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 reed strength for B40
Author: sinkdraiN 
Date:   2003-04-28 12:30

I play a B40 and a trying to find a reed strength. I get a clear focused sound from a Vandoren blue box #3. Last night during a show (playing loud), I felt like I could use a stronger reed. I got out a bunch of 3.5s and they played stuffy and unresponsive. The only thing I liked was that I could push them harder. Should I force myself to play the 3.5s or does it sound like I should just work with the 3s. The B40 projects well but sometimes in pits i need just a little extra punch. What are most B40 players using?

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 Re: reed strength for B40
Author: sinkdraiN 
Date:   2003-04-28 13:19

After doing a search of "B40" on the site i found a lot of rave reviews for the Hite "D." Those that have played the b40 and hite "d" - do you find one with better projection? Im looking for a piece that projects well for jazz situations but still have a big full dark tone for legit situations.

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 Re: reed strength for B40
Author: Ed 
Date:   2003-04-28 14:01

I don't know how they compare, but Hite makes some great stuff.

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 Re: reed strength for B40
Author: Liquorice 
Date:   2003-04-28 15:07

On my B40 I use Vandoren 3.5 V12's. They are softer than the 3.5 blue box Vandorens, but have a fuller sound than the blue box 3's (for me). The quality of the cane of the V12's is also better and more consistent.

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 Re: reed strength for B40
Author: funkymunky 
Date:   2003-04-28 17:38

I think you should get 4's for practice to strengthen your embrocher. I have been practicing on 4 1/2 GCS ricos and a mitchel lurie 5 1/2. I can feel my embrocher get real sore after awhile. Then after I can hardly blow a note. I switch to my regular reeds to cool-down.
When I play normally with my regular 3 -3 1/2 It is much easier to blow and last alot longer without getting tired. Also easier to sound better.
Maybe you should try something other than vandorens I seem to find better with most other reeds. But V12s are good too.

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 Re: reed strength for B40
Author: Benni 
Date:   2003-04-28 22:48

Maybe try some Zonda #3 hard or #3 1/2 soft reeds . . . I've found that they're pretty much inbetween the Vandoren #3 and #3 1/2.

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 Re: reed strength for B40
Author: D Dow 
Date:   2003-04-28 23:22

I notice some students playing flat on the B4013 as of late....the B40 is I find far better sounding and easier to adapt reeds to.

David Dow

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 Re: reed strength for B40
Author: massa 
Date:   2003-04-28 23:59

I use B40-13 with Vandoren V.12 (3.5) or Gonzalez FOF (3.25).
Happy with an outcome so far. I also use B40(profile) with the
same reed strengths under A=442 or 443.

When I use the same reed(strength), I found B40-13 less resistant than B40(profile). I'm guessing that the slight difference in their facings causes that feel. (It is just my feeling about them. I've never play-tested many B40s and B40-13s side by side. )

I cannot really agree with the opinions to play on harder reeds
(4 or 4.5 of Vandoren) for B40. If you just want to over-blow all the
time it might be okay(I'm sure the sound will be pretty powerfull, but
it is far too difficult to control your sound with that setting. e.g., try
a staccato-ed phrase with pp dynamics).
I'm not a believer of "No pain - no gain" by all means ;-)

Do you find any differences between B40(traditional) and B40 profile88??
Some claim B40(trad.) plays with far "fuller" sound than the porfile counterpart.

- m

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 Re: reed strength for B40
Author: sinkdraiN 
Date:   2003-04-29 04:20

David, I read that you switched to a hite mouthpiece. What made you switch? I actually switched from a B45 to a B40 because of your insightful comments. I find everything you said about the B40 to be right on the money. So Im very curious how the Hite compares to the B40. I'm going to head off and buy some V12 3.5s it seems like they work well.

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 Re: reed strength for B40
Author: Clarence 
Date:   2003-04-29 05:15


I haven't played the B40, but I have played the M15, 5RV-lyre, and the B45dot. I chose the B45dot. The B45dot was harsh sounding on V12 3 1/2 reeds and was quick to close up on soft reeds. The M15 and 5RV-lyre were simular but with less volume.

The Hite D is everything the Vandorens aren't. I'm not sure if it will work in the pit, you may have to do a trial. I'm currently playing a Lomax Classic A3 and have no problem playing louder than the other clarinets. This will cost more money, but should do what you want.

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 Re: reed strength for B40
Author: Hiroshi 
Date:   2003-04-29 09:29

B40 was developed (with the help of Guy Deprus, I think, some 20 years ago) to enable fuller tones with thinner reeds 2.5 or 3.

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 Re: reed strength for B40
Author: D Dow 
Date:   2003-04-29 13:19

The reason I switched to the Hite is due to the fact I was able to get the resonate sound I like without having to work as hard as I was working on the B40.

I also found the Hite possessed a super even scale with more accurate intonation. Reeds are certainly alot easier to adapt to the Hite D facing. However, if you like playing on an open mouthpiece the Hite is probably a little too close for some players. The Hite is very similar to the response and color of the old Chedeville Lealandais pieces.

That being said, the B40 is a superb mouthpiece, and be sure to find the right reed and response and tone of the B40 is excellent!! You may have to pull out a bit with the B40....

David Dow

Post Edited (2003-05-05 15:56)

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 Re: reed strength for B40
Author: BARRY 
Date:   2003-05-14 09:39

I use B45s (normal, lyre and profile) normally, but find them all unplayable on my Buffet A clarinet. For the time being I am using a standard B40 on the A horn. It's OK but nothing to write home about. My reed strength is VD V12 3.
Any suggetions?


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 Re: reed strength for B40
Author: D Dow 
Date:   2003-05-14 14:05

This is perfectly fine combo of pieces. You may find the B45 Lyre somewhat resistant.

I am not sure its such a good thing to play on different mouthpieces for the A and one for the Bb horn.

Colour wise I tend to find the B45Lyre quite different from the B40 and you should consider maybe matching same mouthpiece design for each the b40 for both horns or the B45Lyre.

I would personally find it hard to switch from the A to the Bb knowing the mouthpieces react and work differently. Maybe look into a ligature as well that affords good response.

Just some observations from working in an orchestra.....

David Dow

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