New Here, which should i buy?

Discussion in 'Bb (Soprano) Clarinet' started by Ivan M, Nov 10, 2014.

  1. Ivan M

    Ivan M

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    I am new to Clarinet and have decided to take the plunge on either a YAMAHA 650 or A Buffet Crampon E12, now here is my short story. Played Sax thru out JHS and HS, and was first chair on tenor sax, played after HS as well, then of course got married, had a wonderful son, put him thru college
    and now have the time at 47 to give Clarinet a try, for pure enjoyment and nothing else, i did read music, but of course have not read music or played a SAX in over 18 years or so. If you were in the Market for either of these 2 horns which would it be and why? I noticed that there are not too many
    Clarinet players into Yamaha, and plenty more into BUFFET. I have been doing my HOMEWORK and pretty much know all the models Buffet makes. I don't mind buying used, if the instrument is MINT or at least in EXCELLENT condition. Any and all advice will be greatly appreciated. Also if anyone can recommend
    i good quality mouthpiece costing no more than 150.00 that too will be appreciated. I do plan to get some basic lessons locally once i have the horn with me, as i know the clarinet fingering is different from SAX. Thanks in advance.
     
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  2. pete

    pete Brassica Oleracea Staff Member Administrator

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    The YCL-650 is a professional horn and the Buffet E-12 is an intermediate horn. All other things being equal, I'd go for the Yamaha. Hey, they're about the same price, new.

    I've been "into" Yamaha for years. I respect Buffet's clarinets. I think Selmer clarinets are also nice and some have been better than some of the Buffets I've played and vice-versa. There are hundreds of different makes and models that lots of folks would consider "good." I wouldn't turn my nose up at an SML Symphonie or a Couesnon. Leblanc has made some really nice horns, too.

    You really need to determine how much cash you want to pay and if you want new or used -- and there are so many good used horns, I can't come up with a really compelling argument to buy something new.

    As far as mouthpieces are concerned, I've been very happy with my Selmer C85. You can probably pick one up for under $130 US. I've also liked the Vandoren B40 and B45 mouthpieces. Those go for under $100. You m,ight be able to find a gently used Pyne or something for around that $150 mark. I'd just recommend that you stick with hard rubber mouthpieces.
     
  3. Gandalfe

    Gandalfe Administrator Staff Member Administrator

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    Get a pro used clarinet, that is what I did. It was after a 20+ year break from playing sax. It was a lovely used Buffet R13 Festival and now 12 years later I still love it. It is a double, I play sax as my primary instrument. By the way, now retired all I do is play music. It's a wonderful life when you don't have to make a living doing it. Good luck! Do let us know what you end up doing.
     
  4. Ivan M

    Ivan M

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    WOW, thanks for the great advice, i have heard great things about the SELMER C85, i will def go with that. Gandalfe thanks as well, your advice is spot on, pro used, if i find it i will grab it. I will keep you posted, it will be another 2 weeks or so before i will be buying....Excited as ever! By the way i too am retired....Law Enforcement retired and loving it...Blessings!
     
  5. pete

    pete Brassica Oleracea Staff Member Administrator

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    Also note that these come in a variety of tip openings: 105. 115, and 120. I'm fairly sure I have a C85/120, which is supposed to be the easiest blowing one. The C85/115 seems to be the "middle of the road." I think the 105 was supposed to be "jazzier."
     
  6. Ivan M

    Ivan M

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    You answered my question about mouthpiece numbers and what they meant, that was gonna be my next question, I will stick with the middle of the road.

    Would this be considered a series 9? It states series 9 star, not sure if it is the same thing. I have read good things about the series 9, they are even preferred over the newer series 10 by most players. Thanks again.




    http://www.ebay.com/itm/Selmer-Pari...prg=20131017132637&rk=4&rkt=4&sd=301357406386
     
  7. Ivan M

    Ivan M

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  8. pete

    pete Brassica Oleracea Staff Member Administrator

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    You've gone from Yamaha to Buffet to Selmer. It might be more helpful for you to post what you want out of an instrument and how much you're wanting to spend.
     
  9. Ivan M

    Ivan M

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    My limit is 2 grand, thanks in advance. I raised the roof limit due to the fact that I noticed at that limit there are many more options for me to choose from. I would like a horn that has great tone, plays super smooth, and out of the box ZERO issues. Thank you again.
     
  10. Carl H.

    Carl H. Distinguished Member Distinguished Member

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    I think you've described a sampled clarinet on a keyboard. :geezer2:

    Clarinets are finicky, particularly for beginners.

    I honestly think you should pick up a vito and blow it for a few months of lessons before making a decision. Get a feel of how to play the thing before you jump in to the deep end.
     
  11. Ivan M

    Ivan M

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    Problem is i have played Sax before for over 10 years, i can't see spending 500 dollars on a VITO and then buying something higher end in 3 or 4 months. Why not use that 500 towards something better from the beginning, thanks. I do know what you mean though. And after using the Vito for a few months i will be lucky to get 250 for it in return...lolololo.
     
  12. Carl H.

    Carl H. Distinguished Member Distinguished Member

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    If you've never played an instrument with open holes, you may not like how YOU are the source of most leaks now. The vito gets a decent sound and has good intonation AND has about the smallest tone holes going. Pick up one used for $50 and have a tech go over it, you won't lose much if anything if you give up, and you will have a decent outdoor gig/ backup instrument in decent condition should you decide to continue with the instrument.

    Then get lessons so you know what you are doing from the get go. Once you have a clue as to what you are doing, then pickup a horn that suits you. Don't stick yourself with an expensive horn you may not like once you know your way around on the instrument.

    Just noise from some anonymous guy on the internet who probably doesn't know what he is talking about.
     
  13. Ivan M

    Ivan M

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    I don't see it as noise, i see it as GREAT advice, and it is absolutely very well taken. Funny thing about the open hole thing, i play Native American Flutes, which is nothing compared to a clarinet, but they are all played with open holes, i own over 25 of them. Another addiction of mine....lolololol I have one that has pretty large holes for the key it was made in, and it took me a few hours to get the hang of that particular one, that and the fact that the holes are a little farther apart than my others.
     
  14. Carl H.

    Carl H. Distinguished Member Distinguished Member

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    But do they have multiple keys for your pinky to hit? Hitting them will change your hand position, and "cause leaks", until you have some experience, and even then they will mess with you at the worst possible moments.
     
  15. Ivan M

    Ivan M

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  16. Gandalfe

    Gandalfe Administrator Staff Member Administrator

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    Ivan, you sound like me. Get a nice used pro horn. If you lived in the Seattle area, I could work with you to try as many as possible. My boss has a warehouse full of them. But I still have the first one I bought from him in 2004. I had my wife, the real clarinet player, play every note and I marked the differences off tune, the variance was never more than 5 cents or so across the range of the instrument. You should be able to get a dream clarinet for your budget. If you find a great deal, let me know and I'll try to find a better one for you for less money. I've done this for a lot of my hobbyist musician friends. If you are overseas, Ben could probably do that for you too. Note, like the sax, the clarinet is very addictive, I now have a sop, alto, and bass having recently sold my contra alto and contrabass clarinet. :)
     
  17. SOTSDO

    SOTSDO Old King Log Staff Member CE/Moderator

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    While on the surface that seems logical, the truth is that the situation is much more complicated.

    If you look around here a bit, you will find any number of saxophonists who state wistfully that clarinet playing seems beyond their reach. And, there's a good reason for that.

    Saxophone playing employs a very loose embouchure, at least by clarinet standards. I have known a number of sax players who persist in playing their clarinet like a skinny soprano sax, and then wonder why they squeak and can't play in tune with everyone else. What is wrong is that they are applying saxophone standards to a quite different instrument.

    Clarinet playing involves an instrument mouthpiece placed into a grimacing mouth at a relatively strict angle, not the "shoved in the mouth with an O ring embouchure" style that sax players are accustomed to through years of practice. Then too, the lamentations that you see hereon over the lack of plateau clarinets is due (for the most part) to sax players, accustomed as they are to flipping their fingers down on the bis key and the like, suddenly discovering that you really, REALLY need to plop those digits down in precisely the same place each and every time, without fail.

    In practical terms, having learned how to play the saxophone in the past gets you only about a third of the way towards being a clarinet player. Reading the music and music theory is virtually identical (but watch out for those octave jumps, so automatic on the sax but quite different on a clarinet family horn, and you will see the high notes done in standard notation versus the common 8va[/] method), but (despite the similar mouthpieces) the blowing and the fingering of any is very different (for a sax player).

    (Perversely, the transition from a clarinet to the sax is much easier. Once you get the “loose as a goose” embouchure under your belt, it's all just heavier lifting.)

    For all of these reasons (and because of the significant number of discouraged sax to clarinet players in my past experience) it's better to follow the “cheap horn to try, then buy a keeper” approach.

    Oh, and take four lessons, at least until you get the mouth and fingers set up right.
     
  18. Ivan M

    Ivan M

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    Sounds GREAT, I am on the EAST COAST! Thanks a million!
     
  19. Gandalfe

    Gandalfe Administrator Staff Member Administrator

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    Lot of great advice, but it's up to you. Let us know how it goes. I think we can all agree, a few lessons with a teacher who actually plays the clarinet can save you years of struggle and lessen your odds of never getting where you want to be on the instrument.
     
  20. pete

    pete Brassica Oleracea Staff Member Administrator

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    Of course, you could also get a rental or lease-to-own. While you'll probably only see student or intermediate horns if you do this, there are a lot of really good student and intermediate horns out there.

    Gandalfe (Jim) works with one of our website sponsors, Quinn the Eskimo. If Jim says he can get a good deal for you, he really can.
     

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