Sabian 18" AAX El Sabor Crash

Crash Cymbal

  • Size: 18"
  • AAX series
  • El Sabor crash
  • Natural finish
  • Distinguished by its clear, solid bell
  • A thin, flanged, raised edge allows use as a crash as well as a ride cymbal
  • Can also be used as a hand-played crash for percussion
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  • Hard-Softstick

Further information

Hand Hammered Cymbal Yes
Finish Regular / Traditional
Alloy B20 Bronze

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4.9 / 5.0
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7 written ratings Read all reviews
Total
sound
quality

WHAT AN UNREAL CYMBAL!

Christo C, 10.11.2014
I was searching for a professional hand crash for a long time before coming across this guy! And boy am I glad I did :)

Just as an introduction I'm going to give you an idea of my setup:
-Djembe in basket stand
-Stomp box
-Foot Cabasa
-Latin Block
-Cowbell
-Lots of different brushes, beaters, sticks, shakers, everything.
And now the Sabian AAX El Sabor 18" Crash!

My set up was incredibly low-end orientated before purchasing this cymbal and as the percussionist in a two piece group I have to fill as much frequency range as I possibly can. I used to use an old Sabian AAX 16" crash in rehearsals but found it far too cumbersome for hand techniques. For those wondering whether a cymbal specifically cut for hand is worth it; it is! With a regular stick crash you feel as if you have two settings: way too loud and way too quiet. The El Sabor is incredibly intuitive; with your bare fingers you can achieve the response of beaters or of a hard stick crash. The sustain is beautifully cutting, crisp and focused but not too samey as to feel as you are over using it if it is your only cymbal in a set up. This cymbal really comes alive however when used as a crash/ride in jazz style playing with some nice splayed brushes. The soaring bell hits from the unlathed centre against the enormous wash of the very outer shoulder make this easily the most versatile cymbal I've ever used!
In a kit setting is also a wonderful addition, colourful and charactered almost like an enormous splash cymbal, it really brings life to long accents. I have even tried the cymbal as the top hi-hat with a Zildjian Scimitar underneath and the results are utterly exciting! If you want a big messy, crashy open hi-hat sound with an enormous anvil chink give it a go!

Bottom line is I'm so impressed I'm seriously considering getting the 16" as well...
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Total
sound
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Hard not to love

Richard261, 24.06.2013
It's hard to find a great crash cymbal you can play by hand. If they are designed for a stick, they are usually too thick to offer an immediate response to the lighter touch. Equally, thin cymbals tend to come as splashes with a fast attack but equally fast decay.
However, the El Sabor has been designed for hand use - and it works! When you hit it with fingers or thumb it crashes immediately and lasts a long time with a generous tone. Tapping with fingernails gives a worthwhile sound, again because the cymbal is so responsive. Again, due to the size, you can roll up on it very gradually for a very slow crash.
In the centre, (see photo) the metal is thicker to provide a good bell. This is really intended to be used with a stick or brush handle.
My other crash is a 16" Bosphorus Gold, which though it is smaller, gives a deeper sound. I think this shows the surprising versatility of the Sabian - it is big but bright, yet with a very usable ride & bell section.
I'm not sure I'd want to use it too much with sticks - perhaps that all depends on the expected lifespan! Brushes work great though.
It's an expensive piece of kit, but it's in a class of its own.
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