Sax on the Web Forum Archive / Alto Saxophone / Yanagisawa saxophones

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User ID: 2031664
Sep 4th 1:59 PM
How good are yanagisawa saxophones and who plays them?
Bari. Student
User ID: 2693314
Sep 4th 5:36 PM
Very Good horns i think there the best personally. Quiet few plays yana. e.g Mel Martin etc...
Paul C.
User ID: 0317884
Sep 4th 5:39 PM
Lightest, fastest action of any new sax. And very good keywork features... double arms on low keys, F# helper.
User ID: 9279843
Sep 4th 8:49 PM
Paul C., I'm considering the purchase of the Yanigasawa SC soprano. I'd appreciate an opinion/reveiw if you've experience with them. Thanks
Paul C.
User ID: 8075153
Sep 5th 11:02 AM
The little curved model? Excellent... on of the best on the market.

Let me tell you about my experience with Yanagisawa. I had seen them around, not as many as Yamahas or Selmers, but a few. Did not really know much about them. When I did start seeing them more often, my observation was they were very well made, and good playing saxes.

One of the players in my sax ensemble has been playing one for many years, she has a Masters in Music Ed. A really fine, artist grade sax.

Yanagisawa makes nothing else, just saxes, and not even student and intermediate... just the best they can make. No clarinets, no flutes, no mellophones, no drums, just SAXOPHONES.

So, my old friend and mentor, Santy Runyon has a black 990 alto. He LOVES it. One day he handed me, one after the other, a new Selmer, a new Yamaha, Keilwerth, other brands. "Feel this... feel this... now this one..." Then he handed me the Yanagisawa.

"THAT is how a sax should feel. The springs on all these others are way too stiff. How is a player supposed to play fast with an action like that? (He played excerpts from Joachim Anderson's flute etudes, at speed, some clumsiness.) But this Yanagisawa, it is light and fast, the keywork just right." (Then he played the same flute etudes smoothly)

About that time, the local high school got a new tenor, the 900 model. I played it... also very nice, and with a good, centered tone. Even though this was not the 990 with double arms, it was still a great playing tenor.

And so far, EVERY Yanagisawa I have seen and played has been an impressive sax.

I have played the Yanagisawa curved, both the newer and older models. I did not like the older model's lack of front F key and poor palm key layout, for the same reasons I did not like the similar Mk VI layout on these keys.

BUT, the newer models are great. Intonation is excellent, as on all Yanagisawas. Tone is rich, easy response. I am playing now a curved soprano that is an almost exact copy of the Yanagisawa. It plays nearly identically, as much as two different saxes can be alike.

And the other current Yanagisawa straight sopranos... I have played them, and they sound and feel different, but are still top quality sopranos. I don't think you would be dissatisfied with any Yanagisawa product.
User ID: 0651814
Sep 5th 11:06 AM
Yanis are all well made, you can observe excellent craftsmanship when you pick them up.And they have very good quality control,every horn of the same model almost sounds the same.
User ID: 2031664
Sep 6th 1:50 PM
Thanks Paul C for the info I found it very informative.
Bari. Student
User ID: 2693314
Sep 6th 4:16 PM
I tried quiet a few top of the lines saxes at the store yana felt great light key work and confortable (not as confortable as keilwerth but sitll good enoug, very good sound full solid. thats why i like yana. so much but everyone has there preference.
User ID: 0916684
Oct 17th 5:42 AM
better yanagisawa a991 or 990?

ciao by roma

User ID: 1662364
Oct 17th 6:47 AM
991 is the newer model with a few enhancements. As far as I know, there was nothing wrong with the 990.
User ID: 1564944
Oct 17th 10:59 AM
Dumped my MKVI bari for a 991 bari, best I have ever used! my soprano is an old Yani that is still the best I have ever tried including all of the new yamaha selmer and keilwerth models. I tried the new 992B alto and it is amazing.. I heard that Antonio Hart, a long time King super 20 player is using one also and he is one of the finest fiercest players of all out there..
User ID: 9084913
Oct 17th 6:14 PM
I am now trying out a 992 from WW&BW. It's the bronze model, same keywork as the 991 I believe. The horn is just awesome! It has a great ring and has a very expressive sound. My current axe is a gold plated SML and if I could sell it for the $3300, I'd trade it in a heartbeat...

Well, the SML is actually on it's way to getting an overhaul from Palo Tung in New Orleans. So perhaps I should reserve my judgement after I get a chance to play my horn after it's been properly set up. But no doubt, the 992 is a hell of a horn.

User ID: 0227464
Oct 17th 9:14 PM
See Marketplace/FS: My Stuff
User ID: 2295734
Oct 21st 10:57 AM
Somebody asked who played Yana. Listen to Greg Osby on his alto...what a beautiful rich sound.

The great thing about Yana is that they have segmented the professional sax category into several tiers. So you need to be specific when you compare pro s. For example, Yana's 901 s (lacquer, bronze, silver plate) are excellent pro horns...similar to Yamaha's YAS 62 line.

Then, up a level is the 991 (lacquer) which I play and am continually amazed with. I sold my Selmer Super 80 II for this. Excellent sound, and the best keywork I've felt. It could be compared well to the Yamaha custom lacuqer.

However, Yana doesnt stop there, they then move from "pro" s to "artist" s which are damn expenseive but unbelievable. First, the bronze 991 which is called the 992. It is a good jump up in price from the 991 but if you want an extra depth of sound, this is a good horn. You'd be hard pressed to find any Mark VI that is better than this. Many VI players are impressed by this one.

Then, the flag ship of the Yana line. The 9930. This has a sterling silver neck and body with a brass lacquered bell and key work. It looks alot like a King Super 20 silversonic...the one Cannonball Adderly plays. In my layperson opinon, this is the finest production saxophone made in the world today. There isnt a selmer/yamaha product that can touch this thing. Not only is it the best craftsmanship, materials, keywork, but its quality control is stellar. I wish I had the money to compete. To be really inflamatory, I dont think the Selmer Reference s are in this league. IMHO
User ID: 2295734
Oct 21st 11:00 AM
By the way, on my comments above; its possible that some of the taiwanese horns are capable of assembling an excellent horn that could compete with the 901 above, maybe better, maybe even the 991. But given what is well known about their artist saxes (992 and 9930), not likely.
User ID: 9517143
Oct 21st 6:30 PM
And what about the 9937? Forget all the doodling on it, this is a notably heavy, solid sterling silver sax from head to toe. How does it compare with the 9930?
User ID: 2295734
Oct 21st 9:35 PM
Forgot about the 9937. I dont have that in my Yana catalogue. I have no idea if it is a better horn because it is all solid sterling, compared to the 9930. But no doubt, in the exact same league as the 9930.

And the doodling looks great.

User ID: 8645673
Oct 21st 10:02 PM
I have a SC9930. Thats a horn I will never sale. best soprano I have ever played. Not to forget I can play in TUNE for once........very strange indeed
User ID: 0645514
Oct 22nd 1:51 AM
Leo. Which resonator do you have for your 991? I have the 990 but I'm just using the plastic dome resonators that came in stock and now I'm thinking of exchaging them metal resos like Noyek.

BTW, the 9937 is a piece of art. It has engravings all over the body and even on the keys and neck! I checked out the store in Japan and they costs over 5000 dollars. Check out USA Horn and they have some photo of the 9937. And to my experience the sterling silver by Yani are the best, but the cost is nearly as same as a Bundy (or even more).
User ID: 0317884
Oct 22nd 2:42 AM
New Yanagisawa Bronze Alto Sax A992 $2300 + shipping.

Only a few hours of playt time. New mint condition. I MUST sell!

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