Pingy Rides vs. Washy Rides


Platinum Member
I used to prefer the pingiest rides I could find, such Sabian Raw Bell Dry Rides and Rock Rides. Then about ten years ago, I bought an AA El Sabor Ride, which was 21 inches in diameter. Since then I have preferred washy rides. Today at practice I used an El Sabor 18" as a crash and a ride.

So what about you: washy or pingy or somewhere in between?

Peace and goodwill.


Platinum Member
I think the music I'm playing usually dictates the kind of ride sound I want/need. That's why I think it's valuable to have at least one of each kind of sound. More than any other cymbal in the kit the ride cymbal is the defining part of your cymbal sound. It can either support or contrast with the music and I've found that choosing the right ride can make or break a gig for me.

While I also subscribe to the "medium ride can do anything" school of thought I've found it can be fun (and eventually rewarding) to chase down the "perfect" ride sound for a particular occasion.


Silver Member
Both, until I can find One Ride to Rule Them All.

I use my HHX RBDR on the pingy end and usually an AA Bash Ride for wash. The Bash still has a strong bell, and would be a perfect all around ride for me if the definition on the around bow was more pronounced


Platinum Member
I play two rides, one on the left and one on the right. The left is a Sabian Pro 20" and the right is an El Rajah 20" (someone please give me info on this cymbal). The Sabian ONLY pings and the El Rajah is washy as hell. I love them both for their own personalities, and use them accordingly. It's the best of both worlds.


Platinum Member
It depends on the music and the size/volume of the band:

60’s laid back instrumental trio - use a washy ride for that, and no crashes. (Armand 20” Ride)

50’s Rock n’ Roll Band - Medium Ride 20” + 1 Crash

11 piece cover band with horns - Heavy Ride (K Custom or A Ping) + 2 crashes

I now have three kits and three sets of cymbals, one for each band. And a set of hardware that lives in the car and a second set for practice at home.


Platinum Member
For many, many years I liked pingy rides. I own a 20" K Custom ride and I still love its sound. But with the type of music I have played for the last few years, I am moving into a washier sound. I was playing an old A Zildjian & Cie medium ride, but just let it go. I'm looking into a K Sweet ride for my next acquisition.


"Uncle Larry"
I like both on my set. My Soultone 19" ride is a washy ride that doubles nicely as a huge crash. I barely use it as a ride, sometimes. The crash is low pitched gorgeous. But when I need a washy ride, it does it great.

I'm more a hi hat guy for leads. And of course vocals. When I ride, it's a departure, not a mainstay. Or a climax to a solo. So I can go from ride to hi hat for the upcoming vocal for a refreshing color change. My pingy ride is not entirely pingy, but it's pingy compared to the 19". I do like pingy a lot though. My Sabian RBDR in hand hammered, AAX and AA....I like them all. Hell I love all cymbals, large and small. My Masterworks 22" ride has a clear piercing bell that I can't use all of it's potential for what I do. But what I am able to use, I totally love. The ride sound is halfway between pure ping and pure wash. Not in your face. I hear it as silvery. I like the low volume shoulder bow spank it gives too. I use that a lot as a nuanced pseudo crash that doesn't get in the way of even vocals.

It's safe to say I have a love affair with cymbals. I'm not a soloist, but as a youngster, I dreamed of a pure cymbal solo.

I should do it.

Swiss Matthias

Platinum Member
I tend to like dry and low pitched rides. So is that pingy or washy :)?

I currently have and use (all Meinl Byzance):

22" Spectrum ride
24" Extra Dry Medium ride
22" Sand Crash ride
24" Big Apple Dark ride

Planning to sell my beloved Spectrum ride for a 21" Polyphonic ride though.
Which will be more washy :).


Gold Member
I like a bit of both. It all depends on what the song calls for.

I alternate mostly between a 21" Sabian AA Dry Ride (pingy) and a 20" Sabian Hand Hammered Manhattan Ride (quite washy)

Haven't found the perfect in-between cymbal yet, although I do have plans for a future purchase which I think will do it all but I'll need to play the cymbal in person again before pulling the trigger.


Senior Member
I like a bit of both. It all depends on what the song calls for.

I alternate mostly between a 21" Sabian AA Dry Ride (pingy) and a 20" Sabian Hand Hammered Manhattan Ride (quite washy)

Haven't found the perfect in-between cymbal yet, although I do have plans for a future purchase which I think will do it all but I'll need to play the cymbal in person again before pulling the trigger.
I went from washy paiste to "pingy" Sabians and now to istanbul style washy. However, I'd ideally use two rides, one washy and one pingy. Or alternating depending what setlist or style... however the biggest rides the better, I now use a TRX 24" ultra thin ride and hopefully will add some type of pingy ride a bit later.


Platinum Member
If I HAD to chose ONE, it would be washy. You can crash it.

You can still get a 'ping' out of a washy ride playing higher on the bow, but not vice versa.
Zildjian K Custom Hybrid ride..... best of both worlds. Has a pingy bell area, and a washy area, so to speak:

"The 21" K Custom Hybrid Ride offers excellent versatility and a great breadth of sound with a full body of overtones. Designed with one of Japan's top drummers, Akira Jimbo, the cymbal's unlathed, buffed center provides defined stick attack and a strong bell. The outside lathed edge increases spread and crashability providing overtones you would expect from a thinner, lathed cymbal."

Its like two ride cymbals in one.


Platinum Member
Another washy convert here. I had a Paiste Dimensions 24" Mega Bell. 22 Earth Ride. Pingiest I have is a 2002 Heavy Ride but that's nowhere near as heavy as the aforementioned rides.

As long as I have a clean cutting bell that's a winner. I have my A 22" medium for that but the K/2002/AA/HH/Byzance.....and the standard medium ride by every other cymbal makers are all as versatile as each other and have just the right amount of wash

A ride should be crashable if you need it to be. Pingy rides are a bit of a one trick pony, they sound too harsh to me now and the feel is too table toppy.

Swiss Matthias

Platinum Member
The longer I play and the more cymbals I played I believe when in doubt a ride
should rather be a bit too washy than too pingy, because in the mix the "ping"
always seems to get through, and the wash tends to be more in the background,
especially through microphones.

The same as with the toms: People muffle them to death, because they want the
perfect sound from the drummer's position, but to the audience there's no tone
left then.


Gold Member
My first "ride" cymbal was a 20" Zildjian. There was no "ride" designation when I bought it (at a pawn shop c.1968) and I had no idea what I was buying; I just wanted what Ringo used. I loved it, used it in all my performances (school musicals, band gigs, etc.) sold it 20 years later when my interests moved to other things (e.g., women, long-distance cycling).

In 1995 I walked into a drum shop with $2000 cash and did a blind cymbal test. I didn't want to be swayed by brand. I walked out with Paiste Sound Formula Dry Ride. It's sound was 90% ping, 10% wash. I used it for about 10 years then tired of its sound 'cuz I was playing different music (less guitar rock, more vocal/keys).

It took me several years and several purchases to find the cymbal that my mind was hunting for. I wanted plenty of wash but also a defined ping, and with a loudness that slightly under my other cymbals.

Demo 1.

Demo 2.

But about a year ago I switched from 5A sticks to 5B and, naturally, it affected how the cymbal sounds. With the 5B, there's a much higher wash-to-ping ratio because the stick is heavier. I auditioned several cymbals, ending up with a Paiste Modern Essentials 22" ride. I don't have any videos of that cymbal though.


Senior Member
I always have two rides at a time in my setup - a more pingy one as the main ride, and a more washy one as the crash-ride. My favorite of these combos is my 2350-gram 1960s Avedis Medium-Thin Ride as a crash-ride, and either my 2930-gram 22" K Dark Medium Ride or 3799-gram 24" Meinl Byzance Traditional Medium Ride as a main ride. However, I do have a 2294-gram 20" A Medium Ride that has more of an old-school "tah" sound instead of a defined ping, and I like to use it as my main ride when I am covering Buddy Rich, Louie Bellson, and big band music from the 1940s and earlier, again, with the 22" A as my crash-ride.

I started out preferring very bright and pingy rides, as my first B20 bronze cymbal was a used 20" A Custom Projection Ride that I loved and cherished for nearly three years. As my music of choice switched from rock to jazz, I began acquiring darker cymbals, starting with a 20" K Ride, and ending with buying both a 2718-gram 22" K Custom High Definition Ride and a 2930-gram 22" K Dark Medium Ride over a period of three months. I sold the K Custom, but I still have the 20" K and the 22" K Dark Medium.


Senior Member
I like both 🤔

If I could only have one I'd def choose a washy ride over a pingy ride because I love to crash my ride, but pingy rides are fun to mess with for me. Washy gets the job done most of the time IMO


Silver Member
..I own a 20" K Custom ride..

Such an old one, like for example Weckl etc used at the end of the 80's when K-custom was just a (18, 20 and 22 inch i think) cymbal within the K-series and not specific a 'K-custom ride'..?

If yes, what would you say at this moment is the cymbal that comes most close to that one..?

Just a 'K-custom ride' or another one..?