Moving on From Zildjian? Thoughts!

dirtcity

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 6, 2010
Messages
437
Reaction score
49
Greetings y'all. Kind of a long read ahead, but I'm looking for some opinions here. Thinking about exploring new options.

So I've played Zildjian my entire 20 year drumming career. I always felt that all the sounds I wanted in my head were covered by either the A series or the Ks depending on my mood. For my main, very loud and very heavy, band, I'm all about huge A cymbals. 24", 20", 21", rides and 16" hats. For a lot of other stuff, I love my Ks... again, 24" ride and 16" hats, etc. I especially loved a pair of 70's 15" hats I let go and miss all the time. I also buy almost exclusively used cymbals and I love that pretty much any A I get is going to have the sound I want even if they differ a little bit individually within the same model.

So why even think about switching? Well for starters, I do NOT like the 24" Medium ride from the A redesign back in 2013. It's just not the same cymbal. It's thinner and doesn't have as pronounced of a ping anymore. I bought one new and it broke within a few months. I unfortunately do break cymbals. My technique is as good as the next guy's, but the music I play calls for some incredibly hard hitting so they do break from overuse. Hence why I buy used cymbals.

I did try a brief affair with Paiste 2002s and I just didn't get along with them. I think I'm a sucker for Turkish style cymbals. Which leads me to new options!

Looked into Soultone as I think I could get an artist deal and they wouldn't be all that expensive to get my ideal live setup. But I have to be honest, in the demos I've seen on Youtube, I'm not in love with anything I've heard. They seem very tinny and small sounding. Are the demos I've seen just bad? Anyone here play them and love them? There's no where that I know of, especially not in West Virginia, to go try some out for myself.

Looked at the Bosphorus traditional line. Seems somewhat in line with Zildjian A, but the sizes seem somewhat limited. And again, no where close to go try any.

Instanbul Agop. Dave Turncrantz of Russian Circles plays the Xist line and I love how they sound. Some of the cymbals seem very affordable, $200 big crashes, but the 24" ride is over $500 while the Zildjian Medium is $385ish. Xist isn't even totally hand hammered, they're more similar to Zildjian A, so why is this one cymbal so expensive? Once again, no where to be found near me.

Meinl Byzance. Specifically the traditional line. I know I like how these sound, but they seem wildly more expensive than a Zildjian A counterpart. Does anyone know why some of the Turkish cymbals are so expensive and others simply aren't?

So that's where I sit. I'd love to start a conversation about the various Turkish makers and people's real world experience hearing or playing them. Why do the prices seem to vary so much? Thanks!
 

Seb77

DFO Veteran
Joined
Apr 11, 2013
Messages
2,450
Reaction score
1,071
Location
Germany
That's unfortunate about the post-2013 As not working for you. I didn't like the A medium beofre, now I'm thinking the 22 might work for me. If you like As, maybe Sabaina AA would be most similar. or is there something like an A 24" ping ride?
A ride cymbal I think would be just right for you would be the Paiste JR Robinson Deep ride. There was one for sale in this forum.
With Turkish cymbals, maybe the prices go up a lot more with large sizes because of the manual labour involved. With Agop, the Waronker and Muhammad signature models come to mind. Mehmet has made some great heavy rides in the past. They all have become more expensive.
 

cplueard

Very well Known Member
Joined
Apr 12, 2015
Messages
515
Reaction score
141
Location
AZ
Like most of the recent turkish lines that don't have a proper history, Soultone tends to sound too breathy. Not bad if you're at a medium to low volume, but it sounds like you're similar to me where you cap out what a lot of the modern turk stuff can do in a live setting and it really thins the tone.

If you don't want to stray too far Sabians tend to be on the cheaper end used and are my preference over Zildjian because they seem to be more consistent from cymbal to cymbal. You'll be able to sit in familiar territory while exploring some slight differences going from Z to S

I'd recommend checking out paiste's signature and signature precision lines, or some used Sound Formula. They're really great cymbals and were always more in my own wheelhouse than 2oo2.

The Xist cymbals are great. The price of the 24" is unfortunate but the line itself is fantastic modern sounding cymbals. Same with the Bosphorus Gold line. Those are the only two turkish lines I've tried that felt and sounded like they were made to get hit and not lose themselves in their own breath.
 

dirtcity

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 6, 2010
Messages
437
Reaction score
49
Totally posted this in the wrong section. My bad! New thread is in cymbals where I meant to post in the first place. Sorry about that, y'all.
 

Germandrummer

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 4, 2020
Messages
171
Reaction score
182
Location
Cologne, Germany
I know a few bits about drums and how they might sound compared to others, but I'm a complete idiot concerning cymbals. Maybe because I don't have any plans to play drums outside of my house but I can tell one thing: after watching hundreds of drum Videos, there is one cymbal line which always catches my attention in a positive way, Meinl Byzance!
 

D. B. Cooper

DFO Veteran
Gold Supporting Member
Joined
Oct 18, 2009
Messages
2,653
Reaction score
1,008
Location
Michigan
Yeah. I've followed along with Russian Circles over the years and Dave's cymbals have always sounded great. Doesn't he use 3 21" rides together? I really liked the 22" Xist ride that I had. Beautiful cymbal. Did everything well. I've thought about getting some more one day, but Zildjian has a lot of really cool stuff these days and I've been happy with them.

I had a brief romance with Bosphorus but I ended up selling them all. They all had this airy quality to that that got old after a while. There's threads about it, but they have a "toy" cymbal feel and sound to me. They make some really nice stuff, it's just not for me.

Have you ever tried or heard Zildjian's other lines? A Avedis or K Custom? Ever played any K Cons? Kerope? A Custom? Check out their website if you haven't, you may be surprised by the diversity of sounds they offer now.
 

mtarrani

DFO Star
Joined
Sep 24, 2006
Messages
9,029
Reaction score
877
Location
Deltona, FL
Interestingly I moved on from Zildjian, which I had been playing since 1964, to Dream Bliss about 12-13 or so years ago. I have played a bunch of Turkish cymbals, including Istanbul (both Agop and Mehmet), Soultone and a stray Bosphorus. Any of those are as good as anything Zildjian make (IMHO - I had been playing vintage A, modern K and K Constantinople, and Armand A series when they were still making them.) As for Sabian, I recently acquired an HH light Ride and a Crescent Hammertone ride and the Hammertone is one of the best rides that I have ever played from any brand. However, the Chinese made Dream Bliss are perfect for my playing style and it would take a spectacular set of cymbals to pry those out of my hands. But that is me.
 

jaymandude

Well-Known Member
Silver Supporting Member
Joined
Jul 3, 2020
Messages
448
Reaction score
397
Well. You’re going to get different answers that fall into two categories. Especially here where we look down with massive amounts of condescension at anyone who breaks cymbals. You should leave now :)

One is what people use. “ I play this “. Which may or may not be helpful. And the other category is what to look at and why. Which might be more helpful.

I agree with the Bosphorous “airier” sound, but that’s maybe in the lighter weights that jazz guys prefer. Don’t know what you’d get movingup in weight. They seems to have priced themselves cheaper, maybe try a 20 or 21 before committing ? The xist sound like theyd work for you. There’s That pesky money issue tho. You could also try A Customs which would be my recommendation.

I’ve tapped on maybe 20 soul tones. They all sucked except for one or two and the guy who had those was the local distributor. So he picked the best for himself.

good luck in your search
 

dirtcity

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 6, 2010
Messages
437
Reaction score
49
Well. You’re going to get different answers that fall into two categories. Especially here where we look down with massive amounts of condescension at anyone who breaks cymbals. You should leave now :)

One is what people use. “ I play this “. Which may or may not be helpful. And the other category is what to look at and why. Which might be more helpful.

I agree with the Bosphorous “airier” sound, but that’s maybe in the lighter weights that jazz guys prefer. Don’t know what you’d get movingup in weight. They seems to have priced themselves cheaper, maybe try a 20 or 21 before committing ? The xist sound like theyd work for you. There’s That pesky money issue tho. You could also try A Customs which would be my recommendation.

I’ve tapped on maybe 20 soul tones. They all sucked except for one or two and the guy who had those was the local distributor. So he picked the best for himself.

good luck in your search
I'm surprised I haven't been shamed for breaking stuff yet! I really do use the glancing blow, I swear. It's just a really hard blow.

I'm not crazy about A Customs. Too shimmery for me. I used to have a 20" ping ride that I actually did enjoy, but I sold that to a buddy a while back.


I may try out a smaller Xist like you said. I'm in the market for a left side 20" crash/ride since mine is.. you know... broken. The 22" Xist ride is just over $200 and the 24" is $511. 22 might do me nicely.
 
Last edited:

dirtcity

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 6, 2010
Messages
437
Reaction score
49
Yeah. I've followed along with Russian Circles over the years and Dave's cymbals have always sounded great. Doesn't he use 3 21" rides together? I really liked the 22" Xist ride that I had. Beautiful cymbal. Did everything well. I've thought about getting some more one day, but Zildjian has a lot of really cool stuff these days and I've been happy with them.

I had a brief romance with Bosphorus but I ended up selling them all. They all had this airy quality to that that got old after a while. There's threads about it, but they have a "toy" cymbal feel and sound to me. They make some really nice stuff, it's just not for me.

Have you ever tried or heard Zildjian's other lines? A Avedis or K Custom? Ever played any K Cons? Kerope? A Custom? Check out their website if you haven't, you may be surprised by the diversity of sounds they offer now.
I believe Dave uses a 22" and two 24" rides. He's probably my favorite drummer going today. He's also why I want a Copperphonic so bad.

And THANK YOU for "toy cymbal." That's the exact sound I hear, but I didn't think to put it that way. That's how all the Soultones I've heard sound to me.
 

jaymandude

Well-Known Member
Silver Supporting Member
Joined
Jul 3, 2020
Messages
448
Reaction score
397
I'm surprised I haven't been shamed for breaking stuff yet! I really do use the glancing blow, I swear. It's just a really hard blow.

I'm not crazy about A Customs. Too shimmery for me. I used to have a 20" ping ride that I actually did enjoy, but I sold that to a buddy a while back.


I may try out a smaller Xist like you said. I'm in the market for a left side 20" crash/ride since mine is.. you know... broken. The 22" Xist ride is just over $200 and the 24" is $511. 22 might do me nicely.
Can you just go with K’s then ? Or that’s $$$
 

Vicey

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 14, 2016
Messages
66
Reaction score
74
Location
FL
I'd think that Agop Xists would be just want you'd want, but you're correct about the pricing of the 24" being completely out of whack with everything else in the line. It's a good argument for using a 22.
 

WaggoRecords

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 19, 2019
Messages
70
Reaction score
57
Since you’ve accepted that your cymbals are going to break, affordability is important, but I would imagine consistency is, too. The Turkish cymbals you refer to tend to vary in sound relative to Paiste’s lines and Zildjian’s S series. Even if you don’t like the 2002s, there are still Big Beats and Giant Beats.

If the music you play calls for such aggressive playing, I’m assuming you’re competing with amplified instruments and vocals, so why be picky about your cymbal sound? Seems like cutting through the mix would be most important.
 

dirtcity

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 6, 2010
Messages
437
Reaction score
49
I'd think that Agop Xists would be just want you'd want, but you're correct about the pricing of the 24" being completely out of whack with everything else in the line. It's a good argument for using a 22.
I'm legitimately shocked. $240 for the 22" and $511 for the 24". Ugh.
 

dirtcity

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 6, 2010
Messages
437
Reaction score
49
Since you’ve accepted that your cymbals are going to break, affordability is important, but I would imagine consistency is, too. The Turkish cymbals you refer to tend to vary in sound relative to Paiste’s lines and Zildjian’s S series. Even if you don’t like the 2002s, there are still Big Beats and Giant Beats.

If the music you play calls for such aggressive playing, I’m assuming you’re competing with amplified instruments and vocals, so why be picky about your cymbal sound? Seems like cutting through the mix would be most important.
You do make a good point, but I can't help it. I've always been picky about my tones and textures. Otherwise I'd just play a Pearl Export with some cheap b8 cymbals and call it a day. But I really do care about my sound even if 90% of audience members can't tell a difference.
 

Neal Pert

DFO Veteran
Gold Supporting Member
Joined
Dec 30, 2006
Messages
2,320
Reaction score
1,773
Location
Among the Coastal Elites
It's hard to know what to recommend, to be honest.

Strikes me that for the most part, getting into the Turkish cymbals almost inevitably is going to mean darker and usually thinner. That could be a problem. That said, you could look at the Bosphorus Gold series or some Istanbul Alchemy cymbals if you haven't already.

One thing I know is that if you go through Tony at Cymbalsonly.com he can get Bosphorus to make basically anything for you. You're paying new prices, though, plus possibly a small upcharge. I have a bunch of Bosphorus Traditionals up for sale, but it's probably not really your thing: https://www.drumforum.org/threads/bosphorus-traditionals-set.174638/. I'd imagine you could use the 22 and the 19 as crashes, but the 13" hats may need to be left out of the deal. Ha ha.

And yeah-- it's worth checking out the Zildjian S series. Very reasonable prices.

Another thought, if you're not already: Investing in mics, a small mixer, and some in-ears may make it possible for you to play more quietly if the issue is just being able to hear yourself.
 

Vicey

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 14, 2016
Messages
66
Reaction score
74
Location
FL
There's always the Masters line for a Turkier sounding Paiste. Not cheap, though. The Agop Xist are a bargain--except for the 24.
 

dirtcity

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 6, 2010
Messages
437
Reaction score
49
There's always the Masters line for a Turkier sounding Paiste. Not cheap, though. The Agop Xist are a bargain--except for the 24.
Which is the one I want the most, of course! But I think I might grab a 20" and a 22" Xist here once my new job starts and see how I like them in person.
 

dirtcity

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 6, 2010
Messages
437
Reaction score
49
It's hard to know what to recommend, to be honest.

Strikes me that for the most part, getting into the Turkish cymbals almost inevitably is going to mean darker and usually thinner. That could be a problem. That said, you could look at the Bosphorus Gold series or some Istanbul Alchemy cymbals if you haven't already.

One thing I know is that if you go through Tony at Cymbalsonly.com he can get Bosphorus to make basically anything for you. You're paying new prices, though, plus possibly a small upcharge. I have a bunch of Bosphorus Traditionals up for sale, but it's probably not really your thing: https://www.drumforum.org/threads/bosphorus-traditionals-set.174638/. I'd imagine you could use the 22 and the 19 as crashes, but the 13" hats may need to be left out of the deal. Ha ha.

And yeah-- it's worth checking out the Zildjian S series. Very reasonable prices.

Another thought, if you're not already: Investing in mics, a small mixer, and some in-ears may make it possible for you to play more quietly if the issue is just being able to hear yourself.
I saw that ad! Thought about the 22" a bit, but they seem just a little too airy for me.

I tried an S series 24" ride on our last tour. I wasn't a fan. Way too gongy and weirdly bright. The pre2013 24" A mediums were a perfect balance for me.

And hearing myself isn't the issue, it's the whole vibe of the band. It's just very aggressive.
 


Top