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 What is up with Buffet Prestige pricing?
Author: m1964 
Date:   2019-04-10 17:13

Hi,
I always thought that Buffet Festival, Prestige R13 and Prestige RC were at a similar price level.

I looked at the Buffet website and the Festival is listed for $4,746. The R13 Prestige is $6,718.

Is the sound of the Prestige that much better comparing to the Festival?

***In Europe the price is the same.



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 Re: What is up with Buffet Prestige pricing?
Author: seabreeze 
Date:   2019-04-10 19:10

Buffet R13 Prestige clarinets are said to have been made from better quality (denser and closer to the heart?) wood that is aged longer and more carefully than than the wood found in the less expensive models. Even if this is true, of course, that fact would not account for the pricing disparity between models on the US market and the European one.



Post Edited (2019-04-11 00:28)

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 Re: What is up with Buffet Prestige pricing?
Author: dorjepismo 2017
Date:   2019-04-10 19:36

Howarth lists all three at the same price currently, at something less than your Festival price for export. Pricing in the U.S. has always been opportunistic.

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 Re: What is up with Buffet Prestige pricing?
Author: Tobin 
Date:   2019-04-10 20:23

M1964 — I have found Festivals to be much closer to the R13 price, and the Prestige to be in a higher price category.

I think I bought a Festival A for $2200 in 2000, back when Bb R13’s were still $1700-1900 horns. When I trailed several Festival Bb’s about five years ago they were not anywhere near $6K.

James

Gnothi Seauton

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 Re: What is up with Buffet Prestige pricing?
Author: m1964 
Date:   2019-04-11 16:38


dorjepismo ★2017 wrote:

"Howarth lists all three at the same price currently, at something less than your Festival price for export. Pricing in the U.S. has always been opportunistic."

Yes, I can see and compare the prices.

What I wanted to know if the Prestige (R13 or RC) sounds $2000 better then Festival.

Or, maybe it does when it is exported to the US!



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 Re: What is up with Buffet Prestige pricing?
Author: Steven Ocone 2017
Date:   2019-04-11 17:30

The Festival is different acoustically. Not better or worse sounding.

Steven Ocone
Ann & Steve's Music

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 Re: What is up with Buffet Prestige pricing?
Author: claralot 
Date:   2019-04-11 23:21

"The Festival is different acoustically. Not better or worse sounding."

Steven what differences do you hear, Festival vs. Prestige R13?

....Mike

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 Re: What is up with Buffet Prestige pricing?
Author: Tobin 
Date:   2019-04-12 05:38

Among other things, doesn’t the Fesirval have a higher-placed register vent than the R13?

James

Gnothi Seauton

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 Re: What is up with Buffet Prestige pricing?
Author: paulyb 
Date:   2019-04-12 14:21

According to this interview with chief members of the Buffet design team (in French), the Festival is an R13 with a longer bottom joint, raised low E and F toneholes, a new register key / hole, modified C#/G# tonehole, modified "G and A" holes, and a LH Eb key among other improvements. They also mention subsequent improvements but don't say precisely what they are.

http://rp-archivesmusiquefacteurs.blogspot.com/2015/03/2eme-partie-les-clarinettes-actuelles.html

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 Re: What is up with Buffet Prestige pricing?
Author: m1964 
Date:   2019-04-12 15:30

paulyb wrote:

> According to this interview with chief members of the Buffet
> design team (in French), the Festival is an R13 with a longer
> bottom joint, raised low E and F toneholes, a new register key
> / hole, modified C#/G# tonehole, modified "G and A" holes, and
> a LH Eb key among other improvements. They also mention
> subsequent improvements but don't say precisely what they are.
>
> http://rp-archivesmusiquefacteurs.blogspot.com/2015/03/2eme-partie-les-clarinettes-actuelles.html

I am not interested so much in technical details, I would like to know how the sound, response/resistance, tuning is on the Festival vs regular R13 and vs Prestige R13/RC.

I was thinking about going to the Buffet showroom but they have new clarinets and I am looking for a used one. I am not sure that the new Festival (or Prestige) would be the similar or even close to the instruments produced 10-20 years ago.

I would appreciate if anyone who has had the experience playing or even trying Festival and Prestige, could share it here.

Thanks

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 Re: What is up with Buffet Prestige pricing?
Author: paulyb 
Date:   2019-04-12 17:07

There are some comparisons in this thread if you've not seen it already:

http://test.woodwind.org/clarinet/BBoard/read.html?f=1&i=300968&t=300946



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 Re: What is up with Buffet Prestige pricing?
Author: m1964 
Date:   2019-04-12 17:48

paulyb wrote:

> There are some comparisons in this thread if you've not seen it
> already:
>
> http://test.woodwind.org/clarinet/BBoard/read.html?f=1&i=300968&t=300946
>

OK
Thanks a lot - I did see it at one point but just re-read it.

Would be good to hear from another player too, their perception because so many things also depend on MP+reed+ligature set up.
What works for one person may not work for another.

Unfortunately, when buying a used clarinet, there not too many choices.

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 Re: What is up with Buffet Prestige pricing?
Author: Steven Ocone 2017
Date:   2019-04-12 23:05

Try new first, then look for a used one.

Steven Ocone
Ann & Steve's Music

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 Re: What is up with Buffet Prestige pricing?
Author: Tobin 
Date:   2019-04-12 23:53

I had a beautiful Festival A purchased in 2000. Played fantastically. On a couple of occasions I loaned it to friends, much more successful performers than I who were in an emergency, and each one asked that I let them know when/if I was going to sell it.

About six years ago I decided to find a Festival Bb to match it. I ordered three from a service (not worth bothering to mention who). None of the three were anything like the A. A month later I attended a Frank Cohen Masterclass at VCU, and another service had many (12? 16?) R13's and Festivals on hand to try. Nothing that matched what I had, tonally or responsively, in any way.

I ended up buying Yamaha CSG's that were the best A/Bb match I've ever had. The Festival A went to a student who is now at Oberlin.

James

Gnothi Seauton

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 Re: What is up with Buffet Prestige pricing?
Author: Micke Isotalo 2017
Date:   2019-04-16 16:13

Last July (2018) I made a comparison of the sound between a new Festival Bb and a new RC Prestige Bb.

The results below are based on recordings of the entire chromatic scale on each clarinet (up to d#6, or d#3 as in my notations below) and then a comparison by a playback of three notes at a time in instant succession on the Festival and the RC Prestige respectively (that way the sound of each one stays fresh in memory).

Please note that the "accessories" (mouthpiece, etc) I used were quite out of the norm, so the results may be very different with another setup.

Both clarinets were played with a PlayEasy A' German bore mouthpiece, Pilgerstorfer Concerto #3 reed, BG Tradition ligature and a Wurlitzer Reform Boehm A-clarinet barrel (!). ”F” stands for Festival, ”P” for Prestige.

1 e–f#: F less ″vibrant″ (that's good in my opinon, since I favor a smooth sound)
2 g-a: F less nasal
3 a#-c: F a lot less nasal
4 c#1-d#1: F more full and a lot less nasal
5 e1-f#1: P more full and solid
6 g1-a1: Equal
7 a#1- c2: Equal
8 c#2- d#2: F less shrill, steadier
9 e2-f#2: P a little bit less edgy
10 g2- a2: P a little bit less edgy
11 a#2-c3: Equal
12 c#3-d#3: Equal
* Summary: The Festival wins 5 rounds (mainly at the lower range), the Prestige 3, 4 were equal.

However, the best advice as always is to try out for yourself. Your results would be different from mine, even with the same setup.



Post Edited (2019-04-16 16:35)

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 Re: What is up with Buffet Prestige pricing?
Author: m1964 
Date:   2019-04-16 16:44

Micke,

Thanks a lot for replying to me, you are absolutely right I would need to compare two by myself to determine what is "better".
May just follow advice of Steven and go to Buffet showroom one day.

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 Re: What is up with Buffet Prestige pricing?
Author: clarnibass 
Date:   2019-04-20 14:54

Acoustic design aside, the Festival and Prestige models seem to have the same mechanical design and build quality level (e.g. metal tenon sleeves, LH Ab/Eb lever, etc.).

Neither is better or worse. Several top pros here chose the Festival after trying all Buffet models.



Post Edited (2019-04-22 09:45)

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 Re: What is up with Buffet Prestige pricing?
Author: DavidBlumberg 
Date:   2019-04-22 06:25

Much more dense wood - I've always preferred the Prestige of the Buffet line.

http://www.SkypeClarinetLessons.com


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 Re: What is up with Buffet Prestige pricing?
Author: GBK 
Date:   2019-04-22 06:55

DavidBlumberg wrote:

> Much more dense wood - I've always preferred the Prestige of
> the Buffet line.



Which is exactly the same wood used in making the R13s of the 60's and early 70's.

...GBK

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 Re: What is up with Buffet Prestige pricing?
Author: donald 
Date:   2019-04-22 14:55

GBK - that may be so in many cases but not all. My 1963 R13 was passed on to me by a retired pro player who studied with Stubbins, and played the same B flat clarinet for his entire career. It was selected in 1963 when he was studying in Michigan.
This instrument has an amazing sound, really the only downside to it is that the left hand e-b and f-c 12ths are much wider than my other (more modern) clarinets, and that the keys are ridiculously worn- more so than any clarinet I've seen (even instruments from the 1880s). The sound is incredible - especially the "short tube" notes.
However, the wood is not at all dense, or "super shiny/smooth" on the bore surface. It's quite grainy and much lighter than my Festival B flat.
Some years ago I met with a well respected US college teacher who claimed that "the best barrels had a grainy bore" and that she looked for this when selecting barrels.
Like Mr Blumberg I find myself prefering the Prestige and Festival clarinets made from the denser wood when I try out clarinets, but it is obviously not always that simple, and can't necessarily explain the excellent instruments Buffet made in earlier years.
dn

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