B20 or bust

graysonator

Well-known member
I hear you, man I've had entire sets of Paiste 2002s and Signatures. I actually like Zildjian S's more than Paiste 2002s, but Paiste Signatures are VERY hard to beat. Zildjian either hasn't cracked that code yet or doesn't want to fully invest itself in the pursuit of doing so. We'll see what Zildjian's future efforts produce.

In the meantime, I'm enjoying S's quite a bit. Every now and then, I try to find something I dislike about them, but I never really uncover anything that inspires me to kick them to the curb.. My Mastersound hi-hats are excellent, and my Thin Crashes are bright without being obtrusive. There's an underlying mellowness about them that's been quite surprising. The bell of my Medium Ride is nice, and the bow is acceptable, though I wouldn't say it's my favorite ride ever. It sustains a bit too long for my taste.

I usually play a set of cymbals for three to five years, sell them, and replace them with a brand-new set. I'm in my second year with S's. Should I desire a change, A Customs are the most probable destination for me. I'd like to stick with Zildjian, and A Customs have that glassy sound I like so much. Their hammering, lathing, and finish also make them similar to S's.
I know this post is a while ago, but when you decide to switch to A Customs the 20" Medium ride is one workhorse of a cymbal. Played one at GC.
 

C.M. Jones

Well-known member
I know this post is a while ago, but when you decide to switch to A Customs the 20" Medium ride is one workhorse of a cymbal. Played one at GC.
If I ever go the A Custom route, the 20" medium ride will definitely be part of my setup. Regardless of the line of cymbals I'm playing, my ride is always a 20" medium.
 

GetAgrippa

Platinum Member
Well after “my discovery” of the alien origin of the substance in Gretsch silver sealer responsible for great sound -I’m thinking 🤔 f we added silver sealer to molten bronze it should make really good cymbals. Supposedly the unique metal is from a meteorite that must have come from an alternate universe. Ya know I should make a video like the dude who did documentary on Mermaid/Mermen and a significant number believed it ROFL I can send people pieces of the priceless meteorite for a mere 10 grand or so.
 

C.M. Jones

Well-known member
I think they also make a box set with this cymbal in it too
The A Custom box set wouldn't work for me, as it comes with regular hats instead of Mastersound. I play only the latter now. Also, even though my cymbal configuration at any given time is always made up of just one family, I like to buy cymbals separately to get the precise profiles I'm after. I pay more using that method, but the extra cost is worth the satisfaction.

I have no intention of altering my setup right now. I like Zildjian S's a lot. Should I long for a change at some point, however, A Customs would be a probable destination. I'm yet to hear an A Custom of which I disapprove. I find their glassy clarity quite appealing. They're similar to S's in that regard.
 

roncadillac

Member
I know this post is a while ago, but when you decide to switch to A Customs the 20" Medium ride is one workhorse of a cymbal. Played one at GC.
Yes but that A Custom Ping Ride though!!! Talk about glassy. And wickedly musical for how bright and penetrating it is.
 

Zaster

Well-known member
The current 2002 20” ride is a shimmery beauty for pop and r&b ballads etc. I’ve used it for recording and received compliments on how it sat it the mix. I also have an old 18” black label I love for rock/pop. But now I’m working through some jazz books and I can’t make either of them work in that context. Maybe it’s my lack of experience, but the sparkly sound plus bright wash confuses and distracts me. I got one of those 18” uptown rides and it’s perfect, allowing me to hear the pattern clearly without a lot of ringing out everywhere. I’m assuming the alloys have something to do with it, along with the weights.
 

Push pull stroke

Platinum Member
The current 2002 20” ride is a shimmery beauty for pop and r&b ballads etc. I’ve used it for recording and received compliments on how it sat it the mix. I also have an old 18” black label I love for rock/pop. But now I’m working through some jazz books and I can’t make either of them work in that context. Maybe it’s my lack of experience, but the sparkly sound plus bright wash confuses and distracts me. I got one of those 18” uptown rides and it’s perfect, allowing me to hear the pattern clearly without a lot of ringing out everywhere. I’m assuming the alloys have something to do with it, along with the weights.
I hate to be a Philistine, but...I just put a little gaff tape on the underside of any ride that is too ringy for me. It’s a way cheaper solution, and you can pretty precisely control the sound by choosing where on the cymbal to put it, and how much tape.
 

Zaster

Well-known member
I hate to be a Philistine, but...I just put a little gaff tape on the underside of any ride that is too ringy for me. It’s a way cheaper solution, and you can pretty precisely control the sound by choosing where on the cymbal to put it, and how much tape.
I already use a little tape. You can keep adding more until it becomes more like hitting a dinner spoon than what you’d like to hear in a jazz ride, but you can’t lower the pitch or darken the tone.

Also I do a lot of recording and it’s nice to have some options in rides. In that situation I find you need to be careful not to use as much tape as you might think you’d want to hear sitting at the kit because cymbal wash can disappear enroute to the mics and soon you end up with only stick sounds on the track.
 
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roncadillac

Member
The current 2002 20” ride is a shimmery beauty for pop and r&b ballads etc. I’ve used it for recording and received compliments on how it sat it the mix. I also have an old 18” black label I love for rock/pop. But now I’m working through some jazz books and I can’t make either of them work in that context. Maybe it’s my lack of experience, but the sparkly sound plus bright wash confuses and distracts me. I got one of those 18” uptown rides and it’s perfect, allowing me to hear the pattern clearly without a lot of ringing out everywhere. I’m assuming the alloys have something to do with it, along with the weights.
I LOVE my uptown ride.
 

roncadillac

Member
Yeah I just got it a few weeks ago and it’s kinda perfect. Also I really like 18s in general. It’s a great size for playing alone in the prac space, at home etc. And often for recording too (see Dark Side of the Moon! :D)
I've used just my uptown ride and hats (sometimes no hats at all) for all of my applications for almost two years... Maybe over two years now. I don't even remember anymore haha.
 

Push pull stroke

Platinum Member
I already use a little tape. You can keep adding more until it becomes more like hitting a dinner spoon than what you’d like to hear in a jazz ride, but you can’t lower the pitch or darken the tone.

Also I do a lot of recording and it’s nice to have some options in rides. In that situation I find you need to be careful not to use as much tape as you might think you’d want to hear sitting at the kit because cymbal wash can disappear enroute to the mics and soon you end up with only stick sounds on the track.
I would humbly suggest that you can darken the tone with tape. The lows resonate right at the edge of the cymbal, the highs right at the bell, and the mids in-between. Placing tape on the corresponding area will reduce those frequencies. But I agree, if you’re doing lighter, sparser music, that you can’t just tape your way to the right sound, all the time. Light acoustic music needs a ride that is at least within shouting distance of the right sound without any tape.
 

wraub

Well-known member
Shout out to all the drummers out there who bravely play cymbals that sound good to their ears




Newer drummer on a budget, but long-time musician with good ears- I learned a long time ago to listen and find what I like the sound of, and then figure out how to get it or get close with limited funds. As may be expected, I have a mix of cymbals.
I like contrast in cymbals for different accents and flavors, and in with my A Customs and 60s Zildjian ride I have a Paiste PST3, a couple of Meinl HCS and an unknown, tarnished-almost-black cymbal like thing. :D
imo The Paiste fits in well with the other cymbals, which are a mix of "good" and "bad" but all sound just fine to me. Flavors and accents.

I'm totally in the "if it sounds good, it is good" camp here. :)
 
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fobz

Active member
I agree with a lot of the points already made ('play it if you think it sounds good'), but I would suggest that the idea of B20 being better is totally valid, as it's self-fulfilling.
If most cymbal companies buy into the idea that high-end cymbals must be made of B20 and therefore make all of their high-end cymbals from B20, then most good cymbals end up being made of B20. So when someone says 'you should get B20 cymbals because they're better', they're probably not wrong (statistically speaking anyway).

For the record, I like some B8 rides (I have a battered old Amati ride which sounds incredible, the clearest, purest ride I've ever played), I always recommend Sabian B8 rides and entry level Paiste cymbals to my students, and I've owned several non-B20 Bosphorus rides.

But I also love B20 cymbals, and tbh non-B20 crashes just don't appeal to me at all...
 

larryace

"Uncle Larry"
I think the B-20 bias is real because of imprinting. Whatever you were imprinted with...people tend to follow that imprint for life. Think of it this way: What if the whole world was imprinted with the (non Paiste) B-8. When a B-20 cymbal shows up do we think that everyone would drop what they are using right away? Some would I'm guessing, but IMO the majority would stick with what they were imprinted with.

Imprinting is so powerful and it must be considered

Also, consider the fact that B-8, B-12, B-15....I'm guessing they only became available within the last 30 years. Not a lot of chance for imprinting in that short time, especially if the majority of drummers icons are using B-20. How many people here were imprinted with B-8? And how many were imprinted by B-20? That explains the bias IMO.

I would love to see an imprinting experiment on clones where one clone was imprinted with B-8 and the other with B-20. My guess is that the B-8 imprinted person wouldn't care for the B-20 sound....and vice versa....even though I would say that the majority of drummers today think the B-20 sound is "superior"

Imprinting.
 
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MrInsanePolack

Platinum Member
but I would suggest that the idea of B20 being better is totally valid, as it's self-fulfilling.
But that makes the argument false. A self fulfilling prophecy is argumentative fallacy and is false because what is prophetised allows the wanted effect to come to fruition. Example: B20 cymbals are better, and I have one, and it's better than my B8. This is only true for me, not everyone, so the claim that B20 is better is not a valid argument.
 
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