In this work, experiments were performed to study the effect of cathode materials on the amplitude of the super-short avalanche electron beam (SAEB) current and X-ray density during discharges in atmospheric-pressure air. In the experiments, discharges were generated by three nanosecond-pulse generators in air gaps between a plane anode and a tubular cathode made of different metals. The output pulse of the three generators had a rise time of 0.3, 1, 15 ns, and a full width at half maximum of 1, 2, 30–40 ns, respectively. For the generators with pulse rise-time of 0.3 and 1 ns, the cathodes used in these experiments were made of stainless steel, permalloy, titanium, niobium, copper, brass, and aluminum. For the generator with pulse rise-time of 15 ns, the cathodes were made of stainless steel, titanium, copper, and aluminum. When the rise time of the applied pulse is 0.3 ns, our experimental results show that the amplitude of the voltage across the gap depends on the cathode material and reaches its maximum value when a stainless steel cathode is used. It is also observed that, under such situation, the maximum amplitudes of the SAEB current occur at maximum voltages across the gap when all other factors are equal. Furthermore, the amplitude of the SAEB current hereof is found to depend not only on the material of the sharp edge of the tubular cathode, but also on the material of the side surface of the tubular cathode. When the rise time of the applied pulse is 1 ns, the experimental results show that the average number of electrons in SAEB is also affected by the cathode materials. In addition, in the case that the rise time of the voltage pulse is 15 ns and the gap spacing is 8 cm, the experimental results show that the cathode material has no effect on the voltage amplitude across the gap and the X-ray density. The increase of the pulse repetition frequency from 250 to 500 Hz under such condition can lead to a three-fold increase in X-ray density in a repetitive pulsed mode.