Zildjian is one of the best cymbal brands out there. Even many people who don’t play drums have heard of them at some point or another. They’ve been making high-quality cymbals for years, with hundreds of pro drummers using all of their products.

If you’re looking for some new cymbals, you’re most likely to come across a few Zildjians. Here’s a list of some of the best Zildjian cymbals to help you decide on which ones you should get for yourself.

What are the Best Zildjian Cymbals?

IMAGE RECOMMENDED PRODUCTSPRODUCT FEATURES
Zildjian K Custom Dark Set
  • 14” hats, 16” & 18” crashes, 20” ride
  • B20 bronze
  • Dark & rich tones
Zildjian A Custom Set
  • 14” hats, 16” & 18” crashes, 20” ride
  • B20 bronze
  • Bright & full-bodied tones
Zildjian K Custom Special Dry Set
  • 14” hats, 16” & 18” crashes, 21” ride
  • B20 bronze
  • Dry & earthy tones
Zildjian K Constantinople 22” Medium Thin Low Ride
  • Low to medium pitch
  • B20 bronze
  • Warm & lush tone
Zildjian A 14” New Beat Hi-Hats
  • B20 bronze
  • Bright tone
  • Medium pitch
Zildjian S Series Performer Set
  • 14” hats, 16” & 18” crashes, 20” ride
  • B12 bronze
  • Bright & shimmering tones
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Zildjian Cymbal Reviews

Zildjian K Custom Dark Cymbal Set

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  • 14” hats, 16” & 18” crashes, 20” ride
  • B20 bronze
  • Dark & rich tones
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Zildjian K Custom Dark Cymbal Set Review

The Zildjian K Custom Dark cymbals all have very mellow tones to them. They have low-pitch sounds that blend within mixes of instruments. This makes them great for softer styles of music where the cymbals don’t need to sound aggressive.

They have a fairly short decay, adding to the smooth dark tone. You can lay into them with your drumsticks without worrying about volume being an issue.

You’ll commonly find these cymbals being used by jazz and worship drummers. However, the biggest place you’ll find them being used is in recording studios. They transfer incredibly well through microphones and they’re easy to mix with.

This particular cymbal set comes with the standard cymbal setup having two crashes, a pair of hi-hats, and a ride cymbal.

If you’re looking for rich cymbals that work extraordinarily well in most playing environments, the K Custom Darks are the go-to option in Zildjian’s cymbal lineup. They’re also some of the best Zildjian cymbals that you can get.

The cymbal set is comprised of the following cymbals:

  • 14” K Custom Dark Hi-Hats
  • 16” K Custom Dark Crash
  • 18” K Custom Dark Crash
  • 20” K Custom Dark Ride

Pros

  • Beautiful rich tones
  • Excellent for recording
  • Very versatile

Cons

  • Expensive

Zildjian A Custom Cymbal Set

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  • 14” hats, 16” & 18” crashes, 20” ride
  • B20 bronze
  • Bright & full-bodied tones
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Zildjian A Custom Cymbal Set Review

Zildjian A Custom cymbals are incredibly popular in the drumming world. They produce bright and shining tones that fit perfectly within rock and heavy music settings.

You would have seen these cymbals on most drum kits in the early 2000s when rock and punk were huge around the world. They’re still commonly used in many drummer’s setups today.

All the A Custom cymbals have high-pitched attacking tones. However, the sounds also have full-bodied warmth, making the cymbals sound much higher-quality than cheaper bright cymbals.

The crashes get out of the way quite quickly, making them great options to crash on during heavy choruses. The ride has a big presence and the hi-hats are solid. The bell of the ride is arguably the most impactful sound that the cymbal set has to offer.

This is the Zildjian cymbal set you should get if you need cymbals that are cutting and bright. Thankfully, it’s a bit more affordable than the previous one.

The cymbal set is comprised of the following cymbals:

  • 14” A Custom Hi-Hats
  • 16” A Custom Crash
  • 18” A Custom Crash
  • 20” A Custom Medium Ride

Pros

  • Easily cut through mixes
  • Bright sounds are great for rock and metal
  • Classic cymbal sounds that most people know

Cons

  • The 20” Medium ride rings a bit too much

Zildjian K Custom Special Dry Cymbal Set

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  • 14” hats, 16” & 18” crashes, 21” ride
  • B20 bronze
  • Dry & earthy tones
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Zildjian K Custom Special Dry Cymbal Set Review

The Zildjian K Custom Special Dry set is a highly unique option in Zildjian’s lineup of cymbals. These cymbals offer the dry and earthy tones that many modern drummers love at the moment.

The hi-hats have a raw tone with a short sustain. They’re fantastic to play open hi-hat patterns with as the sound gets out of the way very quickly. This allows you to heavily lay into them without getting an overwhelming sound.

The two crash cymbals are extra-thin, also having a quick decay with dry and earthy tones. Their attack is fast and they tend to blend within a mix instead of shooting through it.

The 21” ride cymbal is excellent. It’s highly reminiscent of vintage raw rides, giving you a sound that is throaty and raw. The bell sound is strong, although it keeps the dark tone from the rest of the cymbals.

This cymbal set is fairly versatile, working well in most settings. They shine in jazz and indie settings, but they also sound great for RnB, pop, rock, and metal.

The cymbal set is comprised of the following cymbals:

  • 14” K Custom Special Dry Hi-Hats
  • 16” K Custom Special Dry Crash
  • 18” K Custom Special Dry Crash
  • 21” K Custom Special Dry Ride

Pros

  • Modern dry sounds
  • Versatile
  • Unique visual appearance

Cons

  • Expensive

Zildjian K Constantinople 22” Medium Thin Low Ride

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  • Low to medium pitch
  • B20 bronze
  • Warm & lush tone
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Zildjian K Constantinople 22” Medium Thin Low Ride Review

If you want one of the highest-quality cymbals Zildjian has to offer, look no further than the 22” Zildjian K Constantinople Medium Thin ride.

It costs almost the same amount as a whole cymbal pack, but you won’t find many ride cymbals that sound better than this one.

It produces tones that are incredibly warm, dark, and smooth. Combine those with clear stick articulation, and you have the reason for why so many jazz drummers love this ride cymbal.

The wash is excellent as well, so you can crash on it to get a large tone that tends to hang over all your other cymbals beautifully.

Even though it’s primarily used by jazz drummers, this ride typically works well in any setting you put it in.

Pros

  • Beautiful vintage sound and feel
  • Hand-lathed by experienced cymbal artisans
  • Extraordinary tone

Cons

  • Very expensive

Zildjian A 14” New Beat Hi-Hats

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  • B20 bronze
  • Bright tone
  • Medium pitch
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Zildjian A 14” New Beat Hi-Hats Review

Zildjian’s 14” A New Beat hi-hats are some of the most recorded hi-hats in music history. These hats are so versatile that they work incredibly well in every style of music that exists.

They have a strong “chick” sound, and they open up very nicely when you loosen your foot on the pedal. The overall tone is bright and full-bodied, working well along with other bright cymbals. However, it somehow works excellently with dark and dry cymbals as well.

If you want one pair of hi-hats that complement absolutely any cymbal and any style of music, look no further than the New Beats.

Pros

  • Some of the most versatile hi-hats you can get
  • Fantastic reputation
  • High-quality sounds

Cons

  • Fairly expensive

Zildjian S Series Performer Cymbal Set

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  • 14” hats, 16” & 18” crashes, 20” ride
  • B12 bronze
  • Bright & shimmering tones
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Zildjian S Series Performer Cymbal Set Review

The S Series Performer Set is an affordable set of cymbals from Zildjian that you can get to upgrade from cheap entry-level cymbals. 

The cymbals don’t sound as refined and smooth as the A Customs but they offer bright tones that sound much better than cheaper cymbals.

All the cymbals in the set have shimmering sounds. They’re bright, and the tone stays consistent throughout each cymbal. They’re fairly good options for rock, punk, and metal.

These cymbals are the budget option. They sound fantastic for their price, but don’t expect to record Grammy-worthy albums with them!

The cymbal set is comprised of the following cymbals:

  • 14” S Mastersound Hi-Hats
  • 16” S Medium Thin Crash
  • 18” S Medium Thin Crash
  • 20” S Medium Ride

Pros

  • Very affordable
  • B12 bronze is a good upgrade from entry-level B8 cymbals
  • Consistent sounds throughout each cymbal

Cons

  • Not great for professional settings

Zildjian Cymbals Buyer’s Guide

Different Zildjian Lines

Zildjian’s two main pro-level lines of cymbals are the A and K Custom lines.

If you’re looking for high-quality cymbals, you should look to see what Zildjian has to offer within these lines. Most of what you’ll find here will fit perfectly within professional settings.

Zildjian’s cheaper lines are the S Series and the Planet Zs. The Planet Zs are for absolute beginners while the S Series cymbals cater more to experienced beginners.

Stylistic Choices

The cymbals you get should depend on what style of music you mainly play. The A and A Custom cymbals like the Zildjian A 14” New Beat Hi-Hats are bright, making them good options for heavy styles of music. You can’t go wrong with a set of A Customs if you play in a rock band.

The K and K Custom cymbals such as the Zildjian K Custom Special Dry Set and the Zildjian K Constantinople 22” Medium Thin Low Ride are a bit more warm and complex in tone, making them great for jazz and studio recording. They also work fairly well in some rock and metal settings. They just don’t cut through mixes as easily.

Final Thoughts

With the brand being so popular, it’s quite easy to find Zildjian cymbals that fit exactly with whatever context you play drums in. All of their product lines cover a wide range of dynamics and tones.

The top-quality lines may be fairly expensive, but they’ll last you a very long time if you take good care of them. Purchasing them would be a good investment for any drummer.

If you’re not sold on Zildjian yet, go watch some of the Zildjian Live videos on YouTube to see the vast scope of what cymbals you can get from the brand. There are also some top-quality artists that endorse them!

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