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 Alto Clarinet mouthpiece
Author: Gene 
Date:   2020-03-11 03:48

I'd be interested in your opinions on different mouthpieces or reviews ,i'm looking to upgrade seriously but not sure what to go with.

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 Re: Alto Clarinet mouthpiece
Author: Djudy 
Date:   2020-03-12 03:26

me too !





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 Re: Alto Clarinet mouthpiece
Author: johng 2017
Date:   2020-03-12 06:24

I like the Grabner alto mouthpiece.

John Gibson, Founder of JB Linear Music, www.music4woodwinds.com

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 Re: Alto Clarinet mouthpiece
Author: jdbassplayer 
Date:   2020-03-12 16:54

For stock mouthpieces I liked the Hite the best. The facing on most alto mouthpieces is too short for my taste unfortunately. I did not like the Grabner or the Fobes for this reason. On bass clarinet I use a modified B50, but I can’t find anything like it for alto clarinet. My current mouthpiece is an old unmarked mouthpiece that happens to play really well. As soon as someone makes an alto mouthpiece with a long facing and open tip like the B50 I’m getting it.

-Jdbassplayer

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 Re: Alto Clarinet mouthpiece
Author: Daniel Frazelle 
Date:   2020-03-12 20:39

Best mouthpiece I’ve ever played was a Grabner Zinner-based model. I don’t know if they’re still available. I do think that the Hite remains a solid option.

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 Re: Alto Clarinet mouthpiece
Author: Jeroen 
Date:   2020-03-16 14:46

I have a Vandoren B44 that came with my alto (Bundy). Not bad at all.
Later I tried some other Vandorens but I have choosen a modern "Standard" Selmer mpc. I found the Selmer gives more focus and resonance in the throat register. The Vandorens sounded a bit airy to me.

The store told me that Selmer used to make a wide range of alto mpcs (e.g. C*, C**, D, E, F) that were popular with good alto players. But the store can not order these anymore. Unfortunately now only 1 alto mpc is available: this "Standard" mpc is however worth trying it. It is unlabeled but I guess the facing is about the same as the C*. Here is where I bought it:
https://www.vangorp.nl/product/selmer-standard-alt-klarinet

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 Re: Alto Clarinet mouthpiece
Author: Djudy 
Date:   2020-03-16 19:52

This seems to be the same one and is labeled C*, available from Woodbrass in France

https://www.woodbrass.com/vents/clarinettes/accessoires+clarinettes/becs+clarinettes/becs+clarinette+alto





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 Re: Alto Clarinet mouthpiece
Author: SonicManEXE 
Date:   2020-03-17 06:52

My university owns a Series 9 alto, and it has a 4C (don't know who thought that was a good idea) and a C**. I also use the C** for contrabass. It's a little more open than the C*, and it does a great job being flexible in tone and especially pitch, considering the instrument I play is not in the best of condition.

Jared
Ft. Lauderdale & Tampa, FL

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 Re: Alto Clarinet mouthpiece
Author: r small 
Date:   2020-03-17 17:34

I was on the hunt for an alto a while back and had one shipped to me on trial. The horn didn't pan out but the Clark Fobes mpc. that came with it was excellent.

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 Re: Alto Clarinet mouthpiece
Author: Ebclarinet1 
Date:   2020-03-17 19:59

I use the Grabner alto (Zinner model) on alto most of the time but have two Hites that both work very well. A good mouthpiece can really affect the sound on alto, delivering it from a wimpy thing to one that has plenty of sound over its whole range.

Eefer guy

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 Re: Alto Clarinet mouthpiece
Author: Chris_C 2017
Date:   2020-03-17 21:17

On my Bundy I use the B44 that came with it when I bought it. I did buy a 5RV and used it for a year or two but have gone back to the B44. I find the reeds are much more critical than the mouthpiece, and am still in the search for the perfect one... I've tried dozens of makes and strengths (including alto sax reeds) and my preference varies all the time. It seems much more difficult to get a mouthpiece/reed combination that works through the whole range of the instrument than is the case for a Bflat for Eflat.

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 Re: Alto Clarinet mouthpiece
Author: NOLA Ken 
Date:   2020-03-19 00:45

Gene - I second Chris C's comment about the difficulty of finding the right mouthpiece/reed combination compared to the Bb soprano clarinet. And you don't say what make of alto clarinet you are playing, which is the third part of the mix. I'm no pro (a returning Bb soprano player who decided to pick up the alto on the side) with an overhauled vintage swan neck Leblanc alto with an especially stuffy lower joint in the mid range. I've been through twelve different vintage, stock and custom mouthpieces (including all of those mentioned above - most of which I did not like) and more types of reeds than I can keep track of. And which one works best seems to keep changing. I've found wide variation in how the different mouthpieces play. I can say that for me the Fobes 10k Zinner model and the Grabner Zinner model (which has been discontinued) have generally worked out far better than anything else. But they are definitely not cheap. I've also found that for me on an alto there is a tremendous difference between how a Rovner Light alto ligature and a traditional metal ligature play, with the metal ligature sounding much more focused and resonant to my ears. My personal preferences in reeds have run to the Fibercell Premium alto sax and bass clarinet reeds - I have yet to find an alto clarinet or Legere reed that I like on my alto (although I play Legeres on my Bb most of the time). Today the Fobes mouthpiece with a strenth 3 Fibercell Premium bass clarinet reed sounds great to me across the entire range - lots of resonance, clears the stuffyness right up and tunes well (another reputed problem with the alto). But who knows what I will find tomorrow. Over my lifetime I have played Bb soprano, contra alto and bass clarinets (now alto), as well as a brief stint on bari sax. And I can firmly state that this alto clarinet is the most fickle instrument I have ever played when it comes to reeds and mouthpieces. Some good suggestions above, but you may still end up experimenting a lot.

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 Re: Alto Clarinet mouthpiece
Author: Simon Aldrich 
Date:   2020-03-19 05:41

I was in my local wind shop the other day and noticed Vandoren has come out with a BD5 mouthpiece for alto clarinet (basset horn).

Simon

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 Re: Alto Clarinet mouthpiece
Author: Gene 
Date:   2020-03-20 01:44

I play a Boosey and Hawkes 1-10 alto it has the double vent on a rocker arm.I get a descent sound but looking for better.I play a Clarke & Fobes from about 10 years ago I bought .using a F.L. lig and Legere signature series alto sax reed 2.5.You can here a sample if you lookup on youtube alto clarinet Oblivion
https://youtu.be/eqhroPARkxM. Not sure what the the tip opening is but hopeing to save up for the 1.6 tipped one.

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 Re: Alto Clarinet mouthpiece
Author: NOLA Ken 
Date:   2020-03-20 05:48

LOL. Hell Gene, if I could sound that good I wouldn't change a thing. Very nice.

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 Re: Alto Clarinet mouthpiece
Author: Erez Katz 
Date:   2020-06-19 13:02

My alto is an old Leblanc and I tried it with a few mouthpieces, with varying results.
It was usable with the Vito that came with it, though I didn't like the tone. I had poor results with a Vandoren B44 and even worse with an old Selmer C*.

It then occurred to me to ask Eddie Gofman to experiment with the Selmer. He copied the Vito facing and then tweaked it further.

I think it came out rather well:
https://youtu.be/YjCzcPyxG9c



Post Edited (2020-06-20 19:15)

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 Re: Alto Clarinet mouthpiece
Author: ruben 
Date:   2020-06-19 13:15

Vandoren B40 for alto clarinet; reliable, good and not too expensive. Oriobably half the price of some of the other mouthpieces mentioned on this thread.

rubengreenbergparisfrance@gmail.com
JL-Clarinette

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 Re: Alto Clarinet mouthpiece
Author: Johan H Nilsson 
Date:   2020-06-20 18:02

I use the Vandoren B40 and J&D Hite. Not very different.

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 Re: Alto Clarinet mouthpiece
Author: DNBoone 
Date:   2020-06-20 20:42

I just found something that was nice quality and sent it to Brad Behn to be refinished.

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 Re: Alto Clarinet mouthpiece
Author: EbClarinet 
Date:   2020-06-27 03:29

The mouth piece is 1 upgrade, but with alto clarinet u've got consider the neck, reeds and ligature as well. The best sounding alto clarinets are Selmer.

https://www.tapatalk.com/groups/mbtldsongministry/

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 Re: Alto Clarinet mouthpiece
Author: Chris P 
Date:   2020-06-28 13:11

I bought a Pomarico crystal alto mouthpiece to use on basset horn as I use crystals on all other clarinets, but it plays as sharp as anything and I need to use the longest crook pulled out by a lot to bring the pitch down on both basset horn and alto clarinet (both Buffet RC Prestige basset horns and Yamaha alto clarinets have almost exactly the same diameter bore).

The stock Vandoren B40 supplied with the Buffet is right on the money on both.

Chris.

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 Re: Alto Clarinet mouthpiece
Author: JTJC 
Date:   2020-09-10 19:30

I know the question has already been asked in this thread but some time has passed now. So, has anyone tried the BD5 mouthpiece on Alto or Basset Horn?

Thanks

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 Re: Alto Clarinet mouthpiece
Author: Jeroen 
Date:   2020-09-11 12:12

JTJC wrote:

> So, has anyone tried the BD5 mouthpiece on Alto or Basset Horn?
>

I did when trying all the Vandoren mpcs. If you like a full dark sound the BD5 is good. But for me this sound concept is not working on Alto: lacking harmonics and projection. May be it could be a good match with a Basset Horn?

From another thread on this forum I've got a tip to use Bass clarinet reeds. They really work and give more power to the Alto sound.



Post Edited (2020-09-11 12:13)

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 Re: Alto Clarinet mouthpiece
Author: JTJC 
Date:   2020-09-11 15:05

Thanks Jeroen it was for Basset that I’m looking for something. Not having played Alto or being familiar with them I hadn’t though there might be a big difference in application.

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 Re: Alto Clarinet mouthpiece
Author: Hurstfarm 
Date:   2020-09-11 22:34

Coincidentally I’ve got a few alto mouthpieces on trial at the moment, mainly for a Leblanc basset horn: a Hite, a Grabner (Lawrie Bloom), Fobes San Francisco and a Vandoren BD5. Some short conclusions from a couple of hours of testing today, with the caveat that these comments only reflect my own experiences and preferences - yours might be different!

The Hite is the most free-blowing, and for me needed a reed a half strength harder than the others. I found the tone a little harsh, particularly for the basset horn. The Fobes had a sweet, full tone across the range, but for me was the least accommodating of different reeds - the hardest to find a good pairing. It also played a little sharper than the alternatives, which isn’t ideal given that my basset horn is already pitched a little sharp. The Grabner (designed as a basset horn mouthpiece) was more versatile, and responded well to the large interval jumps in the Mendelssohn. It offered a particularly rich lower register. However, my surprise winner was the more budget friendly BD5, for its overall response, consistency across the range and a lovely warm tone. It seems adaptable to the different demands of Mozart and the greater power needed for some of the symphonic repertoire.

Subject to another session with the BD5 and the Grabner tomorrow, I’m expecting to keep the Vandoren.

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 Re: Alto Clarinet mouthpiece
Author: JTJC 
Date:   2020-09-12 16:10

Thanks Andrew that’s helpful. I’m currently using the B44 that came with my Buffet RCP Basset. If you know that mouthpiece, how does it compare to the BD5?

I seem from the VD spec the opening of the BD5 is 0.02mm wider than the B44, which seems almost immaterial at these sort of openings (138/140). However, the BD5 lay is ‘Long’ compared to the B44’s ‘Medium Long’, which is 20mm on my one.

Thanks

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 Re: Alto Clarinet mouthpiece
Author: Hurstfarm 
Date:   2020-09-12 23:53

Unfortunately I don’t have a B44 to make a comparison, but the longer lay on the BD5 should mean it’s a little freer in its response than the B44. That was one of the things I was looking for paired with my basset horn. My sense is that the BD5 has a “rounder” sound than the standard Vandoren alto mouthpieces, but that’s more based on memory, as the only one I currently own from the range is a 5RV, which is a closer, shorter facing - for me better suited to my alto clarinet.

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 Re: Alto Clarinet mouthpiece
Author: beejay 
Date:   2020-09-22 14:00

Although the B40 mouthpiece that came with my Buffet Crampon basset horn gave a good rich sound, particularly in the low register, I found it too resistant for my taste. After some experimentation with the VD 5RV, I settled on a mouthpiece from Edward Pilliger in London. It is not as "dark" as the B40 or the 5RV but the intonation is excellent across all registers and it is extremely easy to blow, using standard VD 3.0 alto clarinet reeds. I've used this setup for several years, and am still very happy with it. The Pilliger mouthpiece is narrower than the others, and it does accept some, not all, ligatures designed for the Bflat clarinet. I'm using a string ligature made by an Argentine manufacturer called Bambu, which is similar to the VD Klassik and equally as good, but for half the price.

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 Re: Alto Clarinet mouthpiece
Author: Hugues Fardao 
Date:   2020-12-06 15:11

Vandoren B44 : very easy, clear sound, but loss of low frequency, too clear and medium-friendly for me.

Pomarico : tested it on a Leblanc and a Bundy, I did'nt like the feeling but it's great : very rich sound, powerful.

Selmer C* : I have two of them, the one given with my Selmer alto in the case, and another one second hand on Reverb.com thinking about keeping a back-up mouthpiece in case of "accident". Well... the second one is different, more low fequencies and more punch, the one given with the clarinet is more "open". So the second C* I had became immediatly my main mpc.

For me the Selmer C* is cool, I like the overhall comfort, it matches with my Légère alto sax Studio cut 2,5. Tested it too on a Bundy, it improved the sound a lot compared to the Bundy stock mouthpiece.

>Jeroen wrote :

>The store told me that Selmer used to make a wide range of alto mpcs (e.g. C*, >C**, D, E, F) that were popular with good alto players. But the store can not >order these anymore. Unfortunately now only 1 alto mpc is available

Yes, I saw an old Selmer catalog with HS*, C, C*, C**, HS**/D and E models for alto... now it seems that there's only C* left, since Selmer decide to keep only their Focus and Concept mouthpieces for B.flat, A and Bass clarinets, but did'nt create a new Alto model, they keep C* standard by default for alto, contralto and contrabass. In fact, even when they created the CP line and the C85 line, they had only B.flat/A, E.flat and Bass models. I wish we had a C85 120 for alto, I like it very much on the B.flat.

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 Re: Alto Clarinet mouthpiece
Author: graham 
Date:   2020-12-06 16:57

I have to pull out quite a bit on my Buffet basset horn as well. Oddly, I find the shorter crook more pulled out better for both tone and tuning than the long one. I use a Pillinger mouthpiece (1.3mm tip opening).

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 Re: Alto Clarinet mouthpiece
Author: mambojazz1 
Date:   2021-03-30 15:25

Hello. From watching your video playing Oblivion I would say the main problem is your alto clarinet. A larger bore instrument would be more open and compatible to more mouthpieces. But also the open rings are a problem. The left hand 3rd finger should never be an open hole because the hole/vent for the G/D should for tuning and acoustical purposes be on the right side of the alto clarinet not on top. The left hand third finger C/G hole should also be lower on the clarinet but it becomes too far for most hands to stretch so instrument makers compromise. The left hand first finger E/B DEFINITELY should be a plateau key with a small hole in the center for half hole since I noticed you use the normal Bb clarinet fingerings for altissimo. Without that half hole playing alto altissimo is a pain. BUT there is an alto clarinet wizard accessory maker and repairman you should contact!! He is a master at fixing alto clarinet problems. Although I hope you have Instagram or facebook. I havent seen his website. Jared Deleon is his name. Here is an instagram link:
https://instagram.com/wind_instrument_repairs?igshid=1r66omgnpyidv

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 Re: Alto Clarinet mouthpiece
Author: davidjsc 
Date:   2021-03-30 23:48

I used the stock Selmer mouthpiece that came with my brand-new Selmer alto clarinet I bought in 1999-2000 range. (this was my very first clarinet)

Then, two months ago I bought a Yamaha 4C because the tip was starting to feel slightly worn or maybe chipped, anyways it was uneven. Since I was subsequently using Yamaha 4C for my bass and soprano clarinets, I thought why not use the same for the alto? I found the alto clarinet Yamaha 4C was identical to the original Selmner mouthpiece.

DSC

~~ Alto Clarinet; Bass Clarinet; B-flat and C Boehm Clarinets; Albert C Clarinet; Oboe ~~


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 Re: Alto Clarinet mouthpiece
Author: JTJC 
Date:   2021-03-31 12:15

There’s also the new Clark Fobes Debut Alto mouthpiece. Has anyone tried it yet and able to compare to the more standard offerings mentioned in preceding posts?

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 Re: Alto Clarinet mouthpiece
Author: HANGARDUDE 
Date:   2021-04-04 15:52

JTJC,

I've ordered 2 of Clark Debut's alto clarinet mpcs, one of his standard 1.50mm opening, another one opened up to a custom opening of 1.65mm(he suggested this over his 1.60 opening on the 10K for a more obvious difference to the 1.50mm one), and they'll arrive later this month. Will let y'all know once I've given both of them a test drive.

Clark told me that he actually likes the new Debut better than the Nova which I was originally considering purchasing, and advised me to go for the former instead.

Josh


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