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 Professional Eb Clarinet Recommendations
Author: AllenLin 
Date:   2017-12-13 11:33

Any Recommendation for an Eb Clarinet?
I'm a 4th year college music student looking to invest in an Eb clarinet. The one at our school is an old R-13 Buffet that doesn't meet my expectation nor any of our clarinet players' expectations. I do have some wiggle room budget wise, but definitely not for a Tosca Buffet clarinet. I know there was an existing post on this site, but I would like to get a more definitive perspective from others who have more experience than I do.

Some have recommended: Patricola, Yamaha, Selmer, and Buffet.

Please feel free to give me some recommended accessories that are definitely a must try/have for Eb clarinets!

I will definitely be investing in a Backun Barrel as well so please let me know what type of wood/size would be a good "standard."

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 Re: Professional Eb Clarinet Recommendations
Author: gwie 
Date:   2017-12-13 14:24

I acquired a Yamaha YCL-881 Eb clarinet for one of my students some years ago. In side-by-side comparisons, it edged out a Buffet RC Prestige Eb and a standard R-13 Eb when it came to response, intonation, and tone quality. At the time it was over twelve hundred dollars less than the RC as well. Not the case anymore, unfortunately.

I definitely prefer the tone of the RC model over the standard R-13, and it was pretty close to the 881. The Yamaha had better keywork, which I think was the final deciding factor.

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 Re: Professional Eb Clarinet Recommendations
Author: Ed Palanker 
Date:   2017-12-13 17:45

The only one that is best for you is the best one you try. Find a dealer that has several and try them or have several different dealers send you some. There is no other way to really tell.


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 Re: Professional Eb Clarinet Recommendations
Author: concertmaster3 
Date:   2017-12-13 19:01

I second the idea of trying out a few from different dealers.
Even if you don't purchase them, you can find out what you like, and what plays well for you.

With that said, I have a YCL-681 that I really like. Even timbre across the registers, very easy to play in tune and solid keywork. An 881 would have been nice, but wasn't available used when I found mine!

Ron Ford
Woodwind Specialist

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 Re: Professional Eb Clarinet Recommendations
Author: ClarinetRobt 
Date:   2017-12-13 20:21

Uebel will have a Superior Eb coming soon. I'm a fan of the brand.

Also Moe-Bleichner has a RZ Bohema Eb arriving this week - claim to have a 'warmer' sound than a typical Eb. They are handmade in Czech Rebublic and tested by Milan Rericha. Might be interesting to test drive one.


(Still wish Tom Ridenour would make an Eefer)

~Robert L Schwebel
Mthpc: Behn Vintage, Lig: Ishimori, Reed: Aria 4, Legere Euro Signature 3.75, Horns: Uebel Superior, Ridenour Lyrique

Post Edited (2017-12-13 23:56)

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 Re: Professional Eb Clarinet Recommendations
Author: JF Clarinet 
Date:   2017-12-13 20:52

I'll second concertmaster3 on the 681. I've played on a few other eefers, and the thing that has stood out most about my 681 is the wide range of tone colors. I've found a harder time playing anything that didn't sound aggressive on the
other Eb's that I've tried (a not very good selmer, and an rc, and a few others that I forget what they were).

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 Re: Professional Eb Clarinet Recommendations
Author: Ed 
Date:   2017-12-15 06:24

I don't know about newer models, but the older Selmers that I have played (60's era) have been terrific.

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 Re: Professional Eb Clarinet Recommendations
Author: Bob Bernardo 
Date:   2017-12-15 10:15

I really liked the Selmer, but it got ripped off. Played freer at the time than the Buffet's and better in tune. It cut through with a nice sound. I was an all Buffet player at that time so the Selmer was pretty special. I used a Pomarico mouthpiece. It was a very good setup.

Does Yamaha pro make an Eb? I'm not sure, but if they do don't rule them out.

Designer of - Vintage 1940 Cicero Mouthpieces and the La Vecchia mouthpieces

Yamaha Artist 2015

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 Re: Professional Eb Clarinet Recommendations
Author: Carcamalisio 
Date:   2017-12-15 10:29

selmer recital and buffet tosca are the best eb clarinets, there's no discussion. But if you can't afford them (they are both very expensive) yamaha 881 or 681 are good options, perhaps better ratio quality/price than RCs or R13s

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 Re: Professional Eb Clarinet Recommendations
Author: Kalashnikirby 
Date:   2017-12-15 19:46

There's a new Uebel Superior Eb clarinet, though not so widely available. But if it's anywhere near as good as the Bb version, it's definitely worth checking out. Howarth prices it between the a and Bb version.

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 Re: Professional Eb Clarinet Recommendations
Author: TomS 
Date:   2017-12-15 20:19

I settled on a Selmer Series 9 (made about 1968, I think) ... but I sold it needing some cash, some years ago. I tried all the major brands and fortunately found this old Selmer. When I decided to sell, it was snapped up in a heartbeat.

We may see an E-flat from Backun ...


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 Re: Professional Eb Clarinet Recommendations
Author: CapnCheapo 
Date:   2017-12-15 20:40

For many years, Patricola was the "sleeper" Eb clarinet. Performing at or beyond the level of anything out there for a fraction of the price. They seemed to have caught on to this fact, and are now almost double the price from a few years ago, but still very competitive. I have played orchestral, band, and clarinet choir music with this instrument and feel like it can handle anything I throw at it. The workmanship is absolutely first rate, and whenever I see the Patricola brothers at a convention, they insist on checking the instrument over and performing any minor repairs free of charge. So they have my highest recommendation.

Post Edited (2017-12-15 20:41)

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 Re: Professional Eb Clarinet Recommendations
Author: Hurstfarm 
Date:   2017-12-15 21:42

Whatever the instrument, ensuring it’s airtight and properly regulated is crucial for the Eb, which can be temperamental at the best of times. I’m happy with my newish second hand RC Prestige, with 2 front line mouthpieces which I pick according to the demands of the music. I did have a limited trial of an Uebel Superior which I’d definitely rate as a serious pro-level contender.

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 Re: Professional Eb Clarinet Recommendations
Author: Tom Puwalski 
Date:   2017-12-15 22:54

I just got a Yamaha 681ii. It plays way better than my 20 year old RC. The first thing you notice is the intonation is superior to the Buffet, the second thing you notice is that it has a beautiful sound all the way down to low E.

Tom Puwalski Former Principal Clarinetist U.S. Army Field Band, author of the Clarinetists Guide to Klezmer and Klezmer Boot Camp play a long. Yamaha Performing Artist.

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 Re: Professional Eb Clarinet Recommendations
Author: andy63 
Date:   2017-12-17 01:44

I have a Yamaha YCL 881 custom Eb ,for me it is by far the best Eb i have played.
i use a Backun Rose wood Barrel and Bell on it.
I did try quite a few other instruments before choosing the Yamaha.
I tried an RC Prestige and a couple of selmers and a YCL 681 that was also very good intonation wise.

I did like the Prestige but for me it was not as good over the whole range as the Yamaha In fact i tried three 881s and they where nearly identical in sound feeling and intonation.
I have never been a great fan of Yamaha i find there Bb clarinets to be a bit to predictable for my taste .
My Bb instruments are a Tosca and a Greenline RC.
But i do find he Yamaha “predictability” a big help on the Eb.
I still use allot of false fingerings mainly because of force of habit but most of the standard altissimo fingerings allso work just fine on the Yamaha ,more so than on any of the other Eb instruments i tried.

I use a vandoren M30 on my Eb with a 3.5 or 4 standard vandoren reed (The backun barrel has a groove to facilitate this )
On my Bbs i use a Vandoren BD5 also with a standard 3,5 or 4 Reed.
Using this setup i find the transition between Bb and Eb very easy as the two set ups feel very similar .For me The YCL 881 was a great choice.
good luck.

Buffet Tosca ,Buffet Rc Greenline ,Yamaha YCl-881 Eb

Post Edited (2017-12-17 01:45)

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