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  • Mixed Cymbals

    Well, we've beaten the crap out of wich is the best cymbal for the right thing. But I've come to notice the varying brands and style cymbals thrown out.

    So how do you mix them? Do you use different brands and different series? Do you mix the same type of cymbal but different by size? Does it really matter? What do you do?
    The best damn kid in the record industry. Maybe.

  • #2
    I'm so glad you posted that question. I love talking about my cymbals.

    I generally use different brands for specific types of cymbals. My "Rhythm cymbals"(hats & rides) I generally stick with Zlidjians. I think that generally speaking, my rhythm cymbals should blend just a little more, and Zildjians do that very well. I also find that they are a little bit lower-pitched than most other cymbals brands I have tried. Within this spectrum, I tend to use the Zildjian A's. They are advertised as a sort of general-purpose sound type, and I like to stay versatile in my equipment.

    I generally like to use Sabians for my crashes. My primary is a 17" Virgil Donati signature crash. It has the AAX "Auto-focus" hammering which sort of gives it a natural equalization at differnt volumes. Nice crash. Doesn't ride too well, but the bell will do in a pinch. My secondary crash is a special-ordered HH Sound Control Crash. This is a special cymbal. It is the only product I ever took home without testing first. That's a lower pitch than my primary crash, but it's smaller and thinner. That comes from the HH hammering process. I find that crash rolls a little better. I like to use that for pit work and ballad-y songs. Their rides tend to cut right through a mix. Pitch wise, they tend to be widely-versed around the middle. Not as low as your typical Zildjian, but not as bright as the average Paiste.

    I have one Paiste splash. Alpha series. I find Paistes to be the brightest-sounding of the mainstream brands, and I like my splashes bright and punchy.

    If I had the choice, I might augment/replace that splash with a Sabian Mike Portnoy splash. I think it's a little "meatier" than the Paiste. But generally, I like that splash a great deal.

    When I need a lower volume set of hats for pit work or jazz, I find I can get a great tone out of the following:
    Top: 14" Zildjian A Mastersound hi-hat.
    Bottom: 14" CB Hi-hat(I can't quite recall whether it's the top or bottom)
    I also have a Zildjian Earth Plate. Even though I usually like Zildjians for the rhythm cymbals, they're the only company that makes the Earth Plate, so that makes sense, huh?

    Thanks for giving me the chance to dissertate. That felt good.

    -Jaay

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    • #3
      Personally, I like to keep everything the same, name wise. I like all my cymbals to have the same name, but I like different sizes and weights and grades. I have a "complete" setup with 14" hats, an all around good ride, a nice 16" crash, and then a 10" splash and 18" china. If I could though, I'd have a smaller, thinner china, maybe a 16". If I had more money, I'd try and get a couple more crashes, bright and dark, medium weight and thin, and varying splashes too. www.sabian.com talks about either keeping everything AA (brightest) or everything HH (darkest) or mixing it up. Basically, I like different textures and colors in my cymbal sound.
      td-6, pro-mark, remo, sabian, dw, tama rockstar.

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      • #4
        I wouldn't mind putting cymbals from other manufacterers in my setup, but right now I'm using Paiste's only and the next cymbals I'm gonna buy will be Paiste's too.

        I'd love to have a Sabian O-Zone crash, the Sabian Triple hihat, Meinl Generation-X cymbals and so on
        But first I need some good allround cymbals.

        ------------------
        My Personal homepage - MPCman's E-drum Picsite! currently with 14 profiles
        Music was my first love...

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        • #5
          I love sabian cymbals!!
          I will buy all my crashs, ride, hats... all sabians~~
          except the chinas
          and I will go with WUHAN chinas!!

          (finally I got the HH leopard ride!! the sound is good but not loud enough)

          Next I will get some AAX crash, trust me AAXplosion 16" sound very very good!!~~~~


          Originally posted by MPCman:
          I wouldn't mind putting cymbals from other manufacterers in my setup, but right now I'm using Paiste's only and the next cymbals I'm gonna buy will be Paiste's too.

          I'd love to have a Sabian O-Zone crash, the Sabian Triple hihat, Meinl Generation-X cymbals and so on
          But first I need some good allround cymbals.

          [This message has been edited by drummercat (edited June 24, 2002).]

          [This message has been edited by drummercat (edited June 24, 2002).]

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          • #6
            Yeah I'm kinda building a new set, mostly based on what I was given. Soon, in exchange for some PA equipment, I'm going to take in my church's Yamaha Stage Custom. And it is slightly custom, thanks to the previous drummer. But from what I've read and done myself, these drums are great. They seem to fill any style well, and have the sound of your standard drums. Not overellaborate, but not a quite a beginner set, either. And as far as studio work is concerned. As long as they are mic'ed well and are tuned properly, you can get some sweet sounding beats out of these babies.

            But back to cymbals. I have a B8 Pro 21" ride, which is really working out for all my sounds. A Zildjian 17" medium crash. Thats it. You'd be amazed that you really don't need a lot of cymbals. Many drummers only use one! I guess its only because they're too busy to worry about what cymbal to hit when. I just wish I could get my old set back...I do miss it so.

            Keep this topic going, I think a lot of us here need to know some opinions!
            The best damn kid in the record industry. Maybe.

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            • #7
              Mixing cymbal brands is nothing new. I've almost always used Zildjian rhythm cymbals (Hats & ride), but also have a set of Sabian hats and a Sabian ride.

              When I bought my Sabian ride, I played about 20 different ride cymbals, and let my ears pick out which one I liked, irrespective of brand or price. I was looking for something bright, pingy, and shimmery - mostly for recording. I ended up with a Sabian Pro 20" ride, which is far from either my favorite brand or the most expensive Sabian. To be honest, I was expecting to choose a Paiste Signature.

              This little $140 ride had the most beautiful sound for what I needed. The bell is quite small, and it doesn't have the most cutting bell sound, but for nice "pinging" I like it alot.

              My other ride cymbal I currently have in the bag is a Zildjian Earth ride, which I've described before as the proverbial bronze sledge hammer. Nothing but F'ing loud, man.

              On my acoustic kit, I'm using a set of Zildjian 14" A Rock hats. Bright, cutting, thick, and they do everything pretty well. Sabian Pro ride I described above. For crashes, I'm using the Zildjian Z Custom 17" and 19" Rock crashes. I also have the matching 16" and 18" models, but the odd-sizes seem to sound especially nice. The 19" would probably function quite well as a ride cymbal, but it has a great crash tone as well. Since I'm currently lacking any other crash cymbals (except many old cracked ones and a Sabian AA 16"), I'm kinda stuck using the loud Z Customs for now. My trusty 18" Wuhan china and 12" Paiste splash remain in the bag for now, awaiting the call.

              A pair of A Customs, maybe 16" and 18", would probably be primo for this kit, but I've got other stuff to spend money on at the moment. A pair of Paiste Signatures would do (at least) equally as well.

              As for me, I like my crashes to blend well, with similar tonal characteristics but varying in pitch. I like to use the different pitches at different times to work within and emphasize the phrasing that I'm trying to achieve. In this, I generally stick to matched sets of crash cymbals.

              Other people prefer a broader pallette of colors to choose from, ranging from bright to dark to atonal. I'm more of a bright, high-pitched crash kinda guy; I like them to sit (frequency-wise) a bit over the rest of the music.

              In my distant past, I've had setups that included an 18" Paiste Rude crash/ride, 18 Sabian Rocktagon, Meinl 16" crash, and Paiste 2000 Reflector 16" crash, with a Sabian 10" China Splash, 18" Wuhan China, 1 pair of Sabian hats, 1 pair of Zildjian hats, and a Zildjian ride - all mounted at the same time!!!! Talk about a strange mix! That was when I was playing a large kit doing loud rock on a tight budget, and got what was on sale at the time I needed it.

              I'm not sure how "musical" I'd consider that combination these days, but a dozen years ago, I was digging it alot. Guess my point is: There are no rules. Whatever works for your ears. I've found that most non-drummer listeners will never know the differences between cymbals. You can mount the cheapest hats, ride, and 1 crash cymbal, and almost nobody will know the difference from a nice, big, cymbal setup - at least, not by listening.

              -Danny
              -Danny

              Build a man a fire, and he'll be warm for a day. Set a man on fire, and he'll be warm for the rest of his life.

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              • #8
                Re: Mixed Cymbals

                Originally posted by Algee
                Do you mix the same type of cymbal but different by size?
                That seems to be what most of the pros do, but I actually take the opposite approach. All my crashes are the exact same size, but vary by brand.
                • 17" Zildjian Z Custom Medium
                • 17" Sabian AA Fast Crash
                • 17" Zlidjian A Custom
                • 17" Sabian HHXtreme Crash
                - Scott

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                • #9
                  Funny how years ago, you almost never used to see "odd"-size cymbals, with the exception of 13- and 15-inch hi-hats. Nowadays, odd-size crash cymbals & 21-inch rides are commonplace. As I mentioned earlier, I like my 17 & 19-inch Z Custom crashes the best, and after some testing, it looks like I'll be getting 15 and 17-inch A Custom crashes for the lighter stuff on my acoustic kit.

                  For some reason, the odd sizes just seem to sound "right," more often than not. I'm sure that it is totally subjective, and if it isn't, then there is probably some deep mathematical explaination that only Stephen Hawking or John Nash would understand.

                  Just a thought,
                  -Danny

                  Build a man a fire, and he'll be warm for a day. Set a man on fire, and he'll be warm for the rest of his life.

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                  • #10
                    I mix a K Zildjian dark crash with Paiste 3000 and Line cymbals. It was more a lucky mixture than a policy to buy different brands, but since I have them (and like them) I will leave it this way.
                    Robert

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by fartnokker

                      For some reason, the odd sizes just seem to sound "right," more often than not. I'm sure that it is totally subjective, and if it isn't, then there is probably some deep mathematical explaination that only Stephen Hawking or John Nash would understand.

                      Just a thought,
                      I remember reading that you can get the power of the 1" size larger with the control of the 1" size smaller cymbal. Sounds right to me, but then i'm no Stephen Hawking.
                      td-6, pro-mark, remo, sabian, dw, tama rockstar.

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                      • #12
                        Wiley Coyote - Supra-Genius!

                        Yeah, I'm no Stephen Hawking, either... Well, maybe I drool on myself from time to time...

                        -Danny

                        Build a man a fire, and he'll be warm for a day. Set a man on fire, and he'll be warm for the rest of his life.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          LOL! On second thought, that's not funny!
                          Roland TD-20 v1.08, various v-drums and v-cymbals, Yamaha KP65's, Axis pedals, Gibraltar hardware, Mackie 1202/SRM450 (pre-china)

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