The 9 Best Drum Machines of 2018

Please share my content!

The Best Drum Machines Reviews

For music lovers who like to throw jamming parties every now and then or even for people who would like to simply produce some beautiful sounding percussive noises, a drum machine is a great thing to have around. You might also be interested in our articles about the best electirc guitar and the best digital pianos.

What are drum machines? Drum machines are musical box-shaped devices equipped with a bunch of buttons similar to a keyboard that is designed to produce ear-appealing percussive music that is both artistic and entertaining. They produce and mix drum sounds producing music that sounds professional, it’s like having a professional drummer in a small box, how awesome is that?

The sound that is produced lie on the more electronic end of music. They can also be used to produce any kind of demo without having to carry around a full drum gear with you.

Having a drum machine makes it easier to play and record music. If you’re a person who enjoys creating music as well as you enjoy listening to it, you can go crazy with this thing.

Whether you’re looking to throw a one-person jamming session in your bedroom, want to show off in front of your friends or even if you are a professional music player, having a drum machine is definitely a great investment.

Not all drum machine are similar though. Some are huge while others are very small, some are analog while others are digital leading to different sounds, just to mention a few differences. Looking for the perfect drum machine can be confusing. To finding the right drum machine easier for you, we have summarized the most important factors that you should consider when getting a drum machine.

1. Size

Drum machines aren’t created equal and when it comes to size, this statement couldn’t be more true. Of course, drum machines aren’t as huge as they used to be back in the day. However, they do still come in very large sizes, while others come in very small sizes.

Each size has it’s own pros and cons. Getting a smaller drum machine is a good call if you are tight on space and you just want something to jam with every now and then. However, smaller ones can be frustrating to play with especially while performing and might leave you feeling annoyed.

Bigger drum machines are easier to perform with and give you a lot of space to play with, however, if you have small space available, this might not be the best solution. Before you choose the size of your drum machine, make sure that it’ll work best for you.

2. Memory

The memory of a drum machine means how much patterns it can store. Before you go ahead and spend your hard earned cash on a drum machine, you should know whether or not this drum machine has enough memory to save the number of patterns that you typically need.

If you like performing in front of your friends or you perform on a stage you will definitely need a drum machine with a big memory. Also having big memory will give you more freedom because it will make the drum machine almost act independently so not much work will be needed from your side once the pattern is put into order.

3. Changing sounds

Not all drum machines give you the ability to upload your own sounds into them. Most of those devices come with a specific set and that’s that.

However, with a drum machine that allows sampling you can change and alter the drum machine in any way you want, the applications with this ability are virtually limitless. You can download sounds from the internet, use that you hear, anything that you want. You can completely go nuts with this feature.

Not all people would find this feature useful though. Some would be very happy with just the built-in sounds of a normal drum machine, so you should consider what works best for you.

Now that you are familiar with what to consider and how to pick the best drum machine, we have carefully gathered this list of 9 best drumming machines in the market so you can choose the one that works best for you.

1. Pyle Electronic Drum Set Pad With Drum Sticks Kit

This is a drum machine that’s built to replicate the design of a real drum kit, making it easier to play with than a regular drum machine. If you’re looking for the perfect way to practice your drumming skills wherever you go, this is definitely it.

To make the experience of using this drum machine even closer to a real drum kit, it comes with pedals and drumsticks. This gives you a real sensation of a true rock star when using the machine.

In addition to that, the intelligently distributed pads make the drums easy to play with despite the overall small size of the drum machine. If you’re looking for a drum machine that combines portability with an authentic drum kit feel, this is an excellent model that you should definitely consider.

With hundreds of built-in sounds and songs, you can go completely crazy with this drum machine and there are absolutely no limits to what you can do with it. To make using this drum machine even more awesome, you can easily connect it to your PC or laptop. With that, you can start mixing, editing and getting creative with your tunes.

Being battery powered with decent speakers means that you can take this drum kit with you anywhere you go. With the portability that this model offers, throwing your own party is really easy. Just plug in the headphones in the headphones jack, and you’re officially isolated in your own music festival.

Product Highlights:

  • Realistic pedals and drumsticks
  • High-quality speakers
  • Ability to plug in headphones

2. Teenage Engineering Drum Machine, Sequencer and Synthesizer

Designed to be the smallest on our list and virtually the smallest in the market, this drum machine is roughly the same size as a calculator or a mobile phone and it is by far the least expensive on the list as well. If you’re looking for a drum machine that gives you a great bang for the buck, this is definitely a model that’s worth considering.

It is equipped with as much as 16 sampled drum sounds. It includes a variety of different sounds that were designed by the best drums, such as high hats, closed and open, bass, snare and many other sounds. While it is small in size, it definitely isn’t small when it comes to features and capabilities.

If you don’t like the sounds or the music produced, you can use real-life sounds and effects that best suit your needs and get extra creative with it. In addition to that, this model has a sequencer and synthesizer this device has virtually everything that you could want from a drum machine in a compact and portable manner.

With its battery and headphone jack, this device is a perfect companion if you want to start mixing songs and effects everywhere you go. If you want to mix sounds on the go, this is a feature that you’ll definitely like.

It’s worth mentioning that this drum machine isn’t a professional model. If you’re a professional musician, there are other models out there that could serve you better. This model is designed for amateurs who want a drum machine without having to pay a small fortune for a professional-grade model.

Product Highlights:

  • Smallest on the list
  • Great for learners
  • Portable thanks to its battery

3. Korg Volca Beats Analog Rhythm Machine

Elegantly designed device with sounds that are beautiful and memorable. Despite the fact that the size of this drum machine is not small, it’s equipped with a removable battery so you can take it anywhere and perform wherever you want to.

The six analogs of this machine are designed to provide you with easy editing and adjusting. Each knob is specifically built to perform one function, and one function only, which gives more control while working with this drum machine and makes it much easier to work with.

To make using the step sequencer even more convenient, it’s designed that makes adding or removing parts much easier, which results in an excellent sound quality.

By using the 16 step keys, you can add the sounds and notes that you want at whatever time you wish, making editing easier by a great amount.

The built-in speakers are designed to enable you to perform anywhere. Combined with its battery and portable nature, this will be your new companion if you are into playing on-the-go. However, if you want to have more privacy when playing, you can very easily just plug in your headphones and just like that, you are isolated.

With 8 memory patterns, memory isn’t something that you should worry about when using this drum machine.

Product Highlights:

  • Built-in speakers
  • Easy edit and adjusting
  • 8 memory patterns

4. Novation Circuit Groove Box Sample

This model is on the bigger and more professional end of drum machines. When it comes to sounds, you can either program them or by capturing any sound real-time, giving you a lot of creativity and freedom to play around with. If you’re looking for a capable drum machine and willing to shell out some extra bucks for it, this is a model that you’ll definitely like.

With as much as 128 steps of drums and other sounds, you can create tunes with a variety of different sounds and effects. Once you’re happy with the quality of the tune that you have, you can easily save it on one of the 32 slots that you have available.

To make the sound quality even better, you can combine as much as 8 different patterns per track. Overall, the sound quality that this drum machine creates is among the best that you can right now.

The small and compact design of this model allows you to take it with you wherever you go. Throw the battery in with that mix and you have yourself a drum machine that you can use while you are relaxing on the couch, on the train, while you’re recording in the studio or simply wherever.

It has no limitations and can be taken with you anywhere you please, the fun never stops with this one. If you’re looking for a high-quality portable drum machine, you don’t need to look any further.

Product Highlights:

  • 32 slots to store tunes
  • Portable and compact
  • Includes 128 steps

5. Alesis SR16 Classic 24-bit stereo Electronic Drum Machine

One of the most popular drum machines out there that can be used by virtually anyone who is into drum machines. This model is perfect if you’re a newbie or even if you are a pro.

With a great amount of built-in rhythmic variation, this drum machine can start a party the second it gets out of the box. It is also incredibly easy to use and takes little to no effort to set up, which is definitely an added bonus.

Equipped with an army of 233 sounds that are both professional and artistic, this drum machine can handle anything. The natural and beautiful drum sounds of this machine have been carefully sampled to deliver an excellent sound quality.

Producing nice and mesmerizing drum sounds that make you feel like you are next to a drum kit, and with the programming and editing features that are included, you can take your creativity to the next level and completely go crazy with it.

With as much as 50 different patterns that are initially installed into this drum machine, just by getting it out of the box you have a lot of different pre-installed patterns to play with and to get you going.

It’s also worth mentioning that this machine is completely compatible with MIDI support, so you can comfortably connect it to your computer, drum kit or whatever.

Product Highlights:

  • 233 mesmerizing sounds
  • 50 professionally designed patterns
  • Accepts MIDI support

6. Roland SPD-SX Sampling Percussion Pad

This is hands down one of the most high-end drum machines that are currently available on the market. Made with professionals in mind, this is the only sampling pad in the market, making it the pioneer in this new technology that was introduced by Roland.

With 2gb of internal memory, you can store as much as 360 minutes of sampling right onto this device without requiring any external memory or devices. You just sample and it’ll be safely stored on this device.

One of the best features of this pad is the ability to sample it from your own phone in real time. In addition to that, this model also gives you the ability to split a song so you can choose the particular part that you want and save it for later use.

While this pad is mainly designed for sampling it also includes a lot of awesome preset sounds that give you a lot of space to play with them, making this a great all-around musical device.

The two knobs are designed to add more control and convenience, along with four effect buttons and a lot more. You’ll be able to manipulate this pad in whatever way you please in an easy and effortless manner

Product Highlights:

  • Professional-grade quality
  • Amazing sampling features
  • 2gb of internal memory, save up to 360 minutes

7. Akai Professional MPC Studio Music Production Controller

The MPC studio is one of the best-selling drum machines in the market and there are plenty of reasons for that, and with the upgraded looks and features of this version, you will have even more reasons.

Designed to make you express yourself, with its innovative 16 thick pads that are velocity and pressure sensitive, you will have more room to express and be creative. The LED light under each pad lights up every time it is hit, giving it more character and making you look like a pro while playing this magnificent instrument.

With its large knobs, you can easily adjust the effect parameters, levels or whatever you want to assign to those knobs, which makes using this drum machine a whole lot easier.

Having 7gb of sounds that were recorded with the highest of quality and performance will ensure that never run out of sounds to add to your mixes or pads. The applications and sounds that you can produce with this drum machine are virtually limitless. You’re going to have to try it for yourself to know how much fun this one could get.

Product Highlights:

  • 16 pressure and velocity sensitive pads
  • 4 knobs for extra control
  • 7gb of sounds

8. PylePro Portable Tabletop Pad Digital Drum Kit

No matter how much you like drum machines the way they are designed makes them completely different from, you know, real drums! If you’re into real drum kits but you simply can’t afford to have that huge of a kit lying around or would just like to easily take the drum kit anywhere you go, then this will be the perfect solution for you.

This drum machine is designed in a way that replicates the design of a drum kit but in a smaller and more compact way, bringing you the best of a real drum kit and drum machines.

If you’re a professional who can’t take a drum kit everywhere you go, or you are new to drums and you would like to learn it without having to get the huge kit, this drum machine is designed to do just that.

Since you can power this drum machine using either an AC power supply or batteries, you will be able to use this drum machine virtually anywhere you go.

As it’s equipped with high-quality speakers, you can easily use this machine to play for a small crowd. If you want to have a private jamming session, you can simply plug the headphones in, and you have got yourself a private jamming session.

For extra functionality, you can easily connect this machine to either a PC or Mac using a USB cable. Once connected, it’ll work as a MIDI controller. In addition to that, the control center of this drum machine allows you to edit, record and control your audio in whatever way you want.

Product Highlights:

  • Drum Kit design
  • High-quality speakers for jamming sessions
  • Easily connect to Mac or PC

9. Akai Professional White 25-key Ultra-Portable Drum Pad

With such a small and compact design, this is a drum machine that is designed to fit in the smallest of bags. If you’re looking for a drum machine that you can easily carry around wherever you go, this model won’t let you down.

The 25 keys of the keyboard are elegantly designed to look attractive and to give you much more control and make using the device a whole lot easier. With the velocity and pressure sensitive technologies that are built into those keys, you can be very expressive and creative when using them to create music exactly the way you want.

To give you even more control and make using the device easier, you will find 8 thick MPC pads that are also velocity sensitive. Being velocity and pressure sensate is something that makes a huge difference when using the keys.

You can easily power this drum machine using a USB. As long as you have a nearby device with a USB connection, you’ll always have enough power to get creative with your music.

The MIDI editor is designed to add more customization capabilities,  letting you customize your hardware and software using your computer, which gives you the creative freedom to do pretty much anything you want.

Product Highlights:

  • 25 keys, 8 MPC pads, and 8 knobs mean extra control
  • Compact and easy to carry around
  • USB powered