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Monday, July 27, 2009 - 13:48 PM

17" Hihats

i've never really thought about using anything bigger for my hihats than 14". most of the time i actually use 13".

for the last couple of days i've been talking to a drummer who is playing lots of hip-hop and he turned me on to trying out 17" hats. 

i just returned from our little drumstudio where i tried a mb20 17" heavy crash as bottom, and two different 17" tops: one was a byzance jazz 17" extra thin crash. the other one a byzance traditional 17" thin crash. the first combination (with the extra thin crash) sounded real washy and deep. the second version with the byzance traditional 17" thin crash however is my new favourite. it has a deep and powerful stick sound. a little bit more articulate than the first version. unmistakably noticeable as a timekeeper. what i liked about it the most though was when i played it by foot. it has a real nice, warm, deep chick-sound that really completemented on the ride pattern i was playing. i guess i found a new hihat which i am going to use with my band tomorrow. lets see how it works there, but i am sure it will inspire my drumming and make me play slightly differently. 

what i am trying to do with this really is to encourage you to look into your cymbal bags if you have any unused cymbals which you could use as a new hihat combination, stack, or any other efx-sound. it will defenitely inspire you in your own playing too. have fun!

- norbert

Norbert Saemann

Norbert Saemann

With Meinl since 1990. International A&R, Event Management and Marketing

12 responses to "17" Hihats"

Wolfi aka MissdaRiddim posted on Jul 28, 2009 - 16:54 PM

...must be very funky ;-) - Steve Jordan-like!! (by the way --> make this guy join Meinl ;-))


Ainulindale posted on Jul 29, 2009 - 6:46 AM

normally play 15\" Byzance hats, i actually tried my old 18\" sabian b8 crash/ride (btm) and 18\" MEINL Byzance Traditional Medium Crash (top) - dark, brooding and but surprising sensitive - cool, but probably not for everyday playing ;-)

norbert posted on Jul 29, 2009 - 14:26 PM

it that was so easy....

not for everyday gig sure, but still inspring.

maceo posted on Aug 01, 2009 - 11:54 AM i really hope for bigger meinl byzance-hats!!!

my dream would be 16\" or 17\" extra dry hats!

Henry posted on Aug 03, 2009 - 15:46 PM

Speaking of hi-hats, I \'ve been wondering what would be the difference between using 13\" and 14\" hats, both in a practice space and live situation.

Would a set 13\" Medium Byzance hats work in a heavy metal band? Can anyone share their experience?

norbert posted on Aug 04, 2009 - 14:27 PM

@ maceo
when you take two 16\" extra dry crashes and use them as hats, you will get a real nice washy yet warm and dark hihat sound. worth a try.
you can also use any other 16\" crash as bottom (slightly heavier) for increased volume and a more defined chick-sound. just get crazy and experiment.

norbert posted on Aug 04, 2009 - 14:29 PM

@ henry
i would not recommend a 13\" hihat for a heavy metal. i am using 13\" in a funk/soul group, and those are perfect there. but i can not imagine using anyhing smaller than 14\" for a rock or even heavy metal gig. for this kind of music i\'ve always used 14\" minimun, better even 15\"

Henry posted on Aug 05, 2009 - 7:26 AM

Thanks Norbert. I wasn\'t sure if a 13\" would cut through the guitar noise. Now I know.

maceo posted on Sep 30, 2009 - 10:35 AM

hi norbert!

thanks for your tip!

since yesterday i have my new dream hihats!

a 16\" extra dry top with the fathat bottom!

sensitiv, trashy, raw, but a lot reserve to rock big stages! absolute great!

(and in combination with a thin crash as bottom they sound wonderful smoky, like in good old jazz days!)

greetz, maceo

Conor posted on Feb 09, 2010 - 0:04 AM

If only I had all the cymbals in the world to experiment with...
I\'ve found quite a cool sound. Thomas Lang sometimes does the 8\" Bell on bottom with 8\" Splash on top for hats, I tried out something similar. 6\" Zil-Bel on top with a 10\" Splash on bottom. Freakin\' awesome white noise trash sound that\'s great for experimenting. When you open it out just a little the the bell jingles with the splash and it sounds great. Highly recommended to anyone with a bell cymbal and a splash cymbal! Nothing like a regular use cymbal (maybe an X-Hat) but great for some experimenting fun.

Josh Carrollhach posted on Sep 08, 2010 - 3:10 AM

I am a Bosphorus guy (sorry, Meinl... Bosphorus actually uses hands to hand-hammer. Dream and Istanbul do as well, but Meinl, Paiste, Sabian and Zildjian are too large foe that to be successful). Anyway, I have 17\" hats and they are amazing. Not too loud, with a low fundamental and endless possibilities. They didn\'t come cheap... both cymbals were more than 300 bucks each, but man is it worth it.

- norbert posted on Sep 08, 2010 - 8:41 AM

hello josh,
all our mb20, byzance, and candela series cymbals are entirely hand hammered in our turkish manufactory. only real human hands are used, no machines or robot devices.
other than that, yes i agree, 17\" hats are great for certain musical applications. have fun!
- norbert

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