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Ludwig Black Magic

VintageUSA

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A drummer friend of mine told me that Ludwig has discontinued producing the Black Magic line of snare drums.
I have a 7X13 and, for me, it is excellent....a beautiful finish with tube lugs and cast hoops....arguably, the throw is not the greatest.
Does anyone here know why Ludwig might do that?
Will the resale value of the drum increase?
 

cochlea

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They're renamed this the "Universal" series. There's a new badge, updated throw, and in some cases, tube lugs that are a bit beefier than those on the Black Magic line. The metal shells remain the same.
 

VintageUSA

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OK, thanks....I found it.
They brag on the minor updates you mention, but declined to tell you the price is up $100.
Over the last 25 years or so, Ludwig marketing has made some goober mistakes....this could be another.
 

lossforgain

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OK, thanks....I found it.
They brag on the minor updates you mention, but declined to tell you the price is up $100.
Over the last 25 years or so, Ludwig marketing has made some goober mistakes....this could be another.
I’m not sure about the 13” model, but some models of the black brass Universal are available in both die cast hoops and triple flanged. There’s about a $100 difference in price. Maybe that’s what you’re seeing.

I have watched some drumming groups on Facebook get super excited about the new Universal drums, but I’m shaking my head because it’s the same thing as the Black Magic. Yes, they update the throwoff which is an improvement, but it wasn’t necessary.
 

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I don't mind the throwoff on my Black Magic at all. I got probably one of the last ones made, so maybe it's a different throwoff than most?
 

VintageUSA

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lgf:
My Black Magic (cast hoops) was easily $100 cheaper than the current provision.
I thought the original drum and the associated marketing was to offer a less expensive cousin to a Black Beauty.

Tornado:
I can live with the throw; and it doesn't affect the quality or playability of the drum.
It's just that it is a bit flimsy compared to the rest of this well-made snare drum.
 

Tornado

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This is my drum.

20221207_094355.jpg


It's way more robust than the one on my Acrolite.
 

lossforgain

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I agree, the Black Magic definitely went up in price over the years.

I got one several months back when they were on closeout, and it was quite a bit cheaper than the new Universal model. I put cast hoops on mine and it kills.

I don’t mind the throw at all, but I can always upgrade it if I want.
 

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I was looking at Ludwig's Universal series myself recently. I was told these are imported and not the same hardware that Ludwig USA uses on their higher end drums. I guess that stands to reason but they have a Cherry Finish Wood Snare that looks pretty nice. Anyone have any opinions?
 

VintageUSA

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Yeo -- that's the same throw I have.
The 7X13 Black Magic is a great snare drum -- I bought it new in 2014 or 15 for around $320.
I play it cranked fairly tight and it has a splendid tone.
You would be surprised how a 13 (rather than a 14) provides a little space for your kit.
And when I told my wife that I had gained an extra inch between my legs, she was thrilled.
 

Redbeard77

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New ones are $349 with chrome hardware. Cast (black) hoops models are $449. If I recall, that's only about $50 increase from where they used to be. Seems pretty reasonable in today's market.
 

lossforgain

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I was looking at Ludwig's Universal series myself recently. I was told these are imported and not the same hardware that Ludwig USA uses on their higher end drums. I guess that stands to reason but they have a Cherry Finish Wood Snare that looks pretty nice. Anyone have any opinions?
They are definitely imported and you are correct, not the same hardware.

The wood shells look nice, they are 6-7 plies of whichever wood you choose -- recently I saw an advertisement that said they were maple with an outer ply of each respective wood, but Ludwig's website disagrees and says they are all the same wood throughout the shell.

Someone recently commented here on the forum that he was having trouble getting a pleasant sound out of his cherry version. I PM'd the person to make some suggestions about tuning and heads but I never heard back. If I didn't have a solid shell cherry already I might consider it, but the price is high enough that I would probably go solid. I have always like the sound of a one ply cherry drum.
 


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