Meinl Hi-hats has left its mark in the hearts of drummers around the world. Meinl’s dedication to its crafting quality raised the company’s name among the best cymbal manufacturers. Even I was astonished when I had the chance to play a Meinl hi hat years ago.
Therefore, I collected 9 of the best Meinl Hi-hats, guiding you towards the best hi-hat tone possible. In addition, I made a nifty buyer’s guide to help you find the suitable Meinl Hi-hat Series for you!
You may like to read: What is a Hi Hat?— A Straightforward Hi Hat Guide for Beginners
What are the Different Meinl Hi-Hat Series?— A Buyer’s Guide
As stated, Meinl is one of the best brands when it comes to hi-hats and cymbals. However, all Meinl cymbals aren’t the same as they produce various sounds meant for different playing styles. Thus, let’s dive into the different Meinl Hi-hats series to find the suitable one for your style.
The Byzance series is Meinl’s most expensive cymbal line. The series features B20 Bronze materials. Meinl divided the Byzance into 8 different categories, catering to various drumming needs of all musicians.
8 Subtypes of the Meinl Byzance Series
- Foundry Reserve- hand-made cymbals that produce clear tones with low undertones.
- Dual- trashy, earthy, and low tone followed by a quick and bright sound.
- Extra Dry- low and trashy tone with a short sustain.
- Dark- unlathed cymbals that produce a clear, dark, and loud volume.
- Vintage- artificially-aged cymbals that produce a vintage cymbal sound.
- Traditional- extremely versatile-sounding hand-forged cymbals.
- Jazz- smooth, subtle, and expressive cymbals ideal for light playing.
- Brilliant- smooth and low-frequency response cymbals with added brilliance.
Artist Concept Series
The Meinl Artist Concept Series is another high-end cymbal line that showcases the specifications of Meinl Artists. Thus, allowing drummers to achieve the tone of their favorite Meinl Artist.
The Artist Concept Series produces excellent and unique-sounding hi-hats such as the Anika Niles Deep Hats. Furthermore, the Meinl Artist Concept Series utilizes stacked cymbals which allow users to project otherworldly drum tones.
Classics Custom Series
The Meinl Classics Custom Series features B10 Bronze materials. As a result, lowering the product’s price point while preserving the sound-quality Meinl cymbals provide. Thus, I would recommend this series for drummers looking for budget-friendly hi-hats.
The three subtypes of the Meinl Classics Custom Series are the following:
- Dark- provides a dark and warm undertone with an aggressive and loud sound.
- Brilliant– features a loud and bright sound that cuts well in any mix.
- Extreme Metal– perfect for metalheads, this series cuts excellently against high-gain guitars and rumbling basses.
Pure Alloy Series
The Meinl Pure Alloy series incorporates B12 bronze materials, providing drummers with a strong cymbal within a mid-range price point. In addition, the Pure Alloy series feature computerized hammering, ensuring consistent warm tone and high pitch among the series. Therefore, I recommend the Pure Alloy series for drummers who want an incredible hi-hat tone without spending much.
On the other hand, Meinl also designed the Pure Alloy Custom. The Custom line also features B12 Bronze Materials. However, the Pure Alloy Custom sounds deeper and heavier in comparison with the Pure Alloy Series.
Generation X Series
Meinl designed the Generation X Series with both beginners and professionals in mind. The Generation X Series features a sharp and cutting sound perfect for both live playing and practice. Therefore, making the Generation X series an excellent upgrade from a brass hi-hat. In my opinion, it is also a cheap alternative to higher-end hi-hats.
The Meinl HCS Series features B8 Bronze and brass materials, resulting in a decent hi-hat within an affordable price point. Therefore, I recommend the HCS Series for beginners looking towards buying their first cymbal set or hi-hat.
The Two Subtypes of the HCS Series are the following:
- HCS Bronze– features a B8 Bronze material, resulting in a bright, clean, and articulated sound with ample sustain.
- HCS Series- features brass materials that produce a warm sound and low-mid pitch; however, it’s still too bright for my liking.
9 Incredible Meinl Hi-hats for Beginners and Professionals
Meinl 13” Hihat (Hi Hat) Cymbal Pair (HCS13H)
Series: HCS Series Meinl Hi-hats
The Meinl 13” HCS Hi-hat is an excellent starting hi-hat for beginners who are building their first kit. Despite the HCS affordable price point, this Meinl cymbal series still packs a punch! I recommend this to beginners and students who want a bright and clear sound without busting the bank.
Furthermore, the HCS Hi-hat utilizes brass alloy materials, providing users with an expressive and durable performance. In addition, the utilization of MS63 brass alloy allows the hi-hat to withstand all types of hits from a drumstick. Meinl specifically designed the HCS hi-hat to produce a crisp and clean bright tone perfect for all genres.
Moreover, Meinl crafted the HCS series in Germany with 100% renewable energy. Thus, making the manufacturing process environmental-friendly. Therefore, if you’re looking for sustainable and durable hi-hats on a budget, you can’t go wrong with the HCS Series.
- MS63 Brass Alloy Material
- 13” Hi-hat size
- Medium top and bottom cymbal
- Traditional finish
- Medium bell size
- Produces a crisp, clean, and bright tone perfect for all genres.
- Ideal for beginners, instructors, and students looking for an affordable but great practice hi-hat.
- Durable construction that can withstand all types of hits from a drumstick.
- Budget-friendly price point.
- I think the HCS Series lacks in terms of articulation and tone against higher-end Meinl Hi-hats.
Meinl Cymbals GX-12/14TH Generation-X
Series: Generation X Series Meinl Hi-hats
The Meinl Generation X is perfect for drummers who want to sound different without spending much. With this in mind, the GX-12/14th brings the Benny Greb “Trash Hat” to the hands of drummers on a budget.
Firstly, the Meinl Generation-X Hi-hat features FX9 Alloy materials. Thus, producing a dry and immediate response with ample rattle and sizzle. In addition, perforated holes on both the top and bottom cymbal minimize airlock for a fuller and clearer sound.
Secondly, the Meinl GX-12/14th incorporates a 12” top and 14” bottom hat cymbal, creating an innovative hi-hat sound. Lastly, this hi-hat utilizes high-tech computerized manufacturing and pressure point technology for a better and more consistent tone.
- FX9 Alloy Materials
- Pressure Point Technology
- 12” top and 14” bottom hat cymbals
- Perforated holes on both top and bottom cymbals
- High-tech computerized manufacturing
- Produces a unique tone thanks to the combination of 12” top and 14” bottom cymbals.
- The perforated construction prevents airlock; consequently, providing the cymbal with a clear tone.
- Fully-adjustable sustain by tweaking the wing nut and felt of a cymbal stand.
- Provides drummers with a dry and instantaneous response.
- The Generation-X hi-hat doesn’t produce a standard “chick” sound.
Meinl 15″ Hihat (Hi Hat) Cymbal Pair (CC15DAH)
Series: Classics Custom Dark Series Meinl Hi-hats
The Meinl 15” Classics Custom Dark is the perfect complement for high-gain guitars of heavy metal bands. In addition, the Classics Custom Dark utilizes B10 bronze alloy materials, allowing the hi-hat to cut within a dense mix. The B10 bronze alloy construction also allows the hi-hat to produce an intense attack with a darker tone.
Furthermore, the Meinl Classics Custom Dark incorporates a highly specialized finishing process. Thus, leaving the cymbal with a durable finish that won’t wear over time. Finally, this hi-hat produces an explosive sound which is perfect under loud settings.
- B10 Bronze Material
- Dark Finish
- Lathe-formed profile
- Extra deep hammering
- 15” Hi-hat size
- Produces an aggressive and dark but warm tone.
- Perfect for metal and rock.
- Offers a loud projection ideal for live settings.
- Easily cuts through a dense mix.
- I wouldn’t recommend the Classics Custom Dark series in a practice kit.
Meinl Cymbals B16EDMTH Byzance Extra Dry
Series: Byzance Extra Dry Series Meinl Hi-hats
If you want one of the best cymbals in the market today, then consider getting the Byzance Extra Dry Hi-hat. The Byzance Extra Dry incorporates a B20 Bronze alloy material, producing a dry and silky feel. Moreover, the Byzance Extra Dry offers a dry and earthy character with an in-your-face articulation perfect for all drumming settings.
Meinl constructed the Byzance Extra Dry with a thin weight. Consequently, providing the hi-hat with unparalleled versatility for all genres. Furthermore, Meinl utilized an extensive hand-hammering process, providing a refined but raw performance in every hit. Lastly, the Byzance Extra Dry emphasizes articulation, nuances, and projection, making them perfect for all playing styles.
- B20 Bronze alloy material
- 16” hi-hat size
- Thin weight
- Dry sound
- Medium top and bottom cymbals
- Extremely versatile, making it perfect for all musical genres.
- Allows drummers to easily accentuate and project every subtlety of their playing.
- Offers premium hi-hat feel and performance.
- Provides a crisp definition and a trashy tone.
- Offered within an expensive price point.
Meinl 14″ Medium Hihat (Hi Hat) Cymbal Pair (CC14MH-B)
Series: Classics Custom Brilliant Meinl Hi-hats
Ideal for drummers who want a cutting bright tone, the Meinl 14” Classics Custom Brilliant won’t disappoint! Featuring a brilliant finish and fully lathed surface, this hi-hat provides a clean and classic tone. In addition, the cymbals utilize the B10 Bronze alloy, providing drummers with uniform dynamics for live playing.
On the other hand, the Classics Custom Brilliant doesn’t lag in terms of aesthetics. Moreover, Meinl designed the Classics Custom Brilliant with an eye-catching reflective finish. Thus, providing the hi-hat with an irresistible shine through and through.
- B10 Bronze Alloy
- Brilliant reflective finish
- Fully lathed surfaces
- 14” hi-hat size
- Precision point hammering
- Produces a clear and bright tone that will surely cut in mixes.
- Offers uniform dynamics, making them excellent for hard-hitting drummers.
- The hi-hat’s precision point hammering provides a clean stick definition.
- Comparatively more affordable than the Classics Custom Dark.
- I would recommend the Classics Custom Brilliant for beginners to intermediate drummers; however, professionals might find this hi-hat lacking.
Meinl 14″ Hihat (Hi Hat) Cymbal Pair – (CC14EMH-B)
Series: Classics Custom Extreme Metal Meinl Hi-hats
The Meinl designed the Classics Custom Extreme Metal with extra deep hammering. Consequently, darkening the hi-hat’s overall tone— effectively countering the bright sound profile of its heavyweight profile. In addition, the Classics Custom Extreme Metal boasts a brilliant shiny finish, making them eye-catching during performances.
Furthermore, the Meinl Classics Custom Extreme Metal utilizes B10 bronze alloy materials. Thus, providing drummers with a uniform sound ideal for live performances. Lastly, this alloy material allows the Classics Custom Extreme Metal to cut through dense mixes.
- B10 Bronze alloy material
- Extra deep hammering
- 14” hi-hat size
- Extra heavyweight
- Non-lathed surface
- Produces a sharp and piercing tone, making it an ideal accompaniment with high-gain guitars.
- Suitable for heavy metal and rock music.
- Explosive and cutting sound perfect for any mix.
- Provides users with an incredible projection.
- In terms of aesthetics, metal drummers are better off with the darker finish of the Meinl Classics Custom Dark.
Meinl Cymbals B14TH Byzance 14-Inch
Series: Byzance Traditional Series Meinl Hi-hats
Most drummers— including me— opt for a smooth hi-hat for a butter-smooth playing experience. The Meinl Byzance Traditional Series dominate in this arena.
Firstly, the Byzance Traditional features B20 Bronze alloy, delivering a high-midrange tone for a great-sounding hi-hat. Moreover, this hi-hat delivers a sharp and cutting chick supplemented by an extremely manageable open sound.
Secondly, the Byzance Traditional features a 14” hi-hat size, making it easy and comfortable to use when drumming. Lastly, the hi-hat’s medium top and bottom cymbals produce a medium volume and sustain, making them ideal for most genres.
- B20 Bronze alloy material
- Hand-lathed surface
- Medium top and bottom cymbal
- Mid-high tone
- Traditional finish
- Extremely versatile hats ideal for jazz to hard rock.
- Produces a high-mid tone, allowing the hi-hat to cut easily in any mix.
- Warm and rich sound.
- Comparatively cheaper than the Byzance Extra Dry.
- Even though the Byzance Traditional hi-hats are versatile, I don’t recommend them for beginners.
Meinl 15″ Medium HiHat (Hi Hat) Cymbal Pair (PA15MH)
Series: Pure Alloy Traditional Meinl Hi-hats
The Meinl Pure Alloy Traditional is perfect for drummers who seek the best dynamic range possible. From a silent “chck” to a full-bodied open hi-hat tone, the Meinl Pure Alloy Traditional has you covered!
Furthermore, the Meinl Pure Alloy Traditional utilizes B12 Bronze alloy with fully-lathed surfaces, providing the hi-hat with outstanding expressiveness. As a result, making the Meinl Pure Alloy Traditional perfect for any genre possible.
Moreover, the Pure Alloy Traditional features a reactive touch, allowing sticks to bounce on the hi-hat for a comfortable feel. Therefore, if you are looking for an all-around hi-hat, then the Pure Alloy Traditional is worth a shot.
- B12 Bronze Material
- Traditional finish
- 15” hi-hat size
- Medium top and bottom cymbals
- Reactive touch
- Ideal for session drummers who plays multiple genres.
- Boasts a reactive touch that allows users to highlight every aspect of their playing.
- Extremely versatile hi-hat pair.
- Provides a smooth, piercing, and full tone.
- The Pure Alloy Traditional cannot beat the Byzance series in terms of dryness.
Meinl Cymbals – Benny Greb Crasher Hi-Hat Cymbal
Series: Artist Concept Model Meinl Hi-hats
The Benny Greb Artist Concept Model brings drummers a tasteful and dry chick necessary for crispy chops. Utilizing 8” Byzance Crasher Hi-hats, the Benny Greb Signature features B20 bronze alloy materials for a more premium sound. Furthermore, the Crasher Hi-hat produces sound drummers can incorporate in syncopations and grooves for a tighter chop.
The Benny Greb Crasher Hi-Hat comes with an auxiliary hi-hat arm. Thus, allowing users to reposition their hi-hats with ample displacement.
- B20 and B8 Bronze Alloy
- 8” Byzance Crasher Hats
- Auxillary hi-hat arm
- Thin construction
- High-mid pitch
- Comes with a free auxiliary hi-hat arm.
- Features a stack of 2 B20 and 2 B8 Bronze alloy cymbals, creating a dry and fast “chick”.
- Accurately imitates the sound of a shaker, making it perfect for syncopated grooves.
- Produces a high-mid pitch that is perfect for any genre.
- I think this works excellently as a secondary hi-hat, but not as a primary.
Frequently Asked Questions about Meinl Hi-hats
Are Meinl cymbals any good?
Similar to the Zildjian hi-hat, Meinl is one of the world’s best hi-hat manufacturers. The brand produces excellent cymbal lines from the Byzance to the HCS Series, catering to both beginners and professionals. Moreover, Meinl offers outstanding specifications on both their entry-level and professional-line of cymbals. Thus, making Meinl an excellent choice for any budget.
Which hi-hat is best?
The best Meinl Hi-hats are the following:
- HCS 13” Traditional Finish Hi-hat
- Generation-X 12” and 14” Auxiliary Trash Hi-hat
- 15” Classics Custom Dark Hi-hat
- 16” Byzance Extra Dry Medium Thin Hi-hat
- 14” Classics Custom Brilliant Hi-hat
- Classics Custom Extreme Metal 14” Hi-hat
- 14” Byzance Traditional Thin Hi-hat
- 15” Pure Alloy Traditional Hi-hat
- Artist Concept Model 8” Benny Greb Crasher Hi-hat
Where are Meinl cymbals made?
All cymbals crafted by Meinl Percussion were made in Gutenstetten, Germany. Moreover, Meinl’s factory utilizes a combination of solar, hydro, and wind energy in its manufacturing process. Thus, ensuring buyers that Meinl makes their cymbal with 100% renewable energy.
Are Meinl Hi hats good?
Meinl utilizes only Brass, B8, B10, B12, and B20 materials, ensuring excellent tone within any price point. In addition, the company incorporates various computerized and manual cymbal manufacturing processes. As a result, providing users with a consistent cymbal tone that will cut under any musical setting.
Are Meinl HCS good?
The HCS series is Meinl’s attempt to produce the quality their company provides within an entry-level price point. In addition, Meinl utilizes B8 and Brass materials on the HCS series. Thus, providing drummers with a clear and bright tone.
Therefore, these features put the HCS Series way above other entry-level off-brand hi-hats. As a result, making the HCS Series one of the best entry-level cymbal sets in the market today.