Dark Paiste vs. Dark Zildjian vs. Istanbul Agop

Topsy Turvy

Very well Known Member
Joined
Feb 27, 2017
Messages
1,000
Reaction score
429
Location
United States
I have been playing Istanbul Agop for a bit and have been frustrated in my search for all-around rides/crashes. I love the dark, complex sounds that I get from most of the Istanbul Agop lines, but it is nearly impossible to find a ride from them, for example, that has enough stick clarity to drive a band. What I mostly get is a stick sound that is buried under wash, regardless of weight. The crashes are a little better - especially the Traditional line- but not much.

This led me to start looking at sort of equivalent cymbals from Paiste (Masters) and Zildjian (Constantinoples). I'm just wondering, what are people's thoughts on these cymbals as compared to Istanbul Agops?
 

Rick

Very well Known Member
Joined
Nov 29, 2018
Messages
645
Reaction score
561
Location
Atlanta
I have been playing Istanbul Agop for a bit and have been frustrated in my search for all-around rides/crashes. I love the dark, complex sounds that I get from most of the Istanbul Agop lines, but it is nearly impossible to find a ride from them, for example, that has enough stick clarity to drive a band. What I mostly get is a stick sound that is buried under wash, regardless of weight. The crashes are a little better - especially the Traditional line- but not much.

This led me to start looking at sort of equivalent cymbals from Paiste (Masters) and Zildjian (Constantinoples). I'm just wondering, what are people's thoughts on these cymbals as compared to Istanbul Agops?
I don't have any basis for comparison (never played the Agops or Paiste), but the characteristic you are describing that you want from a ride I've found to be exactly what my K Cons give me. You do need to audition the cymbals... Zildjian's just vary too much from one cymbal to the next in the same model/size. I've found Memphis Drum Shop's videos to be very helpful in that regard. Have bought three different K Cons from them (exact cymbal from the video) and they've all been winners. I've also had success with another Zildjian cymbal where I found one on Memphis Drum Shop's website that was within a few grams of one that I wanted to buy on Reverb (bought the one on Reverb), and that turned out great too. There are a lot of different K Con models, so I'd suggest doing a lot of listening to the various models on both Memphis Drum Shop's website and on Zildjian's website. Hope that helps...
 

Masecar

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 23, 2015
Messages
62
Reaction score
118
Location
Raleigh, NC
I don't like K Cons. The whole overall character just doesn't appeal to me; like they're lacking a certain oomph. The normal K Custom line lacks a certain subtlety to my ear.

The Paiste Dark Energy MkII is one of the best all-around rides around for my taste, with the Masters Dark Crisp coming in shortly behind. They're both medium-ish weight (I think the Dark Crisp is a little heavier) and I could see either one working in just about any style, with the appropriate drumstick. They both have nice strong bells, but comparing the two right next two each other the Dark Energy won for me due to its slight top end extension, which may or may not work for you.

The Sabian Artisan rides are also worth looking into. I've got a 22" Artisan Medium that is as close to a 70s Turkish K as any current production cymbal I've heard. Think 70s Tony Williams but slightly less raucous.
 

Topsy Turvy

Very well Known Member
Joined
Feb 27, 2017
Messages
1,000
Reaction score
429
Location
United States
I don't like K Cons. The whole overall character just doesn't appeal to me; like they're lacking a certain oomph. The normal K Custom line lacks a certain subtlety to my ear.

The Paiste Dark Energy MkII is one of the best all-around rides around for my taste, with the Masters Dark Crisp coming in shortly behind. They're both medium-ish weight (I think the Dark Crisp is a little heavier) and I could see either one working in just about any style, with the appropriate drumstick. They both have nice strong bells, but comparing the two right next two each other the Dark Energy won for me due to its slight top end extension, which may or may not work for you.

The Sabian Artisan rides are also worth looking into. I've got a 22" Artisan Medium that is as close to a 70s Turkish K as any current production cymbal I've heard. Think 70s Tony Williams but slightly less raucous.
Thank you very much for your thoughts. Do you find the Dark Energy to ever be a bit overpowering? I have heard a couple of other people make that comment, so I'm just wondering if it is a common issue.
 

Topsy Turvy

Very well Known Member
Joined
Feb 27, 2017
Messages
1,000
Reaction score
429
Location
United States
I don't have any basis for comparison (never played the Agops or Paiste), but the characteristic you are describing that you want from a ride I've found to be exactly what my K Cons give me. You do need to audition the cymbals... Zildjian's just vary too much from one cymbal to the next in the same model/size. I've found Memphis Drum Shop's videos to be very helpful in that regard. Have bought three different K Cons from them (exact cymbal from the video) and they've all been winners. I've also had success with another Zildjian cymbal where I found one on Memphis Drum Shop's website that was within a few grams of one that I wanted to buy on Reverb (bought the one on Reverb), and that turned out great too. There are a lot of different K Con models, so I'd suggest doing a lot of listening to the various models on both Memphis Drum Shop's website and on Zildjian's website. Hope that helps...
The KCon Medium ride was recommended a while back, but you are right in that they vary quite a bit. Some are too washy, others too clangy. It's a crap shoot when I'm buying online.
 

Masecar

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 23, 2015
Messages
62
Reaction score
118
Location
Raleigh, NC
Thank you very much for your thoughts. Do you find the Dark Energy to ever be a bit overpowering? I have heard a couple of other people make that comment, so I'm just wondering if it is a common issue.
Definitely not. It's unlathed on the bottom and it only gets so loud. Blends really, really well with my HHX Complex Thin Crashes.
 

JDA

DFO Star
Silver Supporting Member
Joined
Aug 7, 2005
Messages
23,524
Reaction score
12,477
Location
Jeannette, Pa.
I have been playing Istanbul Agop for a bit and have been frustrated in my search for all-around rides/crashes. I love the dark, complex sounds that I get from most of the Istanbul Agop lines, but it is nearly impossible to find a ride from them, for example, that has enough stick clarity to drive a band. What I mostly get is a stick sound that is buried under wash, regardless of weight. The crashes are a little better - especially the Traditional line- but not much.

This led me to start looking at sort of equivalent cymbals from Paiste (Masters) and Zildjian (Constantinoples). I'm just wondering, what are people's thoughts on these cymbals as compared to Istanbul Agops?
There's no way of telling the kind of weight you play-with (understand?) touch; sticks a hundred other things; But you may need more Weight in the Cymbal..which doesn't make it "not Dark" just a heavier version of the ones you don't like...
off the top-of-my -head there's the K Dark medium Ride, there's a Sabian HH that used to be Chester Thompson's model, there's a dozen Bosphorus Traditional 22" medium rides..that get up there - 26-2700 and beyond in grams weight for a 22..
There's an Idris Agop and likely other Istanbuls. medium weight dark Ride in any of
 

Topsy Turvy

Very well Known Member
Joined
Feb 27, 2017
Messages
1,000
Reaction score
429
Location
United States
There's no way of telling the kind of weight you play-with (understand?) touch; sticks a hundred other things; But you may need more Weight in the Cymbal..which doesn't make it "not Dark" just a heavier version of the ones you don't like...
I have tried acorn 5a and barrel-tipped 5a (or close to 5a) from Vater. I have a 30th Anniversary 22" ride from Istanbul Agop that weighs just about 2400. I also have a Mel Lewis that is close to 2500 grams. Even the Traditional 22" Medium ride that I had from Istanbul Agop was too washy though.
 

JDA

DFO Star
Silver Supporting Member
Joined
Aug 7, 2005
Messages
23,524
Reaction score
12,477
Location
Jeannette, Pa.
well now you know what to do.
you want something close- to a not-overly- complex- but plain simple- dark ride.
you have to make 5,6..12 attempts, we all do
or may get lucky and get it in 3.
but nothing -stationary- is ever satisfactory - till you get it out on stage and the entire event goes well- and you say to self 'my that was a good decision' . In isolation one can get aggravated with everything and anything.
Only test is out there on stage or at home recording under a mic.
Other times you just have to walk away and wait for a better day.
 
Last edited:

Acidwash

Well-Known Member
Gold Supporting Member
Joined
May 22, 2020
Messages
137
Reaction score
214
Those Agop Special Edition Jazz Rides may be the answer. I have a 20” and the stick is loud and clear
 

Rick

Very well Known Member
Joined
Nov 29, 2018
Messages
645
Reaction score
561
Location
Atlanta
The KCon Medium ride was recommended a while back, but you are right in that they vary quite a bit. Some are too washy, others too clangy. It's a crap shoot when I'm buying online.
That's one of the cymbals I have (K Con Medium 20"). I like it a lot. It has great stick definition and a nice wash too. I'm using it for a Broadway tribute show I'm going to be playing in a couple of weeks. The other two I have are a 20" K Con Light with 3 rivets and a 20" K Con Philly Joe Jones. I got all of these from Memphis Drum Shop. I pretty much keep the K Con Light on the kit at all times, and I switch between the Medium and Philly Joe as a second ride depending on the gig. The Philly Joe has good stick definition but more wash than the medium... and it's lower in pitch and I'd say a bit darker.

I agree about buying online being a crapshoot. Except, like I said before, those videos from Memphis Drum Shop kinda change that equation... at least for me. I've found the sound they get in those videos to be pretty darn close to what the cymbal really sounds like in person. Of course, you have to adjust for the room/acoustics, etc. But every time I've bought one of those cymbals, it's come in sounding exactly like I expected it to sound. I do a lot of careful listening though before purchasing...
 

Tracktuary

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 24, 2018
Messages
287
Reaction score
328
Location
MKE
I know what you mean regarding Agops. I've always been underwhelmed when hearing them out front, as well. A friend of mine plays in an alt-country band and the stick of his Agop Signature was non-existent. I saw Carter McClean do a drum clinic once; his Ludwigs filled up the room so nicely, but once again, the Agops were way underneath. The stick sound is more of a "zing" than the Zildjian "tang." There isn't the depth. And the complexity you refer to is just poorly tuned dissonance. Look elsewhere!

If you want stick, Zildjian or Paiste are pretty solid choices. Just don't get a Kerope as it may land you in the same spot. The K Dark Medium mentioned throughout this thread is a nice place to start. The Z cup is untouchable.
 

jb78

Very well Known Member
Silver Supporting Member
Joined
Jul 15, 2013
Messages
519
Reaction score
193
I highly recommend a K Con Medium for what you're describing. It's dark, complex, but has stick definition and volume. I also found that I enjoyed the definition more once I switched to barrel tip sticks.
 

Topsy Turvy

Very well Known Member
Joined
Feb 27, 2017
Messages
1,000
Reaction score
429
Location
United States
I highly recommend a K Con Medium for what you're describing. It's dark, complex, but has stick definition and volume. I also found that I enjoyed the definition more once I switched to barrel tip sticks.
Thank you very much for the suggestion. I’m seriously considering it.
 

tbird8450

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 15, 2021
Messages
117
Reaction score
137
I've always liked Agops for the most part, but I've never really heard any that I felt I needed to have until the new jazz traditionals. I just snagged this from Memphis, as it is absolutely spot on to what I've been looking for in terms of a darker ride than what I currently use:


They may be worth a look for you as well.
 

Matched Gripper

DFO Veteran
Joined
May 28, 2019
Messages
2,310
Reaction score
2,039
My Paiste 20” New Dimension Sound Creation Dark Ride - it’s easy to find one on Reverb or eBay just like it. I think you could pair it with anything.

great stick, dark, not too much wash

easy to control

Very nice cymbal! I’ve never seen one like it in a drum shop. It seems that Paistes have always been somewhat limited around here.
 

JDA

DFO Star
Silver Supporting Member
Joined
Aug 7, 2005
Messages
23,524
Reaction score
12,477
Location
Jeannette, Pa.
do a little dance.... make a little love....sheik yer bootie... sheik your bootie ; ) (lol
 

michiganice91

Very well Known Member
Joined
Dec 16, 2017
Messages
572
Reaction score
278
Location
California
My Paiste 20” New Dimension Sound Creation Dark Ride - it’s easy to find one on Reverb or eBay just like it. I think you could pair it with anything.

great stick, dark, not too much wash

easy to control


Agreed, SCDRs so not have an overbearing wash like some lighter dark rides too. Oh....and I do have one for sale on the cymbals for sale page too :p
 


Top