Electronic drums originally started out as simple metronome machines and evolved in the early 1970s into something closer to what they are today. Companies such Roland, Yamaha and Simmons produced the first electronic drum sets. They became popular and commercially successful in the early 1980s as technology and samples became better and more advanced. Electronic drum kits or e-kits have a very similar design to acoustic drum sets. There's a snare, toms, bass drum, cymbals and you play it using drum sticks. However, electronic drums utilize rubber or mesh heads and the cymbals are rubberized pads. The biggest advantage to electronic drums is the amount of drum and percussion sounds you can program, as well as the built-in, complete drum sets.