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Product Focus - Our top 5 Gretsch Snare Drums

Product Focus - Our top 5 Gretsch Snare Drums

Martin Holland-Lloyd |

With so many great snares to choose from, finding your perfect snare can be a bit of a minefield. To offer you some inspiration we've put together this blog of our top 5 Gretsch snares. From just below £200 all the way up to over £1300 for a Bell Brass monster of a snare, there should be something for everyone. Read on to find out which out of the multitude of brilliant snares caught our attention.

Please note that prices are quoted as a rough guide but are subject to changes due to our price matching software.


Gretsch Model: S1-6514-ASHSN

Gretsch "Full Range" 14"x6.5" Ash Snare Drum in Natural

Guide Price: £189.00

This snare was a must for us on the list, a fantastically sharp and punchy snare for the money! Sure it's not going to keep up with the likes of some of the snares on the list that are 4 times the price, but it outshines it's contemporaries at a similar price point, it tunes well and a crisp note with a medium sustain can easily be achieved. Visually the matt finish shell is really attractive and no two shells are the same. The natural finish will go well with most sets. For those wishing to upgrade from the snare that came with their £600 kit, this is an excellent choice. 


Gretsch Model: G4160CBP

Gretsch USA Black Copper 14"x5" Snare Drum

Guide Price: £829

Power, versatility, definition, sensitivity... It’s all here. This snare has a wonderful balance of resonance and tone due to the 3mm reinforced solid Copper shells and 45-degree bearing edges. More controlled than Bell brass and a warmth more akin to the Bronze shells, this snare has versatility but with it's own character and tone. Finished in a deep Black Powder Coating and with 10 classic lugs, additional features include a Lightning throw-off, die-cast hoops, 'Snap-In' key holder, center shell Gretsch knurled pattern Badge and 42-Strand snare wire.


Gretsch Model: G4164

Gretsch USA Chrome Over Brass 14" x 6.5" Snare Drum

Guide Price: £639

Much like Ludwig have the 402 to define their sound, this Gretsch chrome over brass snare fits the Gretsch profile like a glove. Super expressive and versatile but easy to tune, the Gretsch classic- Crisp, powerful attack always manages to find its own space in the overall mix. By chrome plating the brass shell, the high end of the drum is accentuated, making for a very controlled snap. Additional features include Lightning throw-off, die-cast hoops, 'Snap-In' key holder and 42-Strand snare wire.


Gretsch Model: GAS5514-KC

Gretsch USA Keith Carlock Signature 14"x5.5" Snare Drum

Guide Price: £849

When you are fortunate enough to work with the drummer who has performed with such a wide range of artists such as Steely Dan, Toto, Wayne Krantz, James Taylor, Tal Wilkenfeld, John Mayer, Sting, Chris Botti, and many more…why wouldn’t you want to develop a snare drum with him? His rhythmic expression behind the drum set is so musical and so inspiring to many musicians across the globe.

The aged patina of this Brass shell does more than give an amazing aged look, it colours the brass sound of the shell and gives it more control, almost an edge of dampening, it's such an expressive drum and always seems to give you something new to listen to each time you sit and play it. (this is my favourite out of them all :)

Additional features include 45 degree bearing edges, 4mm Die Cast hoops and our classic Lightning throw off. Each snare has an inside identification label specifying the year of production and each is signed by Keith himself.


Gretsch Model: G4169BBR

Gretsch USA Bell Brass 14"x6.5" Snare Drum

Guide Price: £1339


Many of you are probably thinking that only a lottery win or a high flying executive job could excuse spending so much money on a snare drum, and there's no denying that it is a lot of money but hear me out. The sound a cast brass shell gives to a snare is unique. It oozes character, there are tones and harmonics everywhere. They may not be to everyone's taste and there is some degree of skill required to tame and tune one of these, with practise however you really can get what you want and leave out what you don't with a bell brass shell. The other aspect is raw power. It's no accident that you'll often find these drums sitting behind a loud band. It really will just keep on delivering volume the more you ask of it. There is a trade off, price being one and weight being another, if you have to carry your gear often and on your own you may start to resent this drum, but as a musical instrument it really is formidable! 

Do Hardcase to a snare case with wheels?.............