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 Series 13?
Author: Ben Shaffer 
Date:   2017-03-20 17:52

I'd like to get a new VanDoren M13 Mouthpiece.
As I understand there are several versions , a "series 13" MP available in this model that pitches at a440 as well as one that does not.
That said what would be the pitch of a non series 13 M15?
I play in a church Band composed of brass as well as the standard woodwinds. Would I want the series 13 to be in tune with the group or the non series 13, whatever that one would pitch at?
To be honest I'm not sure of the pitch of the band :(
Ben Shaffer

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 Re: Series 13?
Author: RKing 
Date:   2017-03-20 18:41

IIRC, the M13 only comes in a "Series 13" (A440) length. The M15 can be had in both Standard (A442) and Series 13 length. I have both M15s and an M13 - and I can play any of these in tune with the band as long as I pair them with the proper barrel on my Buffet R13.

If I use the standard Buffet 66mm barrel, I am sharp with the Standard M15 and am spot on with either Series 13 mouthpiece. From the Vandoren literature, I think this is why the Series 13 was developed.

But if I use a 66mm Chadash barrel or a 66mm Backun Fatboy, I will be spot on with the Standard M15 and flat with either Series 13 mouthpiece.

I hope that doesn't sound confusing, but you have to know what pitch you are playing right now with the gear you have. If you are using a standard mouthpiece and have to pull it out slightly to be in tune with the band, then the Series 13 would probably work fine. But if you are right on the money with a standard mouthpiece and your usual barrel, then the Series 13 will probably be a tick flat.

Hope this helps,

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 Re: Series 13?
Author: Chris P 
Date:   2017-03-20 19:11

The standard (non 13 Series) will allow you far more flexibility than the 13 Series which can be very restrictive when you're playing in a freezing cold church.

As clarinets like to play flat when you don't want them to, pick a mouthpiece that will allow you to play at pitch or allow you to push sharp as you can always flatten a sharp note much easier than sharpening a flat note.


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 Re: Series 13?
Author: kdk 2017
Date:   2017-03-20 19:12

The Series 13 mouthpieces are designed to play lower than the Traditional series Vandoren mouthpieces. Since you don't know where the band tunes, I suppose there isn't a lot of attention given to establishing a starting pitch level. My suspicion is that a non-pro band of this kind, even if it did tune carefully at the beginning of a playing session, would tend to be sharp to A440. So the most likely answer is that a Traditional VD would come closer to the band's general pitch or would at least be a little sharper. You can always come down by pulling the barrel or mouthpiece out a little. You can't get sharper if you're flat with everything tightly together without changing your equipment.

So, bottom line, for tuning purposes you're probably safer with the Traditional model. One test might be to find where your current mouthpiece tunes both on a tuner (does it tune ab over 440 with everything together?) and in the band (are you normally flat to the band?). If you're in tune with A440 on a tuner and are flat to the band, obviously buy the sharper model. If you're usually sharp and need to pull out significantly (>1.5 mm), maybe the Series 13 would work better.


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 Re: Series 13?
Author: Caroline Smale 
Date:   2017-03-21 02:32

It's a bit of a fallacy to say that a mouthpiece "plays" at 440 or 442 etc.

The pitch that ultimately comes out of the instrument is a combination of all the acoustical factors of both the total instrument and of the player, e.g. embouchure and oral cavity.

All that can really be said is that, all other things being equal, a series 13 mouthpiece will play flatter than a non-series 13 one.

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 Re: Series 13?
Author: Johan H Nilsson 
Date:   2017-03-21 03:35

The choice also affects the internal tuning of the clarinet.

There are some instrument models, typically the ones that are labeled A=442, where the upper 1st register tones are somewhat flat with a standard Vandoren mouthpiece. With a 13-series mouthpiece, those tones will be very flat. The Selmer Privilege is a good example.

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 Re: Series 13?
Author: Chris P 
Date:   2017-03-21 16:11

The volume of the mouthpiece bore and tonechamber will have an effect on the overall pitch.


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