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Saxophones What do you like about your alto

Jeanette

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Well I've borrowed my tutor's Yam 62 to see if I can play alto with tennis elbow and it certainly seems easier with a Jazzlab saxholder.

So I am probably going to buy an alto, am tempted by an early Yamaha having played a Yam sop.

I know I should get out there and try lots but I want one asap and don't have a lot of time to shop around so what alto do you play and what do you like about it:)

Not sure whether to dive in and spend a decent amount or keep it cheap and cheerful. Must admit alto is growing on me.

Jx
 

kevgermany

ex Landrover Nut
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I've had a few and still have most of them. The one I like most is the old Kohlert. Best action, keys and sound. Intonation is dodgy, but worth it for the warm vintage sound. Second favourite is an old student Buescher. Also light/warm, but it roars. The modern altos I've got/had are too bright, with poor feeling action.
 

Nick Wyver

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I seem to be opposite to Kev. I don't like old ones - too dull, lousy action. I currently have 3 - a MkVI, a Keilwerth SX90R and an HLSax (Taiwan via Milandro). Favourite is the Keilwerth (the sound mostly). I seem to favour the MkVI for classical though. Lately I've been using the HLSax one for gigging (blues).
 
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Jeanette

Jeanette

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I seem to be opposite to Kev. I don't like old ones - too dull, lousy action. I currently have 3 - a MkVI, a Keilwerth SX90R and an HLSax (Taiwan via Milandro). Favourite is the Keilwerth (the sound mostly). I seem to favour the MkVI for classical though. Lately I've been using the HLSax one for gigging (blues).

There is a Keilworth EX90 on ebay do you know what the difference is to your SX90R?

Jx
 

trimmy

One day i will...
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10,234
Hanson SA8 it's heavy (weight) but the action is light and it's shiny shiny :D
My R&C (deluxe) is lighter (weight) and has a brighter sound compared to my Hanson, still getting use to the ergonomics too.
 

Greg Strange

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My favourite sax has always been the alto - I've been playing the same alto for the last 28 years - Yamaha YAS 62 - I think Steve Howard's review kind of sums it up nicely...

http://www.shwoodwind.co.uk/Reviews/Saxes/Alto/Yamaha_YAS62.htm

Okay there are flashier models around nowadays and a lot more brands, models available than what was available 28 years ago...

To me the alto has that special voice - that cry - that none of the other saxes have...each to their own...

Happy alto hunting

Greg S.
 

Greg Strange

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There is a Keilworth EX90 on ebay do you know what the difference is to your SX90R?

Jx
The EX range is an immediate (or standard / student?) horn and the SX90R is the top of the line pro horn with rolled tone holes...SX90 has no rolled tone holes, but still pro horn...

Greg S
 

Nick Wyver

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There is a Keilworth EX90 on ebay do you know what the difference is to your SX90R?

Jx
Depends when it was made. The earlier EXs were made in Germany (I've got an EX tenor from '91) but they switched to Taiwan at some point I believe. I've no idea if the quality suffered - my EX is very good. The differences then between that and the SX90R were relatively small from a tonal point of view - no rolled tone holes, no adjustable palm keys, etc.
 

Colin the Bear

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12,953
My G4M nickel alto is the best alto I've ever played. It fits my hands. The action is light and fast. It'll moan, howl, whisper or scream. It likes a vintage mouthpiece and because of the price I don't get nervous about it. It's wearing well too.
 

Ads

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The great thing about Yamaha Jeanette is that you don`t HAVE to have a Pro horn - OK with Sops, you`re a bit stuffed as there are no student ones but Yamaha budget Altos are fantastic and you don`t lose much over a Pro horn by getting one (Keywork refinement mainly) .

As you may remember I had the latest YAS62-III which had been tuned by Steve Howard himself and had a Purple Logo neck fitted now I have a scruffy 21 , I prefer the sound of the 21 (worth about £250) - Admittedly I DO like a bright aggressive sound in an alto so a 21 or 61 is always going to win over a 23/32/475/62 anyway and my 21 is one of the best I`ve heard butI was still looking out for a Rat 61 - after playing a really lively sample of the 61, I`m sticking with the 21 . the 61 offers better build and far better keywork but the keywork on the 21 is good enough for the difference needed to pay and the sound was pretty much identical .

if youi prefer a more balanced horn , grab a 23 or the Vito badged version of the same Jeanette, it`ll rush you about £250 for a good player . maybe a 275 if you want something likely to be mint
 

Pete Thomas

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I would recommend a Jericho, especially as a starter horn. They are very very similar to a Yamaha YAS62. Plus if you buy it via the TamingTheSaxophone store, a percentage goes to our fundraising.
 

Ads

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Prob with a Jericho is that if she wishes to upgrade, resale isn`t easy whereas there`s always a market for used YAS23s - price would be similar too and used YAS23s are plentiful (she`d also have two Yamahas) ..

I think the Jericho represents the best bang for buck in NEW Chinese horns but it`s very alike a YAS62 in the same way that an Elkhart Series-II is like an SA-80 ... the YAS23 is a budget oriented version of the 62 made in the same factory .
 

jazzdoh

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My personal favourite is the Signature Custom RAW,they do them now in different finishes and have an excellent sound,but you won't go wrong with a YAS62 or Yani 901.
 

Pete Thomas

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Prob with a Jericho is that if she wishes to upgrade, resale isn`t easy whereas there`s always a market for used YAS23s - price would be similar too and used YAS23s are plentiful (she`d also have two Yamahas) ..
It all depends what you prefer. I'd rather have a new Jericho (complete with guarantee) over a used YAS23. Obviously any new instrument will depreciate more than a used one. A new jericho would probably dpeoreciate about the same or may less than a new YAS 23.
 

Ads

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There you go , we all differ - I`d take a used Japanese Yamaha any time - Guarantees on horns are pretty moot anyway given that even a new one is best being sent off to a tuner for a service and Yamahas, especially old ones seem to be pretty bomb proof (my 1974 vintage hammered to death and resurrected 21 didn`t need any keywork repairs when it was overhauled)
 

fibracell

Senior Member
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603
I'd get an old Yam 21 or 23 - there are lot's of them around. Not a 275 which can have a few problems. Make sure the sax set up by a good tech.

If you have the cash the 62's are very good and there are a few great deals on used Selmers SA80 SA80 2 around. I just picked up an old series 2 alto, and it's built like a tank - a different feel and tone the 62.
 

kevgermany

ex Landrover Nut
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Prob with a Jericho is that if she wishes to upgrade, resale isn`t easy whereas there`s always a market for used YAS23s - price would be similar too and used YAS23s are plentiful (she`d also have two Yamahas) ..

I think the Jericho represents the best bang for buck in NEW Chinese horns but it`s very alike a YAS62 in the same way that an Elkhart Series-II is like an SA-80 ... the YAS23 is a budget oriented version of the 62 made in the same factory .
Maybe it'll change, like it did with Bauhaus Walstein.

From the feedback here, it's a lot more sax for the money than an old student Yam.
 

Ads

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From the feedback here, it's a lot more sax for the money than an old student Yam.
I`ve not read much feedback here (David UK's review was very early on in his sax playing career) , in fact I can`t think of a Jericho owner who's a member off the top of my head (I`m sure there are one or two though) . I know they`re good horns and about the best of the Chinese in value but I`d argue against it being more sax than a used 21 or 23 .
 
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Jeanette

Jeanette

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Some interesting points thanks all, appreciate it. I must admit if I was going new I was thinking Hanson 5 mainly because they are more local to me and have a 5 yr guarantee period and trade in value against a new Hanson if I want to upgrade with them. Like the Jericho though they don't seem to hold their value in second hand market.

@Pete Thomas Hadn't realised TTS would receive a donation if I buy from Jericho, will look at that.

Still thinking :headscratch:

Jx
 

trimmy

One day i will...
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10,234
Before i got my SA8 i had the 5 and was very happy with it, they are good :thumb: second hand Hansons are a bargain :)
 
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