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Saxophones Hanson alto saxes

SaxMart

Member
Messages
129
Hi all, I'm considering a new alto ( I currently play a c 1948 MK2 Zephyr which I will keep ), does anyone have experience of Hanson student/intermediate eg series V?
Thanks
Marty
 

eb424

Member
Messages
574
Hi Marty I started on Hansons and have just PXed my SA6 with them its not new but was one of there top horns. Most reviews say the same; quality is good service is great, the only reason that i swapped mine back was that as a boutique vendor they are not as well known but we reap the benefits of this by getting great saxes at really great prices from a great company. The only problem is if you want to PX away from Hansons prices are really low. Its a shame they are not out there in the market as the Tenor I had was brilliant too just as good as my current model tenor but winning hands down on price...
 

SaxMart

Member
Messages
129
Hi Marty I started on Hansons and have just PXed my SA6 with them its not new but was one of there top horns. Most reviews say the same; quality is good service is great, the only reason that i swapped mine back was that as a boutique vendor they are not as well known but we reap the benefits of this by getting great saxes at really great prices from a great company. The only problem is if you want to PX away from Hansons prices are really low. Its a shame they are not out there in the market as the Tenor I had was brilliant too just as good as my current model tenor but winning hands down on price...
Thanks that's really helpful, I've seen them mentioned on here before but didn't know much about them or where to buy them. Just looked on their website and their prices seem very good I love my old zephyr but would like a modern horn with better ergonomics and tuning and if possible keeping that "vintage" sound.
 

sax panther

Member
Subscriber
Messages
517
I used to have an SA5 (the older name for their intermediate model) that I bought from Hanson as an ex display model. It replaced a Trevor James "the horn" and the difference was huge - so much nicer to play. I don't have it anymore as I part exchanged it for an SA8, which I love. I also have an ST8 tenor, and a T6 A clarinet from them. If you want to get in touch with them, give them a call - they are lovely people and make fine instruments, but are awful at answering emails.
 

Stephen Howard

Well-Known Member
Messages
2,017
I've done an awful lot of work on Hanson saxes lately, and I'm going to sound a cautionary note.
They're good horns - at a very good price - but the run of T8's I've seen of late have exhibited build quality issues. The LX series, however, seems to be faring rather better.
 

Mostlytenor

Member
Messages
76
I have a Hanson Series 8 and a SA6 alto. I like them both.
The current models are different from the previous iterations of the same name. The older ones from 5 years ago or so are heavier and have thicker walls. I don't know if this applies to the LX.
 

Tenor Viol

Full of frets in North Shropshire
Subscriber
Messages
5,955
My ST8 tenor was prone to going out of alignment rather easily. My LX tenor sounded good, but the G# was very prone to sticking (more than usual) with a repeated regulation issue.
 

DavidUK

Well-Known Member
Messages
4,954
This may be of interest: Saxophones - Well well... my "new" Hanson is a Buffet 400!

When I last spoke to Alastair Hanson he told me his horns are being counterfeited in China. He was strolling through the markets there when his daughter spotted one. I've seen a fake advertised over here on eBay. So do watch out if buying 2nd hand. If you can get through on the phone and Alastair's feeling chatty he's a mine of information and will guide you as to which of his models might suit.
 

DavidUK

Well-Known Member
Messages
4,954
Brand-wise, interestingly there's currently a used Hanson ST8 Tenor on eBay, being sold by Hanson, with 5yr g'tee at £1,100 Buy-it-Now, and a very similar used Buffet 400 Tenor on eBay with a starting price of £1,100.

Links: Pre-owned Hanson ST8-V Tenor Saxophone. Vintage Finish. 5 Years Warranty. | eBay


No doubt the Buffet seller had watched the auction for another 400 last week, which sold for £970: Buffet Crampon 400 Series Professional Tenor Sax-Vintage finish. Mint condition! | eBay

My point? The Buffet brand and all the hype (at the time) over the 400 model may stand a buyer in good stead when he comes to sell it on. Buying a very similar Hanson gives you, perhaps, the same sound at a better used price but may not hold its value so well. Having said that, I think both will struggle at £1,100.
 

SaxMart

Member
Messages
129
I used to have an SA5 (the older name for their intermediate model) that I bought from Hanson as an ex display model. It replaced a Trevor James "the horn" and the difference was huge - so much nicer to play. I don't have it anymore as I part exchanged it for an SA8, which I love. I also have an ST8 tenor, and a T6 A clarinet from them. If you want to get in touch with them, give them a call - they are lovely people and make fine instruments, but are awful at answering emails.
So is the current series V a replacement for the SA5 as I find the website a little confusing. Am I right in thinking their range is SAV-Lite as a student, series V as an intermediate and series VIII as professional with the LX custom as top professional?
 

GrumpyJim

Member
Messages
32
I have a Hanson Series V Alto, had it for one year, can't fault it (as a newbie), have tried different makes, but I think the Hanson is the best I've encountered.

I've just acquired a Hanson ST5Mk1 Tenor and I'm really impressed with the "playability"

As previously stated, Alastair himself is a fount of information (if you catch him when he's not busy)
 

SaxMart

Member
Messages
129
I've done an awful lot of work on Hanson saxes lately, and I'm going to sound a cautionary note.
They're good horns - at a very good price - but the run of T8's I've seen of late have exhibited build quality issues. The LX series, however, seems to be faring rather better.
Thanks Stephen, that's really helpful I like the ethos of Hanson - have you had any dealings with the series V altos?
 

SaxMart

Member
Messages
129
I have a Hanson Series V Alto, had it for one year, can't fault it (as a newbie), have tried different makes, but I think the Hanson is the best I've encountered.

I've just acquired a Hanson ST5Mk1 Tenor and I'm really impressed with the "playability"

As previously stated, Alastair himself is a fount of information (if you catch him when he's not busy)
Thanks for that info as I think I'll go for the V series right now and maybe trade up to a Vlll in the future since they do the great trade in deal. I've had my King Zephyr for so long and am so used to the vintage sound that I want something that combines that "old school" sound but with modern ergonomics (the low C# is a really pinky buster on the Zephyr), I recently tried a Yamaha YAS 280 and although a nice sax I found it a bit too thin sounding
 

Mostlytenor

Member
Messages
76
I have a series VIII tenor which was without issues from the beginning. The only thing I had done was to have an octave key guide (the U shaped thing that keeps the key in place) fitted. Alastair Hanson told me that that was deliberate for some tonal reason but I wanted one anyway because the octave key accidentally got snagged in something and was yanked sideways and had to be straightened out. I thought the lack of a guide was unique to Hansons but from seeing pictures of other makes of sax it seems not. Daft in my opinion.
I think they are good quality instruments and sound great. From my dealings with Alastair Hanson I'd say he would sort out any faults without quibble if you were unfortunate enough to get a flawed one.
 

Stephen Howard

Well-Known Member
Messages
2,017
I think they are good quality instruments and sound great. From my dealings with Alastair Hanson I'd say he would sort out any faults without quibble if you were unfortunate enough to get a flawed one.

I wouldn't be so sure.
Here's the low F on a VIII tenor. It had been 'set up'. Almost all the tonehole were visibly warped - but this one was the only one that had evidence that it had been worked on. Someone's filed it across the apex in order to attempt to level it. And I say 'attempt' because - as the lower shot shows - they didn't finish the job.
I also had to fit oversized rods to the upper and lower stacks to take up the free play in the pillars and barrels.
hanson t8 toneholes.jpg
 

Ballymenaboy

Member
Subscriber
Messages
124
Hi all, I'm considering a new alto ( I currently play a c 1948 MK2 Zephyr which I will keep ), does anyone have experience of Hanson student/intermediate eg series V?
Thanks
Marty
I am waiting for my new Hanson mkv alto to arrive.I purchased Hanson as I have Hanson mkv111 tenor and Mkv soprano and am and have been delighted with both.Hanson have an excellent after sales service and are a very personal company headed by Alastair Hanson and always willing to go the extra mile.
 

SaxMart

Member
Messages
129
I am waiting for my new Hanson mkv alto to arrive.I purchased Hanson as I have Hanson mkv111 tenor and Mkv soprano and am and have been delighted with both.Hanson have an excellent after sales service and are a very personal company headed by Alastair Hanson and always willing to go the extra mile.
Sounds good, please give update when you have time on how the alto is set up and performs as I do quite fancy one thanks
Marty
 

GaryF

Member
Messages
161
I used to have an SA5 (the older name for their intermediate model) that I bought from Hanson as an ex display model. It replaced a Trevor James "the horn" and the difference was huge - so much nicer to play. I don't have it anymore as I part exchanged it for an SA8, which I love. I also have an ST8 tenor, and a T6 A clarinet from them. If you want to get in touch with them, give them a call - they are lovely people and make fine instruments, but are awful at answering emails.
SP, Did you try the LX? I’m going next week to have a blow - apparently, the polishing process has been tweaked and the bodywork is now polished by walnuts, helping to reduce some of the issues seen in the past, with bits being bent/misaligned.
 
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