A type of drum that has no shell. Invented by Remo, Rototoms used a zinc or aluminum frame. The frame could be turned on a threaded shaft to adjust the pitch of the drum up or down. Because they have no shell or resonant head, Rototoms are not as loud as regular drums, and do not have as much sustain.
Most drummers and composers treated Rototoms as pitched tom-toms. They were especially popular in the late 1970s and early 1980s, and continue to be used by some drummers today. Though they were most commonly found in pop and rock drum kits, Rototoms were also used as practice devices for timpani players.