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Saxophones New Design?

SeeTenner

New Member
Messages
1
Hey everybody,
Hope your new year is off to a great start. I'm designing a new sax and I could use some input. As a jazz-funk-prog-metal-fusion player, I've decided on a fully modern C-tenor. Low-A, handmade of german silver with brass mechanism. Options are straight, curved or paperclip and various plating is possible. May spew fire or acid. This is a labor of love, so I intend to get the price well under $4000 (cross fingers). There is alot of work to get done, so all I'm asking now is this; how many people would get excited and at least consider buying such a thing if the horn meets quality? Thanks and best wishes!
 

Nick Wyver

noisy
Subscriber
Messages
5,950
When you say you're designing a new sax do you mean in a Jim Schmidt sort of way or a conventional one in C? Why low A? I can see its use in a bari where it's a low C but I can't see why you'd particularly want a low A on a C tenor.
 

rhysonsax

Well-Known Member
Messages
4,375
Hey everybody,
Hope your new year is off to a great start. I'm designing a new sax and I could use some input. As a jazz-funk-prog-metal-fusion player, I've decided on a fully modern C-tenor. Low-A, handmade of german silver with brass mechanism. Options are straight, curved or paperclip and various plating is possible. May spew fire or acid. This is a labor of love, so I intend to get the price well under $4000 (cross fingers). There is alot of work to get done, so all I'm asking now is this; how many people would get excited and at least consider buying such a thing if the horn meets quality? Thanks and best wishes!
I'm always excited about new saxes and wish you well. A couple of questions:

1. What do you mean by the options of "straight, curved or paperclip" (I know that C melody saxes can come with alto or tenor style necks, but this seems to mean something different) ?
2. Do you see this as a business proposition (i.e. a way to make profit) or as a labour of love ?

I have low A on my bass, baritone and alto but I'm not sure many people would be interested in a low A on the C tenor. I suppose it would give you a fairly useful note for the popular guitar key of concert A, but most of the time I find I am playing in the middle and upper ranges of the tenor rather than down the bottom end. It would differentiate your sax from others, but it costs money and adds weight - it's certainly not something that sax players will have high on their priority list of features.

There is now a modern C-tenor available (Aquilasax) and it is said to be pretty good. It is also priced very much below the figure you mention, so I am not convinced there will be a big market for an unusual sax like the one you have in mind.

Rhys
 

Morgan Fry

Senior Member
Messages
447
Why not Bb? If not Bb, why C? If it's for guitar based music, build an A or B tenor or E bari.
 

griff136

Well-Known Member
Messages
1,048
The Aquilasax Rhys Mentions is a nice C-mel Ive played a few ans was very surpride how free blowing and non stuffy they were.
 

milandro

Well-Known Member
Messages
2,483
the demand for C melodies is there but it is a very limited one and I doubt that it would have been possible to revive this saxophone (as Aquilasax did) if the price level would have been as high as 4000$.

Besides, why complicating things so much by wanting to do a paperclip model (to make a c shorter? they are not that long) or a straight version (straight altos and tenors, let alone the baritones, are an oddity that never ever took commercially off and that only make some sense for the performing artist to attract some extra attention on himself while performing on a podium ). I think that you might be thinking of the Conn-o-sax when thinking to such a horn , its sad story (although there are periodically people who say they will be interested in a F saxophone extending to high G and to low A) is a great way to explain that no matter how nice and innovative any product is it will only be sold (outside of the novelty purchaser) if it fulfils a purpose.

Now, are there many people wanting to buy a C melody? Not that many at 1000$ and even less at 4000$! Are there many people who would want to buy a 4 times more expensive C melody if this would extend to low A and high G? I don't think so.

Anyway there is a niche market in every market and you might fulfil it, after all hand made horns tend to be made in very small amounts.
 
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Pete Thomas

Chief of Stuff
Commercial Supporter
Messages
13,979
Why not Bb? If not Bb, why C? If it's for guitar based music, build an A or B tenor or E bari.
This is an interesting. I was also thinking an Ab or even G tenor would be good. The problem for me with C melodies is they are sort of half way house, they don't have that gutsy boot of a tenor, or the singing quality of an alto. But slightly bigger lower tenor, now that would be fun.

Of course, if you want sheet music or band parts in those keys you're stuffed.
 

Nick Wyver

noisy
Subscriber
Messages
5,950
This is an interesting. I was also thinking an Ab or even G tenor would be good. The problem for me with C melodies is they are sort of half way house, they don't have that gutsy boot of a tenor, or the singing quality of an alto. But slightly bigger lower tenor, now that would be fun.

Of course, if you want sheet music or band parts in those keys you're stuffed.
Ooh! A G tenor! Can I have one too? That's a great idea. I don't care about a bit of transposition. Be nice not to have to play in F# and C# all the bleedin' time.
 

milandro

Well-Known Member
Messages
2,483
so, as you can see, the only saxophone that everybody wants is something that can transpose in any key and with a 5 octave extension , I think it is called a Yamaha WX5 but it sounds.............as it sounds.......
 

rhysonsax

Well-Known Member
Messages
4,375
Ooh! A G tenor! Can I have one too? That's a great idea. I don't care about a bit of transposition. Be nice not to have to play in F# and C# all the bleedin' time.
Wouldn't an A tenor be better then one in G for those pesky guitar keys ?

Concert E (4 sharps) = F# (6 sharps) on Bb tenor = A (3 sharps) on G tenor = G (1 sharp) on A tenor [and also C# (7 sharps) on Eb alto & bari]

Concert A (3 sharps) = B (5 sharps) on Bb tenor = D (2 sharps) on G tenor = C (no sharps) on A tenor [and also F# (6 sharps) on Eb alto & bari]

I think that an A tenor would be preferable to a G tenor as you would be playing in "easier" keys for a lot of rock and pop tunes. It would also be closer acoustically to a Bb tenor, which might make a difference for mouthpieces, reeds etc.

But a G tenor would make a nice companion for Peter Jessen's G mezzo soprano http://gottfried.dk/information/peter-12/

Rhys
 
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Morgan Fry

Senior Member
Messages
447
Yeah, there seem to be some advantages to an A over a G. The biggest is the mouthpiece/ reed thing. OTOH, a G would have a more different sound, in a way that might lay well for the idiom (in the way that the sound of a C sax lays well for nothing). Now that Pete mentions it, I think I'm liking the G idea better, because of the noticeably different sound. Yeah, there's two more sharps to everything, but you'll pretty much never use that last sharp anyway ;). Sure, somebody will have to make a mouthpiece for it, maybe reeds too.
 
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