There’s nothing quite like the deep, resonant rumble of a bass drum. It’s the heartbeat of the music, the foundation that everything else is built upon. And to get the best possible sound from your bass drum, you need the best bass drum mallets or bass drum sticks.
Finding the best bass drum mallets could be a grueling task for percussionists or marching band bass drummers. There are a lot of factors to consider and there are a lot of bass drum sticks on the market, making it hard to sort the best from the worst.
Lucky for you, in this article, I’ll list 8 of the best bass drum mallets for both professionals and beginners alike. In addition, I’ve also crafted a short buyer’s guide, helping you find the right bass drum mallets for your low-end needs.
Bass Drum Mallets & Sticks Buyer’s Guide
What is a Bass Drum Mallet?
Bass drum mallets are an essential part of any marching bass drummer’s arsenal. It consists of a wooden shaft with a padded head and is played by striking the head against the drumhead. The result is a deep, bass-heavy sound that can be used to add power and depth to a musical performance.
When shopping for a bass drum mallet, it’s important to find one that meets your specific needs. There are a few things to keep in mind when shopping for the best bass drum mallets.
Stick Tip Type
Typically, a bass drummer uses a mallet for deep passages and small heads for articulate passages. Within a marching band, a bass drummer would often utilize a mallet with a large head for loud and deep bass response. Meanwhile, an orchestra percussionist would interchange between a regular stick for articulate passages and a mallet for deep bass tones.
In a nutshell, buyers should look into the tip type of the bass drum stick they are buying. Thus, ensuring that the stick they are buying will suit their needs and the genre they are playing.
Identifying the beater and tip material of a bass drum stick can help alter the tone drummers produce. For example, a fluffy drum beater will provide a smooth and deep bass tone. Meanwhile, a felt beater provides users with a better rebound and definition in comparison with a fluffy beater. On the other hand, a rubber beater provides a sharper attack than felt beaters. In conclusion, the harder the beater material is, the faster and harsher its attack would be.
Usually, bass drum mallets and sticks feature durable wooden material. However, aside from a stick’s durability, buyers should also look at its construction such as its flare. Therefore, I advise drummers to look for sticks with tapers or any comfortable handle features for a better playing experience.
8 of the Best Drum Mallets Sticks for Bass Drums
Promark PSMB2 Performer Series Bass Drum Mallet
Type: Felt Head Bass Drum Sticks
Drummers all around the world cannot deny the quality Promark provides. With the Promark PSMB2 Performer Series Bass Drum Mallet, drummers can now produce deep thumps with relative ease.
Firstly, the Promark PSMB2 features select-grade American Hickory handles, providing durable performance in every hit. In addition, the PSMB2 features a comfortable flare grip paired with an upward taper, providing unparalleled projection and balance.
Secondly, the stick features a special extra-dense felt head measuring 1 ½”. Thus, providing drummers with a fast attack and better rebound. Lastly, the Promark PSMB2 provides users with excellent features all designed and manufactured in the USA.
- Select Grade American Hickory handles
- 1 ½” head size
- Comfort Flare grip
- Upward head taper
- Puffy felt head
- Features a combination of taper and grip flare that helps the stick feel good when playing.
- Suitable for 20” up to 22” bass drums.
- Ideal for all skill levels.
- Trusted by countless professionals worldwide such as Ringo Starr and Phil Collins.
- Not suitable for mesh drum pads.
Vic Firth Corpsmaster® MB1H Bass Drum Mallet
Brand: Vic Firth
Type: Felt Head Bass Drum Sticks
Specifically made for marching bands, the Vic Firth Corpsmaster features super hard felt heads perfect for standard 18”-22” bass drums. In addition, the Corpsmaster MB1H features a hard-felt beater, providing a faster attack than soft-felt beaters.
Furthermore, the Vic Firth Corpsmaster MB1H incorporates tapered hickory shafts. As a result, the MB1H helps players transfer the stick’s weight towards the hand, providing better stick control.
Lastly, Vic Firth designed the Corpsmaster MB1H with a spherical head, providing users with a consistent striking surface. Thus, providing a consistent bass sound in every angle.
- Hickory handle material
- Tapered shafts
- Hard felt beater material
- 14 ¼” length
- Spherical beater construction
- Excellent for 18” up to 22” bass drums.
- Ideal for bass players in a marching band.
- Provides a consistent bass drum sound thanks to its spherical beater construction.
- Features extremely durable materials that can handle rimshots.
- The product’s felt material warps when exposed to moisture.
Innovative Percussion Christopher Lamb Series Model #3
Brand: Innovative Percussion
Type: Concert Bass Drum Mallets/Sticks
Ideal for orchestra bass percussionists, the Innovative Percussion Christopher Lamb Series provides clear and detailed articulation for soft passages. Thanks to its slimmer diameter of 0.625”, the Christopher Lamb Series Model is extremely lightweight and easy to handle. Paired with a length of 16” and a quick taper, the stick removes strain from its user’s hand while playing.
Moreover, Innovative Percussion designed the product with a quick taper allowing for better control. Furthermore, the Christopher Lamb Series Model #3 incorporates a small round bead, creating subtle drum tones that highlight small articulations.
Lastly, the Innovative Percussion Christopher Lamb Series Model #3 features a laminated beech construction, providing incredible durability during performances.
- Heavy laminated beech material
- Quick handle taper
- Small round bead
- 0.625” diameter
- 16” length
- Excellent choice for articulate and soft passages.
- Ideal for orchestra percussionists.
- Incorporates the specifications of Grammy Award-winning percussionist Christopher Lamb.
- The stick’s quick taper and shorter scale transfer the weight to the percussionist’s hand.
- The stick’s scale is shorter in comparison with standard concert drumsticks.
Promark M322L Large Felt Bass Drum Mallet
Type: Large Felt Bass Drum Mallets/Sticks
The Promark M322L is perfect for producing lower bass drum tones. Firstly, the product features a head size of 2 ½” felt, providing superb low-end tones. In addition, the product measures 14 1/8”, making it easy to handle within bass drumming standards.
Secondly, the M322L utilizes lightweight black satin aluminum shafts for a durable but lightweight feel. Moreover, the product features non-slip grips for better stick control.
Lastly, the M322L incorporates epoxied solid felt heads for a better hitting feel and tone. Therefore, if you are looking for an excellent pair of traditional-style mallets, you can’t go wrong with the M322L!
- 2 ½” head size
- 14 1/8” length
- Traditional style marching mallet
- Black satin aluminum shafts with non-slip grips
- Solid felt head
- More durable than wooden mallets.
- The product allows drummers to produce loud beats with minimal effort.
- The aluminum construction gives it a lightweight but durable performance.
- Ideal for marching band bass drummers.
- Despite the aluminum mallet’s resistance against cracking, it’s still vulnerable to bending.
Ludwig L310 Payson General Bass Drum Mallet
Type: Hard Felt Bass Drum Mallets/Sticks
Designed by Chicago Symphony Orchestra’s percussionist Al Payson, the L310 provides the best performance under any stage. Firstly, the L310 features a hard-felt beater wrapped with a soft white pile that provides a fast attack and a lower thump.
Secondly, the utilization of a hard maple handle allows the mallet to withstand abuse even from the hardest-hitting percussionists. In addition, the hard maple handle provides users with a comfortable feel, allowing them to play for hours on end.
Thirdly, Ludwig designed the L310 with a total weight of 0.5, making it within the ideal striking weight. Lastly, Ludwig constructed the L310 to avoid detuning or damaging drum heads while playing.
- 0.5 lbs stick weight
- Soft white beater exterior
- Hard felt beater core
- Hard maple handle
- Designed and manufactured in the USA
- Perfect for both beginners and professional bass drummers.
- Ludwig designed the L310 to prevent bass drum head deterioration and detuning.
- Designed by Al Payson— a world-renowned percussionist— for his personal use.
- Weights at 0.5 lbs which is the optimum striking weight.
- The most expensive product within our bass drum sticks list.
Buytra 4 Pack Bass Drum Mallets Sticks
Type: Bass Drum Mallets/Sticks Bundle
Perfect for percussionists within a budget, the Buytra Bundle provides buyers with 4 drum mallets at an affordable price point! Featuring a solid EVA foam mallet, the Buytra Drum Mallets are lightweight and durable. In addition, this EVA foam construction produces a fuller sound despite its lightweight feel.
Furthermore, the mallets feature solid oak handles, providing a sturdy and robust feel when playing. Plus, Buytra polished the mallets’ handles to avoid accidental blisters; thus, providing a comfortable hand feel when held.
Lastly, the Buytra sticks feature an overall length of 12.99” and a beater head size of 2.17” x 1.97”.
- Solid EVA foam beater
- 2.17” x 1.97” beater head size
- 12.99” overall length
- Solid oak handles
- 4-piece mallet bundle
- Offered within a budget-friendly price point.
- Excellent for beginners.
- Features a unique EVA foam beater; thus, providing a lightweight but solid feel.
- The solid oak handles of the mallets are surprisingly comfortable and gentle on the hand.
- Lacks in terms of durability in comparison with leading brands such as Ludwig and Vic Firth.
Jiayouy Bass Drum Mallet
Type: Budget Bass Drum Mallets/Sticks
The Jiayouy bass drum mallet provides users with a low thud within an affordable price point. Firstly, Jiayouy designed their bass drum mallet with thick wool felt, producing rich bass notes within an adequate level.
Secondly, the Jiayouy bass drum mallet features a shaft made of durable material. In addition, the mallet’s shaft incorporates anti-corrosion and anti-deform properties, making it extremely durable.
Thirdly, the bass drum mallet measures approximately 14.17”, which is an average size. Finally, the felt beater’s diameter measures 2.3” and its length at 2”.
- Thick wool felt beater
- Maple shaft
- Anti-corrosion and anti-deform properties
- 14.17” in length
- 2.3” x 2” beater size
- Ideal for all skill levels.
- Comparatively cheaper than other drum mallets within this list.
- Features a combination of durable materials.
- The beater material combination provides a fast attack but clear low drum tones.
- The Jiayouy mallet is decent; however, it lacks in comparison with the Ludwig L310.
Canomo Pack of 2 Bass Drum Mallet
Type: Bass Drum Mallets/Sticks Bundle
The Canomo Bass Drum Mallet features a stainless steel body, providing users with durable performance. In addition, the Canomo drum mallets feature anti-corrosion and anti-deform properties, allowing the product to withstand extreme levels of beating.
Moreover, the Canomo bass drum mallet utilizes a rubber cover grip. Thus, providing users with a better shaft grip and feel. Furthermore, Canomo incorporates a rope on the shaft’s end, securing the mallet around the user’s arm.
Therefore, if you are looking for affordable bass drum sticks, you can’t go wrong with the Canomo Bass Drum Mallets.
- Thick wool felt beater
- Stainless steel shaft
- Anti-corrosion and anti-deform features
- Shaft rope
- Rubber shaft grip
- Utilizes a stainless steel shaft which is lightweight and durable.
- Features various security specifications such as a shaft rope and rubber shaft grip.
- Provides users with 2 drum mallets within a budget-friendly price point.
- Excellent weight and balance, allowing users to easily control their swing’s intensity.
- The stainless steel shaft is hollow, which may cause the shaft to bend over time.
FAQs about Bass Drum Mallets & Sticks
What are bass drum sticks called?
Percussionists around the world have different names for bass drum sticks. Some percussionists call them beaters. However, drummers usually associate the term beater with pedal-operated bass drum beaters. On the other hand, some percussionists call them a mallet— which is a hand-operated beater.
What do players use instead of sticks to play the bass drum?
Percussionists within a marching band or an orchestra typically use a thick hand-held beater for low-end passages. Furthermore, orchestra percussionists typically incorporate thinner beaters for articulate and soft passages. Nevertheless, all the beaters utilized both marching band and orchestra percussionists are bass drum sticks.
What are the different types of drum sticks?
Within the drumming community, there are different types of drum sticks utilized when playing. Firstly, a regular drumstick is what we often see on acoustic and electric drumsets. Secondly, drummers and percussionists utilize brushes for soft playing. Thirdly, a rod is a type of bundled stick that plays quietly than a stick but louder than a brush. Lastly, percussionists utilize bass drum sticks or drum mallets when playing the bass drum in a marching band or orchestra.
What is the thing that hits the bass drum?
A bass drum pedal is a thing that hits the bass drum; however, it’s not limited to bass drum pedals alone. Bass drum pedals come in different forms such as a double bass pedal. When it becomes operated by hand, it then becomes bass drum sticks.
What is the thing you hit a drum with called?
A batter head hits the bass drum head; thus, producing various types of thumps depending on its head material. A hard batter head will produce a quick attack and a louder sound. On the other hand, a softer batter head will produce a smoother and deeper thump.