Double bass pedals are very personalized things. They may be the heartbeat of your drum setup or they’ll just be an extra dynamic to add to your drumming. Whichever camp you fall under, the process of buying a double pedal will always be the same.
Top 3 - Double Bass Pedals
There are so many pedals to choose from, and all the advertised features can often become overwhelming to understand. So, I’m going to make your buying process a bit easier by showing you some of the best double bass pedal out there.
I’ll breakdown everything they offer and tell you which pedals will be best for certain settings.
7 Best Double Bass Pedals on the Drumming Market
Table of Contents
- 7 Best Double Bass Pedals on the Drumming Market
- Buying a Double Bass Pedal - Key Factors
The first pedal on the list is the DW 3000 Series. You’ll notice that DW has several high-quality double bass pedals that you’ll be seeing on this list. The 3000 Series is a good one to start with as it sits somewhere in the middle of entry-level pedals and top-quality ones.
It’s DW’s most affordable double bass pedal. However, it’s still fairly expensive compared to pedals from other brands. With that being said, it’s well worth the cost it has.
The pedal has a dual-chain turbo drive design that makes it feel incredibly responsive to play with. I found the action to be quite smooth and easy to work around.
The pedals have a fair amount of adjustability, allowing you to tweak the design to fit your preferences perfectly. The only downside is that the left pedal isn’t as adjustable as some drummers would like it to be.
Speaking of the left pedal, it has a single post design that allows you to place it closer to the hi-hat pedal. I absolutely love this feature as I feel quite uncomfortable when my hi-hats are sitting too far away from me.
The slave pedal on the 3000 Series allows you to bring your hi-hats in closer than you typically would with a double pedal.
The other thing that I love about this double pedal is the combination of Velcro and spurs on the bottom of each pedal. That combination ensures that the pedals don’t move an inch when you’re playing. You can play fast patterns without worrying about it which is perfect for double pedal drummers.
The final thing to mention about the 3000 Series is that it comes with DW’s 2-way beaters. With these, you can choose between having felt or plastic beaters.
PDP is a family company to DW, so technically the PDP 500 Series is another DW pedal. Unlike any DW piece of gear, this double bass pedal is incredibly inexpensive. In fact, it’s the budget option on this list, coming in with the lowest price out of all the available double bass pedals I’ve listed.
The pedals have a dual-chain drive design, making them feel strong and responsive. The action is fairly quick, allowing fast playing from any drummer. You’d be able to comfortably reach very high bass drum speeds with the PDP 500 Series.
Something unique that I love about this pedal is that it’s not overbuilt. It has everything you need from a double pedal without offering too much. You’ll find yourself utilizing every feature it has. There’s beauty in that simplicity.
Another thing that I like is that the pedals are fairly quiet. You wouldn’t expect that from such an affordable double bass pedal, but you don’t hear any squeaking or movement from the pedals.
This is arguably the most affordable high-quality double bass pedal that you can get. I’d highly recommend it to anyone looking for a double pedal that needs either a backup option or just a tool that will get the work done.
The one small flaw that I’ve noticed with this pedal is that there is a metal tab that sticks out from the left of the slave pedal post. This tab has the potential to get in the way of your hi-hat stand, preventing you from keeping the hi-hats close to you when you’re playing.
This small flaw may be enough to chase a few drummers away, but you can work around it if you need to. I’ve even seen one drummer use a saw to cut the tab off!
The Pearl P932 is the wildcard option on this list. Pearl has some other popular pedals like the Demon Drive and Eliminator. While those two pedals are more expensive and have more features, the P932 pedal is like as if the two of them had a kid. It shares some of the features but comes at a much more affordable price.
The biggest similarity between this pedal and the Demon Drive is the chain speed. However, the P932 only has one chain driving each pedal. This leads it to not be as responsive as pedals with dual chains, yet it still surprisingly feels great to play.
The biggest selling point of this pedal is the longboard design. The pedals are much longer than standard pedals, giving you a larger surface area for your feet to work. Longboard pedals are especially loved by metal drummers. They allow you to work your feet in ways that shorter pedals don’t.
If you’re a fan of using the heel-toe technique to play fast patterns, the longboard pedals on the P932 will be perfect for you.
One thing that I love about the P932 is that the slave pedal has the exact same response as the main pedal. They both feel exactly the same, allowing you to work evenly between each of your feet. The movement between both pedals feels very natural in general.
Overall, the P932 is a fantastic pedal that gives you all the great design features of Pearl at an affordable price. If you’ve never used a longboard pedal before, it may be worth giving it a try.
The DW 9000 Series has a strong reputation for being the king of bass drum pedals. It’s one of the highest-quality double bass pedals that you can get your hands on, and it’s been that way for years. I like to think of it as the Lamborghini of bass drum pedals.
It’s extremely heavy-duty, making it steady, stable, and durable. The first time I picked up a 9000 Series pedal, I could immediately tell that it was expensive purely by how heavy it felt. Although it’s heavy, it feels like butter when you’re playing it.
The action is so smooth that your feet tend to just glide along. I think the best quality of this double pedal is that it feels effortless to play. Some pedals hold you back with their tight action and janky designs. The 9000 Series pedals are the furthest thing from that.
I particularly love the versatility of this pedal. You may think that it’s a heavy-duty pedal for heavy metal drummers. However, it works excellently in any setting where a double pedal is required. I’ve even seen a jazz drummer using it once.
Overall, this is a luxury pedal that you should get if you can afford it. It’s incredibly expensive, costing around $800. It’s one of the best pedals in the world, but the price tag is unreachable for a good number of drummers.
I used a Tama Speed Cobra single pedal for years and it was one of my favorite pieces of gear. The double pedal version is a favorite of many metal drummers thanks to the longboard design and the fact that the pedal is built with the intention of speed in mind.
The biggest feature of this particular double pedal is the Cobra Coil spring. Each pedal has a spring underneath it that bounces the pedals back to the starting position after each time you play them. This gives you a sort of floating effect that caters very well to fast double pedal playing.
I found that the spring took some time getting used to. The beater on the pedal hit my shin a few times. However, I learned to love it after a while. These pedals have the intention of allowing you to play wildly fast patterns thanks to those springs.
The overall feeling of the Speed Cobra is very smooth, yet somehow quite powerful. You can get strong and mighty strokes but also light and delicate ones quite easily.
One thing to mention about this double pedal is that there are so many adjustment options that it might become a bit overwhelming. However, you’ll love them once you take the time to learn what all the adjustments do. It’s an incredibly customizable pedal, meaning it caters to almost everyone.
A great addition is that the pedals come with a carry case when you buy them. It’s a small addition that boosts the price-to-value ratio a bit.
One negative thing I’ll say about the Speed Cobra is that the beaters aren’t great. I know quite a few drummers who agree with me here. The beaters are quite thin and obviously designed for speed.
However, I shot right through my bass drumhead with a Speed Cobra beater once. It’s never happened with any other kind of beater. So, I’d suggest looking at those if you get this pedal and potentially replacing them with something that isn’t so tight and angled.
The DW MDD is the only direct drive pedal that I’ve put on this list. Direct drives aren’t as popular as chain drives. However, the MDD is a double bass pedal that you should highly consider checking out.
At first glance, it looks almost robotic. It has a sleek aluminum design that excellently complements all the engineering that goes into making it.
It’s arguably the most adjustable pedal you can get. There are so many design features that allow you to change things to suit your preferences. The whole idea behind the pedal is that it’s suitable for everyone no matter who you are or what environment you play in.
The pedals are seriously fast and responsive. I found that the slightest movement from your leg will transfer over to the pedals effortlessly and smoothly.
I noticed that the beater hubs are slightly higher up than most other pedals. This means that the beaters sit higher in their starting position. They’ve designed it like this to add power to the pedal. However, you can simply lower the beaters if you find them to be sitting too high.
I know a few drummers who think this pedal is over-engineered and offers way more than anyone needs. That may be true for some drummers, but others will really enjoy everything it has to offer. It’s yet another luxury pedal from DW that you should get if you can afford it.
With that being said, it’s the most expensive pedal on this list. It’s also one of the most expensive double pedals in the world, costing well over $1000.
Moving back to the world of affordable pedals, the last double bass pedal that I’m putting on this list is the Iron Cobra. It’s an absolute classic from Tama that has been in the drum industry for decades.
It’s double chain-driven, providing a smooth base for any drummer wanting to play fast patterns. Two of my favorite things about the Iron Cobra are its simplicity and its durability.
It’s been a staple pedal option of metal drummers for many years thanks to these two things. While other pedals offer all the bells and whistles, I’ve found that the Iron Cobra is a workhorse that does the exact job you need it to do.
I particularly like the beaters that come with the pedal. Although they’re not anything fancy, they have large surface areas, making it feel great when you’re playing the bass drum. You can swap them around to either have a felt or a rubber side as well.
Overall, the Iron Cobra is a good and safe option to go with if you’re looking for a double pedal. There aren’t any hectic features that you need to get your head around, and it’s a sturdy double bass pedal that many drummers have used over the years.
Buying a Double Bass Pedal - Key Factors
Double bass pedals are often the key pieces of gear in a drummer’s setup. This is especially true if you primarily play music that requires fast bass drum playing.
So, choosing a double pedal is something that needs a fair bit of thought before you pull the plug. Here are a few things that you should know about before deciding what to get.
Standard Pedals vs Longboard Pedals
Most drummers are accustomed to playing on standard bass drum pedals. The dimensions of a pedalboard are mostly the same, no matter what brand of pedal you’re playing with. There’s a different kind of pedal that you can get called a longboard pedal.
Longboard pedals have a longer footboard than standard pedals. This longer footboard can feel quite uncomfortable if you’re not used to playing on it. However, the benefit of longboard pedals is that you can utilize them to play faster patterns.
Longboard pedals are also loved by drummers who have large feet. I’m not the biggest fan of longboards myself, but I used to have a student with basketball player feet who loved coming to play on my Speed Cobra.
He used to say that it felt way smoother and lighter than other popular double bass pedals like the Iron Cobra, which felt stiffer and just not as easy to control.
It’s arguably easier to play faster on a longboard, but it’s up to you on which type of pedal to get. I know many drummers that prefer to work a bit harder to get fast patterns on standard pedals.
If you play heel-up on the drums, you’re most probably going to prefer using a standard pedal. Longboard pedals work excellently for drummers who play heel-down and utilize the heel-toe technique to play fast patterns.
Direct-Drive vs Chain-Drive
The other big difference that you can find in double pedals is the choice between chain-drive or direct-drive. Most pedals are chain-driven. This means that the pedal is connected to the beater via a chain mechanism that rotates as you play.
Higher-quality pedals will have two chains while lower-quality pedals will only have one. Having two chains connected to the pedal makes it feel more responsive and easier to play with. Pedals with only one chain still feel great, just not as responsive as dual-chain ones.
Direct-drive pedals don’t use chain mechanisms. Instead, the pedalboard is connected directly to the beater and is designed so that the beater rotates to hit the bass drum as the pedal is pressed down. Direct-drive pedals are designed so that there is no delay between the pedal and the beater.
While that may sound like the better option due to there being no delay, most drummers actually prefer chain-driven pedals. Direct-drive pedals feel incredibly weird at first, and that weirdness chases drummers away.
However, you can get some serious speed on the bass drum once you get used to using a direct-drive pedal.
Direct-drive pedals are mostly good for drummers who play heel-down. I play heel-up, and I feel like I have more control when I play a pedal that is chain-driven.
Every double pedal comes with a set of beaters that you can use along with the pedals. Some included beaters are multi-purpose, having more than one side to use. Others have one material with no adjustability.
One of my favorite things about bass drum pedals is the fact that you can easily switch out the beaters whenever you want to. So, the beaters that come with a pedal shouldn’t be a huge determining factor over whether you buy it or not.
However, some double bass drum pedals have better beaters. As I said above, I’m not the biggest fan of the beaters from the Speed Cobra but I love the beaters on the Iron Cobra.
Something that I suggest all drummers do is buy a few separate bass drum beaters so that you can whip them out whenever you need. The main types of beaters are felt and rubber.
You can also get beaters that have wood or fleece material. All the different beater heads will give you different tones from the bass drum.
Another thing to check out when buying a double bass drum pedal is how adjustable it is. Different pedals have varying levels of adjustability. Typically, the more expensive pedals will be more adjustable. However, you can find some interesting design features in pedals of all prices.
The first thing you should look for is how the springs can be adjusted. This will change how tight or loose the pedals feel, and different pedals have certain ways of changing those springs.
Some pedals will simply have you tightening knobs while others have elaborate designs that make things a bit easier and smoother.
Another thing to look for is how a pedal allows you to raise or lower the height of the pedals. Everyone has preferences over how high they want their pedals to sit, and many double bass pedals make it quite easy to find that preference.
Some bass drum pedals, such as the DW MDD, have adjustability features that you wouldn’t find on other pedals. If you’re a sucker for customization, adjustability settings should be high up on your priority list when looking for a good double bass drum pedal.
Double Bass Pedal Brands
Most drum brands sell killer double bass drum pedals. However, you would have noticed that all the pedals above were either from DW, Tama, or Pearl. The biggest reason for this is that these three brands have been making excellent double bass pedals for the longest time.
All the pedals above are very well-known in the double bass pedal world, making them popular choices for double pedal drummers. You shouldn’t limit yourself to these brands, though.
You’ll find yourself having more context and understanding over double bass pedals when you also check out products from Gibraltar, Mapex, and Yamaha. The Mapex Falcon, especially, is an extremely popular option that has its own fans and has almost carved out a separate niche.
Yamaha FP9 is another popular double bass pedal with lots of dedicated fans. It offers a similar feel to Tama's Iron Cobra, but some drummers find it smoother and better to use especially with the included straps.
With that being said, the pedals above have the strongest reputations. The brands they’re connected to have benefitted from that immensely. Tama is a drum brand that caters fairly strongly to metal drummers. So, it’s only natural that they have some excellent double bass pedals on offer.
DW and Pearl are known for making some of the best drum hardware on the market. Since drum pedals fall under the category of hardware, the double bass pedals they offer follow along the same lines.
If you’re not sponsored or endorsed by any drum brand, you have the freedom to check out all the pedals on offer. I strongly recommend you do that when searching for a double pedal.
Pricing and Accessories
The final thing to take note of when looking for the best double bass pedal for your use case is the price tag along with what accessories the pedal comes with. You would have had a pre-established budget when searching for a pedal, so you need to make sure that the pedal you’re getting fits nicely into that budget.
Double bass pedals have a fairly large price range. You can find an entry-level one for less than $100 or you could get a top-quality one for well over $1000. Whichever pedal you choose to get, know that most double pedals stay true to their price point in terms of quality.
Pedals often include a few accessories, so that is something to take note of as well. The biggest and most valuable accessory that can come with a double pedal is a bag to hold it in. Many pedals come with these. So, just check beforehand as it will save you some space in a hardware bag.
It’s important to know that when you buy a double bass pedal, you should buy one that will support your intent to play fast. You shouldn’t buy one with the intent of playing fast.
Fast bass drum speed comes from technique and practice, not from the pedal you’re using. Once you understand that concept, you can find the perfect pedal for your needs and preferences.
Each pedal I’ve listed here has unique features to it. Choose the one that resonates with you the most and make the purchase. You won’t regret having a high-quality pedal that will last you years.
Now, a closing tip. Double bass pedals, like many other musical gears, are also about how you feel while using them and not just mere specs. If possible, head over to at least a couple of stores nearby and try as many pedals in person as possible, because oftentimes, the least likely pedal would impress you the most when you try it out.