5 Best TAMA Drum Kits (Top Picks For All Budgets)

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  • Learn which TAMA drum sets are a cut above the rest
  • Find the perfect TAMA drums, regardless of your skill level and experience
  • Discover the secrets of TAMA manufacturing and what makes their drums superior
  • Also, check out our post on the best drumsticks for beginners

Tama has been manufacturing premium drum kits and helping musicians perform their best for nearly half a decade.

The brand specializes in crafting sets for heavier music and is endorsed by some of the biggest names in rock and metal, including but not limited to the infamous Lars Ulrich from Metallica, Dave Grohl from Nirvana & Foo Fighters, and Mike Portnoy from half of the bands most metal connoisseurs love.

TAMA engineers pay great attention to detail, ensuring that each drum kit is different and capable of catering to the needs of drummers with different levels of experience, sonic perception, and playing styles.

In this article, I’ll take you through the best drum kits TAMA ever made, so without further ado, let’s dive in.

What Are The Best TAMA Drum Kits?

The best TAMA Drum kit is the Club-Jam Flyer LJK44S-CPM. It’s more affordable than most TAMA drums, it’s more versatile than your average basic drumming kit, and its sound is superior to similarly-priced alternatives.

If you’re looking for a professional kit, something a bit more simplistic, or an electronic TAMA, let me show you some of my top picks:

  1. TAMA Drum Kit LJK44S-CPM (Our Pick)
  2. TAMA Superstar Classic Custom (Best Premium)
  3. TAMA Club Jam Mini (Best Budget)
  4. Tama Imperialstar (Best For Professionals)
  5. TAMA Electronic Drum Set TTK4S (Best Electronic)

1. TAMA Drum Kit LJK44S-CPM (Our Pick)

Our Pick

In a compact size, TAMA's LJK44S-CPM kit offers the ultimate drum kit experience. As well as delivering an authentic sound, the compactness and configuration of the kit make it perfect for use on the road or in small venues.

Why We Love It:
  • Gorgeous finish
  • Made of robust real wood materials
  • Super-compact drum kit
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For several reasons, TAMA’s LJK44S-CPM is a staple in the Club-JAM Flyer series and is among the best TAMA drum kits. It’s the brand’s “Jack of all trades,” as it’s virtually unbeatable regarding versatility.

Whether you’re a beginner searching for a highly playable drum set, an experienced musician interested in good sound, or a touring drummer looking for a road-worthy kit, LJK44S-CPM’s got it all covered.

Key Features:

  • 14×10-inch bass drum
  • 8×6-inch hanging tom
  • 10×9-inch floor tom
  • 10×5-inch snare drum
  • MTH50 tom holder
  • 4-piece shell kit
  • Low-profile bass drum pedal
  • 10-inch snare stand
  • Hi-hat stand

The 14×10-inch bass drum is the centerpiece of this TAMA set; even though it’s quite small, it packs quite a punch.

Club-Jam LJK44S-CPM features a 10×5-inch snare best suited for jazz, blues, and poppy music styles. It’s responsive, packs a decently broad hitting surface for a small kit, and stays tuned for extended periods.

This drum set is equipped with two toms. A 9×10-inch floor tom and a 6×8-inch hanging tom.

 The kit also packs a low-profile bass drum pedal, a hi-hat stand, a snare stand compatible with 10-inch snares, and a drum throne.

 In terms of other features, it rocks hoops made of sturdy natural wood material, a highly adjustable drum lifter, and a convenient cymbal holding bracket.

Another reason why TAMA’s LJK44S-CPM is my main pick is that, aside from versatility, its compact size and weight make it perfect for drummers that don’t rehearse in one place.

It’s considerably lighter than the other four drums on the list, and it can easily fit in the trunk of any mini-car.

Sound-wise, you’d be surprised how sonically reach LJK44S-CPM is when compared to similarly-sized drum sets. You can use its toms for more than accentuating your kicks, while the snare is detailed and punchy.

Regarding the finish, you can choose between two color variations: AQB (Aqua Blue) and CPM (Candy Apple Mist).


  • Ideal for beginners and drummers searching for a dependable backup set
  • Gorgeous finish
  • Made of robust real wood materials
  • Super-compact drum kit


  • Sounds a bit hollow in comparison to full-size TAMA sets
  • Moderately pricey

2. TAMA Superstar Classic Custom 7-Piece Shell Pack (Best Premium)

Best Premium
TAMA Superstar Classic Custom Shell Pack

TAMA's Superstar series has always been known for its groundbreaking design, superior build quality, sterling tone, and clear projection, but now it has introduced its most sonically aggressive persona yet.

Why We Love It:
  • Premium maple construction
  • Reinforced shells for extra durability
  • Low-mass multi-flange drum lugs
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The Superstar series is one of the most heavily acclaimed TAMA product lines, boasting all-maple construction with thoroughly reinforced bass drum, snare, and tom-toms.

It’s a kit fit for a professional that excels in virtually all fields of performance, although it costs quite a bit. Seasoned veterans typically use the entire kit for arena gigs and its basic variant for high-profile club concerts.

Key Features:

  • 22×18-inch bass drum
  • 14×12 & 16×14 floor toms
  • 8×7, 10×8, and 12×9-inch hanging toms
  • MTH600 double tom holder
  • MC69 tom attachment
  • CKB18RL bass drum lifter
  • Low-profile bass pedal

What makes Superstar one of the best TAMA drum sets of all time is its all-maple build. I love this material because of its distinctly warm, balanced timbre, and the entire Superstar is crafted from it.

This drum set is available in more than a dozen finishes; aside from being aesthetically different, they also impact the performance, as their individual components are built differently.

 If you’re searching for the sturdiest road-worthy TAMA drums on the market, I recommend going with any of the available lacquer finishes, as they rock 8-ply bass and 6-ply tom & snare reinforcement (as opposed to 4 and 6-ply with “exotic” finishes).

Another key feature of TAMA’s Superstar drum set is the Power Craft 2 heads. Not only do they sound larger than life, but they also sport inbuilt ring mufflers.

 Since Superstar is one of the largest kits in TAMA’s catalog, the brand used lighter and smaller lugs. Superstar drums offer excellent resonance, albeit at the cost of hitting area.

 TAMA also used the exquisite Star-Mount system to simplify mounting individual parts. Featuring sliding eye bolts, not only are the parts easier to adjust, but they also won’t touch if you set them properly.


  • Premium maple construction
  • Reinforced shells for extra durability
  • Low-mass multi-flange drum lugs
  • Easy setup due to the star mount system


  • Weighs a ton and occupies a lot of space

3. TAMA Club Jam Mini (Best Budget)

Best Budget
TAMA Club Jam Mini

The simple and sweet TAMA Club-JAM Mini kit is just a kick and snare. Its clear yet deep sound comes from its Mersawa / Poplar hybrid shell, and its compact size and configuration make it ideal for small venues or street performances.

Why We Love It:
  • Affordable
  • Compact and lightweight
  • Made of high-quality poplar
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Another great set of drums from TAMA’s Club Jam series, the Mini Drum Kit, wasn’t named after its compactness alone. It’s a minimalistic drum set designed to help beginners learn the ropes while getting accustomed to quality.

Excellent sound quality, sturdiness, and playability would be the words that describe Club Jam Mini the best. 

Key Features:

  • 7×18-inch bass drum
  • 5×12-inch snare drum
  • Standard hi-hat with stand
  • TAMA drum pedal
  • Drum throne

There aren’t many TAMA drum kits in the budget price range. Club Jam Mini is an exception here — a “bare bones” setup that is remarkably well-made, rocking a durable poplar shell construction, gorgeous aesthetics, and a deep, rich tone.

In terms of finishes, you will get to choose between AQB (Aqua Blue), CCM (Charcoal Mist), and GXS (Galaxy Silver). Unlike the Superstar kit, all Club Jam Mini sets (and finishes) are made of the same materials.

This drum kit isn’t just perfect for beginners. It’s great for veterans that already own a formidable arsenal of cymbals, but even pros can use it as a base if they need a warm-sounding kick.

The Club Jam Mini kit is also an excellent choice for touring musicians. It’s compact, light, and, most importantly, built to withstand any bumps along the way.


  • Quite affordable for a TAMA drum set
  • Compact and lightweight
  • Made of high-quality poplar
  • Deep and warm sound


  • Equipped with just a kick and a snare

4. TAMA Imperialstar 5-Piece Kit (Best for Professionals)

Best For Professionals
TAMA Imperialstar

The TAMA Imperialstar drum kits provide everything a drummer needs at an affordable price. Imperialstar may appeal to beginner drummers, but more experienced intermediate players will enjoy playing great-sounding Imperialstar kits in every music genre, from jazz and R&B to rock.

Why We Love It:
  • Outstanding resonance and responsiveness
  • Unique, distinctly warm sound
  • Shells made of 6-ply poplar material
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The Imperialstar set is as nearly as old as TAMA itself. Its tone is nearly impossible to mimic because it features super-strong 6-ply shells made of Philippine mahogany and coated with Zola fabric.

The main benefit of Imperialstar is its unmatched sound quality and top-tier sturdiness. It’s a drum kit fit for elite pros, regardless of whether you plan to tour, practice, or use it in a recording studio.

Key Features:

  • 22×16 bass drum
  • 12×8 and 10×7 tom toms
  • 14×5 snare
  • 16×15 floor tom
  • MTH50 dual tom holders
  • Meinl HCS 14-inch Hi-Hat cymbal
  • Meinl HCS 16-inch China cymbal
  • Meinl HCS 20-inch Ride cymbal

Subjectively, Imperialstar is the best TAMA drum set that a professional could want. Its robustness is leagues above contemporary mid and high-tier drum sets, and its tone is hard to describe because of its uniqueness.

Made of exotic Philippine mahogany and coated with Zola fabric, this drum kit is everything, but tame – superior resonance, depth, and punch are the least you should expect from it.

When it comes to TAMA drum kits, not many sets are outfitted with cymbals, let alone Meinl ones. All Imperialstar kits come supplied with a set of three top-of-the-line Mein HCSs, including a hi-hat, a ride, and a china cymbal.

I love Imperialstar’s precision edges, which are to “blame” for the kit’s otherworldly responsiveness and resonance.

The edges are cut with surgical precision and occupy a smaller hitting surface; these few millimeters can make a world of a difference for professionals who want to let the shells blast and ring when needed.

The only thing I didn’t like about TAMA’s Imperialstar is that it is so hard to find these days. The series has been discontinued for a while and knowing how well-made this kit is, most professionals have already bought theirs.


  • Unique, distinctly warm sound
  • Shells made of 6-ply poplar material
  • Available in seven beautiful color finishes
  • Meinl HCS China, Ride, and Hi-Hat cymbals
  • Outstanding resonance and responsiveness


  • Very hard to find on major online marketplaces

5. TAMA Drum Set TTK4S (Best Electronic)

Best Electronic

This electronic practice kit combines quiet acoustic volume, realistic acoustic touch, and sensitive dynamic expression, resulting in a highly satisfying acoustic drum feel.

Why We Love It:
  • Outstanding durability
  • Feel similar to playing acoustic drums
  • Aesthetically mimics a real drum set
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TAMA is catering to all drummers’ needs, including electronic drum kit players. The TTK4S or the 4-piece True Touch Training Kit, is a remarkably responsive and versatile electronic drum kit that boasts simplicity and strong features.

Key Features:

  • Electronic kick bass pedal
  • 8-inch electronic tom pad with a mounting clamp
  • 9-inch floor electronic tom pad with a clamp
  • Electronic hi-hat and hi-hat stand

The True Touch TTK4S is easily one of the best TAMA electronic drums out there, packing a variety of exceptional features and empowering players with unparalleled accuracy. 

One of its strongest features is the Accuracy Articulation Dynamics technology, which is built into the snare pad.

The sonic source is tucked away into the snare and then covered with several layers of robust materials; this ensures that it can endure heavier hits without compromising response times.

 Furthermore, to ensure players of acoustic drum kits can have a similar experience playing on TTK4S, TAMA used a 2-ply mesh layer; the stick bounces back when it hits the snare in a fashion similar to hitting a real snare.

Furthermore, TTK4S was meant to aesthetically recreate the “feel” of an acoustic drum set. The toms, snare, and hoops are positioned at a height most drummers will be familiar with, enabling you to use your natural drumming movements while practicing or playing.

Tom toms of True Touch TTK4S feature Acousti-tone technology; layered with thick, sturdy rubber, toms are both as durable and as responsive as any classic (acoustic) tom.


  • Advanced technologies promote superior responsiveness
  • Outstanding durability
  • Feel similar to playing acoustic drums
  • Specifically designed to aesthetically mimic a real drum set


  • Only two cymbals


Which Famous Drummers Use TAMA?

Numerous high-profile drummers use TAMA kits, predominantly rock and metal players.

Some of the most famous drummers that endorse the brand include Stewart Copeland of The Police, Dave Mackintosh of DragonForce, the late Neil Peart of Rush, Iron Maiden’s Clive Burr, Brann Dailor of Mastodon, and Scott Travis of Judas Priest.

What TAMA Drum Kit Does Dave Grohl Use?

Dave Grohl has used three TAMA drum kits during his career in Nirvana, including the TAMA Granstar in the early 90s, the Granstar II during the Nevermind tour, and Artstar II while promoting In Utero.

Related: What Guitar Does Dave Grohl Play (All 11 Models)

Are TAMA Drums Still Made In Japan?

TAMA moved its operations to China in 2002 to lower high production and shipping costs, although they are still using several factories in Japan. The Star series drum kits are still being made there.

Before you go, check out our guide to the 7 Best Online Drum Lessons/Courses (For All Skill Levels)!