I don't own a metal snare. Should I?

cochlea

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Many years ago there was an interview with Kenny Aronoff in MD where he said that every drummer should have a minimum of two snare drums, preferably a 6.5x14 wood snare and a 5x14 metal snare. This has stuck with me over the years but to this day I still do not own a metal snare. I once had a 60's acrolite but sold it because it didn't do anything special for me. Unlike most of you, I only have two snare drums at this time -- a '65 Pioneer that came with my Ludwig Super Classic kit and a 6.5x14 Craviotto "Johnny C." I rave about the "Johnny C" every chance I get. It sounds great tuned high or tuned low. It's very sensitive, has a great cross stick sound, and sounds great with brushes. It also has enough ring but can be controlled with a little moon gel to provide a more controlled sound. I've thought about Kenny Aronoff's advice over the years, but every time I think about getting a metal snare, a quick practice session with my Craviotto convinces me otherwise. So my question for all of you is "what would I get from a metal snare that I don't get from my solid shell Craviotto?" By the way, I'm more of a hobbyist so I don't need anything at this time that will cut through highly amplified guitars.
 

Squirrel Man

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Acros work for some and not so much for others.

It's like anything else, "metal snare" is a broad category full of things that could and may not work for you.

Go borrow a couple different ones if you can and see what they do for you.
 

1988fxlr

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If you don’t want or need one, you shouldn’t own one. If you want one, and didn’t like the acrolite, try something brass or steel
 

Redbeard77

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At the risk of getting banned from the forum, no, you don't "need" a metal snare drum.
Many players prefer wood or metal in general, but I think most would agree that you can do just about anything you need to with one snare by adjusting heads/tuning/muffling to get different sounds.
 

spelman

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Many years ago there was an interview with Kenny Aronoff in MD where he said that every drummer should have a minimum of two snare drums, preferably a 6.5x14 wood snare and a 5x14 metal snare. This has stuck with me over the years but to this day I still do not own a metal snare. I once had a 60's acrolite but sold it because it didn't do anything special for me. Unlike most of you, I only have two snare drums at this time -- a '65 Pioneer that came with my Ludwig Super Classic kit and a 6.5x14 Craviotto "Johnny C." I rave about the "Johnny C" every chance I get. It sounds great tuned high or tuned low. It's very sensitive, has a great cross stick sound, and sounds great with brushes. It also has enough ring but can be controlled with a little moon gel to provide a more controlled sound. I've thought about Kenny Aronoff's advice over the years, but every time I think about getting a metal snare, a quick practice session with my Craviotto convinces me otherwise. So my question for all of you is "what would I get from a metal snare that I don't get from my solid shell Craviotto?" By the way, I'm more of a hobbyist so I don't need anything at this time that will cut through highly amplified guitars.
Remember, Aronoffs advise was mainly for a studio drummer:

Aronoff advises anyone who wants to
do studio work to invest in a collection of
snare drums. "Start with a 5" metal
drum and a 6 1/2" wood," he says. "That
will cover a lot of situations. The next
step would be to get either a wood or
metal 3" piccolo snare. Now you're
pretty well-rounded. Then start
expanding until you have each of those
sizes in wood and metal."

(
Modern Drummer 1991)
 

DanRH

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My favorite snares are aluminum, copper, fiberglass and then wood. In that order. On the fence on brass and steel.
 

Drdrumdude3009

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Nobody has to do anything, as I say. If you’re satisfied with the tonal pallet that your non-metal snares give you, then you don’t need it. I have a love/hate relationship with metal snares, but maybe the lowly little Premier I scored for a C-note has changed my mind. We’ll see…
 

blueingreen

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Of course you should own a metal snare! I have way too many snares, but if I could only have one it would be one of my Ludwig 1920s two piece brass shell snares...This is essentially the same drum as the legendary Ludwig Black Beauty but without the engraving. Check out the example on this vid at 36:30...this old drum blows the dozens of modern made drums in this vid out of the water...they are all great but nothing has ever duplicated the 1920s two piece brass shell Ludwig snares! oh yeah, that exact drum is sitting on my snare stand right now :cool: !
 

Josh Vibert

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Nothing against Kenny. He's the pro and I'm not. That said, I've had some pretty decent wood drums over the years (4x14, 5x14 DW 10&6, 5.5x14 Pearl Masters) and always found them to be very one-dimensional. Currently I only own 2 snare drums, an LM400 (5x14 Aluminum Supraphonic) and an LB417 (6.5x14 Brass Black Beauty). The only thing that tempts me anymore is something like a 7x13 Brady, but it's such a niche sound I'd honestly never use it other than for fun at home.
 

RogersLudwig

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My three favorite materials for a snare drum are 1. wood; 2. wood, and 3. wood.
You don't "need" a metal snare. But just like I don't need a 1964 AC Cobra with a 427 cu. in. engine in British racing green, I would buy one if I had the money.
 

premierplayer

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I'm with ya', I can't warm up to anything metal. I've owned some good ones, set em' free.
I do still have one, a craptastic offshore steelie, it rings for about 8 seconds after each strike, if you strike it more than once in 8 seconds it just rings that much longer. I call it the NASCAR snare, after the TV commercial a few years back that had the ringer snare.
Every now and again I pull it out if someone pulls my chain. ALL of the guys I play with hate it.
 

RogersLudwig

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I'm with ya', I can't warm up to anything metal. I've owned some good ones, set em' free.
I do still have one, a craptastic offshore steelie, it rings for about 8 seconds after each strike, if you strike it more than once in 8 seconds it just rings that much longer. I call it the NASCAR snare, after the TV commercial a few years back that had the ringer snare.
Every now and again I pull it out if someone pulls my chain. ALL of the guys I play with hate it.
I hear ya brother. I own a Ludwig LM-400 (Ludally/aluminum) and a LB-422 (brass), both hammered to help suppress the ringing, and they come out of their cases only often enough to be hit once, evaluated as "meh", and then put away again. Bun E. said the LB-422 may have been the first one out of the factory in 2008 (it has the 100 year anniversary badge). Todd Trent hyped me into ordering it instead of a BB back when he owned Ontario Music and he was still Ludwig's artist rep. One day I'll sell them, but I have no incentive as they won't fetch nearly the $ I spent on them.
attachment.jpg
 

Matched Gripper

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Many years ago there was an interview with Kenny Aronoff in MD where he said that every drummer should have a minimum of two snare drums, preferably a 6.5x14 wood snare and a 5x14 metal snare. This has stuck with me over the years but to this day I still do not own a metal snare. I once had a 60's acrolite but sold it because it didn't do anything special for me. Unlike most of you, I only have two snare drums at this time -- a '65 Pioneer that came with my Ludwig Super Classic kit and a 6.5x14 Craviotto "Johnny C." I rave about the "Johnny C" every chance I get. It sounds great tuned high or tuned low. It's very sensitive, has a great cross stick sound, and sounds great with brushes. It also has enough ring but can be controlled with a little moon gel to provide a more controlled sound. I've thought about Kenny Aronoff's advice over the years, but every time I think about getting a metal snare, a quick practice session with my Craviotto convinces me otherwise. So my question for all of you is "what would I get from a metal snare that I don't get from my solid shell Craviotto?" By the way, I'm more of a hobbyist so I don't need anything at this time that will cut through highly amplified guitars.
IMO, it depends on whether you like the sound of a metal snare drum. Different metals can sound significantly different. Aluminum will tend to be the most dry metal, steel the most ringy.

What you are likely to get is a brighter, louder sound with a distinctly metallic tone, as opposed to a drier, woody crack.
 

Buddy Roach

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Many years ago there was an interview with Kenny Aronoff in MD where he said that every drummer should have a minimum of two snare drums, preferably a 6.5x14 wood snare and a 5x14 metal snare. This has stuck with me over the years but to this day I still do not own a metal snare. I once had a 60's acrolite but sold it because it didn't do anything special for me. Unlike most of you, I only have two snare drums at this time -- a '65 Pioneer that came with my Ludwig Super Classic kit and a 6.5x14 Craviotto "Johnny C." I rave about the "Johnny C" every chance I get. It sounds great tuned high or tuned low. It's very sensitive, has a great cross stick sound, and sounds great with brushes. It also has enough ring but can be controlled with a little moon gel to provide a more controlled sound. I've thought about Kenny Aronoff's advice over the years, but every time I think about getting a metal snare, a quick practice session with my Craviotto convinces me otherwise. So my question for all of you is "what would I get from a metal snare that I don't get from my solid shell Craviotto?" By the way, I'm more of a hobbyist so I don't need anything at this time that will cut through highly amplified guitars.
Sounds like you're set. You don't need a metal snare. Play that Johnny C and live your best life!
 

NobleCooleyNut

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Cochlea O recall the same interview with Kenny and I believer he is correct . Like you I prefer wood shell snares atypically with the exception of my 5” Ludwig Engraved Black Beauty . This is my go to snare and old reliable . I have no interest in any other metal shell snare drum .
 

T_Weaves

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I've been using nothing but wood snares (Hendrix Archetype Staves) for few years now. Having recently purchased a mint/used Tama W/B for a mess around kit I thought I'd get a snare to pair up with it so I bought a Starphonic Aluminum 14x6. What a neat drum! Hardware is exponentially better than a Supra or Acro. The drum sounds killer too at various tunings. They cost about $525 new. I'm really happy with it. It has the sound arc hoops that curve inward, in addition to Tama's best dual adjustable strainer and butt plate that are used on their Star series. I love the fact that bottom hoop has open edges for the snares. With those and the removable butt plate you can change your bottom head without affecting your snare settings.
 

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BennyK

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Make sure its the right one for you . Walk around the store ( or whatever) and play it around different reflective surfaces and ceiling heights where possible . Have some one else do the same with you listening twenty feet away .

Take a guitar buddy or singer along with you , listen to what they're hearing . Experiment with different tunings .

Its natural to try and make all your snares sound like your favorite . Maybe you don't need another , who knows?
 


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