Saxophones Sopranos- Curved & Straight.....

Jules

Formerly known as "nachoman"
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Ok- Curved vs straight soprano saxes- everyone’s got a view on this. Mr Thomas and a few others have flagged the difference that it's harder working the high notes on curved horns ( though my curved has a positively floor-shaking response at the bottom end.. I also have a 6 week old baby with similar traits!).
Now- I’ve been doing a bit of experimenting with this- by default the mouthpiece of my soprano fits into the gob at quite a steep angle &, for me at least, the response up on the palm keys seems to improve noticeably when the sax is tipped up. The tendency is to hold the body vertically- like an alto, but if it’s closer to 10 or 15 degrees- closer to the angle you’d hold a straight soprano- the consistency of tone seems to improve…. Or am I kidding myself.
So what this boils down to is – is the difference in response of a curved sop innate to the design of the sax or is it a product of the way it tends to be held….?
 

Mamos

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I must admit I don't find the curved sop as natural to hold as a straight one.

I enjoy playing my soprano but if I ever replace it it will probably be with a straight one

mamos
 

TomMapfumo

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I agree - it is my experience that with the neck I use on my curved soprano (basic BW set up) it sounds better withe the sax lifted up. I have not, as yet tried a more curvaceous neck, but may do at some point if I've run out of things to buy....

Kind regards
Tom

ps is this adverts blocking posts nonsense ever going to stop.......?
 
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jonf

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I also have a 6 week old baby with similar traits!.
….?
Hey, Jules, I didn't know you'd had another. Boy or girl? How's baby's big brother coping?

Back to sops, I have a curvy and a straight. To be honest, I've never noticed much of a difference based on the angle I hold them at. What I can say is that the curvy, a Bauhaus Walstein, has a crook design which encourages me to hold it less upright, more away from an alto angle and towards the straight sop playing position. The other thing is that I much prefer the curvy, even though my straight one is a well regarded vintage Buescher True Tone.

I've just got a Zoom H2, so I'll try recording myself on each of them and see how they sound away from the player.

Jon
 

Clivey

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LOL. I use a straight Sop with an angled neck which is a bit of a compromise. It allows a better angle than a completely straight Horn. so it`s a bit easier ergonomically.

On another Issue. I have a touch of arthritis developing in my right shoulder which is only a problem when i attempt Soprano for any amount of time.


Guess what? I`ve been thinking about going curvy ,but reckon The intonation probs would Nip my head.
 

rhysonsax

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My favourite soprano (out of 5) is the Yanagisawa SC991 - great intonation and pretty good ergonomics, except for the low C and D# touch pieces (for me).

Interestingly, when I tried the BW curved sop I found that it was almost identical to my SC991 (probably copied from it) except for the neck. The necks were interchangeable for fit, but the BW was significantly less curved. I wondered if it was just the same neck that the factory makes for their twin neck straight soprano.

To me the SC991 feels (and sounds) like a mini alto. It's also a bit easier to mic a curvie than a staright soprano.

Rhys
 

daveysaxboy

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Feel more at home on a straight soprano but with a curved neck.Had a few curved soprano's and blew lot's but the 1 that stood out for me was my Steve Goodson curved soprano,that had amazing ergonomics and a great free blowing feel and sound.They Rampone Cazzani curved soprano's look really nice.
 

Sue

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Curved for me every time. I love my baby SC992 - just like Rhys says a baby alto. I don't have too many problems with tuning and intonation but then again I only play it in a sax ensemble with the occasional clarinet so maybe easier to tune to those than non wind instruments?? I tried a few straight ones but just prefer the feel of the curvy - nothing to do with sound :LOL:
 

half diminished

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I've a Rampone & Cazzani R1 Jazz saxello. It's rather nice :)

I've no experience other than this one so won't pass comment on straight vs curved other than to say I don't recall seeing any of the top pros using curved.
 

Pete Thomas

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Ok- Curved vs straight soprano saxes- everyone’s got a view on this. Mr Thomas and a few others have flagged the difference that it's harder working the high notes on curved horns
I don't remember that. But I do prefer straight ones. I believe the angle from your mouth should be the same as the angle from an alto or tenor neck, ie very close to perpendicular to your face, maybe very slightly down.

It should not (IMO) be as pointing down as a clarinet embouchure.

This means that a curved neck means you don't have to either hold the sop out so straight (possible quite tiring) or else play with your head pointing down.
 

Saxlicker

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On the original question,
My heart says curved but for for more serious or extended playing sessions my head says straight.
I first owned a YSS 675 but yearned for a curved sop and traded for a Yan SC901.
It was more fun but I actually achieved more on the yamaha and I think the straight body contributed.

Mind you, my love affair with soprano has always been weak and is darn nearly dead now.
 

TomMapfumo

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Jason Yarde plays a curved soprano, and even holds it out like a straight one......or did at the Colston Hall in Bristol on 7th April, with the Spatial AKA Orchestra set up by Jerry Dammers (ex Specials), who arecurrently on tour. Fascinating stuff!

Kind regards
Tom
 
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Jules

Jules

Formerly known as "nachoman"
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Jason Yarde plays a curved soprano, and even holds it out like a straight one......or did at the Colston Hall in Bristol on 7th April, with the Spatial AKA Orchestra set up by Jerry Dammers (ex Specials), who arecurrently on tour. Fascinating stuff!

Kind regards
Tom
Brilliant band... saw 'em in brighton. some stunning soloists and a splendidly odd, theatrical style...
 

ilovebech

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As I have said elsewhere, the man who invented the sax ,only made straight ones, he should have known what he was doing.
 
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