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Saxophones Phil Barone Tenor -Classic or Vintage?

drrob7

Member
Messages
46
Hi

After reading all the nice things people have to say about them on the forums and sites, and listening to clips, I'm thinking of ordering a Phil Barone tenor.

I can't try them out because I'm in NZ (much as I'd love a trip to New York) so I'm going to have to just take the plunge.

My dilemma is do I get a Classic or Vintage? I've read that the Classic has more focus and the Vintage more 'spread' but what does that mean in practical terms? Which would suit my needs more? I play in a concert band but love the blues, rock and soul. Also I have small hands so ergos are important.

Any advice, thoughts, will be gratefully appreciated.
 

aldevis

Surrealist Contributor.
Cafe Moderator
Messages
12,125
I am afraid it is not a common horn over here (most of the members live the Old Continent). Are you sure it would be a leap from your current Moriartry?
 

drrob7

Member
Messages
46
My PM is an alto. I tried playing a tenor for the first time earlier this year and fell for it hard. Therefore I need one of my own to love.
 

Pete Thomas

Chief of Stuff
Commercial Supporter
Messages
13,957
Hi

After reading all the nice things people have to say about them on the forums and sites, and listening to clips, I'm thinking of ordering a Phil Barone tenor.


Any advice, thoughts, will be gratefully appreciated.
Sadly it was established that many of the glowing reviews were from shills. My advice would be to buy something that you have played or based on reliable reviews.
 

Fraser Jarvis

Well-Known Member
Messages
1,910
Sadly it was established that many of the glowing reviews were from shills. My advice would be to by something that you have played.
I remember doing a bit of a review when i got mine, i am not/was not one of the many Aussie shills Pete mentions above, [ADMIN EDIT - speculation or incorrect information removed]
I bought a vintage tenor and found it to be very very good indeed and thought it was the best thing since sliced bread....until the Selmer came along that was! As for the transaction, well that was a different matter, despite being told the sax was in stock i ended up waiting about 7 weeks for delivery, he was obviously getting fed up with me e-mailing him for updates and ignored most of them....then i got the ill health BS, basically he was just plain rude......with hindsight I'd probably go for something like a System 54 or a Bauhaus walstein.
 

Fraser Jarvis

Well-Known Member
Messages
1,910
I've read that the Classic has more focus and the Vintage more 'spread' but what does that mean in practical terms?
The classic is said to be more like a Selmer, the Vintage more like an old conn, so bearing that in mind the classic would probably suit you better....i remember the bottom Bb being a bit of a stretch on my vintage so if you have small hands as you say maybe not a good idea, cant comment on the classic ergos as i've not tried one.
 
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Andante cantabile

Senior Member
Messages
695
I also have a PB vintage tenor. I gave my impressions on it on SOTW, and I am most definitely not a shill.

I can't imagine that you would be unhappy with a PB vintage, but it is difficult to predict what your reaction might be.

When I bought in 2010 I definitely preferred the sound of it to my 82z. Now that i have mouthpiece I like I don't think there is all that much difference in the sound. I should have experimented with mouthpieces. It would have been much cheaper.

BTW, there are lots of good reviews of the Viking and BW saxophones. I am convinced that they all were written by genuine players.
 

Pete Thomas

Chief of Stuff
Commercial Supporter
Messages
13,957
I remember doing a bit of a review when i got mine, i am not/was not one of the many Aussie shills Pete mentions above, [ADMIN EDIT - speculation or incorrect information removed]
The shills that were exposed were not just Australian.

NB: Just in case there is a misunderstanding I did not mean to imply that Fraser is/was a shill. I also do not want this thread to get into a discussion of what did and didn't happen on SOTW, or make any judgments. I merely want to provide the information that this happened in order that people here are informed as accurately as possible and not subject to the same kind of practice that happened there. Once it was established beyond doubt that it was going on the issue was dealt with by the admin there who are just as concerned as I am that members of the forum are not mislead by fake reviews.
 

TomMapfumo

Well-Known Member
Messages
5,219
You could always PM Koumou who plays Barone saxes on Alto and Tenor and seems pretty happy with them.

I'd also endorse the Bauhaus Walstein and System 54 recommendations above - both superb!
 
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koumou

Member
Messages
168
Yes indeed, I do play a PB vintage alto and tenor and I am very pleased with them. About a year ago a friend from Holland who plays professionally dropped her BA Selmer alto, so she borrowed mine for a week. She really liked it and she played through her appearances with no problems. Having heard her play both her BA Selmer and my Vintage, mine sounded a little darker and more spread. I play mine with a Phil-Tone Meyer or a Selmer Soloist and the sound I produce is very near that of Art Pepper. Recently I tore the pad on my tenor's low C. As there's no Repairman where I live, I sent my tenor to Athens. The technician who did the repair is very well respected for his skills and sax playing, and works for the importers of Selmer. I spoke to him on the phone and he sounded very positive about my Barone. He said it felt good in the hands, the construction and mechs were of good quality and produced a very nice sound. In all I am very pleased with my saxes. On the other hand there are several saxes with similar characteristics which are marketed under different Brand names. System 54, Bauhaus Walstein M2 and Thoman Custom Line http://www.thomann.de/gr/thomann_custom_line_tlb_rot_patiniert.htm are a few that come to mind. Some people will argue that just because they look the same it does not mean they are the same. Yes it could be so, but then again a lot of them are made in the same Taiwanese factory and only differ between them in minor details.

Now as far as Mr. Barone is concerned, he's a very outspoken fellow, and as a result he can get on the wrong side of some people. Personally I had no problems in my dealings with him. A thing you ought to take into account, is that he despatches the saxes as they arrive from the factory, so a proper setup might be needed.

(ADMIN EDIT: Paragraph removed. As mentioned above, we do not want to get into a discussion of what did and didn't happen on SOTW, or their moderation decisions. This was mentioned purely to protect our members from being mislead)
 

koumou

Member
Messages
168
Hello Tom, received my Equinox, it is truly a very good match for my tenor and plays beutifully.
 

Pete Thomas

Chief of Stuff
Commercial Supporter
Messages
13,957
On the other hand there are several saxes with similar characteristics which are marketed under different Brand names. System 54, Bauhaus Walstein M2 and Thoman Custom Line http://www.thomann.de/gr/thomann_custom_line_tlb_rot_patiniert.htm are a few that come to mind. Some people will argue that just because they look the same it does not mean they are the same. Yes it could be so, but then again a lot of them are made in the same Taiwanese factory and only differ between them in minor details.
I would argue that any cosmetic similarities may not mean anything. I have test played probably every taiwanese saxophone, branded and although they can look extremely similar, identical even, there can also be a big difference in playing, sound quality. However we may never know so there may always be speculation. I do know that there are mediocre, good and very very good instruments from Taiwan.
Now as far as Mr. Barone is concerned, he's a very outspoken fellow, and as a result he can get on the wrong side of some people. Personally I had no problems in my dealings with him. A thing you ought to take into account, is that he despatches the saxes as they arrive from the factory, so a proper setup might be needed.
This is crucial. I would not be concerned about that, if it is the case. Not only are you likely to have to pay extra for a setup compared with a company such as BW who employ a professional tech to check and adjust every instrument before sending out, but it's possible that a defective instrument would get sent out to the customer. Even with a good return policy (and I can't comment on what that is in the case of Barones), that situation ends up a headache often with the customer paying shipping and subsequently waiting a long time for a replacement or refund.
 

Fraser Jarvis

Well-Known Member
Messages
1,910
The shills that were exposed were not just Australian.
No but i think you'll agree the majority were....
NB: Just in case there is a misunderstanding I did not mean to imply that Fraser is/was a shill
Ha ha, no i wasn't, but i wonder how much i would have been paid to be one???
I do know that there are mediocre, good and very very good instruments from Taiwan
Are you able to able to name them, i think we would all agree P Mauriat are very good....
 
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