SYOS

Saxophones Solid silver saxophone

StockholmSax

New Member
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20
I'm looking for a new tenor and up to now the yanagisawa Tw02 is the best I have ever played.
So I almost pulled the trigger but now I have the chance to buy a second hand yanagisawa 9930 in good condition. I have not played the 9930 and would probably have to buy without playing first.
Both Saxes are around the same price. Resale value of the Tw02 would be a lot less as it is brand new.
Anyway, opinions on solid silver saxophones?
Which sax would you go for?
 

Stephen Howard

Well-Known Member
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1,827
The horn being made with a silver body tube will have no impact on the sound - but being an expensive material it means that it's typically used on instruments that have been built with better care...hence are likely to sound better.
The 9930 had a much broader soundstage than the TWO1/2 and is tonally more complex. It's a very nice horn.
If you're not particularly set on a new horn, and the 9930 is is good condition - I'd be inclined to go for it.
And if it fails to please for any reason, you should be able to sell it on for what you paid for it and get a TWO2.

Once caveat though. It won't feel and play exactly like the TWO2 - and it isn't always the case that a player prefers the tone of an expensive horn over a much cheaper one.
 

Pete Thomas

Chief of Stuff
Commercial Café Supporter
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13,482
It’s likely to be quite a bit heavier. I tried a 9930 baritone and loved it.

I would also go for the 9930 if I had that choice
 
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StockholmSax

StockholmSax

New Member
Messages
20
Why is everyone recomending the 9930 if silver has no bearing on the sound?
I am sure the build quality on the Tw02 is just as good, naw?
Is it not just a prestige thing owning a silver sax?
Would like to do a A to B test just out of interest.
Is Silver not a poorer metal choice being that bit softer? That bit heavier?
Not trying to be controversial just looking for advice.
 

Pete Thomas

Chief of Stuff
Commercial Café Supporter
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13,482
Why is everyone recomending the 9930 if silver has no bearing on the sound?
By everybody, yes it is two people out of two so unanimous! :)

I wasn't actually recommending, just saying what I'd buy all things being what they are (untested, used being better value than new). I am not in the postion of being able to try either, so a real recommendation would be based on playing them and then recommending one based on what I then think.

My recommendation is also based a bit on really liking the 9930 baritone.
I am sure the build quality on the Tw02 is just as good, naw?
Could be, they are very consistently well built in my experience.
Is it not just a prestige thing owning a silver sax?
That's possible. Solid Silver ...."ooooh!"
Would like to do a A to B test just out of interest.
This would be ideal. I doubt it wouldshed any light on whether the silver has any bearing on the sound though. They bare different instruments.
Is Silver not a poorer metal choice being that bit softer? That bit heavier?
I had a silver bell Rampone, softness was not an issue. Might even be a plus as perhaps its easier to get rid of dents. Also I think they are Sterling, ie 92.5% silver as opposed to pure silver which is much softer.

Yes, definitely heavier, Stephen pointed out by about 500 grams. It's all down to whether or not that is an issue for you. Didn't matter for me as (a) I play baritone as well and (b) I use a saxholder. Having to lug it around that extra half a kilo might make a difference.
 

Colin the Bear

Well-Known Member
Messages
12,801
A solid silver anything is very stealable. Security and insurance need to be considered. Paranoia at gigs and practice sessions.
 

Stephen Howard

Well-Known Member
Messages
1,827
Why is everyone recomending the 9930 if silver has no bearing on the sound?
I am sure the build quality on the Tw02 is just as good, naw?
Is it not just a prestige thing owning a silver sax?
Would like to do a A to B test just out of interest.
Is Silver not a poorer metal choice being that bit softer? That bit heavier?
Not trying to be controversial just looking for advice.
Because it's a nice horn.
The build quality on the TWO2 will be good - but the 9930 will be just that little bit better (though you have to offset the wear and tear on it). And, if you like the horn, you may never want to buy another....mainly 'cos anything better will cost as much as a small car.

There are pros and cons with softer metals, and pros and cons with silver vs. brass - but in the great scheme of things it's nothing to worry about from your perspective.

And yeah, the prestige is strong in this horn.

But perhaps it would be more helpful if you were able to describe what it is you'd be looking from a different tenor.
Brighter? Louder? Darker? Faster etc.?
 
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StockholmSax

StockholmSax

New Member
Messages
20
Thanks for your answers everyone, much appreciated.
Stephen there is no real reason why I'm buying another sax. I kind of like buying, playing and selling on. Hopefully not at a big loss.
 

MMM

Senior Member
Messages
855
I tried the WO brass tenor (cannot remember the number but I think an 01, they had just started stocking them so they didn't have the full Yani range!) and both solid silver 99xx models: silver throughout and the SS neck and bell with bronze body (fully engraved!)at sax.co.uk in London maybe a couple of years ago: they are very different saxes soundwise (although I found little difference in the sound between the two 99xx models) .

I recommend trying them both because Yanagisawa made some changes to the bore of the WO series and I found it spoke better (particularly in the high range) than the older T880/T990 (which to me sounded the same: I have been playing a T880 for a number of years so that was my baseline).

Like the others suggested, if weight is not an issue for you (it is for me) I would go for the SS model, aside from the sound (which I found full, fatter and to me louder than the WO or the 99x) the engraving is a work of art, a really stunning sax.
The above were my impressions only, gathered after 2ish hours comparing the different models (for the delight of the ever so patient staff at sax.co!) and I'm not a pro player, so take that as you wish.
 

GJ77

Senior Member
Messages
700
I’ve only played one 993, which I found to be a bit less mild mannered than the standard Yanis id played up until then. For me, this was a great thing as they’re a brand that I really like and respect, but had always found them to be lacking a bit of bite.
I already had my dream tenor and therefore wasn’t in the market, but remember thinking that if I ever lost my VI for any reason, they’d be on my shortlist
 

tzadik

Member
Messages
346
Once I tried a T9930 and I was quite disappointed with the sound.
I mean... I like more the T990/991 and the T992 (despite the last T992 I've tried was kind of... pitched at 438 Hz).

You feel the weight of the silver on your neck...

Silver is not as "cold workable" as brass. It's not pure silver they add copper to improve the workability.
It's more expensive of the brass and bronze... and takes more care so to be manufactured.
Silver horns feature a thicker sheet of metal (to have some "stability" back).
Different material and different thickness of the sheet have an influence on how the tone holes end up, after being drawn out... and this has an actual influence on how the horn play.
The bore is different but there other details to consider.



Yanagisawa, in particular, still pointed out that "thickness thing" back in the 70's/80's.
If you check the old catalogues... the x500 and the x800 were "thin wall" saxophones while the x880 were "thick wall" saxophones.
My idea is that, in a strange way, they tried to match of the Mark 7s, which was "heavier" than the previous Mark VI.

Another important thing to note: Yamaha and Yanagisawa made different horns for different targets.
And probabily japanese manufacturers have the idea that... light instrument = student instrument, heavy instrument = pro instrument.
Think that Nikkan/Yamaha always had three series of instruments.

Selmer, before the Series III, only had have one model in production (Mark VI, Mark VI/Mark 7 transition in the second half of 70's, Series I, Series II... and then the Series III came out but not to replace the Series II).
 
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