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Saxophones Your opinions on buying a new tenor


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I learnt to play as a long held ambition, purely for my own amusement, (and in retaliation against the 9 year old girl next door playing the trumpet) on an Artemis alto bought six months ago.
I'd never even seen a sax close up before.
I now want to try a tenor because I prefer the lower sound, I can hear it better.
So for £1000 new, not second hand, I am considering:
Trevor James Revolution II because the Artemis seems to be good, and never had any problems;
Hanson ST8 which I'd never heard of before seeing the generally favourable comments on this site;
A Yamaha 275 because it's a Yamaha;
Or any other suggestions.
Would anybody like to give me their thoughts on these with points for or against?
The only music shops within reach have one Jupiter and one Stagg so I would have to buy by mail order and rely on the seven day return. Speaking of which if saxes (or anything else) are returned under this policy are they then still sold as new?
Can you not make the trip a bit further afield to or Woodwind & Reed in Cambridge? Or any of the other shops that stock something other than standard student instruments? You can't beat playing a few different ones. This thread will shortly be inundated by very genuine recommendations for Bauhaus Walstein instruments, and very good they are too (I have a soprano), but if you are shelling out not insubstantial wads of dosh for something that is important to you, I really think you should get out and explore the meerkat, sorry, market :)
We bought a Stagg Clarinet a couple of years ago for our son. Pile of junk. I don't know what the saxes are like, but the clarinet is so bad, the instrument makers won't touch it. This was cheap - for all the wrong reasons.
Well I have a Bauhaus Walstein tenor. I think its great, and the vendors give good service.

The same can be, and is, said about Hanson; both their instruments and service.

Doubt you can go wrong with a Yamaha. And I'm sure I recall good comments about the TJ as well.

That's a big help isn't it :)

If you can't visit as Dooce suggests you might give the vendors a call and see how they talk. If you're buying mail order being comfortable with the supplier and thier back up service might be more important than the brand name on the instrument.
I'd go for the Yamaha. Ergonomics are excellent, intonation is accurate and he resale price will be higher than the other makes you have mentioned.

I recently borrowed a 275 whilst my 82Z was being fixed. I was surprised with the horn's quality - and this is Yamaha's entry model.

It's a safe bet.
I can't disagree more, you can't just buy a sax because people say it is good. I upgraded a year ago from my lovely sakkusu, but had a bonus at work so off i went to Dawkes in Maidenhead. I really thought i was going to buy a Yamaha. I tried the aforementioned as well as selmers, cannonballs. Then i put the mauriat to my lips, well that was it for me, i did blow my budget but now have a sax for life, it was a close call between that and the Cannonball though. The problem is if you just buy one over the net you have nothing to compare it with. I would suggest make the effort and get to a dealer where you can try out different brands. It's not only sound but ergonomics of the instrument, weight etc. My Mauriat weighs a ton but the sound is just beautiful. As you have seen there are loads on the forum who swear by Walsteins. we are all different, try them out. Let us know how you got on. Rgds Phil
I have to fully agree with 'thehunt'.
The Mauriat's are outstanding value and sound absolutely fantastic. In the professional end of the scale they are at least as good as the competition and priced more competitively. To my ears they sound more MK VI than the Selmer Reference.
I have to confess that I bought a Yanigasawa 992 in preference to a Mauriat back in February but it was a very close call, On reflection if I had the same choice again I would buy the Mauriat and save myself £500. Actually I plan to pick up a new tenor in 2010 and it will be a Mauriat. stocks two price groups of Mauriats - one in the price range around £1000 and the more expensive ones around the £2000 mark - although there are a few in between as well.
They carry the stigma of being made in Taiwan but they are quality controlled and marketed by the company in Paris.
I believe that these horns will be priced up there with the Selmers, Yamahas and Yanigasawas in a couple of years once their reputation has spread.
Mornington Locket plays Mauriat - I saw him live a few weeks back - sounds fantastic.
BTW, I was in another shop in London some months back and tried a horn that the assistant said came from the same factory as the Mauriats and thus was as good. It was much cheaper but it was a very very poor relative in terms of feel, finish and sound quality. So don't be fooled by that sales line.
If you want a great sounding and playing horn for a very competitive price then try the Mauriat.
I agree with Phil. You're not buying as a beginner, you're buying to keep. And you have enough experience to know what you want when you see/play it. Yamaha's a really safe bet - if you want to sell it on... But you shouldn't be looking at it this way.

Pete's been getting new kit. Tried out lots. Seems to be going down the BW route. Definitely worth a look.

Would be worth checking out the reviews at as well.

Get one that suits you - very much like buying a car or, dare I say it, getting married.
I have a Yamaha YTS275 and I love it - BUT I would go with the others that suggested trying them out first, every sax plays differently for a different person, so it's worth the effort. I tried out about 6-7 different ones when I was buying, and that was before I'd even learnt to play the thing (although I was already a clarinet and bass clarinet player so I had a reasonable idea of what I was doing).
it was a close call between that and the Cannonball though.

....which mirrors my experience after an afternoon spent playing the Yam and Yani as well. Budget drove my eventual choice but with no long-term regrets at all. If, and it's a big if, you can find a good secondhand Cannonball, as I was lucky enough to do, they are a fantastic bargain.

Similar threads... or are they? Maybe not but they could be worth reading anyway 😀

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