6 Best Drum Dampeners

Best Drum Dampeners

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Most drummers find themselves needing to dampen their drums. Whether your kit is producing harsh overtones or simply not giving the sound you want, putting something on each drum typically changes the tone to suit your taste.

Dampening a drum is a fairly simple concept. You could do it with household items. However, a few drum companies have come out with some killer drum dampeners that make the process a bit easier. Let’s check them out!

What are the Best Drum Dampeners?

Image Recommended ProductsProduct Features Price
BEST
Big Fat Snare Drum Steve’s Donut
  • Snare drum dampener
  • Lowers pitch of snare
  • Boosts attack
BUDGET
Revolution TruTones Dampeners
  • 6 pack of dampening pads
  • Multiple sizes to choose from
  • Naturally tacky and non-oily
PREMIUM
Snareweight M80
  • Magnets in the strap
  • Leather strap bounces when the drum is hit
  • Mounts onto the rim of a drum
Evans E-Rings Rock Pack
  • Transparent rings to put on drum heads
  • Shaped to fit each drum size
  • The rings do heavy muffling
RTOM Moongel Damper Pads
  • 6 sticky pads
  • Slightly dampens tones
  • Can be placed anywhere
Meinl Cymbals Drum Honey Dampening Gel Pads
  • 6 drum dampening gels
  • Sticks to drums and cymbals
  • Washable with soap and water

In-Depth Drum Dampener Reviews

BEST

Big Fat Snare Drum Steve’s Donut

An excellent drum-dampening tool that sits on top of your snare drum head. It lowers the pitch as well as reduces overtones to provide a vintage, thuddy snare sound.
Sounds
5.0
Ease Of Use
5.0
Versatility
4.0
Value
5.0

    Big Fat Snare Drum Steve’s Donut Review

    Steve’s Donut from Big Fat Snare Drum is not only designed as a snare damper. It also lowers the pitch of your snare drum so that you get a vintage snare tone. This product is a great accessory for any drummer to have if they want to dramatically change the sound of their snare drum.

    While it lowers the pitch of the snare, it also increases the attack, giving you a whopping thud sound. It’s the perfect tool to get the snare sound that everyone had in the 60s and 70s. That sound is also quite popular in Christian Contemporary worship music.

    It has a finger cutout near the bottom that makes it easy to pick up. So, you could remove it very quickly between songs if you needed to.

    Features:

    • Snare drum dampener
    • Lowers pitch of snare
    • Boosts attack

    Pros

    • Provides vintage snare tone
    • Enhances ghost notes
    • Easy to pick up from snare

    Cons

    • Has very specific uses
    BUDGET

    Revolution TruTones Drum Dampener 6-pack

    These tacky pads stick onto the drum heads to dampen the sound and minimize overtones. They offer adjustable dampening and are an essential tool for studio and live use.
    Sounds
    4.5
    Ease Of Use
    5.0
    Versatility
    5.0
    Value
    5.0

      Revolution TruTones Drum Dampener 6-pack Review

      The Revolution TruTones drum dampening pads are an excellent product for snare drum dampening.

      These affordable tacky pads stay firmly put on top of the drumhead, and they are very effective at reducing unwanted resonance and sustain.

      One of the best things about these pads is that they don’t muffle the sound of the snare drum and toms too much – so you still get a good, punchy sound without all the ring.

      They’re very easy to carry to shows and rehearsals with the included carry case, and the various sizes offer good flexibility for muffling adjustment if you need to change up your sound quickly.

      Overall, the Revolution TruTones drum dampening pads are an excellent choice for anyone looking for a high-quality, effective way to reduce resonance and sustain on their snare drum or toms.

      Features:

      • 6 pack of dampening pads
      • Multiple sizes to choose from
      • Naturally tacky and non-oily

      Pros

      • Includes various sizes which is useful for achieving the optimal sustain
      • Very affordable and effective drum dampening solution
      • Includes a convenient carry case for easy transportation

      Cons

      • Would benefit from including a few more size options
      PREMIUM

      Snareweight M80 Drum Dampener

      A leather drum dampening tool that eliminates overtones and helps to provide a punchy, focused snare drum sound. You can choose from various levels of dampening.
      Sounds
      4.5
      Ease Of Use
      4.0
      Versatility
      4.0
      Value
      4.0

        Snareweight M80 Drum Dampener Review

        The Snareweight M80 is one of the more unique drum mufflers out there. It’s basically a leather strap that attaches to the rim of the drum with the use of a clamp. It has some epic features that make it a strong contender to consider.

        The main feature is that the strap bounces off the drum whenever you hit it. This means that none of the attack is lost when the M80 is attached. It just eliminates the overtones. Most other drum dampeners kill the attack of the drum as well.

        The other feature of the M80 is that you can adjust how much it dampens the drum by folding the strap. It has magnets to keep the strap secure, allowing you to easily change the dampening mid-song.

        It’s a great snare drum damper thanks to the size, but you can fit it on all the other drums as well. At the end of the day, it’s a highly innovative product that works wonderfully as a quick dampening solution.

        Features:

        • Magnets in the strap
        • Leather strap bounces when the drum is hit
        • Mounts onto the rim of a drum

        Pros

        • Doesn’t eliminate any attack from a drum
        • Easily adjustable
        • Easy to use

        Cons

        • Expensive if you plan on getting one for each drum

        Evans E-Rings Rock Pack

        A selection of rings that are a great option when you are looking to dampen the tones across a whole drum set. They sit on top of the drum head and are very easy to use.
        Sounds
        3.5
        Ease Of Use
        4.5
        Versatility
        3.5
        Value
        4.0

          Evans E-Rings Rock Pack Review

          The Evans E-Rings are a great muffling option for when you need to dampen your whole drum kit. Getting a pack of these will allow you to put one on each drum to control all the unwanted overtones.

          The rings have a clear and transparent color which blends into the drum heads nicely. This is great if you prefer having a cleaner look on your drums.

          They’re also incredibly easy to use. Since they’re shaped to perfectly fit each drum, you just have to put them on the drum and they’ll fit like a glove. Just make sure to use the right-sized ring for the matching drum.

          The 14” ring, in particular, gives your snare drum a beefy and round sound which is good to have in studio settings.

          The final point to mention is that these drum dampening rings are fairly durable compared to most drum dampening tools. Since they have a simple design, they tend to last longer.

          Features:

          • Transparent rings to put on drum heads
          • Shaped to fit each drum size
          • The rings do heavy muffling

          Pros

          • You can barely see them on drum heads
          • Helps snare get a beefy sound
          • Durable

          Cons

          • No control over how much sound they dampen

          RTOM Moongel Damper Pads

          These self-adhesive pads are very popular amongst drummers and allow you to dampen specific areas on the drumhead to achieve the sound you want.
          Sounds
          4.5
          Ease Of Use
          4.5
          Versatility
          4.5
          Value
          3.5

            RTOM Moongel Damper Pads Review

            Moongels are the most popular drum dampening gels. You’ll see these on so many drum kits around the world. They’re inexpensive and highly useful, making them valuable tools for every drummer.

            Each pack of Moongels comes with 6 sticky pads. They’re sticky enough to be placed anywhere, even on cymbals. That’s what makes them so versatile. You can also cut them in half if you feel they’re doing too much dampening.

            They tend to get dirty when left on the drums for too long, but they can easily be cleaned with soap and water. If you regularly clean them, they can last up to years.

            They’re great for gigging with as you can keep the Moongel box in your stick or cymbal bag. If you’re looking for something that has multiple uses, Moongels are a good option. The ability to place them anywhere is why most drummers love them.

            Features:

            • 6 sticky pads
            • Slightly dampens tones
            • Can be placed anywhere

            Pros

            • Good for dampening cymbals as well as drums
            • Can be split in half for less dampening
            • Easily placeable

            Cons

            • They tend to get dirty over time

            Meinl Cymbals Drum Honey Dampening Gel Pads

            Another set of drum dampening pads but in a circular shape. Another good option if you want to dampen your whole kit, as they are easy to use and provide a consistent sound.
            Sounds
            4.0
            Ease Of Use
            4.5
            Versatility
            4.0
            Value
            4.0

              Meinl Cymbals Drum Honey Dampening Gel Pads Review

              The Meinl Cymbals Drum Honey Pads are essentially the same thing as the Moongels. However, they have a few small differences that may draw drummers to them instead.

              Firstly, each pad is quite small and in a circle shape. You typically won’t cut them in half as they’re small enough already. If you want to do more dampening, you can just stick a few more on the drum or cymbal.

              The best quality of these drum dampening gels is that they don’t scrunch up like other competitor gels tend to do. If that’s something that will bother you with the other ones, these are the perfect solution.

              They also last quite long thanks to the round shape. They don’t seem to be as sticky as Moongels, which some drummers may prefer.

              Features:

              • 6 drum dampening gels
              • Sticks to drums and cymbals
              • Washable with soap and water

              Pros

              • Durable round shape
              • Not as sticky as other drum dampening gels
              • The gels don’t scrunch up

              Cons

              • Some drummers won’t like the yellow color

              DIY Dampening vs Dampening Products

              A popular method of dampening drums is to stick tape on the drum heads. While this typically works fairly well, it often leaves residue on the head once you remove the tape. It’s also quite difficult to remove the tape if you’re in a hurry.

              So, brands have designed snare drum dampening tools to make things easier for drummers. Instead of getting toilet paper and a roll of duct tape out every time they want to kill some overtones, they can just put a few Moongels or a ring on a drum.

              DIY solutions will be cheaper, but specifically designed products will often make things much easier.

              When Should You Dampen Your Drums?

              Every drummer has preferences when it comes to sound. Some drummers like their drums to be wide and open while others prefer a tight and controlled sound.

              The more controlled you want your drums to sound, the more dampening you’re going to need to apply to the drum heads. Just be careful not to apply too much dampening as that will completely kill the tone of your drums.

              Whether you like your drums to sound open or tight, it’s always good to have drum dampeners on hand whenever you need them. All the drum mufflers above are great options to consider.

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