Just like when you bought your first drum set, the first thing that you should do before buying a double bass pedal is educating yourself and looking up documentation.
Double bass pedals are a wonderful addition to anyone’s drum set, and contemporary professional drummers are starting to use them more and more.
Good news is, double bass pedals are easier to play than they seem, and the buying process is not too complicated either.
There are three different types of double bass pedals. The difference lies in the way the force from your foot is driven through the beater towards the batter head of the kick drum.
The options are as follows: belt driven, chain driven or directly driven. All these different solutions come with their respective advantages and disadvantages. You should make your decision based on how you are going to use your pedal and what kind of performance you need.
Belt driven pedals are possibly the most common: if you have ever sit behind a drum set that had a price tag under a thousand dollars then chances are you have used a belt driven pedal. The advantages of belt driven pedals are its high speed and lightness. However, belt driven pedals are also quite quick to wear off and present an unwanted lag. This could slow down you double bass drumming speed.
Chain driven pedals are also very popular among drummers. Even though they need to be cleaned regularly and make a little noise, the advantages they provide – almost zero lag, good adjustability and high durability – are hard to outwit.
Even though they offer unpaired advantages, somehow direct drive double bass pedals did not become as popular as pedals equipped with other drives. Even if there is a slight mechanical feel to them, and the adjustability is negligible, they work without lag and they do not need any kind of maintenance.
The high end of the double bass pedal market offers all three types of pedals. As I said, all three models have their advantages and disadvantages, but good engineering can turn all of them into wonderful instruments.
Since you will be commanding your bass drum with two pedals from now on, it is fair to assume that you would like the two command controls to work the same way. That is, your double bass pedals should be balanced or should provide enough space for adjustments to make them feel balanced.
Also, different drummers prefer different settings for their drums and drum accessories. The tension and kickback of the pedals should be freely adjustable, just as the position of the beater. There are double bass pedals which even give you the ability to switch between, for example, chain drive and belt drive, giving you the power to change the whole character of the pedal with the turn of a drumkey.
Apart from cymbals, double bass pedals have the widest price span in the drumming market. It might be a good idea for you to browse a few online stores and read reviews of models you like. You should not pay a thousand dollar for a cutting edge piece of engineering that you cannot really take advantage of.
Asking another drummer, who has some experience with double bass drums; to accompany you to buy your new pedals is a very good idea: this way you will not be fooled to buy something you were not actually willing to buy. Also, if he can give personal, specialized advice regarding what kind of pedals you should buy.