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The 12 best drumsticks to use in 2024

Drumsticks are an important part of a drummer’s arsenal. Each drummer has their own personal preference of sticks that they prefer to use.

No stick is better than another definitively, it is all a matter of opinion that could be discussed repeatedly.

best drumsticks for beginners and pros

Choosing a stick can be a difficult choice as there are many options to choose from and a list of pros and cons for all of them. The best course of action is to pick what feels best in your hands before looking at any of the specs.

Once you have a set of sticks you enjoy, look at the sticks and see if there are other similarly designed ones. You are bound to constantly be discovering new sticks to enjoy and possibly changing your main set.

As the years go by, companies are constantly innovating and coming up with new designs. Here we will be looking at some of the best drumsticks to try out in 2024.

These are the best drumsticks for 2024:

Vic Firth American Classic 5A

  • 16″ length
  • .565″ diameter
  • Teardrop
  • Hickory
Vic Firth American Classic 5A drumstick (nylon tip)
5A drumstick with nylon tip

These are the classic introduction to drums. They are the happy medium of sticks that are great for beginners to start on.

They provide a great feel to the cymbals with the teardrop tip, and the hickory is great for absorbing shock.

These come with a nylon tip option if you would like slightly longer durability and more defined cymbal sounds.

If you are a brand-new drummer, get your hands on these to get started.

Available at: SweetwaterAmazon

Vic Firth American Classic 5B

  • 16″ length
  • .595 diameter
  • Teardrop
  • Hickory
Vic Firth American Classic 5B drumstick (nylon tip)
5B drumstick with nylon tip

The Vic Firth 5Bs are the second in line to the 5As, they are another classic set of sticks good for a beginner.

The difference here is the thickness of the stick, it is much thicker, only by .03″, but it makes a huge difference.

There is the nylon tip option for this pair.

This stick is much better for orchestral playing, it provides a much larger, thicker sound. Do not be afraid to use these on the kit as well.

Available at: SweetwaterAmazon

ProMark Neil Peart 747

  • 16.25″ length
  • .551″ diameter
  • Oval
  • Shira Koshi oak
ProMark PW747W Neil Peart signature drumstick
Neil Peart signature drumstick

You are getting a stick design from one of the greatest drummers, Neil Peart.

This stick is made of an oak, which is heavier and denser than hickory, providing a longer durability.

An oval tip will provide a darker, warmer sound from the drums.

Lengthwise it is a bit longer than a traditional 5A-classified stick, providing a bit more reach.

The medium taper provides a bit more rebound and balance. These are great sticks for someone looking to try out something unique.

Available at: SweetwaterAmazon

ProMark Hot Rods

  • 16″ length
  • .560″ diameter
  • Birch
ProMark Hot Rod stick
Hot Rod drumstick

These are a great pair for quieter, acoustic settings. Hot Rods were famously used by Dave Grohl during the Nirvana Unplugged MTV concert.

The sound is much lighter than an average stick, with a sloppier sound to them. Real differences can be heard in the cymbals, as the volume is really reduced here.

If you are trying to get a lighter sound potentially in an apartment where you can not practice all the time, try playing with these and seeing if your neighbor can tolerate it.

The Hot Rods are not the only design in this series by ProMark, there are different amounts of rods and thickness to choose from. The Hot Rods are a great pair to start with.

These are the middle ground of brushes and sticks and have a great feel.

Available at: SweetwaterAmazon

ProMark Rebound 5A FireGrain

  • 16″ length
  • .565″ diameter
  • Hickory
  • Acorn
ProMark Rebound 5A FireGrain drumstick
Rebound 5A FireGrain drumstick

FireGrains are a great alternative to the traditional Vic Firth 5As.

First off, they look much more professional which does not affect the sound, but is notable.

There is a bit more weight in the butt of the stick, providing more rebound.

Heat tempered, these sticks are known to have quite the long durability. Due to be being heated, the grain is much tighter together, it makes the stick denser, giving the sticks a bit more punch.

Heavier sounds can be heard on the cymbals but is bearable.

Check out the other sizes of the FireGrain line if you prefer something over 5As, but these are a spectacular pair.

Available at: SweetwaterAmazon

Vater Fatback 3A

  • 16″ length
  • .590″ diameter
  • Hickory
  • Barrel
Vater Fatback 3A drumstick (nylon tip)
Fatback 3A drumstick with nylon tip

Vater sticks are known for exceptional balance, each stick being weighed and matched to its perfect partner.

3A is a thicker stick with a punchier sound.

The barrel tip will act as a hammer hitting the drums and cymbals.

You can get this stick with a nylon tip instead of the wood.

This pair is more so for a heavy hitter, as the weight is shifted towards the front for full attack.

If you are looking for a trustworthy heavy stick, this is the place to look.

Available at: SweetwaterAmazon

Vater Manhattan 7A

  • 16″ length
  • .540″ diameter
  • Hickory
  • Acorn
Vater Manhattan 7A drumstick (nylon tip)
Manhattan 7A drumstick with nylon tip

7As are one of the smallest sticks on the market. You can get smaller, but these are traditionally used as the smaller stick.

The Manhattans are about half an inch longer than the regular 7As but maintain the same diameter.

Nylon tips are an option for this pair if desired.

We chose these over the Vater traditional 7As because if you are going with that size, you are most likely looking for a long, thin stick. Both models do the job, with this one providing just a bit more reach.

Available at: SweetwaterAmazon

Zildjian 5A DIP

  • 16″ length
  • .560″ diameter
  • Hickory
  • Oval
  • Grips
Zildjian 5A DIP drumstick (nylon tip)
5A DIP drumstick with nylon tip

Back at different take on the traditional 5A, Zildjian has put their spin on the style. These sticks are dipped in a special coating on the butt end which enhances the grip.

The stick has a great tone on the drums, the grip coating adds a unique sound to the kit.

You can get this stick with a nylon tip.

Zildjian guarantees that all their sticks are 100% straight, as small fluctuations in the angles of the stick can cause issues with strike point and power behind the stick.

As much as Zildjian is a cymbal company, they also make some killer sticks to add to their success.

Available at: SweetwaterAmazon

Zildjian Travis Barker

  • 16.375″ length
  • .595″ diameter
  • Hickory
  • Round
Zildjian Travis Barker Artist Series drumstick
Travis Barker Artist Series drumstick

Travis Barker is best known for being the drummer of the band Blink-182. Blink is known for being a heavy hitting punk band with ferocious drumming and hooky lyrics.

Barker is a heavy hitting player, and his signature sticks resemble that.

For one, the stick remains thick much closer to the tip of the stick to repel damage, they are a bit longer than a standard 5B, and they have a round trip to aid in heavier hits.

These are coated with a white paint, so there may be some light residue left on the drums and cymbals.

Overall, these are a good pair for powerful, speedy players.

Available at: SweetwaterAmazon

Ahead Lars Ulrich “Scary Guy”

  • 16″ length
  • .595″ diameter
  • Aluminum
  • Oval
Ahead Lars Ulrich
Lars Ulrich signature drumstick “Scary Guy”

The Lars Ulrich Ahead drumsticks have been in the game for quite some time and have always been a hit.

They resemble a 5B-classified stick, with slightly more weight to them.

Ahead makes sticks made of aluminum to provide a much longer durability than traditional sticks, but they do come at a price tag around $30 a pair. This is worth it if you really enjoy using these sticks as they will last a very long time.

You do on occasion have to replace the plastic sleeves and nylon tips.

Ahead also points out their VRS, vibration reduction system, to reduce the shock and provide more rebound.

Aluminum sticks are a great choice if you are consistent drummer and need a pair that will last a while for you.

Available at: SweetwaterAmazon

On-Stage 5A

  • 16″ length
  • .565″ diameter
  • Hickory
  • Oval
On-Stage 5A drumstick (wood tip)
On-Stage 5A drumstick with wood tip

These sticks are a great choice for people on a budget. They cost around $3 a pair, which is very cheap compared to other stick brands. These sticks will be breaking constantly, there is not much durability.

In terms of feel, again, you are getting what you pay for, you can tell the price when playing.

These can come in a nylon tip if preferred.

Overall, these sticks are not the greatest, but we included them here for drummers on a budget who maybe only play every once and a while.

If you are an experienced player, it is worth putting the extra money into a set of sticks.

Available at: SweetwaterAmazon

Vic Firth American Concept Freestyle 5A

  • 17″ length
  • .570″ diameter
  • Hickory
  • Hybrid tip
Vic Firth American Concept Freestyle 5A drumstick
Freestyle 5A drumstick

Freestyle 5As are my personal preference in sticks, they are the perfect balance of weight, thickness, and diameter.

Length wise it is long enough for me to get good reach, as a player I don’t like reaching far for my drums.

Its width is perfect for my hand size, which is sort of small, it gives me good grip.

If anything were to be changed on this stick it would be the weight, it could be a slight bit heavier, but the weight is great as it is.

Overall, these sticks are great for their length and playability.

Available at: SweetwaterAmazon

All in all…

Drumsticks are completely up to personal preference; no stick is the overall greatest for any one player. Each stick has their own set of specific properties that make them good for certain situations.

In all honestly no stick will ever be made the same, despite all technological advancement, every single stick ever made will always be unique with slight differences from the others in its batch.

The sticks on this list are only a guide to some of the most popular sticks used currently, in a few years this list will change with the times as new designs are made that top all the ones listed here.

To get the best stick picking results, grab a practice pad, go to your local music store, and try out all the sticks they have available.

Do not limit yourself to any one brand or size, be diverse to truly understand the vast array of options you have.

If anything will hinder your drumming, it will be getting into a rut, or restricting yourself to something. Always try new things allowing yourself to grow and expand.