Roland TD30 comparison: which model is right for you?

td30compIn the past Roland’s flagship V-Drum kit, the TD-20, only came in one size; MASSIVE!  They also had a fairly huge price tag as well coming in at well over £5500. Ooooooft!  That’s not to say they weren’t worth the money.  In fact, I’d go as far to say that they were excellent value due to having amazing mesh drums and a fantastic sound module with unparalleled sound quality, response and sound designing potential.

TD-30KV

The current top of the range kit is the Roland TD-30KV.  It’s similarly priced and even better than its predecessor, however, unlike the TD-20, it has two smaller siblings which use the same sound module and therefore deliver the same sound quality at a fraction of the cost.  So, what are they called? What’s the difference? Why do you need one in your life? Read on friends and all will become clear!

This kit is a triumph.  In my humble opinion, it is the best electronic drum kit in the world!  Roland’s most advanced full size drums and cymbals give the player incredible feel and response.  When combined with the TD30 module, they pick up every nuance in your playing.  Put simply, the more sensitive your pads are, the more information is sent to the brain and consequently, the more variation, expression and style you achieve.  For example, the VH13 hi-hat is capable of detecting 127 stages of sensitivity meaning that every variation between open and closed states is interpreted by the module.  So, what’s in the box?

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TD-30K

 Substantially cheaper and more portable, the TD30K has exactly the same sound quality as its bigger brother.  If the TD-30KV is the best electronic kit in the word, then then this one is a very close second!  So, why is it so much cheaper?  Firstly, the stand is a fair bit smaller and not quite as heavy duty, although still very robust. Secondly there’s not as many drums and they are smaller, moderately simpler and less flashy looking.  They still pick up and respond better than the vast majority of electronic pads and cymbals, however they are a bit cheaper in cost than the TD30KV’s equivalents.  The hi-hat is a VH-11 which is excellent but has less variation between open and closed in comparison to the VH-13.  Despite these differences, I’d argue that there’s some real practical advantages to the TD-30K.  They are very portable and quick to set up and deliver exactly the same sound quality as the TD30KV at a fraction of the cost!

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TD-30KSE

This kit came about because many TD-30K customers wanted to buy, or even swap out their hi-hat and snare to get the VH-13 and PD-128S that come with the TD-30KV due to their enhanced sensitivity and playability.  Roland delivered exactly this with an added bonus. The original PD-125 now becomes an extra floor tom giving you a kit with the same number of drums and cymbals as the flagship TD-30KV.  Although it’s not cheap, this kit is excellent value for money. To buy the VH13 and PD128S on their own, the combined cost is currently £838.  Buying the TD-30KSE currently saves you just under £300 straight away and gives you the best of both worlds!

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Remember, whichever of these kits you decide to go for, the quality of sound, response and feel is better than anything else on the market.  The TD30 module is absolutely amazing.  Its “SuperNatural” behavioural modelling technology provides a truly authentic playing experience allowing you to relax and enjoy playing the drums, rather than compromising on your playing style to accommodate the sound module’s limitations. Their superior build quality means that you can trust them to go the distance for teaching, live performance and studio use and above all else, they are great fun!

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