All profit supporting special needs music education and Help Musicians

Vintage v New saxophones - ease of playing

ProfJames

Elementary member
Messages
12,069
Locality
Berkshire, UK
Have just switched back to my Benson alto after using a Martin Imperial for the last three months and I cannot believe the difference in sound and ease of playing. The Benson is easier to blow and play in comparison to the Martin.

Also just trying a Firbacell reed and am finding I need a lot more embouchre to get it going - although it sounds fine. Is that usual with fibre v reed?
 

Reed Warbler

Senior Member
Messages
617
Locality
Marciac, France
Your Benson feels easier but does it sound better? My chum has a Benson and he can keep it! It might have a smoother action but my peeling old King sounds much better; wouldn't swap it even with a largish cash adjustment!
 

Bobby G

Senior Member
Messages
4,992
Locality
Wonderful Welwyn Garden City, Herts
I can only compare my 'modern' (mid-80's) Yamaha 62 alto with my mid/late 40's Dolnet, and I have to say I prefer the feel and sound of my YAS62. The Dolly has a certain charm but is harder work, so I tend to stick with the Yam.

Just for the sake of comparison, I'd love to have a go on one or two of the older classics, not that I could ever afford one! so if anyone has an older Selmer, Conn, Buescher or Martin I could borrow for a while.....? ;}
 

Nick Wyver

noisy
Café Supporter
Messages
6,052
Locality
Minster On Sea
Yes, it's a well known fact that old saxes always sound better than new ones.

In fact old anything is better than new anything.

1950s TV are much more satisfying to watch than modern ones. Old cars are much more stylish and reliable than those nasty new ones. And as for phones - give me one of those bakelite dial jobbies any day - much more versatile than a ruddy android thingy.
 

Jamesmac

Well-Known Member
Messages
1,872
Your Benson feels easier but does it sound better? My chum has a Benson and he can keep it! It might have a smoother action but my peeling old King sounds much better; wouldn't swap it even with a largish cash adjustment!

Have to agree, Vintage is another kettle of fish, I compared a YAS855 Cusom Alto, alongside a Chu Berry New Wonder 11 Conn, that is in need of an overhaul. Obviously the ergos on the Yamaha are superior, but the Conn has a warmer more flexable sound. Watch this space as the Conn is with the tech as I speak.
 

ellinas

Well-Known Member
Messages
1,102
Locality
Athens, Greece
I think late beaugniers are the affordable solution.
Ergos are really good and they have the SOUND.

Japan Yamaha's though are sweet. Even the student line. Are they considered vintage?
 

majordennis

Senior Member
Messages
485
Locality
Gone West
Sorry, don't buy the vintage v. modern, if you feel comfortable with the sound and feel of your horn that's the one for you.
 

Jamesmac

Well-Known Member
Messages
1,872
Sorry, don't buy the vintage v. modern, if you feel comfortable with the sound and feel of your horn that's the one for you.

But it's not a versus thing, it's that there is a difference. I like my Cutom Yamaha, and I like my Conn New Wonder 11 but playing them side by side, there is a difference.
 

Jamesmac

Well-Known Member
Messages
1,872
PS. Once the conn is restored I would like to make some recordings, with the Conn and the Yamaha Altos. To see if the difference shows in a recording, for my own curiosity, at the moment I think i would in the end like to have both, but who knows.
 

ProfJames

Elementary member
Messages
12,069
Locality
Berkshire, UK
Agree with all of the comments so far. The Benson is easier to blow but the Martin sound is so much better! Even as a novice sax player I can hear the difference but at my current level it is easier and quicker to learn on the Benson. However...........after practice on teh Benson I always have a fifteen minute blow on one of my Martins!
 

majordennis

Senior Member
Messages
485
Locality
Gone West
Prof, regarding non-cane reeds, you should give Legere (especially the Signature) a try, IMHO they are the best of bunch that I have tried, they are expensive but with care they last a long time and play straight from the box, also I would add that their customer care is excellent as well.

It is worth stressing though that putting your mouthpiece cap on or putting it back in a case is essential as the tips are very susceptible to the slightest contact.
 

ProfJames

Elementary member
Messages
12,069
Locality
Berkshire, UK
Hi Major, just what I have been using (albeit by mistake!). A Legere 1.5. Really pushing my emboucher but the sound is good. Need a lot more breath than a Gonzalez 2.5!

Thanks for advice. Any more advice gratefully accepted as ever.
 

Members online

Popular Discussions

London
Paris
New York
Los Angeles
Sydney
Moscow
New Delhi
Top Bottom