Alesis DM Lite Electronic Drum Kit Review: Too Lite or Just Right?

Would you like a little extra glitz to go with your drumming? If so, the Alesis DM Lite electronic drum kit may be just what you need.

Quick to setup and compact in size, the Alesis DM Lite has light-up LED drum and cymbal pads that produce a blue mini light show around the rims when hit.

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What Do You Get with the Alesis DM Lite Set?

Overall, there’s not much difference between the Alesis DM Lite and other Alesis kits. The pads are different sizes, and they light up. That’s true. There is a different number of preset kits and sounds in the sound module.

But the rest is basically the same.

With one big exception.

You don’t have to put this kit together yourself. It comes pre-assembled from the factory. All you have to do is unfold it, possibly make a few height adjustments, plug it in, turn it on, and play.

There’s no messing around with putting the frame together, making sure all the cables are lined up right, or locating each pad in its proper position.

According to Alesis, “The wiring snake connects all of the pads, cymbals, and pedals to the DM Lite module with one single, convenient connection.”

I think this means you have to plug the cable(s) in yourself, but that’s not a big deal.

The 4 drum pads – snare and 3 toms – are on the small side. They each measure 7.5 inches in diameter.

The 3 cymbals – hi-hat, crash, and ride – would be 10 inches in diameter if they were full circles. Instead, they are more triangular shaped.

You get 2 pedals – hi-hat and kick drum – with the DM Lite. The hi-hat pedal is momentary control style. Alesis advertises the kick drum pedal as being dynamic. That is, if you kick harder, it makes a louder sound. I think most kits are like this, so I don’t see that this is anything special here.

Here’s a nice demo from GAK (in the UK). You get to see the glitz in the dark.

What’s Inside the DM Lite Sound Module?

The DM Lite sound module comes with 200-plus sounds. It uses those to make 10 preset kits, and you can add more of your own if those aren’t enough.

There is a training / coaching feature, 30 tracks you can play along with, as well as the standard metronome.

You can also connect to other MIDI devices and to computer and MP3 devices using the MIDI, USB, and other ports provided.

As usual, you can use headphones or connect to an amp and speakers.

Alesis includes a pair of drumsticks in all of their kits. If you’re a beginner, these may be good enough for now. You might want to upgrade to a better pair later.

Finally, you get all the necessary assembly, user, safety, and warranty manuals.

What’s the Verdict on the Alesis DM Lite?

The reviews on the DM Lite are a mixed bag. There are many positives, but there are also many negatives.

One thing that you will like is the easy setup. However, according to one owner…

“To get it back to that [folded] state from being playable takes about 20 minutes.”

If you really need to get it back into the box in its original state, it will take some effort. Then again, you probably will never need to do that. If you plan to transport it somewhere, you’ll just fold it up as best you can, load it into your vehicle, and roll on down the road.

The sounds that the DM Lite produces are decent for an electronic drum set in its price range. Here’s a comparison one user has made.

“Alesis sound module may not be up to Roland (it also cost half the price of the Roland kit), but it beats Simmons and D-Drums products in this price range.”

You can read more about the ddrums sets here.

So as long as you’re not expecting top of the line (after all, this is called a Lite set), you may well be satisfied with purchasing the Alesis DM Lite.

Alesis DM Lite

Check the pricing and availability of the Alesis DM Lite drum set at Amazon.

Alesis DM Lite Drum Kit

Check the pricing and availability of the Alesis DM Lite drum kit at Ebay.

If you think the DM Lite isn’t what you are looking for, check out the overview of other Alesis electronic drum sets to find one more suitable to your needs and tastes.

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Gary Sonnenberg
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