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 Profesional Eb Clarinet.
Author: Yador 
Date:   2018-01-18 04:38

Hello everyone,

I'm not an expert in Eb clarinets.
I come to you for advice.
I want to buy a professional Eb clarinet and before trying I would like to know your opinion.
My clarinets in Bb and A areBuffet RC Prestige.
I want to try the following models:
Selmer Recital.
Buffet Tosca.
Buffet RC Prestige.
Yamaha YCL 881

My priority is tuning. I need the instrument as finely tuned as possible.

Regards, and thank you very much.


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 Re: Profesional Eb Clarinet.
Author: NBeaty 
Date:   2018-01-18 05:00

I would offer this word of caution:

People will tell you that you need to try before you buy, which is true. You should make sure that the instrument sounds good and that there isn't anything with the tuning that is far off. However, learning to play the Eb well is not an overnight process and the amount of variability in tuning depending on reed/mouthpiece choice, voicing, and embouchure can be pretty huge. So I would be weary of buying an instrument because it's compensating well for some problem that may not be a problem after a bit of practice and getting comfortable with the Eb.

At the end of the day, you may end up with an instrument that's compensating for something that you don't need it to.

If possible, find someone who's Eb playing you respect that owns a good instrument that is willing to help you in your search. It will give you a good point of comparison.

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 Re: Profesional Eb Clarinet.
Author: JamesOrlandoGarcia 
Date:   2018-01-18 23:48

Add the Yamaha 681 to your list too. I actually like them better than the 881. I use my 681 professionally.

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 Re: Profesional Eb Clarinet.
Author: Yador 
Date:   2018-01-19 00:30

Thank you very much!
What sound differences do you find between yamaha and buffet?
Is it possible that the Yamaha sounds more like "clarinet"?
Is the YCL-681 better tuned than for example an RC prestige buffet?

A greeting!


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 Re: Profesional Eb Clarinet.
Author: Ebclarinet1 
Date:   2018-01-19 20:22

I play a Buffet Prestige and really like it. However, adding the Fobes Eb extension really improves the sound and intonation of the whole instrument. If you buy ANY Eb I would add it to your purchase. The biggest improvement is in the 12ths and the intonation of the low notes, which tend to be sharp without it.

Eefer guy

Reply To Message
 Re: Profesional Eb Clarinet.
Author: Johan H Nilsson 
Date:   2018-01-19 22:10

How can an extension improve the tuning of tones that it doesn't vent?

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 Re: Profesional Eb Clarinet.
Author: Tobin 
Date:   2018-01-20 03:55


How can an extension improve the tuning of tones that it doesn't vent?

The vibration of the air within the bore is subtle. Try swapping the bell of your horn with the bell of another of the same model -- there can easily be changes throughout the response of the instrument, not just the bell tones.

When you think about it -- adding the extension has changed the length of the column of air and changes (positive or negative) can be expected throughout. Just like when you cover the throat tones...covering holes no where near the area of the clarinet that the throat tones speak from, but receiving lower pitch and improved resonance.


Gnothi Seauton

Post Edited (2018-01-20 03:56)

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 Re: Profesional Eb Clarinet.
Author: Johan H Nilsson 
Date:   2018-01-21 03:33


That would essentially mean that the bell (and the hole on the Fobes extension) to some extent is venting the throat tones.

It is easy to test. Remove the bell, play a G4 and let your left palm cover and uncover the bottom end of the lower joint. This has much more effect than the Fobes extension possibly could.

When I try it on my Bb, the pitch of the G4 does not move a cent. The tone character changes a little though. I suppose this could be the high-frequency overtones that don't get killed by open tone holes now get killed by my hand.

To simulate the effect of the Fobes extension more realistically, you could keep the bell on and flip the E3 cup with your left hand. I tried it and again, no effect on pitch but a slight difference in character.

I did find a way to affect the pitch of the G4 using the lower joint tone holes. I turn the lower joint to disable the bridge to the upper joint. Covering all lower joint tone holes does not change pitch. But covering the Bb3 and A3 tone holes brings the pitch *up* 5 cents or so. Quite interesting. Somehow I manage to shorten the G4 wave. This is however, closer to the G4 hole than the Fobes extension.

Post Edited (2018-01-21 03:35)

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 Re: Profesional Eb Clarinet.
Author: andy63 
Date:   2018-01-22 23:07

Hi posted this a while back concearning Eb,s
I have a Yamaha YCL 881 custom Eb it is for me 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 (2018-01-22 23:12)

Reply To Message
 Re: Profesional Eb Clarinet.
Author: Yador 
Date:   2018-01-24 04:02

Thank you very much for your response, for now I have tried the E11 and the RC Prestige.
I need to try the RC and the Yamaha, I think the 681 is going to be a great choice for me and pretty well priced.
A greeting.
Thank you.


Reply To Message
 Re: Profesional Eb Clarinet.
Author: Yador 
Date:   2018-01-27 04:18

Hello, I am decided to purchase a Yamaha Eb clarinet.
Does anyone know the differences between YCL-681 II and YCL 881?
Thank you!


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