Planet Paiste


DRUM ONE is proud to offer the largest selection of Paiste cymbals in the UK. We stock every range from 101 right up to Signature and Modern Essentials and we never have less than 100 Paiste cymbals on show.

A company steeped in history with a reputation for outstanding and consistent quality, innovation and performance.



Russia 1902 – 1916

Michail Toomas Paiste, a composer and musician, whose father had come from Estonia to serve in the Tsarist Guard, founds a publishing business and music store in St. Petersburg. The operation, which also includes modest instrument manufacturing and repair facilities, flourishes for many years until the upheavals of the Russian Revolution force its closing.

Germany 1945-

Towards the end of the war, Michail M. and his family escaped Poland as refugees, bringing him to Northern Germany where, for the third time, he begins to produce cymbals and gongs. The instruments’ superior reputation help revive business relationships and ensure development of a robust export business throughout the Fifties. Paiste still manufacture 101, PST3 and PST 5 cymbals in Germany to this day.

Switzerland 1957-

Michael M. establishes a manufacture in Switzerland, also bringing a third generation, sons Robert and Toomas, into what becomes the companies base for future development. A new era begins as Robert and Toomas make Paiste Switzerland the hub of its international business activities. Since 2003, the company is headed by Toomas’ son, Erik

Estonia 1917 - 1939

Michail Toomas returns to his native country, and re-opens his business in the city of Tallinn. It is here that he begins to design and manufacture cymbals for concert and marching bands together with his son, Michail M. Paiste, who quickly becomes the driving force and eventually takes over the business. Seeking to meet the rapidly evolving demands of “modern music” and the emerging drum set, the son begins to develop his own special concept for Turkish style cymbals, which he prefers over the Chinese style as a starting point. It is during this time that he also develops the first gongs. The resulting instruments receive awards and international recognition as they begin to be exported to Europe, the USA and overseas.

Poland 1940-1944

The events of World War II force Michail M. to leave Estonia for Poland, where he re-establishes the family business. The company struggles with a wartime shortage of raw materials and difficulty in maintaining international relations, but manages to survive.

USA 1981-

The company gains a firm foothold in the world’s largest musical instrument market with the establishment of Paiste America in the U.S.A.


The principle of the Paiste family business is to continually create new sound with cymbals, gongs, and bronze percussionVinstruments according to the creative needs of drummers and percussionists.

The foundation of this search for musical sound is the successful combination of the musician’s creative imagination of musicians and the inventive spirit of the musical instrument maker. The spark that continually invigorates this search is music itself, in all its beauty, complexity, and seemingly never-ending capacity for new ways of expression. The relationship between Paiste as sound makers, and drummers and percussionists as musicians, is the very intimate manifestation of this deep principle. This is Paiste’s true purpose.

The secrets in creating sounds are life-long experience, a deep knowledge about sound and sounding alloys, painstaking craftsmanship, and intensive experimentation. Paiste never get accidental results, they meticulously research and thoroughly execute their creations. Paiste guarantee consistency in sound qualities and sound color in every cymbal, percussive sound and gong they offer. Through these virtues Paiste can offer a full range of unique and specific sounds, which respond to the musician’s personal wishes, providing drummers and percussionists with ever-new sound dimensions. Paiste give you new possibilities to expand your sound spectrum and to creatively develop your individual musical expression. This helps you realize your musical dreams.


The Paiste cymbal program always reflects the current state of music. Music is incredibly diverse and changes constantly. Today’s music mixes and matches styles; it borrows freely from historical periods; it is being enriched by ethnic and traditional genres; it continues to integrate worldwide music styles. Players no longer limit themselves within a certain style.

Experimentation, integration and revolution are the norm. The art of percussion has evolved to a point where technical and musical ability has reached unprecedented levels. Drummers and percussionists speak many musical languages and actively perform in several genres.

The Paiste program is designed to keep up these trends and their ability to do this has grown exponentially over the decades. As a result, the Paiste development programme covers more musical needs than ever before as they continually create new sounds. Paiste create cymbals with more potential for variation and versatile application, they design more sound and function into individual models. They research and develop methods to bring more satisfying sound to lower priced ranges. In short – Paiste work hard to make their cymbals do more to satisfy drummers and percussionists.



There is much conflicting and nebulous information circulating about how cymbals are made. Cymbal companies have different ways of doing things, and naturally they all maintain that their way is the best, while their competitors’ ways are not so good. Since they all have great marketing departments that excel at semantics, everyone usually comes out smelling like a rose. We will limit our statement in this regard to the fact that we do things our way because it works for us and we get superior results. Besides, explaining our methods in too much detail would reveal our secrets, and we would rather not substitute such revelations with misleading and trivial simplifications. Still, our methods are interesting and our story worth telling. Our manufacturing philosophy is simple: we know that a human being has the intuition and ability to create superior musical instruments. To mimic this ability with a machine would require a highly sophisticated robotic device controlled by advanced artificial intelligence.

This is a very interesting concept but unfortunately still within the realm of science fiction. So we do things the tried and true way. We make cymbals by hand. And since the results are magnificent we see no reason to change. In our professional series, we craft cymbals by hand exclusively. We will use mechanical devices sparingly and only as aids to hand manufacture, but never at the expense of sound and quality. Such devices help remove strenuous labor from our artisans, and allow them to concentrate their talents and energy on creating instruments of the highest sound quality and consistency. In the creation of our mid-range cymbals we will introduce automation. Our value class cymbals are entirely machine made, because this helps us lower the cost of such cymbals. The true art of cymbal making is to select the right methods to achieve the desired goal, whether it is ultimate professional sound quality or whether we strive to achieve the best price/value relationship.



The master cymbals created by Sound Development form the basis for production and are kept as references in the different production departments. Each department’s goal is to contribute to producing faithful copies of these reference cymbals. This is the principle that ensures the ultimate in consistency and quality.


The firing department prepares the round disks for later stages of production. A visual inspection ensures uniformity and sorts out flawed disks. The center of the cymbal is then heated to soften the metal, so that a bell can be pressed into it. A hole is then punched through the center of the bell. Some cymbals are sent through a high temperature oven in order to anneal them.


The hammering department gives the cymbal its shape. To conserve human energy, we utilize a pneumatic hammer. This tool aids the craftsman in the initial shaping of the cymbal. With his feet the craftsman controls the velocity and force, and with his hand the spacing and pattern of the hammering. The process is comparable to mastering four-way independence in drumming. Extensive and careful hand hammering using only hammer and anvil accomplishes the fine-tuning of the shape. An important aspect of this process is the truing, ensuring uniformity in shape throughout the cymbal.


Quality control procedures are implemented frequently throughout the production process. This involves checking the production cymbals repeatedly against the reference cymbals to ensure that the precise parameters are executed to perfection. The final – and arguably most important – step in production is to hand test each and every finished cymbal against the master cymbals produced by Sound Development. If a cymbal does not conform to our exacting standards, it is destroyed. Only instruments of perfect quality and consistent sound character are allowed to leave our workshop.


The finishing touches are then applied by smoothing the cymbal’s edges, silk-screening brand marks and model designations on the instrument and then coating it with a special protective solution to prevent oxidisation.


The lathing department reduces the thickness of the cymbal to the correct parameters which usually also involves a thinning of the surface towards the edge of the cymbal. Our tolerances are minute, and measuring by micrometer is necessary to achieve them.


Drum Sets