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Which cajon to buy?



As more and more people are aware, the cajon really does have very humble origins… a wooden box which was used to transport goods from one place to another. So why pay for a wooden box?

While a wooden box can actually sound quite nice in the right hands – as can nearly anything (saucepans, wooden spoons, car doors, table tops etc) if you really want an instrument with good tone quality and colour – as with any instrument, you need to choose carefully.

The problem with some of the factory made cajons is that they are often made by people who have no idea what they are trying to produce, and the result is often really just an overpriced wooden box.

As with guitars, there is a huge price and quality range in cajons.

I think that in order to make music and to develop one’s musicality, it’s important to have the basic materials – a cajon which has the capacity to sound beautiful, and the knowledge to help you make it sound beautiful.

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11 Responses to Which cajon to buy?

  1. Sandie long says:

    I would love to buy a cajon for my son for Xmas….he plays some guitar and has a little knowledge of music…what is the best cajon for him?

    • Claudia says:

      Hi Sandie,

      Thanks for your query. Both the Schlagwerk and Requena range are great. If budget allows, I’d recommend either the Requena Series 1(black or red) or Premier, or the Schlagwerk burl or Zebrano. These drums really have the range of a drum kit sound – from bass tones to snare tones (it’s the bass tone that’s harder to get in a cheaper cajon). The main difference between the Schlagwerk and Requena range is that the Schlagwerk cajons tend to have some “snare” sound on the bass tones, whereas the Requena cajons have a drier bass, and the snare sound more distinct.

      Hope that helps? Just let me know if you would like any further information, or would like to have a chat about options etc,

      Thanks Sandie,

      Claudia :)

      • Sandie long says:

        Thanks for replying Claudia I will order a red series 1 Requena and have it shipped to my son in Far Nth Qld….thanks

    • Claudia says:

      Great choice – I’ll pick you out a goodie! When you place the order, you don’t need to add a DVD to the shopping cart. I will add that in to the package as the free Christmas special when I send it up. Any probs or queries, just let me know,

      Thanks Sandie,

      Claudia :)

  2. Jacqui says:

    Hello Claudia,

    Quick question what are the main differences between the Requena series 1 and the Requena premier? I am wanting to purchase for Christmas, but not sure which to choose. I have played the djembe for a while and time for a change. Great article by the way in good weekend



    • Claudia says:

      Hi Jacqui,

      Thanks for the enquiry, and also for the feedback on the GW article. Now re these two models, both are beautiful instruments.
      They both have great bass and good contrast with snare sound. Apart from the very different looks of the cajons, the bass tone on the Premier is that bit richer and slightly less “boomy” than on the Series 1. Hope that helps? Let me know if you have any other queries.

      Claudia :)

  3. Lisa says:

    Thanks for your advice re the right cajon for my 10 year old daughter, Charlotte. The Requena Student was a perfect choice. She is using it as a stool for her bedroom desk which means she frequently plays it spontaneously whilst doing her homework! Your online ordering and delivery systems all worked perfectly. It was a great Xmas surprise for Charlotte and she used it enthusiastically in your recent kids holiday workshop.

  4. Johnny says:

    I am looking for a cajun drum that I can play without using my hands,
    I am learning cigar box guitar and no nothing about drumming,
    Can you recommend one please,,,

  5. Johnny says:

    Hi Claudia,

    Yes, even perhaps with two foot pedals, one for bass sounds
    and one for snare sounds ((( Is this possible??? )))

    • Claudia says:

      Hey Johnny,

      So sorry about taking so long to get back to you…am normally much better…

      ok Schlagwerk has just brought out a foot pedal and beater which is specifically made to use as an extra kick drum sound on the Cajon.
      Info and pics here:

      These are somewhere between Germany and Australia as we speak, and should be here any day, and are available through me (though may be a while before they are on the site as such).

      Another cool foot option to bring in more sounds, more limbs, is Schlagwerk’s Floor Percussion Set. Also available (special order) through the Learn Cajon site.

      In terms of double kick pedals and snare and bass pedals, haven’t come across anything so far…but if you can imagine it, I reckon it either is out there…or will be soon!

      Other thing I thought to mention too is you can always set up your own Cajon kit that suits you. For example, I have a wood block with a pedal, so I can bring that woody sound into my playing with my foot, and I sometimes use a small bass drum (actually I use a floor tom on its side) and high hat, if I want a fuller sound.

      Schlagwerk’s heckstick and side kick is also worth a look:

      as is the Cajon Flap

      Hope that helps – sorry again about the delay, look forward to hearing back

      claudia :)

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