For students (and their parents):
Drum sets can be very expensive! Buying your first drum kit might be a big decision – acoustic or electronic set up? I often get this question thrown at me, the first option should always be an acoustic drum kit.
However, I also understand that acoustic drum kits may not be suitable for many households, especially with today’s high density living. If one of your main considerations is the need to keep the volume down, I recommend to convert a acoustic drum set converted with mesh heads and low noise cymbals. This way you can still sit behind a “real” drum kit with standard sized bass, snare and tom’s without compromising on dynamics.
Cymbals are a little tricky! There are several options to reduce the noise of cymbals like old bed linen, cymbal mutes or plastic cymbals. In my opinion those measures don’t go far enough. Yes they are a lot quieter, but the cymbals sound dead, without response and stick rebound anywhere near an acoustic cymbal. I recommend low noise cymbals, although they are a little more expensive ( they keep their re sell value unlike other options) and they allow you to practice with low noise ( 80% quieter) including all advantages of an acoustic cymbal set!
The best thing about that set up is that you bother your neighbors and you can still practice with the feel an dynamics closest to a acoustic set up. You can convert back at anytime, so in reality you have to drum set with the best of both worlds.
Get an idea how this solution sounds like here.