Tell me About Cymbal Weights

drumhead61

Gold Member
Other than the fact that it is heavier what is the difference tonally if a 20" crash/ride weighs 1820 grams in comparison to 1895 grams? Can one tell the tonal difference?

Thanks for sharing...
 

mofle

Silver Member
Well....

As you know there are more factors than weight that makes the sound of a cymbal. So two 1900 gram cymbals made the exact same way will not sound the same. But if, in theory, you have two cymbals made the same, same ammount of hammerstrokes on the same places with the same amount, you will hear a difference when it is as much as 50+ grams.

What is the reason for your question by the way?
 

Steamer

Platinum Member
. You won't hear much of a variation with that little of a gram weight difference at least not enough to notice any real difference in my view. By example a 1400g pie and then a 1720g pie in say a 18" size you will certainly notice some obvious differences in character, tone and response. With this small of a difference very little.

How each cymbal is made is a big factor too. You can have 2 handmade cymbals of the same size around the same g weight but they will both have their own individual character. Lots of variables to consider.
 

drumhead61

Gold Member
thanks guys, I did not think that such a small amount would make a difference, but wondered anyway...I am looking at some and was wondering why they had this variation in the same cymbal, guess they just lay em out there and hammer away and if it is off a few g's no biggie!

So, the heavier I go I should have more character as you say Stan?
 

Steamer

Platinum Member
!

So, the heavier I go I should have more character as you say Stan?
No. A different set of characteristics or character Jim. A different set of sound characteristics between thinner and thicker, heavier cymbals in general.

Thinner lighter cymbals in general are quieter, lower pitched and are much more responsive to even a light touch with a stick having more wash especially in ride cymbals. Heavier cymbals have more meat on the bone sound wise with more body of tone and usually are higher pitched in general. For rides this usually means a higher pitched cymbal with more of a penetrating strong ping to the stick sound . For crashes more body of tone, longer ring and more volume when they open up in heavier weights. Thinner crashes have more of a immediate quick response when played hard. Thinner rides more wash less defined stick. These rules can be broken {as you will see in my next paragraph} but this is some generally accepted characteristics between cymbals of differing weights of similar sizes.

With some complex in character handmade cymbals you can have both elements of thin and heavy cymbals in one pie but that's all up to the hands of a trained artisan to pull this difficult trick off. Good example would be my 3025g Epoch ride. Great strong woody stick click sound but not particularly "pingy" per se with a nice bite with bright tones in the mix for projection for a big stage higher volume situations. This combined with a very low underlying dark character and fundamental pitch with a good degree of wash having a quick dark crash you would expect from a much thinner and lighter pie. Best of both worlds in one cymbal but not the norm you would expect in general from a 3025g 22" ride cymbal.
 
Last edited:

drumhead61

Gold Member
No. A different set of characteristics or character Jim. A different set of sound characteristics between thinner and thicker, heavier cymbals in general.

Thinner lighter cymbals in general are quieter, lower pitched and are much more responsive to even a light touch with a stick having more wash especially in ride cymbals. Heavier cymbals have more meat on the bone sound wise with more body of tone and usually are higher pitched in general. For rides this usually means a higher pitched cymbal with more of a penetrating strong ping to the stick sound . For crashes more body of tone, longer ring and more volume when they open up in heavier weights. Thinner crashes have more of a immediate quick response when played hard. Thinner rides more wash less defined stick. These rules can be broken {as you will see in my next paragraph} but this is some generally accepted characteristics between cymbals of differing weights of similar sizes.

With some complex in character handmade cymbals you can have both elements of thin and heavy cymbals in one pie but that's all up to the hands of a trained artisan to pull this difficult trick off. Good example would be my 3025g Epoch ride. Great strong woody stick click sound but not particularly "pingy" per se with a nice bite with bright tones in the mix for projection for a big stage higher volume situations. This combined with a very low underlying dark character and fundamental pitch with a good degree of wash having a quick dark crash you would expect from a much thinner and lighter pie. Best of both worlds in one cymbal but not the norm you would expect in general from a 3025g 22" ride cymbal.
STAN...thank you very much that was perfect for me to grasp...that was exactly what I was looking for in an answer...YOU ROCK!
 

caddywumpus

Platinum Member
No, actually he jazzes...:)
He certainly does...

There are many, many, many characteristics of a cymbal that will affect the sound. Lately, I've been looking into older Zildjians with flanges (noticeable, sudden direction changes in the profile), and I dig those. A lot.
 

Cymbalrider

Pioneer Member
A good way to understand this is to go on cymbalsonly.com and listen to the soundfiles of say a Zildjian K ride around 2200g and then one around 2000g. Same model, same hammering (now that everything is computerized) but different weights. The major factors in weight is sensitivity, sustain, and brightness (but not necessarily pitch-which has more to do with the profile) However, there are exceptions which are specially made, for example heavy, dark, dry rides and thin, bright, splashes. The best cymbals in my opinion are ones around the thin side of medium (or the heavy side of thin) where you get a nice versatile sound--pingy,washy,crashable,rideable all in one. Then you can choose something flatter (Zildjian K, Sabian HH) or something with a higher profile (Zildjian A, Sabian AA) for different tones once you have the sound picked out. Then come the textures--more hammering (trashier sound [think HHX Legacy, Constantinople]) unfinished (Sabian Raw, Bosphorus Turks, etc)
 

tbmills

Gold Member
i want to weight my cymbals but i dont want to buy a $15 scale.

where can i weight my pies to within 5 grams? would a packaging store (ups, fedex) have that sensitive of a scale?
 

Steamer

Platinum Member
i want to weight my cymbals but i dont want to buy a $15 scale.

where can i weight my pies to within 5 grams? would a packaging store (ups, fedex) have that sensitive of a scale?
Local postal outlet does it for me no problem.
 
Top