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  1. Less is more

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike St.Clair View Post
    You would think they employ knowledgeable, passionate, drummer people at Ludwig. I guess quite a few companies aren't going to listen to passionate consumers though. I like hearing that certain companies listen to their retailers and make changes as needed.
    With some knowledge of marketing, I can say that Ludwig is acutely aware of all this passion. And that is precisely why it keeps things exactly as they are, and have been, for the last 40-50 some odd years, when it comes to Black Beauties, and its other two iconic snares: the Supra and the Acro.

    What other snare drums provoke this same level of discussion, just on this forum alone? Any time someone posts about one of these three Ludwig drums, it almost always sets off a llooonngggg discussion.

    Why would you mess with that, if you were Ludwig? Consumers don't always know or demand what is best. Ludwig snares do not pile up on shelves or in factories. There is sometimes a waiting period, again, probably artificially manufactured to ramp up the allure of these highly profitable drums. No other snare drums have the same mystique, or history in recordings of pop and rock music, as Ludwig snares. So the company will never change a thing about any of these drums.

    I think the chronic complaints about the P85 are overdone. I have an older one. It's not great, but it works. Would you drop a new engine in an otherwise original Model T just because it might go faster? I doubt it.

    I own a rare COB Supra with cut badge from around 70-71. These sell on eBay for about $700-800, even in this economy. I don't think it sounds any better than my steel Sensitone. It definitely does not sound as good as my Pork Pie Big Black Brass. But I wouldn't part with it, unless I really got desperate. That's mystique. That's why these drums aren't gonna change.

  2. rockin' all the way

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    Guess I might try those die casts on my brass snare.
    BTW it's not a BB its a Steve Ferone sig snare and I love the sound.
    I honestly think that with the BB it's like with alot of products, if you keep talking about it and praise it, eventually alot of people for the sake of being part of this group, will do the same.
    And then it becomes a hype. (I once said to a drummer I'm not fond of Sabian and he looked at me, saying : WHY CAN'T YOU NOT BE? ALMOST EVERY OTHER DRUMMER IS!!!!!!)
    I'm not saying the BB isn't up to it's reputation, but to me it's definetely not the "über" snare, the one all must have snare.
    If you are willing to spend the money because you love the sound, fine.... but don't buy a BB because of the fact alot of the drummers out there like it.
    Just my humble opinion.
    Mapex Orion mapa burl, Pearl Steve Ferone sig snare
    Meinl , Paiste cymbals

  3. Registered User

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    There has been alot of very relavant points presented here in this thread. There does appear to be a certain mystic created when it come to these BBs. There really isn't much more to be said regarding them. The drum, to some, is worth the money asked. Whether that amount is justifed is open to continued discussion. Only Ludwig knows for sure why things are kept the way they are. One would think a 6.5 Brass shell would only produce 1 distictive sound. I agree I can't imagine that a seamless shell would produce that much of a quality sound. Sure, hoops, heads, will all contribute to sound, but with the points mentioned in this thread, it sure raises questions to me as to whether I am willing to shell out the 700 bucks for this drum. I admit that I have owned Ludwig snare drums with the 85 strainer and I just hated it. It just seemed so cheap and hard to keep adjusted. If I was to put the money out, it would be with the 86 strainer. Thanks to all for your input, it was definate food for thought

  4. Drummist

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    Quote Originally Posted by phips View Post
    Not easily.
    cogito ergo Bebop a Lula

  5. Drummist

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike St.Clair View Post
    You would think they employ knowledgeable, passionate, drummer people at Ludwig. I guess quite a few companies aren't going to listen to passionate consumers though. I like hearing that certain companies listen to their retailers and make changes as needed.
    Rants aside, I am sympathetic with the notion that you can't expect a retool of an entire brand just because a couple of drum geeks are pissy about this and that. But Ludwig's current marketing undercuts their brand IMHO, and it's frustrating to watch at times. Remember how long it was before Pearl manufactured a tom holder cover for their bass drums? It had been a hot topic on PDF on and off for a year, but they did listen. Who knows what Ludwig will do later on?
    cogito ergo Bebop a Lula

  6. Drummist

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    Quote Originally Posted by 50thsession View Post
    There have been a lot of very relevant points presented here in this thread. There does appear to be a certain mystique created when it come to these BBs. There really isn't much more to be said regarding them. The drum, to some, is worth the money asked. Whether that amount is justified is open to continued discussion. Only Ludwig knows for sure why things are kept the way they are. One would think a 6.5" brass shell would only produce 1 distinctive sound. I agree I can't imagine that a seamless shell would produce that much of a quality sound. Sure, hoops, heads, will all contribute to sound, but with the points mentioned in this thread, it sure raises questions to me as to whether I am willing to shell out the 700 bucks for this drum. I admit that I have owned Ludwig snare drums with the P85 strainer and I just hated it. It just seemed so cheap and hard to keep adjusted. If I was to put the money out, it would be with the P86 strainer. Thanks to all for your input, it was definitely food for thought!
    Honestly, I can say if you are influenced by the Ludwig Black Beauty mystique, go for it. The quality and looks are there and it is a great sounding drum. Might well be shell thickness and composition are the deciding factors--which would make the thing worth the price, IMHO. I'd recommend die-cast rims and a P86 strainer, but other than that, you're good to go. I don't think anyone here would have a problem buying a BB.

    If you just want a nice brass drum, everyone makes them, and the WorldMax drums are great looking and economical.
    cogito ergo Bebop a Lula

  7. Registered User

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    Quote Originally Posted by chilledbongo View Post
    Why would you mess with that, if you were Ludwig? Consumers don't always know or demand what is best. Ludwig snares do not pile up on shelves or in factories. There is sometimes a waiting period, again, probably artificially manufactured to ramp up the allure of these highly profitable drums. No other snare drums have the same mystique, or history in recordings of pop and rock music, as Ludwig snares. So the company will never change a thing about any of these drums.

    I think the chronic complaints about the P85 are overdone. I have an older one. It's not great, but it works. Would you drop a new engine in an otherwise original Model T just because it might go faster? I doubt it.
    First of all, I don't have a BB, but I do have 2 Supraphonics, and BBs and SPs share the same hardware if I'm not mistaken. The problem with what you're saying is that they did change the hardware at a certain point. I'm not sure what the model # is, but the strainer on my '67 is a great, smooth, barebones strainer. The P85 on my 2004 broke in under half a year and never worked properly before that. The hoops are another issue. It's basically common knowledge that there is "lug splay" on all of the models after a certain point, making it harder to tune and stay in tune. This is because the hoops are simply too big for the drum. Fortunately the newer shells and lugs still seem to be of quality, so I've just outfitted the newer drum with an older model's hoops and strainer, and that has solved my problems.

    The point is you shouldn't have to outfit a brand new $400 drum with the same company's older hardware just to get it to play and sound proper. There is a reason Ludwig has fallen in the eyes of some. I heard that the change in quality came some time in the '80s when the company's ownership changed hands, but that's just what I heard.
    Last edited by Dave777; 03-13-2012 at 07:18 PM.
    2009 Pearl MCX Chestnut Fade 7-piece
    1979 Pearl Fiberglass Vanilla Marine Pearl 5-piece
    Snare: '67/'04 14x6.5 Ludwig Supra 402
    Sabian Cymbals

  8. Registered User

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    Im sure I'm in the minority in this, but I don't have any problem with the p-85. I have it on my acrolite, a vintage ludwig mahogany, and my black beauty, and it works great for me. Sure its not as smooth as a trick, but sometimes I just negative thoughts are contagious, and people pass that on whether they have experience using the gear or not, not implying theres people in this thread doing that, just saying...I really dig ludwig drum heads, and I like their actual snare wires, and the p-85 works great to me, so theres not much left for me to hate on really...

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  9. Registered User

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    I'm not saying all P85s are bad - matter of fact, my issue was one of the more extreme cases I've heard of. I'm also not a throwoff snob like some people, where they have to have a $200 strainer system on every drum they own. Simple, functional stuff is the name of the game for me; all I'm saying is that given my experience and all of the other bull**** I hear about them, I can't possibly recommend the P85. The one they used before the P85, the P83 (? see here), works great, and it's as simple as it gets, though that P86 does look nice .
    2009 Pearl MCX Chestnut Fade 7-piece
    1979 Pearl Fiberglass Vanilla Marine Pearl 5-piece
    Snare: '67/'04 14x6.5 Ludwig Supra 402
    Sabian Cymbals

  10. Registered User

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    The P86 is awesome. Simple, reliable and good looking.


    Handmade Cymbals from Turkey - cymbalvault.com.au

  11. I hit stuff!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave777 View Post
    I'm not saying all P85s are bad - matter of fact, my issue was one of the more extreme cases I've heard of. I'm also not a throwoff snob like some people, where they have to have a $200 strainer system on every drum they own. Simple, functional stuff is the name of the game for me; all I'm saying is that given my experience and all of the other bull**** I hear about them, I can't possibly recommend the P85. The one they used before the P85, the P83 (? see here), works great, and it's as simple as it gets, though that P86 does look nice .
    I have issues with mine too. They might not all be bad (I hope not), but they definitely have issues. Mine simply refuses to be operated smoothly; it catches about halfway through the motion, and needs to be jiggled and lifted to engage properly. Definitely not something I can do in the middle of a song.

  12. Registered User

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    That's what mine was doing. I think the problem lies here: Name:  p85.jpg
Views: 343
Size:  67.8 KB
    Eventually, it just broke in half.
    2009 Pearl MCX Chestnut Fade 7-piece
    1979 Pearl Fiberglass Vanilla Marine Pearl 5-piece
    Snare: '67/'04 14x6.5 Ludwig Supra 402
    Sabian Cymbals

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