To hammer, or not to hammer, that is the question.
How large of an impact does hand hammering of bells have on the sound of the horn? Everything else being equal, does a hand hammered bell have better tone than a non-hammered bell? And, what is the difference...warmer, darker, brighter, more resonance, feedback, etc.?
It seems that nearly every manufacturer employs both methods of manufacturing and they are quick to point out which models are hammered as being better constructed from the standpoint of sound quality.