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Hands-On Review: Zildjian ZBT Series Cymbals

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Zildjian quality at a great value

By D.J. Adams

Zildjian ZBT Cymbals

Drumming isn't how I make a living. Admittedly, it's not even my #1 hobby. That would be classic cars. Surprisingly, playing drums and restoring vintage vehicles have a bit in common. They both require good equipment. Now, I generally have two "classes" of hand tools. I have the more expensive, heat-forged, guaranteed-forever tools that are advertised to have a better grip and feel. Then there are my "loaning" tools. Those are the more economical, yet high-quality tools in my collection. Of course, the loaners are not as prominently placed in my rollaway toolbox or on the workshop pegboards. After all, I do have an image to uphold among other "car guys."

But, consider the curious phenomenon that occurs in my garage. More often, I find myself reaching for the loaning tools. It seems that so many of them have a just-right feel and get the job done proficiently. They just kinda' "fit" well too. Thus, I'm loaning them out less frequently and they're showing a tendency to be around a while. What's my point here? It's that a set of Zildjian ZBT cymbals might be just the right fit for you. They sound great, are budget-friendly, are built to last, and have looks that certainly won't embarrass you around fellow "drum guys."

Real Zildjians

The ZBT Series cymbals are finely crafted from the same sheet bronze alloys as more costly cymbals in other Zildjian series. Zildjian Bronze Technology (ZBT) is the manufacturing technique developed by Zildjian's Sound Lab. It creates an instrument with tremendous projection, high volume, and fast response. ZBT Series cymbals have their own distinctive voice. It's a good-sounding voice that is still distinctively Zildjian.

Serious sound for any set

Crisp, clean, well-defined tone is Zildjian's hallmark. The ZBT Series cymbals don't disappoint. They have sound grooves and circular hammer marks for shimmering sound and a nice "bite." The lathing seems very consistent, so you can expect uniform sonics. The ZBT cymbals are also mighty responsive. Your stick strokes are immediately answered with a bright ring and a rapid decay. For rock, pop, jazz, swing, country, polka, hip-hop, even metal, these affordable cymbals are a good fit for your favorite kit.

All this and good looks too

Having a good-looking set of cymbals is important. That old saying that drummers are to be felt and not heard is neither here nor there with me. But, being seen is an altogether different matter. Though often buried somewhere near the back of the stage, watching a good drummer work live can be exciting for any music fan. And what really catches the eye are those shimmering bronze disks rocking in the air. The Zildjian ZBTs shine here too. The highly polished surface produces a brilliant glimmer that speaks of quality. Of course, for your drummer friends watching you work, there is that unmistakable Turkish-type Zildjian logo.

They won't crash your budget

Manufacturing innovation has allowed Zildjian to create a topnotch cymbal series at a very nice price. Now Musician's Friend serves them up and delivers them to your door for a low price that's hard to believe.

Tags: Cymbals Acoustic Drums Zildjian

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