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M/Pieces - Ligs Alto Sax mouthpiece review: Windcraft Etude

TomMapfumo

Well-Known Member
Messages
5,219
Hi Folks!

Further to my recent Review of £15 beginner mouthpieces I have recently been trialling the Windcraft Etude HR Alto Sax mpc (0.065") which I have been playing alongside my usual Phil-Tone/Mouthpiece Cafe/Runyon 22 suspects.

Designed by Prof. Anton Weinberg, it is based on the Meyer G (for Gregory) mouthpiece, and retails at £45 at Dawkes.co.uk - an excellent online music store.

To use the same criteria as previously I used the same reed (Rigotti Gold 2.5) and ligature (Marc Jean) and did some unaccompanied exercises as well as played a couple of tunes with backing tracks. I felt the Etude was a very high quality mouthpiece, which had a broadly mellow, yet lively tone. It could be pushed and had a pleasant brightness when needed. The tone competed well with my more expensive pieces, and was most similar IMO to my Phil-Tone Aurora, which had the NY vibe but on the darker side. I also thought that it was close to the Runyon 22 sound, but would rate it more highly, with a slightly fuller tone.

My Phil-Tone Solstice - which has the classic Paul Desmond dry vibe - outshone the Etude in terms of liveliness, mellowness and dryness. The Etude had a "wetter" sound but was very playable. The Meyer G is supposed to embody the Desmond West Coast sound, and the Etude had the mellowness, but not a very dry sound. It had slightly less volume - partly due to the smaller tip opening, but could be pushed and coped well when I played some pieces with backing tracks. It was not as bright or powerful as my Mouthpiece Cafe NYC, which is more traditional Meyer like.

Given the price (£45) I would rate it very highly. It had a very authentic American/Meyer type quality and would particularly hold its own in mainstream and related jazz, latin and similar. It had a more traditional sound and, for my money outshone the Runyon 22, which sounded marginally thinner. I see it competing well with the Vandoren V16, Meyer HR and similar pro pieces, but at a much cheaper price and with a beginner friendly tip opening similar to the Yamaha 4C/Selmer S80 C*

Highly Recommended!
Tom.:thumb:
 
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TimC

Member
Messages
50
Just got myself the Windcraft Etude alto mpc a few days ago and I have to say I'm really enjoying it. I've been playing two months on a Hite Premiere that while a good improvement over the Jupiter 4C mpc that came with my Jupiter 769 sax, never made me feel quite comfortable while playing. Especially the notes from low C and below have been tough despite going at it daily.

Now playing on the Windcraft Etude it both feels and sounds better. That low B is actually beginning to be usable in songs and while tonguing I've almost stopped to involuntarily go up an octave as I did sometimes on the Hite. Overall I'm really happy with the upgrade, and it's actually quite cheap for an ebonite mpc. And good value always makes me happy! :thumb:
 

TomMapfumo

Well-Known Member
Messages
5,219
Glad you like it - it is an excellent piece, well made, and obviously plays and feels good.
Thanks for letting us know what you thought!

Kind regards
Tom
 
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