Zildjian 13" Projection Hi-hats Reviews 5

I was looking for a new pair of hi-hat cymbals to replace my old and decrepit pair. After much browsing, I decided that I wasn't about to purchase new ones. 300$ (can.) makes for a bit of a swallow after spending 1000.00$ (can.) for the rest of my kit. But I found these used at Drum Bazar in montreal and they cost me nothing but a paltry 130.00$ (can.) (used, of course, but in sparkling condition).

Everything about these beauties I like! Though I must admit that at first I was taken aback by their very high pitched quality and their dry, pingy quality, it was only in a recent gig that I got to truly appreciate the way they cut through the mix to deliver bright, controlled tones, and clear definition of stick work (hence the word "projection"). These babies can swing! The chick sound is bright but not "washy", stick is defined but not over-bright, and you can get a nice range of sounds all depending on placement near the edge or closer to the bell. The swish is beautifull and still manages not to go overboard on frequencies. People can hear your disco beat, but will not ONLY hear your disco beat! The big, rounded bell makes for a nice touch. It gives you a powered ping, much akin to FX bells, while in the closed position it sounds dryer, favoring clave-like tones. Perfect for every style, as I find myself playing everything from straight-rock, to jazz, to funk and disco.

While I love their style in show or studio where they can really spice up a mix whithout undue EQ's or FX, I find them a bit bright in solo work. Working in conjonction with my 22" medium heavy sabian ride, which is also a bit dry and high-pitched, I don't get as much clarity of play as I would like. But that is clearly nitpicking, as you can see.

High-polished and smooth, what first strikes the onlooker is their oversized bell. They tend to have a broader curve than we are used to with flatter rock style hats. They are also quite heavy which points to a dense, high quality alloy. Obviously, we are talking about superior quality of craftsmanship, but that is no surprise as they fall into the "A" custom flagship of a top cymbal maker.

I am not one to give a seal of perfection to any instrument maker. Every favorite tool has its ups and downs, and how we incorporate those in the way we work defines us as professionnals in our trade. After all, music is all about compromise. But these hats are just about as close to perfect as you can get. In closing, either you are going to love them, or hate them with a passion.

Christian Robitaille, drummer for Les Globe-Glotters rated this unit 5 on 2002-10-24.

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