Home Forums Saxophone Tips is it worth buying a Pro horn?

This topic contains 43 replies, has 16 voices, and was last updated by Johnny Johnny 5 months, 3 weeks ago.

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  • #35370

    Anonymous
    #35400
    Johnny
    Johnny
    Keymaster

    you’d have to be rich or crazy to buy a new pro horn.
    crazy because you don’t need one.
    there are student and intermediate level ones that play as well as a pro model.
    But if you’re rich then most definately buy the best sax made.
    That’s how I look at it.
    when I bought my first selmer it was $900
    my second one was $1900
    today their replacement values are $4,000 – $10,000
    so I wouldn’t be buying them either!

    #35403
    Jazz Cat
    Jazz Cat
    Participant

    good points…

    buying a used student/intermediate horn from well known brand is better than new chinese knockoff imo…
    my yts23 I got for $520 on ebay used plays great, though I’m outgrowing it and will buy a yts62 sometime
    for around 2k. my yas62 is still epic fun 30 yrs after i got it.

    and a 1920s beuscher c-mel plays fine

    i would never pay $3k+ for a sax, or get a knockoff china one… yamahas, yanis, selmers, bundys, conn etc all fine

    #35407
    Michael Bishop
    Michael Bishop
    Participant

    What Johnny said above is exactly the point I’ve been trying to say this whole time…you don’t need a pro-model Sax to sound good. I don’t how many times my own Instructor has echoed those same exact words of Johnny’s to other people he meets with. Same thing goes with other players whom I’ve started to network with; again, it’s the player behind the Sax that counts! But no one is saying you should play on Junk. There are loads and loads of great Student model Saxophones out there at very modest prices like Johnny is saying. Get one, take care of it and you’re set for years to come. Just last week, I met a husband and wife team playing Friday night downtown. He played Piano/keyboards and she played Alto Sax and vocals. Her tone on the Alto was simply AMAZING. It was so good that I had to pull them aside and simply had to get some pointers from them, really nice couple! Guess what her Sax set up was? A Jody Jazz Alto MP, Rico reeds and a Vito Alto Sax..yep, she was playing a Sax that is considered a ‘student’ model. She’s been playing that same horn for over 10 years. As she told me, it’s all about focusing on your technique and getting better, this is what really makes you sound good. Kind of goes hand-in-hand with what Andy Snizter says here below in this interview. As he brings out, there are things that we can get that would help us a little, but it all comes down to us as the player. The player behind the Sax is what makes all the difference in the world.

    #35412

    Anonymous

    there are a lot of Pro horns for sale, with varying prices. i agree with the general consensus that Selmars are overpriced.
    Also a lot of pro horns get downgraded by later models etc..

    but my question is “is it worth buying a Pro horn” – doesn’t have to be an overpriced selmar, but a Pro horn in general. Say a Pro Yamaha horn for half the price of a Selmar etc…

    Why do a lot of top players and i mean top players, not the ones playing just playing routine bars and clubs, but the outstanding players, gifted players playing on Pro horns? Must be a reason why?

    another interesting article

    http://www.shwoodwind.co.uk/Reviews/Pro_saxes.htm

    #35413
    Dazza
    Dazza
    Participant

    They play pro horns because they probably get them for FREE! Being commercial artists their exposure would pay the manufacturer back many times over if they say great things about their horn.

    #35417

    Anonymous

    take for instance altissimo – give any sax to a learner, there is no way they will be able to bring out the altissimo straight away until they get to a certain level of playing. Is there something in the Pro sax’s that lesser players can’t bring out in their playing until they get to a certain level of playing? hence for lesser players a Pro sax is wasted on them?

    #35419

    paddy jordan
    Participant

    i would say the mouthpiece is more important than the sax which may sound odd to the student, but as you travel down the sax road things start to come into focus spend your $ on the mouthpiece your sax can come later.

    #35420
    Michael Bishop
    Michael Bishop
    Participant

    Dazza brings out the main point–those guys play those horns because they get them for free and are paid to play them, endorse them, etc.. How many people today have that priviledge in today’s economy? In every sense of the word, a gifted player has the ability to pull out any Sax and sound good; they can do just about anything they wanna do on any Sax. They’re not thinking “I need the Selmer Mark 6 to nail this audition”..heck no, if they’re good then they’re GOING to sound better than everyone else. Just because they’re not playing on what may be considered a ‘pro’ model sax doesn’t mean they’re any less gifted, don’t sound as good, etc.. A person’s ability to play, Improvise, their tone, etc.. isn’t defined/limited by what Sax they’re on. The woman and her husband I spoke to last week is proof of that…she was simply an amazing Alto Sax player, and it was on a “Stencil” Sax, like the video below. Interesting enough, she told me about many of the struggles she had to overcome, the frustration, etc.. She has like 20 years of playing under her belt with loads of insights…there’s no pro model Sax in the world that can compare to the person behind the instrument who has the ability to make the sound they want to come out; that’s what true pro Sax players can do, regardless of what Sax they’re on. While there are some people who we could say are ‘gifted’, but for others they got to that level of playing through plain-old hard work. Like Andy mentions in the video above, the advancement comes from him as the player and not the equipment itself.

    #35423
    Dazza
    Dazza
    Participant

    Great point Paddy. The MP is the engine room! My new $800 MBII has made a huge difference for me on my $1500 Yanagisawa tenor so now it’s up to me to continue to develop my chops for a better sound. Every day I feel it is getting easier to play so no need for me to upgrade my sax anytime soon.

    #35425
    Michael Bishop
    Michael Bishop
    Participant

    Internet acting slow here, storm front on the way.
    @ Paddy and Dazza: Yes, that is 110% correct (I didn’t say 100 percent, did I LOL) Check out the link I put below from the man Theo Wanne himself, look at his very first sentence in this article he wrote. Here is the one of the best MP makers in the world saying the same thing that Johnny has always us: It’s in the MP and the player, not the Sax itself. I guarantee you that Dazza could take his MBII with his reed selection and get a killing sound on any Sax. I say reed selection..yes, the reed is very important too. Without a good reed, were not going to get a good sound. A good reed is something we can easily look over. The greatest MP in the world is useless without a good reed. You don’t need to worry about another Sax anytime soon Dazza, like Andy Snitzer said in the video above you something that you feel comfortable with, you’re getting a fantastic sound. So now do like you said and focus on those chops 🙂 How’s the Guardala feel to you in the higher register to say high F#, high F? Man, the Altissimo that could be popped out on that thing would be ferocious…you’re tempting me LOL. Just kidding 🙂 I do plan on getting one later or so in the year, but not just yet.
    @ Sxpoet: What is your Instructor’s take on this? What does he say?

    http://theowanne.com/knowledge/baffle-shapes

    #35434

    Anonymous

    i repeat the question again “is it worth buying a pro sax”?

    i want facts, valid reasons for buying a Pro Sax, not oppinions, not excuses for not buying a Pro Sax based on money or saying someone who can plsy better thsn me will sound the same on a junk sax as on a pro sax.

    Come on guys! i got to have some excuse for buying a Pro Sax, otherwise how will i get it past my wife? lol

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