Budget 6 1/2 x 14 snares that sound like Acros or Supras

yammyfan

Senior Member
Are the CS dots just something you enjoy or does it work and play well with Ambassadors? I didn't like the CS reverse on my Ludwig.
I'm a fan of CS dots in general and put them on every snare though ironically, not on my Supra. I'm using a Ludwig brand head on that one.

The Ambassador will work well on the Stage Custom. It's a go-to head for good reason.
 

JimmyM

Gold Member
Great advice.
I would add, if you don't need this for a gig or recording today, why not save up a little longer and get what you really want. If you do need it for a gig or recording NOW, why not borrow one. Surely you have some contacts from your bass playing?
All my contacts know what their snares are worth :D
 

Iristone

Well-known Member
With years of experience I have found very few cheap drums actually deliver consistently. I do think some drums and drum brands are over priced, but that's where user reviews and friend's recommendations make the difference.
I just have not found a $200 snare drum to be that great. They can be good on one day, or on one song, but not consistent performers.
That's why I say you generally get what you pay for (up to a point). Large numbers of people will tell you a Pearl Sensitone or an Acrolite are great performers. I would take that feedback over one or two people raving about a $100 steel drum. But each to their own.
Maybe $200 is below the threshold of a good, non-steel drum. Neither Pearl Sensitones nor my Jinbao is under $200 (though I snatched mine up for less than $200 because it was a floor model).
Sometimes a more expensive drum may not always perform that consistently; my RB Gretsch would be an example. But I do agree that the best 'bargain' drums are often used ones or floor models, instead of new, budget ones.
 

opentune

Platinum Member
OK, so here's what I'm getting out of this entire conversation summed up into one sentence:

Jim, you may actually enjoy the heck playing out of a cheap but good steel snare, but you're best served by getting used to the idea of bringing your prized Ludwig and watching it like a hawk on more cheesy gigs, and waiting for a deal on the metal snare you really want, which of course is a Supra.

Do I have it right?

Well my read was this: "Jim you say you want and can only spend $100 ....so here's tens of suggestions for things over $300 to $500" :)
I agree with all the posts to buy less and buy quality. I have no idea what your Ludwig snare is, but I am a big fan of 'play the damn thing' and bring it out of the house.
 

SomeBadDrummer

Platinum Member
I agree with Winston Wolf. And Bermuda. I just scored a Supra. for $245. Off CraigsList. Most of eBay/Reverb are $280 and up ..... and for $280 ..... it was totally SPANKED.

The Stage Custom steel snare .... can be found at around $125. It's not gonna sound like a Supra ..... but as steel snares go ..... it's a good steel snare. I have 2 steel snares ..... a vintage Tama Royalstar, and a Pearl Chad Smith signature model.

Under $100 ..... here's a Yamaha ...... probably as good as anything you'll find under $100.
I had a Tama Royalstar kit back in the early 80's, I'd love to see a photo of your Royalstar snare drum!
 

SomeBadDrummer

Platinum Member
I've about given up on the Diablo snare. That means I need to get on the stick getting another snare because I'm not taking my precious vintage Ludwig wood snare to gigs. I'm also not going to buy a standard Supra unless I can get one for $100, which is max.

Here's what's important to me:

---A rich but not overbearing low end, and plenty of top end with a decent amount of ring available...like a Supra...exact tones are not necessary, but has to sound as pro as anything out there

---Isn't a sloppy piece of too-thin aluminum that goes out of tune within minutes

---Has to be between 5 1/2" and 6 1/2" x 14", 6 1/2 preferred, no piccolos, please :D

---No more than a hundy but $75 would be even better

Here's what not important to me:

---10 lugs per head

---The metal for the shell, though again, the Supra's a semi-target for tone

---How the hardware is attached or how good the throw-off is. You're talking to a guy whose only snare till three weeks ago has a throw-off invented in the 30's.

---The brand, though let's not go nuts and recommend CB700...who in their right mind would try to make a go of CB700's?

:/

I kind of know what to look for, but not really...like I know if I see a Slingerland aluminum snare under a hundy, I should snag it. Or maybe a Rocker with a metal shell. But I just don't want to get stuck with a bad one like the Diablo, so if you have pet beater snares that you think hang with the more expensive ones tonally and can be had for less than $100, name names. TIA!
Reading the Title, not sure there is such a thing unless you stumble upon one at garage sale or flea market.
 

cbphoto

Diamond Member
Here's what's important to me:

---A rich but not overbearing low end, and plenty of top end with a decent amount of ring available...like a Supra...exact tones are not necessary, but has to sound as pro as anything out there

---Isn't a sloppy piece of too-thin aluminum that goes out of tune within minutes

---Has to be between 5 1/2" and 6 1/2" x 14", 6 1/2 preferred, no piccolos, please :D

---No more than a hundy but $75 would be even better
You're short about $275. Keep saving, don't buy cheap crap.

Seamless aluminum shell, 8 lugs, killer sound, $330:

SLPAluminumSnare.jpg

This one, the "Super Aluminum" isn't available any more, but they're out there. Back in the day, it was ~$400.

Tama SLP Super Aluminum WM.jpg

And in the CL realm:

 

harryconway

Platinum Member
I had a Tama Royalstar kit back in the early 80's, I'd love to see a photo of your Royalstar snare drum!
Got a whole kit ..... for $170. 22, 12, 13, 16 w/snare, plus some hardware and Camber cymbals. Eventually, I'll get around to cleaning this snare up. It certainly has potential.


tama royalstar 14x5.jpg
 

cbphoto

Diamond Member
Eventually, I'll get around to cleaning this snare up. It certainly has potential.
What process will you use? That snare looks like a good candidate for Nevr-Dull.
 

SomeBadDrummer

Platinum Member
Got a whole kit ..... for $170. 22, 12, 13, 16 w/snare, plus some hardware and Camber cymbals. Eventually, I'll get around to cleaning this snare up. It certainly has potential.


View attachment 113229
Seamless, it appears to be in good condition albiet in need of a good stripping, cleaning, oiling and spit polish.
 

SomeBadDrummer

Platinum Member
I'm gonna soak it in a solution of water, CLR and The Works. Saw that on a resto. video, and his stuff came out great.
Not to say that isn't the best solution, but I personally would never put a drum in water regardless of the material. If it's dirty and needs cleaning as all used gear does, I'd wipe it down first with a soft cloth and then strip it.
If it's got rust/pitting, then a thin oil like WD-40 or 3in1 oil will loosen anything that's tight, and anything that's rusty or pitted will also appreciate the lubrication. I use oil to polish drum shells, hardware, cymbals, pedals, everything. Oil lubricates the world.
 

harryconway

Platinum Member
Not to say that isn't the best solution, but I personally would never put a drum in water regardless of the material. If it's dirty and needs cleaning as all used gear does, I'd wipe it down first with a soft cloth and then strip it.
This is where I found this solution. Thought I'd give it a try.

 

JimmyM

Gold Member
Well this has been an enlightening thread. With threads like these, I always like to sum up what I learned...

1. There are really good and really bad snare drums

2. Usually the worst of them are steel, although some steel snares come off really well in recordings

3. There's a fine line between the sound of a snare that crushes gigs and a snare that crushes your will to live

And I didn't learn it in this thread, but while I'm sure it's happened to someone somewhere, I can't recall ever hearing about a drummer getting their drums stolen at a gig. So instead of rushing out at the first snare I see that looks halfway decent for $70, I am going to gig the Ludwig and just plain forget about getting another snare unless a deal so insane gets dumped in my lap.

Sorted.
 

yammyfan

Senior Member
Usually the worst of them are steel, although some steel snares come off really well in recordings
I actually find cheap wood snares to be generally worse than cheap steel snares. I think that steel is both economical and easy to work with and most manufacturers sell decent steel drums for less than their wood, brass and aluminum counterparts.

At any rate, gigging your Ludwig snare is the right call if it sounds best to you. I can only speak for myself but when the kit in front of me sounds good, I play better.
 
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