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 Are German and French cut reeds really very different
Author: kerryklari 
Date:   2021-09-07 13:01

I have just bought a very cheap (€155) "German System" clarinet to try out. I also bought, separately, a basic Yamaha German mouthpiece and a box of Thomann own-brand assorted German reeds. This is more about trying out the fingering than trying to capture some particular sound.

The clarinet arrived first. It included a mouthpiece and a single unbranded reed. The reed was noticeably different to the usual - it was longer and the extra length is all in the vamp. It's pretty much exactly the same size as a Bari synthetic reed. I've never encountered a German reed before so assumed this was standard.

My Yamaha mouthpiece and Thomann reeds have now turned up. The mouthpiece is a little different to a Yamaha 4C, but not by orders of magnitude. It's a little narrower an the tip and the bore might be slightly less (I can't measure it, it's stuck fast in the barrel of the cheap clarinet!). Differences at mouthpiece level are probably down to fractions of millimetres but I'm more surprised by the reeds. The visible difference between the German reeds and the other reeds I have are probably smaller than the differences between the other reeds, all of which are for Boehm mouthpieces. The tip of the German reed is identical in width to a Vandoren blue, though the Vandoren has a longer vamp and is maybe 1mm wider at the heel; a Rico Royal has a cut that's closer in shape to the German reed but it's a little different in other ways. The only difference I can see is that the tip seems a bit longer on the French reeds if I hold them back-to-back with the German one. The geometry of the German one and a Forestone Traditional I have is almost identical.

This is good news for me as it means I can use my existing reeds, at least for the time being - I have just bought a selection of plastic reeds that cost me more than the cheap clarinet, so a pity to waste them. It does lead me to wonder, though, what in general terms the actual differences are.

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 Topics Author  Date
 Are German and French cut reeds really very different  new
kerryklari 2021-09-07 13:01 
 Re: Are German and French cut reeds really very different  new
Paul Aviles 2021-09-07 15:54 
 Re: Are German and French cut reeds really very different  new
kerryklari 2021-09-07 17:04 
 Re: Are German and French cut reeds really very different  new
davidjsc 2021-09-07 20:06 
 Re: Are German and French cut reeds really very different  new
Chris P 2021-09-07 23:50 
 Re: Are German and French cut reeds really very different  new
SecondTry 2021-09-08 00:53 
 Re: Are German and French cut reeds really very different  new
Paul Aviles 2021-09-08 03:09 
 Re: Are German and French cut reeds really very different  new
Chris P 2021-09-08 19:33 
 Re: Are German and French cut reeds really very different  new
Paul Aviles 2021-09-09 00:01 
 Re: Are German and French cut reeds really very different  new
donald 2021-09-10 15:19 


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