Got a kit? You gotta have cymbals! Cymbals are an essential part of the drum kit, but can also an expensive part! There's no doubt in the value of high cost cymbals as the overall sound of your playing will be far greater. But what if your budget doesn't stretch to top end cast cymbals? Fear not, there is a good range of low cost cymbals available.


Q. So what makes for a 'cheap' cymbal?

A. Well ultimately it comes down to the materials used, manufacturing technique and the manufacturer themselves. Check back to our page on 'Buying Cymbals' for details on the different type of cymbals, but this section will concentrate on 'Sheet Metal Cymbals' and 'Brass cymbals'

Q. What are 'Sheet Metal Cymbals' and 'Brass Cymbals'?

A. In essence the cost to manufacture these types of cymbals are lower so if you are on a budget these cymbals are for you!

  • Sheet Metal Cymbals usually are made from B8 bronze (92% copper, 8% tin) which is a cheaper material available in sheet form. B8 cymbals are cheaper to manufacture producing a less sophisticated musical instrument. B8 cymbals are primarily aimed at the mid-price range.

  • Brass Cymbals (62% copper, 38% zinc) are the cheapest cymbals to manufacture and are duller sounding with a poorer dynamic range compared to B8 and B20 cymbals. Entry level drum kits often come with very basic brass cymbals. Low end price range.

There are exceptions to the rule, Sabian's excellent XS20 range are made from B20 bronze and are not too expensive.

Q. So where should I start looking?

A. Well, first off what cymbals do you need and what is your budget? Cymbals to get you up and running with a drum kit would be a crash cymbal, a ride cymbal and a pair of hi hats. These will give you all the basic sounds you need.

These three cymbals are often put together into affordable 'sets'. Check out our listings for 'Cymbal Sets' and you'll get the idea. Buying a cymbal set is undoubtedly the best way to get you up and running with a cymbal set up and make a saving at the same time.

Buying the cymbals individually would come at a greater cost. As far as your budget is concerned the more you spend the better sounding the cymbals will be. That said, however, a basic set of cymbals on a kit will sound surprisingly better than the cymbals that come as standard with entry level kits such as the CB kit, and without question a lot better than no cymbals at all!!!