Snare sound

Tedemore

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When I practice with ear inserts and phones, my Black Beauty snare has a pleasing fat sound. Without them, it sounds too sharp and ringy. I've loosened the snares some already. I'm using Evans Black Chrome head on batter side. What else can I do to get the fatter sound? Do I need a wood drum instead? What other head might help? Thanks.
 

audiochurch

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Have Chuck Norris beat back unwanted overtones.

Seriously, try putting a few band-aids on the edges of your batter head. Band-aids come in various sizes, so experiment. I also have used dollar store stickers as well.
 

Bongo Brad

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Seems like most snares sound fatter with buds or cans. No help for what to do, just letting you know it’s not unusual.
 

Redbeard77

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Check out 3:20 in this video where Nick detunes the lug(s) closest to him to dry out/lower the tone:
 

Matched Gripper

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When I practice with ear inserts and phones, my Black Beauty snare has a pleasing fat sound. Without them, it sounds too sharp and ringy. I've loosened the snares some already. I'm using Evans Black Chrome head on batter side. What else can I do to get the fatter sound? Do I need a wood drum instead? What other head might help? Thanks.
Your headphones and earbuds are filterning out those sharp, ringy highs. If you are practicing in a small reflective space, the highs are going to sound more prominent. If you are in a larger space, or in an audience some distance from the drum, the highs dissipate and don't sound as prominent.
 

Squirrel Man

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FWIW, the sound with earplugs in is usually closer to what the audience is going to hear. (at least if you're not mic'ed)
This and if for any other reason protect your ears.

Me and a lot of other guys here I'm sure are perusing this thread with a hissing noise in our ears because we didn't use ear protection earlier in life.
 

CC Cirillo

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First off I see you are new. Welcome to the forum!

I too have an issue at times with the sound of my snare sitting on top of it, including my Black Beauty, which is supposed to be a snare so amazing one can summon the dawn early just by playing it.

I constantly have to remind myself the near field experience is not the same as the far field end result. Those overtones blend with the kit at a distance and even more so with a live band.

Yet many times those overtones bother me. I agree that rehearsing in a small space really can be harsh. Or any space once you get thumping hard.

For each of my snares in their case I keep a muffler ring I’ve cut out from old heads. This helps and really makes any snare, and particularly a BB sound fat And not as sharp (or depending on the style of music one is playing “phat”.)

I also have one snare dedicated for small space band practice and tuned accordingly. For me it’s an Acrolite with a double ply head, tuned a tad lower, tone control slightly up against the batter and ye olde muffler ring if needed.

It sounds good and controlled sitting on top of it, and it won’t knock out any fillings. Good mic’d up, but I don’t take it to loud live gigs when there was such a thing....
 

Beesting

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Snare wires have a very harsh sound to me, especially in small venues where you are close to the audience. A few years back I started experimenting with some muffling techniques, not for the top head, but for the snare wires. I came up with an idea that has worked for me in the small venues I play. I took a regular piece of cardboard and cut a circular piece that fits within the bottom hoop. It is sized so that it 'floats' within the rim. I lay it in the snare basket as I'm setting up my drum and I make sure it isn't pinched between the rim and snare basket. It doesn't press against the snare wires, so they are free to vibrate naturally. I've been very pleased with the result. Listening to live recordings of our group, I can still hear the snare wires but they are much more in balance with the top head and it gives the snare a thicker sound. Last time we played, a drummer came up afterwards and we were talking about gear and I showed him my cardboard idea and he was amazed. He said he noticed the snare sound and thought the cardboard circle was a fabulous solution to harsh snare wires. I play wood snares but try it on your Black Beauty and see what you think. It's a zero dollar solution...nothing to lose.
 

CC Cirillo

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Beesting, I’m interested in your method and want to give it a try.

While you’ve explained it well, I want to make sure I understand you. On a 14” snare approximately what is the diameter of the cardboard? Is the cardboard circle simple resting in the basket beneath the bottom head and rim? A baffle of sorts?
 

Beesting

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Beesting, I’m interested in your method and want to give it a try.

While you’ve explained it well, I want to make sure I understand you. On a 14” snare approximately what is the diameter of the cardboard? Is the cardboard circle simple resting in the basket beneath the bottom head and rim? A baffle of sorts?
CC - thx for the response. Measure the inside diameter of the bottom rim on your snare with a tape measure or ruler. Then cut a circle out of the cardboard which is a little smaller than the diameter you measured. Give yourself a 1/8 to 1/4 inch gap between the cardboard and the rim, all the way around. That way the cardboard won't be bound tight against the rim. After I get my snare drum set up, I reach underneath and make sure that cardboard circle is floating freely inside the bottom rim. Let me know if it works for you.

Brad
 

Pat A Flafla

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Sometimes if you do too much to get it sounding "perfect" to your ears, you're actually making it sound like a tub to the audience. I do all my best fine tuning on stage with the band blasting. The mix and the room are different every time (unless you're in a house band).
 

Seb77

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Interesting idea for reducing snare wire sound; you could also build a little baffle or curtain to block bottom sound.
In general I would say learn to tune and play that thing as it wants to sound with as little modification as possible. A brass snare naturally sounds bright and, well, brassy. Maybe it is not the sound you actually like best. I would get some transparent, neutral - sounding earplugs.
 

daveplaydrum

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I used one of these in the studio once. Gets the job done quick and easy. And the sound is very fat and dry and seems to lower the pitch quite a bit so you dont lose stick response by having to tune too low. When I got home I just cut a circle from an old head and it’s a super not sexy version of the same thing.

 

Cauldronics

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CC - thx for the response. Measure the inside diameter of the bottom rim on your snare with a tape measure or ruler. Then cut a circle out of the cardboard which is a little smaller than the diameter you measured. Give yourself a 1/8 to 1/4 inch gap between the cardboard and the rim, all the way around. That way the cardboard won't be bound tight against the rim. After I get my snare drum set up, I reach underneath and make sure that cardboard circle is floating freely inside the bottom rim. Let me know if it works for you.

Brad
I'd like to see a pic if you care to post one. I think I understand the setup from your description but I'm not sure.
 

Beesting

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I'd like to see a pic if you care to post one. I think I understand the setup from your description but I'm not sure.
Some pics for you. First one shows the snare side of the drum with the cardboard inside the rim. There is a 1/8 to 1/4 gap all around. 2nd pic shows the cardboard sitting in the snare stand. 3rd pic shows snare drum in place with the cardboard circle.
The cardboard floats freely so the snare wires can 'breathe'. You can experiment with any material you want.
 

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rculberson

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When I practice with ear inserts and phones, my Black Beauty snare has a pleasing fat sound. Without them, it sounds too sharp and ringy. I've loosened the snares some already. I'm using Evans Black Chrome head on batter side. What else can I do to get the fatter sound? Do I need a wood drum instead? What other head might help? Thanks.
Try a Big Fat Snare Drum for the times when you don't have the buds or phones in. That there's an MVP piece of equipment for me. It'll get you right where you wanna be.

EDIT: daveplay beat me to the punch. Somehow didn't notice your post. Sorry.
 


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