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446281 000000488

Ludwig Supraphonic Black Beauty Snare Drum 6.5x14

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Ludgwig' legendary snare is a real beauty.The Ludwig Black Beauty snare drum is considered one of the most famous snares ever produced. Made from a s...Click To Read More About This Product

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OVERVIEW

A Ludwig tradition for over 70 years!

Ludgwig' legendary snare is a real beauty.The Ludwig Black Beauty snare drum is considered one of the most famous snares ever produced. Made from a single sheet of machine-drawn brass, the Black Beauty' shell boasts inimitable tone that is both metallic and warm. The snare' ease of tuning, Supra-Phonic snares, and classic P-85 snare throw-off provide the unrivaled tonal control demanded by professional drummers. The snare' antique black anodized shell, chrome hardware, and imperial lugs add to the Black Beauty' striking looks.This 6-1/2" x 14" snare is ideal for drummers looking for a snare with presence and volume. The Black Beauty delivers clear, hearty rimshots and deep projection, but still remains sensitive when played lightly.

FEATURES
  • Supra-Phonic snares
  • P85 throw-off
  • Seamless brass shell
  • Antique black anodized finish
  • Chrome-plated hardware
  • Imperial lugs
SPECIFICATIONS
  • 14 x 6-1/2" size only
Reviews
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Review Snapshot

by PowerReviews
LudwigSupraphonic Black Beauty Snare Drum
 
4.7

(based on 40 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (34)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (3)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (0)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (2)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (1)

77%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Sensitive (10)
  • Responsive (9)
  • Great sound (8)
  • Huge tone (7)
  • Versatile (7)

Cons

No Cons

Best Uses

  • Accompaniment (4)
  • Jazz clubs (4)
  • School bands (3)
  • Small venues (3)
  • Soundtracks (3)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Experienced (9), Professional musician (4)

Most Liked Positive Review

 

Possibly the best production snare drum... ever?

This is the one snare drum you can own and never get criticized for owning... while the standard features are nearly indentical to a Supraphonic costing far less, the plated brass shell is...Read complete review

This is the one snare drum you can own and never get criticized for owning... while the standard features are nearly indentical to a Supraphonic costing far less, the plated brass shell is unique and beyond compare. This can be special ordered with tube lugs (look better, but no different in sound) and die cast hoops (which do improve a lesser snare's sound, but make much less difference on the Black Beauty). In the listed configuration, though, the drum looks and sounds fantastic.
The Black Beauty I purchased was "standard," with supraphonic snares, P-85 throwoff, and Imperial Lugs with triple flanged hoops. That all said, "standard" on a Black Beauty is really super-deluxe compared to most other snares. The black nickel plated brass shell makes this snare sound exceptional; warm, sensitive, crisp, and not a bit of the sense that this is a "ringy" metal snare drum. All the "standard" features noted above -- even the tried and true P-85 -- work and sound flawless.
The Black Beauty exhibited no flaw to be found; no lug splay, no imperfection in the solid brass shell, not a spec on the gorgeous nickel finish. The slight heaviness of the brass shell (not too thick like most imitators) is the perfect weight for the perfect sound. I have a friend who plays and runs a studio, and has owned dozens of snares; he says this Black Beauty is the best recording snare he's ever heard.
Yes, they are damn expensive; but I have found few drummers that have ever complained about the cost, and who wouldn't own one if they could. Even (or perhaps especially) at its price point any serious drummer should have one of these in their stable of snares.

VS

Most Liked Negative Review

 

I expected better...

I've been playing for 20 years and owned dozens of snares. After about 30 minutes of light/medium-volume playing at medium-high initial tuning, the tension rods around where I hit were completely loose...Read complete review

I've been playing for 20 years and owned dozens of snares. After about 30 minutes of light/medium-volume playing at medium-high initial tuning, the tension rods around where I hit were completely loose (initially I evened out the tuning with a drum dial then fine-tuned by ear so I know that the rods were not loose to begin with). I read some reviews prior to buying that claimed this was an issue, but I figured that they were fringe cases. I am not a basher, I play with dynamics and care so for this to happen was quite surprising. I've only had this issue with one other snare ever, and it was a cheap Tama that I promptly got rid of. For what they charge for one of these drums, I expect better. I would also expect an aftermarket head set like Pearl puts on their Sensitone line, not a house-brand. Seems like the hardware on every other drum even half this price is noticeably better.

The drum sound is not bad but to my ears it wasn't anything special. it is not some pinnacle holy grail that I absolutely couldn't find anywhere else. The rims feel and look cheap, the tension rods feel cheap when tuning, it just feels like everything other than the shell could snap at any moment.

I bit the bullet and spent the money on what is framed as one of the best and most iconic brass snare drums of all time, and it may be iconic, but in my opinion (formulated from first-hand experience) it is not one of the best and certainly not worth the money. I am sending it back and getting a sensitone since they have never let me down in any way.

Reviewed by 40 customers

Displaying reviews 1-20

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(5 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Possibly the best production snare drum... ever?

By Kenneth Burton

from West Palm Beach, Florida.

Comments about Ludwig Supraphonic Black Beauty Snare Drum:

This is the one snare drum you can own and never get criticized for owning... while the standard features are nearly indentical to a Supraphonic costing far less, the plated brass shell is unique and beyond compare. This can be special ordered with tube lugs (look better, but no different in sound) and die cast hoops (which do improve a lesser snare's sound, but make much less difference on the Black Beauty). In the listed configuration, though, the drum looks and sounds fantastic.
The Black Beauty I purchased was "standard," with supraphonic snares, P-85 throwoff, and Imperial Lugs with triple flanged hoops. That all said, "standard" on a Black Beauty is really super-deluxe compared to most other snares. The black nickel plated brass shell makes this snare sound exceptional; warm, sensitive, crisp, and not a bit of the sense that this is a "ringy" metal snare drum. All the "standard" features noted above -- even the tried and true P-85 -- work and sound flawless.
The Black Beauty exhibited no flaw to be found; no lug splay, no imperfection in the solid brass shell, not a spec on the gorgeous nickel finish. The slight heaviness of the brass shell (not too thick like most imitators) is the perfect weight for the perfect sound. I have a friend who plays and runs a studio, and has owned dozens of snares; he says this Black Beauty is the best recording snare he's ever heard.
Yes, they are damn expensive; but I have found few drummers that have ever complained about the cost, and who wouldn't own one if they could. Even (or perhaps especially) at its price point any serious drummer should have one of these in their stable of snares.

(5 of 6 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

New Favorite Snare

By Quadrophonic73

from Tucson, AZ

See all my reviews

Comments about Ludwig Supraphonic Black Beauty Snare Drum:

I've been a drummer since 1997 and I've gone through a few snares. I've been partial to Tama in the past although I did like the Chad Smith signature snare. Anyway I was reading up on the Ludwig Supraphonic 402 and how both Keith Moon and John Bonham used them so I picked up the 6.5x14" Black Beauty snare. Assuming you tune well and use a quality Remo head, this is the closest you'll get to their sound without spending a bunch of money finding and restoring an old 402. I love this snare. You can get a variety of sounds based on the tuning and they're all great. I'm even impressed with the sound when playing on the rim (rim clicks). You won't be sorry if you buy this snare.I also do a lot of recording and the best snare sound I've achieved is this snare with an Audix I5. Try it for yourself.

(5 of 7 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

My Black Beauty just arrived, Oh Wow.

By Fun 2 drum

from NC

See all my reviews

Comments about Ludwig Supraphonic Black Beauty Snare Drum:

My 6 1/2 X 14 finally arrived and I immediately changed the batter head over to a Remo Ambassador coated. My stick never touched the stock head because I just didn't want to hear it that way. Tightened the new head to what I assumed would be about a medium tension and whacked it with a 5B. WOW!!! I couldn't believe how I could feel it in my gut while hearing that perfect ring with no bad overtones. My beloved other brand copper shell drum sounds like a pile of dog poo beside this awesome drum. Honestly you don't need tube lugs or die cast hoops for this thing to rock your world. If you're on the fence between this one and another, please do yourself a favor and buy this one, even if you have to save up for a while. I'm going to go play some more now.
Yes, it's fantastic value because you really get the best drum in existence. How much is that worth? A lot.

(4 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Everything you would expect

By John

from Brighton, MI

About Me Professional Musician

Verified Buyer

Pros

  • Great Sound
  • Responsive
  • Sensitive
  • Versatile

Cons

    Best Uses

      Comments about Ludwig Supraphonic Black Beauty Snare Drum:

      What can I say about the Black Beauty that hasn't been said? It's beautifully built, gorgeous to look at, and so capable.
      Tuned loose, it has a very nice tone, reminds me of early small jazz combos.
      Mid-tuning is what you hear on so many recordings...just the perfect tone and snap. And the volume to stand up and be heard through a wall of Marshalls!
      Tight tuning is super articulate...sounds like a Scottish field snare..nice!!
      It's now my go-to snare....love it!

      (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

       
      5.0

      ALMOST Perfect.

      By KyLe

      from Indianapolis, In

      About Me Professional Musician

      See all my reviews

      Verified Reviewer

      Pros

      • Great Sound
      • Huge Tone
      • Responsive
      • Sensitive
      • Versatile

      Cons

        Best Uses

        • Accompaniment
        • Jazz Clubs
        • Rock
        • School Bands
        • Small Venues
        • Soundtracks
        • Symphonies

        Comments about Ludwig Supraphonic Black Beauty Snare Drum:

        The greats you know and love used this snare for a reason. There is a reason it's as much as it is for those of you complaining about the price. There is one negative to this snare and that is it and it's that simple. They should use a nicer throw-off on such a prestigious snare. Don't get me wrong, still plays and tunes perfectly like you'd expect, but the throw off just feels like it doesn't belong, even gives off that vibe just looking at it. That is my only complaint and the throw off works perfectly. If you're a collector, or a serious drummer, all professional musicians will agree, this is a MUST OWN.

        (3 of 10 customers found this review helpful)

         
        2.0

        Not all it's cracked up to be!

        By GBPackfan12

        from Milwaukee, WI

        About Me Experienced

        Pros

        • Distinct Metallic Sound
        • Records Well
        • Responsive
        • Sensitive

        Cons

        • Flat Sound
        • Lugs Loosen During Play

        Best Uses

        • Recording

        Comments about Ludwig Supraphonic Black Beauty Snare Drum:

        There are definitely things I like about the sound of the snare, however, not for the price! It looks beautiful but the sound is very flat. I've had a very difficult time trying to get it to not be flat or dead sounding. Unless you tighten the lugs super tight, they'll loosen up on you while playing meaning you have to have it tuned super high, almost like a soprano snare. I'm experienced and have been playing for 18 years. I would not recommend this snare just because the price is insane for the sound. You can get other, cheaper snares to sound good.

        (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

         
        4.0

        Great Snare - Bad Throw-off

        By Joe Nocella

        from Wantagh, NY

        About Me Professional Musician

        See all my reviews

        Ask me a question

        Pros

        • Feels Right
        • Great Sound
        • Huge Tone
        • Looks Great
        • Responsive
        • Sensitive
        • Sound
        • Versatile

        Cons

        • Lug Gets Loose
        • P85 Throw Off Gets Stuck

        Best Uses

        • Jazz Clubs
        • Rock band

        Comments about Ludwig Supraphonic Black Beauty Snare Drum:

        I purchased this snare at a local store and after I brought it home, I noticed many small scratches on the shell. Ludwig took it back and sent me a new one in perfect condition. The snare sounds great. No complaints except for the P85 throw-off. I can't believe they use what feels likes a very cheap part on an expensvie snare drum. This drum should come with the P86 throw off for the price you pay.

        (3 of 10 customers found this review helpful)

         
        1.0

        Warped shell, cannot tune drum

        By bluebiscayne

        from Oregon

        About Me Professional Musician

        Pros

        • Looks good
        • Loud

        Cons

        • Poorly Made

        Best Uses

          Comments about Ludwig Supraphonic Black Beauty Snare Drum:

          The shell is warped which means some lugs have to be tightened much more than others resulting in awful overtones. I pretty much can't tune it no matter what head I use. If I dampen it enough, I'm able to get an ok sound. I expected a lot more out of this drum. I'm pretty disappointed in Ludwig.

          (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

           
          5.0

          Satisfied

          By ArcherCityTom

          from Texas

          Comments about Ludwig Supraphonic Black Beauty Snare Drum:

          I finally broke down and bought the 6.5" X 14" Black Beauty. I wish I hadn't waited this long. I now own 4 snares but this is at the head of line and may be the only snare I use. I am so impressed with the different tones I get with just adjusting stick strikes. So far, I have only opened the box, evened out the lug tension and played it. Wow! If you are on the fence, buy it. You will not regret it.

          (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

           
          5.0

          Still the Best

          By nowhereman

          from Nor-Cal

          See all my reviews

          Ask me a question

          Comments about Ludwig Supraphonic Black Beauty Snare Drum:

          I recently bought the 2009 Anniversary model for collection purposes, an LB419 and could'nt resist removing the 100yr. batter head to give it a run before packing it away. It sounded exactly like my 73 only I noticed they no longer have an Internal tone control. Which is good because no one every used them anyway. The only other difference was the shell did not have the snare beds either. My 1960s Supraphonic, as well as both the LM411 and the LB419 All have snare beds molded in the metal. I guess Ludwig decided this wasnt important. Now I completely understand why the black beautys of the 60s and 70s go for thousands at auctions.

          (2 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

           
          5.0

          Husband LOVES!

          By Mindle

          from Texas

          About Me Experienced

          Verified Buyer

          Comments about Ludwig Supraphonic Black Beauty Snare Drum:

          I bought this for my husband after hearing him talk about it for months. He LOVES it! I think I've been replaced as his favorite thing. :)

          (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

           
          5.0

          Supraphonic Superloud

          By JVD103

          from Austin, TX

          About Me Experienced

          Pros

          • Great Sound
          • Huge Tone
          • Responsive
          • Sensitive

          Cons

          • nothing
          • Unsure If It Is Versatile

          Best Uses

          • Loud music

          Comments about Ludwig Supraphonic Black Beauty Snare Drum:

          Wow! I play loud music and this thing cuts through everything. My guitar player plays through three 4x12 cabs and two heads, my bass player plays through two 4x10 orange cabs and it cuts through all of that at max volume. I'm unsure of how it fares with light or soft music but with Loud music, this is the best.

          (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

           
          5.0

          a snare for every kind of drummer

          By sticks111

          from upstate ny

          About Me Experienced

          Verified Buyer

          Pros

          • Great Snare Drumsounds
          • Great Sound
          • Huge Tone
          • Responsive
          • Sensitive
          • Versatile

          Cons

            Best Uses

            • Accompaniment
            • Jazz Clubs
            • School Bands
            • Small Venues
            • Soundtracks
            • Symphonies

            Comments about Ludwig Supraphonic Black Beauty Snare Drum:

            this snare has great sound with any adjustment.
            great pop and crack to it for rock,jazz,big band
            everything !!

            (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

             
            5.0

            6.5x14 Ludwig Black Beauty

            By Fyasko12

            from Minnesota

            See all my reviews

            Comments about Ludwig Supraphonic Black Beauty Snare Drum:

            This is definitely one of the greatest sounding snare drums I've ever played. If I had to use two words to describe this drum, they would be power and sensitivity. The Black Beauty has such a loud crack that makes you cringe every time, especially the 6.5x14 more than the 5.5x14. But it is also great for playing quiet, the sensitivity is so amazing, you barely touch the stick to the head and get great snare response. If you're a drummer that likes to hit hard but also cares about dynamics than this is the snare for you. The Black Beauty is pricey but it is worth every single penny. This snare has made drumming so much more enjoyable for me. In my opinion the Black Beauty is the best snare ever made.

            (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

             
            5.0

            Amazing!

            By Jp

            from Undisclosed

            See all my reviews

            Comments about Ludwig Supraphonic Black Beauty Snare Drum:

            I didn't buy my Black Beauty here but just wanted to say it's hands down the best snare on the market today. I owned a high end Brady snare and it didn't compare the to Black Beauty. It's loud and warm at the same time and has a nice focused sound. You can even hear all the warm brass qualities come through even playing along with a loud guitar next to you. I was shocked the BB sounded better than the Brady Block snare. No question about it ....you need to BUY the Ludwig Black Beauty and see for yourself!!!

            (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

             
            5.0

            Worth It

            By woody029

            from WI

            Comments about Ludwig Supraphonic Black Beauty Snare Drum:

            I stewed about buying this snare for several months. I finally pulled the trigger and bought it for myself for Christmas. Wow. It totally gave me the snare sound I've been looking for. This thing is so adjustable, you can have whatever you want. If you're on the fence, let me help you out - get this snare drum! You won't be sorry. It delivers and then some.

            (2 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

             
            5.0

            Great snare

            By steverok67

            from FL

            See all my reviews

            Comments about Ludwig Supraphonic Black Beauty Snare Drum:

            Already owning two Ludwig LM402 Supraphonics, I ended up getting this 14x6.5 Black Beauty in addition. I play in a very loud rock band, with 3 electric guitars, and was wondering if this drum would cut through all that noise better than the Supra. So far, it has, do to the extra cut and presence associated with the brass shell. I came across this drum in the store, and was so impressed and inspired by how it sounded and felt, with the Ludwig factory heads. I have since installed a Remo Powerstroke 3 batter head, which preserves the power and good qualities of the drum, while controlling the ringing very well, and plan to experiment with different heads. Compared to the Supra, I would say there is a little more "oomph" or bottom end behind the pop, with more ringing or cut. They are both great, and couldn't say one is better than the other. The BB is definitely fun and inspiring to play on. Seems to have a wide tuning range, rim shots are awesome, as are press rolls and ghost notes. If you have the dough, I highly recommend checking out the Black Beauty.

            (1 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

             
            4.0

            Excellent Snare

            By RJC

            from Haymarket, Virginia

            About Me Experienced

            See all my reviews

            Pros

            • Strikingly Beautiful

            Cons

            • Head Catches Brushes

            Best Uses

            • Accompaniment

            Comments about Ludwig Supraphonic Black Beauty Snare Drum:

            Will be a great jazz drum once Ludwig drumhead is smoothed out. Shouldn't need a break-in period to smooth out head in this price range. But, it's a beauty and crisp response is a delight. I play and sing in a jazz group and a smaller trio. In the smaller group, the audience sees the snare and soft brushes are most important. The head will smooth out eventually. Shouldn't have to replace it.

            (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

             
            5.0

            It's the best...it really is.

            By Sandman

            from Reading, PA

            About Me Experienced

            Pros

            • Beautiful
            • Great Sound
            • Huge Tone
            • Responsive
            • Sensitive
            • Versatile

            Cons

            • None

            Best Uses

            • anything

            Comments about Ludwig Supraphonic Black Beauty Snare Drum:

            This is, by far, the best sounding snare I've ever owned. It's easy on the eyes as well. It's one of those instruments that when you take it out of your carry case, people will stare.

            The only thing I could say is remotely close to a con is it's price. Hey, sometimes you get what you pay for... and this snare gives you more than your money's worth.

            (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

             
            4.0

            Best sounding snare I've played

            By tubebob

            from S.W. Pa.

            See all my reviews

            Comments about Ludwig Supraphonic Black Beauty Snare Drum:

            I Have owned many snares over the years from the Pearl Piccolo, Anton Figg, , Yamaha copper, Yamaha oak. This ones a keeper. Just the right amound of ring and "chunk" sound when you hit it, that excites you, and drives you to play your best. Best sounding snare I've used since I started playing drums. Love it.

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