SYOS

Saxophones Vintage sax

Tommy Ng

Member
Messages
583
Location
South Yorkshire
Hi

I am thinking to get a sax to replace my £150 Jupiter 500. Been looking at ebay and found a few vintage saxes. Some are not expensive for example a 1950 Martin is selling at about £900. A new YTS275 is asking for over £1K. :confused:

I am aware that there are problems associated with vintage saxes such as ergonomic and uneven tone.

In general, how's 1950 Martin in terms of intonation, built quality, etc...

Many thanks

tommy :thankyou:
 

kevgermany

ex Landrover Nut
Subscriber
Messages
22,004
Location
Just north of Munich
I'd love a Martin.... An Indian Head went recently on Ebay Germany, but was too expensive for me (at least if I want to remain married). But budget for some repairs to get it playing properly.... Take a read of Stephen Howard's reviews, and artcle on buying vintage.

But I'm biased, I usually reckon stuff from the 50s and earlier is better made than modern stuff. In other words, if it's older than me, it's worth having....
 

Lupifaro

Member
Messages
199
Location
Wales
I'd love a Martin.... An Indian Head went recently on Ebay Germany, but was too expensive for me (at least if I want to remain married). But budget for some repairs to get it playing properly.... Take a read of Stephen Howard's reviews, and artcle on buying vintage.

But I'm biased, I usually reckon stuff from the 50s and earlier is better made than modern stuff. In other words, if it's older than me, it's worth having....
There is a Martin Indiana ( Indian Head) at Allegro-Oxford just under £900 Screamin Wind has a vintage Buescher for sale. The ebay Martin looks tempting at £900 it could be stonker.;}
 

Phil Edwards

Senior Member
Messages
1,335
Location
East Sussex
Ohhh, I'm totally biased as huge fan of Martin's - they're all I've ever played and currently own 2 alto's. Of those I find the later one ('60s Medalist) to be more free blowing and a little brighter than the earlier one ('36 Handcraft Committee).

Personally I've never found ergonomics a problem on old instruments, but then again that's all I'm used to. Having said that, when I do ocassionally play new instruments I don't find them any better though!

Are you close enough to the seller on ebay to go and have a look?
 
OP
Tommy Ng

Tommy Ng

Member
Messages
583
Location
South Yorkshire
I live in Donny which is quite far from those ebay sellers.

How about woodwind exchange in Bradford? They should have a large stock of vintage saxes.
 

thomsax

Well-Known Member
Messages
3,438
Location
Sweden
I like Martin saxes a lot. Nice saxes. But there are other older saxes that are good as well.

The Martin Tenor 1950: Looks like the tube is bent? Don't have to be, it can just be the pict.

Olds Ambassador 1950: This is not a Comm III based sax! There is a big differnce between a The Martin and a Olds Ambassdor made by Martin. They are not bad, but I think £ 900.00 for a Olds stencil horn is too much!!

Take a look at Pete Thomas The Martin Tenor. A Committee III horn. You get that horn cheaper than the Olds sax!! Beside Stephen Horward has done the maintance and repair on the sax.

Thomas
 

SteveK

Member
Messages
149
Location
Guildford, Surrey
I've had both Tenor and Alto Selmer MKVI's in the past and the tone was fantastic - they were both always well maintained and I had many years of joy from them.
I now play modern instruments (Yanigasawa's) - is the tone as good as the MKVI's - probably not, but with the right mouthpiece/reed combination I can come close to the very same result. However the advantages that I find from playing a modern instrument - evenness of tone; fingering and sound quality; full access throughout the whole range; confidence in the construction (I'm thinking of dry solder joints); speed and physical agility; and access to a broader range of timbres - for me, make up for that small loss in tone quality.
A better saxophonist than I would, I am sure, make much better use of a vintage instrument but for me the modern ones allow me to be a better player at the cost of (possibly) a little bit of tone.
I have several horns - all modern - I would love to have a vintage Conn or Martin etc, in my collection but I would not rely on it to be a 'main and only' instrument until I had really lived with it for some time.

In summary, if you are on a steep learning curve and if it's your only horn then I'd be very sure about your purchase before you go ahead with a vintage horn.

Steve
 
OP
Tommy Ng

Tommy Ng

Member
Messages
583
Location
South Yorkshire
I like Martin saxes a lot. Nice saxes. But there are other older saxes that are good as well.

The Martin Tenor 1950: Looks like the tube is bent? Don't have to be, it can just be the pict.

Olds Ambassador 1950: This is not a Comm III based sax! There is a big differnce between a The Martin and a Olds Ambassdor made by Martin. They are not bad, but I think £ 900.00 for a Olds stencil horn is too much!!

Take a look at Pete Thomas The Martin Tenor. A Committee III horn. You get that horn cheaper than the Olds sax!! Beside Stephen Horward has done the maintance and repair on the sax.

Thomas
I thought Pete's Martin was advertised in 2003??? :confused:
 
OP
Tommy Ng

Tommy Ng

Member
Messages
583
Location
South Yorkshire
I've had both Tenor and Alto Selmer MKVI's in the past and the tone was fantastic - they were both always well maintained and I had many years of joy from them.
I now play modern instruments (Yanigasawa's) - is the tone as good as the MKVI's - probably not, but with the right mouthpiece/reed combination I can come close to the very same result. However the advantages that I find from playing a modern instrument - evenness of tone; fingering and sound quality; full access throughout the whole range; confidence in the construction (I'm thinking of dry solder joints); speed and physical agility; and access to a broader range of timbres - for me, make up for that small loss in tone quality.
A better saxophonist than I would, I am sure, make much better use of a vintage instrument but for me the modern ones allow me to be a better player at the cost of (possibly) a little bit of tone.
I have several horns - all modern - I would love to have a vintage Conn or Martin etc, in my collection but I would not rely on it to be a 'main and only' instrument until I had really lived with it for some time.

In summary, if you are on a steep learning curve and if it's your only horn then I'd be very sure about your purchase before you go ahead with a vintage horn.

Steve
Many thanks for your advice. :thankyou:
 
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