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My journey into the world of electronic drums began in college when I got a Yamaha DTXpress kit. I put many great hours of practice into it, but I eventually sold it.
Electronic drum manufactures have come a long way since 2009 and unfortunately, Yamaha isn’t leading the charge in the entry-level market.
Despite that, today we’ll be talking in-depth about the Yamaha DTX450K; what to expect, some of its great features, and my overall thoughts of the kit.
Yamaha DTX450K Review
The DTX450K is no longer made, so we recommend checking out the newer 452K.
The DTX450K is part of Yamaha’s 400 series, which is basically their most affordable line of electronic drums, though arguably the 402 series is as well.
Overall, the kit looks and feels decent, though it lacks some major features that competing brands like Alesis and Roland are featuring on their newer kits.
The 450K is also rather pricey in comparison, as well, for what you get.
The 450K is the top model of the 400 line and is great for beginners up to advanced players.
One great feature we’ll talk about later is the module’s integration with a tablet.
Online reviews of the DTX450K aren’t terrible, but they’re not great either.
What comes in the box?
Upon receiving your kit, you’ll find a five-piece kit complete with a ride, crash, hats, three toms, a snare, kick pad, a kick pedal, and a hi-hat pedal.
Here is a more in-depth breakdown of what you get:
- DTX400 Drum Module
- Three-zoned snare pad (1)
- Single-zoned tom pad (3)
- Hi-hat pad (1)
- Hi-hat pedal (1)
- Cymbal pad (2)
- KP65 Kick pad (1)
- Yamaha FP6110A kick drum pedal (1)
- Power adapter (1)
- Cables required
- One year warranty for manufacturer defects
This is a pretty standard affair when it comes to most electronic kits these days. You won’t get tons of pads and cymbals on an entry-level setup.
Quality of the physical pads and hardware
I wasn’t fairly impressed with the kit overall, considering the price point. The cymbals are half cut out, presumably to save money on production cost.
Based on my initial reaction, I almost feel as if this drum kit could be marketed at a price point similar to that of the Alesis Surge Mesh. Maybe even less; this kit doesn’t even have mesh pads!
Included kick pedal
One of the most attractive selling points of the DTX450K is the inclusion of their kick pedal, the Yamaha FP6110A. The pedal is fantastic and it is cheap. I used this pedal a ton back in college.
Alesis also includes a kick pedal with their kits, but they’re no where near the level of quality that Yamaha’s is.
Could this sway a potential new drummer? Possibly.
I think most of us already have kick pedals, but for the absolute brand new, beginning player, this might seem like a good inclusion.
The feel of the pads
The pads themselves are fairly decent; this is what I had expected from Yamaha, to be honest. I’ve never found their rubber pads to be bad at all. When comparing them to a mesh pad, yes they aren’t as great, but these get the job done just fine.
The only way I can compare it in words is it’s like a practice pad with less rebound, if that makes sense. This is actually a positive since mesh heads often give you a false sense of what an acoustic drum feels like.
The kick pad on the DTX450K does support double bass drum pedals.
The pads are relatively quiet
Drums are loud. We all know this. In fact, this is one of the many reasons you might opt to buy an electronic kit.
The Yamaha delivers well in this department, just as most electronic drum kits do. That being said, they aren’t the quietest pads you can find.
Up the spectrum in Yamaha’s lineup are the 700 and 800 series which feature textured silicone pads.
These are far quieter than any rubber pad will ever be. If noise is a concern, you may want to think about this factor.
When I was in college, my DTX drum set featured the traditional rubber pads. My next-door neighbor could hear me playing through the walls and did complain to me a number of times.
The DTX400 drum module
The DTX400 series isn’t my favorite sounding module, though most of them are pretty terrible in the low-end of the market.
Compared to the entry-level modules from Alesis and Roland, I really can’t pick a winner here.
Let me start off by saying that the drum module is very basic. You won’t get features like custom samples, multi-velocity sounds, additional trigger inputs, recording in, etc. Though you may not need these features.
The unit itself is a small and has a matte-black finish.
I actually do like the design of the module.
There are no LCD screens or knobs, just rubber buttons to change settings.
To indicate settings, these buttons are illuminated with an orange light when pressed.
Included sounds and kits
When you set up your kit for the first time, you’ll notice a row of ten buttons on the top of the module.
These allow you to change which kit you are on.
There are rock kits, orchestral kits, and percussion kits. A total of 169 different drum and percussion samples are included with this module.
You can customize and kit with different sounds of your choosing.
The drum module of the DTX450K also features ten play-a-long songs where the drums on each track can be toggled on or off.
This is great for beginning drummers who want to hear what a drum part might sound like on a track.
If they hit the drums mute button, they can attempt to emulate what was originally on the practice track.
The practice tracks sound suspiciously similar to what my DTX kit had in 2009. I would have thought by now they would have updated these for a new kit.
The metronome function of the module seems to be fine; no complaints here.
It’s fairly simple operationally and uses a traditional beep for the click track and can be toggled to a voice, as well.
The speed of the metronome is configured by holding the metronome button and inputting the desired BPM on the module.
Just like many other electronic kits available, the DTX450K also features a training mode inside of the module. There are three different modes to choose from:
- Groove Check – This mode tests your ability to play in time with the metronome. The system will grade you upon completion.
- Lessons – 10 separate training lessons.
- Fast Blast – An endurance test to build your strength as a drummer.
In addition to the training functions built in, if you happen to own an iPad, you can use it in conjunction with your DTX450K.
Song Beats app
First, there’s the Song Beats app which shows you a visual representation of the drum set. While you’re playing along to a practice song, the kit animates with every drum or cymbal that is played.
This is very helpful for learning the practice songs while the pre-recorded drums are still on. There are two different views to choose from while using the Song Beats app.
The overhead view shows a kit from the top down; each drum or cymbal is illuminated as played. The other view is called the scrolling view, in what I can best describe looks like a horizontal version of Guitar Hero or Rock Band. This mode is very helpful for learning parts.
Music Soft app
If you’ve already crushed through all ten pre-made tracks, fear not. The Music Soft app allows you to download custom MIDI songs to your kit.
I’m still unaware if these tracks come from Yamaha’s own library or if you’re just expected to find MIDI arrangements of popular songs on the internet.
It does behave a little strange, since it will overwrite a previous practice track once imported. I also may be doing something incorrectly.
Commonly asked questions about the DTX450K
Here are some of the most frequently asked questions regarding the kit:
Does the DTX450K come with headphones?
Yes or no, depending on if you find a bundle with the drum kit. Typically, electronic drum kits do not come with extra accessories.
If you’re in the market for a pair, take a minute to check out our roundup of the best headphones for drummers.
Are you able to add more pads to the drum module?
To my knowledge, I don’t believe you can add any additional drum or cymbal pads to the drum module.
For expansion, you need to at least have the DTX500 or above.
Overall, the DTX450K is a decent beginner Yamaha electronic drum set, but it won’t be the last one you own if you’re a serious drummer.
I don’t believe the kit itself is bad, but it might be a little bit too pricey for what you are getting.
If I had to suggest something better for you as a beginner, I’d look more towards the Roland TD-11 or the Alesis Surge Mesh.
For a kit a little more pricey, I can’t recommend the TD-25KV more. Be sure to check out our contributor Adam Bahl’s in-depth review of the Roland TD-25KV.
They are going to be a bit more expensive, but I think you’ll get your money’s worth on either of those kits.
Don’t just take my word on it either. Check out all the owner’s reviews at Amazon.
Have you used the DTX450K? What are your thoughts on the kit? I’d love to hear from you down below in the comments.
If the DTX450K doesn’t seem like the right choice, maybe a different electronic drum set may fit you better or perhaps try checking out an electronic drum pad instead.
Thanks for reading today; I’ll see you in the next one.[wp-review id=”5350″]
Images used with permission courtesy of Yamaha.com