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Saxophones Why are Selmer SBAs more expensive than Mark VIs?

davidk

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Looking at Reverb Gear | Reverb and at West Yorkshire Woodwind Selmer Archives - West Yorkshire Woodwind the Selmer Super Balanced Action tenor saxophones are priced from around £10 000 while most Mark VIs can be bought for less than this.

Why is the SBA now more desirable according to the markets? Have famous players switched to it, or are the collectors paying more for the rarity caused by the limited production run? The SBA has always been rarer than the Mark VI, but is it only recently that it’s become more expensive?

Do better off people invest in rare instruments during recessions?
 

MarkSax

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Looking at Reverb Gear | Reverb and at West Yorkshire Woodwind Selmer Archives - West Yorkshire Woodwind the Selmer Super Balanced Action tenor saxophones are priced from around £10 000 while most Mark VIs can be bought for less than this.

Why is the SBA now more desirable according to the markets? Have famous players switched to it, or are the collectors paying more for the rarity caused by the limited production run? The SBA has always been rarer than the Mark VI, but is it only recently that it’s become more expensive?

Do better off people invest in rare instruments during recessions?
Take off all your question marks and you’ll have your answers JMO.
 

DavidUK

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Quick look around finds two UK SBA altos, £2,700 & £2,800 in the small ads and a tenor at £7,200 (in France).
Maybe tenors are rarer? Or better regarded than SBA altos?
 

Pete Thomas

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tenor at £7,200 (in France).
Maybe tenors are rarer? Or better regarded than SBA altos?
It's a tenor thing (MVI tenors are more than altos).I think I bought and sold my SBA alto for probably less than 3000 so, basically maybe slight;y less than typical MKVI alto prices which may be more than 3K, (but shouldn't be!)
 

Jimmymack

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SBAs seem to have been rediscovered. About 10 years ago they were cheaper than Mk VIs. Whether or not they are better I wouldn't know but I've never much liked VI tenors but loved the SBA I tried. Rarity probably has something to do with it as well.
 

Hankenstine

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They're trendy at the moment.

I think SBA's have been in vogue for over 20 years, since the 1990s/early 2000's when many notable modern players at the time such as Joshua Redman, Chris Potter, Joe Lovano, Seamus Blake, Scott Hamilton etc... where all using them. Probably the reason they played them is that their idols played one.... now all the newer players who idolise said modern players will idolise their horns too........... it is a self perpetuating thing.
 

DavidUK

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Am I correct in saying a Ref 36 is the modern reincarnation of the SBA?
Anyone compared alto or tenor against their older cousins?
Which one won?
 

GCinCT

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I believe the Ref 36 is based on the Balanced Action which was first produced in 1936.
 

rhysonsax

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I believe the Ref 36 is based on the Balanced Action which was first produced in 1936.

I think it is supposed to "pay tribute to" the Balanced Action in some vague way, but isn't really "based on" in the sense of body tube, neck and mechanism design.

Rhys
 

GCinCT

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I think it is supposed to "pay tribute to" the Balanced Action in some vague way, but isn't really "based on" in the sense of body tube, neck and mechanism design.

Rhys
Thanks for the correction. Poor choice of words on my part.
 

Trigger

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I didn’t pay that much for my BA alto although it was a relac still sounds great
 
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Am I correct in saying a Ref 36 is the modern reincarnation of the SBA?
Anyone compared alto or tenor against their older cousins?
Which one won?

Here's a couple of guys who did that and the Ref 36 seemed to hold its own.

Brian McCarthy (Ref 36 vs Ref 54 vs BA)
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View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q6THLWW2cl4


Nigel McGill (Ref 36 vs SBA)
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View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5zxJJtd5oE8


Btw, Ref 36 comes only in the tenor version (Ref 54 is available as both alto & tenor)
 

Dr G

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Am I correct in saying a Ref 36 is the modern reincarnation of the SBA?
Anyone compared alto or tenor against their older cousins?
Which one won?

As others have remarked, the Ref 36 is an homage to the BA. Having owned both, I prefer the feel of the BA and the bell note intonation of the Ref 36. The spring-loaded pivots and spring cradle location prevent the modern Selmers from copying the smoothness of a BA/SBA/Mk VI. Cosmetically, I love the engraving on the BA, and, among modern horns, the Ref 36 (dark lacquer) is my favorite lacquer.

My #1 tenor is a Borgani Jubilee OBT.
 
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