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7 Best Snare Drum Heads 2020

Finding the perfect snare drum head can be a hassle. You want something that will not only fit your set but give you the best possible sound. On top of all that, you need something that won't break the bank. Do not let an unsatisfactory purchase ruin your session. 

With so many options on the market, and salespeople attempting to upsell you on poor quality equipment, it is hard to know what is the best deal. Luckily enough, we have compiled a list of the best seven snare drum heads available today. Through research and testing, looking at variable weights and different coatings, you can trust that these are the absolute best in a mixture of quality and affordability. 

The Best Snare Drum Heads 

https://www.drumcenternh.com/aquarian-snare-tom-heads-texture-coated-drumhead-14

https://www.drumcenternh.com/aquarian-snare-tom-heads-texture-coated-power-dot-drumhead-14

https://www.drumcenternh.com/evans-g1-coated-drum-head-14-inch

https://www.drumcenternh.com/evans-14-heavyweight-coated

https://www.drumcenternh.com/evans-ec1-reverse-dot-snare-batter-drum-head-14-inch

https://www.drumcenternh.com/ludwig-silver-dot-by-remo-14-clear

https://www.drumcenternh.com/remo-snare-drum-tom-heads-ambassador-coated-14-diameter 

Reviews 

1. Aquarian Snare/Tom Heads: Texture Coated Drumhead 14 

This snare drum head has set itself apart from the pack by using only quality materials. From the texture coat to the 10 mil single ply that covers it, quality is a staple in Aquarian snare drum heads. With a sensitive response to sticks or brushes, you will find that this product will enhance your set while still being an affordable deal. 

Specifications:

  • Single-ply
  • Satin finish 

Pros:

  • Chipping resistant
  • Medium-weight
  • Very responsive

Cons:

  • Unconventional coating

Verdict: 

The bottom line with the Aquarian snare head is that they are built to last. These drum heads can take a beating over and over again through regular use but still hold their coating with no chips. That level of quality offered at such an affordable price is one of the reasons this product is the top of our list. If you are looking for something that can take consistent use and still last the test of time, this is the product for you. 

Click here to purchase yours today! 

2. Aquarian Snare/Tom Heads : Texture Coated Power Dot Drumhead 14 

Although at first glance it may appear to be similar to the first Aquarian snare drum head we reviewed, this product uses a power dot to enhance performance. Tried and tested, the addition of this feature leads to amazing audio when contacted. Although you have to pay for the addition, the power dot leads to crisper, tighter sound. The small increase in price is a small barrier to unlock new potential in music. 

Specifications:

  • Single-ply
  • Satin finish
  • Power dot 

Pros:

  • Chipping resistant
  • Medium-weight
  • Very responsive
  • Crisp improved sound 

Cons:

  • Unconventional coating

Verdict: 

Similar to the previous item on our list, this drum head is made to last. The durability is unmatched. By keeping its integrity through use, it holds some of the best sounds for any users. Unlike the other products, the addition of the power dot makes this item a completely different product. 

If you are in a position where you will spend what you need for the highest quality sound, this is the purchase for you. However, for people looking to spend on a budget, we suggest skipping the upgrade and purchasing the first Aquarian drum head. 

Click here to purchase yours today! 

3. Evans G1 Coated Drum Head, 14 Inch 

The Evans G1 drum head may be one of the more unique versions of drum heads we have on our list. The design used allows for great versatility in how you choose to drum. Whether you want a deep low rumble or a heavy thud, this drum head can be tuned to give you the perfect desired sound. This USA made product will deliver a wide range of deep and full tones every session you use it. 

Specifications:

  • Single-ply
  • Level 360 Technology collar
  • 10 mil film

 Pros:

  • Great tuning
  • Open sound
  • Versatile uses 

Cons:

  • Low durability 

Verdict: 

There are a few features that make this drum head worth the purchase. The first being the 360 technology collar design. This additional feature gives the drum head the best possible contact between the drum shell and itself. It keeps the sound consistent and correct to the hit of the drum. It's sold at a very reasonable price, and the product stands proud as one of the most versatile and powerful options available. 

Click here to purchase yours today! 

4. Evans 14 Heavyweight Coated Drum Head 

This product is made with one thing in mind. It's meant to be struck and make big sounds. The thick snare drum head is made from two separate 10 mil films with an additional control dot on the underside. This leads to an incredibly thick drum head that can take a beating and dish out some serious sound. One of the reasons we love this product so much is its implementation of the 360 technology collar and how that impacts the sound. 

Specifications:

  • Double-ply
  • Level 360 Technology collar
  • 10 mil film
  • 23 mil total thickness
  • Reverse dot 

Pros:

  • Great tuning
  • Big sound
  • Versatile uses
  • High volume 

Cons:

  • Thick in size
  • Heavier than others 

Verdict: 

There is no doubt that this product set out to be a thick and heavy drum head with excellent sound, and it achieved that goal. With a satisfying sound on every hit, the Evans design will take a beating over and over again and continue to provide you with amazing results. Similar to the other Evans drum heads in this list, it utilizes the 360 technology for the best possible contacts. This is even more evident using the heavyweight design. This product is for anyone who wants deep low sounds while they wail on their set relentlessly. 

Click here to purchase yours today! 

5. Evans EC1 Reverse Dot Snare Batter Drum Head, 14 Inch 

The Evans EC1 Reverse Dot Snare Batter Drum Head is different than any other on this list. Still made with the traditional single ply, it can achieve double-ply durability through its 14 mil film and reverse dot. In addition to these features, its edge control technology and level 360 technology makes it an advanced option, keeping the sound clear while contacting the full drum shell. Similar to other Evans products, the use of the 360 technology collar makes a striking difference in sound quality. 

Specifications:

  • Single-ply
  • Level 360 Technology collar
  • 14 mil film
  • Edge control technology
  • Reversed dot 

Pros:

  • Great tuning
  • Sensitive response
  • Versatile uses
  • High durability 

Cons:

  • More expensive 

Verdict: 

There is little this drum head can not do. By having such a durable build, once purchased, you will be able to use the product without worrying about wear and tear continually. The addition of the edge control technology leads to a clear sound on every hit. The reverse dot allows you to focus and attack the center of the drum, which, when combined with the 360 technology, gives perfect contact to ensure the highest quality of sound. With all that in mind, this drum head does cost more than the competition, but it is worth it for the upgrades you receive. 

Click here to purchase yours today! 

6. Ludwig Silver Dot by Remo 14 Clear 

The Ludwig snare drum head prides itself on bringing back the classic '70s series. With the addition of the silver dot, this drum head focuses on delivering brilliant sonics and visuals. The silver dot also leads to an increase in durability and allows this product to take a beating while still delivering balanced sound through its 10 mil transparent film. 

Specifications:

  • Single-ply
  • 10 mil film
  • Silver dot
  • High-tension Remo Crimplock hoop
  • Clearcoat 

Pros:

  • Balanced construction
  • Durable
  • Fits with Ludwig kit
  • Focused tone 

Cons:

  • Only comes in silver
  • Prioritizes classic sounds 

Verdict: 

The most significant part of the Ludwig silver dot series may be the high-tension Remo Crimplock hoop. By teaming with Remo, this snare drum head reduces overtones and enhances head seating, making it one of the highest quality classic products on this list. This product is perfect for old drummers looking to get back into their classic style, or new musicians who may want to find fresh sounds in their drum kit. Either way, this product fits everyone. 

Click here to purchase yours today! 

7. Remo Coated Ambassador 14 Inch Drum Head 

This product is known worldwide and has a tremendous reputation to live up to. Its design and variable sizes from 6" - 40" make it one of the most popular snare drum heads as well as one of the most useful for drummers. The single-ply leads to warm tones and a bright sound in every hit. Additionally, the Ambassador brand is known for its quality and holds itself to a high standard when creating drum heads for any type of musician. 

Specifications:

  • Single-ply
  • 10 mil coated film
  • Medium-weight
  • Snare/tom batter and resonant 

Pros:

  • Available in multiple sizes
  • Bright attack and controlled sustain
  • Ideal for Tom, Bass, and Snare
  • Open sound 

Cons:

  • Less durable
  • Not suitable for resonant side 

Verdict: 

With a lot of hype behind it, this product lives up to all the good you may hear about it. Clear sounds, sustainable for strong attacks, and a thin coated film to help with the contact, there is little wrong with this product. When you consider the affordable price and that you can order them in different sizes depending on what a user may need, this snare drum head is a fantastic purchase for beginners and veterans alike. 

Click here to purchase yours today!

What to Consider When Buying Snare Drum Heads 

Snare drum heads have a few things that they share across different brands. The majority of finishes are the same, and many of them are similar thicknesses. However, that does not mean that there is no variation between each product. Each has a unique build and thus will produce a unique sound. We've outlined the four major things to consider when buying a snare drum head and how they affect your overall result when playing. 

Single or Double-ply 

When looking at all the possible snare drum heads available, the first thing you should consider is how many layers are used in the film. With a single-ply film, you are more likely to get a satisfying contact when you strike the drum head. It has physically fewer things between you and the drum to make the sound. Often these single-ply will be 10 mil film as a standard. In contrast, drum heads that use double-ply tend to be more durable. Their ability to take a beating increases as they double down on the protection of the product. Although one may not be better than the other, it is worth considering how you want to feel when contacting the drum head and which will fit best for you. 

Durability 

Almost tied into the amount of ply used in the drum head, the durability of the complete product is a serious factor to consider before making any purchase. If you continuously use your drum kit and tend to wear through other drum heads, you need to consider getting one built for abuse. Either thicker ply or a more durable build, in general, will keep you from having to buy a completely new head every time you decide to have an intense session. 

Additionally, some products use chip-resistant film or other measures to ensure durability over long term use. Often this information is available on the product page and advertised as a feature. Whether you are specifically looking for a durable option, or just comparing all possible products, durability is a high priority factor. 

Additional Dots 

One of the more exciting parts of picking a snare drum head is if you want to look to include a reverse or power dot. These features are dots in the center of a drum head to provide support to the entire head without changing the tone or sound. Often these additions to drum heads not only improve durability, but they also help improve the quality of the music. By giving you a precise location to strike and distributing the sound more evenly, you will get a bright and striking sound from this upgrade. 

Weight 

Although this may be a more prominent feature to consider when buying, it is still relevant and worth mentioning. The overall weight of a snare drum head can be a deal-breaker depending on the kit you currently have. If it is too large and heavy, you may find it hard to attach and use. Similarly, if you play in multiple locations, you should always consider how adding weight to your set might make it more challenging to bring with you wherever you might play. Finally, the last reason weight is so important, is the simple fact that a heavier drum head will produce a different sound than one that is light and easily moved. 

Other Technology 

The final thing to consider when looking to by a snare drum head is if there are any additional design features or technologies added. Some people want classic drum heads that do not give assistance or help to their sound, while others appreciate the inclusion of 360 technology. This can come in many forms, whether it is extra layers for durability or the high tension Remo Crimplock hoop. Whatever you are looking for, just be sure to check all additional features before purchasing. 

FAQ Section 

Are there sizes other than 14" snare drum heads? 

Yes! Many of the different products have variable sizes and can be ordered with a smaller or broader size. 

Does the material of the film affect the sound? 

Although most of the snare drum heads are only offered with one kind of material, there is some variation in sound. Consider looking at different brands of drum heads and how their sound might complement yours.

Do I need a power dot? 

Praised for how they can help bring your sound to the next level, power dots on snare drum heads are not a necessity for quality sound. They often help durability and produce a cleaner, more precise sound, but they in no way are required for beginners. 

Bottom Line

So what is the best snare drum head for you? Although there is a lot of things to consider when buying a snare drum head for your kit, the most important thing to remember is the sound you want to achieve and work from there. Once you know what music you want from your drum head, you can start to look at all the possible additional features.

Thickness, style, power dots, and size will all affect the sound and how you play on it. By reviewing and ranking these products, we give you all the information and tools to make the most informed decision. No matter if you are just starting with a new set, or if you are a drumming veteran, this list has something to improve your kit and sound.