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Roland Aerophone AE-10

pete

Brassica Oleracea
Staff member
Administrator
There are several YouTube videos linked off of SOTW. There's quite a bit on Roland's website.

I can only describe the quality of the sounds on the AE as "adequate." I made the comment, on SOTW, that I wasn't really expecting much with the quality of the built in sounds: if you want really good quality, you need to add a really, really good speaker and essentially a computer with a really decent sound card. That would make the AE extremely bulky and heavy -- mostly because of the speaker -- and chances are extremely good you'd need to have a power adapter hanging off the thing at all times. However, it sounds better than the Casio, at least. If you listen to the "sax choir" sample off of Roland's website under "Experience" (doesn't allow a direct link), it does sound better when you go through a nice speaker.

I tend to think that the design is supposed to be ergonomic. I think that's a plus, but I'd be very interested in actually pressing the keys. The keys look like just buttons on my TV's remote control.

The big thin on SOTW was whether or not the AE is a rather expensive toy or a professional instrument. I think that's a bit hard to quantify. It's definitely not priced in the "toy" range. That's about what the Akai EWI 5000s costs, and that's their top-of-the-line model with wireless audio. However, the Roland looks a lot more plastic and fragile than the Akai or Yamaha controllers. I guess you'd have to compare it to the Casios (all discontinued), the AKAI USB, and Yamaha's Wind'jammr (discontinued). It's a bit of a step up, but I dunno how much. If the AE doesn't have a 7 octave range or higher, it's definitely closer to the "toy" classification.

All that being said, if someone wants to send me one to review, I'd love to try it!
 

Aulos303

_•_ •_• __ •_•_ •____|
Banned :(
I like the idea of an electronic woodwind instrument because I would be able to practice without disturbing anyone. But that is WAY too expensive!
 

TrueTone

College Student who likes wind instruments & music
I like the idea of an electronic woodwind instrument because I would be able to practice without disturbing anyone. But that is WAY too expensive!
You should try looking at bassoon prices, might be a teeny bit higher for a Heckel. :emoji_rage:
 

pete

Brassica Oleracea
Staff member
Administrator
I mentioned on SOTW that if you just want to be able to be quiet(er) when you're practicing sax, just get one of the ugly sax mute things that go over your horn. They're only a couple hundred bucks. Way cheaper than the AE 10. You could even try these for even less cash (linked the video because the website is virus infected). You've got a bigger horn? Soundproofing foam doesn't cost that much. Or buy a shed and hang up some heavy carpets. Depending on where you live, you're probably going to need some air conditioning action goin' on ....

The #1 problem with wind controllers is trying to find a market. They're too expensive to use as "practice" instruments and they're not that great at replicating other wind instruments, unless you're willing to spend a LONG time searching and testing or spend a lot of cash.
 

TrueTone

College Student who likes wind instruments & music
What's a Heckel?
Brand of Bassoon (and sometimes other stuff) that tends to be very expensive-They're German, very old, and basically created the modern key system for Bassoon. (and have a fairly low production each year, probably because of the expense and time for making a bassoon.)
 

pete

Brassica Oleracea
Staff member
Administrator
Heckelphone, the inspiration for the Conn-O-Sax. Heckel Clarina and Heckelphone Clarinet are a few of the interesting Heckel instruments.

Heckelphones are fairly uncommon, but are still available for sale. Peter Hurd has one for $30,000. Conn-O-Sax prices generally start around $30K and end up around $40K, but people have tried to sell for $100K. I think all of the Heckel Clarina ads I've ever seen were in the form of, "I have no idea what this is," and end up selling in the $1K range because of that. I think their scarcity is probably deserving of a much higher value. I'd strongly doubt you'll ever find a Heckelphone Clarinet outside a German museum (nice pics there, BTW, and a more full print of the Heckel lineup).

New Heckel bassoons are generally $40K to $50K and used ones are all over the map, depending on the year, wood, fingering, etc. and can be as expensive as new ones. Even the bocals can go for good $.

Just looking at a Heckel history website, looks like they started production in 1831 and started using serial numbers in 1877. They've only built about 16,000 instruments, total. That's about 115 horns per year ... and they have a waiting list. I think I read that they put a serial number on a project then age the wood for 12 years.
 

TrueTone

College Student who likes wind instruments & music
Heckelphone, the inspiration for the Conn-O-Sax. Heckel Clarina and Heckelphone Clarinet are a few of the interesting Heckel instruments.

Heckelphones are fairly uncommon, but are still available for sale. Peter Hurd has one for $30,000. Conn-O-Sax prices generally start around $30K and end up around $40K, but people have tried to sell for $100K. I think all of the Heckel Clarina ads I've ever seen were in the form of, "I have no idea what this is," and end up selling in the $1K range because of that. I think their scarcity is probably deserving of a much higher value. I'd strongly doubt you'll ever find a Heckelphone Clarinet outside a German museum (nice pics there, BTW, and a more full print of the Heckel lineup).

New Heckel bassoons are generally $40K to $50K and used ones are all over the map, depending on the year, wood, fingering, etc. and can be as expensive as new ones. Even the bocals can go for good $.

Just looking at a Heckel history website, looks like they started production in 1831 and started using serial numbers in 1877. They've only built about 16,000 instruments, total. That's about 115 horns per year ... and they have a waiting list. I think I read that they put a serial number on a project then age the wood for 12 years.
Wow, first time I've ever gotten to see real pictures of a heckelphone-Clarinet.
Thanks!
It's really interesting looking. Wonder how it played.
 

pete

Brassica Oleracea
Staff member
Administrator
Yah. At one point, I wanted to write a bit more about how the Heckelphone inspired the Conn-O-Sax and stuff, then I found out about all the other Heckel goodness, not to mention other members of the oboe family, like the bass oboe, which then widened the scope to instruments made by Benedikt Eppelsheim. It'd be a lot more than a small article and I have way too many other projects I haven't finished yet.

There's a nice discussion on the Clarinet BBoard that has links to some pics and such, but most of the links need to be accessed through archive.org. It's really worth it.
 
I agree

I like the idea of an electronic woodwind instrument because I would be able to practice without disturbing anyone. But that is WAY too expensive!
I really like it and I will eventually buy one. What I really like is that it has built in sounds. I have a WX5. I like to play at night while we are watching TV. I have to unhook the thing and take it and the module into the living room. I wish it had a built in sound even if it was just one. I also just bought a thing called a FM7 Midiwind. Made by a company called Innovations. Does anybody know anything about it? I can't find anything.
 

pete

Brassica Oleracea
Staff member
Administrator
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