20 Best Snare Drum Reviews 2019 – Best Snare Drum Brands

Best Snare Drum & Best Snare Drum Brands

Best Snare Drum & Best Snare Drum Brands

The focal point of any drum kit today is the snare drum! Apart from being the focal point or the corner stone of the modern drum set or kit, the snare drum is the brain-child of the sound generated by and from any drum set. Thus, it must be unanimously accepted that the central role or the importance of the snare drum to modern drumming can simply not be over emphasized for the sake of it.

Related accessories: snare drum case, drum bag set, snare drum stands

What are the Best Snare Drums to Buy?

2) DW Collector’s series Brass Snare Drum

DW Collector's Series Brass Snare Drum
  • Beautiful Design
  • Highly-Rated
  • Industrial Standard
  • Powerful
  • Good Sound

1) Ludwig LB416BT Snare Drum

  • Professional
  • Famous Brand
  • Highly-Rated
  • Excellent Quality
  • Comfortable Playing

3) GP Percussion SK22 Complete Student Snare Drum Kit

GP Percussion SK22 Complete Student Snare Drum
  • Affordable
  • Double Brace Stand
  • Beginner
  • Good Quality

Fact Files of the Snare Drum

The various tones and styles associated with snare drums arise from the differences in the components materials used in their constructions. Traditionally, Snare drums or snare drums shells, as the case may be, are designed from either multiple plies which come from several varieties of trees or a singular ply of homogeneous wooden material. The glaring fact is that different types of wooden materials produce varying sounds by the material used.

Furthermore, as technological advances evolved with time, different innovations and intuitive craftsmanship continue to shape and dictate the material types, and quality from which snare drums are made—creating heavily diversified and versatile options and models to include, but not limited to, plastics, metals, and in some case, glass. Notwithstanding, each material can produce its unique signature sound.

Therefore, remember that the most important factor in choosing a snare drum is the differences in toner variations, an ace you must keep up your sleeve when shopping for a snare drum.

How to Choose a Snare Drum

Apart from the disparity in toner variation as discussed above, there are other ways you can exploit while planning how to purchase your snare drum. Below are some tips for you:

Your Budget

No man goes to the forest to cut down trees with a knife. As a cardinal rule, if you intend to have anything, you must be ready to pay for it, and this applies to snare drums as well. There are different varieties of snare drums in the market, with some selling as high as $500-$1000, while some others sell just below the $200 mark.

The fact is, although most of the top-notch snare drums are the most expensive ones, some low price product also perform quite well and even better in some cases. Bear in mind that price isn’t always a yardstick in measuring quality. So, consider what you really want by weighing how much you are willing to spend elsewhere and on a snare drum.

Become a Detective

The best way to get the best snare drum is to gather relevant information about what you are looking for. Go online, do extensive research, study feedback and comments from real time users of same or similar products, then form a viable opinion and draw the curtain on what you should get.

Sound and Finish

What are you looking for in a snare drum?

The sound is one important factor in determining the quality of a snare drum. Think about it critically, which brings us back to the issue of doing proper research on the product you want.

Ask yourself: will I get the desired sound after fine tuning the heads?

What do you want from your snare drum regarding style/design? Do you love the one that’s wooden, metal plastic or glass body? The choice is always yours to make at the end, snare drums with wooden bodies are best for warmer and relaxed sounds, while steel drums are for the loud and crazy sounds. Whatever, the choice is yours to make.

Size

What are you looking for, something small enough for your stature, or a medium size for some other purpose? Is it the large size for the marching band, theatre or stage show? Whatever the desired size, it will always be influenced by the purpose why you are paying for it.

20 Best Snare Drum Reviews and the Best Snare Drum Brands

1) Ludwig LB416BT Black Beauty Brass on Brass Snare Drum

Ludwig, the brand that’s regarded as one of the oldest name making waves for many years in the American drum market is back with this stunning and beautiful brass on the brass LB416BT snare drum.

As the name implies, the Ludwig LB416BT Black Beauty Brass on Brass Snare Drum features a solid black nickel plated brass shell, including a brass plated millennium (P86) strainer, brass plated die cast snare and batter hoops, as well as a brass, plated P33 butt and brass tube lugs.

The Ludwig’s black beauty brass on the brass snare drum is truly an all-around inspiring action pack drum to hear. It has an almost exceptional sound quality that defies all odds. The sound produced is wonderful and versatile. The drum is available in two different sizes – 6.5 x 14 and 5 x 14 inches—underlining its versatility.

Regarding play, the Ludwig black beauty brass on the brass snare drum is very comfortable and feels great to play. It is the perfect drum for every beginner and intermediate player.

2) DW Collector’s series Brass Snare Drum

DW Collector's Series Brass Snare Drum

The DW is one of Collector’s series Brass Snare Drums famous for their quality and intuitive end-user design. This set of the snare drum is made of the 1mm shell, which is a unique industrial standard for thin shells.

The DW comes with all-around plated nickel design, and this particular collector’s series of black nickel over brass has proven to be a powerful and versatile snare drum.

The DW has all the qualities that are needed in a snare drum—the body tone, volume, and response—the DW Collector snare is master of the art. The drum has great sensitivity to capture ghost notes with the resonating crack to cut through the wall of amps while on stage. Designed to handle a variety of musical applications and styles, this band provides the craved, classic studio rich, brass snare sound that’s suitable for rock, pop, jazz and so on.

DW Collector’s series of Brass Snare Drum offers its users a unique brightness and cut showcasing a decisive metallic toner characteristic, one that is aimed at achieving the best in sound quality.

3) GP Percussion SK22 Complete Student Snare Drum Kit

GP Percussion SK22 Complete Student Snare Drum

Here is a very good snare drum for the student, one that showcases top quality with limited price design to fit the student’s budget. This one coming from GP Percussion, a popular brand in the market seek to make life easier for the student, and that’s exactly what it has done with the stand of this band having the ability to reach up to the student’s waist—a world of comfort for the aspiring student musician or drummer.

The GP Percussion snare drums for the student comes with a case and drum stick for added reassurance of its durability. It also features the rubber pad you can simply put on the drum to muffle the sound if need be. Although the case didn’t come with wheels, this snare drum remains a great quality product.

The kit of the GP Percussion features a double braced stand and metal shell-drum measuring 14 inches in size. The 10 lugs snare drum also comes with a solid drum key for tuning the drum and sticks for playing.

There is an included nylon, padded, backpack featuring shoulder straps and carrying handles design for easy transport of the drum. The student practice is made perfect and progressive by using the rubber pad that muffles and control the level of sounds and tone being generated.

4) Tama S.L.P G-Bubinga Snare Drum

Tama S.L.P. G-Bubinga Snare Drum

Music is incomplete without drums, and the best is the type that brings out the glory of the beat and rhyme in any show—this is exactly what the Tama S.L.P represent. Made of natural quilted Bubinga with black nickel hardware hoop, the Tama S.L.P drum represents a bit more of a solid brand, which maintains relative popularity with advanced drummers.

The Bubinga S.L.P measures 6” x 14” inches in size, and it features a 12 ply, 10mm Bubinga wood–one of the best quality of wood providing an overall solid and durable wooden construction. This wonderful drum has a flanged hoops combination which measures 2.3mm, then followed by a low mass separate lugs that ultimately enable the Bubinga shell to resonate and disseminate natural sound.

Another remarkable feature of the band is that the snare throw off is adjustable on either side which provides a nice touch. You can even record with this drum and watch the sound engineer nodding his approval due to the rich natural sound it generates. Designed to suit musical styles like pop, rock, R&B, and country, the Tama S.L.P G-Bubinga is highly rated to be the best all-weather snare ever to grace the S.L.P series.

5) Yamaha Stage Custom Birch Snare Drum Cranberry Red

All Yamaha products are regarded as a top class since the brand has been in the business of producing top quality designs in the line of instruments.

Following in the footsteps of the highly successful Yamaha Stage Custom series, the redesigned, new Stage Custom Birch comes with awesome and significant upgrades and is rated among the best snare drum sets in the market. Yamaha comes with same thicker and solid shell with ply concept used on live custom. It has a fatty bearing with rounded edges offering more head to shell contact, which provides a robust sound.

The Yamaha Stage Custom Birch Snare Drum contains free style-lug which is typically associated with Yamaha’s top quality kit. The drum also features new bass drum spurs and Die cast claws, a ten lug snare, new tom depth, a nice badge, and a brand new pure white color option.

Yamaha Stage Custom Birch is the ideal snare drum for beginners, intermediate and professionals alike. The band provides nice color and finish that compliment the overall designs.

6) Pork Pie Snare Drum Black Nickel Plated Snare Drum

Blending beauty and quality is the hall mark of the Pork Pie Snare Drum Black. Pork Pie remains one of the few brands that can boast of fame and glory across the drum industry, especially with their unusual, solid and innovative designs. Taking the market by storm, the Pork Pie Snare Drum Black Nickel Plated Snare Drum features outstanding chrome plated brass tube lugs complimenting the nickel chrome plated finish that makes it very appealing to play.

The tube lugs design that accompanies this Pork Pie makes it a unique drum as the retro style tube lugs are responsible for traversing the entire depth of the drum’s body to enhance comfortable play. It also features a stunning black chrome finish brass shell. The sound sensitivity from this drum is breathtaking, coupled with an outstanding volume that makes the overall drumming projection a remarkable achievement.

Perhaps, what makes the Pork Pie Snare Drum Even thicker and popular is down to its intuitive nature. You don’t need to spend hours adjusting and setting it up. And unlike some other black snare drums, it doesn’t emit or disseminate unwanted harmonics, as it is easily controllable while showcasing style and elegance.

7) Ludwig LM402 Smooth Chrome Plated Aluminium Snare Drum

In the midst of the lords, the Ludwig brand construction continues to prove it’s the lord of all and master of the art of drum innovation. For something that sounds like the classic Van Halen and the legendary Led Zeppeline snares, the Ludwig LM402 Smooth Chrome Plated Aluminum Snare Drum is truly a class of its making.

The Ludwig LM402 is the snare drum that aptly defines the choice of the professional players. This snare drum provides the excellent sound while on the stage or inside the studio. Made of USA Aluminum shell, the Ludwig LM402 projects and produces bright crisp cutting sound, with the clear and perfect balance of competing for rich, resonant tone and versatile crack.

Ludwig LM402 is known for creating amazing rim shots, and a crisp cross stick. The most intriguing part of the low budget you are spending on this equally unbelievable snare is the ridiculous expressiveness and superior sensitivity with a pair of sticks. It is even more wonderful when it is discovered that even the most subtle single ghost note sound just like a delicate buzz roll all by itself.

All the way from ppp to fff, the drum is highly responsive like the heavens would unto the prayers of the saints, offering dynamic possibilities that easily dwarf the entire snare drums we have reviewed so far.

8) Snare Drum by Griffin

Are you looking forward to striking and achieving that brilliant attack you have been craving? You dream has finally come true as Griffin brings to you the snare drum that’s capable of providing that perfect sound that will give you rich and beautiful overtones, with a brilliant, powerful crack.

This Snare Drum by Griffin is an excellent choice for the newest member of the percussion school! The wood-grain design and appearance are so appealing. This drum features a black hickory PVC wrap, with high gloss and simple finish, creating a gorgeous and admirable craftsmanship that allows the beautiful deluxe instrument to be an added choice to any drummer’s collection.

This Griffin made snare drum comes with a top quality, quiet and smooth drum throw that offers flawless operation and fluid flow every time. The wonderful throw of this Griffin designed drum makes it easier for the user to mute, loosen or tighten the snares according to taste and preference, without locking up or failing.

The Griffin snare drum is an excellent choice for the beginner, student or professional musician who wants something more considerable in prize but measures well in quality. This is the band for you.

9) Pearl MCX Masters Series Snare Drum

Who doesn’t love something that mingles beauty, quality, and comfort together to define achievement and class? The Pearl MCX Masters Series Snare Drum is the definition of the best concerning style, appearance, and quality. The Pearl MCX Masters Snare Drum features an extremely beautiful and appealing 6-ply body construction that consists of 100% maple shell design.

The overall exterior construction of this snare drum was made possible using Pearl’s exclusive solid and superior shell technology, which carries a warrant that will last for many years. The Pearl MCX Masters series of snare drums are designed to provide and emit similar top and high-quality legendary sounds and resonance for which Pearl Masters is famous.

The Pearl MCX Masters has a decent sound controller that doesn’t overbear or overpower yet when you lay on it, it hit and reverberate like a block of concrete. The die cast hoops provide much powerful feel, but which doesn’t get off the mark as brass and steel drums do. Although it lacks the highest sensitivity of steel, it is versatile and reliable as a solid snare drum.

10) Tama Stewart Copeland SC145 Signature Snare

Tama returns with the Stewart Copeland version of its unique and competitive brand. As the name implies, this Tama was designed for the sole purpose to sonically replicate the famous and outstanding sound of Stewart Copeland which has been used and still being used on every Police hit.

The Tama Stewart Copeland SC145 Signature Snare Drum features an extra thick, 1.5mm chrome-plated brass design, with a triple flat bottom hoop and a die-cast batter hoop to define its overall finish. This model of the Tama Signature is a reliable reproduction of the snare drum Stewart used with the Police, and which is known as the drum of “mysterious provenance,” including everything from that period.

This Tama Stewart Copeland Snare Drum can penetrate what was known as the “dirge from the brass, and the ear-piercing sound of the bass guitar.” The ultimate penetrating ability of this sounding drum is because of the combination of the triple flanged bottom hoop and a die-cast batter hoop, together with a 0.5mm thick brash shell.

The Stewart Copeland is one of the greatest snare drums you can get today.

11) Spaun Acrylic Vented Snare Drum Coke Bottle

All snare drums are expected to produce unique sounds and reflect trusted and complete resonance that defines the true nature of a good and quality snare drum. The Spaun Acrylic Vented Snare Drum hasn’t failed in any of the aforementioned qualities. Although the Acrylic is relatively new in the market, its brand focus on quality is what it’s giving it more spotlight in the drum market.

Weighing 8.5 pounds, the Spaun Acrylic is a snare drum which features an Acrylic shell finish. The drum is known to generate a high and loud voice that is unique in its design, produced from a loud cracking attack, which also renders a darker and focused note.

Like its sister version, the Spaun Acrylic shares some quality and notable characteristics similar to the Spaun’s Cable Fiber snare drums, in areas like large round vents and round lugs which enables it to achieve breathtaking projections and eye-popping looks.

One good feature with the Spaun Acrylic is that it can be controlled to provide a detailed and serious sound that stands out from the crowd.

12) Pearl S1330B 13 x 3 Inches Black Steel Piccolo Snare Drum

Pearl comes back blazing with the Black Steel Piccolo Snare Drum which happens to be among the best selling snare drums today across the popular music world. This band provides a crisp, solid and brilliant attack with the best of projection that has led many players and musicians to add them to collections and make use of them in stages, school and in the marching band.

This Pearl Black Steel Piccolo Snare Drum measures 13 x 3 inches in size, and it’s used as both secondary and primary snare. This drum is available in a variety of choice that you can conveniently choose from—from brass to maple or steel shell—each provides a slightly different tone and voicing velocity, allowing the player to fine-tune the pitch to the level and style that suits his or her needs.

This particular Pearl S13330B is strictly sold as a component or individual piece, not as a complete set of the drum. In overall performance, the snare drum is amazing, works fine for classic rock and such other sound and style.

The snare throws off is well made, and moves easily. Transporting it is like a breeze, with a good looking finish and quality hoops; you can’t get it better elsewhere.

13) Gretsch Drums Artist Series S1-0613 MS

If you have been looking for a snare drum that features the unique Mark Schulman Signature Series badge, you have found it! It’s a well-known fact that Gretsch drums bearing the signature badge reflect the genuine spirit of the drummer after whom they and named.

Every single snare drum is designed to capture and express the unique playing style of each artist, from intricate sticking patterns to excellently placed backbeats. The Gretsch Signature Mark Schulman snare drums come in two dominant sizes, with chrome hardware and gloss natural finish that denotes the natural beauty of the band.

Featuring 10 lugs and die-cast hoops, the throw off of these bands are truly adjustable on every side pull with fixed butt plate. Also bearing 45 bearing edges and 42 strand snare wires, the Gretsch drums produces loud and powerful crack that is needed to attain the demanding playing style of Mark Schumal.

The Gretsch snare drum also comes with 9-ply maple shells laid with precision Bubinga stripes bearing black nylon tension rod washers, to sum up the overall quality and durability of this wonderful instrument.

14) Pacific Drums & Percussion PDS0814BMBM 8 x 14 Limited Edition Bubinga

The Pacific & Percussion is another fantastic drum, with everything that you need from a snare at an excellent price and quality. The Pacific Drum Percussion is a snare drum measuring 8 x 14 inches in size, is a limited edition Bubinga snare drum with the absolute powerhouse that is equipped with a thick and superior 18-ply shell capable of exploding eardrums of listeners and audience in any theatre.

The Pacific Drum Percussion features a 2-ply Bubinga on the inside, 14-ply maple in the middle, and another 2-ply Bubinga design on the outside. For the drum to keep working fine and tuned up nicely, the Pacific Drum Percussion features a double-turret-tube style chrome lugs that provide excellent tuning ability.

The sound generated by this snare drum makes it a top choice for the studio and stage performance. In overall performance, the Pacific PDS0814MBM is a great snare, very warming, and a with a powerful sound that provides absolute projection and high crack.

15) Ludwig Supralite Snare Drum

The more we look to sort out the best snare drum in the market and across the web, the more this name keeps popping up on our database, and so we have decided to look into this popular snare drum and its accompanying beats.

The Ludwig Supralite is regarded as one of the best snare drums in the market. Measuring 14 x 6.5 inches in size, the drum features a versatile, warm steel snare offering one of the best economical prices in the market.The Ludwig Supralite has a 1.5mm beaded steel stell which allows the user to achieve a wide tuning range, including a rounded attack with ample overtone.

The drum features a classic appearance and is equipped with stout chrome-over-brass lugs that compliment 2.3mm triple flanged hoops. Regarding performance, the Ludwig Supralite is a great drum with awesome settings. The drum provides a perfect balance, more sensitivity and brighter with good tuning range that will provide you with the sound you want.

16) Aileen Lexington Student Snare Drum

It is every student desire to have the best and quality drum, in particular for the matching band and practice play. The Lexington SD403S is designed using durable chrome and nickel.

Having the student in mind, Aileen Lexington Student Snare Drum offers precise craftsmanship that ensures correct use when the rods and lugs are fully set-ups. The Aileen Lexington delivers powerful, punchy and clear sound with an aggressive attack.

The Aileen Lexington is a distinctly crafted woodwind and brass instrument with snare wires that offers a nice bright sound that comes with no muffle, but it’s suitable for beginners. The Aileen Lexington kit includes drum sticks, drum keys, and straps. The drum measures 14 x 5 inches in size, with a hairline chrome finish.

The durable chrome and nickel construction of the Aileen Lexington makes this snare drum a unique option for the student player. The band has a great projection and is design to meet the need and requirement of every student band playing.

17) MAPEX MPML4800BMB MPX Series Maple Snare Drum

If you are looking for a fantastic tone, the Mapex snare drum is the right choice to get. The Mapex MPX line of snare drums was introduced as a way of complimenting the success story of the Mapex Black Panther Series of premium snare drums.

The Mapex MPX comes with eight new models available with maple, steel and birch shells, a function that provides an option of choice for the drummer.

The Mapex MPX features flanged steel hoops, a low mass lugs, fully adjustable throw-offs, and a solid Drumhead. The high crack and projection of the Mapex are made even better after some initial tweaking which normally results in a satisfactory sound generation. With both heads tuned to the same lug frequency, the Mapex drum has the much craved crisp snap with a unique sound that appears deep and dark after a little tune down.

The Mapex MPX snare drum is cosmetically beautiful. The snare mechanism is solid, and the hardware is very good. Overall, the snare is awesome, especially when the low price is fathomed into the quality and design of the Mapex MPX Snare Drum.

18) MAPEX BPBR465HZN Black Panther Sledgehammer Snare Drum

Some commitment and jobs call for serious and revolutionary heavy duty equipment. The Mapex Black Panther Sledgehammer Snare Drum features a hammered brass shell tube style lugs cylinder-drive strainer, boasting a piston style throw-off.

The Mapex Black Panther is a follow up on the Black Panther series which boast a unique sonic saver hoops and a micro lock snare tension adjustable on either side. It also features an adjuster on strainer and butt.

In terms of aesthetics, the name and look of this snare suggest it’s particularly good in one genre, but in reality, that is not the case. The Mapex Black Panther is a versatile snare drum, with a fatter and focused part, and it’s very warm.

The Mapex Black Panther Snare Drum plays the lightest of ghost notes and its highly responsive, with rim shots, clear and predictable with fantastic tuning range.

Also, the Mapex Black Panther Snare Drum has a good sound control, and the finish on this drum is very deep while appearing to have a ton of clear coat on it when it doesn’t. The drum tunes well, and the overall potential of the sledgehammer is that it can play a series of genres and which has successfully be achieved on many occasion.

19) ADM Snare Drum Set with Bag, Sticks, and Bags

Here is another quality snare drum every student can get at an affordable price, and it’s a drum produced by a reliable brand, which has been reliable for many of its good quality. Measuring 14 x 5.5 inches in size, the ADM snare drum is designed with birch shell as the primary body material, making it equal to other of its peers in the snare drum market.

ADM as a brand has shown its commitment to developing and offering of top quality snare drums for beginners or students interested in a band playing. ADM snare drum is a steel snare drum having a glossy black finish. The drum also has a powerful punch and aggressive attack. The 8-pics lug provides balance while aiding fine tuning.

The ADM snare drum is regarded as one of the best deal on the snare drum market. The sound that emanates from the drum is clear, even as the snare wire offers bright and rich sound devoid of muffle.

The overall construction of the ADM consists of a durable and high-quality chrome and nickel finish. Lastly, the ADM features a real, large and quality carrying bag with strap, drum key, and playing sticks, plus a 1-year warranty to wit.

20) MPX MPBW4350CDK 14-Inch Snare Drum, Black

Here is another Piccolo snare drum quality instrument from Mapex. The MPX MPBW4350CDK is a continuation of the MPX series known for high quality and extreme durability.

Designed with a popular shell measuring 7.2mm, and which is wrapped in an awesome black finish, the MPX MPBW4350CDK 14-Inch Snare Drum, Black features steel flanged hoops with chrome hardware finish that makes it suitable for the marching band in school, Brigade parade and in the theatre.

The band also features the renown Remo UC head adequately coated batter and with clear snare head for better balance and tuning. The MPX Piccolo styled snare drum is lovely, and all you have to do is just to unpack it, fine tune it a bit, and listen to the great sound that proceeds from it. The size is perfect for the student or beginner player, and the sound quality makes it a better product.

Another good quality aspect of this snare drum is that the user can easily tune it to give the exact sound needed for the occasion. Moreover, it’s not cheaply made. The Remo’s head is capable of generating that crack sounds when fully utilize regarding tuning.

Choosing the Best Snare Drum from the Best Snare Drum Brands

Without controversy, snare drums are solid and unique drum kits which aptly define, in many ways, the drum kit itself or the actual sound or music being generated from it. Consequently, most experienced drummers in the modern era take these instrument with all seriousness, making lots of input in thought and care towards planning what to buy and how to tweak it to produce the desired effect.

2) DW Collector’s series Brass Snare Drum

DW Collector's Series Brass Snare Drum
  • Beautiful Design
  • Highly-Rated
  • Industrial Standard
  • Powerful
  • Good Sound

1) Ludwig LB416BT Snare Drum

  • Professional
  • Famous Brand
  • Highly-Rated
  • Excellent Quality
  • Comfortable Playing

3) GP Percussion SK22 Complete Student Snare Drum Kit

GP Percussion SK22 Complete Student Snare Drum
  • Affordable
  • Double Brace Stand
  • Beginner
  • Good Quality

What to Do as a Beginner

If you are new to the world of snare drums or drumming as a whole, it is highly recommended that you go with products coming from the likes of Ludwig (the Ludwig LM402), the Yamaha, Griffin, GP, Pearl or the Mapex series.

Besides, the "GP Percussion SK22 Complete Student Snare Drum Kit" listed above is designed for beginner at an affordable price tag.

We are suggesting these brands, particularly the Ludwig because it is better to learn and get acquainted with the best snare drum so the journey would be easier in the long run. This is better instead of learning as a beginner with an inferior and overly cheap product that would only make it much difficult for you when it is time to face the real challenge of using professional snare drums.

In addition, you have to try as much as possible to get to know your snare drum properly; try to understand and master the basic skills of tuning and maintaining the drum to achieve a particular style or pattern of play.

By so doing, you will be accelerating your practicing time, steadily building your way up to the intermediate and pro level comfort zone.