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View Full Version : So I'm back from Istanbul...


DxRocker
05-11-2005, 05:35 PM
Man, was that a nice vacation....

I'll come right to the point.
Istanbul Agop was amazing. Friendly people, awesome cymbals and a drumset to jam, what would you want more? :)

Here are a few pics of the factory:

Outside view:

http://users.telenet.be/Drums/outside.JPG

The hammer dudes...

http://users.telenet.be/Drums/workers.JPG

The finisher dudes... :thumb:

http://users.telenet.be/Drums/workers2.JPG

A cymbal rack:

http://users.telenet.be/Drums/cymbals.JPG

Some more cymbals:

http://users.telenet.be/Drums/cymbals2.JPG

After the tour he just asked me what kind of music I played. After giving him some idea of what I look for in a cymbal, he started mounting different types while I sat behind the drumkit. I wanted a full set of cymbals, so I was testing hi-hats, rides, crashes, china's, splashes, bells, the whole works.

I finnaly ended up settling for a mix of alchemy's and traditionals. Here's the list:

Alchemy's:
20" sweet ride
14" sweet hi-hat
14" medium crash
2x 8" power splashes , 1 is high pitched, much higher then the other one for some reason
raw bell with sizzlers


Traditionals:

17" dark crash
16" medium crash
14" thin crash
10" Bell


So in all, that makes 10 sweet cymbals and a cymbal bag.
And I got all that for.... -ROFL- .... 890

If I would get that set here from our local shop, I'ld go way over 2500 euro.

Pics of the set will follow later. I just took them, but the batter of my cam went flat just when I wanted to put them in the pc. I still have to unpack and I'm really not going to go look for the recharger now...


And to finish it of, what would a trip to Istanbul be without a visit to the blue mosque, or the "Sultanahmet Camii" like the turkish call it. Boy, is that thing a piece of architecture!! :amaze:

http://users.telenet.be/Drums/mosque.JPG

http://users.telenet.be/Drums/inside.JPG

-TheGlassPrison-
05-11-2005, 05:36 PM
Whhaaatt!!
Crazy price!

CombatWombat3
05-11-2005, 05:37 PM
That's awesome man! It's so cool that you got to see all of that.

Sick-O
05-11-2005, 05:40 PM
Oh shit dude that friggin' rocks!!!

DxRocker
05-11-2005, 05:40 PM
Whoops, I forgot a 10" bell on the traditionals list :D
I've edited it :p

and yeah, it was amazing

darkevent89
05-11-2005, 05:41 PM
jeezuz

over_my_head
05-11-2005, 05:41 PM
Wow, that would of been a fun tour lol, remind me to go there sometime, and that is a crazy price, hope you had fun and good luck with your new cymbals

Double Bass Jim
05-11-2005, 05:41 PM
Dang man that is KILLER!!

Excellent choices too man!

Josiah
05-11-2005, 05:44 PM
Incredible man. Simply incredible.


Lets here some audio of those too!

-TheGlassPrison-
05-11-2005, 05:48 PM
Hahahaha I Hate You!
:p
Jk

Sick-O
05-11-2005, 06:12 PM
BTW how much is 2500 euro in U.S. currency?? (sorry i'm slightly challenged at these things :lol: )

DxRocker
05-11-2005, 06:15 PM
I think that lately one euro is equal to 1.2 US or something $, but I'm not sure.
The euro is slightly more expensive.

It's funny, in Turkish money (YT) it was around 1 billion :lol:

King
05-11-2005, 06:28 PM
dude, wow..... i want to go over east so bad, especially turkey

Flamacue
05-11-2005, 06:30 PM
Welcome back DxRocker! Pictures looks fantastic and I'm so glad everything went the way you planned. If it's ok with you, I'm going to link this thread to an elite cymbal forum called cymbalholics.com where the members there are real experts on genuine turkish cymbals. I know they'll enjoy this thread and the photos. And with my Istanbul Agop sig ride, I also know just how great Istanbuls are. Can't wait to see the pics of your set :thumb:

-Obscurity-
05-11-2005, 06:37 PM
So they give a discount if you buy them direct from the factory?

DxRocker
05-11-2005, 06:42 PM
So they give a discount if you buy them direct from the factory?

It's not really "from" the factory.. It's more like AT the factory :D

The price of those things get a HUGE boost when exported and sold in local drumshops. And off course, at the factory, you get factory prices. There's only one who has to make profit, and that's the factory. No online stores, no distirbuters, no drumshops mail stuff... Half of the cymbals I bought even didn't have logo's on them when I bought them, the came right from the cellar where they just finished making them.

They've put some logo's on the once I bought while I was drinking some tea with the bigg chief :thumb:

-Obscurity-
05-11-2005, 06:47 PM
It's not really "from" the factory.. It's more like AT the factory :D

The price of those things get a HUGE boost when exported and sold in local drumshops. And off course, at the factory, you get factory prices. There's only one who has to make profit, and that's the factory. No online stores, no distirbuters, no drumshops mail stuff... Half of the cymbals I bought even didn't have logo's on them when I bought them, the came right from the cellar where they just finished making them.

They've put some logo's on the once I bought while I was drinking some tea with the bigg chief :thumb:

Wow, that's amazing! Did you have connections or did you just walk in?

Fuzzy
05-11-2005, 06:49 PM
Lucky bastard :)

GooseFilms.net
05-11-2005, 07:09 PM
wow, looks like turkey is awsome
id definitely like to go there one day, that mosque looks awesome

and by the way, that mosque was originally a church when turkey was under the byzantine empire. however, when the ottoman empire conquered it in around the 15th or 16th century (not 100% on that one), constantinople was immediately made the capital of the ottoman empire (which spanned from the 13th century all the way to the 20th, by the way). glorifying constantinople, which was the roman capital in rome's later days (founded by the first christian empire Constantine somewhere around 223 AD), the ottoman sultans put a lot of cash into this city, making everything a very unique blend of european and middle eastern art and architecture

Futuro
05-11-2005, 07:26 PM
It's beautiful inside the blue mosque. must have had a great time man!

Thats only 1,139 dollars american you lucky bastard

thedisciple
05-11-2005, 07:29 PM
I kind of feel a little goofy about getting excited about the cymbal room at GC now. What an awesome experience and set of cymbals.

slickrick1688
05-11-2005, 07:36 PM
you got all those cymbals for under $1200 US i believe, what a great deal!

hihatx
05-11-2005, 07:39 PM
thats awsome dude and awsome choices. Id kill to be there and get to pic out al those new cymbals ( not literaly kill). what about some audio? and welcome back dude.

FFFRRRAAANNNKKK
05-11-2005, 07:41 PM
thats crazy man .. i wish i had that many cymbals for such a great price :(

Brendan
05-11-2005, 07:41 PM
whoah, amazing. definately looking forward to those pics

abandonthetruth
05-11-2005, 08:23 PM
**** man, have fun with those...

o_zo
05-11-2005, 08:32 PM
You posted pics of the factory but not your cymbals..... pics?:)

Seafroggys
05-11-2005, 08:32 PM
I love that pic of those dudes hammering away. A big empty room with all these grubby guys just hammering away at these cymbals :lol:

Did they speak English well? I'd assume they'd have to.

I'd love to go to Istanbul. NOw I want to **** Istanbul! W00t!

GooseFilms.net
05-11-2005, 08:38 PM
i doubt they speak english. why would they need to?

Seafroggys
05-11-2005, 08:45 PM
Umm, unless DxRcoker knows Turkish.

LostInMusic464
05-11-2005, 08:46 PM
That is a dream vacation for me man. Congratulations on your new gear. I can't imagine how excited I would be.

GooseFilms.net
05-11-2005, 08:47 PM
now cmon, why would they speak english? has england ever ruled over turkey? turkey is extremely uninfluenced by the english, hence, why the **** would they speak english? im sure a good number of people there speak persian among other languages, i know turkish isnt a language

ED: i googled it, languages are Kurdish, Arabic, Armenian, Greek. i just remembered that persian was the language used in ottoman courts

SonorKen
05-11-2005, 09:41 PM
This is a great thread! I loved the pics of the factory and the pics of the area! Thanks for sharing that! AND great cymbals! I can't wait to see the pics.

Jomofo
05-11-2005, 10:55 PM
Awesome pictures and amazing buys. Congratulations!

mabba
05-11-2005, 11:26 PM
Holy crap. How awesome is this picture? I mean. Wow.
http://users.telenet.be/Drums/workers.JPG
I will totally keep the Istanbul factory in mind if I ever have a chance to go there.

Wow. Sooooo lucky.

timehawk
05-11-2005, 11:38 PM
Thats insane! I would estimate the price of those with say Zildjian or Sabian equivalents is over 2000 CND at a local drum shop! Killer deal man. I would love to visit any cymbal making factory, thats one of my few goals in traveling. I really want to go to Japan to lol. I love seeig that though, all hand hammerd and lathed from a raw disk of metal, just a beautifull sight.

Stubbsy
05-12-2005, 01:27 AM
Man that is unreal. Seriously for all those cymbals from a shop down here in Australia would be like $6,000 but if I were to buy them like you about $3-4,000. I wanna go to ISTANBUL. UNREAL!!!nice pics

spiritII
05-12-2005, 03:52 AM
For those wondering:
890 = $1,136
2500 = $3,192

And, Woooooow!! That looks unutterably cool! Visit the factory, choose a cymbal setup, get it really cheap, and have tea with the man in charge?? That's awesome.

DxRocker
05-12-2005, 04:31 AM
and by the way, that mosque was originally a church when turkey was under the byzantine empire. however, when the ottoman empire conquered it in around the 15th or 16th century (not 100% on that one), constantinople was immediately made the capital of the ottoman empire (which spanned from the 13th century all the way to the 20th, by the way). glorifying constantinople, which was the roman capital in rome's later days (founded by the first christian empire Constantine somewhere around 223 AD), the ottoman sultans put a lot of cash into this city, making everything a very unique blend of european and middle eastern art and architecture

That's all very true, but you are confusing the Blue Mosque with the Aya Sophia. That was the one that used to be a church and got converted to a mosque. It is right behind the blue mosque. :thumb:

Ha, seems like this thread is a succes :D

I'm gonna go look for my recharger and get the rest of my pics up right now (and then I'm gonna go play the drums for the rest of the day :lol: )

And to those wondering: I didn't really have any connections. I just emailed Istanbul Agop and told them I was coming to Istanbul and that I would love to visit the factory and buy some cymbals. It is not a store, so they don't like it that you just come in there without warning. You have to make some kind of appointment so that they expect you. All in all, I think I stayed at the factory for about an hour and a half.

The man in charge spoke a little english, but not to much. Just enough to have a conversation and the explain a few things. But in the end, the sound of those cymbals and the location and workplace speak for themselves....

DxRocker
05-12-2005, 05:10 AM
Here we go...

This is the set of cymbals I bought:

http://users.telenet.be/Drums/mycymbals.JPG

The list once more (from left to right, for all 3 rows of cymbals)
- 17" traditional dark crash
- 20" alchemy sweet ride
- 16" traditional medium crash
- 14" alchemy medium crash
- 14" traditional thin crash
- 8" alchemy power splash
- 8" alchemy power splash
- 10" (I think at least, not specified) alchemy raw bell with sizzlers
- 10" (again, I think) traditional bell
- 14" alchemy sweet hi-hat

This one is a close up of the Raw Bell with sizzlers, that thing is fantastic!! :D

http://users.telenet.be/Drums/rawbell.JPG

If you guys want more close ups from the others, just ask and I will do my best to get them up.

Audio samples will follow soon, but I have alot to do the next couple of days, so I don't know when that will be. I'll do my best to record something as quickly as possible.

Enjoy :thumb:

Shane_sg
05-12-2005, 05:24 AM
:thumb:
Wow, that's amazing. Beautiful stuff.

PMSKnives
05-12-2005, 06:23 AM
OUTSTANDING score and LOVELY pics...Thanks for sharing...

Now go and hook up a mic and hit those things and send us the audio files...NOW!!ha
Mark

Jezen
05-12-2005, 07:28 AM
I might be going to that same factory in the summer holidays. I too am an Istanbul Agop user and fan. How did you gain access to the factory? Do they do guided tours? If so how much do they cost per person?
My cymbal set-up is as follows:

Istanbul Agop 13" Sultan Hi-Hats
Istanbul Agop 9" Traditonal Splash
Istanbul Agop 11" Traditional Splash
Istanbul Agop 16" Traditional Medium-Thin Crash
Istanbul Agop 17" Traditional Medium-Thin Crash
Istanbul Agop 20" Traditional Custom Dry Ride

Heres a couple of pictures of my beloved Istanbul Agop 20" Traditional Custom Dry Ride.

http://img222.echo.cx/img222/6619/myride22rl.jpg

http://img222.echo.cx/img222/6076/myride0ia.jpg

And here is a pic of my Sultan Hats. Crisp and complex.

http://img52.echo.cx/img52/3025/myhihats5ux.jpg

RushHourSoul
05-12-2005, 07:49 AM
Excellent thread! brilliant pictures! amazing cymbals!!

Double Bass Jim
05-12-2005, 08:21 AM
Man thats just insane, those look so nice.

spiritII
05-12-2005, 09:13 AM
I need new pants :(

Double Bass Jim
05-12-2005, 09:21 AM
I love the look of the sultan hats, I can just look at those for a good 5mins hahaha.

spiritII
05-12-2005, 09:25 AM
I love the look of the sultan hats, I can just look at those for a good 5mins hahaha.

I wonder if they sound different if you hit them on the differently finished bits? Cos that's a whole other type of sound in one set of hats if they do...

Jezen
05-12-2005, 09:42 AM
^^^
They do actually. Not a major difference though. But what I find incredibly impressive is that the bottom hat is actually heavier than the top. You don't see that too often these days.

Jezen
05-12-2005, 09:42 AM
The bottom hat is a goldier colour too

Josiah
05-12-2005, 09:46 AM
But what I find incredibly impressive is that the bottom hat is actually heavier than the top. You don't see that too often these days.

You're kidding right?

Double Bass Jim
05-12-2005, 09:50 AM
Theres only a few select pre-paired hats that have a heavy top hat, for instance the gadd ones do thats about it.

White Riot!
05-12-2005, 09:55 AM
now cmon, why would they speak english? has england ever ruled over turkey? turkey is extremely uninfluenced by the english, hence, why the **** would they speak english? im sure a good number of people there speak persian among other languages, i know turkish isnt a language

ED: i googled it, languages are Kurdish, Arabic, Armenian, Greek. i just remembered that persian was the language used in ottoman courts


Turkish IS AN ACTUAL language.



the turks descended from asiatic nomadic tribes around mongolia , invented belly dancers , kebabs , the double knotted rugs and harems :naughty:

while the americans...invented new sports because they couldnt win the traditional sports (lol) , the hot dog , the franchise , fast food.

therefore

Ottoman Culture > American Culture

How do I know all this? im half turk :lol:




(just joking about culture boys and girls)

spiritII
05-12-2005, 09:59 AM
They do actually. Not a major difference though.
Cool.

But what I find incredibly impressive is that the bottom hat is actually heavier than the top. You don't see that too often these days.

This has already been said, but, you're taking the piss, right? I can guarantee that if you look on the Zildjian, Sabian and Paiste sites that over 90% of the hats will have heavier bottoms than tops.

Jezen
05-12-2005, 10:06 AM
This has already been said, but, you're taking the piss, right? I can guarantee that if you look on the Zildjian, Sabian and Paiste sites that over 90% of the hats will have heavier bottoms than tops.

Ok I was over-exaggurating, but really all the entry level hats these days are very close in weight, whereas with Istanbul's there is a significant difference.
With alot of cymbals these days, you can't hear any real difference wether your hats are top/bottom or bottom/top.

I'd Hit it
05-12-2005, 10:16 AM
That's nuts man. I'm sure we were all expecting a big high tech factory and to our surprise we see these men sitting on little wooden chairs just hammering away. Definately vintage- old fashioned. Must have been a very cool experience.

you'd think with the money they make they'd renovate that poor factory...looks kinda in rough shape ^_^

Jezen
05-12-2005, 10:28 AM
I'm not sure if they even make that much money.

DxRocker
05-12-2005, 10:32 AM
yeah totally!

It really is just all about the art of making good fine cymbals over there!
And to be honest, I don't think they make all that much money!
Those cymbals really don't cost that much. You pay a lot for them in local stores becaue:
- they are the third or sometimes even fourth party that needs to have some profit on them
- they are "rare" since they are not the result of mass production

British boy, about that "tour". There is not much to tour you know? It's just 3 rooms:
one with a LOT of finished cymbals, 1 with an oven that melts the material and puts them in a rough cymbal form and 1 with some hammer dudes and the other two who finish them and put on logo's. And that is it :)

I love Istanbul. Where the quality comes before the money and the quantity!! :D

Jezen
05-12-2005, 10:40 AM
I agree whole-heartedly. :)

spiritII
05-12-2005, 11:36 AM
Ok I was over-exaggurating, but really all the entry level hats these days are very close in weight, whereas with Istanbul's there is a significant difference.
With alot of cymbals these days, you can't hear any real difference wether your hats are top/bottom or bottom/top.

I still disagree.

Der Meister
05-12-2005, 11:59 AM
With alot of cymbals these days, you can't hear any real difference wether your hats are top/bottom or bottom/top.

then you sir, have no ear

sleepless
05-12-2005, 01:00 PM
With alot of cymbals these days, you can't hear any real difference wether your hats are top/bottom or bottom/top.

Yes, maybe if they're the exact same size/weight.

Look at K/Z dynos, sold solely in that configuration because of the difference in sound of an identical K/K to an identical Z/Z.

Also, they sound MUCH more different if you have it K/Z to Z/K. I owned a pair for quite a while.

I didn't notice before but my current HHX Power Hats are Medium or Medium-Heavy top (I think). Not that big of a difference but they have Hi-Hat Top and Hi-Hat Bottom printed there for a reason.

Also I don't mean to sound like an *** or rude. Just giving my opinion...whether it was wanted or not. :D

****, I'm so jealous. And I thought I was planning a trip when I decided I'd like to make a visit to the Sabian plant. I feel very small now. :)

I'm totally jealous about your cymbals Dx. Awesome setup with amazing cymbals. I've played a few Istanbuls and they made my mouth water.

alexi2
05-12-2005, 01:17 PM
Awesome DX, I'm going too this summer :)

You and me once had a chat about it, and then my parents were wondering were to go to this summer, I gently said istanbul was pretty nice and went to the vacation store to get some istanbul books for them :p

next destination : Istanbul > factory :D:D

DxRocker
05-12-2005, 02:47 PM
Awesome DX, I'm going too this summer :)

You and me once had a chat about it, and then my parents were wondering were to go to this summer, I gently said istanbul was pretty nice and went to the vacation store to get some istanbul books for them :p

next destination : Istanbul > factory :D:D

nice :)

a few things that you might want to know about and tips:

1. the factory is on the European side of Istanbul. If you're staying on the asian side, then you are in for quite a drive to get to the factory. Also, Istanbul itself is a lot more interesting on the European side in my opinion...

2. go there by taxi, they cost less then public transport in belgium :p

3. make an oppointment before you go, email them before leaving belgium and if necessary, call them a day or two from your hotel before going.

4. buy a cymbal bag and when you return to belgium, just take the cymbal bag as your hand luggage on the airplane. You are only allowed 1 piece of hand luggage, so they won't bother you.

I had to open the bag before getting on the plane. The guy briefly checked out the cymbals and that was it. IF they give you trouble like "you're not supposed to take that on the plane" or whatever, just tell them that you worked it out with the traveling agency before you left Belgium and that the airline you fly with also said it wasn't a problem AT ALL. That should do it.
You also get a paper mentioning the stuff you bought at the factory. Make sure YOUR full name is on it... That will proove to those guys at the airport that the cymbals are for YOU, and not for selling them in Belgium, wich would make you taking the cymbals on the airplane illegal.

5. don't try to bargain, that part of Istanbul doesn't work that way :D

6. Have fun :lol:

If you have any questions, don't hesitate to ask :thumb:

EDIT: o yeah, another thing: don't go there because cymbals are "cheaper", go there because you love Istanbul and want to see the magic first hand ;)

MWDrummer
05-12-2005, 02:56 PM
thats awesome... I wish i could do that...

If I'm not mistaken doesn't Matt Matt McDonough from Mudvayne use those cymbals too?? they sound amazing from when I saw them live.

DxRocker
05-12-2005, 03:05 PM
could be, not sure...

Rick Latham is endorsed by istanbul, that I know

Jezen
05-12-2005, 03:37 PM
^^^
Yeah but Rick plays Mehmet not Agop.

DxRocker
05-12-2005, 04:17 PM
Isn't Mehmet also made by Agop?
I'm not sure actually... could be that those are made in another factory though...

Still, there was a poster in the cymbal room with Rick playing Istanbuls...

stevoibanez
05-12-2005, 04:21 PM
Looks like you had fun. Congrats man!

Jezen
05-12-2005, 04:23 PM
Zildjian K factory closes down. Two workers get together, have tea, make own company called Istanbul. One fella dies so company splits in two. Therefore now we have Istanbul Agop and Istanbul Mehmet.

LostInMusic464
05-12-2005, 05:16 PM
Post some pictures of those babies on your kit. That'd be great to see.

DxRocker
05-12-2005, 05:48 PM
Post some pictures of those babies on your kit. That'd be great to see.

it's coming :thumb:

I just set it up this afternoon. I needed to get some more stands as well :D
I forgot my camera so I couldn't take pics yet. It looks great though!

To give you a little taste in advance of the setup:

3 splashes
2 bells
1 china splash
1 mini china
1 big china
4 crashes
1 ride
1 hi-hat

That comes down to 14 cymbals on a 4-piece (5-piece if you count the aux snare though)
So much for the downsize I was so excited about :lol:

I'm still not going back to the full monster though...
Maybe just once to see how it will look like with EVERYTHING mounted :naughty:

milkmit
05-12-2005, 06:00 PM
<-- this noob is in awe.

Chippy569
05-12-2005, 07:17 PM
hey Dx, sounds like you had a blast :D

i'm psyched for some audio *taps foot*

Damo
05-14-2005, 08:53 AM
Whhaaatt!!
Crazy price!

... + airfare?

Sick-O
05-14-2005, 08:28 PM
For those wondering:
890 = $1,136
2500 = $3,192

Thanks :thumb:

FockerTheLopper
01-19-2006, 04:08 PM
WHAT!!! My island in greece is like 40 minutes by boat away from Turkey. I can see the mountains. I still haven't been there but when I go this summer I'm gonna go to Turkey and load up on cymbals!

Panopticon
01-19-2006, 04:12 PM
just HAD to bump it...didnt you?

Jezen
01-19-2006, 04:16 PM
WHAT!!! My island in greece is like 40 minutes by boat away from Turkey. I can see the mountains. I still haven't been there but when I go this summer I'm gonna go to Turkey and load up on cymbals!

Well done. Kudos to you. Way to revive a 7 month old thread.

Tim
01-19-2006, 04:21 PM
dont you just love when people bump old forgetten threads from last year?

FockerTheLopper
01-19-2006, 04:21 PM
I'm sorry...
Not really but I didn't know it was old because people remember it

Zildjian
01-19-2006, 06:37 PM
wow....gatta love istanbul's....and damn man u gat a deal

DxRocker
01-20-2006, 01:46 AM
Note to self: do NOT link 7 month old threads in other threads... - bumps are unavoidable

CasB
01-20-2006, 02:17 AM
Why didn't you go to the Masterwork factory? :p

-_-_-Phantom_Lord-_-_-
01-20-2006, 02:34 AM
Wow!! Thats a killer price, i might have to take a trip over there :naughty:
Did you have any troubles getting into the factory or finding it?

DxRocker
01-20-2006, 02:43 AM
1. read the whole thread

2. stop bumping this 7 months old thread please

fredd
01-20-2006, 08:43 AM
Sounds like an awesome trip!

Talos
01-20-2006, 09:03 AM
Whoa! That facotry is weird! I was expecting it to be a huge prestigous place but it turned out to be completely the opposite.

But I dont know anything about Turkey so.