Drum Kit position (Death Metal friendly)

Obliterator

Junior Member
Hi,

I Have an issue with setting up my kit to a position that'll suit fast drumming. The current position I have kinda bothers me, so I was wondering if anyone who plays this kind of music could post a couple of pictures of their setup (that mainly focuses on the pedals and snare position) ? Just so I'll have an idea. Thanks in advance!
 

DA-Drummer

Member
I have seen a lot of metal kits, and the one that always remembered was the setup of ken bedene. His cymbals are kinda high, but i hang them a bit lower. Snare is flat. It's setup so that you can access al things very easy without moving forward and backward. You have to see a video from him :p

Here is the kit:


And here is a video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ugrMvjIsVFI
 

Hollywood Jim

Platinum Member
I have seen a lot of metal kits, and the one that always remembered was the setup of ken bedene. His cymbals are kinda high, but i hang them a bit lower. Snare is flat. It's setup so that you can access al things very easy without moving forward and backward. You have to see a video from him :p

Here is the kit:

Looks good to me.
The spacing of the drums needs to be correct for your particular reach.
For me, it looks like the floor tom is a little too close to the snare. At least for my reach.
And I would bring the hi hat down and forward a little closer to that black microphone.




.
 

beyondbetrayal

Platinum Member
toms should be low and as flat as you can get without hitting the rim.. legs around 90 degree angle... i have my cymbals as low as i can have them without it affecting my tom hits... .playing fast requires endurance and practice... reaching will slow you down and tire you out... tighter skins are nice for rebound as well.

I don't have photos but in this video i made you can see my cymbals are lower and everything is flat... also i'm not moving too much

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rL4k_P8fCUQ
 

GruntersDad

Administrator - Mayor
Staff member
I have seen a lot of metal kits, and the one that always remembered was the setup of ken bedene. His cymbals are kinda high, but i hang them a bit lower. Snare is flat. It's setup so that you can access al things very easy without moving forward and backward. You have to see a video from him :p

Here is the kit:


And here is a video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ugrMvjIsVFI
Only thing I dont like about this set up is the hi hat is back too far. the back of the pedal should be even with the back of the bass drum pedal. the right hand one, not the slave. That way you aren't sitting near sideways with your legs too far apart. You can see how close the hihat is to the throne
 

GruntersDad

Administrator - Mayor
Staff member
toms should be low and as flat as you can get without hitting the rim.. legs around 90 degree angle... i have my cymbals as low as i can have them without it affecting my tom hits... .playing fast requires endurance and practice... reaching will slow you down and tire you out... tighter skins are nice for rebound as well.

I don't have photos but in this video i made you can see my cymbals are lower and everything is flat... also i'm not moving too much

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rL4k_P8fCUQ
I don't like the 90 degree leg thing. That means one is pointing north and one due west. Way too much angle. Mine are about 45
 

porter

Platinum Member
I don't like the 90 degree leg thing. That means one is pointing north and one due west. Way too much angle. Mine are about 45
I think he means 90 degrees to the floor, not spread.

I think those cymbals are ridiculously high. For the most efficiency of movement, you should combine fast transportation with small distances, no? I keep all my cymbals below eye level and don't have any problems with speed.

Tom angles being as flat as possible makes some sense, but it's not really essential IMO. Just don't go over the 35-45 degree range.

As for setting up from the ground up, set your throne down, and then your bass drum at a natural position away from your feet. Then play around with your leg spread and do some tapping to figure out what angle of spread makes you feel comfortable, and finish setting your pedal. Make sure you have enough room for the snare. Then, close your eyes and grab some sticks, and imagine playing the snare. Pause at the end of a stroke and open your eyes, and that's about where you should put your snare. Then, just build the rest of your setup around that in whatever priority order you like.

You can find videos of my setup in my signature. If you want some further content on this topic, Derek Roddy's DVD "Playing With Your Drums" has some good discussions on it, plus some blistering performances by him (if you're into that).
 
T

TwoCables

Guest
It looks to me like the kit pictured works very well for DA-Drummer's friend Ken. Watch the video. It looks perfectly ergonomic for him.


Hi,

I Have an issue with setting up my kit to a position that'll suit fast drumming. The current position I have kinda bothers me, so I was wondering if anyone who plays this kind of music could post a couple of pictures of their setup (that mainly focuses on the pedals and snare position) ? Just so I'll have an idea. Thanks in advance!
My best advice is to just take the whole kit apart and put it back together one piece at a time, making sure that it's as comfortable to play as possible so that it's easy to play as possible. Ergonomics is the key here, for any style really. Playing your drums should be easy; they shouldn't be an obstacle at all.

So, start with maybe the stool and the pedals (and the bass drum). Then maybe add the snare or the hi-hats, or both. Get this basic configuration set up as ergonomically and as perfectly as you can. Then, put the toms in the best and most comfortable position. Do the same with the cymbals.

As long as the kit feels like it's perfectly ergonomic for you, then it should work very well, just like Ken's setup. Also, notice how relaxed he is. I bet that he barely breaks a sweat at his gigs.
 

Ham

Member
Everybody is different, the answer isn't going to be how other people set their kit's up, trial and error is going to be your only resolve.
 

porter

Platinum Member
If you think that jumping up two and a half feet to hit your crashes is "intended to provide optimum comfort and to avoid stress or injury"... so be it. But that's a comfort level thing, and if we're talking efficiency, then logically, you should set yourself up with the least distance between items to travel.
 
T

TwoCables

Guest
If you think that jumping up two and a half feet to hit your crashes is "intended to provide optimum comfort and to avoid stress or injury"... so be it. But that's a comfort level thing, and if we're talking efficiency, then logically, you should set yourself up with the least distance between items to travel.
Who's jumping up two and a half feet?

Here's Ken on that kit in the photo:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ugrMvjIsVFI
 

Slippy

Member
this is a loaded question. its all about how you like it, no one can tell you how to set ip a kit to play speed metal.... my only advise is Metal = speed and that means things need to be close and easy access. the pictures above is a great set up my only issue would be the cymbals are too high for my personal tastes.
 
T

TwoCables

Guest
this is a loaded question. its all about how you like it, no one can tell you how to set ip a kit to play speed metal.... my only advise is Metal = speed and that means things need to be close and easy access. the pictures above is a great set up my only issue would be the cymbals are too high for my personal tastes.
It depends on how high you sit or how tall you are. Check out the video of the drummer playing this setup:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ugrMvjIsVFI
 

porter

Platinum Member
I saw the video. The height of the player has nothing to do with it. To travel from his toms to his crashes he has to move 2+ feet every time, so, if he set them lower, he'd be able to travel the same distance in less time or with less speed requirement, no? Thereby being more efficient, and so on...
 

Obliterator

Junior Member
. If you want some further content on this topic, Derek Roddy's DVD "Playing With Your Drums" has some good discussions on it, plus some blistering performances by him (if you're into that).
YES! I've checked it out a couple of times. One of them who sting like a serpent, killer drumming indeed! Learned a lot off that tutorial..
 
T

TwoCables

Guest
I saw the video. The height of the player has nothing to do with it. To travel from his toms to his crashes he has to move 2+ feet every time, so, if he set them lower, he'd be able to travel the same distance in less time or with less speed requirement, no? Thereby being more efficient, and so on...
But look how easily he plays the entire kit. It's as if the cymbals are only a few inches away from him. So I'm saying that for him, that cymbal placement is probably just about perfect.

It kind of reminds me of Marco Minneman a little bit. Some of his cymbals are very high for a pro player at his level, yet it works beautifully for him.
 

beyondbetrayal

Platinum Member
Ya i meant legs 90 to the floor... give or take... and toms flat.. but not 90 either.. you basicly want your sticks hitting flat.. that gives you the most rebound.. so weather thats 10 or 18 or 22 degrees... you are the one playing. seat height changes everything too.

Do what is comfortable where your not reaching. that's the only advice.

and i agree with the cymbals.. that would not be ideal for death metal no matter how tall you are... it may work. and to each their own.. but when your playing extreme metal at fast speeds it would be hard to do stuff on the snare and those crashes back and fourth.

you should be able to hit all your drums while sitting pretty still also
 

Aeolian

Platinum Member
This kind of set up is also pretty common amongst the "gospel chop" drummers. Things flat and laid out right in front of your legs. It's actually more efficient than you'd think, compared to the dashboard set up where you're down with the drums up in front of your face.
 

porter

Platinum Member
But look how easily he plays the entire kit. It's as if the cymbals are only a few inches away from him. So I'm saying that for him, that cymbal placement is probably just about perfect.

It kind of reminds me of Marco Minneman a little bit. Some of his cymbals are very high for a pro player at his level, yet it works beautifully for him.
I agree- he looks very comfortable, but he could, in all likelihood, play faster/more efficiently if they were lower. Anyways, I'm not arguing for comfort, I'm just saying that in pure mechanical terms, small distances = greater efficiency.

Anyways, if you're willing to deal with that distance, then that's fine- but an optimized for speed setup will not have that kind of placement.
 
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