Sabian Quiet Tone cymbals are an excellent option for drummer who need to lower the volume of the acoustic cymbals on their kit. This could be for practice purposes or even lower volume gigs. These cymbals will take the decibel level down without making a major sacrifice in tone and feel.
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Feel & Playability
As far as low volume cymbals go, drummer who use these find that they have a little better feel and playability compared to some of the cymbals that more aggressively lower the volume.
They have a good sticking feel, move like a typical acoustic cymbal moves when hit, and generally feel like a normal cymbal. The tone also allows for dynamic playability and responds well various types of sticking and accents.
As far as volume-lowering cymbals are concerned, these are some of the louder options. They are still quiet enough to be used at home for practice cymbals, but they don’t take the volume down as much as the Zildjian L80 cymbals, for example.
As a good comparison, they are louder than the L80’s and a little more quiet than the Agean Low Noise cymbals.
The volume of the Sabian Quiet Tone cymbals might still be a little too loud for those that need the most volume-lowering such as small apartment drummers. But that is debatable depending on your play style and how hard you play.
Some drummers find the sound of the bell to be too loud, but that is more of a subjective reaction depending on how much volume-lowering they were looking for.
If you need low-volume cymbals for live situations, these could be a good option due to how they focus more on retaining a more natural tone over completely sucking out all the volume.
Drummers who use these cymbals really like the tone that they provide. For a stainless steel cymbal with a bunch of holes punched through them, they actually sound pretty good!
They have a bright tone, a pleasant sticking sound, and a nicer wash and sustain than more quiet low-volume cymbals.
The tone of the bell on the ride is also excellent compared to other low volume cymbals and is something that stands out to drummers who try multiple types of low volume cymbals. In fact, if you really like a strong bell sound, these are probably going to be your best option outside of spending money on something like Ageans.
The overall quality of these cymbals is excellent. They look clean and shiny right out of the box. The stainless steel alloy used for these cymbals give off a visual feeling of quality which matches their build.
They display the type of build quality that you would expect from any other mid-range Sabian cymbal, so that’s a good thing. Sabian isn’t really cutting corners here.
The overall durability is another strength of these cymbals. The stainless steel alloy used in construction is strong and stands up to hard playing very nicely. Obviously, you can’t beat on these as much as a normal cymbal, but they will hold up well to those that have a little harder playing style.
Drummers who have used both these and the Zildjian L80’s, for example, tend to get the feeling that the Sabian’s are a little more durable over time.
For playing live with low-volume cymbals, these can be a great option. This is mostly due to the extra brightness and wash that they provide over some more aggressive volume lowering cymbals, and the stronger bell sound also adds to this.
We feel that these get a lot closer to the sound expected from a normal cymbal, while at the same time making a small sacrifice on volume reduction to get there.
These can also be a good option for low-volume cymbals for practicing with a band. They still sound good and dynamic and are more quiet, but aren’t super quiet and can still sit well in a mix with other instruments.
Cymbal Types & Cymbal Packs
Sabian currently offers the Quiet Tone cymbals in the following types and sizes:
- 13 and 14 Inch Hi-Hats
- 16 and 18 Inch Crash
- 18 Inch Crash Ride
- 20 Inch Ride
You may have noticed that they don’t offer a splash or china in the Quiet Tone lineup, which could be a negative for some drummers.
They currently package these cymbals into the following sets:
- 14 Inch Hi-Hat, 16 and 18 Inch Crash, 20 Inch Ride
- 13 Inch Hi-Hat, 14 Inch Crash, 18 Inch Crash Ride
- 14 Inch Hi-Hat, 16 Inch Crash, 20 Inch Ride
- 13 Inch Hi-Hats, 18 Inch Crash Ride
- Durable due to stainless steel construction
- Nice sticking sound and wash/sustain
- Strong bell sound
- Shiny steel look is different but looks good
- Might be a little too loud for those who need the quietest cymbals
- While the bell is strong, some drummers find it to be too loud
- No china or splash options in the cymbal lineup
The Sabian Quiet tone cymbals overall are good quality low-volume cymbals. They look sharp and are very durable in construction. Drummer like their bright sound and louder wash/sustain. The bell sound on the rides is very strong.
If you are looking for a volume-lowering cymbal but want to retain more of the brightness of the sound of a traditional cymbal and don’t necessarily need them to be super quiet – these will be a good option for you.
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