Re: Paiste 14" 2002 SE hats vs 15" Giant Beats
I tell you, I switch to Paiste a little over a year ago from being a long time Zildjian guy. I really like my family of 2002s. I went with the 15" 2002 SE hats. They are a little darker than the 14s I would say. And, I didn't care for them as much in the store, by themselves, as I do when I am playing with my band. I had become very accustomed to 14" New Beats. The New Beats had become my gold standard and basis of comparison. The Paistes began to shine played with my other Paistes and in a "band" setting. The just sound, already mixed-in. I have really begun to appreciate what they bring to the table, and that they mix so well with my other Paistes.
I would try to play them in a few contexts and make a decision from there. Buy what you like, and not just for the great deal. Guitar Center or CL usually has a lot of these used, and for a good price. In the end, you will have these hats for as long as you want, so saving money now, will begin to make less sense as time goes on. I don't see any reason for getting rid of either my New Beats or Paiste Sound Edges. I love them both and would replace both if I ever had to.