A used saxophone is the most cost-effective option. Don't. Features an active saxophone forum, buy sell trade your sax, saxophone museum, sax teachers and more. Sometimes getting a good playing relaquered VI for $1500 less is the way to go. A classic example of this is the Couf. Student models generally use more rigorous materials, such as nickel-silver rods, stronger bell braces, side-rod configurations, and heavy-duty lacquer. The serial numbers most players like are above 140,000. If all you see is brass, be wary. When it gets down to it, it is not the saxophone making the music, it is you! If it gleams and looks well cared for, you can guess that it was rarely played or treated exceptionally well. They have also snatched up a lot of big name saxophone artists as endorsers along the way. (This is one good reason why it is good to buy horns from a Professional Saxophone Shop like Saxquest because they will fix many of these inconsistancies.) Top 5 Best Saxophone Brands of All Time are listed here:1. What do you think is the worst brand of reed ever, not the worst reed, but worst brand, a brand whose notoriety to you for unplayable reeds in a box is intolerable, the sight of this brand makes you sick, the price is an utter rip off. He reluctantly agreed. The more horns you look at, the better equipped you will be to know exactly what you are looking at. Look for areas where the gold may be wearing off. An advanced "trick" is to play the overtones of Bb, B, C and D and compare them to their fingered counterparts. Sometimes you can even get a new saxophone at a very good price. In closing, the best piece of advice we can give is to be as informed as possible. Pictures in an auction can be very misleading. My personal experience with individual dealers has been highly variable and usually negative, as detailed in earlier sections. Just be careful of brands that are made anywhere but the USA, France, Germany, Japan, and for the most part Taiwan. Also, the saxophone relies on a mouthpiece and single reed (just like a clarinet) to produce the vibration that becomes the saxophone's tone. The ubiquitous new generation cheap Chinese saxophone. Mouthpieces (preferably jazz, classical, and medium models), For non-players, you should try and examine the horn as closely as possible. These are caused by the technique used to remove dents from a saxophone. In most cases, if a horn is gold plated, it is worth more than a horn that is silver plated. Also, you may or may not get the needed accessories included with the instrument. Here is a list of the top brands for saxophones. On-line auctions have a similar feeling, although with a certain sterility. The best way is to look for spots where there are vertical lines of distortion in the lacquer. All of the writing will be easy to read, and the serial number will be completely legible. Never bid on an on-line auction that does not have photos either in the listing or available through e-mail, and ask specifically for photos showing any damage or wear. That being said, the Balanced Action and Super Balanced Action are still highly sought after, and are even sometimes preferred over the Mark VI. They were sort of OK on alto but unusable on tenor. For pretty much the entire "modern" era of saxophone making there have been four brands (often referred to as the big 4) that have been considered to consistently make high quality horns by most in the saxophone community. The consistancy level is very high horn to horn with Keilwerth, but there are small differences in timbre, and you might find one horn that just feels a little better than another. If you want to take your music seriously spending a little more to start with will mean you don’t have to replace your sax and spend more money because you’ve outgrown your sax or worse it couldn’t stand up to the amount you want to play! New (8) ... Open quick view dialog for Allora AAS-450 Vienna Series Alto Saxophone. The following sections will deal with purchasing a horn on-line in depth. Mouthpieces are a separate purchase and will be covered only briefly in this guide. The neck should be completely smooth with no dents. This pushes the dent back up, but also distorts the lacquer where the dent is. Today's market is full of many manufacturers who claim to offer cheap "professional" model horns. If you do decide to purchase from an individual dealer, make sure you ask all of the questions up front and know where you stand if you need or want to return the instrument. Some players love a certain horn and others hate it. Moreover, each of these saxophone types have different saxophone Voices that correspond to various playing techniques and musical genres, from vibrato playing and jazz to classical music. I cannot, however, play the synthetics by Woodwind & Brass Wind. I tried a plastic Bari brand reed and that was pretty bad too. You should see silver around those areas. Recently, there has been a great influx of central-Asian made instruments on the American market. http://www.saxophone.org/museum/saxophones/manufacturer/61. One note of caution: if the owner says "this horn belonged to...", be skeptical, unless the owner has positive proof. 1. This can be a repair nightmare and can cause a great deal of expense. The thing about an overhauled vintage horn is that if the new player doesn`t stick with it, it`s resaleable for your original investment - or in my case I can actually get more than what I have in both of those. Professional saxophones can run up to $4000 for soprano, $6000 for alto and tenor, and up to $10,000 for baritone. The body is the most important part of the saxophone. In the past, curved sopranos took a bad rap for playing out of tune. All about saxophones. These horns featured a refined action (although not "balanced" like the Selmers), and some unusual keying features. If the person can't answer any of these questions and acts nervous, the horn may be stolen, in which case you can ask for the serial number and call the police to have them check it out. I called the police and they sent a plain clothes officer who purchased the stolen bari for $50, then arrested the guy. Your tastes will even change as you evolve as a player. The sellers are usually parents (possibly just like you) who have purchased a saxophone for their child who has decided not to play it anymore, or a dealer who has purchased the horn from exasperated parents. Mark: Okay, well thank you very much for your time. Here are the ways to determine if a horn is what they say it is: This is a hard determination to make without the experience of seeing a gold plated horn, although a good way to tell is to compare the color to any gold jewelry you may be wearing. Do you know any specific information such as manufacture date? Prepare to break out your wallet. It'll probably say something like "Pattented 1914" and have an A by it. Also, have the person or store send you detailed photos of the saxophone first, either through the mail or e-mail. The saxophone was first invented in 1846 by a Belgian instrument maker, flutist, and clarinetist named Adolphe Sax. How Can I Tell What CONDITION a sax is in? This is not to say that all horns produced today are shoddy, it is just a fact of modern business that quantity sometimes compromises quality. Also, if your saxophone was to be stolen, you know you could go to your local Yamaha dealer and get another identical horn. The bottom line is to make sure the horn looks like it is in good shape. North American has been flooded with really cheap saxophones made by … In general, all the other instruments I review (at least those still in production) are global brands. http://www.saxophone.org/museum/saxophones/manufacturer/1. 5.0 of 5 stars (1 Reviews) $1,149.99 Was: Was Price $ 1,399.99. For saxophonists today, these old horns can offer a unique. Hopefully after reading this you can start to make intelligent decisions about what you want to look for and how you want to find it. Long live jazz! You generally don't see as many of them as the other three big brands, but they definitely hold their own. When searching for a new or used saxophone, there are literally hundreds of places to look on-line for it. So if you can't afford the best and most expensive horn on the planet, try and make the best decision you can with what you have, and remember that the music is what it's all about. The newest horns on the market are all strong competitors and deserve to be tried on their own merits. The keys are usually made of brass or nickel and are often covered with mother-of-pearl where your index, pointer and ring finger touch. Invented in 1846, the saxophone was named after inventor Adolphe Sax. When you are first starting out, it's not the sound of the saxophone that matters, it's how it looks. Does the horn still have its original factory finish, or has it been relacquered? Mark VIs come with a lot of hype, and they can live up to it, but you should definitely try to play several of them before you buy. Some horns, are just not worth what people ask for them. You are buying their shops work, and they want to make sure that you are very happy with what you get. Though I doubt that no reed is 100% consistant. Buying horns over the Internet poses another level of complexity since you are relying on a written description or electronic photographs. Also, try a chromatic scale slowly from the lowest to the highest notes so you can check for leaking pads. A Taiwanise instrument manufacturer called Albest Music has recently(within the last 10 years) started putting out a saxophone brand called P Mauriat that really has kind of taken the world by storm. As with Selmer saxophones, we could write an entire novel about Conn saxophones. It can never hurt to ask too many questions! entually need to be replaced if possible. The action is … In the beginning of the Internet "gold rush," a really interesting thing happened. Some reeds do play easier than others, but for a guy with a strong embouchure, any reed can sound great. Seller: I bought it in high school in 1972 and it has been sitting in the case since then. The saxophone is comprised of two major parts: the neck and the body. no wonder they were a flop, runyon mouthpeices-no need to look elsewhere. Two words always apply with any on-line purchase... BE CAREFUL! We will try to focus on the horns which we have had personal experiences with and recommend horns which have what we consider to be significant positive characteristics. New Selmer saxophones are not the most consistent horns out there. After all, it's now yours! Mail order from online sites is the method in which most horns are sold on a national level. ion, chances are the person is a dealer or has not owned the horn for that long. These horns seem to last and put up with a lot of playing. They are truly great horns, but are they worth more than a Selmer Mark VII? Hope you have fun playing-I love playing my sax; it is a great way thing to be able to make music and play an instrument. I am tired of wasting money on at least 60 percent bad reeds in a box, I want to switch to alexander,but havent quite killed the box I am on now. Suddenly the old reed player in Walla Walla, Washington, received calls from New York on his old saxophones instead of from across town. The defining trait is that USA Selmers do not say "Made in France" or have any other French writing on them. Come join the discussion about collections, care, displays, models, styles, reviews, accessories, classifieds, and more! You are going to make a large financial investment, and one that I believe is worth making. alternative to a new horn. Also much like Selmer, new Keilwerth saxophones can get a little pricey, so it's good to find the right horn for you. It has a silver key on the neck, and it's slightly brighter finish than the rest of the horn. Hopefully after reading this guide, you will be better equipped to determine these important facts. In fact, some music stores even rope them off or put them in glass cabinets. The moral of the story is to always be prepared. Apparently his little sister played it in pep band that whole year. The rods of the saxophone are very important. In our experience, the type of finish does affect the timbral characteristics, although not in an extreme way. If the person can't answer any of these questions and acts nervous, the horn may be stolen, in which case you can ask for the serial number and call the police to have them check it out. Are there resources locally to try them, or do I need to look outside of my area? These dealers typically relied on the premise that vintage horns were incredibly scarce and extremely valuable, a premise that the Internet has radically dissolved. These brands are, in no particular order, Selmer Paris, Yamaha, Yanagisawa, and Keilwerth. The consistancy level is very high horn to horn with Keilwerth, but there are small differences in timbre, and you might find one horn that just feels a little better than another. If you suspect a horn may be stolen, report it to the police. Horns began appearing in Internet classifieds at the prices they were selling for in the real world. Within this category, there are three different types of businesses: non-specialized single-store retailers, specialized single-store retailers and non-specialized multi-store retailers. Can you tell me more about it? The Cleveland models(Cleveland is stamped on the bell, and that is the city they were manufactured in) are considered by many to be the best vintage Super 20s. They can be purchased through a variety of retail stores as well as online ones. I also test close multiphonics to see how the acoustics of the horn react. I agree Riff. Rico international covers a fairly wide range of reeds doesn't it? Used horns are not always going to be in perfect condition when you go to look at it. The body should be smooth and round. Solder is used to hold all the parts onto a saxophone. It just means that you need to ask the right questions and make sure you know what you are buying. Besides that, the saxophone also features advanced leather pads that provide enhanced elasticity, not to mention the high airtightness for a well-controlled tone. The actual market value on the horn was closer to $300. Top saxophone brands 24 items ranked. The Mark VI is a truly great saxophone, but you must reserve judgment until you play it. One final tip -- always bring a small container of rubbing alcohol or some other safe anti-bacterial substance if you don't have your own mouthpiece. They are also considerably cheaper than a Mark VI (usually almost half the price) or even used current production Selmers. Sometimes the horn you are looking at has been stolen from someone. er was and is a "player's horn" and was quickly adopted by the greats of the day. It was a new pack so none of the reeds had been sanded or scraped or improved in any way. You just never know what you may turn up. They are known as the Rev D. and Gold Medal models. Early in production, Colonel C. G. Conn sold his instrument empire to pursue politics. You never know what you may find when going to look at an instrument. Most pawn shops are reputable, but its still the first call most police make when taking a "stolen instrument" call. Another feedback-boosting tool some sellers use is buying or selling lots of inexpensive items specifically to receive good feedback. Just like the earlier vintage Mark VI though, they can be inconsistant, so you should definitely try them before you consider buying. Also, there are only a few models which were actually gold plated. You will be able to see lines, or splits in the lacquer along the side of the neck where the metal was bent out. For players, when you go to try a horn always pack the following essential items: For non-players, you should try and examine the horn as closely as possible. Small (less than 5mm across) dents will not affect the sound of the horn, but excessive dents should be figured into the price. These horns were manufactured in France and the most popular models are from the 50's and 60's vintage. They are more likely to be plated (instead of lacquered) and have much stiffer brass. If you've ever wondered where the saxophone got its curious name, it was invented in the mid-1800s by Adolphe Sax, son of Belgian instrument maker Charles Joseph Sax. It has a silver key on the neck, and it's slightly brighter finish than the rest of the horn. To the untrained eye, it looks like they have lots of glowing feedback, but the truth is it is all self-generated. Last but not least, is the craftsmanship. If I didn't know what gold plating looked like, I could have easily been fooled. They usually had a good selection of highly desirable or collectible horns and some personality that was often missing from larger stores. Most music stores will also rent saxophones if you would like to try one out. In fact, some music stores even rope them off or put them in glass cabinets. Click on up and down arrows to affect item's ranking Add item. Sometimes the horn you are looking at has been stolen from someone. If the horn doesn't play, you don't know how it sounds, and the value should drop accordingly. Most of these horns are "high pitch" instruments, and are tuned higher than A440 (today's standard for tuning). These horns look and sometimes feel like professional models, but are actually student models. I gave them all away. Once again, it is always good to check out a Pro-Shop like Saxquest, because they have a ton of knowledge, and the horns they sell are guaranteed to play. When you play a vintage sax from the earlier part of the 20th century and compare it to one of the newer ones from after the middle part of the century and earlier, you will notice the feel is very different. Their crowning jewel is the Super 20 model, which in it's Silversonic version sports a solid sterling silver neck and bell, mother of pearl on every key, and sometimes even gold plated inlaid engraving (even on the larger key cups)! Hardy Prima Sankyo Altus Flutes Haynes Muramatsu Nomata Thomas ONLY BUY FROM THESE BRANDS FOR THE BEST QUALITY EVER! Below we take a look at the Best Alto Saxophone.Finding the best Alto Saxophone, or Alto Sax as it is commonly referred to as being challenging. Hopefully after reading this guide, you will be better equipped to determine these important facts. The Buescher 400 or Top Hat and Cane (the early version with the silver tone ring around the bell, and top hat and cane engraving) is also an excellent horn and was played by Johnny Hodges (yes, that sweet sound was a Buescher). There are still plenty of vintage Selmers out there, but the price tag has grown recently. 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