Snare Wire Buzz


Junior Member
I apologize in advance if this topic has been beaten to death countless times here, but I'm just looking for some input.

I recently purchased a new kit (Mapex Mars). The snare wires buzz quite a bit when I strike the rack toms. I've made sure that all the hardware is isolated and, to the best of my limited ability, have inspected everything to make sure nothing is out of place, damaged, etc.

I never noticed this on my old kit, which was just a Ludwig Accent entry level set.

Of course, when I'm playing/practicing at full volume, it's not very noticeable, but when I lightly hit the toms, the snare wires really react.

Is this kind of thing normal? Suggestions? Just deal with it?



Administrator - Mayor
Staff member
Very normal. Adjust tom tuning, snare head tuning, both batter and reso, adjust snare wires. Many things.

Rattlin' Bones

Gold Member
You should hear the buzz in my practice area. I have a collection of snares and they all start to buzz at times so I'll have 5+ snares all buzzing away. Sounds like angry bees lol.


Junior Member
You should hear the buzz in my practice area. I have a collection of snares and they all start to buzz at times so I'll have 5+ snares all buzzing away. Sounds like angry bees lol.
A strip of felt between the snare wires and resonant head, with very light tension, will cut down on that buzz for any snares you have in your practice area you aren’t using. Make it about the same width as the wires and a few inches shorter.


Senior Member
Besides retuning the snare, try just moving your snare drum back or away from the nearest tom. An inch or two might do it.


Gold Member
Ever notice how Sweetwater's Nick D'Virgilio (among dozens of others) demonstrates drum kits? First, he plays them with snares off, then with snares on. Why? Because snare buzzing in sympathy with other drums in the kit is simply a fact of life. It's an inextricable part of the whole. Snares are intended to buzz with any exposure to sound, and the other drums in a kit produce exactly that.

This is not to ignore that some snare variables will produce excessive buzzing. In those cases, there are numerous methods to counteract that. But completely eliminating the ring is - at this stage of development - impossible. The guy that invents a system by which snares buzz only when the snare drum is struck is going to make a lot of money, I promise.



Gold Member
It’s annoying if the buzz is really loud.

- Don’t tune the reso head super tight. Get the pitch of the snare right for you.
- Make sure the snare wire ends are parallel to each other, not angled, so that the tension is equal across all wires.
- Some toms are pitched to a frequency that resonates the wires more than a slightly higher or lower pitch. Test this by raising and lowering the pitch of the offending tom.


Junior Member
If you really need to reduce synthetic snare buzzing, you could tune the drum higher and then tighten the tension knob on the strainer, till it reduces the snare buzz. Hit your tom just enough so you can hear the snare buzz tighten up. Don't over tighten the strainer, or you'll over chock the snare drum. Just get it to where the buzz is hardly distinguishable.


Platinum Member
Throw away the 10" tom and your problem will be greatly reduced.
Get a 13" snare and it will be reduced even more.


Platinum Member
Agree with the tuning advice above - make sure both heads of each tom aren't the same pitch as either snare head.
For me, this usually means loosening the reso head of the highest tom a little bit.

Then at a gig you'll find certain bass and guitar notes make it buzz too.. I have no answer for that.


Platinum Member
Also - if the snare seems overly sensitive to buzzing - check that the snare wires are installed correctly and squarely, and are sitting flat.
Some people suggest loosening the reso head either side of the snare wires. Worth a try.

Foggie Blur

Active member
On my kit, extra snare buzzing is usually because one or other snare skin is out of tune or Tom tuning (usually the resonant head) is out or just too high/tightly tuned.


Senior Member
It can be said that some snares are just a bit buzzy. An old trick is to put a tee-shirt over snare (see Beatles playing on the roof of Abbey Road). I keep a thin wash cloth in my stick bag just in case I’m forced to play on my church’s annoying snare.


Platinum Member
Three things certain in life....death, taxes and snare buzz :)

Puresound wires are supposed to reduce it. Worth the investment. As others have said mess with the tuning of your drums so the frequencies aren't interfering with your snare.

Replace the stock heads on the Mars, they're gonna be single ply Chinese Remo Ambassadors so are gonna be a tad on the lively side anyway!


New member
Yeah, Puresound Equalizer with the gap in the middle does help - I don't really know why, but it does not eliminate it. Having heard snares buzz all my life, I hardly notice it sometimes, drives me crazy other times. Other non-drummers notice it a lot, and think "something's wrong." All of the above suggestions (basically re-tuning some combination of tom/snare heads) help. But that gets into messing up the sound of toms, the intervals, etc. Some compromise, or "living with it," is required. It'll never go away.