It is often said that Necessity is the mother of Invention. So it was with Cympad.
Reto Hirschi is a Swiss-based professional drummer and teacher who noticed that the sound level of his cymbals was often too loud in performance and recording situations— and sometimes too loud in rehearsal and teaching situations, as well. Because of this, Reto (like other drummers) often either had to wear earplugs or found himself banished behind a Plexiglas wall at live concerts and in the studio, or both. Reto felt that these solutions were not satisfactory: Earplugs modified the sound of the drums and the Plexiglas wall had a sonic effect that disrupted his relationship with the audience. Reto was convinced there had to be a better way to “tame” his cymbals.
To meet this need, Reto had the idea of replacing the standard bottom cymbal felt with a larger one. This small change resulted in a noticeably less aggressive, less noisy, less washy sound without changing the general sound characteristics of the cymbal. After further experimenting, Reto took his idea to the next level by swapping the traditional felt washer for a washer made of an advanced, cellular foam. He then began trying different washer sizes to create additional sound control options. Calling them “Cympad Moderators”, Reto’s invention and the Cympad Company were born in 2005 with the introduction of 50, 60, 70, 80, 90 and 100mm Moderator models to the drumming world.
Cympad Moderators immediately received positive feedback from drummers and sound engineers. Some even considered the Moderators a revolution for drummers. Reto quickly began to build a market for his new products and establish an international network of dealers and distributors.
Reto thought that the cellular foam he was using for the Moderators might work in other drumset applications, too. He next began developing cellular foam washers that would replace conventional felt cymbal washers. The result of his efforts was a new breed of cymbal washers that provided better cymbal suspension, better isolation from stands and mounting hardware, better cymbal sound and a more comfortable, more natural feel. He called this group of cymbal sound enhancers “Cympad Optimizers” and offered them in a selection of models to fit all cymbal types and sizes.
“Cympad Chromatics”, cellular foam cymbal washers in a variety of bright, attractive colors, is the third and latest series of cellular foam cymbal washers from Cympad. It seemed that drummers enjoyed the ability to enhance the sound and customize the look of their drumkits as Chromatics quickly became a top selling drum accessory all around the world.
Today Cympad Moderators, Optimizers and Chromatics are available in more than 40 countries and used and endorsed by the world’s top drummers, including Aaron Spears, Stanley Randolph, Shannon Larkin, Stanton Moore, Stephen Perkins, Johnny Rabb, Rich Redmond, Walfredo Reyes Jr., Steve Smith, Thomas Lang and many more. Reto continues to teach and play the drums and his company continues to create innovations designed to meet the needs of modern drummers.
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