Saxophones Time to upgrade my current saxophone!

zepper

New Member
Messages
7
Location
Finland
Hi!

I have now been playing for about year and a half and I think it would be a time for an upgrade now from my old (t)rusty Moscow Music. I have three options at the moment:

Yamaha YTS-23, recently fully re-padded and serviced. Comes with Selmer C80 mouthpiece. Asking price is 850€

Yamaha YTS-32, serviced about a year ago. No info about if it has been re-padded but seller says that the pads are fine. No idea what the mouthpiece is. Asking price is 1000€

Keilwerth Peter Ponzel Modell. Basic service has just been done (oiling the mechanism, oiling some pads). My concern is that it is has not been re-padded ever so the pads are original. I called the repairman and he said that the sax is very good and the pads should be fine expect for two or three bow and bell pads. Asking prices is 1000€.


I'm not able to test-play any of them since they are far away from my hometown. I'm really looking for a sax that would last a lifetime with me, but I really don't want to put anymore money into it since I play the sax just as a hobby. I have no specific genre I play so I just need a good all-around ax.

What do you think, which has the most reasonable price or would suite my needs?
 

JayeNM

Formerly JayePDX
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972
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New Mexico, US
As I replied on the other forum....there is really no contest here.

Both Yamhas are overpriced. But more than this....the Keilwerth is just a superior instrument in every way, period. Build. Response. Action. Tone.

The Yamas cannot hold a candle to the Ponzol JK.

And if the tech says the pads are gonna be good for a while, and there is no significant damage anywhere, the JK is actually
underpriced.
 

Nick Wyver

noisy
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My Keilwerth Shadow tenor is still on the original pads after 12 years and getting on for 1000 gigs.
Come to think of it, I believe my SX90 alto which doesn't gig anywhere near as much but is 19 years old still has the original pads.
Oh, pick the Keilwerth of course but I may be a bit biased. :)
 

spike

Old Indian
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That Ponzol is going to be at least 30 years old.
They don't come up very often, they are sought after and that is a low asking price.
I'm also a biased JK man. ;)

P.S. We don't know the market in Finland so one of those Yammys may be the best bet for your needs.
The Ponzol tenors had a modified bow and bell which made intonation a bit tricky down the bottom end.
Do you have a link to the Ponzol, I'd be interested if you could point me to some pictures of the instrument.
 
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jbtsax

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My concern with the Keilwerth is the original pads---some of which needed "oiling" o_O and bow or bell pads that need to be replaced. I can see a low Eb pad needing replacing, but bell key pads typically are the least worn when compared to palm key, side key, and stack pads. In the event the Keilwerth would require a repad a few years down the road to be as dependable as the YTS-23 it could come close to doubling the original cost. The OP's statement that he just plays as a "hobby" and just needs a "good all-around ax to me describes a YTS-23 with new pads to a "T".
 

spike

Old Indian
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I agree absolutely @jbtsax - my JK SX90 is 20 years old and the bow and bell pads are still perfect,
Palm key and top pads are looking pretty wrecked but they're still sealing 100%.
JK's are built like tanks. Last a lifetime and some.
 

MikeMorrell

Netherlands
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i don't know much about saxes. I've only ever bought one new tenor sax. At the time, I based my choice on just four criteria:
- price
- sound (volume, tone)
- fit
- playability

All of the saxes I tried out were either new or refurbished so they were all in 'good nick". The new ones (selmer) were way above my budget so I focused on the refurbished (vintage) ones.. One of them was a Keilwerth which had a great, full sound. But - for me, its 'fit' to my fingers and its playability were not ideal. So I eventually bought a Buffet Crampon which had less 'sound' than the Keilwerth but somehow just felt better (fit + playability). No regrets.

Keilwerth make great saxes and I'm sure you get used to its 'fit' and 'playability'. Yamaha is perhaps the safest option. From what I read, the YTS-32 is positioned as an 'intermediate' sax' whereas the YTS-23 is positioned as a beginner's sax.

FWIW. I had a couple of pads replaced recently. My repairer explained how the top 3-4 pads always need to be replaced first and the replacement was not expensive. Based on my experience, I wouldn't consider 'pad replacement' as a major factor in your buying decision.

Mike
 

JayeNM

Formerly JayePDX
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New Mexico, US
I personally don't see why 'bow or bell pads' needing replacing makes a horn particularly suspicious, I guess (????) A 20+ year old horn and those pads may need replacing...doesn't strike me as odd. Low Eb and C# are closed pads so they take a lotta moisture and it's common they'd start to go. Low C pad needing replacing after 25 years... not strange. Same with bellkey pads...I oftentimes change Bb/B even though they look fine, so it has nothing to do necessarily with those pads being 'worn'. I replace sometimes simply because they are leaking and refloating 'em doesn't do the trick...

Also, keep in mind, those are pretty quick and inexpensive pads to change, compared to say stack pads where changing would require more re-regulating.

I am assuming 'oiling' of pads probably means they have been treated with a topical pad product. Not sure if those semantics were OP's or tech's...buy you (OP) may wish to ask the tech about that.
 

thomsax

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3,479
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Sweden
If you want an "allround" (jazz, classic, big band,, rock...) sax the YTS 32 is good choice. And also the YTS 23. But I think the YTS 23's are pricey.
A Keilwerth with the wide bow is one of last saxes with own voice/tone/sound. A big tone and there is no limit. One of my sax heroes was on Keilwerth SX90 live/stage but in the studio he was on Selmer or Yamaha? I don't know if this is true?
 
OP
Z

zepper

New Member
Messages
7
Location
Finland
Hi and thank you all for your contribution, really appreciate it!

I think I will settle with the Keilwerth. It seem's to be the most intriguing one and has it's own sound. The repairman will have a one last look of it on Monday so let's see how that goes. I have agreed with the seller that if the sax is not something I'm looking for, I will send it back and get the money back, so it's a kind of a safe deal for me. Of course since we are 500km apart from each other, the sax will be sent using a local courier, so that is a concern to me (but so it is with those other two saxes).

I have also a chance of buying Selmer Jazz F mouthpiece, can you recommend this? Price would be 200€.

And by oiling the pads, I think the repairman used some topical pad product, just like JayeNM suspected, I might've used a wrong term here.
 
OP
Z

zepper

New Member
Messages
7
Location
Finland
That Ponzol is going to be at least 30 years old.
They don't come up very often, they are sought after and that is a low asking price.
I'm also a biased JK man. ;)

P.S. We don't know the market in Finland so one of those Yammys may be the best bet for your needs.
The Ponzol tenors had a modified bow and bell which made intonation a bit tricky down the bottom end.
Do you have a link to the Ponzol, I'd be interested if you could point me to some pictures of the instrument.
Hi!

I have only some pictures that the seller sent me. Trying to attach them here!
keilwerth_tenor.jpg
 

DavidUK

Well-Known Member
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4,363
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Near Lutterworth, Leics.
Keilwerth could be more interesting and a better value but bear in mind our esteemed @Stephen Howard favoured a YTS-23 for 25 years over any other horn that crossed his bench: Yamaha YTS23 tenor sax review

The 32 is, if I recall correctly, a YTS-62 without the annealed bell and fancy engraving. To buy one of the three "safely" at such a distance I could only recommend the Yamahas, and the 32 seems the better deal. Those who have owned the JKPP may rave about them but there are more Yamaha owners out there just as happy with their choice.

My only JK experience is with a Buffet Expression stencil which was different to Yamahas I've owned so hopefully that difference will be one you like but if not return it quickly or keep it a while and decide later. Sounds like you won't lose money on it at resale whereas you might on the overpriced 23.
 

spike

Old Indian
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I have only some pictures that the seller sent me.
Wow that does look like it's in good condition. It has to be knocking on 30 years old and it doesn't look like it's been played very much.
JK's can feel a bit clunky if you've never played one before. You'll get used to it very quickly.
When I play a " fast action " horn these days I trip over my fingers, Selmers and Yamahas feel like kids toys to me.
The neck in the photo looks a different colour to the rest of the horn. Is it the original neck?
If it's as good as it looks it's a bargain. If you don't like it PM me. :)
 
OP
Z

zepper

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7
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Finland
Well, didn't get the Keilwerth... the seller changed his mind. A bit of a bummer but very understandable. Now, YTS-23 price reduced to 800€ and YTS-32 seller is sticking with the 1000€. Are there big differences with the playability on these? Is the 200€ more for the YTS-32 worth it?
 

jbtsax

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I would pass on the Selmer Jazz F mouthpiece. I may be wrong, but I believe this is like the Selmer D "classical" mouthpiece with a much wider tip opening. There are better jazz tenor mouthpieces that are more reasonably priced.
 

jonf

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Betelgeuse
Well, didn't get the Keilwerth... the seller changed his mind. A bit of a bummer but very understandable. Now, YTS-23 price reduced to 800€ and YTS-32 seller is sticking with the 1000€. Are there big differences with the playability on these? Is the 200€ more for the YTS-32 worth it?
I wouldn't pay 200 Euros more for a YTS32 over a YTS23. I think they are both a bit expensive but that may be your local market. I think the YTS23 is a great sax and ignore anyone who tells you it's a student model, it's just a good sax. I'd also be very wary about buying a Keilwerth without play testing it. Although lots of people like them for thier big strong tone, they do also have a patchy reputation for quality control. Read Stephen Howard's site for more information. Maybe there's a reason why it looks like it hasn't been played much? So don't be too disappointed about missing out on it.
 

sizzzzler

Member
Messages
147
Location
London
Becasue you’ve been playing for 18 months, buy new the YTS62 or TWO1. Both are decent saxes, although not true professional instruments, they are good enough to get out of the way up to grade 7 or 8.
I would advise against secondhand. Saxophones are complex machinery that need to be handled gently. A well serviced example second hand can quickly lose its edge in a few months and reveal underlying issues.
 
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