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 Vientos Vintage Ligature: Amazing.
Author: Paul Aviles 
Date:   2021-09-01 01:06
Attachment:  Vientos Vintage.jpg (83k)

I speak only of my work with Legere European cut reeds. I no longer have a frame of reference for cane reeds.

It is truly with a heavy heart that I find myself writing anything negative about this ligature. I have two. The first one was simply revelatory and makes almost undefinable improvements to my response and resonance. The problem is the second one. It hits slightly higher and not only does not have the same resonance but also seems to choke off the sound.

The main problem is that with a fixed diameter ligature you are literally stuck with one position with one mouthpiece (rather, mouthpiece/reed combination). That position either works for you or it doesn't. The first ligature I received sits really low and I had no great expectations for it just looking at it. However, the playing of it was a totally different story. Despite the fact that any other ligature on my mouthpiece requires being right up at the line of ligature, this low seated ligature just takes on a life of its own.......and I don't want to put the instrument down. It is that amazing.

I have found in the last year that plastic (or other such polymer products) seems to enhance the vibrations set off by the Legere plastic reeds. Thus I did originally expect good results with the Viento Vintage Cristaline. The draw back with the fixed size is that you cannot make any adjustments to position, and as it turns out that is important to the mouthpiece I currently use. I further make the assumption this is due to a purposeful dip in the table (the only thing that makes sense in this scenario).

So while I had avoided these fixed designs for a long time (ie. the Floran Poppa or the Bois) I am grateful to find one that works even though it turned out to be happenstance.

..................Paul Aviles

Post Edited (2021-09-18 02:56)

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 Re: Vientos Vintage Ligature: Amazing..and not so amazing
Author: Ed 
Date:   2021-09-01 03:53

Can you sand the inside a little, allowing it it slip down lower?

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 Re: Vientos Vintage Ligature: Amazing..and not so amazing
Author: Paul Aviles 
Date:   2021-09-01 18:08

Oh.........sorry I left out a lot while typing and wiping away tears.

So, I first assumed that the architecture of the ligature would make placement irrelevant. But I wanted one that would actually allow me to comfortably hold the reed on with my thumb while lowering the ligature into place (it's a bit tricky with the low one). Also I thought maybe holding the reed up higher (where all my other ligatures shine) might even be better for sound, etc.

I contacted Alejandro P. at Vientos to customize the size smaller. It is obvious that the dimensions I provided where NOT adequate because the new ligature is still not as small as I wanted. However I believe to get a higher one to work it would need to be up to the top of the line of ligature (even higher up than I'd requested). Maybe he would need the mouthpiece and a reed to do the job right. I'm not sending my best mouthpiece to Spain - sorry.

I have tried to use tape on the front of the mouthpiece to shore things up but that takes a lot away from the resonance that makes the ligature so great.

Maybe someone will make one out of this hard polymer that tightens with the Rovner style screw arrangement.

So much room in this plastic ligature market.............let's fill it folks!!!!

...................Paul Aviles

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 Re: Vientos Vintage Ligature: Amazing..and not so amazing
Author: cigleris 
Date:   2021-09-01 22:36

Paul try Carbonissimo. They have a stronger carbon fibre ligature and a softer carbon fibre ligature.

Peter Cigleris

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 Re: Vientos Vintage Ligature: Amazing..and not so amazing
Author: Paul Aviles 
Date:   2021-09-18 02:55

I have to return to this ligature but first a disclaimer:

[Gear will not impart a good, resonant tone if you don't already have it. In fact, having a solid standard sound is necessary to hear differences amongst clarinets or differences amongst other associated gear which can be quite subtle]

Now I want to gush.

This ligature is quite AMAZING. The problem I initially had with a "corrected size" version is that I quickly grabbed one of the larger, more rubbery mouthpiece patches to use as a shim underneath the ligature to get it to seat higher up the mouthpiece. I did not manage to get the ligature high enough and the rubbery material acted more as a damper to the ping that is the hallmark of this ligature. I was not being patient.

Solution number one:

I started stacking small sections of Scotch Plastic tape (NOT electrical tape.....totally different material) upon the top surface of the mouthpiece until the stack got the ligature with a Legere reed to sit just at the line of ligature. Once I achieved the right spot for my mouthpiece (I believe there is a dip in my table) the ping and power increased from the original sized ligature that grabs the reed all the way at the bottom (too low, but it worked). The truly amazing thing about the ligature is that it smooths out the timbre (or formants) from one register to another (even the notes from the "G" four ledger lines above the staff and higher became smoother and much less strident (sort of a hallmark of the Legere experience that I have gotten used to). The lack of constancy of sound from register to register on every other ligature only becomes apparent in comparison with the Vientos Cristiline. There is this hauntingly beautiful sound and response of which this constancy of timbre plays a key role.

For the second attempt at a "shim" I used a small section cut out of a Sterlite container lid (malleable translucent plastic). Though the plastic tape worked pretty well, the plastic shim had less of a damping effect and just made the ligature sing. I now suffer a little from what I call "The Red Shoes" syndrome and just don't want to put the clarinet down at all!!!!

I can see now through the use of the shims that Vientos would find it nearly impossible to get a custom size to fit exactly for those of us where the mouthpiece architecture requires a more specific spot for maximum performance. This will make the Cristiline ligature a bit of a project for some, however, I think the up side is so impactful that it is more than worth any possible extra effort to make the ligature work to its fullest potential.

Simply AMAZING !!!!!

....................Paul Aviles

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 Re: Vientos Vintage Ligature: Amazing.
Author: super20dan 
Date:   2021-09-18 17:11

too bad runyon has gone otb. they made plastic ligs . i tried on on my alto clarinet w/ legere and it worked and preformed well

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 Re: Vientos Vintage Ligature: Amazing..and not so amazing
Author: farabout 
Date:   2021-09-19 03:23

Paul, have you explored the BG Flex lig? I've got it very suitable in a combo with the Eur-cut-Legere reed & a crystal Pomarico Wiz mpc.

Post Edited (2021-09-19 04:34)

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 Re: Vientos Vintage Ligature: Amazing.
Author: Paul Aviles 
Date:   2021-09-19 07:08

Yes. The Flex is on a short list of non-plastic (non-polymer) ligatures that work quite well, particularly when left quite loose. That list includes BG Standard, Rovner Versa (flaps over metal insert), GF MX-03M, and the Vandoren Leather with the harder leather "plate" (black). The Flex is one of the best at this because of its "tacky" sort of material. It holds on fairly well as you remove or replace the mouthpiece.

But if you haven't tried the polymer ligatures (Luyben, Periera 3D, Gigliotti, Vientos Cristiline) with Legere, you're missing something special. It proves there is more than just the architecture involved here. The material is lending something more to the ability of the entire mouthpiece/reed system to resonate.

I can no longer speak to cane on this point since I gave up on that six years ago. But now I do not feel there is any compromise using plastic over cane.

..............Paul Aviles

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 Re: Vientos Vintage Ligature: Amazing.
Author: cigleris 
Date:   2021-09-19 10:59

I think material does affect the playing experience as you point out Paul so again perhaps consider the Carbonissimo ligatures. Carbon fibre has a real impact on the setup.

Peter Cigleris

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 Re: Vientos Vintage Ligature: Amazing.
Author: Paul Aviles 
Date:   2021-09-19 13:47

Ok, I may be a little reluctant over price on that one. But I also am not seeing the difference between the hard, unyielding aspect of carbon fiber vs. metal. Same thing with the Silversteins (of which I have about five). The Silversteins may look like string but they function like the ultimate metal ligature. They are quite wonderful with cane (which is why I have so many) but they do not function well with Legere (or rather it is a typical metal result.....damped; less overtones; dull by comparison to plastic ligatures).

I think I may wait for others to find whether carbon fiber works well with Legere and then I'll jump on that train late if that is the case. Also, since you can manipulate carbon fiber a bit more, I'd like to see one with the interior dual vertical rails in the Bonade style (like the Vientos). Not too much to ask?

..............Paul Aviles

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