The 4 Best Double Bass Pedals – Reviews 2016

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Photo by Keary O. / CC BY

When it comes to percussion in metal music, there is nothing more effective in adding that aggressive layer than the double bass pedal. Being able to match the guitars beat-for-beat during faster sections is basically the foundation of some more modern genres of metal music.

With that said, double bass pedals are a pretty delicate piece of gear. Unlike a standard kick pedal, there’s a lot more going on with double bass pedals. You have an additional footplate, linkage, and two pads that need to be accurate.

If you are in the market for a double bass pedal but you’re not sure which one to get, we have prepared a list of 4 of the best double bass pedals in several price ranges. We looked for models which are robust, feature good build quality, and ultimately ones that are responsive. Without further ado, let’s jump right in.

Pearl P3002D Eliminator Demon Drive

Pearl’s double bass pedals have been the golden standard for quite some time. Their range of models includes something for everyone, no matter what your budget is. The model we chose today is a great value pack that brings the performance necessary for more serious applications, along with durable build quality. On top of all that, it’s more than reasonably priced compared to what you get for your money.

Features and Performance

One thing that defines the Eliminator (see full specs) series with Direct Drive is the increased range of flexibility you are presented with. There isn’t a component on this double bass pedal that you can’t adjust. Beater positions, footplate height, you name it.

Each of these components inspires confidence when you look at it closely. The materials used are tough, and the overall design theme falls within the category of heavy duty durability. There is no chain to worry about; instead, you have Pearl’s Direct Drive solution which reduces the “lag” significantly.

Pearl P3002D Eliminator Demon Drive’s performance is everything you would expect from a model in this price range. We are talking silky smooth action that doesn’t have any slack to fight with, nor does it require much initial force to get going. Once you set everything up, this pedal will transfer all of your input on the bass drum’s head with clinical precision.

Pearl P2002C Eliminator

Next pedal on our menu also comes from Pearl, and it’s essentially a lighter version of the double bass pedal we just described above. P2002C is a more basic solution that offers a lot of that reliability found in the more expensive members of this family. The tradeoff is the lack of Direct Drive among other things. Still, the Pearl P2002C Eliminator a great mid-range solution for drummers.

Features and Performance

Increased level of control appears to be the reoccurring theme of the Eliminator series. You can adjust about anything on this Eliminator. The drive system is a lot more standard compared to the P3002D and includes a chain design on both footplates. With that said, the quality of the chain is great so you don’t have to worry about experiencing sudden failures and similar problems.

Performance-wise, Pearl P2002C Eliminator comes on top in its segment of the market. The accuracy is there, even though it’s a chain driven model. Pedals are pretty responsive overall and can be really smooth once you adjust them to your liking. The combination of good quality materials and reliable design makes the Pearl P2002C Eliminator one of the best double bass pedal setups on the market.

Tama HP600DTW Iron Cobra 600

Tama’s Iron Cobra series is perhaps one of the most legendary double bass pedal platforms ever made. A decade or so ago, Iron Cobra was the golden standard with every drummer doing their absolute best to get one of these for themselves. These days the situation hasn’t changed much. There’s a lot more competition out there, but the old Iron Cobra is still holding its ground.

Features and Performance

The 600 series of Iron Cobra (see full specs) are considered to be the entry-level model in the range. With that said, you can expect few limitations in terms of control and overall performance. It’s a well-made piece of kit that features rolling glide cams and great chain drive system. It’s not adjustable in too many ways, but it brings the core of the performance. At the end of the day, this is what matters more than anything else.

With a very smooth action, Tama HP600DTW Iron Cobra 600 comes across as a great choice for there’s no lack of precision. The chain might need some adjustment right out of the box, but you are looking at a great contender in this price range once you sort that out.

MAPEX P500TW 500 Series

Mapex and their double bass pedals are definitely among the most used models on the market. The one we are looking at today is one of their more affordable models. As such, it’s not really capable of competing with the pedals we have listed so far, but it offers a great way for budget users to enter the world of double-bass pedal.

Features and Performance

For a sub $100, this Mapex is definitely one of the best double bass pedal setups you can get. It’s very simple in nature, but it’s built solid. The materials used are great and the action is pretty reliable. Naturally, if you start pushing it hard without proper maintenance, you will find that it’s quite unforgiving.

Performance-wise, you are looking at a pretty decent experience that might take some getting used to. The chain drive system on this pedal is anything but refined. There isn’t that much slack to worry about, but the pedal works with a bit of lag in the initial stages of the pull. Overall, though, this is pretty solid for what you pay for it, and thousands of satisfied customers can’t be wrong.

Conclusion – What Makes the Best Double Bass Pedal?

The pedals we have chosen for this list meet all the criteria we were looking for. They are built solidly, offer a reliable performance within reasonable limits, and are true workhorses. And as always, note that while there are certain objective criteria that make a good pedal—such as sturdiness, build quality and ease of play. This is an instrument, after all, meaning that your personal preferences still play an important role in the mix.

What we wanted to do is give you a choice of models from different price ranges, all of which will get you the performance you need. Hopefully, you found something you like here. Good luck!

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