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  #1  
Old 06-27-2010, 12:31 PM
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Default help with snare side head?

ok, so my snare is a cheap dixon birch 5.5x14. for heads, i've got a G1 batter and hazy 300 snare side, with tama starclassic wires(the one for $15 i think). right under where the snares contact the head, i've put a little piece of duct tape on each end to reduce sympathetic vibrations, and it's actually worked real well.

anyways, i need to replace the snare side head. last time i detuned it i noticed it had a bunch of little dents allover and grooves under where the snare wires go that go away when the head is under tension, but i'm sure it's affecting the tone somehow. i'm not sure which way to go for what i want. i think i want something that will give me less snare wire sound/sensitivity, as the snare is much louder than any of my toms or the bass. should i go with a thinner or thicker head? should i tune the snare side lower? tone-wise i like to keep both heads tuned relatively high, with the batter just a slight bit lower.

any feedback's appreciated!
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Old 06-27-2010, 02:46 PM
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Default Re: help with snare side head?

What you're seeing when you remove the snare side head are the dents made by the snare beds--shallow depressions made in the bearing edge for the snare wires. Normal.

I'd stick with a hazy300 or a hazy snare-side Ambassador--it's what 95% of drummers use.

BTW, snare buzz is a normal thing caused by the snare head being sympathetically excited by another drum, usually a tom. The solution is not tape on the snares. It is finding the offending tom and retuning either it or the snare or both to reduce the buzz. You usually don't have to make a drastic change, often a slight change in tuning will reduce the buzz sufficiently. You will rarely be able to eliminate it.

You might be interesed in this link and this link, as well as this one on tuning snare drums.
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Old 06-27-2010, 05:18 PM
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Default Re: help with snare side head?

As Drumtechdad already mentioned, the marks on the head under the snare wires are normal, as the constant vibration of the wires makes marks in the head.

I agree that what you've got now, G1 batter and 300 snare are pretty much standard in snare drum setup, but you do have some other options.

If you're looking for a little less sensitivity, you could get an Evans 500 glass snare head. Slightly thicker, less sensitivity, but I think it would probably make a shallow drum sound a little boxy too.

Aquarian makes a Hi-Performance snare side that is reinforced under where the snare wire end clips sit on the head. I don't think they reduce sensitivity but they should make the head a little more durable being more rigid near the snare beds.

What I'm most curious about is when you say the snare is much louder than either the toms or bass drum. Are the toms and bass muffled more significantly than the snare? What heads are you using on the rest of the drums?
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Old 06-27-2010, 06:08 PM
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Default Re: help with snare side head?

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Originally Posted by Winston_Wolf View Post
As Drumtechdad already mentioned, the marks on the head under the snare wires are normal, as the constant vibration of the wires makes marks in the head.

I agree that what you've got now, G1 batter and 300 snare are pretty much standard in snare drum setup, but you do have some other options.

If you're looking for a little less sensitivity, you could get an Evans 500 glass snare head. Slightly thicker, less sensitivity, but I think it would probably make a shallow drum sound a little boxy too.

Aquarian makes a Hi-Performance snare side that is reinforced under where the snare wire end clips sit on the head. I don't think they reduce sensitivity but they should make the head a little more durable being more rigid near the snare beds.

What I'm most curious about is when you say the snare is much louder than either the toms or bass drum. Are the toms and bass muffled more significantly than the snare? What heads are you using on the rest of the drums?
thanks for info!

the snare has got a moongel on it, while the toms have got evans rings on them, and the bass has a towel wrapped up and velcro-ed against the perimeter of the head. the bass could probably stand to be less muffled, but the toms' difference in volume with and without the rings is very slight.
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Old 06-27-2010, 06:12 PM
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Default Re: help with snare side head?

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Originally Posted by drumtechdad View Post
What you're seeing when you remove the snare side head are the dents made by the snare beds--shallow depressions made in the bearing edge for the snare wires. Normal.

I'd stick with a hazy300 or a hazy snare-side Ambassador--it's what 95% of drummers use.

BTW, snare buzz is a normal thing caused by the snare head being sympathetically excited by another drum, usually a tom. The solution is not tape on the snares. It is finding the offending tom and retuning either it or the snare or both to reduce the buzz. You usually don't have to make a drastic change, often a slight change in tuning will reduce the buzz sufficiently. You will rarely be able to eliminate it.

You might be interesed in this link and this link, as well as this one on tuning snare drums.
cool, i'll check out those videos.

there's not just the snares' grooves, but a bunch of little potholes, just from me constantly taking the snare off the stand and laying it on my bed while having stuff on there while messing around with it tuning-wise. as far as the buzz goes, i'm not to concerned with it as much, i've already taken care of it with the duct tape lol it's just a tiny bit under the snare ends by the beds. the tape hasn't deadened the snares completely, just shortened their sustain so i don't get that nasty buzz from the 2 or 3 wires still going after the rest have stopped.
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Old 06-28-2010, 09:23 PM
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Default Re: help with snare side head?

Try an Evans Glass 500 reso. I have one on my Supra-Phonic and it sounds MASSIVE. Its obviously more durable too, as its 2mil thicker than its Hazy 300 counterpart.
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Old 06-29-2010, 12:35 PM
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Default Re: help with snare side head?

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Originally Posted by keystone91 View Post
Try an Evans Glass 500 reso. I have one on my Supra-Phonic and it sounds MASSIVE. Its obviously more durable too, as its 2mil thicker than its Hazy 300 counterpart.
cool man, but did it lessen the overall volume?

i'm starting to think i might just have to get a different set of snare wires with less wires on it for what i'm trying to go for, but either way i still need to get a new head first and foremost.
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Old 06-29-2010, 03:40 PM
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Default Re: help with snare side head?

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Originally Posted by super rad stuff View Post
cool, i'll check out those videos.

there's not just the snares' grooves, but a bunch of little potholes, just from me constantly taking the snare off the stand and laying it on my bed while having stuff on there while messing around with it tuning-wise. as far as the buzz goes, i'm not to concerned with it as much, i've already taken care of it with the duct tape lol it's just a tiny bit under the snare ends by the beds. the tape hasn't deadened the snares completely, just shortened their sustain so i don't get that nasty buzz from the 2 or 3 wires still going after the rest have stopped.
It's worthwhile to understand that a typical 3mil snare side head is about the thickness of plastic food wrap. You need to be careful of it--very careful. Do not set the drum down on anything other than an unobstructed flat surface. Better yet, stand it on end.

If you need to solve snare buzz issues with tape, I recommend you try tuning the problem out. It may take a little while, but it will get you where you want to be without compromising sound and sensitivity with tape. Then you might consider wires with fewer strands.

Remember also that small practice rooms are a culprit--you may get buzz in there that disappears in a venue-sized room.

If you still have some snare buzz after that, relax: so does nearly everybody else. Have somebody else play the kit in a venue-sized room while you listen from 20-30' away. You'll discover that it's much less of a problem that it seems from the driver's seat. And with the band playing, no one's going to hear it.
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Old 07-02-2010, 03:28 AM
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Default Re: help with snare side head?

Snare problems - the plague of every drummer and his brother.

The snare drum often defines the sound of a drummer. You've got to find what you like, i.e. wasting gratuitous amounts of money on tons of different heads and experimenting like crazy with them.

As for sympathetic buzz - tune it out. Usually for me, I can tighten my snare-side head (I use a Hazy 200) just a bit and the buzz nearly disappears.

Also consider this - drums sound massively different in the driver's seat than they do from the audience - the snare buzz might not be noticeable. This is the fault of so many drummer who shove their whole bed into a 22x20 bass drum because they like that sound from the passenger seat of their car. Check it out - have your mom or someone bang around on your drums while you listen. THEN you can really get a feel for how your kit sounds.

Good luck!
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Old 07-02-2010, 09:38 AM
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Default Re: help with snare side head?

thanks for the replies. i'm not trying to tune out any more snare buzz, i'm fine with it really! i've already tuned it out pretty well. what i'm trying to accomplish is get less of the snare sound when i actually hit the snare to lessen the volume and get more of a head/shell sound for more of a pop.
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  #11  
Old 07-02-2010, 12:44 PM
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Default Re: help with snare side head?

Hmmm if i understand what your saying correctly, then i would take both heads off. Before slapping a coated ambasador over a snare side ambassador, crank the batter head right up. crank the snares right up, should mean that you get less of a snare sound due to the slight choking? :S

Sorry if thats not what your looking for, and i dont think thats the ideal solution, but i get a beautiful noise out of my snare that way, it may also reduce the vibrations.
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