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14 vs 15 hi hats

AtlantaDrumGuy

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What do you guys prefer? I’ve generally moved towards 15 hats and even larger. Still have some 14 pairs that I just can’t see selling.
 

jptrickster

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I like both but lean towards 14’s for overall use, the feel is a tad bit quicker than the 15 and maybe a touch more precise. 15’s are downright sexy though!
 

Redbeard77

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I've been playing 15s for years, but when I do play 14s it's not a big difference in feel. The 14s may be slightly more articulate, but I think the lower pitch of the 15s blends in the mix better.
 

dtk

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when I started coming to this forum I thought...why on earth would anyone need 15" hats. No I own a few and a set of 16s.

I play a lot of closed hat and like when doing two handed stuff on the hats for them to be in two different areas for different tones...15s are great for that. 14s are like a great commuter vehicle...15s are a little more luxurious...13s more like sports cars. I'm having trouble finding a reason to keep my 13s
 

the_dude

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For main hats 13,14,15 whatever.
I'm easy.
It's all about the sound for me.
 

bongomania

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I love both. Maybe it’s just the specific ones I have, but I do feel like the 14s are quicker. I am into low pitched hats though, so obviously increasing diameter can do that. So my bag right now, for the one band I’m in, is lower pitched 14s. But at home I prefer paper thin 15s.
 

fun2drum

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I like 14's best for everything I care to play. I sold the 15's I had for a couple of years. They weren't horrible at all, but actually sounded good - they didn't feel as good to me as my 14's though. Maybe it's in my mind. I don't care for 13's at all.
 

Mongrel

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My first hats were 15" New Beats. Played them from 1977 to 1999 (not continuosly but...).

1999 I bought a set of Quick Beats because...welll....
*everybody* plays 14" right?

First thing I noticed was I had to keep my eyes on the 14s because from so many years playing 15s I was missing the edge at times. Sometimes even dropping the stick because of the miss. But they were quicker and crispier. Tried and still have 13" K\Zs, plus 14" new New Beats.

Latest experiment has been using 16" IAK dark crash over a very old 16" A. Almost perfect size and profile match and a very cool sound.

Put me in the camp of using whatever works!

Sometimes it is plain old boredom that necessitates change. If so-I'm covered!
 

Burps

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I have never put a stick on a 15” pair in my life. I have always preferred brighter and quicker hats. I subscribed to the idea to use smaller and thinner hats (13 and 14s) since I play mostly on the light side and lower volume side. I always equated bigger with louder and just kept away from 15s for that reason, though that isn’t always necessarily true.
 

James Walker

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14 most of the time, occasionally 13" for steel band gigs (soca and calypso grooves), or 15" for acoustic jazz (pre-serial 602).

I've never gotten the appeal of playing 16" hi-hats myself, although I've heard other drummers use them to good effect.
 

gbow

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I have an use all of them. Two pairs of 14's that are good, one pair of 15 zildjians from the 70s that are my go to, and a pair of heavy K 13s that have the best "chic" sound of any hihat I own.

As someone else said, it's all about the sound for me. I've seen a set of 15 k custom special dry on here for sale that I try to ignore :) But maybe I need to send the guy a note..

gabo
 

foxy_shazamtastic

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One problem I have with 15s, depending on the pair/situation, is the foot chick can be too low pitched to cut through. But when using the hi-hats as an alternate ride surface I prefer the pitch and spread of 15s.
 

jtpaistegeist

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It took me several pairs of 15's before I found ones that were responsive enough, and with a solid foot chick, all the while not being overly heavy. Went through K's, Bos Turks, New Beats, and finally got the Paiste ME's and they are the sound/feel I was after. IMO they have a great balance overall, and sound amazing recorded.
 
Z

zenstat

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A quick overview based on pairs recorded in my database.

Based on 455 hat pairs (A Zildjians) the shares of diameter go

11 0.4% (n=2)
12 3.5% (n=16)
13 7% (n=32)
14 55.2% (n=251)
15 31% (n=141)
16 2.9% (n=13)

so over half are 14", one third 15", and 7% 13" with smaller numbers of larger and smaller sizes. A majority of the 11" and 12" diameter hats are from the old days (1930s and early 1940s).

Based on 692 hat pairs (Paiste 602 and Sound Creation) the shares of diameter go

11 0.7% (n=5)
12 0.9% (n=6)
13 5.6% (n=39)
14 70.5% (n=488 )
15 21.2% (n=147)
16 1% (n=7)

so the pattern is similar with 14" even more dominant.
 

AtlantaDrumGuy

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I have sizes from 14 thru 17. I’ve used them all. 14s aren’t bad. I guess they all have their place. If I’m doing a bunch of funky barks, then 14s are usually in store. Otherwise, I tend to go larger.
 


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