Top 10 Best Hi Hats for 2020

best high hats

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Drummers who are seeking the best hi-hats for 2020 will find that the market is saturated with countless options. Many different types and sizes are available for hi-hats from various brands and finding good quality options that are right for your needs can be difficult. However, with the list below, it should be easier for you to locate the hi-hats that will be right for your drumming style, so you can get the sound that you want.

Also, we will provide some information on the most important and commonly asked questions regarding hi-hat cymbals for your drum kit. This information, along with the list and the review roundup below, should help you better understand what you need and what will be right for your drumming setup. Start exploring the various options to find a solution that matches your musical sound.

Best High Hats

Zildjian A Series Zildjian A Series New Beat Hi-Hat Cymbals
  • Material: Bronze Alloy
  • Sound: Bright and Expressive
Zildjian Hi-Hat Zildjian LV8013HP-S Hi-Hat Cymbals
  • Material: Proprietary Alloy
  • Sound: Low Volume
Zildjian 13 Zildjian Mastersound Hi-Hat Cymbals
  • Material: B12 Alloy
  • Sound: Brilliant and Shimmery
Zildjian 13 Zildjian K/Z Special Hi-Hat Cymbals
  • Material: Proprietary Alloy
  • Sound: Dry Musical “Stick” and Bright “Chick”
Sabian 41402X Sabian B8X Hi-Hat Cymbals
  • Material: Pure Bronze
  • Sound: Tight and Bright
Meinl 13” Hihat Meinl 13” Hihat (Hi Hat) Cymbal Pair – HCS Traditional Finish Brass for Drum Set, Made In Germany, 2-YEAR WARRANTY (HCS13H)
  • Material: Brass Alloy
  • Sound: Crisp and Bright Sound
Zildjian Hi-Hat Zildjian LV8014HP-S Hi-Hat Cymbals
  • Material: Proprietary Alloy
  • Sound: Low Volume
Zildjian Planet Z HiHat Zildjian Planet Z Hi-Hat Cymbal
  • Material: Nickel-Silver Alloy
  • Sound: Bright and Focused
Stagg BM-HR10 10-Inch Stagg BM-HR10
  • Material: B20 alloy
  • Sound: Strong Accent on Low-End Harmonics for a Dark Sound
Meinl 14” Hihat Meinl Hi-Hat Cymbal HCS 14
  • Material: Brass Alloy
  • Sound: Crisp and Bright Sound

Zildjian A Series New Beat Hi-Hat Cymbals

Zildjian A Series

Zildjian is a popular name brand amongst drummers, and you will see it crop up quite a bit on this list of the best hi-hats. These particular hi-hats were originally designed by Louie Bellson and they have become the bestselling hi-hat from the company. The cymbals are known for producing an expressive tone that’s bright along with a “stick” and “chick” sound.

The cymbals are beautiful and feature symmetric hammering and a traditional finish. They look just as great as they sound. These are available in 14” and are made from a bronze alloy that includes 80% copper and 20% tin with some traces of silver.

The cymbals are high-quality, and it is easy to see why they are so popular among drummers. They can be used for a wide range of different types of music, and they could be a good solution for your drumming needs. However, they are not as budget-friendly as some of the other options.


  • Designed by drummer Louie Bellson for drummers
  • Traditional finish
  • Pure and expressive sound quality


  • The cost could be out of reach for some potential buyers

Zildjian LV8013HP-S Hi-Hat Cymbals

Zildjian Hi-Hat

You will notice right away that these cymbals are quite different from the norm. This is because these Zildjian hi-hat cymbals are low volume. They are between 70% and 80% quieter than regular cymbals, which means they can be played longer without ear fatigue. The low volume also ensures they can be played in apartments or any other locations where you need to keep the sound down.

These are crafted using proprietary techniques to ensure they are quiet, while still providing you with the feel of hitting a traditional cymbal. The hi-hat cymbals have a matte finish to them, which provides a nice look.

There are options for different sizes of these low volume hi-hat cymbals. These particular cymbals are 13”. Later on the list, we will discuss the 14” option. These could be a nice solution for those who want to find a way to practice while keeping the noise to a minimum.


  • Perfect for playing in dorm rooms, homes, and other locations where you need to keep quiet
  • Feels like a real cymbal
  • Long-lasting


  • Only good for practice; you won’t be playing gigs with these symbols

Zildjian Mastersound Hi-Hat Cymbals

Zildjian 13

The Mastersound hi-hat from Zildjian is aimed at semi-professional and professional musicians who are looking for a quality solution that can work across a range of musical styles. You can choose from three different sizes with the hi-hat cymbals – 10”, 13”, or 14”. The 13” option provides great control, while the 14” option can offer a wider range of frequencies.

The B12 alloy is made from 88% copper and 12% tin, which works well for producing balanced frequencies in the low, mid, and high ranges. The hi-hat is masterfully crafted to create the perfect weight, feel, and sound. These are considered medium/heavy hi-hats, and they feature a brilliant finish.

These hi-hats could work well for a range of different types of musicians. While they are often used by those who are actively working as a musician in some capacity, they could also be a solid option for those who are just playing at home or in a garage band.


  • Thinner top and heavier bottom
  • Hit a wide range of frequencies
  • Classic sound works with many styles of music


  • The 10” option does not sound as good as many would like

Zildjian K/Z Special Hi-Hat Cymbals

Zildjian 13

Zildjian is on the list again with their K/Z Special. They are available in 13” and 14” options and they feature a medium top (K) and a heavy bottom (Z) that helps to produce a “chick” sound while playing. They can also create a dry musical “stick” sound.

You will be able to produce a nice and controlled sound with the hi-hat, particularly with the 13” option. Drummers like that it is clear and provides an excellent wash of sound. The hi-hat cymbals are surprisingly loud whether playing them with sticks or just with the foot. While this is helpful for many types of music, they might not be appropriate for all musical styles and locations.

The craftsmanship is excellent, which is what drummers have come to expect from Zildjian. With proper care, the hi-hat can last for a long time and become a fixture in your drum kit.


  • Nice and loud, which can work well for many live venues
  • Great “stick” and “chick” sound
  • Durable and long-lasting


  • Many feel that the 14” option is not as good as the 13”, which can offer better control

Sabian B8X Hi-Hat Cymbals

Sabian 41402X

Sabian is another well-known name in the field, and the B8X is a standout option that many drummers will want to consider. The sound is tight and bright, and it can penetrate and project the sound beautifully. These are popular for the stage, but they could be used for recording, as well.

Drummers will appreciate the construction of the hi-hat cymbals. They are precision-formed, and they have been hammered and lathed. This provides them with tight sounds from a tonal perspective. These cymbals are made using pure bronze, so you will find that the sound is different from some of the other cymbals on the market.

These cymbals can work well for those who are playing aggressive and punchy music, but they may not always work well for all styles of music. They are available in a 14” diameter, although the company does make a 13” option, as well.

These are a durable hi-hat option that you may want to consider for your drum kit, particularly those who are just beginning drumming.


  • Great sound and full accents
  • Pure bronze
  • A good option for beginners


  • Not as versatile as many would hope

Meinl Hi-Hat Cymbal HCS 13”

Meinl 13” Hihat

Made from a brass alloy, the HCS hi-hat cymbal from Meinl provides a range of features that drummers will appreciate. These cymbals are made with beginners in mind. They are durable, and they can work well for any type of music that you might want to play.

Drummers will be happy to know that the cymbals are capable of producing a full range of sound. The bottom cymbal is heavier, while the cymbal on top of the hi-hat is lighter. This helps to produce not only a great sound but also a great feel when you are playing.

The hi-hat can work very well as your main hi-hat. However, some musicians choose to use it as an auxiliary hi-hat to provide some added effects and style to your playing. The cymbals are made by a popular German manufacturer, and they are known for being high-quality. This is a 13” option, and later, we will discuss their 14” hi-hat.


  • A good option for students and beginners
  • Play a wide range of styles of music
  • Durable


  • The sustain is not as long as many would like

Zildjian LV8014HP-S Hi-Hat Cymbals

Zildjian Hi-Hat

This offering from Zildjian is identical to the 13” option discussed above except for the size. The cymbal is larger and will work better for some drummers and their setups. If you have been searching for a way that you can practice without disturbing everyone else in your apartment complex or dorm, this could be a good option.

With these low-volume hi-hat cymbals, you will be able to reduce the volume by between 70% and 80%. They are not entirely quiet, which should be noted. There will still be some sound when you play the hi-hat. However, it will be low enough that you will not want to use these for a live performance on stage.

Although this will not become your main hi-hat, it works well for beginners, as well as more experienced musicians who want to have a quieter practice option. They are made using a proprietary allow and have an interesting design and finish to make them look great.


  • Perfect choice for those in spaces where being quiet is important
  • Durable
  • Sophisticated appearance


  • Only useful for practicing, which limits their versatility

Zildjian Planet Z Hi-Hat Cymbal

Zildjian Planet Z HiHat

Once again, Zildjian is on the list, showing the company’s popularity with drummers. Like the other options from the company, this makes the list because it provides a wealth of benefits to the drummer. The sound is bright and focused thanks to the brass alloy and construction, which makes it a good option for developing the ear.

In addition to the bright sound, you will find that the sustain on this hi-hat is relatively short. This may or may not work well for the type of music you are playing, and it’s something to consider before making a purchase.

The hammering and lathing pattern provides not only an excellent sound but also a nice look. The hi-hat cymbals here are 13”. They are designed for beginners, but they could be a good option for others who want to get into Zildjian. They are made from a nickel-silver alloy.


  • A good option for beginners
  • A bright sound
  • Great aesthetics


  • May not be versatile enough for advanced drummers

Stagg BM-HR10

Stagg BM-HR10 10-Inch

The Stagg BM-HR10 hi-hat cymbals are just 10”, which may limit their use as your main hi-hat. However, some musicians love the sound that it provides and will use them as their main rather than as an auxiliary hi-hat. The choice is yours.

The quality of the hi-hat is one of the draws for many drummers. Made from B20 alloy, these cymbals are durable and provide you with a dry and mid-scooped response with a strong, deep sound thanks to the low-end harmonics.

This darker sound is appreciated by many drummers, particularly those who are working in the field of rock and metal. However, because the hi-hat is somewhat specialized in this regard, it will not be an ideal solution for all drummers.

Another feature of the hi-hat cymbals that is sure to be appreciated is the appearance. They have a unique appearance when you compare them to the other cymbals for your hi-hat that are available. Even the look of the hi-hat cymbals is darker in tone than other options.


  • Unique sound works well for rock and metal
  • A great option for an auxiliary hi-hat
  • Impressive appearance


  • The hi-hat is not very versatile

Meinl Hi-Hat Cymbal HCS 14

Meinl 14” Hihat

Meinl is on the list again, this time with the 14” version of the HCS. You will find that this is nearly identical to the 13” option, except for the size. The hi-hat is aimed toward those who are just starting as a drummer. They are durable and can stand up to the beating that they will take as a part of your drum kit.

Many drum instructors outfit their student kits with this hi-hat because it can stand up to abuse while sounding good and providing an excellent learning platform. The hi-hat provides great musical tone, and it can be used to play a range of different styles of music.

Like other options, the bottom cymbal is heavier than the top symbol. This provides a good feel and sound. The German-made hi-hat cymbals could be a good option to add to your drum kit.


  • Good choice for students and beginners
  • Durable enough for any drummer
  • Versatile for playing different styles of music


  • Some drummers were not happy with the sound of the hi-hat and thought it sounded tinny or like a toy, but these complaints are rare

Hi-Hat FAQ

Below, you will find some of the frequently asked questions regarding hi-hat symbols, along with their answers.

What Size Hi-Hat Cymbals Should You Buy?

The size of the cymbals will affect the sound and tone. Smaller high-hats that range from 10” to 14” will often have a brighter sound. Larger will often have a darker sound. However, with the 10” Stagg hi-hat above, you can see that size doesn’t always matter. Take the time to learn more about the sound that the hi-hat cymbals you are considering make before you buy.

What Are Some of the Best Brands?

There are many quality brands on the market today, but we’ve collected options from only the best. When you are choosing your hi-hats, try to stick to Meinl, Sabian, Zildjian, and Stagg.

What Are Auxiliary Hi-Hats

We mentioned auxiliary hi-hats in some of the reviews above. This simply means having an extra set of hi-hats. They will often be a different size or have a different tone and sound, so the drummer can be more versatile behind the kit. They are not necessary when you are beginning, but they may be an option to consider as you build your skills.

Which Hi-Hat Cymbals Are the Best?

There are many great hi-hats on our list, and it was difficult to determine which one would be considered the best hi-hat overall. However, we’ve decided that the Zildjian A Series New Beat Hi-Hat Cymbals will take the crown this time. They have a great sound, as well as a classic appearance. While the cost is higher than many of the other options you will find, the durability and the brand recognition help to make them a worthwhile option.

Of course, you will have your own needs and preferences when you are searching for the best hi-hats. Take the time to explore the list above and find the solution that is best for you.

Aiden Jones
Aiden Jones
Music is in my blood, I decided to create this Roaming Sound to talk about the all things music. Welcome! Learn more about me here
Aiden Jones
Aiden Jones
Music is in my blood, I decided to create this Roaming Sound to talk about the all things music. Welcome! Learn more about me here