I've been around drums for quite awhile now. Longer than some, not as long as others. I would like to share, in my opinion, a common misconception about cymbals: They should all be the same brand.
Again, this is my opinion, so please take it's for what it's worth. When I was a lad, I was the typical rocker, breaking cymbals on occasion. Okay, a lot. I've tried a total of four brands over the years, which we will refer to by letter. Because I like variety, I currently own 17 cymbals that are 3 different brands, set up between two different kits. Mind you...none are cracked. The cracked ones are on the third kit at the band house.
Anyway, after years of different combinations (enter A top hat with C bottom) I have decided that brand loyalty is not the solution. I still, for example, play the aforementioned High Hat combination on my home practice kit. They sound awesome. They are the perfect hard rock, louder club, brighter recording hats. They were actually the hats of choice one round in the studio. Different brands.
The crashes on my gigging set are Brand A on the right and Brand B on the left. Same with the two splashes. In fact, one time the Brand B got cracked. (No more good cymbals at open jams, but that's another blog.) Rational thinking told me that I could replace the broken B with a Brand A, as that what the other crash is, and it would sound great. It did not. I exchanged Brand A for Brand B.
Pick a cymbal for your entourage based on how it sounds on your kit, with the rest of your cymbals.
West Music has an approval policy for this exact purpose. Tell your salesperson what type of sound you're looking for, and we'll get you set up. Brand is nowhere near as important as sound. Unless you're getting them for free.
For more information, please visit Percussion Source, West Music's destination for all things percussion.