There’s no doubt that the drummer is one of the most important members of the band. They keep the pace and tempo of every song, and they set the tone for the whole band from start to finish. If the drummer is having an off day, the whole band suffers from it. Without a beat to keep the rhythm to, songs lack interest, can sound like nails on a chalkboard, and audiences are left wanting more. In order to provide the best experience to audiences, drummers need to use in-ear monitors to follow what the other members of the band are doing, and be able to adjust accordingly. What’s more, without proper noise cancelling ear monitors, drummers can suffer from hearing loss, damage to their eardrums, and more. So not only do in-ear monitors keep the drummer on task more easily, they keep them safe on stage as well. Here’s everything you need to know about the best in-ear monitors for drummers that are available on the market today.
Now that we’ve gotten the basics out of the way, let’s look at the best in-ear monitors in several categories: overall winner, the runner-up for the best in-ear monitors, best professional in-ear monitors, best entry-level, and best economy choice for in-ear monitors.
Best In-ear Monitors for Drummers
Runner-up for Best In-ear Monitors for Drummer
Best Professional In-ear Monitors for Drummers
Best Entry-level In-ear Monitors for Drummers
Best Economy In-ear Monitors for Drummers
Audio Technica makes a number of products that are loved by the professional and amateur music industry, including these balanced in-ear monitor headphones. They are perfect for drummers, as well as bass players, who need to keep the beat of a song strong and on tempo. They offer a modern and sleek design and fit your ears like a dream. They have superior sound quality, offer improved functionality over other models on the market, and are comfortable to wear for hours on end. With balanced drivers, these in-ear monitors don’t irritate your ears, and offer you hours wearability. The earpieces themselves have silicone covers that come in three sizes: small, medium, and large. There are also foam earpieces so you can adjust the size of the monitor to suit your needs. You can remove the cable for easy storage and portability, and this great set comes with its own carrying case to keep your in-ear monitors safe when you aren’t wearing them. They offer excellent noise cancellation and isolation so you can focus on what you need to do when it comes to playing the drums. They are designed to provide quality and experience for everyone from entry level drummers to more experienced drummers. There aren’t really any downfalls we noticed about these in-ear monitors, although no product is perfect. One thing we did think of was the fact that detaching the cable from the monitor itself meant that you could lose the monitor or misplace the cable, rendering your in-ear monitor virtually useless. However, if you use the carrying case that comes with this kit, that shouldn’t be a problem. Depending on how you will use these monitors, they should meet the basic needs of every musician. For its durability, dependability, and complete kit, we like the Audio Technica as our top choice for the best in-ear monitors for drummers.
Choosing a runner-up for the best in-ear monitors is tough when there are so many good quality monitors on the market. We liked the Nuforce Hem Dynamic In-Ear Monitors because of their studio quality noise cancellation and audio sound. These monitors get the second place spot for best in-ear monitor because of all the extras that it comes with; while it is great to have multiple features installed on your monitors, when musicians are practicing or performing, they don’t have time or the ability to take calls. The added features, like the ability to answer the phone isn’t necessary. Of course, if you are using your in-ear monitors as regular headphones, then this is a great feature. But because this is a review for the best in-ear monitors for drummers, we’re assuming they don’t want to take calls while working. The monitors are made from silicone and soft foam. They offer comfort and reduce ear fatigue when worn over long periods of time. This is great for drummers who have studio time booked or are performing a concert. These monitors are available in two colors: charcoal and crystal white. They are durable, and come with a carry case to store your monitors when you aren’t using them. They offer high quality sound and ergonomic design for comfort, stability, and long lasting audio quality.
Professional drummers know a thing or two about what should go into a great pair of in-ear monitors. The EarTech Quad Driver delivers on their promise to provide a high quality product with a great sound that will last for years to come. This pair of monitors offers a detachable cable, which aren’t a fan of in general, but it is quite long so you are unlikely to lose it. There is good frequency range and response of up to 18 kHz, and the noise isolation is -26dB. They are hypoallergenic and made from hard acrylic shells that fit in your ear like a glove on your hand. You can have these in-ear monitors fully customized to fit just your ear by taking them to a trained healthcare professional to have them moulded for your ear. These are an excellent choice for drummers and bass players because there is a great deal of noise cancellation aspects, as well as design elements that make this a great product. The Quad monitor is a professional grade in-ear monitor that won’t disappoint. While it is great to go custom, be aware that having your in-ear monitors shaped by a professional healthcare worker will cost additional dollars, and could take some time to achieve. With none of the distraction and all of the performance, we like the Quad as our choice for the best professional in-ear monitor for drummers.
For the beginner drummers in the group, having an in-ear monitoring system to protect your ears is vital to the longevity and health of your hearing. If you think you can get away without having to invest in a pair of in-ear monitors, think again. Literally every professional drummer has them and uses them on a regular basis. If you want to be like the pros, you need to act like them. The MEE audio M6 in-ear monitors are a great choice for beginner because they offer just enough features to get you started, but not too many that you will become distracted while trying to play the drums. They offer a one-size-fits-all model and clear sound with deep bass. They are comfortable enough to wear for hours at a time, and they’ll protect your hearing by cancelling external noise without being too loud. The monitors include a mic attached to the cable, volume control and a remote that you can link to your smartphone or mobile tablet. There is a carrying case, which is important for storage and protection of your in-ear monitors when you aren’t wearing them. What’s great about these in-ear monitors is that they actually come with 6 additional sets of ear covers so you don’t have to worry about replacing your monitors all the time. This is a great value and a great feature for beginners who are not looking to invest a lot of money in to their first pair of in-ear monitors.
For the budget conscious of the group, the Brainwavz B100 in-ear monitors will get the job done for drummers on a budget. They offer balanced driver technology that provides good quality sound. They offer a good amount of ear protection - which is very important for drummers. They have a great ergonomic design, and is made from high quality parts. It comes with extra silicone earbuds so you are getting a lot of value for your money. It does come with a branded storage case, which is a nice feature considering the economical price of these in-ear monitors. For drummers, the most important thing is protecting their ears, only secondary to sound quality. The Brainwavz delivers a good quality sound and protection, so this is a great option to get you started, or to replace your existing in-ear monitors in a pinch - say, if you forgot your more robust in-ear monitors at home.
Probably the single most important aspect of in-ear monitors is the noise isolation factors. Without the ability to zone in on their drumming, drummers can lose their place, and cause the whole song to go array. Noise isolation and noise cancelling also helps them focus on what is coming through the monitors without being distracted by other sounds on stage or during a live show. Look for a pair of in-ear monitors that offer high quality levels of noise isolation.
Of course, you want in-ear monitors to sound good. The quality of sound will greatly impact a drummer’s ability to play well, because without hearing what is going on in the band, they cannot ensure the song is being played as intended. Some economy models of in-ear monitors don’t offer high quality sound, but that doesn’t mean you can’t find some for a good price. Professional in-ear monitors offer superior sound and noise cancelling abilities, as you might imagine.
Quality of Construction
When it comes to the quality of construction, there is a direct correlation between how much you pay, and how well made a product is. This is true of any product really. But that doesn’t mean that you can’t find a great pair of in-ear monitors for a decent price. You want a set of in-ear monitors that is going to last you a long time. While they are not overly expensive, you should buy the best you can afford to ensure longevity and durability. Most in-ear monitors are made from plastic and rubber.
A storage case is a pretty common accessory that comes included with most in-ear monitor purchases. If your in-ear monitors don’t come with a storage case, you should invest in one to keep them clean and safe when they are not being used. This also helps to transport them without worrying about damage along the way. You can pick up a storage case for a few dollars at any music store, or you can get create and use a different kind of container that strikes your fancy. Either way, you should be using something to protect your in-ear monitors when they aren’t helping you rock out on stage.
Length of Cable
Before you ask, it is best to avoid in-ear monitors that offer any kind of wireless technology. When it comes to making the most of a performance, you want to reduce the likelihood of being disconnected from any device in which you are hooked up. This goes double duty for your in-ear monitors. Wireless devices run the risk of interfering with other wireless devices, such as your in-ear monitors, so most professionals will always use wired monitors to eliminate that threat altogether.
Choosing the right in-ear monitors for any drummer is a personal choice. Some will want larger in-ear monitors and some will want smaller ones. Some will want a lot of features and some will want none. This list provides a good range of options for everyone’s needs and wants, but our choice for the best overall in-ear monitors for drummers are the Audio Technica ATH-IM02 SonicPro Balanced In-Ear Monitor Headphones for their superior sound and ear protection design. When you are ready to buy your next, or first, set of in-ear monitors, consider some of the great models on this list. Rock on!
Read More: Best Drum Machine Reviews
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