"A" Custom cymbal pack advice

549

Member
"A" Custom cymbal pack advice--UPDATE in reply.

So I took some advice given here for putting together my first kit with regards to putting my money into cymbals first.

Today I looked at an "A" Custom pack that includes 14" Hats, 16" and 18" Medium crashes, and a 20" Medium ride.

I absolutely love the 18" crash, really like the 16", which surprised me as 16 crashes usually don't turn me on, really liked the hats, but the ride left me kinda "meh". Nothing I actually disliked about it, but it didn't grab me either. OTOH hand, a 20" "A" Custom ping ride they had kinda did.

FWIW, I plan on playing mainly 60's-80's pop/rock with maybe a bit of metal thrown in.

I can get the pack for $800 OTD. Good deal? Can I do better buying individually if I have patience and buy used? Do all packs have a least one cymbal that doesn't do it for you?

Advice appreciated.
 
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Odd-Arne Oseberg

Platinum Member
I use A Customs.

My only ride is a 22.

I didn't buy a pack as I use odd sizes, 15, 17 and 19 like Vinnie used to do.

I have played regular A custom hats a lot, as many schools have them, but I prefer my own Mastersound ones. Actually, anyone who tries them loves them.


Have you tried other cymbals? A Customs are great allrounders, but they are pretty thin and certainly not the only game in town.


Generally, most drummers prefer to try before buying. Rides are very music specific. Until you find YOUR sound and even after you'll probably want more than one. Ride and snare are what usually needs to change if it's not working.
 

KamaK

Platinum Member
I have this exact pack + a matching 10" splash.

Great for hard rock. The 18" crash is probably the most endearing piece of the set. The 20" ride is meant to be ridden and has a nice clear bell, though crashing it gives you more of a gong sound than a crash. The hats sound good when bashed, but are lacking a bit if you try to do quiet stuff. Overall, it's a good cymbal set for rock or other rambunctious music where you want the cymbals to cut through the sonic mayhem of a band.

I've been planning to sell my set (I have a post in the classified thread for $500+ bullshi...pping) in favor of a set of stock A's or K's. PM if you want details.
 

549

Member
I use A Customs.

My only ride is a 22.

I didn't buy a pack as I use odd sizes, 15, 17 and 19 like Vinnie used to do.

I have played regular A custom hats a lot, as many schools have them, but I prefer my own Mastersound ones. Actually, anyone who tries them loves them.


Have you tried other cymbals? A Customs are great allrounders, but they are pretty thin and certainly not the only game in town.


Generally, most drummers prefer to try before buying. Rides are very music specific. Until you find YOUR sound and even after you'll probably want more than one. Ride and snare are what usually needs to change if it's not working.
I spent a few hours today playing around on some. I'm just getting started at drumming FWIW.

Paiste PST7's, a few of their Metal series, and some Twenty Customs, Sabian XS20's and AAX's, some Zildijian "K" Dark stuff were what was handy today. Did hit on a an 18" "A" Medium thin next to the 18" "A" Custom also.

Didn't really care for any of the Sabians listed or the PST's, and while the Twenty Customs were nice, they didn't grab me either. Didn't like the few K Darks that were out, and while I liked the standard "A", the Custom sounded better.

Price wise is the the $800 decent for the pack?

Thanks.
 

549

Member
I have this exact pack + a matching 10" splash.

Great for hard rock. The 18" crash is probably the most endearing piece of the set. The 20" ride is meant to be ridden and has a nice clear bell, though crashing it gives you more of a gong sound than a crash. The hats sound good when bashed, but are lacking a bit if you try to do quiet stuff. Overall, it's a good cymbal set for rock or other rambunctious music where you want the cymbals to cut through the sonic mayhem of a band.

I've been planning to sell my set (I have a post in the classified thread for $500+ bullshi...pping) in favor of a set of stock A's or K's. PM if you want details.
Almost my thoughts exactly. The ride seemed fine, but not crashable. While not a requirement, it would be nice if it were. The 18" crash is what actually made me set down at that set. It's simply splendid.

Can I ask why you're moving to regular A's or K's?

ETA:Saw the other post. They are listed for $750, $800 out the door.
 

hippy chip

Silver Member
I love it when noobs buy expensive gear thinking it will make them play better or learn faster---then I can buy it for half price when they give up after 6 months---spending $800 on your first set of cymbals is overkill at best!
 

cDark3r

Member
I have this exact pack + a matching 10" splash.

Great for hard rock. The 18" crash is probably the most endearing piece of the set. The 20" ride is meant to be ridden and has a nice clear bell, though crashing it gives you more of a gong sound than a crash. The hats sound good when bashed, but are lacking a bit if you try to do quiet stuff. Overall, it's a good cymbal set for rock or other rambunctious music where you want the cymbals to cut through the sonic mayhem of a band.

I've been planning to sell my set (I have a post in the classified thread for $500+ bullshi...pping) in favor of a set of stock A's or K's. PM if you want details.
I don't believe that the hats are lacking on the quieter stuff. Just listen to this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hwXCpG9za_Y

Did not think the A customs were this musical until I saw this. And I never expected Steve to play them.
 

549

Member
I love it when noobs buy expensive gear thinking it will make them play better or learn faster---then I can buy it for half price when they give up after 6 months---spending $800 on your first set of cymbals is overkill at best!
LOL. Thus my thread. Don't want to go overboard, but I do believe in "Buy once, cry once" too. If all the cymbals in the pack sounded like the one 18" crash, I'd be unpacking it instead of typing.

This was one of the few sets of cymbals, many well regarded, that didn't sound like cookie sheets, garbage can lids or dinner gongs to my ears.
 

KamaK

Platinum Member
Did not think the A customs were this musical until I saw this. And I never expected Steve to play them.
Steve certainly does a great job with them there. They still cut like mine do though, which works for Gadd because he has remarkable control and good restraint. Perhaps if I were a better drummer, I could find a place for them in my quiet stuff.

When I think of A Customs, I think of this sound.
 

Odd-Arne Oseberg

Platinum Member
If you are more than 14 yo and know you will keep at it those are cymbals you'll always have and enjoy. I started only 6 years ago. First I got my hats, ride and 17 crash. Played those for a year and then got the rest. My china is an Oriental, but the rest is A Customs. I'm pretty well set apart from certain jazz gigs, but even then, with the right sticks, it's not bad at all.

The cheaper stuff will get useless at ome point as it doesn't hold up.

Now, Steve's cymbals in that clip don't look like A Customs at all to me and I've never known him to use them either. However, Vinnie used to use them all the time offcourse.
 

549

Member
If you are more than 14 yo and know you will keep at it those are cymbals you'll always have and enjoy. I started only 6 years ago. First I got my hats, ride and 17 crash. Played those for a year and then got the rest. My china is an Oriental, but the rest is A Customs. I'm pretty well set apart from certain jazz gigs, but even then, with the right sticks, it's not bad at all.

The cheaper stuff will get useless at ome point as it doesn't hold up.

Now, Steve's cymbals in that clip don't look like A Customs at all to me and I've never known him to use them either. However, Vinnie used to use them all the time offcourse.
I'm MUCH older than 14. I'm tempted to just get the A custom 20 Ping ride and 18" A custom crash, but that seems like it wouldn't be quite the deal.

Right now I'm just getting started and all I have cymbal wise is a round metal-like thingy that came with the beginner drumset I bought, and a set of Paiste 802 HH's I got off CL for $40. Realistically, all I probably "need" is a decent ride or crash/ride right now.
 

wildbill

Platinum Member
I'm MUCH
....I'm tempted to just get the A custom 20 Ping ride and 18" A custom crash, but that seems like it wouldn't be quite the deal....

If you like those the best of what you've tried, in the long run getting just those two will be quite the deal.

Even better if you can find them used for a good price.

Sets are great, If you like all the cymbals included. Otherwise, you'll be looking to dump some of them.
Get your ride and a good pair of hats. If you're sure you'll use a crash, get that too.
And get the ones you want, right from the start.
You'll save a lot of time and money that way.
 

BacteriumFendYoke

Platinum Member
Nothing wrong with 8o2 hi-hats. Those are really rather nice if you're into that side of things. $750 is a lot of money. You're much better off buying cymbals one-by-one second-hand.
 

Morrisman

Platinum Member
I think a quality pre-pack like A Customs is an excellent way to get started. The price is good, and you can get playing on good cymbals. Over time your tastes will develop, and with online selling its pretty easy to trade cymbals. So if you find you don't like the Ride, buy a different one and sell yours - it won't cost very much.

Having said that, I quite like the A Custom Ride - I play one in a cover band because its medium, generic, versatile & sounds good in most situations. But if you find yourself specializing in acoustic jazz, or funk, or death metal, then upgrade to the appropriate gear then...
 

Fresh

Senior Member
Big fan of that 18" A custom myself and will probably end up buying myself some Zildjian cymbals in the future (currently a Paiste guy).

No-one can make the decision for you, but in my view, the lack of customization offered by cymbal packs makes it very hard to be perfectly satisfied with what you're getting.

That said, they are great value and A customs will work nicely for the musical styles you listed, as long as you, yourself can tolerate the seemingly minor issues you have with the ride.

Worst comes to worst, you end up buying a new ride, but you still have 4 versatile, high quality cymbals.
 

Brian

Gold Member
I've always been partial to the 17" A custom projection crash.

Personally, I would be looking to buy A custom cymbals used, since they are widely available in good condition. Just to me, $750 or $800 for A customs seems too steep.
 

2underpar

Silver Member
Just my 2 cents. I see you are from Ohio. I live in Pittsburgh and I often search Ohio Craig's List for drum deals. Cleveland and Akron are current hot beds for used gear. I have found some great deals over the past few years.

I kind of collect cymbals and as an example: I have 16", 17", 20" A Custom crash's, 14" Avedis Hats and 21" Sweet ride, all purchased used and probably have $350 - $400 invested (if you want to include gas money).

It's worth a look.
 
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