How Much Does a Snare Drum Cost

How Much Does A Snare Drum Cost?

The snare drum is a vital piece in any drum kit. There are almost no other drums that are as important as the snare, and it is one of the most versatile and useful peices in a kit. However, drums do not last forever, and every drummer will have to upgrade as they improve, which leads many drummers to wonder how much snare drums cost?

Snare drums cost between $40 and $1900, depending on several factors. Beginner snares are the least expensive. Intermediate snares are the best value for money, costing between $150 and $900. Professional snares sound the best and are the most expensive. High-quality snares are usually expensive.

The price of a snare drum is dependent on several factors, and some are more expensive than others. The snare is a critical drum, and it is one of the only drums worth spending real money on, but how much do they cost? Let’s explore the price range of modern snare drums to help you determine which snare is best for you.

How Much Do Snare Drums Cost?

The snare is arguably the most vital drum in any kit. This drum provides the backbeat and is one of the most versatile drum types for all genres of music and all styles of playing. This piece is so important, but it is often overlooked or undervalued. However, every drummer needs a snare, so how much do they cost?

Snare drums cost anywhere between $40 and $1900. There are many varieties, brands, styles, types, and tones available for every price range. Beginner snares can cost as little as $40, but professional snares are much more expensive. A good affordable snare expensive will cost between $250 and $600.

Snare drums are produced all over the world by hundreds of various manufacturers, and each of them has its own manufacturing processes, uses various materials, and has a different cost of operations. This means that the price of snare drums varies wildly.

The materials used in the drum, how well the drum is made, what manufacturing processes are used to make the drum, the drum brand, the drum heads, and the overall quality, durability, and tone of the drum are all major factors in how much snare costs to buy.

Some snare drums cost more not because they are better made than others in the same category, but rather because they have the name of a famous drummer attached to them, which raises the price further still.

All of this variation can make it challenging to determine which snare is best for you, which snare drums are actually worth the cost, and it can lead to confusion regarding price and quality.

An expensive snare drum is not always a good snare drum, and a cheap snare may not sound as poor as you might imagine. The price of a drum is not always an indication of quality and tone, but the truth is, as with all instruments, the more you spend, the more you get.

More expensive snare drums are almost always better to play than less expensive versions, and where and how the drum is made makes a big impact on price and tone as well. Let’s take a closer look at snare drum prices in various ranges.

How Much Does a Beginner Snare Drum Cost?

Beginner snare drums are typically made with very basic materials and are not produced to high-quality standards. Nevertheless, many drummers start out on these drums, and they provide a good learning platform.

These drums are worthwhile for beginners as breaking the snare or snare head does not equate to a large loss of money, and if the beginner drummer loses interest, there has not been a large initial financial outlay.

Beginner snare drums begin at around $40 per snare, but the better-quality versions of beginner snares typically cost around $150.

A snare that costs $150 is likely to last the beginner drummer a long time and provide a lot of good practicing hours before they need to move on to something with better quality and more versatility. 

Beginner snares are basic, but there are some beginner snares that still sound very good for what they are.

How Much Does an Intermediate Snare Drum Cost?

Intermediate snare drums are the next step up in quality from beginner snares, but they are the next step up in price as well. These drums have the widest price range of any snare drums, as the market is saturated at this level, and there are so many brands competing with one another.

The good news, however, is that all of this competition in this price bracket means that most intermediate snare drums are incredible value for money and tend to sound very good as well if you buy a snare from a reputable brand.

Intermediate snare drums cost anywhere from $150 to around $900, sometimes more. Any intermediate snares are significantly more expensive than beginner models, but the price is well worth it for these drums. 

These drums are usually well made and typically sound very good. They are made with a wide range of materials and are produced by the best names in the drum business. 

How Much Does a Professional Snare Drum Cost?

Professional snare drums are where things become serious. These are the best sounding, most well-made snare drums possible, and they are produced with some very exotic materials for the sake of the best possible tone. 

This range of snare drums can cost anywhere from around $600 to $1900, or in some instances even many thousands of dollars. These snares are not meant for the average drummer, nor for the weekend bashers who play on the local stage on a Friday night.

These snare drums are designed for high-level studio drummers, professional touring drummers who play for the biggest artists, and for drummers playing in the best bands in the industry. 

These musicians demand only the best quality from their instruments and are willing to pay whatever the rice for the best tone, reliability, and quality possible.

If you have the money to buy a professional snare, you will not find anything better than the other snare drum ranges.

The Best And Most Popular Snare Drum Prices

There are so many snare drums available right now, but fortunately, the drumming community is vast, and there is at least one drummer that has tried every type of snare drum out there.

This means that there is a user review of every type of snare drum available right now and that there is a good pool of information to draw from to compile a list of the most popular snare drums and the best snare drums overall.

The list of the most popular and best overall snare drums include:

  • The Pearl Masterworks Snare – $1500+
  • The Ludwig Black Beauty Snare – $1400+
  • The Sonor Vintage Series Snare – $900+
  • The Yamaha Recording Custom Snare – $570+
  • The Mapex Black Panther Snare – $530+
  • The Tama Sound Lad Project Snare – $500+
  • The Pearl Sensitone Snare – $420+
  • The DW Design Series Snare – $400+
  • The Gretsch Full Range Hammerhead Snare – $360+
  • The SCJ Custom Pathfinder Snare – $280+
  • The Tama Metalworks Snare – $140+
  • The Pearl Short Fuse Snare – $100+
  • The Gretsch Blackhawk Snare – $90

This list of snare drums includes the most widely used and the best snare drums on the market today, as well as the typical price that these drums sell for. 

The price of each snare drum on the list is an estimate, as the price of snare drums varies slightly depending on where you are in the world, the availability of the drums, import taxes, shipping fees, and which retailer you buy the drum from.

All of the snare drums on this list are proven by drummers to be some of the best snare drums out there, but some are better than others.

For example, the Ludwig Black Beauty is known to be one of the best sounding snare drums ever made and is widely regarded to be the best snare drum in the world right now. This snare is very expensive, but it is not the most expensive snare on the list, nor is it close to the all-time most expensive snare. 

Another good example of a great snare is the DW Design Series snare drum. This drum is said to have a similar tone to the Black Beauty and is loved by every drummer who uses it, but it only costs around $400. This snare proves that ultimate tone does not always mean an ultimate price tag.

The less expensive drums on this list sell for around $100, but they are still great-sounding snares. These are more well suited for beginner drummers, but they are not a compromise on tone. 

Why Are Snare Drums Expensive?

The fact that some snare drums can be sold at low prices and still have a great tone raises the question of why are some snare drums so expensive?

The price of a snare drum is dependent on several factors. The largest factors in the price, however, are the build materials and the manufacturing process, and proficiency.

The most expensive snare drums in the world are made from very expensive materials, as these materials tend to sound better than others. For example, some woods sound better for drums because they resonate better or in a more controlled way than other woods, which makes them more desirable, which, in turn, increases the price of the drum.

The same is true for drums made from metals, as well as the hardware that a drum is assembled with. The drum dead that a snare is assembled with also raises or decreases the price of the overall sale price of the drum. Snares with better heads sell for more than snares with lesser quality heads.

Another large factor in the price of a snare is how the drum is made and how well the drum is made. If a snare drum must be hand-made by a skilled craftsman, the craftsman can only make a limited number of drums at a time. This makes the drums more expensive, but every drum is sure to be well made and unique.

Other processes such as rolled metalworking are also very difficult to do, but they produce excellent drums such as the Black Beauty by Ludwig. These drums sound so good because they are one solid piece of resonating material, but they are very difficult to make.

This means that the manufacturer only produces a limited number of these snares per year, which drives the price up and makes the drum more exclusive, which also adds to the overall value of the drum.

If a professional-grade snare is associated with a well-known drummer, or if a renowned drummer works with a drum manufacturer to produce a signature snare, this also makes the drum more expensive due to the work that goes into designing the drum, the limited number of snares available, and the name of the artist associated with the drum.

Snare drums that are produced using more simple or more automated manufacturing processes are less expensive, and snares that are made from less expensive materials are less expensive to buy as well.

High-quality snare drums are usually worth the money that they cost because they typically sound far better than other snare drum types. However, there are several more intermediate snare drums that sound as good as many expensive snares, so take the time to find the best snare for you, regardless of price.


The price of snare drums varies widely. These versatile drums form an integral part of any drum set, and music would not be the same without them. The amount that you spend on a snare is directly proportionate to the quality of the snare, but it is not always an indication of a good tone.

Great sounding snares are usually very expensive, but there are more affordable models that sound very good as well. Take the time to find the right snare for you regardless of price. Base the drum that you buy on the way it sounds rather than how much it costs.

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