will be disappointed, it isn’t made for its sound and is made of plastic.
It is not the best-made pad you will come across but may be suitable for a young drummer starting out. However, it is set at a reasonable price point, so for some, it will be an attractive option. The fact that it has a carry bag is also positive, as many others don’t.
- Very affordable.
- It comes with some sticks and a carry bag.
- Rather cheap, cost-effective option.
9 Ultra-Portable Practice Pad – 6” Drum Pad
Another practice pad from the Movement Drum company, this pad a smaller 6 inch. It is designed to be able to be carried around easily and weighs just half a pound. The idea is that drummers can store this comfortably with them so they may practice basic stick control whenever the opportunity arises. In that respect, it works quite well if the size is rather limiting.
It is made from a rubber-based material called Neoprene. This lightweight material is easily kept clean with a damp cloth and is quite durable. It actually sticks to the surface you place it on but doesn’t leave a mark. Its stickiness is restored by once again using a damp cloth.
Being a rubber-based product, this pad is quite quiet for practice.
It is set at a very affordable price and has some good features. The idea of sticking it to a surface is a new one on us and a novel idea. Depending on what surface you actually lace it on, it will alter the sound that it produces.
Obviously, at just 6 inches wide, it is not going to fit on a stand. The width, of course, is also rather limiting. You will need to be accurate with your stick control to avoid making contact with the surface you place it on.
- Very cost-effective price.
- Quite well-made and does give playing options.
- Rather small.
10 Sabian 10″ Quiet Tone Mesh Practice Pad
This 10-inch practice pad from Sabian is designed to be flexible, and It is also a little different. More on this later.
The flexibility is in the way it can be used. It will fit on to the top of a snare drum on its stand. You can, therefore, practice quietly on your kit. It has rubber feet so it can be placed on a table or any flat surface, allowing you to practice anywhere.
The non-slip rubber feet ensure the pad will not move around as you play. You can even play it with it resting on your lap. Or finally, take your snare drum off its stand and clip the pad in.
It is a very quiet pad, but maybe you can’t call it a pad. The term indicates a firm surface, possibly rubber or some like material.
This has a mesh surface with a metal surrounding rim. The rim is raised slightly as it is on a real snare drum. Therefore rim shots and cross sticking become realistic. The tension is adjustable as on a real snare with lugs, so there is a style of playing options available. All so very positive so far, and at a very affordable price point, this looks an attractive practice pad.
As we see it, there is a potential problem, and perhaps we are being a bit unfair. But being a mesh covering you are striking, is it vulnerable? It is mesh, and so could tear reasonably easily.
You certainly couldn’t use wire brushes as they would snag and tear the surface. It seems like a great idea, and the sound is almost completely silenced as you are not striking a hard surface, which has to be positive. But the feeling is not like the skin of a drum as drum skins are a hard surface.
We can see some real positives in this practice pad, but we can also see some potential problems.
- Clever idea with a good solid rim.
- An affordable price and plenty of playing options.
- The mesh might be vulnerable to damage.
Best Drum Practice Pads Buyer’s Guide
Getting The Right Practice Pad
Getting drummers to play and practice quietly has long been a problem. Ever since most of them saw Keith Moon and his ‘demolition’ style of playing, it has become an even bigger problem.
So How Do You Get Them To Be Just a Bit Quiet?
Well, there are three options. Take the kit away, which isn’t an answer as they do actually need to practice. Make sure they are taking their medication, as most of them in our experience need to, or get them a nice quiet practice pad.
However, there are many different kinds designed for a range of uses and standards. It is this point you need to address first.
Is It For Home Practice?
If so, then there is a noise factor involved. It is going to have to be quiet. Some of the practice pads are how you might describe as ‘quieter’ but not quiet. There is a difference. If it is for the home, then you are probably better off going for a rubber-based material. Plastic and anything that isn’t going to absorb the sound is not going to work.
What Kind Of Practice?
By this, we mean technical or just starter type time-keeping. If it is for technical work, a double-sided pad is probably best. You will get a variety of surfaces, which is important. If it is for beginner work, then you will need a reasonable size pad. A small one is going to be difficult. You may find yourself concentrating on actually hitting the pad rather than on your technique.
And how many pads do you need? Can you get away with one pad, or will you need more? There is even a practice set up that caters for a full-kit if that is needed.
Does It Need To Be Portable?
Do you need to carry it around? If so, then it needs to be lightweight and preferably has something to carry it in, though this isn’t really essential.
Quite a few decisions but, no worries, there are plenty of excellent options available.
So, What Are The Best Drum Practice Pads?
It is very tempting when choosing the best practice pad to go the full four drum setup. It is an excellent build with all you need, but possibly for a bit of brief practice, it a bit too much. There are some good options with some interesting ideas for keeping these drummers quiet. But we have decided that the one we would choose is the…
Made by a company set up by a drummer of some repute. They know what is required and have made a product that has a quality build. Being double-sided, it has some playing and sound options as well. In our opinion, the very best of all the best drum practice pads we’ve reviewed.