We decided to do an in-depth review of the Roland TD-1KV today. But before now, we’ve done a review on electronic and acoustic drum sets. So, just in case you missed those, you might want to check them, especially the buying guides, so you’re not lost here.
Anyway, Roland is one of our favorite music brands in the world for so many reasons. This brand sure knows its business. Every instrument the brand carries from synthesizers, to electronic drum sets have been a hit.
If you’ve been skeptical about trying electronic drums for the fear that they won’t sound the same, then maybe it’s time you tried the Roland TD-1KV. It will completely change your mind about electronic drums with its quality features and affordable price.
Let’s now begin this review proper.
Roland Corporation is a Japanese brand and a leading manufacturer and distributor of a vast array of electronic musical instruments. Some of its products include keyboards, synthesizers, digital recording equipment, guitar, audio processing devices, amplifiers, and of course, electronic drum sets.
This brand has given more than 40 years to this industry which tells of its journey and experience in the business. It might be a much younger brand compared to Yamaha and the likes. However, the brand’s adaptability and dedication to innovation has seen it setting standards in the industry till date.
Furthermore, its electronic drums are some of the most highly sought after products in the drumming community. And Roland prides itself in its revolutionary approach to the making and creation of these drums which offer a flexible alternative to traditional drums.
In its V-drums line, this brand carries some of the best electronic drums the world has seen great for both on stage and studio use.
Besides electronic drums though, Roland carries other innovative equipment for the percussionist also. These high quality equipment help to meet a wide range of the drummer’s needs from recording to performing to practicing.
And now, to the review of the Roland TD-1KV itself…
What’s In The Box?
So, what exactly do you get at your doorstep when you finally receive the package of your Roland TD-1KV? Well, here goes:
- Sturdy drum rack which also features a snappy and convenient height adjustment. This makes this kit great for all drummers of all sizes from adults to kids.
- Mesh head PDX-8 V-Pad snare. As you know, mesh heads are the gold standard when it comes to electronic drum kits. So, this snare gives a realistic drum experience with head/rim triggering.
- Beater-less kick pedal.
- 3 gum rubber tom drums – floor tom and rack 1 and 2.
- Beater-less hi-hat pedal.
- Roland TD-1KV Electronic Drum Set Sound Module.
- Audio cable.
- 3 pairs of sticks.
- Polishing cloth to keep your kit in mint conditions.
And now that we know what’s in the box, let’s check out some of the features of this drum set.
Features And Specs
Size And Portability
The Roalnd TD-1KV is a small sized electronic drum kit so it has a teeny footprint. It just measures at 37 x 18 x 13 inches. So, as you can see it’s small which also means that it’s also portable. In case you’re asking, it weighs just 30 pounds. So, yeah it’s easy to transport.
The hardware here is pretty good and you can easily tell that once you look at this kit. We found the frame to be quite sturdy and it holds the entire kit together just right. However, as sturdy as it is, it still moves nicely when you play which is a good thing.
As for the pedals – the kick and hi-hat, those are pretty good too. You’ll love how easy it is to position them to fit. That is, there’s always a way to position them such that they fit the person playing regardless of age or size.
Another thing we like about them is that they have a fantastic response. No matter how elaborate the rhythms get, these pedals match you strength for strength.
If it’s important to you that your drums be silent then you’ve got it with the Roland TD-1KV. This kit is actually pretty quiet and great for night practice as well as it won’t make a peep that could disturb friends or family.
Plus, there’s a headphone jack too. So, simply plug in a pair of good quality headphones and you can practice till your heart’s content and all will be well with the world.
Realistic Snare And Tom Pads
The snare and tom pads of the Roland TD-1KV feel super realistic. Their rebound is beautiful, and they are altogether comfortable and realistic giving a true drumming experience. There’s more to these pads though, so keep reading.
Now, the gum rubber pads on the rack and floor toms are beautiful with a nice rebound like we already mentioned. But even more, this still feels quite easy and comfortable to the wrists when you play which is equally as important. Here’s why.
On some older electronic drum kits, you find rubber pads that are so tough to play on. Just an hour and your wrists and practically crying for mercy. This is not what you want.
Good drum skin should have enough give for you to play without hurting yourself. In the past though, this wasn’t achievable with rubber pads. In fact, with continued playing, the drummer could suffer the risk of long term damage.
Fortunately, Roland in their usual spirit of innovation has given us gum rubber pads which are a lot smoother and more comfortable.
Furthermore, we know the snare drum to be the “king of the drums” in that it is the most predominant one when playing a drum set. Now, with the mesh head Roland uses on the Roland TD-1KV, the snare feels even more comfortable and realistic.
Plus, if you want to, you can always adjust the tension of your drums by using the drum key included in the set.
Lastly, on this section we love the fact that these drum pads are velocity sensitive. This means that the drums will respond to the way you play. So, if you go soft, it sounds soft, if you go hard, it sounds hard and loud.
Sound Module – Loads of Options!
Another very important aspect of any electronic drum set is the sound module. The sound module is like the heart and brain of the electronic drum kit. All the sounds and whatnot go on down there so you want your sound module to be great.
Did Roland do their homework well here? That’s a definite yes! The sound module of the Roland TD-1KV provides the user with a wide variety of useful options.
The sound module boasts 15 different kits from pop kits, to traditional rock, to techno, to hip hop. In fact, there’s bongo as well as other percussion sounds here too!
Of course, there’s the option to expand your sound options using a 3rd party software. Just hook up your kit to your DAW using the USB and you’re good!
If you want, you can also play your drums along with the built-in metronome. It’s a great way to learn to keep time as well as perfect your tempo too. Trust us, a built-in metronome is a significant improvement over woodshedding rhythms and beats that traditional practice pads come with.
What’s more? There’s also a built-in recorder as well which is also great for practice. You can record yourself play and listen back to evaluate. This is a great way to practice and improve on your skills.
Additionally, the Roland TD-1KV also features a “Coach” function. This is great for beginners and expert players alike. Beginners can learn while experts can use this to keep them honest with their meter using the Time and Drop Out settings.
Cymbals Are Pretty Good Too!
You’ll be able to adjust your hi-hat cymbals pretty easily to the level of tension that’s right for you. Plus, you can easily achieve that splashed hi-hat sound by simply depressing the pedal. This is great news for drummers who use this technique for playing jazz or second line drum grooves.
The ride and crash cymbals are also pretty good. We found that you can choke them. Plus, when you hit aggressively, they tend to give a bell sound.
Overall Sturdy Construction
It doesn’t just end at getting an electronic drum kit that looks cool. You need to get something that lasts especially since you’re going to be hitting it constantly. So, investing in something that lasts is your best bet. The Roland TD-1KV is one of such kits.
The construction here is super sturdy and we see this lasting you quite long.
Pros Of the Roland TD-1KV
- This drum kit is a fantastic choice if you’re working with a limited space as it comes with a tiny footprint.
- Comes with 15 default realistic drum kit sounds.
- Super easy to set up. takes 30 minutes max.
- Sturdy and durable construction.
- Sound module boasts a huge array of functions great for learning and great for having fun.
- You can upload your own custom sounds onto this drum kit with the USB connectivity feature.
- Drum and snare pads feel comfortable and realistic.
- Drum pads are also velocity sensitive.
- Great electronic drum kit for beginners.
Cons Of the Roland TD-1KV
- Both pedals might frustrate expert players as they lack that resistance that real hi-hat and bass pedals give. They should be sufficient for the beginner though.
- When playing along to a song, you won’t be able to adjust the volume for the drum and the music individually.
- The mesh snare will not support brushes.
In all, we’re pretty satisfied with the Roland TD-1KV Electronic Drum Set. It sure has its drawbacks but it also boasts a lot of functions that are great for beginners. In fact, in some cases, even experts can use this kit! And once again, Roland makes a home run!