Top 10 Cajon Drum Boxes Reviewed

cajon drum reviewsWhile a full drum kit is great at setting the beat, one obvious drawback is that they are not terribly portable.

If you are looking for an easy way to take percussion with you – and to add a distinctive drum sound to any acoustic set – then you can’t beat a great cajon drum.

The cajon – or box drum as some people call them – is a great example of an improvised instrument that worked so well that artists developed them into a new class. Originally just a box or crate pressed into service, today’s professionally made cajons feature exotic woods and internal guitar strings to add different tones and a snare effect.

Of course, as these instruments gained popularity more and more manufacturers started building their own models. To help you cut through all the noise, we reviewed the top 25 cajons on the market.

Best Cajons

There are a variety of different cajons made in different sizes and with different materials. Sorting through it all can be a chore, so to help you out here are our picks for the best cajons for your money:

1. Meinl Jumbo Bass Subwoofer Cajon with Internal Snares

Meinl Jumbo Bass Subwoofer Cajon with Internal Snares review This cajon sounds great! The kick and snare sound excellent and create dynamic sounds that change due to where and how you hit the instrument. The sound holes in the front fill a room much better than the traditional rear hole design. The range of sound is remarkable, and the bass, snare, tom, and high hat sounds it produces are very distinct.

The handle in the back makes for easy carrying, and the construction is solid. The top of this cajon features a large non-slip surface that is comfortable to sit on and provides ample play area for any size drummer. The oversized construction of this cajon makes it much easier to sit on for longer periods of time.

Meinl Jumbo Bass Subwoofer Cajon with Internal Snares - NOT MADE IN CHINA - Walnut Playing Surface, 2-YEAR WARRANTY (SUBCAJ5WN)
177 Reviews
Meinl Jumbo Bass Subwoofer Cajon with Internal Snares - NOT MADE IN CHINA - Walnut Playing Surface, 2-YEAR WARRANTY (SUBCAJ5WN)
  • Our biggest and bassiest cajon — with a low end punch that you will feel as soon as you start playing, the Meinl Jumbo Subwoofer Cajon is mammoth in size and sound — the extra wide body with internal bass reflex allows for superb low note development
  • Forward-facing ports with internal bass reflex — an internal reflex channel directs sound waves and air out through forward-facing ports to create a bass note that feels like a perfectly tuned kick drum — the tone will completely surround you as you play
  • Internal fixed sets of snares — three sets of internal fixed snare wires are positioned against the playing surface to add the dimension of a crisp snare drum sound — get a cutting backbeat snare tone by playing near the top corners of the playing surface
  • Walnut playing surface and MDF body — the walnut playing surface is ultra-sensitive to soft finger rolls and packs a punch at a louder volume — the sturdy MDF body with thick rubber feet resonates fully, giving you maximum projection and superb tone
  • Use indoors or outside — this cajon is an outstanding percussion piece for settings like open mic nights, coffeehouse gigs, outdoor jam sessions or houses of worship — it may also be used with a microphone to fill large spaces with percussive sound

2. Roland ELCajon Electronic Layered Cajon

Roland ELCajon Electronic Layered Cajon reviewThe sound of this cajon is very clear with a snare that is tight and snappy, and the bass has a nice deep tone. It can be plugged in to add electric variations to the player’s abilities, or this feature can be turned off for a more traditional acoustic sound. Plus, the velocity sensitivity is completely adjustable. The limitations of this cajon are really nonexistent.

The craftsmanship of this cajon is excellent with a piano-like semi-matte black finish and natural wood face. So, not only does it sound good, it looks good. This cajon is solidly built to take a beating and is super fun to play.

Roland EC-10 ELCajon Electronic Layered Cajon
30 Reviews
Roland EC-10 ELCajon Electronic Layered Cajon
  • Unique hybrid instrument combining an authentic acoustic Cajon with Roland’s electronic percussion technology
  • Standard Cajon size (50 x 30 x 30 cm), with quality playing surface made of sapele wood
  • Runs on AC power (cable included) or up to 12 hours of continuous playing time with six AA-size batteries
  • 30 built-in electronic kits for layering with acoustic Cajon sounds
  • Each kit includes two independent sounds that can be triggered from the head and edge of the playing surface

3. Meinl Cajon Box Drum with Internal Snares Baltic Birch Wood

Meinl Cajon Box Drum with Internal Snares Baltic Birch Wood reviewThis cajon has a resonating crisp, clean sound that is perfect for any venue. It produces decently loud sound but is not overpowering. It is comfortable to sit on and has plenty of good angles to strike the surface from. It produces good, crisp snare echoes with a solid bass, and you can hit the instrument anywhere to produce a myriad of sounds.

It is made of excellent craftsmanship and features a solid design so any sized player can sit and play this cajon comfortably. It is a bit smaller than comparable cajons, but much more portable and perfect for jam sessions. It just looks beautiful, sounds impressive, and plays perfectly.

Meinl Cajon Box Drum with Internal Snares — MADE IN EUROPE — Baltic Birch Wood Compact Size, 2-YEAR WARRANTY, JC50LBNT
560 Reviews
Meinl Cajon Box Drum with Internal Snares — MADE IN EUROPE — Baltic Birch Wood Compact Size, 2-YEAR WARRANTY, JC50LBNT
  • Create drum set grooves with bass and snare notes using your hands — the wood playing surface has two zones for bass and snare — play with your hands toward the center for deep bass or strike near the top corners with your fingers for crisp snare sounds
  • Perfect for acoustic shows and jam sessions — the birch jam cajon is the perfect grab-and-go percussion instrument for singers/songwriter circles, spontaneous jam sessions, accompanying guitarists and supporting acoustic bands in coffee house settings
  • Internal snares — dual sets of internal fixed snare wires are positioned against the inside of the playing surface to give you the same effect as a snare drum — these snare wires are held in place with a thin mesh strap that leaves the tone unaltered
  • Made in Europe (light brown finish) — constructed with 100% Baltic birch wood, a wood type commonly found in high end drum set construction for its superb natural acoustic qualities that give you plenty of definition with deep bass and cutting high tones
  • Compact size — measuring 10 1/4" wide x 15" tall x 10 1/4" deep, the jam cajon is compact for easy transport and straightforward use so that anyone can sit down and play this instrument, regardless of skill level or age

4. Pyle String Cajon – Wooden Percussion Box, with Internal Guitar Strings, Full Size

Pyle String Cajon - Wooden Percussion Box, with Internal Guitar Strings, Full Size reviewThe bass sound this cajon produces is deeply solid! The snare sounds created by the internal strings are very good, but the best advantage to this cajon is that the snare wires are adjustable, and it even comes with the wrench to do so. There are so many ways to tune this cajon to your preferences, including loosening or tightening the screws on the front of the box to vary the sounds and tones when slapping the instrument and its corners.

The box is sturdy and has quality, large rubber feet that provide a very stable hold while playing. The fit and finish are excellent, with nicely rounded edges and a sound hole in the back. This cajon features a comfortable height for sitting and playing that anyone can enjoy, and its weight and size make it easily portable.

Pyle String Cajon - Wooden Percussion Box, with Internal Guitar Strings, Full Size
771 Reviews
Pyle String Cajon - Wooden Percussion Box, with Internal Guitar Strings, Full Size
  • PERFECT HANDCRAFT : Introducing Pyle string Jam Cajon, a perfect musical instrument that brings more life into your music An amazing hand crafted wooden panel box frame built in classic /traditional instrument style
  • ADJUSTABLE GUITAR STRINGS : Pyle string Jam Cajon is exquisitely engineered to allow musicians to totally express themselves, it features internal Adjustable guitar strings which provides a smooth rhythmic sound production for a better musical experience Strings can be tuned from the bottom of the cajon (hex key included inside)
  • COMPACT AND LIGHTWEIGHT : Comes in a compact size (LxWxH) : 12.0" x12.0" x18.0" and weighs only 10.9 pounds Very light and easy to carry about unlike other heavy and bulky brands of stringed Jam Cajon
  • ANTI-VIBRATION INTERFERENCE : Pyle wooden Cajon percussion box features a rubber- capped feet in order to prevent any possibility of vibration interference and encourage original crystal clear acoustic sound productio
  • BUY WITH PEACE OF MIND : Pyle cajon is backed by 1 year warranty We urge you to purchase with an absolute confidence that your satisfaction is guaranteed

5. Meinl Cajon Box Drum with Internal Metal Strings for Adjustable Snare Effect

Meinl Cajon Box Drum with Internal Metal Strings for Adjustable Snare Effect reviewThe volume of sound this cajon creates is very pleasant. The player can create several tones from striking the front panel and several other tones can be achieved from slapping the sides of the box. This cajon offers an interesting variety of percussive tones to explore, with a steady, even bass and crisp, gentle snare. The snare is adjustable, and the included tool is stored right inside the box.

The top seating surface is coated with a gritted non-slip sealer that adds just the right amount of non-slip without being too rough. This cajon is thoughtfully well-built. It is made out of durable, clean, and undecorated materials, and is comfortable to sit on and play for any body type.

Meinl Cajon Box Drum, Full Size with Internal Metal Strings for Adjustable Snare Effect, Birch Wood, HCAJ1NT
803 Reviews
Meinl Cajon Box Drum, Full Size with Internal Metal Strings for Adjustable Snare Effect, Birch Wood, HCAJ1NT
  • Create drum set grooves with bass and snare notes using your hands — the wood playing surface has two zones for bass and snare — play with your hands toward the center for deep bass or strike near the top corners with your fingers for crisp snare sounds
  • Perfect for live acoustic music — the Meinl Headliner String cajon is made for settings like acoustic coffee house sets, open mic nights, houses of worship and spontaneous jam sessions — this cajon also performs well with a microphone in larger venues
  • Adjustable steel cajon strings for snare effect — spanning against the inside of the playing surface are micro-coiled steel cajon strings that deliver a crisp snare sound — string tension is adjustable for tight or loose snare sounds (hex wrench included)
  • Hardwood body and playing surface — the hardwood playing surface dishes out cutting slap tones, deep bass and soft finger rolls while the hardwood body with thick rubber feet acts as the resonating chamber to project your beats, unplugged or with a mic
  • Rear port for enhanced tone and microphone placement — a sound port is cut into the back of the cajon to allow air to escape as you play, which results in enhanced tone and feel — this is an ideal spot to place a microphone when amplification is needed

6. Sawtooth ST-CJ120B Cajon Birch Wood with Padded Seat Cushion and Carry Bag

Sawtooth ST-CJ120B Cajon Birch Wood with Padded Seat Cushion and Carry Bag reviewThis cajon sounds great and is very easy to fine tune. You can effortlessly adjust the snare system using the included tool stored in the box. The tone it produces is unique, with great mids and highs coming from the nice, solid birchwood. To lower the tone of this instrument, partially cover the sound hole in the back. The slap sound and playability are excellent!

The edges of the box are beautifully sanded and finished, and the instrument is clearly made using the finest craftsmanship. Sawtooth even includes a carrying bag and high-density foam pad to sit on, plus the tone hole is reinforced so that you can also use it as a carrying handle.

Sawtooth ST-CJ120B Cajon Birch Wood with Padded Seat Cushion and Carry Bag
296 Reviews
Sawtooth ST-CJ120B Cajon Birch Wood with Padded Seat Cushion and Carry Bag
  • Birch Wood Cajon
  • Adjustable Internal Snare Wire System and Adjustable Front Plate for Desired Sound
  • Durable Rubber Base Feet
  • Includes Padded Seat Cushion for added comfort and Cajon Carry Bag for easy transport

7. Meinl Cajon Box Drum with Internal Snares and FREE Bag

Meinl Cajon Box Drum with Internal Snares and FREE Bag reviewThe wine red finish is so sharp! Lightweight, sturdy construction allows this cajon to be moved easily about and produces a very rich sound which fills an entire room. Little force is needed to create a deep, loud bass. The snare is clear but not over the top, to clearly punctuate the feel you desire.

This cajon is well constructed, has soft, rounded edges, and rubber feet on the bottom. It is extremely stable and very comfortable to sit on. The included carrying case is incredibly useful for transporting the instrument and is made of rugged material to protect it from the elements.

Meinl Cajon Box Drum with Internal Snares and FREE Bag - MADE IN EUROPE - Baltic Birch Wood Full Size, 2-YEAR WARRANTY (BC1NTWR)
1,071 Reviews
Meinl Cajon Box Drum with Internal Snares and FREE Bag - MADE IN EUROPE - Baltic Birch Wood Full Size, 2-YEAR WARRANTY (BC1NTWR)
  • Perfect for acoustic shows and jam sessions — the birch cafe Cajon is the perfect grab-and-go percussion instrument for singers/songwriter circles, spontaneous jam sessions, accompanying guitarists and supporting acoustic bands in coffee house settings
  • Internal snares — dual sets of internal fixed snare wires are positioned against the inside of the playing surface to give you the same effect as a snare drum — the snare wires are held in place with a thin mesh strap that leaves the tone unaltered
  • Includes free Cajon bag — included free with this Cajon is a standard Cajon gig bag, which is made with heavy duty nylon and features a strong carrying grip — perfect for travel and storage
  • Made in Europe (wine red finish) — constructed with 100% Baltic birch wood, a wood type commonly found in high end drum set construction for its superb natural acoustic qualities that give you plenty of definition with deep bass and cutting high tones
  • Full size — measuring 12" wide x 17. 25" tall x 12" deep, anyone can sit down and play this instrument, from adults to young musicians, regardless of skill level

8. Pyle Jam Wooden Cajon Percussion Box, with Internal Guitar Strings (PCJD15)

Pyle Jam Wooden Cajon Percussion Box, with Internal Guitar Strings (PCJD15) reviewThis is such a beautifully crafted instrument! As part of the setup, the player needs to adjust the cajon to a lower string pressure with the included tool stowed right in the box, but Pyle Jam’s website includes several videos that clearly outline how to first tune the instrument properly.

The cajon is of high quality construction and can support many different sized players. It produces a variety of percussion sounds and tones based on where you tap the face or sides. It has plenty of bass, but not so much that it overpowers the other tones, and the snare is super crisp.

Pyle Stringed Jam Cajon - Wooden Cajon Percussion Box. (PCJD15)
272 Reviews
Pyle Stringed Jam Cajon - Wooden Cajon Percussion Box. (PCJD15)
  • Compact and Lightweight: Pyle Stringed Jam Cajon is a super compact hand-crafted wooden panel box frame. Designed to be easily carried to musical circles, Jam sessions, and so on. An ideal instrument for singers /song writers for trying out new beats.
  • Rhythmic Sound Production: This perfectly engineered stringed jam Cajon features internal guitar strings, these strings are there to deliver pleasant rhythmic sound production for great listening pleasure of the audience.
  • Anti-Vibration Interference: Pyle wooden Cajon percussion box features a rubber- capped feet in order to prevent any possibility of vibration interference and encourage original crystal clear acoustic sound production.
  • Musical Fun for All Ages: Fun packed musical instrument for all your age groups for various musical circles and jam sessions as well as for supporting acoustic bands.
  • Buy With Peace of Mind: This musical instrument of total size (L xW xH): 12.0"x12.0"x15.0" and weighs just 10.2 lbs is backed by 1 year warranty. We urge you to purchase with an absolute confidence that your satisfaction is guaranteed.

9. Meinl Slaptop Cajon Box Drum with Internal Snares and Forward Projecting Sound Ports

Meinl Slaptop Cajon Box Drum with Internal Snares and Forward Projecting Sound Ports reviewThis is the perfect instrument for accompanying any group’s wide array of tunes. It has fuller deep tones and highs, and the multiple forward-facing vent holes and bottom slot on the front of this cajon’s slap top really make a difference. The snare sound highs are crisp and clear, while the lows are deep and resounding. The various surfaces of the box are very responsive.

This cajon will add a needed level of expression and tone that you just can’t get with any other. The construction quality is strong, and it is more ergonomically friendly than other cajons since you play it while it rests in your lap. Thus, these types of cajons are also known as laptops. Many musicians find these types of cajons to be more comfortable than playing in a bent over position normally associated with a traditional cajon.

Meinl Slaptop Cajon Box Drum with Internal Snares and Forward Projecting Sound Ports - NOT MADE IN CHINA - Walnut Playing Surface, 2-YEAR WARRANTY (TOPCAJ2WN)
157 Reviews
Meinl Slaptop Cajon Box Drum with Internal Snares and Forward Projecting Sound Ports - NOT MADE IN CHINA - Walnut Playing Surface, 2-YEAR WARRANTY (TOPCAJ2WN)
  • A compact drum set for any setting — support any style of music in a live or studio setting with bass and snare drum sounds that simulate a drum set—ideal for acoustic music, worship bands, jam sessions or recording studios
  • Bass and snare — dual internal fixed snares (the same type found on snare drums) are positioned on both sides of the playing surface give you a crisp snare effect — strike toward the center of the playing surface for low bass notes
  • Upright playing position — the unique T-shape design of the Meinl Turbo Slaptop Cajon allows players to sit up naturally with the playing surface in their lap—this is an easy and fun percussion instrument that anyone can play, regardless of skill level
  • Walnut surface with durable MDF body — the smooth walnut playing surface is thin enough to respond beautifully to any dynamic with your hands or brushes while being durable for upbeat rhythms—the MDF body develops your notes into a rich tone
  • Forward facing sound ports — there are three forward-facing sound ports that project your rhythms to your audience while enveloping you in a healthy dose of sound—a large port on the bottom develops your bass while two smaller ports on top project snare

10. Moukey Full Size Cajon Drum DCD-1 Wooden Drum Box

Moukey Full Size Cajon Drum DCD-1 Wooden Drum Box reviewThe box’s fit and finish are really nice, and the rubber feet on the bottom make it super sturdy when sat upon. The included carrying case has a handle and backpack straps, and a super roomy zip pouch on the front.

The sound hole on the back delivers substantial bass. You can tune the cajon using the included Allen key to create sharper, crisper tones or deeper sounds. It is a little wider than other cajons, and this makes it perfect for any size body type to play. Because of this, it produces a nice, loud sound with deep bass and sharp treble at the top.

Moukey Full Size Cajon Drum DCD-1 Wooden Drum Box Birchwood Percussion Internal Metal Strings with Bag
55 Reviews
Moukey Full Size Cajon Drum DCD-1 Wooden Drum Box Birchwood Percussion Internal Metal Strings with Bag
  • Perfect Handcraft: An amazing hand crafted wooden panel box frame built in classic instrument style.An ideal instrument for singers /song writers for trying out new beats.
  • Pleasant Rhythmic Sound: This perfectly engineered stringed Cajon features internal guitar strings, these strings are there to deliver pleasant rhythmic sound production for great listening pleasure of the audience.
  • Anti-Vibration Interference: The cajon percussion box features a rubber-capped feet in order to prevent any possibility of vibration interference and encourage original crystal clear acoustic sound production.
  • Come with Cajon Gig Bag: Included with the high quality cajon gig bag that is made with heavy duty nylon to ensure safe transportation and storage of your cajon.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guaranteed - All Moukey products are built to last. We provide 1 year manufacturer’s warranty and world class customer service, you can rest assured to buy our products.

How To Play The Cajon

If you are a drummer who has never played a cajon box drum before, here is a great first lesson video from YouTube: