Prototype

little rock

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What is a prototype cymbal? Back around 2012/13 I bought a Sabian 20" prototype mini bell cymbal off ebay. It is dry but does have a slight bit of wash and a nice crash. There is nothing on it that says if it is an HH, HHX, etc., what it is supposed to be such as ride, crash, etc. All it says is Sabian Prototype. It is a nice cymbal, but I don't have a clue about anything about it. It does make a nice left side ride for my Raw Bell Dry Ride.
 

tomo221

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When Sabian wants to design a new model or series, they make a lot of different cymbals with varying qualities (weights, sizes, profiles, bell shapes, hammering/lathing patterns, etc) to figure out what design will achieve the desired sound.

Eventually they’ll end up with a specific design that becomes the template for how to make a particular model, but all those other cymbals they made along the way aren’t quite the same, but they inevitably each have their own unique sound nonetheless. Sabian stamps those as “prototypes”: unique one-offs that aren’t the same as any models in their standard lineup but are still perfectly well-made and (hopefully) good sounding cymbals.

Sometimes they’re very similar to an existing model, and other times they’re totally weird and bizarre!
 

bolweevil

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I have two Sabian prototypes, both designated as 'HH' in black marker along the bottom of the bell.

One is a 21" ride which really sounds like a lighter version of the Raw Bell Dry Ride. I bought it based on pics and weight alone and got lucky. It's awesome.

The other is a 18" crash, with a rather high bell. In fact it looks like the new 'high-bell' models they are making now (in the HHX line, I think). This one had a video sample on mycymbal.com so I knew what I was getting. See below:

 


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