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 Buffet Legende test
Author: tommo84 
Date:   2017-12-08 16:51

for all people interested, I found this nice video where Nicolas Baldeyrou plays the new Buffet Legende

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=srxvqnPyDyU

:)

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 Re: Buffet Legende test
Author: J. J. 
Date:   2017-12-10 21:22

Forget the clarinet for one second: This is incredible, incredible playing. Thanks for posting.

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 Re: Buffet Legende test
Author: Johan H Nilsson 
Date:   2017-12-13 01:49

Noticeable is that he uses a Vandoren B40 profile 88 mouthpiece and a Vandoren V12 strength 3.0 reed. A setup that average Joe uses in the local band.

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 Re: Buffet Legende test
Author: inacin 
Date:   2017-12-13 02:12

Maybe the B40 is a terrific and underrated mouthpiece. Personally, I've always come back to it after trying other mouthpieces and it's what I al playing nowadays (not as well af mr. Baldeyrou, of course. Bravissimo for him!!!)

C/ Javalambre 21, 2 D
44003 Teruel
Spain

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 Re: Buffet Legende test
Author: Kalashnikirby 
Date:   2017-12-13 02:53

Really awesome playing. It's interesting that he has such a clear and focused tone on this rather "soft" setup, maybe this has something to do with the new bore design too??? I'd have expected the Legende to sound warmer, or maybe that's just him, but this brighter sound suits the Carmen Fantasy very well anyways.

If I understand correctly, the Legende is a premium version of the Tradition, boasting gold-plated posts and naturally aged wood.
Surely it is a fine clarinet, though I wonder why it retails at 5,4k€ here in Europe, when an Oscar Adler 912S, which has the very same gold-plate upgrade, while the rest is rhodium-plated, and comes with a unique high-quality case, costs 1,4k less. Adler is a relatively familiy business, so they can't nearly produce as cost-effectively as Buffet - I just don't see what the additional 1,4k go into, but I've already made the same experience with the Tradition vs. Uebel Superior (the Tradition is a good horn and would be great if it sold at price like Yamaha's CSVR, but it's 3,7k instead....)

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 Re: Buffet Legende test
Author: tommo84 
Date:   2017-12-13 11:57

I posted it mainly for the playing :)

In my opinion it is one of the best examples of the "french" sound and style of playing.
Agile, brilliant, "loud", clear....

very different from the typical German or American sound.

about the mouthpiece, myself I use the B40 with 3 and 3.5 reeds.
It produces a very mellow a full sound, even with a "light" set up.
what it lacks in my opinion is some dexterity in the staccato.
but compared to the BD5 that I use also, it is much more warm and full :)

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 Re: Buffet Legende test
Author: Kalashnikirby 
Date:   2017-12-13 19:30

You're right, this is a true "french" sound - I like it.
I was just so inclined to comment on the instrument because of the thread title ;)

Is the B40 very different from the B45? I wasn't particularly fond of the latter.



Post Edited (2017-12-13 19:33)

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 Re: Buffet Legende test
Author: tommo84 
Date:   2017-12-13 20:02

the B45 is more open and more bright sounding compared to the B40.

think of the B40 as of a M30 with a rounder sound, less agile staccato, and possibility of playing it with reeds number 3

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 Re: Buffet Legende test
Author: gatto 
Date:   2017-12-13 21:51

I guess the only difference between the B45 und the B40 is the wider tip rail of the B40, which produces a darker sound. It seems to be quite popular, even among professionals.

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 Re: Buffet Legende test
Author: gatto 
Date:   2017-12-13 22:01

>If I understand correctly, the Legende is a premium version of the Tradition, boasting gold-plated posts and naturally aged wood. Surely it is a fine clarinet, though I wonder why it retails at 5,4k€ here in Europe,

The same holds for the Tosca. I cannot see why it costs about 1.500 Euro more than a Prestige. When I compared a Tosca with 2 RC Prestiges, I could not see any difference in the wood quality or in the polish of the bore. Maybe the keywork of the Tosca is a little bit more fancy. And there is the low-F correction, something which the RC Prestige does not need. Maybe half of the price difference would be understandable, but in my opinion not *that* difference.

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 Re: Buffet Legende test
Author: Klose 2017
Date:   2017-12-14 00:31

Quote:

The same holds for the Tosca. I cannot see why it costs about 1.500 Euro more than a Prestige. When I compared a Tosca with 2 RC Prestiges, I could not see any difference in the wood quality or in the polish of the bore. Maybe the keywork of the Tosca is a little bit more fancy. And there is the low-F correction, something which the RC Prestige does not need. Maybe half of the price difference would be understandable, but in my opinion not *that* difference.


This is definitely a marketing strategy of buffet but RC Prestige also needs F correction, particularly on the A.

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 Re: Buffet Legende test
Author: gatto 
Date:   2017-12-14 00:52

>RC Prestige also needs F correction, particularly on the A.

I do not say that the low-F on the RC Prestige is in tune; sure, it is too flat. But in my opinion it is better than Tosca or Legende with low-F correction.

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 Re: Buffet Legende test
Author: clarnibass 
Date:   2017-12-14 08:37

>> I cannot see why it costs about 1.500 Euro more than a Prestige. <<

Differences in prices come mostly from marketing and manufacturing costs. It is not really possible to know. For example some mentioned gold plated posts. It is entirely possible that a model with gold plated posts will be cheaper than one without, even made by the same company.

What adds most to cost, except any marketing reason, is expenses. One model might use slightly different parts that require their own longer machining time. Or maybe need an extra person, or a worker with a higher paycheck. Paychecks are often one of the main costs of many product.

R13, RC, Festival, plus some other models are mostly the same. The Tosca is more different in the shape of the parts. The R13 alone probably sells far more than the Tosca. Obviously a part (e.g. a key) that goes into several models, each possibly being sold more than the Tosca, is going to cost less than the same key for the Tosca.

These are not "attractive" reasons for musicians to try to understand, so basically no company uses them in their marketing.

I'm only guessing but I don't think marketing plays a huge part in clarinet prices, or at least when compared with some other "products" (like art, software, etc.).

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 Re: Buffet Legende test
Author: Hurstfarm 
Date:   2017-12-14 22:41

Buffet seems to be evolving a 3-tier marketing/product strategy for professional instruments. The R13 and RC are the "base" professional models, with the standard 17 key, 6 ring configuration. The respective R13 and RC "Prestige" models get various upgraded details and a LH lever key. At the same level they are joined by the similar spec but different bore Vintage, Festival and Tradition models. At the premium level, the Tosca belongs to the R13 family, the Devine to the RC and the new Legende is a premium version of the Tradition - which suggests they think they're onto something with the Tradition. The 3 premium models offer a variety of detail upgrades from the "Prestige" level, and get redesigned, sleeker 19 key, 6 ring keywork including the low F correction key.

I've tried various new Buffet instruments over the years, and although I happily play their Eb and bass clarinets I have been steadfastly non-Buffet for my standard clarinets. The Legende is the first I have come across that might change that. I expected it to be nice, but that playing it would simply re-confirm my satisfaction with my current instrument, as has always been the case before. I had a surprise. With the right mouthpiece it was impressively accurate in intonation across the range, tolerant of a wide dynamic range with little effect on pitch, very even in resistance in moving between registers, and astonishingly flexible in playing pianissimo in the altissimo register. I'm not overly keen on the rose gold "bling" bits or the high price, so I compared it with a couple of Traditions, but there was no doubt that the Legende (or that instrument at least) was better. If you have the budget and can find one, it's worth a try.

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 Re: Buffet Legende test
Author: Kalashnikirby 
Date:   2017-12-15 00:49

Thanks for your take on this clarinet.
Did it feel very different, was the keywork of better quality?
For 5,7k, you can already buy from one of the smaller makers here in Germany, who usually age their wood for 10 years, besides offering impeccable workmanship.

That being said, I already liked the Tradition in that it'd be a Buffet I'd consider buying (of course only for the price of the RC, because it didn't offer better quality)

Sorry I'm repeating myself regarding this pricing issue - I just cannot wrap my head around how they're able to get away with it!



Post Edited (2017-12-15 00:51)

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 Re: Buffet Legende test
Author: seabreeze 
Date:   2017-12-15 02:07

Hurstfarm,

Can you say specifically how the Legende was better than the Tradition? Better sound, larger dynamic range, easier to voice, better intonation, more even keywork, smoother across wide intervals, or what?

Buffet does claim that the Legende is a new model, not just a boutique version of the Tradition.

In Germany, Thomann is advertising a remarkably good price on this model.



Post Edited (2017-12-15 02:44)

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 Re: Buffet Legende test
Author: gatto 
Date:   2017-12-15 02:58

@Hurstfarm

I am wondering why the Tradition is considered being on the same level as the Prestige. I know, the price is the same. But what about the typical Prestige features: Undyed wood? Metal tenon rings? What makes the Tradition belonging to a higher quality level than an R13 or RC?

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 Re: Buffet Legende test
Author: gatto 
Date:   2017-12-15 03:06

@Kalashnikirby

Do you suppose that Buffet is using wood which is aged far less than 10 years? One should also take into account that Grenadilla is also aged by the importer (which for Europe sits in Hamburg).

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 Re: Buffet Legende test
Author: Hurstfarm 
Date:   2017-12-15 04:14

Hi Gatto, the Tradition shares some of the features of the prestige models, like the metal tenon rings, LH lever key and GT/cork pads. Hole placings are based on the Tosca.

Seabreeze/Kalashnikirby - the Tosca-style keywork felt slightly better placed and sleeker than the standard Buffet offering. In terms of what else made the Legende "better", it was tiny incremental differences for things like evenness of response across the registers, stability of pitch across the dynamic range, consistency of intonation between alternative fingerings, quality of throat notes etc. However, while the keywork is obviously different, these other factors might just reflect the fact that I got a remarkably well set-up Legende to test; not necessarily general or consistent differences between the two models.

Buffet market their clarinets a bit like models of cars, with tempting options offered to encourage customers to pay higher prices. Are they worth the money? The only way to find out is to try different instruments and make up your own mind!

Incidentally, my testing also included a selection of other instruments: Yamaha's CSG III and Artist models, a Selmer Privilege and an Uebel Superior - all great instruments, but to my surprise I liked the Legende more.

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 Re: Buffet Legende test
Author: seabreeze 
Date:   2017-12-15 08:57

I agree that Balderou's playing here is solidly within the French tradition of vibrant sonority and ease of production, but he is evolving that approach with a greater dynamic range and a heftier, more substantial tonal presence that is less nasal than the older French. No doubt the Legende is offering him some help in attaining that goal. Two posters mentioned that the Tradition and Legende can handle "loud" quite well (along with very soft and everything in between.) Buffet probably knows exactly what it is doing in designing its latest instruments to hold the sound well at all dynamic levels and to add a layer of substance to thicken the timbre a little, reduce stridency, and still retain an attractive, controllable tonal shape. I would be willing to pay for those features rather than the multi-hue color arrangement of the metal.



Post Edited (2017-12-15 18:01)

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 Re: Buffet Legende test
Author: Kalashnikirby 
Date:   2017-12-15 10:34

gatto wrote wrote:

> Do you suppose that Buffet is using wood which is aged far less than 10 >years?

The majority of their wood is immediatly dried in a kiln which I believe to affect the tonal charecteristics negatively. On the other hand, I've heard that some retailers offer wood aged up to 10 years already, but with a matching price, I suppose.
It's understandable though that the more carefully stored wood is used only for the higher-end models - with their weekly output, how many tons would Buffet have to keep in stock?

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 Re: Buffet Legende test
Author: tommo84 
Date:   2017-12-15 14:10

I have switched last year to buffet Tradition after 3 years on CSG.
What impressed me was the easy of sound in all register and volumes, together with a very good tuning.


I have chosen my Tradition between several Buffets models, from prestiges to Divines.
No one offered me the same flexibility and confort of playing.

Construction wise, the Tradition is similar to the Prestige for the mechanics and pads, it lacks the metal tenon caps ( which for me is a plus, not a minus) and the wood is stained.
The logo is engraved like the Selmers and not printed like standard buffets, meaning that it can be re-painted easily.

The Tosca I never get the keywork, for my hands it feels very odd.

The Devine is a beautiful clarinet, but for me too expensive. It is resonant, light, super well responsive, perfectly in tune.

but in the end the Tradition is a very good clarinet. If you look at the features you may think it is overpriced, but if you close you eyes and think only at the feeling of playing it, it is better than a Prestige.

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 Re: Buffet Legende test
Author: gatto 
Date:   2017-12-16 14:17

> The majority of their wood is immediatly dried in a kiln

I do not understand this. Can you elaborate on that, please?

1. What does "immediately" mean? How long was the wood aged before? Either in Buffet's company or before at the importers company.

2. What does "the majority" mean? Is this model dependent? (Wood for the top models is not?)

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 Re: Buffet Legende test
Author: Kalashnikirby 
Date:   2017-12-17 03:35

Sorry, I should've clarified: While the wood needs to be dried before being processed, or as Yamaha puts it
"Both natural drying and kiln drying are used", kiln drying speeds up this process significantly. I should've said: It's in a kiln as soon as possible, unlike completely naturally aged wood - some makers even have billets that are 25 years old. My knowledge about when exactly the wood is processed into billets and how long they are stored before production is too small, but IME "natural" wood makes a better clarinet, though I cannot determine why.
It's relatively easy to discern the wood qualities among Buffets, the Prestige series feature the better, unstained wood, while everything below is stained, mostly to cover up imperfections. One could still select from a number of RC clarinets and pick one of a relatively good quality, but they certainly won't waste their finest billets on these.

Some of these statements are suppositions, as Buffet is rather secretive about how the wood was selected and processed for each model, but I'm pretty sure that kiln-drying and staining are no marks of quality.

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