Copper Snare Drum?

nofreewill

Junior Member
I'm in the process of making major upgrades to my kit now that I have a job and I'm thinking about starting with the snare. I tend to favor interesting, unique sounds, when I went out to buy cymbals I ended up with a vintage Zildjian crash and a Bosphorous ride with partial lathing and a very strange ping to it. I've been reading up a bit on various snares and saw that copper snares exist, but I've yet to see a review of one or have someone talk about how they sound. I'm mostly interested in copper because I really like the color, but I imagine it might sound different from your average metal snare as well. Someone posted a link on here that I found enticing:
http://www.dunnett.com/products/co-01.php

What I really need is a review from someone who owns or regularly uses one.
 

caddywumpus

Platinum Member
I have played around on several over the years, as one of my local drum shops used to construct custom copper/brass/aluminum snares. I have a 12x5 one that I use for musicals. Basically, it sounds kinda like a brass snare, but less bright and more "warmth". Easier to control the ring on a copper snare through tuning, more so than a brass or steel snare. I have a hammered one, and it's beautiful. The 14" model was a bit much for me, so I went with the smaller one.
 

TTNW

Pioneer Member
Check out the Gretsch Hammered Antique Copper.



I played one for about a year before I sold it and it sounds great. Very easy to control the "honk" and is not as dry as aluminum.
 
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sticks4drums

Guest
Check out the Gretsch Hammered Antique Copper.



I played one for about a year before I sold it and it sounds great. Very easy to control the "honk" and is not as dry as aluminum.
Nice looking snare. Love the hammered look on snares.
 

nofreewill

Junior Member
warmth and not as dry as aluminum sound like qualities I want. my problem is I'm relatively new to drumming (a year and a half) so I have very little idea of what drums should sound like up close. I am interested in punk, metal, postrock and lots of heavy/fast/loud music if that helps. what kind of sound qualities do people see in metal snares that they choose them over wood snares and do those qualities fit with the kind of music I am interested in playing?
 

TTNW

Pioneer Member
If you have been playing for a year and half, you've got a great but long journey in discovering sounds you like vs. sounds that work either for the music you play or for what the audience hears.

Give us a little info about your playing situations and maybe we can give you some good recommendations for snares that will sound good with the kind of music you play and where you play it.

Lots of threads here on the sound characteristics of various snare materials, so check those out.
 

nofreewill

Junior Member
Well I'm not in any bands yet, although I'm starting to look. My kit is currently set up in my room at home. To be more specific about music I like a lot of the more jazzy postrock drumming, but I'm currently big into stoner metal and postmetal. I don't hit superhard and I'm working on dynamics a lot at the moment but louder does seem to be better in the context of metal (or being heard at concert volume metal shows) which is partly why a metal snare seemed attractive.
 

Evilbagua

Silver Member
Well I'm not in any bands yet, although I'm starting to look. My kit is currently set up in my room at home. To be more specific about music I like a lot of the more jazzy postrock drumming, but I'm currently big into stoner metal and postmetal. I don't hit superhard and I'm working on dynamics a lot at the moment but louder does seem to be better in the context of metal (or being heard at concert volume metal shows) which is partly why a metal snare seemed attractive.
I play doom/stoner rock and fight a literal wall of amps 8x12 and a 8x15. Unmic-ed a metal snare is going to cut more than wood of the same size live. I either use a enormous wood snare like a 14x12 or 15x12 converted marching snare tuned very tight or a normal size metal drum 14x6.5 etc. If you want less ring than brass and steel but some warmth and volume maybe check out a bronze snare. I have a 14x5.5 bronze that I bought new for well under 200$ and it cuts just fine.
 

BGH

Gold Member
I own 2 Yamaha copper snares and love them (and they are easy on the eyes as you said). These are from the 90's. Yamaha still makes copper snares, but not these models. What the others are saying is spot on: warmer than brass or steel. Seems to me, though, if you're playing punk and metal, you wouldn't want a copper snare. I don't play those styles, but seems to me that brass or steel is what you'd want in a metal shelled snare.

Don't know what your price range is, but in steel you could look at the Pearl Morgan Rose or Yamaha Jimmy Chamberlin. In brass, the Pork Pie Big Black brass, Ludwig Black Beauty or Ludwig Supraphonic (chrome over brass version). You could even try a Ludwig Acrolite, which is a great snare at resonable price. They have a great crack and full bodied sound for an aluminum shell.
 

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macr0w

Member
Here is a copper DW that I have. Itis a 14x3.5 I think.

I don't know how I would describe the sound since most of the snares I like are wood.

It sounds good it doesn't have the crack of a wooden snare but I still like it and use it from time to time.

It definitely looks good. :p
 

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P33v3

Member
I own 2. A DW Collectors 5X14 and 6X14.
I find the 5X14 is a little more versatile and is my favorite snare ever. It is always setup in my kit. It plays any type of music I ask of it with brushes, sticks, or bare handed like a bongo.
The 6X14 reminds me of a Supraphonic with a slightly deeper sound but also more controlled and mellow. With some metal snares you get lots of ring. With copper it is there but isn't a sustained and decays much quicker than steel or brass. I preferred wood snares too until I found these snares. I tend to tune them pretty high but have tried them low too. The sound great no matter how you tune them.

macr0w love the shorty version. Mine are the polished version like that. Didn't know they did a piccolo version. I may have to look for one.
 

Shedboyxx

Silver Member
The only copper snare I've played was a Yamaha at a GC a few years ago. Very nice sounding drums.

I just sold my brass drum because I just wasn't using it in most of the stuff I play. Even the louder music favored other drums.

I replaced my Yamaha Paul Leim 5.5 x 14 Brass snare with a 6.5 x 14 Ludwig Hammered Bronze. GREAT sounding drum. It has body and cut but still is warm. It isn't the first or only bronze drum for me. I own a discontinued Mapex 5.5 x 13 bronze that was working and still does for so many things. I just love the sound of good bronze snares. Either a Mapex (has to be used since they don't make them any more) or a Ludwig are great drums. I got my Ludwig Bronze Supra at a great price but they generally sell from low $400's used to mid $500-600 new. I've heard very good things about the Ludwig Bronze Rockers which go for much less (approx $200?). Mapex bronzes are getting scarce but they will sometimes sell for mid $200's -$300s on eBay. I have heard Pearl Bronze Sensitones are nice as well.

I don't play metal, punk, thrash, etc. but the first type of drum composition that comes to mind is brass. I would say steel but I just feel like brass will give good cut and be more musical sounding all the way around. I've never been able to enjoy steel drums very much. Too much 'cank' and not enough 'honk' for me.
 

macr0w

Member
macr0w love the shorty version. Mine are the polished version like that. Didn't know they did a piccolo version. I may have to look for one.
Yeah, it's nice.

My wife bought it for me almost 10 years ago when we were dating.

I go through phases of liking it and not liking it. lol

Overall I do like it a lot.

It really dusty in that pic. I should clean it up. :)

Edit:

I just measured mine. It is a 14x4.

Now I'm going to clean it up some.
 
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sticks4drums

Guest
The only copper snare I've played was a Yamaha at a GC a few years ago. Very nice sounding drums.

I just sold my brass drum because I just wasn't using it in most of the stuff I play. Even the louder music favored other drums.

I replaced my Yamaha Paul Leim 5.5 x 14 Brass snare with a 6.5 x 14 Ludwig Hammered Bronze. GREAT sounding drum. It has body and cut but still is warm. It isn't the first or only bronze drum for me. I own a discontinued Mapex 5.5 x 13 bronze that was working and still does for so many things. I just love the sound of good bronze snares. Either a Mapex (has to be used since they don't make them any more) or a Ludwig are great drums. I got my Ludwig Bronze Supra at a great price but they generally sell from low $400's used to mid $500-600 new. I've heard very good things about the Ludwig Bronze Rockers which go for much less (approx $200?). Mapex bronzes are getting scarce but they will sometimes sell for mid $200's -$300s on eBay. I have heard Pearl Bronze Sensitones are nice as well.

I don't play metal, punk, thrash, etc. but the first type of drum composition that comes to mind is brass. I would say steel but I just feel like brass will give good cut and be more musical sounding all the way around. I've never been able to enjoy steel drums very much. Too much 'cank' and not enough 'honk' for me.
Bronze baby. You can't beat it. :)
 
I play doom/stoner rock and fight a literal wall of amps 8x12 and a 8x15. Unmic-ed a metal snare is going to cut more than wood of the same size live. I either use a enormous wood snare like a 14x12 or 15x12 converted marching snare tuned very tight or a normal size metal drum 14x6.5 etc. If you want less ring than brass and steel but some warmth and volume maybe check out a bronze snare. I have a 14x5.5 bronze that I bought new for well under 200$ and it cuts just fine.
I hope you wear hearing protection.
 
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