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Greetings All,

I am new to this site and hope to gain some insight from some experience instrumentalist. I am 30 years old and have never touched an instrument in my life. Suddenly I have an interest in learning to play the saxophone. I was initially interested in the soprano sax as it looks & sounds sexy. During my research I was immediately discouraged after finding out that most places do not offer lessons to beginners on the soprano sax's. At any rate I am now considering the alto sax which I also like and am in search of decent sax that will not scare me away once lessens begin. I am currently looking at the Yamaha YAS 23 (range from 350.00 Used) or the Conductor 300 Model (279.99 New). Both have receive good reviews, but I am not sure which one would be okay for me. Any assistance in deciding would be greatly appreciated.
 

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Re: 30 yr old n00b interested in Sax but have not music experience

YAS 23 is the classic starter horn. I don't know what a "Conductor" is, and I've been playing a long time. Stick to the basics -- go YAS.
 

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Stay away from cheap new saxophones. I dont know that one personally but saxophones are precision instruments. 275 for a new one is like...well I dont know what it is like but its not an investment you want. You are very likely getting something made extremely poor. This means poor tone as well as a horn that constantly goes out of adjustment requiring a tech. Tech work is not cheap. It wont take you long to spend as much as you did on the really cheap horn.

A YAS-23 in the price range you are looking is a proven horn. It stays in adjustment and will serve you a long time. Being an adult I assume you will take care of it. If and when you do upgrade you will get your money out of it.

Please do yourself a favor and buy a decent sax.
 

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Sigmund,

Thanks for the reply; well stated. I will definitely take your advice and invest in a quality instrument. What I am gathering is that YAS seems to be the best for beginners. I will scout around for the best deal. If anyone knows of a reputable site or individual selling this instrument at a reasonable price please let me know. Once again thank you all for your replies. Everyday my interest growing stronger! I am glad I found this site and hopefully I can continue to get great feedback.
 

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Yes, the 23 is a solid student to intermediate horn. It is in tune (another important issue) and it will stay in adjustment well. Its a workhorse.

If you need to go cheaper a Vito can be a good student horn. They can be found on local Craigslist or on Ebay. Typically under 300.
 

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If the choice is between the Yamaha 23 and the "Conductor", then take the advice already offered. No choice, really . . . Yamaha makes good stuff. On unknown-brand horns, one takes a chance unless one can afford to toss $300 or so into a garbage can and walk away.

But my comment is about soprano - don't be discouraged. Part of the key to success with any instrument is having a basic desire for the horn, its look, and its sound. If you REALLY want to play soprano, do it. I did (admittedly MANY years ago at age 16), but no one told me NO, and I did it. Plan to spend a little more for an inexpensive Asian-made soprano with a good reputation, but that should get you started on the right path. Better to learn the horn without having to fight it as is the case with so many no-name brands these days. DAVE
 

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Congratulations on your GREAT decision to start playing sax! In addition to the previously mentioned advice:

1. Once you buy your YAS-23, be sure to have it checked out and set up/adjusted by a good band instrument repair tech (ideally, you could have it checked out before you buy). Plan on spending a little extra to get it set up. It's well worth it.

2. Find a local community band you can join (preferably one that doesn't require an audition). There is no faster way to learn and get better than to combine individual lessons with playing in a group.

When some kids start band, they go from being complete novices to being fairly good players in a matter of 5 years. It's not because they're kids. It's because they take lessons and play with a group nearly every day.

GOOD LUCK!!!
 

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Hey Chronic, don't let anyone tell you no, nice thing about guys like us that start this insanity.. I mean adventure, at an older age is you can bypass all the "stuff" the youngsters went through and learn what you want to learn. I picked up an alto (good horn to start on) in 1980, played for a year (took lessons which I highly recommend), moved to tenor and then had to stop playing due to family obligations. On a whim I bought another sax in 2007 and it's been a ton of fun ever since. In the last four years I've gone for truly sucking to just being mediocre but I'm playing the music I like, learning things that I like to listen to and I have absolutely no delusions about being anything other than a "hobby player"... playing only for the enjoyment of playing. So, if soprano is the horn you ultimately want to play then go that direction now, look for a solid private teacher who will get you going on the basics and have fun. Best of luck!!!
 
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