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Crash Cymbals are what most non-drummers think of when they imagine how cymbals sound. Crashes are typically loud cymbals used for playing accents, as opposed to patterns. They are named after the crashing sound they make when you strike them. Sizes range from 13” to 22” . This huge diversity in sizes and weights of Crash cymbals allows you to add all kinds of versatility and colour to your overall sound.
To many beginners, a Ride is simply the name for the biggest cymbal in your set-up. And while it’s true that the lines between Crashes and Rides can get blurry in form, in function they serve two very different purposes. Ride cymbals are used to play patterns or rhythms. In order to allow these patterns to be articulated clearly, Rides are generally larger in diameter and heavier in weight than Crash cymbals, and range in size from 18” to 24”
Hi-Hats are the pairing of cymbals mounted on a specific Hi-Hat stand, which uses a pedal and cable system so they can be played open, closed, or even hands-free. Stepping on the pedal, closes the Hats, pressing them together for a tight, crisp tone. Letting up on the pedal “opens” the Hats, which allows them to sustain. Hats are most often used to play steady patterns of quarter, eight and sixteenth notes. They typically come in sizes ranging from 10” to 14”. Smaller hats generally produce brighter, crisper tone while larger hats are louder and “chunkier” sounding.
Drummers use Effects to add a virtually endless variety of sounds and accents to their performances. Among Effects cymbals, the two most popular are the china and splash.
Chinese cymbals sport a very unique design with upturned edges and limited tapering. As a result, the sound they make is a wonderful combination of noise and complexity that’s most often described as “Trashy”. China Cymbals also come in a super-wide variety of sizes, from 8” Mini Chinas all the way up to monster 22” China cymbals.
Splash cymbals are essentially very thin mini-crashes that range from 8” to 12″. Because of their small size and extra thin weight, they offer super fast attack and very quick decay. Their sound consists almost entirely of high-frequency bursts of white noise with very little complexity. Think of them as the firecrackers of the cymbal world.
For more info look at https://sabian.com/article/the-beginner-series-cymbals-101/
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