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  #41  
Old 09-21-2013, 04:52 PM
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Default Re: Are Ludwig Supraphonics really that good a snare

Going back to the OP's OP, I played a 400 for the first time last year (after nearly 25 years of drumming) and was also a little disappointed. I then played a 402 and was blown away. I guess that when some of us think of the quintessential Supra Sound it depends on whether one is into deeper or shallower snares per se.

In the end I bought myself one of the reissue 405s (Acro) and couldn't be happier. I wouldn't have said it was a "Budweiser" snare - more of a Jack Daniels snare. I think the reason I like it so much is that it's nice, but not too nice: I've had high end snares that I've been too worried about in terms of taking them out gigging etc, but for me this is a real workhorse snare. It also helps that I think it sounds magic.
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  #42  
Old 09-21-2013, 06:34 PM
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Default Re: Are Ludwig Supraphonics really that good a snare

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Originally Posted by Captain Bash View Post
Ohhh come on now. This was a mildly provocative post but I certainly never set out to offend anyone, just my own thoughts to the community. Actually if you look at the responses some like others don't, that's fair enough. But please don't discount my opinions. I never mentioned 'best' in the original post.
Sorry there Captain, but I was not referring to you at all bro'! Got me wrong. Its a good discussion. My post referred to one above me, who referred to the Supra as a 'Budweiser' (they they ARE both made of Aluminum alloy)
Its all good.
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  #43  
Old 09-21-2013, 06:51 PM
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Default Re: Are Ludwig Supraphonics really that good a snare

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Originally Posted by The Old Hyde View Post
Will you get a supralite already!!! I got mine because of a discussion with you and I thank you for the advice on it.
I know, I know :-) I was actually gonna make the move yesterday, but they didn't have the 6.5.
I have the dough, and have store credit for something I took back (good item, just won't use it like I thought), but they didn't have the drum.
I was saying "why not?..." after thinking about it (after the other post), but it wasn't there.
They've sold A LOT of the Supralites in all sizes. Quite a few of the 15's, from what I remember them saying some months back. It was a hit as soon as it hit the shelves.

I like the sound of it more than a 402 actually (probably said that before too :-) ).
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  #44  
Old 09-21-2013, 07:45 PM
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Default Re: Are Ludwig Supraphonics really that good a snare

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Originally Posted by The Old Hyde View Post
Bermuda and Larry, have either of you tries the 6.5 supralite? I know its not the same alloy, its steel, but I think its a very close representation at a crazy low price.
No I haven't seen one in my travels yet Mr. Hyde. (No more Jekyll lol?) But I will certainly check it out. I can't recall the last time I played on a steel shelled snare drum. The fact that they are flying off the shelves speaks volumes. I don't think Ludwig can say that about their Epic "Brick" snare. So it sounds like they really got something here. And I like overtones, gimme all you got, so steel probably has a lot. That's why I don't gravitate towards the Supra and it's also exactly why it's so popular with recording guys and a great number of drummers. The Supra is the ultimate pop drum. Take that however you like.

The Supra is as classic Americana as it gets, like Harley Davidson and Levis blue jeans. It's a part of the culture, and it's tone has influenced the entire baby boom generation and beyond. Who else can say that?

So the short answer to the thread question is yea it really is that good of a snare. But it's cool if it's not your cup of tea.
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  #45  
Old 09-21-2013, 10:16 PM
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Default Re: Are Ludwig Supraphonics really that good a snare

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Originally Posted by KarlCrafton View Post
Les has talked about "cheap pot metal", and things breaking in the past (not just with Ludwig to be fair), but to this day, I have yet to have anything break, or a lug come apart. What gives? I take care of my stuff, but I hardly "baby" it either.


Compared to a SOLID GMS or Ayotte lug, that's apples and oranges.
If the lugs on a Ludwig were solid, then the sound would change--and I don't think anyone would debate that.

Personally, I don't think the parts used on Ludwig snares are "cheap". They aren't as fancy, or thick or whatever like a Trick throw or something, but, I don't care for Trick throws. They work smoothly, but they have no style, and are a giant hunk of metal stuck on a snare to me.


Pot metal lugs/strainers are seen as cheap by comparison.

You won't find pot metal lugs on a true, well built, snare drum. Now if you throw 'versatility' into the equation, pot metal won't hold up to prolonged stress of hi tunings as well as a machined lug. Pot metal lug post are prone to breaking under certain situations. Not a problem for most, but again add versatility in the equation and people are going to have broken lugs, with pot metal ones being the most prone.

So say a snare drum is dominant on the market and it happens to be the LUDWIG 400/402 and I want to build a better drum, I use machined lugs and strainer, not really much else to improve on. 'Better' in the sense that for years and years to come my snare's constructional integrity would be bullet proof by comparison.
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  #46  
Old 09-21-2013, 10:41 PM
tamadrm tamadrm is offline
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Default Re: Are Ludwig Supraphonics really that good a snare

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Originally Posted by Les Ismore View Post
If they sounded different its not b/c of the 402's construction/edge profile and to a lesser degree heads/tuning, it would most likely be b/c of recording technique.

To make it easier to understand, If all things were equal, recording, heads, drummer (we'll use Bonham as mythical demonstration example)...

If Bonham were demoing four different 6.5 metal snare drums under the same recording conditions, one of them being a 402, blind sound test, just say "Look, we'll play you 4 examples, tell us which one is the LUDWIG" wouldn't even have to name the other 3, nine out of ten drummers would be able to pick out the LUDWIG example no problem.

The 400/402 are easily the worlds most recognizable metal snare drum sounds. No more versatile than a PEARL SENSITONE, or 50 other steel snares out there.

People shell out the $ for a LUDWIG 400/402 b/c they want that sound, not b/c they want versatility, you can get versatility for a lot less money. They're not putting up the cash for the cheap pot metal lugs and strainer(s) LUDWIG put on those drums. As an example one would put out $ for the materials and workmanship for something like a GMS, or AYOTTE first, LUDWIG 400/402 its sound first, then just reconcile to live with the cheap materials.

The mystique is you really have to own a 400/402 to realize this, once you do and accept the reality its easy to play something else and be happy for less money.
I completely disargee.Tuning,stick choice,where you hit the drum and touch all play LARGELY into it's sound.

That's pretty easy to understand

Steve B
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  #47  
Old 09-22-2013, 04:16 AM
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Default Re: Are Ludwig Supraphonics really that good a snare

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Originally Posted by Bad Tempered Clavier View Post
Going back to the OP's OP, I played a 400 for the first time last year (after nearly 25 years of drumming) and was also a little disappointed. I then played a 402 and was blown away. I guess that when some of us think of the quintessential Supra Sound it depends on whether one is into deeper or shallower snares per se.

In the end I bought myself one of the reissue 405s (Acro) and couldn't be happier. I wouldn't have said it was a "Budweiser" snare - more of a Jack Daniels snare. I think the reason I like it so much is that it's nice, but not too nice: I've had high end snares that I've been too worried about in terms of taking them out gigging etc, but for me this is a real workhorse snare. It also helps that I think it sounds magic.
Interesting. What played into the decision to buy the 405? Did you want a brand new drum, rather than a used 402? Or was there some other factor that drove your decision?
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  #48  
Old 09-23-2013, 12:05 AM
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Default Re: Are Ludwig Supraphonics really that good a snare

I swapped out the stock snare wired and resonant head in my Ludwig 402 last night before a show. I threw on some Pure Sound Custom 20s and a Remo Ambassador resonant head. It sounded great at the gig. It cut through the din easily and sounded good doing it.

Is it common to have the end if the wires not fully soldered over, leaving the ends off the wires exposed? I am sure is not that big of a deal, but I could also see that possibly puncturing the head at some point.
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  #49  
Old 09-23-2013, 10:33 AM
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Default Re: Are Ludwig Supraphonics really that good a snare

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Originally Posted by BGH View Post
Interesting. What played into the decision to buy the 405? Did you want a brand new drum, rather than a used 402? Or was there some other factor that drove your decision?
At the time, used 402s were thin on the ground in my neck of the woods. Unfortunately, in the UK, Ludwigs in general are (in my experience) nowhere near as prevalent as the other big brands these days. As I was looking at buying something on spec over the internet I decided to go for a brand new 405 having heard about the 2012 reissue snares from Ludwig on this forum.

I had already played some vintage 404s (Acros) and actually preferred those to the 400 and noticed that the 405 is a 10 lug snare, as opposed to the 404 which has 8. This pretty much convinced me that, apart from different style lugs and the extra chrome, the 405 is (in my mind) near-as-dammit the same as a 402 for a lot less money* - especially when purchased from a US retailer. I had looked for a used 405 over here but they're like Hen's Teeth compared to the other Ludwig snares.

So one year on and despite the idiosyncrasies that Ludwig is now (in)famous for it's going strong. All I've changed on it is the batter head (swapped out for a coated Emperor) and it plays like a dream: I've even stopped caring about the p85.

*EDIT - Obviously, this only applies to the aluminium shells
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  #50  
Old 09-23-2013, 04:07 PM
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Default Re: Are Ludwig Supraphonics really that good a snare

How did I miss that thread??
I love my 6,5 Acro too. It's a great sounding drum.
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  #51  
Old 09-24-2013, 03:55 AM
mandrew mandrew is offline
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Default Re: Are Ludwig Supraphonics really that good a snare

The P-85 isn't all that bad if you care for it, and most drummers don't maintain them properly. A drop or two of light oil will keep it working smoothly. I like P-86s for their looks, and they work well too.
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  #52  
Old 09-24-2013, 03:00 PM
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Default Re: Are Ludwig Supraphonics really that good a snare

Quote:
Originally Posted by larryace View Post
No I haven't seen one in my travels yet Mr. Hyde. (No more Jekyll lol?) But I will certainly check it out. I can't recall the last time I played on a steel shelled snare drum. The fact that they are flying off the shelves speaks volumes. I don't think Ludwig can say that about their Epic "Brick" snare. So it sounds like they really got something here. And I like overtones, gimme all you got, so steel probably has a lot. That's why I don't gravitate towards the Supra and it's also exactly why it's so popular with recording guys and a great number of drummers. The Supra is the ultimate pop drum. Take that however you like.

The Supra is as classic Americana as it gets, like Harley Davidson and Levis blue jeans. It's a part of the culture, and it's tone has influenced the entire baby boom generation and beyond. Who else can say that?

So the short answer to the thread question is yea it really is that good of a snare. But it's cool if it's not your cup of tea.
Hey Larry, my 402 is real ringy and resonant. So much that I have to engage the internal muffler, which at the same time gives me a fatter sound with tone. The trick for me was to put a thicker emperor weight snare side head on the reso, and an Aquarian hi-velocity on the batter (which is like a coated emperor with a reverse dot, but sounds way better). When I first got my 402, it had a regular ambassador snare side, and coated ambassador batter- sounded thin, and too dry with not much body/volume. My current head combo really opened up/fattened the sound, yet it's still the most sensitive drum I have, and yields a great rim shot.
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  #53  
Old 09-24-2013, 03:26 PM
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KarlCrafton KarlCrafton is offline
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Default Re: Are Ludwig Supraphonics really that good a snare

The 402 sounds real cool with the Aquarian HiEnergy batter head too.
I've never tried the Hi Velocity head.
Steve Riley of LA Guns sometimes uses one of my kits when they are in Detroit, and he has a HE on his 402.
That head has always been sensitive and a cool sounding head. You wouldn't think so with that Power Dot material across the whole head, and then a regular Power Dot on top of it .

An Emp snare side will fatten up any snares sound.
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  #54  
Old 09-24-2013, 09:05 PM
Captain Bash Captain Bash is offline
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Default Re: Are Ludwig Supraphonics really that good a snare

It's obvious I am in the minority in thinking these snares are way overrated, just to back up my original post I have now sold my supra 400 and reinvested the money in a bosphorus pang thang !

I should have said in the first post that my goto drums are:

Brady block 14 x 7 just a great great rock drum under especially under the mic
Ultracast 14 x 5 ish (for pub gigs its the dogs) sounds ace tuned down
Ayotte Kep 13 x 6 this drum will cut you up, great for anything out there
Pearl Omar hakim 13 x 4 mahogony really good for soul or funk at medium volumes

I guess I am not into vintage.......
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  #55  
Old 09-24-2013, 10:45 PM
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Default Re: Are Ludwig Supraphonics really that good a snare

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Originally Posted by Captain Bash View Post
It's obvious I am in the minority in thinking these snares are way overrated, just to back up my original post I have now sold my supra 400 and reinvested the money in a bosphorus pang thang !

I should have said in the first post that my goto drums are:

Brady block 14 x 7 just a great great rock drum under especially under the mic
Ultracast 14 x 5 ish (for pub gigs its the dogs) sounds ace tuned down
Ayotte Kep 13 x 6 this drum will cut you up, great for anything out there
Pearl Omar hakim 13 x 4 mahogony really good for soul or funk at medium volumes

I guess I am not into vintage.......
I hope you dig your Bosphorus cymbal. Life its too short to not have some things you enjoy.

I wouldn't categorize my 402 as a "vintage sound". I might think it is a bit more "classic" than "vintage". I think people categorize it in a vintage respect because it has been recorded scores of times over.

There are so many variables, even surrounding such a widely recorded drum, that lend to the sound just as much as the snare itself. The type if mics, the reel to reels and techniques all lend itself to this feeling of "vintage" just as much and possibly more so than the snare itself.

I think many who have the snare try as much as possible to achieve that tone as they can because they really like the vibe that some of the greats achieved with this piece of gear.

But, if you throw different snares and heads on it, and tune it differently, then use different recording techniques, you may come up with a completely different sound.
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  #56  
Old 09-24-2013, 11:44 PM
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Default Re: Are Ludwig Supraphonics really that good a snare

While I believe there is a certain undeniable quality to the sound of a Supraphonic, I think the reason they are so highly valued is they are extremely versatile. They respond very well to all manner of heads and tuning, and I think it takes a lot of work and abuse to make one sound truly bad.
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