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 Rico Inverted Ligature
Author: Max S-D 
Date:   2021-08-20 03:35

I discovered the inverted Rico-branded ligatures (not the H-Ligature) recently and picked them up for bass clarinet, clarinet and tenor sax (actually the soprano sax model that fits my metal tenor mouthpiece). Each of them costs around $17-$20 without a cap, a few bucks more with the same plastic one that comes with the H-ligatures.

I'm quite impressed by them! They are reminiscent the old Vandoren Master's ligatures. Suspiciously so, really. The metal is quite a bit thicker than those old Vandorens, so they don't quite form up to the mouthpiece and reed quite as easily, but hopefully that means they will be durable. I was able to shape mine a bit with a combination of tightening and pressing in places, much like you would with a Bonade.

I mostly use a Vandoren Optimum or my old Master's ligature, but as a holdover from my teaching days, I am always on the lookout for solid, affordable equipment and I think this fits the bill.

A ligature's impact on tone is one that has been hotly debated here for years, but I think it has a small impact and this ligature, to me, is in between the "free" feeling of an inverted Bonade and the relatively more "controlled" feeling of my Optimum. I think it sort of splits the difference between my Optimum and my Master's ligature, if that is a comparison that helps anyone. I find it to be on the stable side of the "minimalist" ligature crop, but definitely lighter in response and tone than the denser-sounding/feeling Optimum.

I also think that this inexpensive Rico-branded product is worlds better than the more expensive H Ligature. I never felt like the H patterned metal on the front sat properly on my reeds.

For me, this ligature also feels like it has a more secure hold on the reed than the H lig or the inverted Bonade, both of which have a tendency to want to slip for me.

For the price, I think this is hard to beat. I haven't had students for a number of years, but this ligature seems like a pretty solid option for a very reasonable price that I'd be happy to recommend to them. I've certainly played ligatures that cost a lot more that I liked a lot less!

Has anyone else tried these? What did you think?

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 Re: Rico Inverted Ligature
Author: super20dan 
Date:   2021-08-20 16:14

also impressed with these, got one for eb and its execellent. best buy in ligs currently.

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 Re: Rico Inverted Ligature
Author: joe englert 
Date:   2021-08-20 18:57

I remember Harold Wright told me that at one time he used a Mitchell Lurie ligature but when he changed mouthpieces he said it made the reed feel to free so he switched to a standard Bonade and never changed to another one as we all know


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 Re: Rico Inverted Ligature
Author: Ed 
Date:   2021-08-21 05:34

Some ligatures seem to affect response, some change the sound or add their own color, perhaps by affecting certain harmonics, some seem to be more neutral, allowing the reed to be more vibrancy. Any comments on those factors with this ligature?

With the cost of much of the equipment out there, they certain seem like a great deal.

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 Re: Rico Inverted Ligature
Author: johnwesley 
Date:   2021-08-21 09:11

Thanks Max S-D for the input. I looked up the lig and found a dealer on Reverb selling it for 12 bucks shipped!!

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 Re: Rico Inverted Ligature
Author: Max S-D 
Date:   2021-08-27 23:30

Ed, this one feels relatively neutral to me compared with ligatures on the darker/more muted side like the rovners or ligatures on the brighter/freer side like a Francois Louis. I find it easy to forget about while I am playing, which is the most important trait I look for in a ligature, in my opinion.

I still like my Optimum more, but that's mostly because the single screw is easier to deal with when testing reeds and easier for me to get lined up right without thinking about it. Convenience/repeatability is important to me.

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 Re: Rico Inverted Ligature
Author: super20dan 
Date:   2021-08-28 03:08

also no real accolades from me other than a well made lig for a low price.

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