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M/Pieces - Ligs Mouthpiece Comparison Request

Which of these mouthpieces has the best sound?

  • 1

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • 2

    Votes: 1 12.5%
  • 3

    Votes: 5 62.5%
  • 4

    Votes: 1 12.5%
  • 5 (Hint: there is no 5)

    Votes: 1 12.5%

  • Total voters
    8

randulo

playing 2 years
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Messages
3,242
Today, I set up to compare four mouthpieces. I won't name them yet, but ask that you comment on how they sound, which sounds best to you, etc.
I'm unable to play the same thing the same way twice, but I did my best on this intro phrase. I recorded it with the music, then soloed each take. It's lossless format, so it has to be dowloaded. The file is about 5 megs, if you're on a 2400 baud phone line, don't even consider it. :) (Although that would only take about 5 minutes to download.)
I've recently been playing Vandoren Blue 2 reeds. Each take here is with the same reed, the same ligature and the same placement. I stood in the same place at the same distance from the mic.


#1 Yam 4C
#2 Vandoren V16
#3 PPT
#4 Syos 3D
MPC Test.png
 
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OP
randulo

randulo

playing 2 years
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Messages
3,242
The works computer says no. Well actually it says Gateway timeout
Thanks for trying; I can get it here from an anonymous window, so it's definitely available and shared. Note, it won't play in the player, it must be downloaded unless you have an extension installed.
 

Pete Effamy

Senior Member
Messages
1,466
They sound really similar Randy, they could almost be the same mouthpiece with a very slightly different treatment in the DAW.
1 and 3 sound slightly rounder.
2 sounds a bit more open or direct in tone, but is it a closer tip? Sounds like you almost close it up a couple of times.
4... my guess is that this is a wider tip/chamber because of the scoop on the last note which I presume you didn't mean to play, so the reason would be a likely bigger tip and it took a little more to control it???

You sound the same really. It would be interesting to hear them in the mix with a bit of treatment to see if they make or less difference with the track - my feeling is even less. But I'm gonna go for 3 as you sound most comfortable on that take.
 
OP
randulo

randulo

playing 2 years
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Messages
3,242
But I'm gonna go for 3 as you sound most comfortable on that take.
Yeah, unfortunately, I'm not competent enough to actually play it the same each time! I'll have to rationalise that as a Good Thing™. But I agree, they sound very similar to me, too. I suppose a better test would be to play one note with zero articulation, but that's no fun!
Interesting point about the scoop. I listened to that note on the four now, and the scoop is only on that #4. I'm not sure if it was just expression on my part or an intonation correction.
#2, yes I should have done that better. Not sure if it's closing or it was simply my articulation.

Two other factors, the order of recording and the order of acquisition may be in play. (I'll mention them in a later post.) Also, I have only been play 2 strength for a week or so. I'm still not sure which I like better, 2 or 2.5. I've even played some 2.5 ZZ and liked that.
 

nigeld

I don't need another mouthpiece; but . . .
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5,163
I couldn't hear a big difference. I went for 4 because it seemed to have more character.
 
OP
randulo

randulo

playing 2 years
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Messages
3,242
I couldn't hear a big difference. I went for 4 because it seemed to have more character.
These mouthpieces are very different from each other, but one has been my main one for over a year. Another interesting thing about both comments so far is that they tend to confirm the common belief.

It ain't the mouthpiece that makes the sound!


So, every day I say to my mouthpieces, "It's not you, it's me".
 
OP
randulo

randulo

playing 2 years
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Messages
3,242
It would be interesting to hear them in the mix with a bit of treatment to see if they make or less difference with the track - my feeling is even less.
I agree. This is a little verb, a little limiting and the basic default alto EQ. I generally use my own EQ for a softer sound in the highs.


The last note is way out of tune in #2, I now notice. The thing about changing mpc rapidly is that it's hard to get the tuning exactly right, so there's inevitable (for me, anyway) compensation.

#1 Yam 4C
#2 Vandoren V16
#3 PPT
#4 Syos 3D
 
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Pete Effamy

Senior Member
Messages
1,466
I think you need to play on each mouthpiece for at least 15mins, then record it. If you are going to play slightly differently on each 'piece in order to exploit something you hear, it will take a little while. Yes, you need to decide on the last note of the intro being the tonic or the 9th.

More differences (if they are there) should make themselves known at different dynamics too, so to be really 'scientific':

1 play each 'piece for 15mins before recording
2 record the line at p, mf and f.

Oh, and probably more prominant in the upper middle register too.
 
OP
randulo

randulo

playing 2 years
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Messages
3,242
Yes, nothing very scientific about what I've done here. Indeed your point is well-taken, but then another factor would set in, fatigue after the first 3, for example. Can't rest or do each on a different day. I am encouraged by the idea that they mostly sound the same. I'll show the identities tomorrow.
 

Pete Effamy

Senior Member
Messages
1,466
Yes, nothing very scientific about what I've done here. Indeed your point is well-taken, but then another factor would set in, fatigue after the first 3, for example. Can't rest or do each on a different day. I am encouraged by the idea that they mostly sound the same. I'll show the identities tomorrow.
Yes, the only reason that I suggest a more involved process is that they are so similar, and you seem to want a definitive answer. I'd just go for the most comfortable to play - so long as there are no anomalies when you change register.
 

DavidUK

Well-Known Member
Messages
4,400
Is No.3 the most expensive? Sounds though you may be able to manipulate the sound with it.
1 = stuffy, as though the reed was going to close up.
2 = struggling to get notes out, one missed.
3 = clear tone, little bit of controlled warble (nice), clear notes. The best.
4 = flexible, but might get out of control.
 
OP
randulo

randulo

playing 2 years
Subscriber
Messages
3,242
Is No.3 the most expensive? Sounds though you may be able to manipulate the sound with it.
1 = stuffy, as though the reed was going to close up.
Very interesting reflections, David! On this particular one (stuffy), I noticed this and it may be due to playing a 2. I'll need to do a new test with new 2.5 reeds tomorrow. The whole reason I wasn't playing 2 was that they closed up sometimes, when I first tried them some months ago. I think I'm "overwhelming" them, either with air or embouchure pressure.

#1 Yam 4C
#2 Vandoren V16
#3 PPT
#4 Syos 3D
MPC Test Anon.png
 
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OP
randulo

randulo

playing 2 years
Subscriber
Messages
3,242
I learned that trick in the service when we had to get up and make the bed so a quarter boinces off of the blanket in 5 minutes.
 

saxyjt

I have saxophone withdrawal symptoms
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3,498
Can't tell the difference in such a short sample. That's why I voted 5!

I just thought #2 sounded more interesting than #1, then I couldn't say...
 
Saxholder Pro

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