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  #201  
Old 01-11-2008, 02:17 PM
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Default Re: Snare tuning

Go to youtube. Search for Bob Gatzen. He has 6-7 vids that are pretty basic, but comprehensive, regarding drum tuning.
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  #202  
Old 01-11-2008, 02:45 PM
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Default Re: Snare tuning

Have a look at these animations, they will give you some better understanding of how a drum head will vibrate. Bear in mind that the actual motion of a drum head will be the sum of all of these and similar motions combined. However, the fundamental pitch (the first animation) will be the most prominent in sound as it has the largest amplitude. They might help you understand tuning principles as well. They helped me :)
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  #203  
Old 01-11-2008, 03:01 PM
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Default Re: Snare tuning

Great stuff. So much easier than reading about it.
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  #204  
Old 01-11-2008, 05:21 PM
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Default Re: Snare tuning

I'll second the Gatzen recommendation. If you're having trouble with tuning (or you're not and just want to understand the subject better), it's a great resource. I was pretty happy with my tuning skills until I came across a Gretsch that was defying any attempt to get it vaguely in tune. I watched the Gatzen video in entirety, took some time with the drum and things came together nicely. (And also picked up a couple things from one of Billy Ward's DVDs).

Just go slow, get the lugs even (think of Bob's "putting on a hat" analogy), and when you tune up to pitch, do it incrementally and keep checking to make sure everything's in the same spot.
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  #205  
Old 01-11-2008, 06:06 PM
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Default Re: Snare tuning

Quote:
Originally Posted by sticksnstonesrus View Post
Go to youtube. Search for Bob Gatzen. He has 6-7 vids that are pretty basic, but comprehensive, regarding drum tuning.
After having 0 luck trying to tune my cheap Accent snare, I stumbled upon Bob Gatzen on youtube. My snare now sounds pretty decent "as decent as you can get from a cheap snare" and I applied some of his other tips around my kit.

IMO, Bob Gatzen is a great drummer, and gives awesome tips regarding drums, in all aspects.
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  #206  
Old 01-11-2008, 06:16 PM
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Default Re: Snare tuning

I would say tht Bob Gatzen's approach is very simply put and well stated in ways that makes it "not-so-frustrating". One still has a variety of choices to make (which head combo, what sound you truly adore) still, the vids cover basic items that truly affect sound (i.e. hoop and shell dynamics and how to cure problems).

I think one of the most important statements he makes is that "its small things that make big differences". Something that is truly critical when it comes to the attention-to-detail that is necessary to make large strides, both in the beginning and latter stages of not just tuning, but musicianship as a whole.
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  #207  
Old 01-11-2008, 07:04 PM
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Default Re: Snare tuning

Quote:
Originally Posted by sticksnstonesrus View Post
I would say tht Bob Gatzen's approach is very simply put and well stated in ways that makes it "not-so-frustrating".
My sentiments exactly, he doesn't make it any more complicated than it has to be. After all, this ain't rocket science we're talking about here..........

A close friend now owns the Drum Shop his Dad started back in 1960, he has worked there his entire life and has basically used Bob's method of Tuning the whole time. I call my friend's method the "brutally simple" Drum Tuning Method, heck he hardly ever taps the head at the nodal points and still gets a great sound each & every time, wait, let me clarify this, he gets as good a sound as that particular Drum will let him get.........

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  #208  
Old 02-13-2008, 02:22 PM
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Default Snare tuning nightmare

Hello

from what i understand, to get the best sound out of your snare drum, you've got to :

- tune the bottom head at least around G
- tune the batter head at the 3th, 4th or 5th of the reso head

problem is then when the snare strainer is on, it adds tension to the reso head. so the tuning is messed up ! the G becomes a B ...

if i remove some tension from the snare strainer, the reso head goes back to its original note, but then the snare strainer hasn't got enough tension for my taste. it has a slow decay when i want a fast decay.

i understand the snare strainer's function is also to muffle the reso head, but it's messing up the tuning here....

i haven't seen any instructional video talking about this problem. is there a problem with my setup ?

thanks & sorry for my english
bontempi
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  #209  
Old 02-13-2008, 02:27 PM
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Default Re: Snare tuning nightmare

honestly i think your getting too hung up on technicalities, no matter how high end your drums are you'll never get a perfect note note out of them no matter how you tune them.
dont worry so much about the note you have them tuned to as opposed to how it sounds to you. if you like the sound who cares what note its in.
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  #210  
Old 02-13-2008, 03:28 PM
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Default Re: Snare tuning nightmare

Quote:
Originally Posted by bontempi View Post
from what i understand, to get the best sound out of your snare drum, you've got to.... tune the bottom head at least around G
Where did you get this idea? First of all, all snare drums are different, and some like to be in a very specific tuning. There isn't a single tuning that gets you the exact sound you want from any drum. Second, around G... of which octave? You do realise that a resonant head's pitch range is very, very broad, and you have quite a few Gs to choose from. Instead of worrying about the actual pitch of the head, go for a general level of tightness -- do you want a loose, medium or tight resonant head? When you have your resonant head set, tune the batter head according to your taste. Again, you can go into many directions here. Generally I like to keep the batter head lower than the resonant, but not too much lower; anything from a major second to a perfect fifth works for me depending on the sound I want. Then, play the drum for a while and decide whether you like it or not, and if not, should you tune it higher or lower. Adjust the heads' tensions accordingly and experiment with the pitch interval between the heads.
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  #211  
Old 02-13-2008, 03:31 PM
bontempi bontempi is offline
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Default Re: Snare tuning nightmare

well i'm recording my drumkit, so i need to tune my snare as best as i can. the snare is the hardest element to mix in a drumkit.
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  #212  
Old 02-13-2008, 03:35 PM
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Default Re: Snare tuning nightmare

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wavelength View Post
Where did you get this idea? First of all, all snare drums are different, and some like to be in a very specific tuning. There isn't a single tuning that gets you the exact sound you want from any drum. Second, around G... of which octave? You do realise that a resonant head's pitch range is very, very broad, and you have quite a few Gs to choose from. Instead of worrying about the actual pitch of the head, go for a general level of tightness -- do you want a loose, medium or tight resonant head? When you have your resonant head set, tune the batter head according to your taste. Again, you can go into many directions here. Generally I like to keep the batter head lower than the resonant, but not too much lower; anything from a major second to a perfect fifth works for me depending on the sound I want. Then, play the drum for a while and decide whether you like it or not, and if not, should you tune it higher or lower. Adjust the heads' tensions accordingly and experiment with the pitch interval between the heads.
ok forget about that G, that was just an example :)

i know how to tune my snare, i just have a problem with that strainer that just muffle the reso head too much. i want to know if this is normal, and what people think about this.

if i loosen the strainer, then there's too much decay to it.... can't find the right balance
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  #213  
Old 02-13-2008, 03:47 PM
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Default Re: Snare tuning nightmare

Quote:
Originally Posted by bontempi View Post
i know how to tune my snare, i just have a problem with that strainer that just muffle the reso head too much. i want to know if this is normal, and what people think about this.
Sounds like it's cranked way too tight.

Quote:
if i loosen the strainer, then there's too much decay to it.... can't find the right balance
Muffle the batter head but keep the snares loose. A muffled batter head will resonate a lot less and therefore the snare wires will also rattle less.
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  #214  
Old 02-13-2008, 04:01 PM
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Default Re: Snare tuning nightmare

Tune the snare how you like it. Forget about all the note technicalities. Once you have it how you like it, it becomes your ENGINEERS responsibility to capture it well, not yours. If he's worth half of what you are paying him, he can get a good sound out of any snare. If you are doing it yourself, run an EQ. Roll off everything under 150-200 hz. Then notch a little big around 350-400 hz. That give you some body and fullness to the snare. You can notch again around 4000-5000 to get a little more brilliance off of the snare drum. Remember, making your kit sound good is the engineers job. Thats what you pay him for.
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  #215  
Old 02-13-2008, 06:31 PM
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Default Re: Snare tuning nightmare

You can't fix tuning problems with EQ, though.
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  #216  
Old 02-21-2008, 09:46 AM
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Default Re: SNARE TUNING

i found the best way to tune is with one of those drumdial tuners. i recently bought one and it's totally worth the $70 price tag. it at least gives you a good solid base to know that all your lugs are at the same tension and from there you can get higher or lower depending on how you feel.

somewhat off topic though, i was wondering if anyone had any suggestions to my problem, i discovered tonight that one of my lug screws wouldn't screw out of the socket, actually it wouldn't go much of anywhere, it's not THAT big of a deal since i can still unscrew all the other ones and just keep that last one on if i have to change heads, but i'm sure it'll get irritating in the long run. i was considering spraying it with dw40 to see if that could loosen it. help?? (fyi, it's my snare drum)
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  #217  
Old 02-21-2008, 11:31 PM
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Default Re: SNARE TUNING

I have a problem with my pork pie snare, my rudiments are terrible on the snare because the batter head is too tight. The problem is that the snare sounds really good! I play my rudiments noticeably cleaner on softer surfaces (such as my practice pad or my pillow). I'm not sure what to do.

Last edited by azula; 02-22-2008 at 12:03 AM.
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  #218  
Old 02-22-2008, 09:42 AM
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Default Re: SNARE TUNING

Reading this thread got me wondering about how I tune my snare drum. I tune the batter head for bounce and the bottom for, well, pitch, if you want to call it that, but I never really analyzed it. I always pretty much just cranked the sucker for a bright, crisp jazz sound with good dynamics and response.
So I just now found that my batter head, a coated Ambassador, is tuned to a G# and the snare head, also an Ambassador, is tuned to an E, more or less. Major third. I have no idea why, it just ended up that way.
The snares are snuggly up against the snare head, nice and comfy. I think that when you pull the snares up you should hear a clean and tight "snap" as they hit the head.
The drum rings a just a little, which I like, and there's a small amount of snare buzz when I hit the high tom, but that's what a snare drum does. Nobody out front can hear all that anyway. (Can they?)
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  #219  
Old 02-22-2008, 05:10 PM
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Default Re: SNARE TUNING

Quote:
Originally Posted by jay norem View Post
The drum rings a just a little, which I like, and there's a small amount of snare buzz when I hit the high tom, but that's what a snare drum does. Nobody out front can hear all that anyway. (Can they?)
If you want to get rid of that, what worked for me was I tightened up the reso head on my high tom, and it sounds pretty good and there is no more buzz. It took a lot of toying with so it may take awhile, and it may have only worked for my kit (by no means am I any type of expert, so I wouldn't know.)
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  #220  
Old 02-22-2008, 10:47 PM
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Default Re: SNARE TUNING

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Originally Posted by zzdrummer View Post
If you want to get rid of that, what worked for me was I tightened up the reso head on my high tom, and it sounds pretty good and there is no more buzz. It took a lot of toying with so it may take awhile, and it may have only worked for my kit (by no means am I any type of expert, so I wouldn't know.)
Well the slight snare buzz, that's not even noticable when the band is playing. I never noticed it even when I record. And since I play acoustic jazz the sound I want is a nice high-pitched resonant sound. To have an open "un-gated" sound like that you're going to get a little noise, I guess, but if everything is tuned right it's just a part of the overall sound of the kit.
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  #221  
Old 02-23-2008, 09:32 PM
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Default Re: SNARE TUNING

Quote:
Originally Posted by jay norem View Post
Well the slight snare buzz, that's not even noticable when the band is playing. I never noticed it even when I record. And since I play acoustic jazz the sound I want is a nice high-pitched resonant sound. To have an open "un-gated" sound like that you're going to get a little noise, I guess, but if everything is tuned right it's just a part of the overall sound of the kit.
Very true, you will never be able to completly eliminate it if you want that specific sound. By the way, I envy you playing in a band like that, I don't even know any other jazz mucisians.
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  #222  
Old 02-24-2008, 05:02 PM
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Default Re: SNARE TUNING

I got a pearl chad smith snare drum,and i wanted some advice on what snare wire and heads to use on it.Any suggestions?
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  #223  
Old 03-22-2008, 01:10 AM
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Default Re: SNARE TUNING

Quote:
Originally Posted by aabraham View Post
I got a pearl chad smith snare drum,and i wanted some advice on what snare wire and heads to use on it.Any suggestions?
I'd use an Evans Power Centre Reverse Dot, probably my favorite all around drum head. The dot gives it focus but it doesnt choke the overtones, which to me is exactly what that sort of drum should sound like (i.e. that's what Chad Smith sounds like).

Professor Sound who made the drum tuning bible, strongly recommends the thinner of the resonant heads for the snare (Remo Snare Diplomant or Evans Hazy 200), no matter what type of music you play. Supposedly it improves articulation but also has a shorter sustain than thicker heads because there's less mass to reverberate. It also cuts down on buzzing according to him.

Dunno about snare wires tbh.

Anyone seen Bob Gatzen's technique for tuning drums? Basicly, instead of just going around tightening each offensive lug, he actually would tighten or loosen the lug opposite it as it will change the tone much more. Amazingly, it really works. I just tuned my snare with that technique for the first time and it's honestly the purest sound I've ever gotten from any of my drums.

Ok he's an annoying weirdo, but a genius for coming up with this:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QLUkDXSfPCc
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  #224  
Old 03-25-2008, 08:59 PM
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Default Re: SNARE TUNING

How do I tune my snare to get the snare sound that Phil Ehart gets on the song "Carry on my Wayward Son"? I was listening to it the other day and really found myself loving the sound...
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  #225  
Old 03-28-2008, 04:57 AM
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Default Re: SNARE TUNING

Ludwig supraphonics or acrolites with a remo ambassador tuned up pretty high with a slight turn on the internal muffler get that great classic rock sound much like Phil Ehart's.
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  #226  
Old 05-01-2008, 02:42 AM
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Default Re: SNARE TUNING

Honestly I am not getting any fun out of tuning my drums. I just dont want to go through that pain. Even if I tune them right, they will be bad after my kind of play. So... I know it is a crime but...... what I have found out that if I put a thin towel on my drums, I get the heavy fat sound that I want.
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  #227  
Old 05-23-2008, 08:50 PM
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Default Re: SNARE TUNING

The Keith Moon,

Assuming for the moment that you aren't kidding (because you may be), there's nothing wrong with what you're doing.
That was Ringo's trick for recording his drums in his Beatle days.
He used, what the English call, "Tea Towels", but the principle is basically the same.

Rock on, dude.




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  #228  
Old 05-25-2008, 07:15 PM
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Default Re: SNARE TUNING

Has any one tried cutting down their snare wires, like Gavin Harrison does?

I was trying to make my (copper) Roy Haynes sig. snare sound a little like Gavin Harrison's snare in 'Futile'...

...so I cut down a 25 stand set of snare wires to just 5 wires!! (two outer wires on each side and one wire in the middle)

Then I tuned the snare batter (coated emperor) about medium loose tightness, the snare resonant (clear snare side ambassador) about medium tightness, made the snare wire tension fairly tight (because there are so few snare wires the drum seems not to choke as easily), and put two strips of narrow double-sided tape at the twelve and six o'clock positions on the batter (because I don't have an O ring) - and whaddayou know, I got pretty close to that really dead and articulate sound he has on that recording - though obviously the (dark and dry) character of my copper drum lends it's own tonality to that basic sound.

note: the Roy Haynes sig. snare does have an internal mute for the batter side, but for this sound - I leave it disengaged.
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  #229  
Old 05-26-2008, 07:12 PM
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Default Re: SNARE TUNING

T-1000,

That's an old trick.
Its mostly attributed to Steve Gadd, but other drummers have done it as well.
At one time, snare selection was kinda limited, so Gadd was "tuning" the snare sound by cutting off the wires.
I think "50 way to leave your lover" was recorded using a snare drum whose snare only had 10 or 12 wires.
Nowadays, there's a lot more different types of snares on the market, so cutting off snare wires is kind of a thing of the past.
Off-hand, I know Puresound Percussion makes snares with as few as 8 strands.
My own 13x3 Ludwig snare drum came from the factory with only 12 strands.
The fewer the wires, the drier the snare sound (doesn't make a drier sounding drum, only the sound of the snare reacting against the head).
It also makes the snares less sensitive.
I call it "the wrapping paper sound", because it reminds me of the sound of my finger flicking against a sheet of the brown or white paper that's waxed on one side that butchers use to wrap meat with at deli's.
Don Brewer, of Grand Funk Railroad fame, had a similar sound from his snare drum on all those albums that band did back in the 60's and 70's, although I'm not sure if he actually cut strands off his snare, or that was just how his snare drum came out on those recordings.



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  #230  
Old 05-26-2008, 07:22 PM
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Default Re: SNARE TUNING

Oh yeah, btw...

Quote:
Originally Posted by T-1000 View Post
I cut down a 25 stand set of snare wires to just 5 wires!! (two outer wires on each side and one wire in the middle)
Ok, so that's 2+2+1=5.

5= the number of wires you cut off the snare.

25-5=20

According to your description, you should have 20 strands left on your snare (standard strand count for any snare).

What about the other 15 wires?



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  #231  
Old 05-26-2008, 09:13 PM
T-1000 T-1000 is offline
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Default Re: SNARE TUNING

Yeah, Elvis, sorry I should have made it clear - the two outer layers of two wires and one wire in the middle are all the wires that are left on the drum, not the ones I cut off!
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  #232  
Old 05-28-2008, 08:16 PM
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Default Re: SNARE TUNING

Oh, I see.

That drum must have a very "dry" snare sound.

Thanks for clarifying your earlier statement.




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  #233  
Old 06-22-2008, 03:54 PM
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Default TUNING UP MY SNARE DRUM

Hey guys, i just bought a TAMA swingstar kit and they sound okay.

my snare isnt the metal type and im nt exactly a pro.
but anyway ive heard yamaha steel snares before and i loved them,
is there any way to tune my snare to make it sound crispy, crunchy and err metal like?
I really like remo heads (love the logo) so any suggestions that aint too costly? also tell me how i should tune my toms to perfect sound too.

i want my kick to sound deep and thuddy(lol)
help me out thanks guys!
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  #234  
Old 06-22-2008, 05:41 PM
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Default Snare tunning isue

Hello. My name is Andrew, and i wish to ask you something about snare drum tunning. I have birch wood, 14"x7" snare drum, and i can't tune it the way i like it. I'm trying to achieve resonant, warm sound, with lots of body to it. I'm able to tune it that way, but when i turn the snares on, they totally dry out the sound. I tried various tunning, especially with bottom head, but, what ever i did, i couldn't get that open sound when snares turned on. They just dry the drum out. I'm capable of tunning the rest of my set very well. I don't really mind in what pitch my drum is, as long as i get its full capability in resonance. So, i'm not trying to achieve something that can't be achieved.
Well, if any of you guys and girls think you can help me out, please do. Any comment on this may help me solve my problem.

Thank you all.
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  #235  
Old 06-22-2008, 05:44 PM
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Default Re: Snare tunning isue

Hi Andrew, welcome to Drummerworld.

First things first, are you using stock heads? Snares will naturally choke out the reso head to a degree, but we will really want to know the type of heads your using.
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  #236  
Old 06-22-2008, 05:46 PM
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Default Re: Snare tunning isue

Try a little tighter reso head and loosen you snares to a ridiculous state and then tighten so they just start to buzz. Good luck.
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  #237  
Old 06-22-2008, 05:57 PM
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Default Re: Snare tunning isue

Quote:
Originally Posted by That Guy View Post
Hi Andrew, welcome to Drummerworld.

First things first, are you using stock heads? Snares will naturally choke out the reso head to a degree, but we will really want to know the type of heads your using.
Hi That Guy. Thanks for the welcome.
I use remo ambassador coated head on top, and remo ambassador snare side hazy on bottom. I know that is natural to snares somewhat dampen the bottom head, but in my case, they totally dry it out! There's just no "body" to the sound. I know that i'm doing something wrong, but i can't tell what.
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  #238  
Old 06-22-2008, 05:59 PM
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Default Re: Snare tunning isue

Have you begun to try out Gruntersdad's suggestion?
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  #239  
Old 06-22-2008, 06:22 PM
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Default Re: Snare tunning isue

I tried all sorts of things, so i guess i tried that, too. Since i can tune the snare drum worm and resonant without the snares on, I think something is wrong with the snares... Well, not with them because they are new, but with the adjustment. I have adjustable but-end, and i just red on one site that it's important to have same tension on both ends... Does that make any sense?
I don't know... i'll keep on trying things. Thanks
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  #240  
Old 06-23-2008, 05:56 PM
dufeio dufeio is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Mexico City
Posts: 3
Default Re: SNARE TUNING

what worked for me was tuning the bottom head different from the toms.
the thing is that if the tone that your toms have is the same or close to the tone on the bottom head they will vibrate at the same time every time you hit them so try tuning them with at least a 2 note difference.
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