Sabian custom shop experiment...

mike d

Silver Member
I have a set of 14" Sabian Apollo hats that I love the sound of, but they just don't have the volume/cut/attack that I'd like (open, closed or in-between). I have a set of 13" Evos that I like too, and they have more volume, but not the trash/darkness I like in the Apollos, so... I'm thinking of having a new top hat made from the Sabian custom shop that's a little thinner than the Apollo and some other changes to increase volume and response. Has anyone tried ordering from the custom shop? If so, how was your experience? Also, any input on a nice dark, yet still loud 14" cymbal configuration is appreciated.

mike d

Silver Member
I've listened to the videos of the 16"s and wasn't a fan. I talked with a couple of the guys at the custom shop and they said maybe a 15" version, but after playing with some combo's I think I'd like anew 14" top with some of the Apollo traits in a thinner config.


...I'm thinking of having a new top hat made from the Sabian custom shop that's a little thinner than the Apollo and some other changes to increase volume and response.
What changes are you making increase volume and response?

Have you considered the effect of your bottom hat? When I think of a high volume hat, I think of Mastersounds with the crimped edges of the bottom cymbal.


Senior Member
That's the interesting thing about the Big and Ugly line, some of them sound great, but they're some of the quietest cymbals I've ever heard.

I borrowed an XSR Monarch 22" for a gig with an acoustic guitar and upright wasn't loud enough! It's a shame because I liked it a lot. It just wasn't loud enough.

It seems the Apollo hats have that exact same woody attack that the Monarch does. If you want to preserve the attack, I wouldn't change the top hi-hat. It would have to be a new bottom, right?

EDIT: Also, going thinner usually means LESS volume, not more.

mike d

Silver Member
All you need to do is pull it off the hat and put it on a stand and wack it next to a thinner crash and you can here a huge difference. Maybe it's not the thickness 100%, but it sure isn't the bottom hat.


Platinum Member
I like my Apollos but they are not what i use in my heavy bands. I have some hhxcelerator hats that are cutting as can be.

As far as custom shop, I had a cymbal made at the meet the masters events when they were in my city and it is very unique, I had them do only partial lathing and its a very dark complex cymbal. Sabian do great work. I'd tell them the SOUND you want and get them to make it, but it is a risk. Your best off finding a cymbal you like, and if you feel the need for custom make only minor changes.

mike d

Silver Member
Well, I have to admit I was WRONG and apologize to EhhSoCheap and IBitePrettyHard. I swapped out the Apollo bottom hat for a 14" HHX Evo bottom that I used to play. The top Apollo over the Evo sounds MUCH better. It definitely has more volume and chic. I was suprized by the difference. It definitely is hitting a sweeter spot that I like (between my Evo set, which were great but a little too bright, and the Apollo's which were dark but lacked volume). It might not be perfect yet, but it's getting closer. Now I'm holding off ordering custom until I can figure out what might make things better. ;)