Do you have what it takes? A listening challenge

cathartic_j

Senior Member
Hi all,

Without going too much into the back-story, I found myself being recorded a couple weeks ago, and I recently received a fairly rough mix of the results. On my first listen, I was a little surprised by was the sound of one particular cymbal; it definitely sounds a bit different in the recording than it does from behind the kit.

So, here's my challenge: using the 15-second clip I've attached below, guess the make and model of the cymbal! Since I know there's an endless array of cymbals out there -- as well as an infinite number of variables that goes into what you hear in a recording -- I'm going to give a little background info and a few hints.

Two overheads were capturing the cymbal (I also had a kick mic, but I don't think the cymbal was bleeding into it very much), and to my knowledge, only volume has been adjusted on each track. (No effects added.) The cymbal is a little over four years old, and has never been cleaned. (Aside from dusting, of course!) However, it's never been buried/soiled/used in a cult ritual to darken its tone. It is a 20" ride.

Can you guess who made this cymbal, and what model it is?
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If this proves to be too challenging for everyone, then I'll add more hints. My hope is that if/when somebody guesses it, someone might add another sound clip and give us some info and ask us to guess a characteristic about the instrument... I thought this could be a fun way to try to practice identifying different sounds!
 

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techristian

Senior Member
Usually you need to DAMPEN the cymbals before recording. Otherwise they can continue to ring in the mix for up to one minute. Which is fine , if that's all you want to hear.

Dan
 

cathartic_j

Senior Member
Thanks to everyone for their guesses so far; I wasn't sure if this was something that people would be interested in trying or not.

I'll go ahead and drop a couple more hints. This cymbal is not particularly common, but I believe most drummers with a bit of experience at least know a bit about the brand. It was not made in the US of A.

Usually you need to DAMPEN the cymbals before recording. Otherwise they can continue to ring in the mix for up to one minute. Which is fine , if that's all you want to hear.

Dan
Thanks for the advice; I'll experiment with that next time. Fortunately, I don't think that happened this time. This section is only bass, guitar, and ride cymbal; the downbeat afterward, more instruments (and drumming) comes in, and the sustain from the ride isn't audible. (Of course, it may still be visible in the mix -- I don't know much about recording...)

I'll bite. I'll say:

Zildjian K Custom Dark
Thanks for kicking off the guessing, Larry, and it seems like we're on the same page once again: that's what I thought of when I heard it, too. So good guess, but try again! :)

Paiste Giant Beat 20"
+1. I was going to guess 2oo2 Ride but thought it was slightly heavier than what I was hearing, so I gave up. I like the GB guess.
Nope. I've never played a Giant Beat, though, so it's interesting to learn that they might sound similar to this.

22 k custom medium ride??
Similar to Larry's guess, but I would say that Larry is closer.

which overheads were being used?
Good question, and something I should have thought to find out before posting. I'll try to find out and post later today.

Ahem...

2020202020202020
:) Also, awesome hidden message -- I'll have to use that sometime...

Well at least one can say the cymbal or guitar/bass are not tight :).

Other than that, I'd say a medium weighed cymbal.
Ouch, I was hoping this wouldn't turn into a "my playing" thread...

However, I do think it's pretty close to what was written, though we're definitely playing under tempo. (This was a moderately weird experimental piece, if that explains anything.) I've posted a MIDI that the composer sent us during rehearsals if you're curious to hear what the "exact" should sound like, if played with crappy plastic instruments. However, the MIDI doesn't really bring out the accents at all, so you'll have to trust me that I placed those correctly. :)

It is a medium ride.
 

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Witterings

Silver Member
You couldn't work it out from listening to it, I don't know if you've ever been in a shop and tried 2 of exactly the same make and model cymbal but no 2 cymbals sound alike, I've tried it with Sabian AAX Stage crashs and with a Zildjian K Hybrid and they both sounded totally different !!
Sorry don't mean to be a kill joy but if someone does get it it's by luck rather than judgement.
How about you post a reward of $1000 to whoever gets it right, that'd make it a bit more interesting and increase the number or responses :)
 

Pollyanna

Platinum Member
I'm nowhere near as knowledgeable with gear as others here but I'd guess a flat ride. Probably miles off lol
 

Andy

Administrator
Staff member
Ok, I'll have a bite. I know where Polly was coming from with her flat ride suggestion. There's an undertone there that's normally better resolved with a bell. I can smell a bit of Turk in there. Something about the sustain. I'm guessing (and it is a real punt), early Paiste with Diril input or Whaun. As for size & weight, I haven't a clue, but I'll give it a go; Light wood tip sticks (or the worst mics ever) so I'm going medium, B20, small bell, 20". Dark so either lightly lathed underneath or no lathing at all.
 

cathartic_j

Senior Member
which overheads were being used?
Okay, I have an answer now: it was a pair of Audix F15 mics.

You couldn't work it out from listening to it, I don't know if you've ever been in a shop and tried 2 of exactly the same make and model cymbal but no 2 cymbals sound alike, I've tried it with Sabian AAX Stage crashs and with a Zildjian K Hybrid and they both sounded totally different !!
Sorry don't mean to be a kill joy but if someone does get it it's by luck rather than judgement.
How about you post a reward of $1000 to whoever gets it right, that'd make it a bit more interesting and increase the number or responses :)
Yeah, I do realize that cymbals have some variation in sound, even when they're made by the same manufacturer as part of the same line. That was why I tried to give some additional info (age, cleanliness, etc.). I agree that multiple cymbals could end up sounding like this for a variety of reasons, from the acoustics of the room to the type of stick being used. That's why I called it a challenge. :)

I had actually contemplated an award before posting, but I couldn't come up with anything that I'd really be willing and able to do that would be much more enticing than bragging rights...

I'm nowhere near as knowledgeable with gear as others here but I'd guess a flat ride. Probably miles off lol
It's not a flat ride, but the bell isn't one of its strong suits.

Let me guess, is that an UFIP ride or maybe more desirable like a spizz (Spizzichino).
To be honest, I don't know anything about those brands, so thanks for turning me onto something new to check out!
 

cathartic_j

Senior Member
... and, assuming that I'm reading a typo and there's not some tiny company out there named Whaun, I'm going to say that keep it simple called it. What you listened to was a 20" Medium Wuhan S-Series ride. He was also right about the stick type (they were Vic Virth SD4 Combos), as well as the bell size and alloy (B20). However, it is lathed. (He also got the diameter right, but reading comprehension wrong. :p) All in all, a very impressive showing!

Thanks to everyone who dared to guess, and hopefully this was interesting enough that somebody will try another one. If not, then I guess we'll just let this thing whither and die without fanfare.


Ok, I'll have a bite. I know where Polly was coming from with her flat ride suggestion. There's an undertone there that's normally better resolved with a bell. I can smell a bit of Turk in there. Something about the sustain. I'm guessing (and it is a real punt), early Paiste with Diril input or Whaun. As for size & weight, I haven't a clue, but I'll give it a go; Light wood tip sticks (or the worst mics ever) so I'm going medium, B20, small bell, 20". Dark so either lightly lathed underneath or no lathing at all.
 

mind_drummer

Platinum Member
Thanks to everyone for their guesses so far; I wasn't sure if this was something that people would be interested in trying or not.

I'll go ahead and drop a couple more hints. This cymbal is not particularly common, but I believe most drummers with a bit of experience at least know a bit about the brand. It was not made in the US of A
To be honest, I don't know anything about those brands, so thanks for turning me onto something new to check out!
The reason I said UFIP and Spizz is that you said yourself "most drummers with a bit of experience at least know a bit about the brand"...


Now is this a Dream cymbal ride (which I doubt)...

Edit: I just found out it was a Wuhan
 

Andy

Administrator
Staff member
... and, assuming that I'm reading a typo and there's not some tiny company out there named Whaun, I'm going to say that keep it simple called it. What you listened to was a 20" Medium Wuhan S-Series ride. He was also right about the stick type (they were Vic Virth SD4 Combos), as well as the bell size and alloy (B20). However, it is lathed. (He also got the diameter right, but reading comprehension wrong. :p) All in all, a very impressive showing!

Thanks to everyone who dared to guess, and hopefully this was interesting enough that somebody will try another one. If not, then I guess we'll just let this thing whither and die without fanfare.
Whoohoo! I've even impressed myself. A lot of good luck guess work though. Sorry about the Wuhun typo. Too fast on the keyboard and, as usual, not enough skill. To be honest, that sound clip could have been almost any medium cymbal of Turkish origin. The Turks just have that little song playing underneath. I'm a great fan of Murat Diril cymbals so I've been brushing up on my knowledge. If you really want to gen up on Turk stuff then speak to Steamer, although he's pretty sold on 1 make.

No prize for KIS then?
 

cathartic_j

Senior Member
The reason I said UFIP and Spizz is that you said yourself "most drummers with a bit of experience at least know a bit about the brand"...
... which is why I'll have to read up on them! :)

Whoohoo! I've even impressed myself. A lot of good luck guess work though. Sorry about the Wuhun typo. Too fast on the keyboard and, as usual, not enough skill. To be honest, that sound clip could have been almost any medium cymbal of Turkish origin. The Turks just have that little song playing underneath. I'm a great fan of Murat Diril cymbals so I've been brushing up on my knowledge. If you really want to gen up on Turk stuff then speak to Steamer, although he's pretty sold on 1 make.

No prize for KIS then?
Hahaha, no worries about the typo ... since mind_drummer brought up a couple companies I knew virtually nothing about (I was pretty sure I knew that they were Italian, but not much beyond that), I thought that "Whaun" might be another demonstration of my ignorance.

From behind the kit, that cymbal (as well as most of the other handful of Chinese-manufactured cymbals I've played) had considerably more wash, less definition, and more "trashy" undertones than what came out in the recording. Not that it's a bad thing, but I agree that it sounded more like a Turkish one. (Based on my admittedly inferior experience with Turkish cymbals...)

As for the prize, I thought about offering to buy you a pair of your favorite sticks (expecting you to not try to prey on my generosity by requesting these), but I don't think I'm willing to do international shipping. So, I figured that instead I'd just make a little tribute to you here on DW ... so check out my new signature below! (If you have something under 100 characters you'd prefer instead, just let me know. Otherwise, I'll leave this for a month or two.)
 
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