Last Updated on July 28, 2021 by Danny
Drum rack is something that is rarely noticed but always needed. It is what holds your precious drums and cymbals and allows you to play on them without worrying about some mishap. What kind of Drum rack you want depends on your drum kit and your needs.
Most drummers look towards drum racks for their hardware requirements. We are going to look into why drum racks are important and list the seven best drum racks that are out there!
Contents on this page
- How Do You Know It Is Time to Buy a Drum Rack System?
- What Makes a Great Drum Rack?
- The 7 Best Drum Racks Reviews – Our Round-Up
- 1. Gibraltar GCS-450C Road Series Chrome 4-post Drum Rack – Best Overall
- 2. Gibraltar GSVMS Stealth Vertical Rack – Budget Option
- 3. Gibraltar GSDS Drum Set Rack – Best All-in-one Option
- 4. Drum Workshop CPRK MAIN Rack – Best Mid-Range Option
- 5. Pearl Icon 3-sided Curved Drum Rack –
- 6. Gibraltar GRS300C Road Series Drum Rack
- 7. PDP PDSRPK05 Main Rack Package
- Key Considerations When Choosing a Drum Rack
- Essential Drum Rack Expansion Parts and Mounts
- What is a Drum Rack Used for?
- Why Are Drum Racks Crucial for Drummers?
- What Drum Racks are good for Beginners?
How Do You Know It Is Time to Buy a Drum Rack System?
This is a question that every drummer has asked himself at one time or the other. Thankfully answering it isn’t all that complicated. If you are a somewhat rough drummer who is happily playing on his haphazardly placed drum kit, then you probably do not want or need a drum rack.
However, if you are someone who will appreciate a well-positioned drum kit that has all the components lined up exactly where you want them to be, then a drum rack system would be perfect for you. They are especially great for heavy-duty drummers who need extremely stable kits.
What Makes a Great Drum Rack?
The most important ingredient in making a great drum rack is flexibility. The more flexible a drum rack, the easier a drummer will be able to set up all the drums and cymbals in the most ergonomic position.
The stability of a drum rack is another important feature you should look into, especially if you are playing a hybrid kit and have to mount a lot of pads, modules, and maybe even a laptop.
Memory lock is another feature you need to look out for. With this, you can make sure that your components are exactly where you want them to be, gig after gig, song after song. You will be saving yourself the time normally spent finding the perfect position before each session.
Finally, a great drum rack should be easy to set up and easy to break down!
The 7 Best Drum Racks Reviews – Our Round-Up
1. Gibraltar GCS-450C Road Series Chrome 4-post Drum Rack – Best Overall
This is a large curved drum rack that can accommodate almost all kits. It has over 10 feet of mounting space, so you can easily add additional instruments without being constrained by space. You can easily fit a seven-piece drum set with 6 cymbals, or more! It is even big enough to be used as a double bass rack.
It comes with four memory locks, so your components remain where they are. You even get cymbal stands, so that’s an added bonus. Everything is chromed too, making it a sick-looking drum rack. The construction is solid and the whole rack is very stable, no matter how many components you add to it. This is primarily because of the wide rubber feet and the amazing clamps. All this makes it ideal for heavy-duty drumming.
This rack surely lives up to the “Road Series” name. Initial setup takes less than two hours and any assembly and disassembly after that are quick and easy.
The main drawback of this is that all the bars are at the same height. You will not be able to raise or lower just one side without additional hardware.
2. Gibraltar GSVMS Stealth Vertical Rack – Budget Option
If you have a limited budget, this is without question the drum rack to buy. It features an unconventional non-tripod design that gives it a small footprint, so you can place it even on the smallest of stages. Since it has such a simple and small design, it is quite easy to tear down and assemble.
While it is small, you can mount a double bass pedal in it, thanks to a small bend in the rod. It is compatible with multiple accessories too! The anti-skid feet make sure the vibrations are limited and the nylon bearings make sure that the toms and cymbals don’t move.
However, the small size does have its drawbacks. You will only be able to mount a limited number of components to it.
3. Gibraltar GSDS Drum Set Rack – Best All-in-one Option
The Gibraltar GSDS comes with almost all the hardware you need. You can mount your rack toms, two crash cymbals, and a ride cymbal without any issue. It has a unique U-shaped bar that lets your bass drum snugly fit under it. No more crossbar that makes your whole setup look bulkier than it needs to be. The cymbal arms are quite articulate and you get good positional flexibility.
The design is very good at saving space. The U-shaped bar greatly reduces the footprint. There is also no tripod, further reducing the footprint. You get a nice low-profile drum rack that is still able to accommodate most drum sets.
The rack is also quite lightweight. The assembly and disassembly are quick due to the hex locking nuts and rubber stoppers. All of this makes it great for people who travel with their rack a lot.
The only major limitation to this is the max bass drum size. The U-shaped bar will not be able to hold bass drums bigger than 22”. Other than that limitation it is a great rack!
4. Drum Workshop CPRK MAIN Rack – Best Mid-Range Option
The CRPK is a part of Drum Workshop’s insanely popular 9000 series of hardware. It has thick steel tubing that makes sure it lasts many years and is extremely stable.
The design is minimalistic and it lacks a tripod, giving it a small footprint that is ideal for small stages. Even though it is made of thick steel tubing, it is still quite lightweight and easily portable. The soft-grip rubber feet help limit the vibration of the frame during performances. All the given clamps have memory locks too, even though you do lose some tubing space because of that.
The rack is also quite easy to set up and dismantle! You get a couple of cymbal arms and accessories with this rack, you can purchase even more if you need to!
All this makes this the best possible mid-range option. It will be great for you, irrespective of whether you are a beginner or a seasoned veteran!
This is the most premium drum rack on this list. It is extremely expensive and is primarily targeted towards professionals. It has impeccable quality and amazing features, ensuring any professional needs are satisfied.
It is a big rack, there are three sides to it and each side is quite long. You can set up a gigantic drum set on it without any issues. The square rails are made of aluminum, making them quite light. This is great for gigging drummers as transportation becomes less of a hassle.
It has non-skid slip-proof rubber feet so that it does not budge an inch no matter how much you pummel on it. The clamps are also extremely firm, they pretty much remain frozen wherever you fix them.
All of this has made this an extremely popular drum rack in spite of its high price. If you have the bucks to spend, this is the one for you!
Here is another drum rack from Gibraltar’s Road series. This is a much simpler design than the GCS-450C and is considerably cheaper. It is not big enough for an extensive kit but is enough for your basic kit with a bass drum and a few toms.
However, the GRS300C can be expanded. If you get the GRS123C rack, you can attach it to this rack and significantly expand the amount of space you have. You can actually attach two GRS125Cs to it, making the expanded rack enough for even the largest of drum sets.
All of this makes the GRS300C a great drum rack that is affordable, durable, and extremely expandable. This makes it a great choice for someone who wants to expand in the future but has a limited budget now.
PDP is kind of a sister brand of DW that produces products aimed towards consumers with a lower budget. These products have the same robustness that people associate with DW, except for the lower cost and lack of fancy features.
The PSDRPK05 is a mid-range rack that has great expandability and adjustability. It has a compact design but is still big enough to accommodate a standard drum set with two cymbals. The setup is also simplified a bit thanks to the inbuilt level!
It has heavy-duty chrome-plated steel tubing, therefore making the whole rack very durable and stable. The clamps are reinforced and have a lot of positional flexibility, so you can set up your configuration any way you like. It is also compatible with almost any third-party accessory too!
Key Considerations When Choosing a Drum Rack
Design and Stability
A drum rack needs to be able to handle the weight of your entire kit without an issue. It should not move, it should not tip, and it should especially not break. Usually large and bulky drum racks provide maximal stability, but you can still find compact ones that are plenty stable.
Drum racks inherently vibrate due to the instruments. When the instruments vibrate, the drum rack of course is going to vibrate. However, there are models that come with vibration absorption features. This ensures that your instruments do not move during an intense performance.
Other design considerations you need to make are size and setup time. Usually, the larger the size the more drums and cymbals a rack can fit, but there are a few compact designs that are able to fit a surprisingly large number of components. Setup time basically comes down to how big the rack is and how many instruments you have.
Drum racks come in a range of spectrums, from ones where you can change anything to ones where you can change everything.
Drummers who like changing the position of their parts and adding or changing parts should get a highly customizable drum rack. You could simply get a base frame and keep adding to it as your drum set grows.
On the other hand, if you are fairly certain that you won’t be adding any new drums, you can simply get a drum rack that is just enough for your present needs. This should save you some money. However, remember that you will have to buy a new rack if you decide to expand in the future.
Ease of Use
Ease of use is critical especially if you are going to be moving it around or adding components to it. A rack should be able to easily be assembled and broken down. Adding extensions and accessories should be easy and without hassle. Repositioning should be quick and simple, even when you are fully set up.
If you are someone who gigs a lot or constantly changes his configuration, ease of use should be high up your priority list.
The best drum rack is not the most expensive one, it is the one that gives you maximum value. If you are on a budget, stick to it and get something that fulfills your needs. Avoid splurging on unwanted extra features if you do not need them.
On the other hand, do not buy the extremely cheap stuff as it will not last long and will not feel good. You will be literally throwing your money away.
However, if you actually need a lot of features, buy one with those features even if it costs more. Your future self will thank you for that.
Essential Drum Rack Expansion Parts and Mounts
Toms are the most numerous drum of any drum kit. If you have too many of them you could end up cramming them together. This will easily have a negative effect on your playing.
However, With a tom holder, you will be able to orderly arrange your toms so that their positions are suited for your playing. Tom holders also enable you to have a lot more toms than you would normally be able to.
Cymbal Boom Arm
Cymbal stands are big and cumbersome. If you have to carry one with you for all your gigs, they can be a pain in the neck. An alternate solution would be to use a cymbal boom arm. This will give you the stability of a cymbal stand while being much more portable.
All you have to do is attach the cymbal boom arm to your exciting drum rack and you will be able to easily add an extra cymbal to your setup.
Multi-clamps are one of the most commonly used expansion parts for drum racks. They allow you to mount your snare drum, extra toms, pads, percussion instruments and accessories to your rack.
They are simple to use and quite versatile. You will be able to mount almost any component from any company with them.
Electronic Mounting Clamp
Electronics have infiltrated everything, including drumming. So many drummers use multiple electronic instruments during their sessions, from drum modules to cymbal pads. So, how do you mount them?
An electronic mounting clamp is the simplest solution. You will be able to mount almost any electronic of your choice to your rack with it.
What is a Drum Rack Used for?
In the simplest terms, a drum rack is used to hold your drumming components. Everything from your drums, cymbals, and even your hardware can be set up onto a drum rack. Even electronic components like pads, modules, and laptops can be mounted on it.
Drum racks are commonly used by touring drummers. This is because drum racks come with memory locks that make sure that the position of all the components is always exactly the same. It is very hard to set up all the components exactly right before every gig, so a memory lock is a boon for them. Your tom is never too close and your bass is never too far, everything is always where you want it to be.
The other demographic who use drum racks are people with a large drum setup. With a drum rack, you will be able to mount five or even six toms! This is why drum racks are especially common among rock and metal drummers.
Why Are Drum Racks Crucial for Drummers?
Choosing between a drum rack and a normal drum stand can be a conundrum for drummers. Both of them have their advantages and disadvantages, but many professional drummers favor a drum rack. There are many reasons for that.
For starters, a drum rack saves you a lot of time. You will no longer have to set up individual stands for each component before every gig. All your instruments can be quickly and correctly positioned in a consistent manner with a drum rack. You will also get much more positional flexibility with a drum rack!
Drum racks are also much more stable than stands. A good drum rack will ensure that none of your drums or cymbals move an inch, no matter how hard you pound on them. These are just some reasons why drum racks are crucial for drummers.
However, we do not mean drum racks are always the right answer. In a few cases, like playing on a small stage, you will be better off with drum stands.
What Drum Racks are good for Beginners?
Drum racks are universal, their benefits are pretty much the same whether you are a newbie or a world-renowned drummer. For a beginner, the best drum rack would be a budget drum rack. There is no need for you to splurge a lot of money as all drum racks do pretty much the same thing. You will not be able to benefit from an expensive one. The one thing you should look out for is the ease of setup.
Drum racks are a great alternative to drum stands. They are more stable, have better expandability, and make setup easier too. Most drummers will be able to greatly benefit from them. Just having the best drum kit is not enough, you will need the best drum rack to get the maximum out of it!
For most people, the Drum Workshop CPRK MAIN Rack will give the best value. It has the great build quality and is feature rich! However, if you are on a limited budget, the Gibraltar GSVMS Stealth Vertical Rack would be a good option for you. While it is small, it has a good built quality and is big enough for most beginner drum kits.
Hopefully, this list of the best drum racks has been helpful to you.