Topic: Snare Drum Dampening  (Read 19379 times)

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Offline Steve "Smitty" Smith

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Snare Drum Dampening
« on: March 22, 2011, 06:50 PM »
I notice that most professional drummers I encounter either live or on video have no muffling on their snare drums.  I’m a little baffled by this because I can’t imagine not dampening the overtones on my snare with either a zero ring or, more typically for me lately, moon gel.

My main snare is a beautiful 14 x 5.5 exotic maple DW Edge series.  I use Evans coated G2 for the batter and a hazy for the snare side.  I like to think I tune pretty well.  But with no dampening, the overtones and ring just sound horrible to my ears.  Yet here are all these drummers playing with no dampening on their snares and sounding great.

What am I missing here?

Offline Jon E

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Re: Snare Drum Dampening
« Reply #1 on: March 22, 2011, 07:43 PM »
Lots of overtone disappears within the context of playing the whole kit.  And to a listener--who's not sitting right over the drum--a lot of overtone is nevr heard.

It took me along time to get over not muffling my snare.  Now I'm over it.  Drums will be drums.

Offline NY Frank

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Re: Snare Drum Dampening
« Reply #2 on: March 22, 2011, 07:56 PM »
It took me a while, too, to get over the fact that what I'm hearing is not what they're hearing.

At the same time, I have decided - I want some good tone, too.   :)   So, I still do things to muffle - and quiet - the snare.   

Still waiting for that magic snare that I can lay into without my ears bleeding.
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Offline Bob Dias

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Re: Snare Drum Dampening
« Reply #3 on: March 22, 2011, 10:28 PM »
Frank...Ear plugs. They keep the blood dammed up.

I usually use a moongell or 2 not so much for dampening the snare per say, but to attenuate sypathetic vibration.

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Offline Chris Whitten

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Re: Snare Drum Dampening
« Reply #4 on: March 23, 2011, 04:52 AM »
I almost always use some damping, even if it's an inch of tape barely touching the edge of the drum. Sometimes it can be a whole lot more tape.
The non-professionals I meet who are unhappy with their snare drums set-ups are similarly trying to emulate the players they've seen on video with no damping.
My motto is, if it sounds good..... it is good. Use your ears and damp (OR NOT!) to taste.

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Re: Snare Drum Dampening
« Reply #5 on: March 23, 2011, 11:11 AM »
Snare drum overtone can also help the drum sound more full when playing softly.

I"m a moon gel fan, because I can take it off or add it as the situation/music demands.  Same with the rolled gaffers tape Chris mentioned.

Offline Bart Elliott

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Re: Snare Drum Dampening
« Reply #6 on: March 23, 2011, 11:55 AM »
I rarely use dampening. It's not my default; I only use it when necessary.

Not to be insulting, please don't take my following statements with that mindset, but proper drum tuning is a key ingredient getting a great drum sound without the need of dampening. I'm not saying that if you use dampening you don't know how to tune a drum.

In most cases, one can tune a drum for the room and remove unwanted overtones, etc. That's not always the best solution, but it is possible 99% of the time.

Using dampening to affect the decay time of the drum is a completely different matter. However, you can alter the decay time or sustain through tuning as well ... especially with respect to the relationship (interval) between the batter and resonant/snare heads.

The type of drumhead used, as well as its age, plays a role in the overall sound, and whether you feel like you need dampening.

Lastly, the way the drum is struck will effect the decay and sustain. If the drumstick/mallet/brush comes off the drumhead quickly, you'll get the most out of the drum. The longer you leave the stick on the head (milliseconds), the more you compress the sound and decrease the decay time and sustain. Practicing and making use of various techniques is key to achieving the control necessary to achieve the desired sound. All of this holds true for playing the Bass/Kick drum with a pedal.

The sustain and overtones is what makes the drum sound and carry over distance. Removing the overtones reduces the projection of the drum, acoustically.

When I use dampening, it's typically because I'm trying to affect the projection of the drum ... not its sound. In the studio, when tuning hasn't resolved an issue, I use dampening. Miking the drums means you are picking up the sound close to the drumhead, not far away like what the ear hears. You may have to dampen the drums simply because the microphone doesn't handle the overtones, resonance or sustain very well.

Like Chris Whitten said, use dampening based on what you think sounds good and meets your needs. As I've already mentioned, there ARE ways to get a great sound from ANY drum without dampening.

It all comes down to having the time and ear to fine tune, the venue (size, dimensions, etc.) you are playing in, miking the drums or not, and the sound you are going for. Those factors will determine what path you need to take for each drum.

Offline Steve "Smitty" Smith

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Re: Snare Drum Dampening
« Reply #7 on: March 23, 2011, 01:21 PM »
No offense taken at all.  This is exactly the discussion and guidance I’m looking for.  I suspected that proper tuning was the answer.  I’m pretty religious about changing my snare head.  I guess I’ve become so accustomed to a muffled snare that the ring from an un-dampened snare (and it is very much an unpleasant ringing sound to my ears) just sounds wrong to me.

Offline Chris Whitten

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Re: Snare Drum Dampening
« Reply #8 on: March 23, 2011, 06:02 PM »
The type of drumhead used, as well as its age, plays a role in the overall sound, and whether you feel like you need dampening.

Yes, many people use pre-dampened heads, especially for toms and bass drums.
I guess I would probably do that for a tour, when I knew what the drum sound was going to consistently be for the music.
Recording-wise I like to choose very lively, fully sustaining heads, because it's easier to back off the overtones and sustain with tape, then wrestle more liveliness out of a pre-damped head.

Quote
When I use dampening, it's typically because I'm trying to affect the projection of the drum ... not its sound. In the studio, when tuning hasn't resolved an issue, I use dampening. Miking the drums means you are picking up the sound close to the drumhead, not far away like what the ear hears. You may have to dampen the drums simply because the microphone doesn't handle the overtones, resonance or sustain very well.

Exactly, I agree with your last point.  ;)
On your first point I find I'm the opposite.
I tune a snare drum to fit with the needs of the music 100% of the time. This is where I think damping becomes important. If I find the right tonality for the snare drum in a recording situation and the producer says the sound is perfect but there's just a little too much overtone or discordant ring going on, I find a small piece of tape can dampen down the unwanted frequencies while preserving the tone and pitch the producer likes.
Of course the snare drum is often a single entity. If I have two to four toms sounding great, but one has an errant harmonic going on, I'm much more likely to experiment with the tensioning to dial out the harmonic than reach for the tape, as toms should usually sustain for a similar length of time, or at least in relation to their size and pitch.
If one tom is ringing longer than the others, then I often reach for the tape.

Offline NY Frank

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Re: Snare Drum Dampening
« Reply #9 on: March 23, 2011, 07:26 PM »
...
Lastly, the way the drum is struck will effect the decay and sustain. If the drumstick/mallet/brush comes off the drumhead quickly, you'll get the most out of the drum. The longer you leave the stick on the head (milliseconds), the more you compress the sound and decrease the decay time and sustain.

At recent gigs, I noticed for the first time that, depending on the tune, I was altering tone and decay by digging into the snare and leaving the stick down.     It Sounded decent to my ears, but I was wondering if I was doing something technically very wrong.   

When I was taking lessons as a little guy, my teacher definitely did not get into something like that.    Is it considered technically correct to roll off some decay by laying into the snare and keeping the stick down?
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Offline Chris Whitten

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Re: Snare Drum Dampening
« Reply #10 on: March 23, 2011, 08:57 PM »
I don't think anything is incorrect unless it hinders your playing, or holds back your potential, or potentially injures or has a negative health impact.
Of course, 'incorrect technique' often does hold up your potential for improvement, and can cause injury fairly quickly - but sometimes doesn't show up for years.
So caution.
Having said that, employing a certain technique, even unorthadox, for a brief effect will most likely have no negative impact.

Offline Chip Donaho

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Re: Snare Drum Dampening
« Reply #11 on: March 24, 2011, 07:41 AM »
I don't think anything is incorrect unless it hinders your playing
I agree with Chris. You either like it or someone in the band don't like it. That's what it really comes down to. Does it sound right for the music?
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Offline Bob Pettit

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Re: Snare Drum Dampening
« Reply #12 on: March 30, 2011, 08:10 AM »
Does any high-end snare drum have built-in internal mufflers anymore?

My old chrome Superphonic Ludwig has an internal muffer. Do they come like that anymore? Or has the modern fads dictated we all must use Moongel or some such?

Personally that internal muffler was the Holy Grail for a kid like me who started on a beginners snare without one. I had a lead weight I used on my first snare drum and hated it. I still don't like sticking stuff to the top head.

Something that I invented is to rough up a spot on the underside of the batter head and puddle silicon glue/caulking. It dries soft and rubbery and sticks well (if you sandpaper the spot).

,..

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Re: Snare Drum Dampening
« Reply #13 on: March 30, 2011, 04:20 PM »
I dont think i could get away with zero dampening, not that id prefer that but generally its 1/2 a square of toilet tissue folded twice with a small square of gaffers tape to secure it to the head usually around 1:00. For me this allows the drum to have some resonance without to much out of harmonic ringing. Sometimes if you look real close youll see players using zero rings or may have made one themselves from a clear head to their own specs. I cant say ive ever heard a snare that needed zero muffeling.....(for me) at least some small amount.

Offline NY Frank

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Re: Snare Drum Dampening
« Reply #14 on: March 30, 2011, 09:00 PM »
I probably shouldn't admit this publicly, but in my current tour of duty, I have a bass drum felt strip underneath my snare batter head.   I know that's a cardinal sin for most, but for me personally, it's the right thing at this point in time.         ducking.
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Offline Mister Acrolite

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Re: Snare Drum Dampening
« Reply #15 on: March 30, 2011, 10:48 PM »
I think most drummers would remove 90 to 100% of the muffling they use on their snare drums if they went out into the audience and listened to what the drum sounded like out there.

Un-miked I use no muffling. Ever. Miked for live gigs, I use a tiny bit of duct-tape, if needed. And it's not needed very often. In the studio is the only situation where I frequently need to muffle, but even then we're just talking about small pieces of duct tape.

But tuning and muffling are highly personal things. Bottom line, you want to be happy and excited about YOUR sound. If muffling accomplishes that for you, muffle up!   ;D
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Offline Jon E

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Re: Snare Drum Dampening
« Reply #16 on: April 02, 2011, 08:02 AM »
AWAY! AWAY WITH YOU FRANKY! DO NOT DARKEN THE CAFE'S DOORSTEP ANY LONGER!!!  ;)


and on the lack of internal mufflers these days..... was that somehow linked to concert snare drums being pulled into the "rock" drumming world, and then being played louder/harder, and then being mic'd and whatever??  just jumped into my head.  Who do we know with a Ludwig connection that can get us some answers???  Hmmmmm....

Offline NY Frank

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Re: Snare Drum Dampening
« Reply #17 on: April 02, 2011, 08:27 AM »
 :'(


 ;D
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Paicey

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Re: Snare Drum Dampening
« Reply #18 on: April 02, 2011, 12:33 PM »
Ive read all the responses to see everyones view point. I get the 50 feet away thing opposed to near field. It seems (for me) the deeper the drum and lower the tuning the less muffeling i tend to use....sometimes zero. These is alot to consider here, shell material...tuning....heads used, you know the list. Unmiked which is very rare for me i will jack the toms up a bit for that projection but being a fan of a great R&B cracking snare to much ring can really bug me. The same goes for no resonance at all. Once my drum (snare) has ALL of the ring taken away im just as bothered by that.....generally. I DO love Brufords ring on round about though, talk about character.

Offline Bob Pettit

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Re: Snare Drum Dampening
« Reply #19 on: April 02, 2011, 02:26 PM »
I checked on Ludwig internal mufflers and the Superphonic no longer comes with one. Funny, it was standard equipment back when Bonham played them ... don't know if John Henry actually used his, but surely his LM402 had a built in muffler. I seem yto remember reading he did not like it, and also would not play the chrome covered bronze, it had to be an aluminum shell.

I agree with the sentiment above that the damping has to be 'just so'.... not too much, not too little, hence the usefulness of a variable tension built in internal muffer.

..


Offline Bart Elliott

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Re: Snare Drum Dampening
« Reply #20 on: April 02, 2011, 02:34 PM »
Internal dampeners/mufflers are no longer used because they choke the sound. When you strike the drum, the stick pushes the head down while the internal dampener/muffler is pushing up. Also they tend to be noisy when disengaged.

Internal dampener/mufflers haven't been used in new drums for well over twenty years.

Offline NY Frank

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Re: Snare Drum Dampening
« Reply #21 on: April 02, 2011, 04:46 PM »


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Offline Bart Elliott

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Re: Snare Drum Dampening
« Reply #22 on: April 02, 2011, 05:48 PM »
Well, I guess I stand corrected if those are current Ludwig Snare drums. Why they would do that, I have no idea.

Offline Buddy Bryan

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Re: Snare Drum Dampening
« Reply #23 on: April 07, 2011, 09:03 PM »
It took me a while, too, to get over the fact that what I'm hearing is not what they're hearing.

At the same time, I have decided - I want some good tone, too.   :)   So, I still do things to muffle - and quiet - the snare.   

Still waiting for that magic snare that I can lay into without my ears bleeding.


Same here. I play mostly small to large clubs. Drums are usually mic'ed. I tune pretty good and try to avoid any muffling except for the kick. I have a lot of snare drums (35). Lately I have been using either a Ludwig Supra 6.5x14 or a Black Beauty. Both sound great. Both have some ring/overtone. It's part of the sound. Most sound guys love them. I never dampen them live. I can see maybe in a studio doing it though.

Offline Chris Whitten

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Re: Snare Drum Dampening
« Reply #24 on: April 07, 2011, 09:39 PM »
Well, I guess I stand corrected if those are current Ludwig Snare drums. Why they would do that, I have no idea.

I imagine as a retro cue.
I agree with you though, the internal damper has been consigned to history by improved methods of control.

Offline Chris Whitten

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Re: Snare Drum Dampening
« Reply #25 on: April 07, 2011, 09:43 PM »
Lately I have been using either a Ludwig Supra 6.5x14 or a Black Beauty. Both sound great. Both have some ring/overtone. It's part of the sound. Most sound guys love them. I never dampen them live.

As I say, for me it really depends on the circumstances and the sound you need.
In louder bands with a wall of guitars, snare ring tends to disappear into the sonic soup and any damping will render a snare drum small and dead.
In more exposed situations, with a noticeable ring your ear can become focussed on the snare, rather than the kit as a whole, and in those scenarios I do find the ring really starting to annoy me.

Offline Bob Pettit

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Re: Snare Drum Dampening
« Reply #26 on: April 09, 2011, 11:21 AM »
Internal dampeners/mufflers are no longer used because they choke the sound. When you strike the drum, the stick pushes the head down while the internal dampener/muffler is pushing up. Also they tend to be noisy when disengaged.

Internal dampener/mufflers haven't been used in new drums for well over twenty years.

Regarding your comment that about the internal damperer pushing up and choking the sound, well now that's the point of them really, they dampen the sound and since they are fully adjustable you can go very slight to heavy, or none at all, just as you like.

As far as internal mufferers being noisy, if it rattles there is a mechanical problem. If they are working properly, a well designed muffer like a Ludwig would challenge even the most discerning connoisseur to hear if it changed the sound. Remember, vintage Ludwig LM402s like Bonham played all came with these devices as standard equipment. Sometimes vintage sound, like the sqweek on a Speed King, is not 'perfect'.

I imagine as a retro cue.
I agree with you though, the internal damper has been consigned to history by improved methods of control.

And history tends to repeat itself .... just wait until a new generation starts demanding internal muffers 'like Bonham had'.

Fads come and go in the drumming world just like anywhere else.

 :)


Offline Bart Elliott

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Re: Snare Drum Dampening
« Reply #27 on: April 09, 2011, 12:38 PM »
Regarding your comment that about the internal damperer pushing up and choking the sound, well now that's the point of them really, they dampen the sound and since they are fully adjustable you can go very slight to heavy, or none at all, just as you like.

And as people finally discovered, that is a really bad way to go about it. This is why Yamaha (and a few other companies) designed the external dampener which clipped onto the rim, pushing on the drumhead, like the internal dampener, but from the top. I used to own a full set of those Yamaha clip-on dampeners.

With the internal dampener, the drumhead is being pushed in the opposite directly of the initial attack of the drumstick. At least the external dampeners gave the opportunity for the drumhead to vibrate a bit more.

The internal dampener is like pushing someone in a swing. If you are pushing from behind, while at the same time you got someone holding the swing from the front, you're not going to get much for your efforts. Sure, you can adjust it to just lightly touch, but you are still pushing against the drumhead from the opposite direction; it doesn't allow for much membrane vibration.

The external dampener is like pushing that same swing with no one in front of the swing blocking you, but after you push the swing you don't move out of the way, so the swing hits you, thus stopping or reducing the swing's movement.

That is what the internal dampener went bye-bye. If you used it lightly, it rattled and was noisy. If you tightened it down, you choke any membrane vibration from the initial start.

Offline Bob Pettit

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Re: Snare Drum Dampening
« Reply #28 on: April 09, 2011, 06:05 PM »
That is what the internal dampener went bye-bye. If you used it lightly, it rattled and was noisy. If you tightened it down, you choke any membrane vibration from the initial start.

Each to their own on what sounds best, but don't mislead us that internal damping devices normally rattle and are noisy. I've heard many snare drums with these devices and have encountered only one that rattled .... and it had a mechanical problem which was able to be fixed.

A well designed device such as the Ludwig internal muffer on a Supersonic does not normally rattle nor produces any audible 'noise'.

It is understandable in an era obsessed with suspended mounting systems, matched shells, enhanced resonance, and letting the true voice of the drum come through, that the internal muffer would be relegated to the trash can. Judgement can be colored by the hype.
"Yes boys and girls, you need a new snare drum."



..

Offline Chris Whitten

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Re: Snare Drum Dampening
« Reply #29 on: April 09, 2011, 07:48 PM »

It is understandable in an era obsessed with suspended mounting systems, matched shells, enhanced resonance, and letting the true voice of the drum come through, that the internal muffer would be relegated to the trash can. Judgement can be colored by the hype.

Wow, you're making some huge claims there.
Firstly, I never had a good experience with internal dampers. You keep mentioning Bonham. Did he ever use the internal damper on his Supra. I'm guessing you had to be there to know.
For me it's an inflexible device. It always dampens in the same spot on the head. When I record, I find I get the best results damping the last 1/4" at the very edge of the head.
Also, with lower tunings the internal dampers tended to raise the pitch of the drum when engaged. I also found that high pressure levels and vibration caused many internal dampers to slowly release, giving you the perfectly dampened drum for the intro of a song, and too much ring by the outro. The same issues did create a metallic rattle from time to time.
OK, you lay some of the blame for that at my door (bad use of damper, bad maintenance os damper). I would say in reply, I get the perfect amount of damping everytime with a piece of tissue and a tiny piece of tape (usually costing me nothing). So why would I opt for a temperamental solution when I already have the perfect solution?
As to hype in modern product design.......
All the modern innovations I've adopted have been as a result of my desire to get the best out of my equipment. I still use RIMS because the sound is tangibly better to my ears.
Having started as a pro at the end of the 70's, when drum kits were hardly different to what they were 10, 20 years earlier, my drums evolved in response to the demands of the workplace.
I once got a call from one of the most revered record producers in London. I took my beautiful Gretsch kit to the session. I had my sound down, we set up the mics and we were up and running shortly afterwards, except..........
The producer claimed to hear an unwanted metallic quality in the drums. I couldn't hear it, so was at a loss to change anything. We all hunted and hunted around for quite a bit of time (time is money in the studio). In the end, as you might have guessed, it turned out every lug on the Gretsch drums encased a spring. The springs tended to resonate with the drum. Removing each spring on the session just was NOT an option. This was well before the internet, and no one had told me about this design issue with Grestch. I'd used the drums on several album sessions before and never had a problem. I was viewed as inexperienced and unprofessional by everyone else at the session (yeah...... humiliating). I never worked with that producer again.
So this is a long way of saying, not every vintage design idea is great. And not every modern improvement is 'hype'. If you work in potentially career damaging situations regularly, you'd better keep abreast of the latest innovations and keep your gear up to date and working flawlessly.

Offline Bart Elliott

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Re: Snare Drum Dampening
« Reply #30 on: April 09, 2011, 09:42 PM »
Each to their own on what sounds best, but don't mislead us that internal damping devices normally rattle and are noisy. I've heard many snare drums with these devices and have encountered only one that rattled .... and it had a mechanical problem which was able to be fixed.

A well designed device such as the Ludwig internal muffer on a Supersonic does not normally rattle nor produces any audible 'noise'.

It is understandable in an era obsessed with suspended mounting systems, matched shells, enhanced resonance, and letting the true voice of the drum come through, that the internal muffer would be relegated to the trash can. Judgement can be colored by the hype.
"Yes boys and girls, you need a new snare drum."

[insert real name here], please do not accuse me, on my own forum, that I am willfully choosing to mislead people. If you don't agree with me, fine ... debate all you want ... but don't you dare accuse me publicly like you just did.

You experiences are your experiences.

My experiences and comments are based on my experiences in the music industry, which includes university research and study in the areas of physics as it relates to music and sound, a former drum shop, thirty plus years as a professional studio musician and performer, etc.

The math and physics about the internal dampening is what it is ... like it or not. You chose to look over that part of my statement and focus on the "noise" aspects, which I never implied or claimed was with every drum that had internal dampening. It was and is an issue, whether it be 10% or 90% of those drums makes no difference to me. The noise potential is one of the factors that played a role in the vast majority of companies dropping the mechanism.

Don't shoot the messenger just because you don't like the message.

Offline Bob Pettit

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Re: Snare Drum Dampening
« Reply #31 on: April 09, 2011, 11:34 PM »
[insert real name here], please do not accuse me, on my own forum, that I am willfully choosing to mislead people. If you don't agree with me, fine ... debate all you want ... but don't you dare accuse me publicly like you just did.

You experiences are your experiences.

My experiences and comments are based on my experiences in the music industry, which includes university research and study in the areas of physics as it relates to music and sound, a former drum shop, thirty plus years as a professional studio musician and performer, etc.

The math and physics about the internal dampening is what it is ... like it or not. You chose to look over that part of my statement and focus on the "noise" aspects, which I never implied or claimed was with every drum that had internal dampening. It was and is an issue, whether it be 10% or 90% of those drums makes no difference to me. The noise potential is one of the factors that played a role in the vast majority of companies dropping the mechanism.

Don't shoot the messenger just because you don't like the message.

I did not say (nor think) you 'willfully' mislead.... I know you believe (passionately it seems) that internal mufflers are noisy, and now that you clarify, admit they aren't that way all the time, thanks ...

As I said, it is my experience these mufflers do not normally rattle, especially when engaged. A young person without actual knowledge of internal muffers could have taken your earlier words (be mislead by them) to mean that there is no use for the device, case closed. IMO, they were a viable method to dampen snare drum ring in vintage gear, and should still be an option today.

..




Offline Bart Elliott

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Re: Snare Drum Dampening
« Reply #32 on: April 10, 2011, 12:06 AM »
I did not say (nor think) you 'willfully' mislead.... I know you believe (passionately it seems) that internal mufflers are noisy, and now that you clarify, admit they aren't that way all the time, thanks ...

As I said, it is my experience these mufflers do not normally rattle, especially when engaged. A young person without actual knowledge of internal muffers could have taken your earlier words (be mislead by them) to mean that there is no use for the device, case closed. IMO, they were a viable method to dampen snare drum ring in vintage gear, and should still be an option today.

And you continue to look over the facts regarding pressing a dampener up into the drumhead. Forget the noise factor, address the physics behind the device. That alone does show that it is NOT a good thing, which is why it is no longer used.

I have internal mufflers in my vintage drums; I left them there to maintain their value. But I also have other drums that had internal dampeners which I removed because of the noise factor and because of the flaw from a PHYSICS perspective.

No one said that it doesn't work, nor did anyone say it wasn't a "viable" method for dampening. What I AM saying, to all players (young or old) is the internal dampener is not the most effective or productive way to dampen a drum. That is why it is no longer used by the majority of the drum manufactures.

As I mentioned before, but I guess I need to mention it again, the WAS an EXTERNAL VARIABLE DAMPENER on the market three decades ago. It too is all but extinct. This was an after-market device that could be placed on any drum. It did the same thing that the internal dampener did, EXCEPT that it worked WITH the physics.

So if you like the sound of your internal dampener, and like how it works, great, use it.

Offline Chris Whitten

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Re: Snare Drum Dampening
« Reply #33 on: April 10, 2011, 05:11 PM »
^^^^^^^

Yep, I don't think anyone has suggested an internal damper can't work.
Personally I find there are cheap/free, but importantly more flexible solutions.
I think the issue is your rather out there claim that many design improvements are 'hype'.
Maybe some are, but the ones that have stuck around for 20 years...... probably NOT.

Offline Tim van de Ven

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Re: Snare Drum Dampening
« Reply #34 on: April 13, 2011, 07:57 PM »
I have a "vintage" Premier 2000 snare drum; I really like it. I use it on a number of recordings and I take it out on the road with me to play shows, as well.

I removed the internal muffler because when it was engaged, it gave me a dead spot on the drum (it muffled, all right, but only in the spot that it touched, apparently). When it was disengaged (and the drum sounded better) it seemed superfluous to me. So, out it came.

Offline MOUSE

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Re: Snare Drum Dampening
« Reply #35 on: April 15, 2011, 05:06 AM »
Quote
   I think most drummers would remove 90 to 100% of the muffling they use on their snare drums if they went out into the audience and listened to what the drum sounded like out there.


My train of thought as well. For all of the kit.

I have one of the external dampeners and it is useful in quiet gigs likes background playing at a wedding or recording. Generally i use nothing but a reverse dot head and tune the drum. I just added a  Pearl Chad Smith to my equipment and it's rings like hell from the throne but when playing in the band overtones are absorbed and cooks out front for rock.

A classic example of nil dampening is large marching band bass drums, listen to them played solo they ring something terrible, and then in a band situ, you will be surprised how that ringy goes to punchy.

Tape/gels/ o rings,  etc  to me are  just something you don't need to be fiddling about with when you are gigging.
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Offline Hank Gagnon

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Re: Snare Drum Dampening
« Reply #36 on: April 16, 2011, 06:43 PM »
on my snare i use an ec2 with an o-ring. it also has a built in dampener. the rack toms and floor have o-rings. i'm always messing with the tuning. right now they sound good. i've seen top shelf drummers with no dampening and wonder if i'm doing something wrong because i do.

Offline Ryan Culberson

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Re: Snare Drum Dampening
« Reply #37 on: April 16, 2011, 07:31 PM »
on my snare i use an ec2 with an o-ring. it also has a built in dampener. the rack toms and floor have o-rings. i'm always messing with the tuning. right now they sound good. i've seen top shelf drummers with no dampening and wonder if i'm doing something wrong because i do.

If your drums sound good to you, then you are not doing anything wrong! 

Many top shelf drummers also choose to use dampening.  It's just a tool to obtain the sound they want for any given musical situation. 

"Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind" 

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Offline Chris Whitten

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Re: Snare Drum Dampening
« Reply #38 on: April 16, 2011, 09:49 PM »

Tape/gels/ o rings,  etc  to me are  just something you don't need to be fiddling about with when you are gigging.

As I keep repeating (why?), it really depends entirely on the circumstances.
There are no rules!!!
There is no rule you should put tape on your snare batter, and vice versa. Well ok, there probably is one rule - you should try to sound good, as good as you can. And with that in mind I quite often employ some damping (often tape) on my snare batter, both live and for recording.
The  beauty opf tape is that if the recording engineer or front of house sound person tells me they love the snare sound, but it's a little too dry, too dead, 5 seconds later the tape is gone!

 

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