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  #1  
Old 01-24-2013, 06:54 PM
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Default Sonor Gavin Harrison Protean Signature Snare Drum

Some things facebook is actually good for... getting fresh info.

Sonor have just disclosed what their Protean project is about:

SONOR presents: GAVIN HARRISON Protean Signature Snare Drum
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s_8zsm4UHV4

Gavin's signature snares come in 2 sizes: 14'' x 5.25'' and 12'' x 5''.

And yes, someone assumed that Protean box was for storing a snare wire - correct.

------

Here's the Sonor info taken from their facebook announcement:

NEW FOR 2013!! The Gavin Harrison "Protean" Signature Snare will be offered in two sizes, 14" x 5.25" and 12" x 5". Made from 6-ply, hand-selected Birch and featuring a timeless Silky Black finish which is offset by white-shell hardware underlays. The snare features a special open triple-flanged steel hoop on the bottom, making SONOR's Dual Glide snare strainer even more versatile as multiple snare wires can be used and exchanged quickly and easily. Another special feature is a set of three newly designed dampening rings that are available in different widths (Light, Medium and Heavy dampening), a set of two special designed 'Protean' tuning keys that make the exchange of heads and tuning, easier, faster and more convenient.

In late 2011, SONOR and Gavin began working on the 'Protean' project with the goal to create a snare drum that is as musically versatile as Gavin himself. The name 'Protean' comes from Greek mythology meaning "versatile" and "diverse." Gavin wanted this snare drum to be a daily workhorse instrument that can be quickly altered to suit the musical situation.

"I believe every drummer has an inner voice that they're trying to convey. SONOR drums articulate that inner voice and help me express my true 'drum personality'. SONOR drums speak my language" (Gavin Harrison)

---------

UPDATE (January 28th)
Another Protean video...

Gavin Harrison: Protean Bonus Feature
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wdma3m5LUzs

Last edited by Arky; 01-28-2013 at 04:25 PM.
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Old 01-24-2013, 07:44 PM
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Default Re: Sonor Gavin Harrison Protean Signature Snare Drum

Im sure this will be priced well north of 1K.....Ill keep my white glitter GH signature instead.


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  #3  
Old 01-25-2013, 01:03 AM
ZDrums24 ZDrums24 is offline
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Default Re: Sonor Gavin Harrison Protean Signature Snare Drum

According to Gavin, that white glitter wasn't a signature drum. It was a reissue of a 90s drum that he used a ton and still does.

This protean drum (although a bit over the top with all the snares and special keys) is a very different drum. Different shell, different bearing edges, different hoops... If it comes with a price tag under $1k, I'm going for it. The rounded bearing edge alone is such a rare find in modern drums.
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Old 01-25-2013, 03:13 AM
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Default Re: Sonor Gavin Harrison Protean Signature Snare Drum

Nice


Anyone know where to get one in the US?
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  #5  
Old 01-25-2013, 04:35 AM
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Default Re: Sonor Gavin Harrison Protean Signature Snare Drum

I'm sure it'll be a great drum...I figure I'll have a heart attack when I see the price.

I know Gavin takes the sound of his drums very seriously and I've no doubt his new snare will follow suit.
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Old 01-25-2013, 07:26 AM
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Default Re: Sonor Gavin Harrison Protean Signature Snare Drum

I am giving serious thought to the 12" Protean. I like them both, for sure.
I just shelled out one kilobuck + tax for a 6 x 14 Sonor Pure Canadian snare (13 ply Canadian maple with a birds eye maple finish ply, die cast rims, stainless steel 'EQ' type wires)....so having the 14" Protean at this point seems a little redundant.

But that 12".....I could use that as a main snare for some gigs - the rounded batter edge gives it a very phat pop. Unique!

Neal
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Old 01-25-2013, 07:42 AM
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Default Re: Sonor Gavin Harrison Protean Signature Snare Drum

Both of these are seriously on my wish list right now. I love my 5 x 12" snare, but I imagine this one will make it sound like a kid's cheap toy.
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Old 01-27-2013, 06:23 PM
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Default Re: Sonor Gavin Harrison Protean Signature Snare Drum

I also have the white glitter 5x12, its no toy. The 14" Protean, however, could replace the need for multiple snares, which means one could sell several snares to offset the cost of the Protean. If this drum can be made to sound like 4 or 5 different snares, That's all you need. Sure wish I had it for this weeks session! My DW Edge is on the chopping
block first.
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  #9  
Old 01-27-2013, 06:55 PM
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Default Re: Sonor Gavin Harrison Protean Signature Snare Drum

I love the look of this snare. I really want to get my hands on the 12x5. It looks fantastic! And according to someone on another forum who seems very linked in with Sonor, the MSRP is $899, which I think is fairly reasonable!
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Old 01-27-2013, 07:48 PM
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Default Re: Sonor Gavin Harrison Protean Signature Snare Drum

Wow! Those are some cool snare drums. Besides the obvious stuff, the whole drum is well thought-out right down to the 3 dampening rings. The tuning keys are a nice touch too. Never thought of turning two keys at a time. I'm going to try that when I change heads next time.
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Old 01-27-2013, 08:15 PM
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Default Re: Sonor Gavin Harrison Protean Signature Snare Drum

Quote:
Originally Posted by ZDrums24 View Post
The rounded bearing edge alone is such a rare find in modern drums.
Rare, but used fairly extensively by smaller builders such as ourselves & Craviotto. We've been offering "hybrid" edges as standard on our snares & kits for the last 4 years. Generally, bearing edge manipulation is a very under used tool to shape a drum's playing characteristics.

That small clarification aside, I think this is a very well thought out drum package. I like it when features are built in for a real world reason, & not just to gain attention & marketing differentiation. Additionally, Sonor make great drums with consistent quality. TBH, I think the drum itself, by virtue of it's placement as an all round drum, is a little characterless. It has to be a touch on the benign side to fulfill such a wide brief. If it had a very distinctive voice, by implication, it wouldn't be very flexible in application.

I like it. I like the concept, & I like the execution.
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Old 01-27-2013, 08:17 PM
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Default Re: Sonor Gavin Harrison Protean Signature Snare Drum

Wow, how many of us have the white Sparkle not-signature drum? ;)

I think the price point will be the nail in the coffin for most people sadly. However that "hybrid bearing edge" is a really neat idea! I wish I had a local builder that I could get to do that to one of my snares. haha Also, I'm not too sure about the snare wire system. It looks like it could fall out quite easily, but maybe I'll just have to see how it works in person.

I wonder if you can buy the snare wires separate? I would definitely pick some of those up for my various snare drums.

-Jonathan
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Old 01-27-2013, 08:23 PM
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Default Re: Sonor Gavin Harrison Protean Signature Snare Drum

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Originally Posted by keep it simple View Post
Rare, but used fairly extensively by smaller builders such as ourselves & Craviotto. We've been offering "hybrid" edges as standard on our snares & kits for the last 4 years. Generally, bearing edge manipulation is a very under used tool to shape a drum's playing characteristics.

That small clarification aside, I think this is a very well thought out drum package. I like it when features are built in for a real world reason, & not just to gain attention & marketing differentiation. Additionally, Sonor make great drums with consistent quality. TBH, I think the drum itself, by virtue of it's placement as an all round drum, is a little characterless. It has to be a touch on the benign side to fulfill such a wide brief. If it had a very distinctive voice, by implication, it wouldn't be very flexible in application.

I like it. I like the concept, & I like the execution.
Yet another reason I need to get my hands on a guru snare! I imagine most custom drum companies would do that sort of thing (not to downplay what you guys do Andy), I just think that not too many people think about that sort of thing when thinking about their custom snare. They're more focused on the wood and what colour it'll be.

-Jonathan
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  #14  
Old 01-27-2013, 08:27 PM
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Default Re: Sonor Gavin Harrison Protean Signature Snare Drum

I do have the white sparkle 135th Anniversary, non signature edition - although his signature is on it...he didnt design it. It is a Designer-era workhorse that is assuredly no toy. Gavin seems to have a proclivity for Designer era stuff for his snares, thats fine, but the lugs are kind of a disappointment...and yes, the snare is somewhat characterless as someone mentioned here, but most Sonor German offerings are function over form...so the beat goes on apparently.


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Old 01-27-2013, 08:31 PM
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Default Re: Sonor Gavin Harrison Protean Signature Snare Drum

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pass.of.E.r.a. View Post
I imagine most custom drum companies would do that sort of thing

-Jonathan
Absolutely they can, but very few do. In any case, it's not the ability to mix bearing edges that's important, it's why you do so that matters. We only offer a mix of edges that we've tested extensively and found to work. For example, there's edges we'd put on a stave snare that we wouldn't put on a steam bent snare (depending on wood species).

Of course, non of that information detracts from the work Sonor & Gavin have put in. As I said in my previous post, all of this drum's features have been well thought through, and with real world benefits. I think this drum series will do well, & it deserves to.
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Old 01-27-2013, 08:49 PM
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Default Re: Sonor Gavin Harrison Protean Signature Snare Drum

I really like this drum and will likely add at least the 12" to my collection eventually.

But despite all of the drum's features, there is only one feature you couldn't quickly and easily add yourself, to your own drum : the hybrid edges.

Damping rings, adding a strainer with quick release (the Sonor Dual Glide strainer if your drum is compatible) , s-hoops, different snares, two keys, etc. are all readily available and are relatively cost effective 'upgrades' to any snare....
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Old 01-27-2013, 09:33 PM
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Default Re: Sonor Gavin Harrison Protean Signature Snare Drum

I saw the drums and think they are very cool. Maybe today I'll get a chance to play one. But I think a guy like me would get one and do everything in the world to make it sound like my old Supraphonic.

I recall doing that with pedals - I think every pedal I ever owned was made to feel like a DW5000.

Drummers are a curious bunch ;)
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Old 01-28-2013, 01:01 AM
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Default Re: Sonor Gavin Harrison Protean Signature Snare Drum

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Originally Posted by Bo Eder View Post
I saw the drums and think they are very cool. Maybe today I'll get a chance to play one. But I think a guy like me would get one and do everything in the world to make it sound like my old Supraphonic.

I recall doing that with pedals - I think every pedal I ever owned was made to feel like a DW5000.

Drummers are a curious bunch ;)
This is the most knowing post I've ever read on here! Thank you.
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Old 01-28-2013, 04:41 AM
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Default Re: Sonor Gavin Harrison Protean Signature Snare Drum

There certainly do like like some nice snares. I just cannot stand the idea of the dampening rings though, and how they play up their usage. Why resort to them? I guess that's just my bias speaking; I cannot abide the muffling of toms/snares.

Tuning/head choice > Muffling

I understand the practical applications in a pinch... but come one.
With that being said, they look nice. I wouldn't want one, but they look nice.
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Old 01-28-2013, 10:25 AM
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Default Re: Sonor Gavin Harrison Protean Signature Snare Drum

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There certainly do like like some nice snares. I just cannot stand the idea of the dampening rings though, and how they play up their usage. Why resort to them? I guess that's just my bias speaking; I cannot abide the muffling of toms/snares.

Tuning/head choice > Muffling
I come from the same school as you on this. We equip all our snares with a light single ply coated head (usually G1), as every aspect of the drum is designed to offer a specific voice without muffling (even dry), but a snare designed for the widest possible range of applications can't be that targeted. The stated purpose of this drum is to be all things to all players in every situation. An automatic "go to" snare if you like, & if you're spending much of your time recording, having a range of muffling & wire choices is a faster/more convenient route to getting the result. Many players use quite a selection of snares when recording several songs, specifically so they can dial in just the right sound every time. Personally, I prefer a more individual character route with different drums having a very distinctive voice, but Gavin & Sonor are shooting a different way. Both approaches are equally valid, but Gavin's/Sonor's route is certainly the more convenient and most economical one.
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Old 01-28-2013, 03:22 PM
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Default Re: Sonor Gavin Harrison Protean Signature Snare Drum

BTW all, my 12" snare is not the Sonor Designer with Gavin's name on it, it's another brand... no offense was intended.
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Old 01-28-2013, 04:20 PM
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Default Re: Sonor Gavin Harrison Protean Signature Snare Drum

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Originally Posted by keep it simple View Post
I come from the same school as you on this. We equip all our snares with a light single ply coated head (usually G1), as every aspect of the drum is designed to offer a specific voice without muffling (even dry), but a snare designed for the widest possible range of applications can't be that targeted. The stated purpose of this drum is to be all things to all players in every situation. An automatic "go to" snare if you like, & if you're spending much of your time recording, having a range of muffling & wire choices is a faster/more convenient route to getting the result. Many players use quite a selection of snares when recording several songs, specifically so they can dial in just the right sound every time. Personally, I prefer a more individual character route with different drums having a very distinctive voice, but Gavin & Sonor are shooting a different way. Both approaches are equally valid, but Gavin's/Sonor's route is certainly the more convenient and most economical one.
Oh I agree, and I do most certainly see the benefits/convenience of this. But for the limited stuff I do (I mostly just play at home), I myself don't "really" have any practical applications for this drum. It is certainly nice however :)
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Old 01-28-2013, 04:23 PM
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Default Re: Sonor Gavin Harrison Protean Signature Snare Drum

SONOR have just posted a link on another Protean video.
(I've also added that link in my 1st post.)

Gavin Harrison: Protean Bonus Feature
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wdma3m5LUzs
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Old 01-28-2013, 05:50 PM
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Default Re: Sonor Gavin Harrison Protean Signature Snare Drum

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Originally Posted by Arky View Post
SONOR have just posted a link on another Protean video.
(I've also added that link in my 1st post.)

Gavin Harrison: Protean Bonus Feature
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wdma3m5LUzs
A lot of common sense from Gavin in that video. I've been using the "depress the head in the center" tuning method for years, & it's a great tool. Also good for checking evenness of seating if you press hard enough to induce wrinkles. That gives you a visual check too :)

In general, a really well thought out snare drum program for the working player. One part of the video did make me laugh though, the need for including a picture of a pub! That's thinking straight from the red top tabloids, lol :) I'm surprised Gavin didn't insist on a picture of "fish & chips", as the pub photo was probably aimed at an international audience. Gotta love a Brit eh!
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Old 01-31-2013, 04:54 AM
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Default Re: Sonor Gavin Harrison Protean Signature Snare Drum

Today I saw a prolite snare in that awesome black and white finish (dunno the name). The drum sounded like my saturn snare to be honest (which is a good thing), but I took a look at the dual glide strainer which is the same as those fitted to Gavin's snare and it's very smooth. I'm sure Gavin's drum is good as anyone knows what a perfectionist he is. Couldn't see myself with a 12" snare personally.
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Old 01-31-2013, 01:40 PM
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Default Re: Sonor Gavin Harrison Protean Signature Snare Drum

I love sonor and have and and still own a number of sonor snares and kits. To me the sharpness of their bearing edges it what makes their snares sound so great, as well as their wide snare beds, This drum just sounds flat to me, plus it's kind of ugly. WEll to each his own, Tony Thompson always said you can deaden up a live drum but can't liven up a dead drum. Those round bearing edges to me are a thing of the past and belong in the past, although I haven't played one so I might have my opinion changed if I do.
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Old 01-31-2013, 02:17 PM
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Default Re: Sonor Gavin Harrison Protean Signature Snare Drum

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Those round bearing edges to me are a thing of the past and belong in the past, although I haven't played one so I might have my opinion changed if I do.
PC
I respect your POV, I just wish I had time to explain just how wrong you are to dismiss rounded edges. On that video, Gavin is using various dampening rings. He also has the drum tuned fairly low. We use a very wide combination of edges. Some sharp, some rounded, depending on what we want the drum to do. Rounded batter edges can be part of a very bright & lively drum construction. Edges are only part of the story, and as with all construction features, they need to be placed in context. Judging an individual feature in isolation is completely missing the bigger picture.
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Old 01-31-2013, 03:59 PM
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Default Re: Sonor Gavin Harrison Protean Signature Snare Drum

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Couldn't see myself with a 12" snare personally.
I used to say the same thing. Then I bought one. I had to force myself to use my 14" again.
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Old 01-31-2013, 06:35 PM
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Default Re: Sonor Gavin Harrison Protean Signature Snare Drum

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I used to say the same thing. Then I bought one. I had to force myself to use my 14" again.
Me too! I like how close I can get can my pedals. My hats no longer feel like they're in another time zone.

To echo everyone, what a beautifully thought out piece of equipment.

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Old 01-31-2013, 06:40 PM
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Default Re: Sonor Gavin Harrison Protean Signature Snare Drum

Looks like a nice piece of gear.

My old beater kit has rounded bearing edges: Too quiet and feels like mush. Iím totally surprised that Harrison would go for that. I can only assume that Sonorís version is louder and mush-free, but Iíll remain leery of the concept until I actually try out one of these new snares for myself.
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Old 01-31-2013, 06:54 PM
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Default Re: Sonor Gavin Harrison Protean Signature Snare Drum

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Originally Posted by pcastag View Post
Tony Thompson always said you can deaden up a live drum but can't liven up a dead drum. Those round bearing edges to me are a thing of the past and belong in the past, although I haven't played one so I might have my opinion changed if I do.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Anduin View Post

My old beater kit has rounded bearing edges: Too quiet and feels like mush. Iím totally surprised that Harrison would go for that. I can only assume that Sonorís version is louder and mush-free, but Iíll remain leery of the concept until I actually try out one of these new snares for myself.
The first snare in this video has rounded batter edges, & I defy anyone to rate it as mushy or dead, plus all but two of the snares in this video have 2 different styles of rounded batter edges. Put your good headphones on, and see if you can spot the two that have sharp edges :) http://youtu.be/SgSpQJE-XSo?hd=1
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Old 01-31-2013, 06:57 PM
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Default Re: Sonor Gavin Harrison Protean Signature Snare Drum

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Originally Posted by keep it simple View Post
The first snare in this video has rounded batter edges, & I defy anyone to rate it as mushy or dead, plus all but two of the snares in this video have 2 different styles of rounded batter edges. Put your good headphones on, and see if you can spot the two that have sharp edges :) http://youtu.be/SgSpQJE-XSo?hd=1
Well I appreciate the challenge, but a recording wonít give me any clues about acoustic volume or physical feel. Maybe you should send me a couple of Guru snares to try out in person? Iíll PM you my shipping address.
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Old 01-31-2013, 07:11 PM
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Default Re: Sonor Gavin Harrison Protean Signature Snare Drum

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Well I appreciate the challenge, but a recording wonít give me any clues about acoustic volume or physical feel. Maybe you should send me a couple of Guru snares to try out in person? Iíll PM you my shipping address.
Hahaha, point taken :)
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Old 02-01-2013, 06:57 AM
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Default Re: Sonor Gavin Harrison Protean Signature Snare Drum

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Originally Posted by keep it simple View Post
I respect your POV, I just wish I had time to explain just how wrong you are to dismiss rounded edges. On that video, Gavin is using various dampening rings. He also has the drum tuned fairly low. We use a very wide combination of edges. Some sharp, some rounded, depending on what we want the drum to do. Rounded batter edges can be part of a very bright & lively drum construction. Edges are only part of the story, and as with all construction features, they need to be placed in context. Judging an individual feature in isolation is completely missing the bigger picture.
Wel, like I said, I've never played on one sooooooo, i'm sure my miond could be changed.
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Old 02-01-2013, 07:17 PM
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My old beater kit has rounded bearing edges: Too quiet and feels like mush.
Interesting. So I think that that means I can rule out the rounded bearing edges as the cause of the quiet mushiness in my old beater kit. So then whatís to blame? Type of wood? Too much ear wax? A hidden colony of termites?
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Old 02-01-2013, 08:04 PM
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Default Re: Sonor Gavin Harrison Protean Signature Snare Drum

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Originally Posted by Anduin View Post
Interesting. So I think that that means I can rule out the rounded bearing edges as the cause of the quiet mushiness in my old beater kit. So then what’s to blame? Type of wood? Too much ear wax? A hidden colony of termites?
Rounded bearing edges are most likely a contributing factor, that's for sure, but they're unlikely to be the sole cause. To begin with, I think it's highly likely that both batter & reso bearing edges are rounded. If that's the case (please tell me if I'm wrong in that assumption), then a rounded bearing edge to the reso side would certainly account for a good portion of the "mushiness". A rounded bearing edge on the batter side does "put the brakes" on head sustain, but at snare tensions, it's almost a moot point. In the case of a reso bearing edge being rounded, that would quite significantly affect sensitivity on most drums, an exception being on stave/hollow log drums.

It's more likely that a range of factors equate to the mushy response from that drum. Volume is much more a product of shell construction/materials & head selection/tuning than bearing edges. My ebony stave has rounded batter edges, and as anyone who's heard that drum in real life will tell you, lack of volume is not an issue ;) there's also a big difference between "baseball bat" style old edges & the ones that Gavin is describing. The roundover is only to the outside, & rounding of the peak is more like R4 (rounded) as opposed to R1 (very sharp). As with all individual design features, they work together to produce the end result.

P.S. Termites would do it too. Have you seen the size of their nests? ;) ;) ;)
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  #37  
Old 02-01-2013, 08:14 PM
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Anduin Anduin is offline
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Default Re: Sonor Gavin Harrison Protean Signature Snare Drum

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Originally Posted by keep it simple View Post
Rounded bearing edges are most likely a contributing factor, that's for sure, but they're unlikely to be the sole cause. To begin with, I think it's highly likely that both batter & reso bearing edges are rounded.
Well, the kit Iím talking about is ooooooold! I got it in the mid 1970s, and it was used and beaten up already. Itís pretty low quality, and thereís no name (badges) on it at all.

At the time, Stewart was king of the cheapo kit, so Iíve always sort of assumed itís a Stewart, but I donít really know. Also, the 12 inch tom is a bit big, meaning that itís quite a squeeze to put a new head on it. Iím pretty sure itís the batter side that Iím thinking about when I say itís got rounded bearing edges; Iíll check the reso side next time I swap out the heads. Donít hold your breath for that one.
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Old 02-01-2013, 08:38 PM
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Default Re: Sonor Gavin Harrison Protean Signature Snare Drum

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Originally Posted by Anduin View Post
Well, the kit Iím talking about is ooooooold! I got it in the mid 1970s, and it was used and beaten up already. Itís pretty low quality, and thereís no name (badges) on it at all.

At the time, Stewart was king of the cheapo kit, so Iíve always sort of assumed itís a Stewart, but I donít really know. Also, the 12 inch tom is a bit big, meaning that itís quite a squeeze to put a new head on it. Iím pretty sure itís the batter side that Iím thinking about when I say itís got rounded bearing edges; Iíll check the reso side next time I swap out the heads. Donít hold your breath for that one.
I'm ooooooold & mushy, plus I have issues fitting into stuff these days. I'm seeing a trend here ;)
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Old 04-01-2013, 10:28 PM
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Default Re: Sonor Gavin Harrison Protean Signature Snare Drum

Hi All:

Iím a noob here. I picked up a 12Ē x 5Ē version of this snare to mate with a Sonor Newport Beech kit and I am in the process of assembling and tuning. I am coming back to acoustic drumming after a long absence but have been playing Roland electronic drums for the last several years. I do not have much recent experience with other snares but started on an Acrolite in the late 1960s and spent some time with a Super Sensitive in the 1970s.

With that said, this little gem will be a real joy for a long time to come. Tuning was a snap: I easily obtained my preferred combination of crack and body and the application of one of the included damping rings removed the little remaining ringing. I havenít really laid into it too much yet as I am still building the kit but I was able to produce a wide dynamic range of strokes, ghosts, and rolls with no difficulty. This little guy is extremely sensitive!

Iíll post more as I become familiar with the Protean and the rest of the set.

Croc
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  #40  
Old 04-03-2013, 10:17 PM
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Default Re: Sonor Gavin Harrison Protean Signature Snare Drum

I am a huge Sonor fan but I want to hear more feedback from the field before I jump on this.
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