A Tambourine Drum attachment provides drumkits with an enhanced percussive sound for a hi hat. When mounted on a cymbal, a tambourine drum cymbal attachment adds texture and character to every hit.
10 Tambourine Drum Reviewed in this Guide
On the other hand, there is also a small-frame drum called a tambourine drum. This type of tambourine utilizes a drumhead on top of a circular frame. Its sides feature metal zills, creating a percussive rattling sound.
Tambourines have seen their fair share of utilization within European, African American, and even classical music. In addition, tambourines also share similar characteristics with indigenous instruments such as the Buben and Arabic Riq.
In a nutshell, tambourines are well-cemented within various musical cultures and genres. They also share multiple constructions for different musical purposes. Therefore, if you’re looking for either a tambourine attachment or just a standalone instrument, this guide has you covered.
5 of the Best Tambourine Drum for Drumkits
Meinl Cymbals HTHH1BK Mountable Hihat Tambourine Drum with Steel Jingles
The Meinl HTHH1BK Tambourine is the perfect addition to Meinl Hi hats. This tambourine attachment comes with an easy mounting, allowing users to attach this to any hi-hat stand.
Furthermore, this tambourine attachment features a 5” diameter frame crafted from synthetic materials. Thanks to its specification, the Meinl HTHH1BK Tambourine boasts a lightweight construction without compromising its durability against stick hits.
Moreover, the product features steel jingles on its side, providing hi-hats with a bright accent. That’s why if you’re looking for a budget-friendly, lightweight, and robust tambourine attachment, this is the right product for you!
- Synthetic frame material
- 5” diameter
- Eight steel jingles
- Hi-hat stand compatibility
- Access wing nut mounting
The Meinl HTHH1BK’s utilization of an access wing nut mounting makes it easy to attach this product on hi-hat stands. In addition, this tambourine drum attachment allows users to mute them when not needed, even while mounted.
This tambourine works as intended; however, I’m not well-convinced in its steel jingle sound.
DRUM SET Half Moon TAMBOURINE with Mounting Eye Bolt
This Half Moon tambourine drum attachment features a polymer material that is light and strong against stick hits. In addition, this material allows this tambourine to possess a seamless hitting surface while reducing overall stick noise.
The DD Half Moon Tambourine utilizes a locking bracket, making the product suitable with most stands and rods. Moreover, this product also comes with eight double rows of jingles, adding character and shimmer to every hi-hat hit.
Considering all these features, I recommend this for drummers who want a simplistic and no-compromise tambourine for every performance.
- Polymer Edge
- Locking tambourine bracket
- Eight double-row steel jingles
- Free mounting hardware
- Black colorway
What’s unique with this tambourine is that it utilizes a polymer edge material, providing users with a seamless hitting surface. Furthermore, this feature also eliminates stick sound in the process, allowing the tambourine to sing without that harsh stick click.
Although this product works great in terms of functionality, however, it lacks in terms of tone and shimmer. Nevertheless, what you’re paying for this cymbal won’t be its sound but its simplicity and portability.
DST10 Rhythm Tech Tambourine Drum, Black
The DST10 Tambourine Attachment by Rhythm Tech combines ease of use, simplicity, and portability in one product. Firstly, the DST10 implements a polymer playing edge similar to the DD Half Moon Tambourine. As a result, this product provides users with an excellent playing feel and cleaner tone by eliminating stick noise.
Secondly, the product’s quick-release wing screw allows for easier hi-hat stand mounting. The product’s quick-release wing screw uses metal materials, ensuring tambourine stability when mounted.
Lastly, Rhythm Tech focused on this product’s sound. The DST10 delivers a colorful tone that puts other products to shame by utilizing eight steel jingles around the tambourine.
- Polymer playing edge
- Quick-release wing screw
- Eight double-row nickel jingles
- Black colorway
The DST10 easily out-sings other tambourines within its price point. In addition, this product is compatible with DSM2 Universal or DSM Quad mounts. The DST10 also features an easy on and off mounting system that is highly stable.
This product is not for you if you want a deeper-sounding tambourine attachment.
Latin Percussion Jam Tambourine Drum
This product is for you if you’re looking for a portable tambourine drum for live performances! Featuring six pairs of nickel-plated jingles, this tambourine attachment delivers a bright sound that easily cuts through dense mixes.
Furthermore, the Latin Percussion Jam features a Jenigor-based construction, providing the tambourine with a lightweight and durable plastic body. The Latin Percussion Jam also utilizes a rubber hitting surface, enhancing stick rebound for a comfortable playing experience.
Finally, Latin Percussion designed this tambourine drum to suit 3/8” stand rods. Latin Percussion also includes a free LP Eyebolt Mounting bracket to ensure the product’s compatibility with most stands.
- 3/8” rod compatibility
- Patented Jenigor-based construction
- Six pairs of nickel-plated jingles
- Rubber hitting surface
- Free LP Mounting Bracket
The product’s utilization of the Jenigor construction provides it with a robust but lightweight feel. Therefore, making the product easy to bring to gigs. The LP Jam also comes with a rubber surface which minimizes stick noise while improving the product’s reboundability.
The product works and sounds excellent, but it requires hitting precision to get the best sound out of it.
Latin Percussion LP160NY-K Tambourine Drum Attachment and Cowbell with Mount Kit
The Latin Percussion LP160NY-K doesn’t only come with a tambourine attachment but also a cowbell for drum set! The LP160NY-K features the LP Cyclops tambourine, which utilizes a construction for the best playing experience possible. Conversely, the LP160NY-K combines this tambourine with the LP City Cowbell based on the LP Black Beauty.
The LP Cyclops tambourine features a durable frame with rounded edges for a better playing feel. In addition, the Cyclops incorporates LP’s pinning system, allowing the tambourine’s jingles to stay in place for a long time. LP also includes its signature LP eye-bolt mounts which fit any 3/8” rod.
Furthermore, the LP City Cowbell features a 5” size which delivers a high-pitched bright sound. The LP City Cowbell also utilizes a slightly rounded surface. Consequently, making it easier for users to get the best sound regardless of where they hit the cowbell.
- LP Cyclops tambourine
- Latin Percussion City Cowbell
- LP eye-bolt mount
- Adjustable mounting arm
- Compact design
The LP Cyclops and City Cowbell combination have a free compatible mounting arm. This mounting arm saves space and makes the installation of both products easier. Furthermore, both products utilize the same forged eye-bolt mounts, which are compatible with the included arm.
The only gripe I have with the LP160NY-K Tambourine Drum is that it doesn’t feature a compact construction. Thus, transporting this product will require more baggage space, making it cumbersome in the long run.
5 Incredible StandaloneTambourine Drum for Handheld Playing
EastRock Tambourine Metal Jingles Handheld Percussion Half Moon Tambourine
The EastRock Tambourine utilizes a durable ABS material, focusing on lightweight and playing convenience. In addition, EastRock combines a semi-circular arc construction paired with a finger mold, making the tambourine extremely ergonomic.
Moreover, this tambourine features non-slip and wear-resistant materials, improving the product’s overall usability and durability. Therefore, if you’re looking for a portable, ergonomic, and robust tambourine, you can never go wrong with this product!
- ABS tambourine material
- Non-slip molded handle
- Semi-circular arc construction
- Eight double-row jingles
- Waterproof and drop-proof
The EastRock Tambourine Drum comes with free castanets, samba whistles, and small rattles for a budget-friendly price. This tambourine is also highly durable, thanks to its wear-resistant and stainless steel materials.
My only gripe with this product is that it lacks projection and tonal quality due to its thin jingles.
RhythmTech RT1010 Handheld Tambourine Drum
The RT1010 Handheld Tambourine utilizes an elliptical shape, improving the product’s usability and ergonomics. Furthermore, the RT1010 also incorporates a molded comfort grip, providing users with a comfortable playing experience.
On the other hand, this Rhythm Tech handheld tambourine features double rows of nickel jingles. Consequently, delivering a bright sound that cuts easily cuts through mixes.
What’s surprising is that Rhythm Tech offers all these features within a budget-friendly price point. Therefore, making this tambourine drum perfect for drummers who wants the best tambourine performance without spending a fortune.
- Elliptical tambourine construction
- Molded comfort grip
- Eight double-row nickel jingles
- Simplistic design and functionality
- Bright sound
The RT1010 features a handle that is highly comfortable to use. Moreover, this product’s usage of nickel jingles helps it cut through various instruments thanks to its bright cutting sound. That’s why I would recommend this product for recordings and live performances.
This product plays and sounds well in my experience. One problem I’ve seen is that this tambourine’s handle may be too big for people with smaller hands. Aside from that, everything on this tambourine is just excellent for its price.
Remo TA-5210-70 Fiberskyn Handheld Tambourine Drum
The Remo TA-5210-70 Fiberskyn Tambourine is a must-have for percussionists who love traditional tambourines. Firstly, this tambourine drum utilizes Remo’s Acousticon shell material, providing it with better stability and durability against hits.
Secondly, the product Fiberskyn’s poly-spun material helps this handheld tambourine eliminate unwanted overtones. Through the Fiberskyn, the TA-5210-70 delivers authentic ethnic sounds unique to the instrument. Remo’s Fiberskyn also enhances the tambourine’s projection, allowing this instrument to be audible within any mix.
Remo designed the TA-5210-70 tambourine with eight double-row sets of jingles. It also comes with a 10” body model, making it easier to play for all skill levels. Whether you’re a beginner, professional, or percussion enthusiast, this tambourine is suitable for you!
- Remo Fiberskyn Tambourine drum head
- 10” size
- Eight double-row jingles
- Remo Acousticon Shell
- Lightweight construction
The TA-5210-70 combines the Fiberskyn drumhead and two rows of 8 steel jingles, providing the tambourine with incredible projection. In addition, the product boasts superb durability thanks to its utilization of the Acousticon Shell.
Compared with headless tambourines, this product’s utilization of a drumhead makes it more susceptible to breakage.
Meinl Percussion Synthetic Handheld Tambourine Drum
The Meinl Percussion Handheld Tambourine features a plethora of specifications that focus on durability, tonal projection, playability, and comfort! Through its dual-alloy jingles, this synthetic tambourine drum features the best of both nickel and brass-plated jingles to the table. The tambourine’s jingle also makes it sensitive to a user’s dynamics when playing. Thus, allowing them to mix up their playing to help them sit virtually anywhere they want within a mix.
Furthermore, this Meinl Synthetic Tambourine possesses a sustain that hits the sweet spot. Meinl also utilized an all-weather synthetic frame on this tambourine. As a result, this allows the tambourine to withstand almost all playing settings and conditions. This also gives the product better durability against all external elements.
Finally, Meinl makes this synthetic handheld tambourine drum extremely playable thanks to its utilization of 5” long-padded grips. This product is ideal for percussionists with consistent hand-cramping problems when playing for extended hours.
- Ridged weatherproof synthetic frame
- 10” tambourine drum size
- 14 brass and nickel-plated jingles
- 5” padded grip
- 15.7 ounces
Within this list, this is the only tambourine drum that offers both nickel and brass-plated jingles. Consequently, this results in the perfect balance between projection and sustain. This synthetic handheld tambourine also features a padded grip that enhances its playability and ergonomics.
This Meinl Percussion Synthetic Tambourine is almost perfect; however, the product’s jampacked specification makes it heavier than most synthetic tambourines.
Meinl Percussion TAH2AB Traditional 10-Inch Wood Tambourine
The Meinl TAH2AB is the ultimate traditional handheld tambourine drum on this guide. Through a natural goat skin drumhead, the TAH2AB tambourine delivers a warm tone suitable for finger rolls and other techniques.
Moreover, Meinl utilized a unique sandwich jingle positioning on the TAH2AB tambourine, maximizing its 16 pairs of nickel-plated steel jingles. Thus, allowing the tambourine to have a brighter tone and cutting projection that will stand out within a mix.
Lastly, the Meinl TAH2AB handheld tambourine features a 10” hardwood frame, an ergonomic grip, and strong-mounting pins. This provides this Meinl Traditional Tambourine with exceptional durability and comfort when used.
- Double-row nickel-plated steel jingles
- Pre-tuned goat skin drumhead
- Sandwich jingle positioning
- 10” hardwood frame
- Metal jingle mounting pins
Meinl specifically designed the TAH2AB to feature the fascets of a traditional handheld wood tambourine drum. In addition, its overall specifications deliver a bright, resonant, and shimmering tone that you cannot find on other tambourines.
Similar to the Meinl Synthetic Tambourine, this product is too heavy for prolonged use. Therefore, I wouldn’t recommend this for gigging and touring percussionists.
Things to Consider Before Buying a Tambourine Drum— A Buyer’s Guide
Today, our market offers a plethora of various tambourine drums with varying constructions, materials, and more. Every material in a tambourine changes its sound, playing feel, and performance.
In this light, buyers should know what to look for before buying a tambourine drum. Therefore, I crafted this buyer’s guide to help you find the best tambourine drum features according to your needs.
Similar to cymbal sets, the material of jingles affects its overall tone. However, unlike cymbals which revolve between brass and bronze materials, tambourine jingles typically utilize brass, silver, and nickel materials. Here are the various jingle materials and their respective tones:
- Brass– produces a fuller and warmer sound than nickel jingles.
- Bronze– possesses a rich, dark, and clear sound.
- Copper– has a rich, clear, and dry sound that is higher-pitched than bronze.
- Nickel- delivers a bright and cutting tone perfect for dense mixes.
- Silver- offers a crisp, wet sound that cuts through a mix.
There is no right or wrong decision regarding jingle material. This decision boils down to buyer preference, as every jingle material will produce a different sound. That’s why buyers should know what material to pick depending on the tone they are chasing.
Tambourine Shell Construction
Typical shell diameters span from 6” up to 10”. In addition, there are also hardwood and synthetic shell materials. Both shell size and the material of tambourine drums don’t affect their tone significantly. However, this eventually affects a tambourine’s weight and overall playability.
Ideally, buyers should find a tambourine with a double-row jingle placement. This ensures a better and richer tone than a single-row jingle placement. Furthermore, if you prefer a wooden tambourine to a synthetic one, consider getting a light hardwood shell material.
Drumhead or No Drumhead?
Traditional handheld tambourines would have a calfskin drumhead glued on them; however, are they crucial for a great tone? If you’re playing a handheld tambourine, getting one with a drumhead would be ideal. This allows users to utilize various playing techniques such as finger rolls and other styles.
Consequently, if you’re mounting a tambourine attachment over a hi-hat or cymbal, you should go with a headless tambourine. A headless tambourine attachment will provide a better hitting surface— which means better playability— than a tambourine drum with drumheads.
Frequently Asked Questions about a Tambourine Drum
Is a tambourine a drum?
A traditional tambourine drum features a calfskin head with slots for jingles. Consequently, putting it into the category of small frame drums. However, percussionists often play the tambourine using their hands, unlike typical drums. Still, there are tambourine drum styles that users can mount on cymbals, allowing them to be played with drumsticks.
How to play tambourine drum?
Drummers can play a tambourine attachment on cymbals using any drumstick— even the best sticks for electronic drums. Conversely, things get complicated when it comes to handheld tambourine drums.
To properly play a handheld tambourine, users should hold the tambourine using their non-dominant hand. If you want a tambourine’s tone to come from the jingles, you should hold it at a 45° angle. However, if you prefer playing the tambourine drum using the drumhead, then the most efficient angle would be at 90°.
What are tambourine cymbals called?
The overall sound of a tambourine drum will come from the metal within its shell. The percussion community refers to these metals as jingles. However, its formal monicker is “zills”.
What is a tambourine without a drum called?
A tambourine without a drumhead is often called a headless tambourine drum. This tambourine style can be seen on a tambourine attachment mounted on cymbals within a drumkit.
Is tambourine a percussion instrument?
The tambourine is one of the most common percussion instruments today. Usually, a tambourine drum fits the family of hand and orchestral percussion instruments.
Enjoy your New Tambourine Drum!
In conclusion, you can incorporate a tambourine within a drumkit by mounting it on a cymbal or hi-hat. On the other hand, a handheld tambourine drum can stand on its own as a standalone instrument. There’s just a lot of use for tambourines within a musical and rhythmic context.
I hope this guide has shed some light on the basics of a tambourine drum. In addition, I wish to have helped remove the confusion on the topic of tambourines. How’s your experience with your new tambourine drum? Feel free to comment below; I would love to hear your thoughts!