Home Music & Audio Best Cymbals [Buying Guide] in 2020

Best Cymbals [Buying Guide] in 2020

by Jonathan Logtenberg
Sabian 20" SBr Ride Cymbal (SBR2012)
Meinl 14” Crash Cymbal – HCS Traditional Finish Brass for Drum Set, Made In Germany, 2-YEAR WARRANTY (HCS14C)
Meinl Cymbals Ultimate Cymbal Set Box Pack with FREE 16” Trash Crash – Traditional Brass Finish – Made In Germany, 2 YEAR WARRANTY (HCS-SCS1)
Sabian Ride Cymbal SBR2012
Meinl 14” Crash Cymbal, 14”
Meinl Cymbals Pack
Sabian 20" SBr Ride Cymbal (SBR2012)
Sabian Ride Cymbal SBR2012
Meinl 14” Crash Cymbal – HCS Traditional Finish Brass for Drum Set, Made In Germany, 2-YEAR WARRANTY (HCS14C)
Meinl 14” Crash Cymbal, 14”
Meinl Cymbals Ultimate Cymbal Set Box Pack with FREE 16” Trash Crash – Traditional Brass Finish – Made In Germany, 2 YEAR WARRANTY (HCS-SCS1)
Meinl Cymbals Pack

My first coming across the cymbals was during high school in a music class. The memory is still fresh like it was yesterday. My music instructor would instruct some of us to take turns in playing the cymbal while others played other musical instruments. It was my first time seeing the musical instrument. At first, I wondered what it is all about but as it was hit with a drumstick, the sound and tone it produced were harmonious and unique, unlike any musical instrument I have seen.

Everyone was excited as the sound produced by the cymbal blended seamlessly with music percussion that rented the room. Ever since my first exhilarating encounter with the cymbals, I have grown more fascinated to learn more about this instrument. The cymbal has come to take up a very special spot in my heart. I have learned how to play it and even recommend to music enthusiasts that I come across.

The cymbal is a musical and percussion instrument. It is typically round and disc-like in shape. They are usually made of alloys that give them a unique note. Cymbals are mainly found in musical settings such as the orchestra, heavy metal bands, jazz bands, and many other music ensembles.

The word cymbal is derived from the Latin word cymbalum. The cymbal has a characteristic hole in the center that is used to mount the cymbal on a stand for hand playing. The size and the thickness of the material determine the nature and quality of sound it generates. This musical instrument is just like any other instrument that you can play for fun and get creative with music. The drumming of cymbals dates back to centuries ago. Today it has redesigned and modified to offer a better sound quality and music experience.

Do you intend to find the perfect cymbal but do not know how to go about it? There is no need to worry anymore for Surf n’ Buy is here for you. We care about your music journey and experience, which is why we created this guide. In this guide, we will review the best cymbals in the market to consider buying. We will provide you with the necessary information that will help you make an excellent choice and experience with this unique instrument.

Are you ready to find out the best cymbals in the market to start an exhilarating music journey? Here are the top cymbal products to consider today.

Top 4 Cymbals

1. Sabian Ride Cymbal SBR2012


The Sabian Ride Cymbal SBR2012 is a cymbal set that is designed with both amateurs and professionals in mind. It is one of the most sought-after cymbals in the market today. Made by Sabian, one of the most reputable companies in the manufacturing of high-quality and acoustic cymbals, you can be sure of getting good value of your money. This company is one that has innovation and excellence as their rule of action and are highly dedicated to crafting high-end musical instruments that will be enjoyed playing by professionals and amateurs.

Even professionals love the Sabian Ride Cymbal SBR2012. For an amateur, this is the cymbal to get your hands on, as it will encourage you to go on with learning. The Sabian cymbal comes with a beautiful hammered and lathed finish. It is hand hammered signifying that this cymbal is a top of the line musical tool. In case you are having an amateur hour with what a hand-hammered cymbal is, this feature is synonymous with well-made and high-end cymbals.

Featuring a brass design, this musical instrument is well suited for live genre music as it produces a light, crisp and focused sound. The sound quality is rich such that it can form an alloy seamlessly with other equipment in a musical setting. Another feature to be happy about this cymbal is its durability. This is a sturdy and highly durable set of cymbals that will last you throughout your musical journey. It can withstand any hammering or beating to ensure that you enjoy the true value of your money for a very long time.

Buyers should be happy buying this cymbal as it comes with a one-year warranty protected by SABIAN when bought from a reputable dealer. With all these qualities about the Sabian Ride Cymbal SBR2012, there is no reason not to see why it is not the ride cymbal you are searching for.


  • Well constructed to be usable by both beginners and amateurs.
  • Has a hand hammered and lath finish.
  • Made of brass, this Sabrina ride cymbal is highly durable to stand with you in any musical setting.
  • Considering its brass design, its tone quality is clear, light and rich.
  • If you are a drummer on a shoestring budget, this is an ideal cymbal for you.
  • It is strong that it is not malleable no matter how hard or long you hit it with drumsticks.


  • It is not ideal for an orchestra music setting.
  • The weight is heavy which may not be ideal for producing a full and deep sound.
  • It does not come with free online tutorials.
  • Despite being affordable, it may not be afforded by everybody.


The Sabian Ride Cymbal SBR2012 is a fantastic cymbal that drummers should keep an eye peeled out for. The aesthetics are nice and the function is superb. If you are a beginner or on a tight budget, this cymbal is definitely, the one you should go for a wonderful cymbal playing experience.

2. Meinl 14” Crash Cymbal, 14”

The Meinl 14″ Crash Cymbal, 14″ is one of the best crash cymbals in the market for your money. When it comes to making a budget and beginner-friendly crash cymbals, the HCS is going to gain our recognition. Made in Germany, this cymbal is one that you can bet it will guarantee you all the values you need in a cymbal. Meinl is a company is totally dedicated to manufacturing cymbals that is played by beginners and professionals. Both professionals and amateurs can see their high-quality cymbals in how great they are demands for.

This cymbal is acoustic and beautiful to play. It delivers a warm and sustainable tone during play. Its idyllic sound makes it the ideal solution and accent to add to a musical set up. The Meinl 14” Crash Cymbal, 14” is designed for students and beginners. People that are trying to learn how the cymbal is played and works can do that with this Meinl production.

There is no place that you cannot place the Meinl 14″ Crash Cymbal, 14″. It can be placed anywhere on your drum set up to create any style of play. Made from a brass alloy material, you can be sure that this cymbal can stand the test of drumstick beating and time as well. Any drummer that wants a durable and strong cymbal should be looking for a decent cymbal. Even professionals demand for it for this reason. For its resilient nature, music teachers recommend it for learning how to play cymbal. Another fascinating feature about the Meinl 14″ Crash Cymbal, 14″ is that it comes with a two-year Meinl warranty to cover for defaults and damages. All of these described make this cymbal is a lovely musical instrument to hold.


  • Made from brass alloy, the Meinl 14” Crash Cymbal, 14” is strong enough to last for you throughout your music journey.
  • It comes with an official two years warranty from Meinl.
  • Its durability makes it well suited for students and beginners.
  • It is budget-friendly for those that have a tight budget.
  • The bright response and warm sustain makes it ideal for adding a quick crash cymbal accent to your drum kit.
  • It is designed to be well placed anywhere on your drum kit.
  • Sticks, mallets and any kind of brush can be used to drum on the Meinl 14” Crash Cymbal, 14”.
  • It has a classic design.
  • The Meinl 14” Crash Cymbal, 14” offers a less shimmering sound compared to other expensive HSC series.


  • It is not suitable for every kind of music setting.
  • The design does not offer a potent sound output.


If you are looking for a cymbal that is cheap and offers excellent sounds, then the Meinl 14” Crash Cymbal, 14” should be your go-to cymbal. Coming from the stables of Meinl, you can be sure of getting the best value for your money in a beginner-friendly cymbal.

3. Meinl Cymbals Pack

The Meinl ultimate cymbal pack is a fantastic choice among cymbal players. It is another fine cymbal that is making a cut on our list from the stables of Meinl. Just as we have discussed previously, Meinl is one of the reputable and distinguished companies well known for manufacturing high-end musical instruments that are affordable. With the Meinl ultimate cymbal pack, it does not take rocket science to see why one of the best. This instrument is worth spending your money on depending on the kind of music you are playing.

The Meinl ultimate cymbal pack features an all-inclusive set up that includes a 16” crash, 14” crash, 20” ride, 14” Hi-hat pair, 14” China, 8” Bell, and a free 16” Trash Can. You should not be surprised that this musical instrument in the HCS line is durable. This is because it is made from brass alloy. The nature of its material has given it a highly responsive sound with a unique quality that is unmatched. The Meinl ultimate cymbal pack contains all the cymbals that are perfect for beginners and students. The great thing about this cymbal is that it allows learners to explore and enhance their creativity for the cymbal playing.

The different setups of the Meinl ultimate cymbal pack make it highly versatile and suitable for many drum kits. It can be used for rock, jazz and many other genres of music.  Its versatility is one of the many features that have made it highly sought after. A cymbal pack of this quality at such a cheap cost has left us at Surf n’ Buy astounded. Beginners or experts that are looking forward to getting their hands on a cymbal that produces high-quality sound will want to get their hands on this one. It is one of the best in the market.


  • The sound production is excellent such that it can be used in recording music.
  • It comes with an official Meinl 2-year warranty for production damages and defaults.
  • It is easy to play and this has made it beginner-friendly. This is one of the reasons it is used in music classes.
  • It features a highly responsive sound.
  • It is highly durable as it is made from brass allow.
  • The Meinl ultimate cymbal pack enables beginners to easily explore other sounds of this cymbal.


  • The sound is dull and may not be found appealing by many.
  • Notwithstanding that it comes at an affordable price, it may not be afforded by many.
  • It does not come with a free online tutorial.


If you are looking for a cymbal set pack that is cheap and can be used in different music settings, we recommend the Meinl ultimate cymbal pack to you. It is high quality and durable musical instrument that you should consider having today. A fantastic purchase it is and it is definitely going to be fun playing.

4. Zildjian ZBT Starter Cymbal Set

The name Zildjian is a household name that has been associated with quality and excellence. It is one of the oldest and most respected names in the industry. They manufacture some of the high-end and cheap cymbals in the market. They also produce expensive cymbals that are widely played. One of the cheapest and high-quality cymbals in their stables is the Zildjian ZBT Starter Cymbal Set. This is a cymbal set that has been acknowledged by both professionals and newcomers to be one of the best in the market. Even music teachers testify to the brilliance of Zildjian in this product.

For a beginner that is on a tight budget, this is the cymbal set that you need. When you open this set you find a 13″ hi-hat, 18″ crash ride, and an additional 14″ crash. Even from the sound of the name, it is easy to figure out that this is an instrument that anybody that is starting out on the cymbal-playing journey should have.

From the sound of the name, you might think that the Zildjian ZBT Starter Cymbal Set is expensive but it comes at a cheap price. It is also a product that you can trust to give you great value for your money. Using the Zildjian Bronze Technology the body is made of B8 bronze, which is a durable material. Because bronze sounds better than brass, the sound production of this cymbal is idyllic and topnotch. It complements the fact that it easy to play by beginners, giving them an extra benefit of enjoying the musical instrument.

We at Surf n’ Buy thinks that the Zildjian ZBT Starter Cymbal Set is an excellent choice in a cymbal. We recommend it to you to have fun and build a fantastic playing experience.


  • Given that the body is made of B8 bronze, the sound quality is richer than that of brass.
  • It is affordable.
  • The Zildjian ZBT Starter Cymbal Set gives you great value for your money.
  • All standard cymbals are included in the package.
  • It is made by Zildjian, a popular and well respected musical instrument manufacturing company.
  • It is easy to play and this makes it beginner-friendly.
  • The Zildjian ZBT Starter Cymbal Set is easy to clean and maintain.
  • One of the best in the market.


  • The bronze material is not cast by Zildjian and is not as durable as brass.
  • Bronze sheets mechanically punched out of cymbals.


The Zildjian ZBT Starter Cymbal Set from our research is one of the best cymbals that you can get today in the market. Made by one of the finest companies in the industry, it is safe to say that the Zildjian ZBT Starter Cymbal Set is one musical instrument that is not going to disappoint its owner. It is easy to play and comprises of all standard cymbals to offer you unique playing experience.

Types of Cymbals

Students and beginners that have not played the cymbal before may be wondering what the types of cymbals and the differences are. Just like many other musical instruments, cymbals come in various makeup. Even as an expert, there will come a time when you will want to change your cymbal kit for a new one but you don’t know which cymbal type to choose because you are less exposed to them. Here, we will provide you with a guide to the main types of cymbals that will enable you to make a better decision when shopping for one.

Crash Cymbals

This is the most common type of cymbals that people have come across. When you ask a beginner to describe the cymbal to you it is this cymbal type that comes to their mind. Having a characteristic loud and explosive sound, crash cymbals are used to provide accent and accentuate drum patterns. They produce short and bright notes. Crash cymbals usually come in the size of 14″ to 18″. It is also a beginner-friendly cymbal given its simple construction.

Ride Cymbals

This type of cymbal is called ride cymbals because it produces and sustains a rhythmic patterned sound rather than the explosive and loud sound of the crash cymbals. It is typically placed at the right-hand side of a drum set right above the floor tom. Ride cymbals are larger than crash cymbals, averaging between 20″ and 26″ in size. There are various thickness levels of this cymbal type. The thinner version gives out light and brighter sound while the thicker variant produces a louder, darker and bell-like ping sound.


You must have come across a pair of cymbals resting on a stand. Such cymbal layout is known as the Hi-hats. They are used to play steady patterns of music and often provide an accent. Hi-hats are played with a pedal used to open and close them. Light hi-hat cymbals produce lighter and crispier sounds while the heavy cymbals produce a darker sound. In the modern drum kit, hi-hat cymbals can be paired with the bass drum to enrich the sound of music.

China Cymbals

China cymbals are easily distinguished by their cylindrical bell and upturned edge. They have a crash-like and explosive tone similar to crash cymbals. Its design can be traced back to the Chinese gong, which gave it its name. Sizes of china cymbals vary between 8″ and 27″.

Splash Cymbals

This cymbal type is usually used to provide accent to drumming sets just like crash cymbals. It has the smallest size of the accent symbols. Splash cymbals generally come in the size between 6″ and 13″. They produce short and sharp sound. These are the most common types of cymbals that you will find in the market. They have unique sound production and different designs. These cymbal types also come in various sizes that give them their unique tones. You can make your purchase depending on your needs in a cymbal.

Cymbals Specifications

Cymbals come with different specifications that give them their unique and distinct sounds. The choice of cymbals is so vast that drummers often get confused over which one to choose. Below, we have provided you with useful information that will enable you to know the cymbals better and help you make a suitable choice.


The material from which the cymbal is made from influences the quality of sound produced. The benchmark of the cymbal alloy is the B20. This is made up of 80% copper and 20% zinc. It is the strongest and most durable of all the cymbal alloys. The sound quality is the clearest and of the highest quality. Another alloy trailing the B20 is the B8. It constitutes 90% copper and 10% zinc. It is durable but not like the B20. Brass is the lowest of the alloys. Because of its cheapness and lightness, it is usually recommended for beginners. They are usually used by professionals for sound effects.

Size of the Diameter

The size of the diameter of a cymbal also dictates the sound quality. 16″ cymbals produce powerful sounds like the sound generated is less full. If you prefer to play soft sound you should go for thin cymbals. Thick cymbals are preferred for their deep and full sound. Your choice of a cymbal depends on the style of music you want to play.

In case you do not know, the size of the bell also impacts on the sound quality of the cymbal. The cymbal bell adds harmonics and ensures that the note of each sound produced is sustained for as long as possible. For a cymbal with powerful and richer in harmonics, drummers should consider going for a cymbal with a large bell. This is cannot be achieved with a cymbal with a small bell.

Individual Cymbal vs. Cymbal Set

There are majorly two factors that determine if you have to buy an individual cymbal or a cymbal set. One of them is your budget and the other is your preference in sound quality. If you have a tight budget, the cymbal set will be beneficial to you. If you are already an expert in playing the cymbals and know the sounds, the cymbal set may not be ideal for you. This is because one of the cymbals in the set may not match your taste. Selling it and replacing it with a cymbal that meets your preference may be ideal but this can take time and be stressful.

What You Need to Know About Cymbal Stands

Every drummer requires hardware to help mount this cymbal. This is where cymbal stands come in. Cymbal stands are made of different designs that provide different mounting needs. We will tell you what you need to know about cymbal stands.

Straight Stands

This cymbal stand is most applicable in a complex cymbal setup. It is the sturdiest and simplest of the different cymbal stand types. It comes in light to heavyweight options and is most compatible with Ride cymbals. The straight cymbal stand is also used for mounted tambourines.

Boom Stands

This cymbal stand model is used for splash, effect, and crash cymbals. They offer the most positioning flexibility. Boom stands that collapse inside the upper section of the stand offers the most flexibility. They offer strong support for cymbal mounting.


Clamps are usually used in today’s drums setups. They are used to add instruments to spots where it is impossible to use a cymbal stand. Models range from one-to-one to one-to-three clamping options. The choice of the clamp depends on how complex the instrument addition is.


For drummers that want to customize their drum setup, the stackers will come in handy. Just as the name suggests, it is used in stacking cymbals on an already existing stand. There is no limit to the creativity the stacker avail to users. It is one of the most useful cymbal accessories.


This is a contraption that offers drums and cymbals, clamps and rails for mounting. It is one of the most useful cymbal accessories for drummers. There are different racks in the market today. Make proper research before you go for one.


There are accessories that will help you manage and support cymbals better to get the best use out of them. Most of them come with cymbal sets and you can buy others separately. Here is a list of some of the important accessories you can buy to support your cymbals:

Meinl Percussion 18” Bag

This is a heavy-duty nylon and cozy bag specially designed for keeping an 18″ frame drum safe.

Gibraltar 4709 Boom Cymbal Stand

This Gibraltar boom cymbal stand has a sturdy construction that forms a strong mounting platform for cymbals.

Gibraltar 4709 Boom Cymbal Stand
Hinged height adjustments; Nylon inserts for no metal to metal contact;  New "G" style pedal board design

Gibraltar SC-CMBAC Cymbal Attachment Clamp

Minimize cluttering and save setup space in your drum setup using this cymbal attachment clamp to mount to any existing tom stand or cymbal.

Gibraltar SC-CMBAC Medium Cymbal Boom Attachment Clamp
Gibraltar SC-CMBAC Medium Cymbal Boom Attachment Clamp

Cymbal Replacement Accessories, 18 Pieces

Made of quality fiber-optic felt, these accessories help in securing your cymbals setup better.

Cymbomute Pro360 18/19” Cymbal-Silencer-Dampener/dp/B0746KHFCT/

This accessory is used to reduce the volume of the cymbals during practice and protect your hearing.

Cymbomute Pro360º 18/19" Cymbal Mute/Silencer/Dampener
Keep the feel of playing your REAL cymbals; Low Volume Cymbals with no extra gear.; An innovation trusted by 1000’s of drummers worldwide.

Music Nomad MN112 Drum and Cymbal Care System

This particular accessory is a four-pack kit to take care of the entire drum set.

Music Nomad MN112 Premium Drum and Cymbal Care System
The ultimate professional-grade four-pack kit to care for your entire drum set; Premium Drum Detailer and Cymbal Cleaner each come in 8 oz. bottles


Cymbals are wonderful music instruments to accentuate any drum setup and percussions. They are fun and easy to play making one’s journey into the music sphere are a memorable one. They can be used in many types of music settings including orchestra, band, rock, jazz and many more.

Cymbals come in different types and specifications. They are so many that it can become overwhelming to choose one especially if you are a beginner. This is why we made this guide for you. The Sabian Ride Cymbal SBR2012 is a cymbal set that is designed with both amateurs and professionals in mind. The Meinl 14″ Crash Cymbal, 14″ is one of the best crash cymbals that deliver high-quality performance. The Meinl ultimate cymbal pack is a fantastic choice of cymbals that is worth spending money on.

At Surf n’ Buy, we strongly believe that every drummer deserves to have the best cymbals in their possession. This is why we have put together this guide to make its shopping process easy and effective for you. This guide features key information you should consider when you are looking for a cymbal. Having read this guide, we hope that you will get the cymbal that you are looking for.

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