All profit supporting special needs music education and Help Musicians

Metal resonators, all sizes, cheap?

DavidUK

Well-Known Member
Café Supporter
Messages
5,935
Locality
Near Lutterworth, Leics.
I'm conducting an experiment... I need domed metal resonators.

Q. Are they the same sizes for, say, alto, tenor, baritone or do they get bigger the larger the instrument?
Q2. Is the best way to buy a set of cheap resos to buy a cheap set of chinese pads?

Bit cryptic, apologies, but it probably won't work, hence the cheapness of the experimental material.
 

Dr G

Member
Messages
477
Locality
Northern California
Resos are sized to the tone hole.

If one is really nickpicky, you can take off the keys, measure the tone hole diameter, and size the reso such that each pad has the same amount of area covered by the reso (such as I did on one of my tenors with custom resos cut and shaped for each position).

For the truly frugal, buy cheap pads with pre-installed resos. That should guarantee the cheapest reso for each pad.
 

thomsax

Well-Known Member
Messages
4,482
Locality
Sweden
If one is really nickpicky, you can take off the keys, measure the tone hole diameter, and size the reso such that each pad has the same amount of area covered by the reso (such as I did on one of my tenors with custom resos cut and shaped for each position).
That what I did. I wanted oversized flat bras ResoTechs. I ordered resonators that was 5-6 mm from the tonehole rims. Most of pads are coverved with brass resonators. I have sterling silver resonators as well on two saxes. But the pad job was done in USA. IA or NJ.
 

jbtsax

Well-Known Member
Café Supporter
Messages
8,788
Locality
Beautiful Springville, Utah USA
Just a word of caution about "oversized resos". It is important when figuring the sizes to make sure that the key cup is perfectly centered over the tonehole. The tonehole impression in the pad is a good indicator how close it is to centered. Side to side is easy to correct. Front to back is much more difficult.
 

John Setchell

Member
Messages
283
Locality
Norfolk UK
That what I did. I wanted oversized flat bras ResoTechs. I ordered resonators that was 5-6 mm from the tonehole rims. Most of pads are coverved with brass resonators. I have sterling silver resonators as well on two saxes. But the pad job was done in USA. IA or NJ.
Did the resonators material make much difference to tone?
 

thomsax

Well-Known Member
Messages
4,482
Locality
Sweden
Did the resonators material make much difference to tone?
I can't hear any difference between metal, plastic/nylon ... . A guy I talked to, who worked for the music industry, told that the human ear can't hear it but there was a differnce in the acustic lab ..... . So the answer is yes and no. My bari had domed plastic resonators. Some of them were "twisted" and also "brittle". If water/moisture comes under the pad don't last so long. But I shouldn't complain. I bought my baritone sax in the early 80's and around 2016 it was ready for new pads. By then it was hardly playable. Oversize resonators are cool. But I don't think I'm going to do it myself again. Took nearly 6 months. The resonators are costum made and were expensive as well and I orded the basic model, flat brass. Goldplated or silver was out of question. But it was fun to costumize my bari. I/we had to do job beacause the techs in Sweden or Denmark just wanted to install thier own pads and resonators.
Just a word of caution about "oversized resos". It is important when figuring the sizes to make sure that the key cup is perfectly centered over the tonehole. The tonehole impression in the pad is a good indicator how close it is to centered. Side to side is easy to correct. Front to back is much more difficult.
For us it took more time to install oversized resonators. We had check the keycups more than once. But most of the keycups were ok. Just two that needed extra work. "Off centered" and and they needed to be leveled as well. The pads a pretty firm. A more flexible pad is more tolerant?
 

John Setchell

Member
Messages
283
Locality
Norfolk UK
@John Setchell - not sure if this is any use to you, but stumbled across it yesterday...

Thanks David.
The sax seems to endlessly fascinate boffins. Conclusions seem to be lower notes (more closed holes) are enhanced.
We are also reprimanded for calling them “resonators”. They should be “reflectors”
Whatever…
 

DavidUK

Well-Known Member
Café Supporter
Messages
5,935
Locality
Near Lutterworth, Leics.
Seems odd once again that the material is supposed to make a difference. It may be a sax body "resonates" (hence some folks saying the material it's made of makes a difference) but resonators don't, they simply reflect the sound out. In which case why make the from different materials (as with Reso-Techs ones), and if they reflect, does that mean flat ones send the sound back into the sax body (naughty sound, get back in there!) so it has to come out the big trumpety hole at the end?
 

mizmar

Senior Member
Messages
1,008
Locality
Trondheim, Norway
does that mean flat ones send the sound back into the sax body
I'm not sure this is a good way to think about it. Sound waves don't bounce around inside the sax. Air molecules osscilate. They bounce on the walls and each other, ideally the walls are hard and the air molecules don't lose any energy. But pads are soft, a little porous even... "Resonators" make more of the pads "ideal", hard surfaces.
 

DavidUK

Well-Known Member
Café Supporter
Messages
5,935
Locality
Near Lutterworth, Leics.
So do both the inner walls of the sax, and the resonators, resonate or reflect? I think it should be "reflect" as I believe it makes no difference what metal either is made from.

Then again white reflects heat better than black so maybe it's the colour of the sax internals which could reflect sound differently too? A matt black inside could give a muffled sound whereas mirror polishing gives a bright sound? Discuss... or don't bother, it's Friday!
 

mizmar

Senior Member
Messages
1,008
Locality
Trondheim, Norway
Yes, reflect.
The colour is probably irrelevant, given thermal equilibrium...
 

thomsax

Well-Known Member
Messages
4,482
Locality
Sweden
Matt Stohrer about resonators.
View: https://youtu.be/1qUOC7mQbZk


I have oversized , more or less, Resotechs on all my Martin Committee saxes. I like them. Ithink ....

  • Oversized flat ResoTechs resonators gives my Martin a bigger tone. Martin saxes have thin pads and low keyheights so oversized resonators gives a more "modern sound". The sound is reflecting, A plain pad absorb more energy.
  • Gold, silver or brass, gives no plating problems.
  • A flat oversized resonator helps to keep the pad flat.
  • Are re-useable.
  • Less leather/skin is exposed so the pad last longer. Of course, it depens if you take good care of your pads.
A flat oversized Resotech reflector/resonator/tone booster in brass. Therer are other manufactors as well.
PICT0657.JPG
 

jbtsax

Well-Known Member
Café Supporter
Messages
8,788
Locality
Beautiful Springville, Utah USA
This is an excerpt from Benade's notes for his class: "Acoustical Evolution of Wind Instruments".

1631290021744.png

The "cutoff frequency" (fc) on most saxophones is in the vicinity of F#3. Soundwaves at frequencies above cutoff for the most part travel past the open toneholes and directly out the bell. This is why the use of a "donut mute" inside the bell reduces the upper harmonics producing a warmer/darker tone.

Soundwaves are "reflected" by any hard, smooth surface and "absorbed" or "attenuated" by any porous non-rigid material. The walls of a saxophone may "vibrate" very slightly, but such vibration is too weak to be heard and acoustic studies have found that on a reed blown instrument, for the wall vibrations to "couple with" or influence the soundwaves inside, the tube must be very thin (.2 mm) and slightly oval shaped.

The pressure anti nodes of a standing wave do "push" against the walls of the instrument, but in my understanding the rigid "tube" gives shape and length to the standing wave more than "reflection" from the walls.

The complete course notes can be downloaded at this link: Writings of Arthur H. Benade - 1970s
 

mizmar

Senior Member
Messages
1,008
Locality
Trondheim, Norway
"wave" as in "standing wave" is a description of the way amplitude/pressure changes along a tube or string; and how displacement changes at a point, over time.
the rigid "tube" gives shape and length to the standing wave
Ultimately all a standing wave is is oscillating molecules with a periodic distribution (of density, kinetic energy etc) in time and space. It they lose energy to the walls, the period distribution will change.. so will sound different.
Sometimes the bulk model (eg sin waves) is useful, sometimes the microscopic point of view is better.
 
Last edited:

thomsax

Well-Known Member
Messages
4,482
Locality
Sweden
Vanity is also a part of my weakness for oversized ResoTechs. I feel good when I see a nice pad with oversized ResoTechs installed in a clean and straight keycup. I think jbtsax is suffering from this to? I have seen a nice Buescher sax with glued in white pads and the Snap-On system still there.
 

John Setchell

Member
Messages
283
Locality
Norfolk UK
Matt Stohrer about resonators.
View: https://youtu.be/1qUOC7mQbZk


I have oversized , more or less, Resotechs on all my Martin Committee saxes. I like them. Ithink ....

  • Oversized flat ResoTechs resonators gives my Martin a bigger tone. Martin saxes have thin pads and low keyheights so oversized resonators gives a more "modern sound". The sound is reflecting, A plain pad absorb more energy.
  • Gold, silver or brass, gives no plating problems.
  • A flat oversized resonator helps to keep the pad flat.
  • Are re-useable.
  • Less leather/skin is exposed so the pad last longer. Of course, it depens if you take good care of your pads.
A flat oversized Resotech reflector/resonator/tone booster in brass. Therer are other manufactors as well. View attachment 18958
Thinking outside-the-box I guess the ultimate pad/tone hole would, when closed be brass, radiused and flush with tube of the sax. Standing waves would then effortlessly be established and maintained.
- Or maybe that would be TOO perfect and characterless?
 

DavidUK

Well-Known Member
Café Supporter
Messages
5,935
Locality
Near Lutterworth, Leics.
I think standard metal resos are either stainless steel or aluminium. Why don't Resotech offer either of these? Is it just to be different?
Aluminium seems an obvious choice as it's strong and light. But then with such thin parts there's probably nothing in it.
 

jbtsax

Well-Known Member
Café Supporter
Messages
8,788
Locality
Beautiful Springville, Utah USA
Thinking outside-the-box I guess the ultimate pad/tone hole would, when closed be brass, radiused and flush with tube of the sax. Standing waves would then effortlessly be established and maintained.
- Or maybe that would be TOO perfect and characterless?
This was discussed in an earlier thread some time ago and this was my response: Saxophone Mythbusters

Tonehole "chimneys" have become an integral part of the acoustics of woodwind instruments. Below is an excerpt from Benade's "Fundamentals of Musical Acoustics" that describes how closed toneholes in a series affect the soundwaves inside the instrument. I own a "padless alto saxophone that consists of just a body tube with no holes. It plays effortlessly down to low Bb and is relatively easy to overblow harmonics on. Surprisingly the tone quality is nearly identical to a leak free alto saxophone with pads.

1631375738464.png
 

Members online

Popular Discussions

London
Paris
New York
Los Angeles
Sydney
Moscow
New Delhi
Top Bottom