Unless you actually play drums, it’s hard to imagine how important good drum thrones actually are.
As the base from which we support all our movements, and attain our leverage…
A good drum throne not only makes it more comfortable to play for extended periods…
It actually makes a noticeable difference in the speed and precision of your footwork.
Sadly…even many drummers have no clue what they’re missing, simply because they’ve never actually sat on a really good drum throne before.
So let’s get this problem hand for you right now, with this ultimate guide to the best drum thrones on the planet.
Here we go…
Who Should Buy Budget Drum Thrones?
The answer is: no one. Even top-of-the-line drum thrones are relatively inexpensive ($250 is nothing compared to the other stuff we buy as drummers).
So I honestly wouldn’t recommend the cheaper options to anyone.
Especially since they’re unlikely to be any better than the throne you currently have.
Instead, you’re better off just saving your money for one of the really good ones, which we’ll cover in a moment.
Right now though, if you currently have NOTHING…and you won’t be able to afford better in the foreseeable future…
Here are some top options between $50-100, which is the absolute lowest range you should even consider:
Up next, let’s look at some reasons why you should ideally spend more on something better:
The 4 Benefits of Premium Drum Thrones
When you choose the best of the best, these are the biggest benefits you’ll get:
- Quieter Movement – which means you won’t hear the annoying squeaks and pops you normally get with cheaper chairs. This can be especially important in recording situations.
- More Comfort – which means it’s much easier to get through those multi-hour playing sessions without needing to stand up for a break.
- More Stability – which means your footwork could immediately show noticeable improvement.
- Better Back Support – which is not only nice for the added comfort, but is essential if you want to continue playing into your later years.
Now…keep in mind that these 4 benefits apply to ALL the thrones we’re about to see right now.
1. Tama Thrones
As one of the most recognizable names in drum gear, and drumming in general…
Tama took it upon themselves to improve their already amazing line of thrones with their new and improved, “First Chair” Series.
In this line, they increased overall stability of the throne by adding the following features:
- extra large rubber feet
- stronger legs
- lower center-of-gravity
They’ve also added two signature features: their “Seat Lock” and “Glide Tite Grip Joint”, which are both explained in further detail in the video below:
In the 1st chair series, there are several variations to choose from, including:
- the standard Ergo Rider with a tractor-shaped seat
- the Round Rider with a round seat
- the Wide Rider with an XL tractor seat
- the Glide Rider with hydraulic seat adjustment
- and the optional backrest for any of them
Here are the links to each of them below:
- Ergo Rider – (Amazon/B&H/Thomann)
- Ergo Rider w/ backrest – (Amazon/B&H/Thomann)
- Back Rest – (Amazon/Thomann)
- Round Rider – (Amazon/B&H/Thomann)
- Glide Rider – (Amazon/Thomann)
- Wide Rider – (Thomann)
As you’re about to see, each of the upcoming brands offer similar options as well…which typically means a choice between:
- round OR tractor shaped seats
- standard OR extra large sizing
- manual spindle OR hydraulic seat adjustment
- backrest OR no backrest
Now on to the next brand…
2. Drum Workshop Thrones
As the reigning King of all things drums…
Drum Workshop probably makes a wider variety of high-end drum equipment than any other brand.
And their selection of thrones is no exception. They have:
- expensive thrones – in the 9000 series
- mid-priced thrones – in the 3000 and 5000 series
- budget thrones – in the PDP 700 and 800 series
And among these many options you can find virtually any combination of features you desire.
At the very top of the 9000 series is their Heavy-Duty Airlift chairs, which feature a pneumatic height adjustment.
In the following video, you can see how it works. Even though it shows tom and snare stands, they’re all part of the same hardware series, so the info applies to their thrones as well.
Here is a list of links to their top models in the upper price ranges:
- 5100 Round – (Amazon/Thomann)
- 5120 Tractor – (Amazon)
- 9100 Round – (Amazon/Thomann)
- 9120M Tractor – (Amazon/Thomann)
- Heavy Duty Airlift Round – (Amazon/Thomann)
- Heavy Duty Airlift Tractor – (Amazon/Thomann)
3. Roc N Soc Thrones
As the one and only company on this list that specializes entirely in seating for musicians…
Roc n Soc has arguably been the name most synonymous with drum thrones for many years now.
In fact, when you look back at their history…you’ll find that they’ve been the leading innovator in virtual every technological advance in drum thrones over the past several decades.
They were the first to offer:
- motion thrones
- sculpted seats
- seats with colorful fabric and stitching
- gas-powered height adjustment and shock absorption
- optional backrests
…plus many more advancements that I won’t even bother mention…since I’m sure you get the point.
Now here is a list of their most popular models:
4. Gibraltar Thrones
While they don’t have nearly the same reputation for drum thrones as the previous brands on this list…
With the new thrones in their 9608 series…they bring one particularly interesting feature to the table, that we haven’t seen in any previous thrones.
The seat fabric is made of unique slick-textured nylon webbing on the outer edges, which serves two purposes:
- it’s more breathable than other fabrics, which keeps your butt cool and sweat-free.
- it’s slicker than other fabrics, which allows for free and easy movement of your legs.
And while this second feature might have you wondering if you’ll be slipping and sliding on this seat…
You need not worry, because Gibraltar addressed this problem by adding a non-slip patch in the center which keeps your butt firmly anchored in place.
Check it out in the video:
And while Gibraltar does carry many other throne models as well, I won’t mention them here since none stand out in any real way, compared to the thrones we’ve already covered.
Now finally for the last brand on the list…
5. Ahead Thrones
As a company primarily known for their innovations in drumsticks and drumming accessories…
Ahead is probably not the first name that comes to mind when you think of high-end drum thrones.
However…it’s quite possible that their new throne, the Spinal G, is the most unique and innovative throne on the market today. In fact, many user reviews say it’s the best they’ve ever had.
So what exactly makes this throne so special? Well…
Based on the concept of “Ergokinetics,” a term coined by the throne’s designer: Dr. Richard Robershaw…
The Spinal G is designed to support your body in motion, as you’re playing…
In contrast to the more familiar term, “ergonomics“, referring to things designed to support your body at rest.
And it accomplishes this goal with its one-of-a-kind split-seat design, which does two things:
- First, by leaving an open space down the middle, it removes pressure on your tailbone, which is supposedly one of the leading causes of back pain that many drummers experience.
- Second, by having a separate cushion for each “cheek”, it provides what they call a “spring-balanced” design, which essentially offers separate and reciprocal support for each half of your body.
To hear more about exactly what the Spinal G has to offer, check out this video:
Here are the links to both versions:
6. Pearl Thrones
Unlike some brands in this list…
Pearl is generally synonym with rock drums for most people, probably just like Fender is to electric guitar.
What few people know however is that they make excellent drum thrones too.
As a matter of fact, they’ve been pretty busy in their R&D department the last couple of years and have birthed a few significant innovations, resulting in a completely renewed Roadster line.
The 3 biggest ones being:
- “Multi-Core” technology – which is a proprietary inovation for the seat cushion and provides extra comfort thanks to various layers of foam wrapped around the cushion
- Tri Lateral design on some models – which is basically a triangle-shaped saddle that gives you both saddle or round seat option
- Shock Absorber – some models have a sort of spring that will absorb shocks for added comfort.
- Aluminum struts on some models instead of regular legs that provide both strength and stability as well as highly reduced weight.
On top of that, all the models listed below can accept an optional backrest, so you can buy the seat first and get the backrest later on if you decide you need one.
Check out these models here:
- Pearl Roadster D-1500 – (Thomann)
- Pearl Roadster D-1500S (extra low height) – (Thomann)
- Pearl Roadster D-1500TGL – (Amazon/Thomann)
- Pearl Roadster D-1500-RGL (round seat) – (Thomann)
- Pearl Roadster D-1500SP (with shock absorber) – (Thomann)
- Pearl Roadster D-3500 – (Thomann)
- Pearl Roadster D-3500BR (with backrest) – (Thomann)