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 Beginner Horns
Author: desaxguy 
Date:   2010-07-16 00:24

It has been a while since I have researched clarinets. I am in the process of making recommendations for my beginner clarinets at our local music store. Any insight and suggestions on the following brands for their student models would be helpful.

-Yamaha
-Selmer
-Armstrong
-Jupiter

I am concerned with the influx of Asian instruments in the beginner market. For argument sake, I know most of you will not recommend any student line models, but having to choose from the list above, what would be my best options. Moving up to the "intermediate" level instrument sometimes brings about another manufacturing sight - so if you can ALSO recommend a better instrument in the brands above, that would be appreciated as well. But I really need to stay in the beginner lines above to give parents an option to rent, but can then recommend the "step-up" when time comes to purchase an instrument. Any thoughts and suggestions will be much appreciated. Thank you.

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 Re: Beginner Horns
Author: GLHopkins 
Date:   2010-07-16 02:21

1. Yamaha
2. Jupiter

Forget Selmer and Armstrong

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 Re: Beginner Horns
Author: Bob Phillips 
Date:   2010-07-16 02:58

I've been stung with Jupiter.

I found the LeBlanc Bliss horns to be quite good: robust keywork, responsive. No chance to check their intonation.

Bob Phillips

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 Re: Beginner Horns
Author: MartyMagnini 
Date:   2010-07-16 03:15

Bliss
Ridenour

Both heads and shoulders above the others mentioned, IMO. If you MUST stay with one of the 4 you mentioned, then my recommendation would be the Yamaha. But trust me and try a Bliss or a Ridenour.

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 Re: Beginner Horns
Author: Katrina 
Date:   2010-07-16 03:32

Leblanc Bliss
Forte http://www.doctorsprod.com/store/comersus_viewItem.asp?idProduct=53

NAYY...

I tried both wood & plastic (hard rubber??) versions of the Bliss at the store where I teach and I was favorably impressed, particularly by the plastic one. The wood one had a buzzing sound (I assume because my mp was less than compatible) but the key work and general intonation were great. The plastic one was an all-around winner.

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 Re: Beginner Horns
Author: pewd 
Date:   2010-07-16 03:42

Standard beginner requirements around these parts, FWIW:

Buffet E-11 / Fobes 'Debut' Mouthpiece / Rovner 'Dark' ligature / Vandoren traditional cut reeds, #3.0

Local rental cost is about $40 month for the above.

- Paul
private teacher - Dallas, Texas


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 Re: Beginner Horns
Author: desaxguy 
Date:   2010-07-16 13:37

Thank you all for your recommendations. Unfortunately, I am bound by the brands mentioned above. I went to the store and tested most of these instruments, and I agree with Bob about Jupiters (at least their student model) and found intonation was already off with just the barrel and mp - not to mention then on the full instrument.

To all of those who really like the Leblanc Bliss models, how do you feel about the Vitos they make (model 7242) or their other student model, model 7250?

Thank you again for your help.

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 Re: Beginner Horns
Author: clarinetguy 2017
Date:   2010-07-16 15:56

Desaxguy, you asked about Vitos. I know there are various models and I'm not a Vito expert, but the ones I've seen I like. They seem to be well-made. I've had a few students play them in the last few years, and I'm impressed with their tone and intonation. The basic mouthpiece that comes with them isn't bad either.

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 Re: Beginner Horns
Author: Ursa 
Date:   2010-07-16 16:31

I haven't tried the Vito 7242, but have played the 7250. It was once sold as the Vito V-40, but later was marketed as the Leblanc 7250.

In any case, the 7250 plays very nicely. Unlike the other Vitos, it has a polycylindrical bore. The intonation, evenness of response, and refined tone make for a very pleasant clarinet. I did not try the included ebonite K10M mouthpiece.

The 7250 seems to have been discontinued, but some are still in stores. I was able to purchase one on clearance for $399 online.

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 Re: Beginner Horns
Author: Barry Vincent 
Date:   2010-07-16 17:26

Desaxguy, check out my Review of the Jupiter student clarinet. In my opinion the quality of this brand has improved considerably in recent times.

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