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2004 Noblet 45 C Clarinet (A Review)


Admin and all around good guy.
Staff member
I purchased this Noblet 45 clarinet in the key of C in the hopes that we could cover an oboe part in a community band with no oboe. Steve of Clarinet Perfection categorizes this instrument as an intermediate clarinet. It is a little bigger than the Eb soprano clarinet and a little smaller than the Bb soprano clarinet. This gorgeous instrument is wood and I can't remember how much I paid for it, but I think it was around $400. Considering that it never got used except for practicing by me, I can't say I got my money's worth. As soon as we got it, we found an oboe player ... so goes it.

The keyworks are well fitted, and operate smoothly. The inherent intonation (intonation before I modify it with my mouth, lipping it up and down) is excellent with variances at the worst around 7 cents minus in the throat keys. (Most people can't hear that difference from in perfect tune.) Most (90%) vintage horns can't come even close to this excellent intonation. I can play from the lowest note to the highest I play (first F above the staff) with ease. Except for the throat notes, I don't feel the need to adjust the pitch. But that is true for me on all my clarinets.

I just looked at the used Noblets selling on eBay and none are as clean and new as mine. The prices range from $150 to $300. I probably will never sell this instrument, but I did want to provide a review for any interested readers.

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I recall Terry (SOTSDO) saying that he had never played a Noblet that wasn't a "keeper". I have a number of clarinets, three of which are Noblets. I have a 45 in Bb that is my main instrument of the type and it's easy to play and mechanically well built. I bought it clean and ready to play for a hundred dollars at a pawn shop a number of years back.