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Discussion Starter #1
i wanna buy a vintage alto sax in a lower price?

there are some choices:
buescher "BIG B"
martin "THE MARTIN" or" the committee II"
conn 6M

need your advice so !!!!!

thx a lot~
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2016
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Hmmmm...you think the 6M has a small sound ? It is famous for it's wide, dark tone.....

But everybody has their own tastes.

Of the three...the Martin will have the most 'bite' to its tone...the sharpest edge, the most projecting high end.

The Conn would usually be the darkest....most low and midrange overtones of the three...

The Buescher would be in-between as far as tonal qualities. More lows than a Martin, not quite as dark as a Conn. More edginess and 'pop' than a Conn, but not so much as a Martin.

All three are great horns. You have all three available to you ? Or did you just pick these from research ?

Some others which may be of interest, if you want to expand your possibilities: Old Keilwerths or Kohlerts.... King Zephyrs.... Holton Ideal, 265's or Revelations... or Beaugnier-made horns (Noblet or Vito, France).

If not, then as I said, any of those 3 are superb. And they all have their signature sounds (that's what's so NICE about vintage makers...they all have their sounds and they don't sound like each other).

But if you purely want to go 'darker' than the 6M....you may have to go to a different maker.
 

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Indistinguishable Resident Buescher Bigot and Foru
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thx a lot!~~~

the "small" i mean that the horn and key;play in hands and felt like a toy...
All altos will feel like that to you -- new, old, or otherwise. It's a small horn.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Hmmmm...you think the 6M has a small sound ? It is famous for it's wide, dark tone.....

But everybody has their own tastes.

Of the three...the Martin will have the most 'bite' to its tone...the sharpest edge, the most projecting high end.

The Conn would usually be the darkest....most low and midrange overtones of the three...

The Buescher would be in-between as far as tonal qualities. More lows than a Martin, not quite as dark as a Conn. More edginess and 'pop' than a Conn, but not so much as a Martin.

All three are great horns. You have all three available to you ? Or did you just pick these from research ?

Some others which may be of interest, if you want to expand your possibilities: Old Keilwerths or Kohlerts.... King Zephyrs.... Holton Ideal, 265's or Revelations... or Beaugnier-made horns (Noblet or Vito, France).

If not, then as I said, any of those 3 are superb. And they all have their signature sounds (that's what's so NICE about vintage makers...they all have their sounds and they don't sound like each other).

But if you purely want to go 'darker' than the 6M....you may have to go to a different maker.
very interested in King Zephyrs.what are they sound like??
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member/Logician
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very interested in King Zephyrs.what are they sound like??
Altos? Piercing is the one word I'd use. For vintage altos, I favor Bueschers myself. First and foremost, an alto needs to be sweet; even if it's going to be roughed up a bit.
 

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In comparison to 95% of contemporary horns...I wouldn't call any vintage Alto 'piercing', IMHO. Perhaps relative to each other...but all of the classics belong to a similar few paradigms of sound, those which were pretty much replaced with the good ol' post-1980 nails-on-the-blackboard Alto tone.

(Whooppeee.....)

Zola...go to my website and listen to the soundfiles (I am not doing this to make a sale, just to give you an idea of how the Alto can sound differently depending on the maker).

Folks can be making suggestions here all day...and you will have a laundry-list of good vintage makers (most of which will sound as good as/better than a mark IV, btw)...but that will not much help you choose a horn.

So....we know that you want a big, fat, dark tone. So, you are correct...you want a vintage horn.

But...what is your budget ? Where are you located ? Do you have any places near you where you can try older Altos ? What kind of music do you play ? How long have you been playing ?

Information like this helps people make more specific suggestions.

Also, really think about which sound moves you more...is it Alto ? or Tenor ? Or Baritone ? Or Soprano ?

Alto is traditionally (and mistakenly) considered to be the 'starter' horn....but probably this is due its size and its price....and the seeming fact that more Altos are produced than any of the others. But, there have been enough threads here about how that is an erroneous assumption to make, and how one doesn't need to start with Alto if they want to pick up the sax...

 

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Indistinguishable Resident Buescher Bigot and Foru
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i do think about that maybe i should play tenor or baritone...
I have large hands as well, so I understand. Wait till you get to the Soprano....
 

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OK. Here are my two cents:

Consider an older horn than the ones you mentioned. The warmest horns are often of the oldest vintage. Good sound is in the ear of the beholder. People who don't like these really old horns would say that they are tubby and lack power or projection.

Among these I would suggest an old Buescher Tru Tone split bell (low B and low Bb on opposite sides of the bell). Also the old split bell Conn horns are very nice. The New Wonder II (aka Chu Berry) is warmer than the earlier New Wonder. The 6M is a powerful horn and a bit brighter. The oldest Martin Handcraft is great too.

BTW, all of these are cheaper than the horns you mentioned.

Go for the split bell design if you want cheap and warm. Stencils are OK too, but be aware that many of them do not have a fork F. That may be an issue for you or not. Also be warned that all of these old horns will lack the improved ergonomics of later horns. But funky old altos are way easier to play than funky old tenors. I know this all too well!

If you have big hands and want a big horn for comfort, you won't find it in an old horn. The later horns are much better for big hands. The Selmer Mk VII (not Mk VI) is made for HUGE hands. Hey, the Mk VII is considered a vintage horn now!
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2015
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well well well...... I have a newly refurbished Chue Berry Alto that rocks.... And right behind it i have a 6M being refurbished. I am drooling at thought of play testing the two of them.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
quite helpful.
a friend also suggest true tone,but true tone in good shape is so hard to find...
i've tried 6M twice and felt a little bright,too.(in fact, THAT 6M is NOT even as thick as my p.mauriat sys-76,which surprised me a lot and made me unsatisified about that horn;that is why my teacher and some friends suggest me try a MARTIN or BUESCHER...)

but MARTINs and BUESCHERs are also hard to find in CHINA (people like the M6 and CONN...).
Now my teacher's friend's 6M(mentioned before) is my best choice so far...
 

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Forum Contributor 2011, SOTW's pedantic pet rodent
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Seriously, I think you probably have a tenor sound in your head when you say "fat, dark". I think any decent tenor will most likely get you closer to what you want than chasing around after various vintage altos.

Which alto player has the kind of sound you are aiming at? :)
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Seriously, I think you probably have a tenor sound in your head when you say "fat, dark". I think any decent tenor will most likely get you closer to what you want than chasing around after various vintage altos.

Which alto player has the kind of sound you are aiming at? :)
maybe you are right...

my favourite players are lester young,stan getz,while my favourite alto players are...canonball adderley...
 
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