Purchasing drum equipment online is convenient and easy, but there’s a ton of places to shop. How do you know which one is the best? There’s several things to consider before purchasing online. I thought I would list a couple of stores here and share my own thoughts and experiences with them to help you make your decision.
If you’re looking for used gear, there’s no better choice than Reverb.com. Not only do they have an amazing selection. They treat their buyers and sellers very well! I have bought and sold many things on Reverb, and they are without a doubt the best place for used gear online. They have a huge selection, good prices, fair policies, and are just a great company all around.
Behind Reverb, you have Craigslist and Facebook. These are more classified type places, so use at your own risk. If you’re smart and cautious though, you can find some great deals.
Avoid Ebay for used gear (or anything) – There was a time when Ebay was the best used market for gear, but those days are long gone. Poor management, total and utter lack of seller protection has left Ebay a playground for scammers, hackers, and just outright criminals. Avoid at all costs. You will get ripped off, scammed, or cheated.
Best place to buy Cymbals – mycymbal.com otherwise known as Memphis Drum Shop are without a doubt the world’s greatest cymbal seller. They have a huge selection of cymbals, that are professionally demoed by pro drummers on their YouTube channel. Are you looking for a Medium A. Zildjian 18″ Crash? Well, on mycymbal.com you can listen to various demos of the model cymbal you’re looking for and pick the EXACT cymbal you want. In addition to that most items are free shipping, and since they’re in Memphis, Tennessee, there’s no sales tax! So if you see a price that says $179, you will pay $179 and no more! Their cymbals ship packed better than anything I’ve ever seen in my life. Their shipping containers could be dropped out of helicopters and the cymbal would still be fine after it crash landed on your doorstep!
Best place to buy acoustic drums (and cymbals) – Drum Center of Portsmouth. Much like Memphis Drum Shop, Drum Center of Portsmouth has a very popular YouTube channel where they post some of the best drum gear demos you can find online. They have great prices, a very friendly staff, most items are free shipping, and also like Memphis Drum Shop, no sales tax since they are located in New Hampshire!
Best place to buy e-Drums – E-Drum Center is a place that is basically the e-drum version of MDS and DCP. Another Tennessee based shop, so again there is no sales tax, and most items qualify for free shipping. The only problem with E-drum Center is they are often out of stock of many items. Since this is the case, my second go to for e-drums believe it or not, is musiciansfriend.com. They’re definitely not as good as any of the other stores on this list for customer service, but they usually have things in stock and often have sales. Shipping is usually fairly quick as well.
Places to avoid – As I mentioned before, avoid Ebay like it is the plague, it is an absolute horror show filled with people willingly breaking the law and trying to take advantage of you. Avoid Sweetwater – I know some people may be surprised at this suggestion, but I cannot stand buying things from Sweetwater. If someone designed a course on how to make the most intrusive and irritating salespeople of all time, it is Sweetwater. They have a bizarre, cult-like energy to their “Sales Engineers”, and If you buy anything from them, expect endless follow up calls, texts, and emails, for at least a year after you purchased anything. They are relentless and annoying, and eventually I just had to block their number. They are basically The Church of Scientology as a music store. Also, NOTHING IS EVER IN STOCK. They post videos about the latest cool drum set you click the link and it says available in 4 to 6 months. Sweetwater does have a great and very popular YouTube channel though. But their hard-sell practices are more than annoying.
Anyway, those are my go-to places to get gear online, and ones I avoid. I hope you found the list helpful!