Sabian AAX or HHX?

lrod1707

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So after selling off a bunch of mismatched cymbals that I had, I'm shopping for another cymbal set. I went from Sabian years ago (which I loved) to trying out Paiste. I didn't like the really musical sound of the Paiste's. I like a darker sound that's less controlled. I lasted with them a couple of months. I then took the Turkish route but I guess never warmed up to the fact that they don't always work together. I also attempted the Zildjian K custom darks and they seem slightly inconsistent and the quality just wasn't there. They seemed pretty rough. I think a nice matched cymbal set will be a good thing. The only thing I hear that I seem to like from Paiste are the Black 2002 Big Beats but I don't like the ride sound since it lack's a defined bell. So after searching and searching I think I'll be back to Sabian (yes the new ones with the ugly logo!) Good thing the logo's are on the underside! From what I have heard in soundfiles, they sound really great and much better than the old lines. I'm stuck between AAX & HHX and that's what I need to decide on. They both seem like a match, same quality but one's slightly darker than the other one. It's really hard to choose. I mostly play all kinds of rock so both would work. I'm starting out with a nice cymbal pack and working up from there. I know some of these can be mixed but I need to decide which pack I will buy (AAX or HHX) as the starting point. Let me know what you think!
LRod
 
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Tommy D

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AAX cymbals are generally going to be heavier in weight and thus a bit higher pitched and cutting in the mix. HHX are thinner and lower pitched, easier to open up and get a full sound out of on lighter hits, but they don't cut as sharply in the mix. For most rock music AAX will give you the bright and cutting sound you hear on albums.

As someone who owns a lot of Sabians, I prefer the sound and feel of HHX cymbals to AAX ones, but I know that they sound too dark for for most of the rock music I play. It doesn't stop me from playing that music, but I know it doesn't have the right tonality to what I hear in the headphones.
 

equipmentdork

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I love my AAX and HHX cymbals, but I'm surprised you didn't try out Paiste's Signature Traditionals(or maybe you have). That's one hell of a dark but musical sound.


Dan
 

lrod1707

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I love my AAX and HHX cymbals, but I'm surprised you didn't try out Paiste's Signature Traditionals(or maybe you have). That's one hell of a dark but musical sound.


Dan
I haven't tried anything, Lol! It's all been listening to audio sounds online since we're not really going out and about. I haven't paid attention to those 2 Paiste lines but I'll hear them out and see. I'm pretty locked on to the Sabian's though. It's funny that sometimes you seek something else and you end up back to what you started with.
 
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nk126

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I like a darker sound that's less controlled.
HHX

I also attempted the Zildjian K custom darks and they seem slightly inconsistent and the quality just wasn't there.
Probably doesn’t matter now, but in my experience the KCDs don’t have a ton of “K” in them. I have a 17” that I really like, but it’s neither all that dark nor all that thin and trashy. Also have a 20 that’s as much a dark-ish rock ride sound as anything else.
 

jaymandude

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The AAX Xplosion thin is really amazing. To me they are the benchmark for all the new series of big and thin. Much friendlier to play than the regular Xplosion
 

pgm554

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Good cymbals and not so good on both sides of the series.
Played HHX that sounded thuddy and AAX that were superb.
You got to play em.
Not as as pronounced difference as say between a Zildjian K or an A.
 

dtk

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Maybe I'm not recalling correctly but aren't there some crashes in the AAX line that are called Dark? I think I have a 16....which plays nice with an Omni and 18" HHX Evolution.

However...if I were in your shoes/ears and money wasn't a factor...I'd go HHX....to me its like cornbread (sweet and satisfying) and cornbread with jalapenos) ....you're just getting that little extra flavor...
 

Tommy D

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I think all the different B20 series Sabians can play well with each other. I have kits set up with HH/HHX/AAX and even Artisans and they all work well together. The only cymbal I have that is a bit of an anomaly is my 16" AA Raw bell crash. Its not a bad sounding cymbal, but it is a brighter crash than pretty much everything else I own so it can sound out of place with my other cymbals. I'm sure I could gather a set together that it would work well with. It may actually sound good with my smaller Artisan cymbals since those cymbals are so explosive and cutting.
 

SpinaDude

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HHX -- I generally love the way they look, but to my ear they sound a little ugly. There's a harsh tone to them that turns me off. Less of a shimmer and more of a shudder. Is that even a thing? LOL

AAX is definitely more my sound. I like brighter cymbals. Glassy with a nice decay.
 

lrod1707

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HHX -- I generally love the way they look, but to my ear they sound a little ugly. There's a harsh tone to them that turns me off. Less of a shimmer and more of a shudder. Is that even a thing? LOL

AAX is definitely more my sound. I like brighter cymbals. Glassy with a nice decay.
I think cymbals are probably the most subjective thing in drumming. After comparing for days by hearing probably hundreds of files more than 100 times, I bought HHX! I liked the "ugly" sound that you mention, LOL!
I think you probably like a brighter and more controlled sound. I like a darker more uncontrolled sound AKA "ugly", LOL!
 

lrod1707

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So I ended up selecting Brand new HHX's for my newest cymbal set. I purchased the HHX super cymbal set in brilliant finish that includes:

10" splash
14" thin crash
16" thin crash
18" thin crash
14" medium hi-hats
20" medium ride
I also purchased separately:
20" HHX medium crash in brilliant finish.

The AAX's were a tad to bright for my taste and I think this array of HHx's that I bought will be fantastic on my kit. I heard the x-plosion, thin, medium etc.. crashes and the thin's sound the best to my ears in the 14"-18" sizes. The 20" crash sounds excellent in medium as well as the hats & the ride. They all complement each other!
I guess businesses are doing whatever they can to sell based on the current situation. I got a ridiculously good deal by calling Musician's Friend.

I'm looking forward to getting them and playing them!
LRod
 
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lrod1707

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Just got all my new HHX's today. Absolutely stunning both in sound & looks! The sound is exactly what I've wanted. The thin cymbals have a dark sound but they still have brightness to them. They sound somewhere in between AAX's and dark HHX's. They are perfect! I'm officially "All Sabian". No more mismatched cymbals. They are all perfectly sonically matched. Back to the brand I started with and I couldn't be happier.:)
 

SpinaDude

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Just got all my new HHX's today. Absolutely stunning both in sound & looks! The sound is exactly what I've wanted. The thin cymbals have a dark sound but they still have brightness to them. They sound somewhere in between AAX's and dark HHX's. They are perfect! I'm officially "All Sabian". No more mismatched cymbals. They are all perfectly sonically matched. Back to the brand I started with and I couldn't be happier.:)
Dude, that's awesome. New rack...new cymbals...it's like a whole new you!

How are you liking the rack by the way? Do you find it more comfortable/flexible?
 

lrod1707

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Dude, that's awesome. New rack...new cymbals...it's like a whole new you!

How are you liking the rack by the way? Do you find it more comfortable/flexible?
It's the best! I can't believe I was so against them before. What a waste of space (and money) having all the stands I had. The flexibility is great and everything is now perfectly placed. I love it!
 


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