Originally Posted by James Lugo
I've turned into one of those crazy forum people who reply to their own posts! :) Ok so we did some recording, the Gretsch was beautiful, the Pearl was horrible. Just to many funky overtones, to hard to deal with in a critical recording situation. So I returned it and went down to a local drum shop and was snooping around, asked the guy about a snare that could kind of round off the studio collection, maybe a maple. He showed me the maple snares, meh. Nothing really grabbed me, then he said everyone's favorite snare drum in the place was a Tama King Beat 5.5x14 steel snare. It was actually set up on a stand, he started to play it, I instantly fell in love. What an awesome snare. $199 with die cast hoops. Took it to the studio and threw it on the stand and started recording. Seriously one of the best snare drums I've ever recorded. Just perfect, even with the old ass head that came with it. We did a few different passes changing up the tension on the interior dampener, ever setting sounded fantastic. Just a great drum.
First of all - hi James, haven't seen you post in quite a while.
Everybody, James is a moderator on another forum, one of the largest (if not THE largest) pro audio forums on the planet.
Those lamenting the 'untimely exit' of member audiotech here would be wise to check out James' links and also go over to Gearslutz for some really good recording info and general knowledge. Hope I'm not making you uncomfortable James :)
Now for the snare...glad you found a snare that is working for you; it seems that Tama doesn't make a bad snare; at least I've never heard a bad one.
One thing to watch out for, and might explain the unfavourable experience you had with the Pearl snare : you must CRANK the snare side (resonant) head on any snare drum to get it to sound decent. Tune it up like a timbale...then higher...then even more. You should be a little worried about it....then you're in the ballpark. I find this especially true of deeper maple drums. If the resonant head is at medium tension, or close to the batter head, you can pretty much guarantee it will sound boxy and 'bonky' , it will feel rubbery and exhibit all kinds of weird overtones when trying to record it.
You may also find that tuning the resonant heads on ALL drums to yield better results; at least try this if you haven't already. Not nearly as high as the snare reso though, try about a third higher than the batter.
It is quite possible that the used Tama you bought had a properly tensioned (very tight) resonant head. As many members here will tell you , heads and tuning come before shell material and construction....