Opinion can get heated when it comes to non-wood, synthetic shell drums - some drummers hate them with a vengeance, while others find that once they’ve tried one they are total converts.
The animosity is likely to be much less pronounced with snare drums, however. Snares are prized for their cutting-edge, rasping sound, sensitivity and dynamic range - all of which are qualities that synthetic (as well as metal) shell snares have in abundance.
A short history
The 1970s was the heyday of synthetic shell drums - watch those Top Of The Pops repeats and everyone seems to be playing an acrylic kit. But there is a resurgence just now, not just of acrylic shells but also of fibreglass or the slightly more expensive carbon fibre.
Synthetic materials are much more uniform than wood, and they are relatively unaffected by temperature and humidity. This gives them a consistency of performance and tone which some drummers like but others can find a bit sterile, dry or one-dimensional.
The manufacturers claim the earth for synthetics - volume, sensitivity, warmth, you name it. But you’ll have to be the judge. Just remember, the drum heads which make about three quarters of a drum’s sound are plastic - and this being the case, is there any reason why the drums themselves shouldn’t also be plastic?