The back-story: If there was a meeting for Oriollo addicts anonymous I would probably have to attend. My collection thus far includes 9 snares and 3 kits. I use all of this frequently, and really can’t say enough good things about the sonic palette the different materials provide me. Occasionally, I will get a little extra cash, and will approach Vukan about doing something interesting or unique…kind of a non-stock creation. I find the process somewhat experimental, but also a lot of fun. It’s very cool to have a company that will accommodate my requests. I have done this in the past with a 16X5 aluminum, and more recently a 15X6.5 spun steel. I have been kind of jonesing lately for a shallower snare…and one with somewhat of a vintage vibe…so I tossed the idea of this 14X4 Copper snare to him..and mentioned I wanted him to try some custom laser engraving…and he was all for it…and so this snare was born.
Arrival/Unboxing: This snare went through the same process as always…shipping from Serbia…taking roughly about 10 days to get to me…and being packed really well. No big surprises there. For this snare, I purchased snare w/strainer attached and provided my own lugs…which were smaller tube lugs. I did this because I felt it fit the vibe better.
How it's made: This snare is a Bakar and is 14X4. The layout of the snare is the Oriphonic, meaning it has a rounded top edge, and a slight inner 45 on the bottom. This snare is a brushed finish without a lacquer, so it will patina over time. For this snare, I wanted to do something unique, in the style of the vintage engraved snares…so I created a floral design in illustrator based off some designs I really liked from the 20s. I am not unaware of the fact that real engraving is superior to laser engraving, but my hope in creating the design was that the laser engraving on this copper shell would be nice and subtle, and have its own thing going for itself…and be very cool in its own way. I think I achieved that. I love the vibe of the laser engraving on this shell. i completed the snare with no flange hoops and claws to fit the vibe.
The Sound: i traditionally have always played deeper snares. My 5.5 aluminum was the first shallower snare i really liked. My experience with with 14x4 snares is very limited. i spent a little time setting up a friends 20’s nob, but i only spent an hour or so with it…and never recorded it or used it live…so I didn’t really form much of an opinion on it besides being so impressed with how low and beefy it could sound. Having Vukan make this snare for me was definitely an experiment for me. To be honest I wasn’t 100 positive I’d like the size of it. Well, i received this and started playing it…and I was impressed…I quickly recorded it…and really liked the tones I got. The feel was great. It was very sensitive. It felt big to me, despite being shallow. I told Vukan, “man this is a great snare, I like it.” All was well…and then i took it to the gig…and it blew my mind. i listened in the big PA, while my buddy played, and my mouth dropped. It sounded so thick and full with incredible punch. it was clean and crisp and sounded perfect. I’ve used it the past few weekends live, and it is just killing. Right now, it is my favorite snare to play.
I think in general its range is more on the higher side. It doesn’t go as low as my 6.5 snares, but still has a very nice low range. It can definitely get in the upper stratosphere/high cracking piccolo range…but I likely won’t use it like that. For a low tuning player like myself, it may not do stupid low…but the place i have been tuning it for live playing has been perfect and given me the exact sound i am looking for.
Summing it up: This snare rocks! To my amazement, its become my favorite snare. It is sensitive and very full sounding. It has a very unique visual design that has character and looks classy. This snare is an incredible surprise that will stay on my stand frequently in the near future.
VIDEO DEMO HERE: