Black Beauty

A

Anthony Amodeo

Guest
I've played nothing but a Black Beauty for the past 12 years.....and never will play anything else
 
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KarlCrafton

Platinum Member
Totally agree. I've heard plenty of snares that sounded great or just as good as a BB but cost way less. While the BB is a quality snare you're paying a premium for the name more than anything.
I'd say a little for the name sure, but I also own a World Max Brass snare (5", "vintage" model), and while it's a really nice sounding snare, it's still an 8 vs. a 10 (side by side) to my ear.
An "8" is pretty dang good too, don't get me wrong, it's a pretty awesome drum, but the Ludwig spun shell sounds better to me.

The WM hardware is sturdy, but the WM tube lugs are not as beefy as Ludwig's tubes. The screws attaching the lugs on the WM are not as beefy either.

The WM throw is nice, but I like the P-86 better, and it looks better IMO (standard screws and all--I have not trouble with the 9 on my snares).
Like the WM, the butt on the BB has key screws, and is basically in the same spot as where WM puts the butt plate.

That said, a $2-300 difference in some instances (location prices) may or may not work for some people, or not matter, or as BFY said for him it's "not necessary".

I'm perfectly happy never buying another snare with having my BB's, but if I HAD TO, I could get a sound from a WM 6.5, or PP B.O.B., or a Pearl Brass snare that I'd love. I really dig a Pearl Steve Ferronne sig. snare a buddy of mine has (but he's not selling haha!).
 

groove1

Silver Member
When it comes to drums and cymbals I only care about "the sound". I am as far from being
a gear snob as one can get. I played a supraphonic 400 in the 60's to 1982. A couple weeks
ago I was going to spring for another supraphonic 400 until I listened to a black beauty side by side. I was simply sold by the sound of the black beauty. (I even tuned the heads the same etc for the comparison). I didn't hear enough of a difference to make it worth it to me to
get a hand hammered drum however. Just a personal choice. After changing to heads I prefer and a different snares, the drum sounds Fantastic for what I want. IF you don't love your new
BB as much, please post because I don't think that's possible!

Have Fun!
 

eamesuser

Silver Member
I have played a few BB's and I think they are great drums.
I own a WM Black Dawg and it is a great playing and sounding drum.

Never have gotten to A B them but would like to,to see how much difference there would be to my ears.

I can take my WM to the hellholes and dives I play and not worry a whole lot,or have to have my eye glued to it on set breaks.

The WM I think is one of the best sounding snares available for the money.The BB is also a good value for the money considering it's collectability and resale value,and it holds it's own or sounds better than snares costing twice as much.
 

SAINTDRUMS

Senior Member
I picked up the BB today and I can honestly say that I am very happy with my decision. It will see plenty of use but you can be sure I'll keep my eye on it. Before it came in I was debating whether or not to remove the rubber gaskets under the lugs, but after giving it a proper tuning and playing it a bit I think I'll leave them on - it sounds great as is. On side note, the drum store also received the new 6.5 acrolites - both the Classic and the brushed nickel Limited versions. They sounded nice. The 6.5's have 10 lugs, so now we have the choice of buying what is basically a non-chrome plated supraphonic!
 

Pocket-full-of-gold

Platinum Member
Before it came in I was debating whether or not to remove the rubber gaskets under the lugs, but after giving it a proper tuning and playing it a bit I think I'll leave them on - it sounds great as is.
If you ever find yourself with half an hour to kill....and want to humour yourself. Take 'em off and have a listen to the drum without them. The gaskets do make a pretty noticeable difference to the shell tone. You may be pleasantly surprised to hear that old fashioned Black Beauty mojo ringing loud and clear without them......after all, that's the sound that became famous in the first place. You can always put them straight back on if it ain't doing it for you.

Great drum either way. Enjoy!!
 

SAINTDRUMS

Senior Member
PFOG - I wanted to let you know that I ended up taking off the rubber gaskets after all. I thought the Ludwig head sounded muted at a medium-high tuning and decided to change out the factory head with one of my favorites - a G1 coated. One thing that surprised me and the first thing I noticed when taking the factory head off - it didn't slip over the bearing edges and onto the shell, in fact it required an unusual amount of force to remove it relatively speaking. There was enough tension between the head collar and the shell OD that I couldn't spin (rotate) the head on the shell. In contrast, the G1 dropped right down onto the shell and spun freely which was a relief. I figured "since I was in there" I would take off the gaskets. To my ears, I can hear a difference in the sound.
 

KarlCrafton

Platinum Member
Probably a bad Ludwig head, usually they're pretty good, as far as roundness.

One thing I noticed at the shop yesterday, they have 6.5 BB, and Black Magic snares on the shelf. The plating on the BB is much more "mirror like", and the BM was more, super shiny black.
More "plated" looking than just real shiny Black, but it didn't have the same look at all. Nice sounding snare though.
 

Kg_lee

Senior Member
Probably a bad Ludwig head, usually they're pretty good, as far as roundness.

One thing I noticed at the shop yesterday, they have 6.5 BB, and Black Magic snares on the shelf. The plating on the BB is much more "mirror like", and the BM was more, super shiny black.
More "plated" looking than just real shiny Black, but it didn't have the same look at all. Nice sounding snare though.
How does a BM compare to a BB is sound?
 
A

audiotech

Guest
You would think that the operators at the factory would be able to feel if a head is fitting properly or not. Who knows. I did hear that Ludwig is acknowledging some of their problematic drum heads and doing something about them.

Congrats on your new Black Beauty, heads are very easy to replace, finding a BB many times is not.

Dennis
 

Pocket-full-of-gold

Platinum Member
To my ears, I can hear a difference in the sound.
So can I. Do you prefer it without the gaskets? I had a friend who bought one a while back and we A/B'd my BB without gaskets to his that had them on. His verdict? We ripped 'em off on the spot. :)

Agree with the others on the Luddy head. The heads that came on my snares all fit perfectly. But to my ear I find the sound with them on too thin anyway, so always swap them out for Emperors.

How does a BM compare to a BB is sound?
BM is more focused, but the reality is that that comes down to the die cast hoops as opposed to any real differences in the shell alone IMHO (i.e. seamless vs welded). I currently have die casts on my BB as an experiment. They really dry the drum out....way more so than the gaskets. Great in my boomy practice room....but if I ever went back gigging on a more regular basis, they'd come off immediately.....just kills the mojo that the BB is famous for in the first place IMHO.
 

KarlCrafton

Platinum Member
How does a BM compare to a BB is sound?
I think the real difference in a seamed, and spun shell is the kind of shell ring you get.
The welded shell has a little more "controlled" ring to my ear. It's still a shell ring, but it's a little shorter (DC rims will dry the sound out--like everyone else has said).

That's how my World Max shell reacts anyway. I like it, it's just different.
A tiny sliver (size of the word Remo) of Moongel will get the same effect as to the ring length on my BB, but the over all sound of the BB is a little more "open" than the WMax drum.

It's all in what someone wants, or cares about...and can/wants to spend on a drum (as usual!).
A WM (or whatever name is on it), even thought the parts on it aren't as beefy as on a Ludwig, it's not gonna fall apart, so it's up to the person plunking down the money.

The BB does have a certain Mojo to it though, I can't lie.
 
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