PPT mouthpieces

Beginner does anyone know if this will help to dampen the sound for practice

mick wilson

Hinckley Leicestershire
Hi all Long time since i posted can anyone help Due to me now living in a flat in sheffield its difficult to practice. due to the volume that the sax makes. I have been looking at different ways of dampening the sound and found this on ebay


can anyone tell me if I would be wasting my hard earned cash if i bought one. I would like a practice bag but theyre out my price range.

I would suggest saving your money and putting a wadded up handkerchief in your bell. Only the low B and Bb will be adversely affected and the sound will be cut even more than the expensive so called "mute". If you practice at lower dynamic levels mf and below it will help also.

This may sound silly, but if you are practicing scales and such that don't require reading music, you could cover yourself with a blanket or bedspread as well---although you might need to come up for air every few minutes.
Really INeffective. I was given one of those kits. Only effect I could tell was from the mouthpiece component, makes it harder to blow. Net effect, you blow harder to try to get a decent sound. Totally counterproductive.
Have you got a Wardrobe or large airingcupboard you could stand in? Failing this the only thing that would probably work would be an E sax or sax partner mute, the latter being much cheaper but still dear. If i had the dosh thats the first thing i would get. Good luck.
Hi mick,i have had same problem i live in a flat as well,but i agree with trimmy,have a word with neighbours and sod em. My neighbours have only been here five minutes and think they own the block,i just blast away to my heart content>:)>:) and would you believe it they never sent me a xmas card!!:)))Bumnote.
The problem with the dampening of your sound is that you never assess your real sound... I live in a semidetached house and know what you are engaged in! I tried many things with my bigot neighbour who is intolerant with everything which is sound maker, no matter the "noise" volume is!

I was in peace since some months while yesterday he digged up the hatchet... He has a one-track mind: "Me, myself, and I". So, I decide to play without trying to mute my sax as I know that to have this "fellow" completely satisfied is just a utopia... ;}
Apparently Scottish tenor player Tommy Smith, who grew up in Glasgow tenement block, made his own practice bag out of a large cardboard box with 3 holes: one for the mouthpiece and one for each hand!

Here's a simple one, but it's not quite 100% because it takes a bit of fiddling around.

Use a bit of very loose weave gauze that is crumpled and loosely put this into the bottom end of the neck (well below the octave vent). This cuts down the sound by roughly 70% without giving too much back pressure. The problem is that you need to change the gauze frequently as it gets wet and soggy. If there is too much back pressure you're using too much gauze. If it blows down below the neck it's not enough or not wadded up so that it stays in place, or might be too wet and needs replacement.

Cheap, simple, but just slightly fiddly. Hopefully it works for you. Let me know what you think.
Maybe I should try this. Is the stuff gauze banadages are made of what you're thinking of?

Hi Kev, Yes it's the loose weave stuff that comes in a roll. Very thin and airy. You wad up a bit and try to keep as much air space as possible so that it doesn't block the air, but absorbs sound. Will take a little bit of trial and error to get it right, and unfortunately doesn’t last for more than half an hour before needing to be redone, but cheap and relatively easy. Let me know how it goes for you.


Will do. Maybe a plastic scourer would do the same thing

I guess you can give it a try, but they are a very tight weave compared to gauze and I would think might restrict airflow somewhat. I haven't tried too many materials, but the trick is to not be giving too much back pressure for maximum sound absorption. If you live in an environment where this could be your regular means of practice, it could affect the amount of air support that becomes "normal". This could be good/positive if when playing out you need to project a lot of sound, but could also be difficult if (like me) you are playing in small cafes that require a small sound with good presence.

Let us know what you come up with.
For about £100 you could buy both a trumpet and a practice mute - this produces a much quieter sound which you cannot even hear in an adjoining room, let alone an adjoining flat or house. There are no reeds or ligatures to worry about, no need for a strap etc. and only 3 keys to press. It has the range of an Alto Sax, is in the key of a Tenor Sax and is lighter than a Soprano Sax - what could be better. By playing the trumpet it will mean that NONE of your saxes will disturb the neighbours who will all love you much more!

Been going through all this and have got a bag from Kev (who is probably too good a guy to advertise that instead of accepting payment for it he asked for a contribution to the charity, and I will keep his secret to the grave) but on this issue I took my alto, which I rarely play now, new Yamaha, to the factory yesterday morning and blew it till my brains rattled. I had forgotten what a beautiful instrument it is, you do not get the real deal when you are muting, but needs must, I guess. Good tip Wade, will try that too since my neighbours are neanderthal and just looking at them scares me half to death.
I'm really quite lucky, I live in a flat but I have decent neighbours who don't mind my saxophone, no matter how loud I play it. Next door play the drums, and our walls are only wood and plasterboard. The only thing my neighbours mind is when, so I keep it to around midday to, at the most, half six in the evening.

So you're worried about the noise... Play it at a reasonable time, and sod 'em. :)

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