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What sort of an alto sax, is it likely, that one would need for university? Probably a Mark VI or Super Balanced Action, right? Not something like a Conn, King, Martin, or Buescher? Or does it depend on where you go and your particular program?

Thanks.
 

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hopefully the university does not require a particular brand. They should have accepted you on the merit of your playing on your current horn.

you may get a private teach tell you it's time to upgrade to something like a mk VI or something like that. I never had a problem and ppl had mk VIs, VIIs, SA80s, Buffets, Coufs, Super 20s, 61/62s, et all
 

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It really depends on the school. There are some schools where an old Buescher is literally required (these profs tend to be pretty devout Rascher followers). However, at most schools they are much more lenient and you can pretty much come in with whatever you want. My personal opinion is that things will be easier for you if you have a more modern horn, but I certainly can see both sides of things (I'm a huge fan of vintage horns, actually).

I see a lot of people playing Selmer Series II's and III's. Where I go, Yamaha outnumbers Selmer by a noticeable amount, so pretty much anything in their pro line. There's usually a few Yanagisawa's around, and I personally like those better than Yamaha (although I like Selmer best!). I'm also starting to see Jupiter Artist series horns pop up, which had surprised me. But, I must say that the Jupiter alto I tried was far more in tune than any other sax I've ever played. (the C# on it almost wanted to push sharp, if anything!).

Of course, a Mark VI or SBA would be a fine horn, but there are certainly alternatives that will work just as well!
 

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I think it's really great that there is more variety than there was when I was in university.

Pretty much any serious player had a MkVI (until the VII came out), and we tolerated the three people with Buffets;)

Nobody played Buescher, and Rascher was 'oh, yeah, that guy that Ibert wrote the C da C for.'

The only guy with a Conn was a clarinet player.

A couple of years later, Yamahas started showing up.
 

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The Mark VI's are too precious now. There isn't a single person in my studio with one. There are a couple kids who know enough to recognize one, though. I know for band, one girl, a freshman, decided to play tenor. The other players went for the shiny Yamahas, she went for the ugly Mark VI! (smart girl).

With Selmer, I would say the Series II pretty much rules the roost. Most players aren't entirely sold on the Series III, which I find interesting. I've yet to see a Reference model in our studio either.

With Yamahas, the Custom line is very very popular.
 

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As long as the horn works and allows you to play correctly, there shouldn't be much of a problem. I made it through with a nice Yanagisawa 880 I picked up relatively cheaply. Unless you're playing on a beat up Bundy II, you should be OK.
 

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Here is what I see at UOP (University of the Pacific):
in the order that I remembered them, although there is a prevalence of 82Z altos.

YAS-82Z (and YTS-82Z)
YAS-875 (not EX)
YAS-52
Noblet Bass Sax
Yanagisawa 991 Alto
YAS-23
Mark VI Soprano, Alto, Tenor
Weltklang Baritone
Holton Collegiate (I think, it has the C-D trill, G# trill, Eb trill keys) Baritone
Selmer Series II Alto
Selmer Ref 54 Hummingbird Alto
YAS-475
King Zephyr Baritone
P. Mauriat Alto (the vintage finish one, not sure which one it is)
Yanagisawa 901

And there are most likely others that I haven't seen yet.

Conclusion? It helps to have a horn that you can rely on, but some of the "cheaper" horns are owned by performance majors, and they have lasted them for years.
 

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In my expirience, you should be fine on any horn in music school.

While the majority of players had some variety of high end Selmer or Yamaha, I did great on my Zephyr alto in both classical and jazz, and a friend of mine short on funds went all the way to his senior year on a Vito alto, and was one of th best in the studio
 

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Has nearly nothing to do with the make of the horn. Your playing will determine your chair. Any good instructor will be able to place you in terms of timing and tone control. But heck, if you have several thousand dollars to burn, go for a Mark VI! Though I honestly think you'd do fine on a Bundy.
 

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hakukani said:
I think it's really great that there is more variety than there was when I was in university........ A couple of years later, Yamahas started showing up.
was it that long ago? geez .. you're making me feel old Hakukani. I was in that class that had the VIIs and Yamahas - actually the SA80s were out too with their fancy engravings.

I would think the universities are more lenient on students (depending upon the school). Though i have heard in the U around here that some teachers point the kids to a "certain" tone .. a 60ish err .. VI style tone.
 

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hakukani said:
I think it's really great that there is more variety than there was when I was in university.

Pretty much any serious player had a MkVI (until the VII came out), and we tolerated the three people with Buffets;)

Nobody played Buescher, and Rascher was 'oh, yeah, that guy that Ibert wrote the C da C for.'

The only guy with a Conn was a clarinet player.

A couple of years later, Yamahas started showing up.

I saw David Baker's band today, and all 5 saxes were playing Selmers; two 6 altos and a tenor, a ref 54 tenor, and a Serie II bari. However the sopranos were both Yanagasawas.

I think most of the classical guys have Yamahas though, and I have seen a kielwerth tenor.
 

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Saxplayer67 said:
The sax doesn't matter. The person playing is the most important thing, followed by the reed and mouthpiece combination and THEN the sax. If it works for you, then that's all that matters.
Well yes AND no. It seems to me that the determining factor would be what sort of message the students get from their teachers at the particular university. Martinman (above) refers to David Baker's band (which I believe may be a band attached to his college??), and says they all play Selmer/Yanagisawa. He then says the "classical guys" play Yamaha which I presume refers to teachers and students playing high-end Yamahas (??). That information is itself a pretty strong signal to the student that he should have a high-end horn unless the academics make it very clear to students that cheaper horns are fine as long as the student sounds good.

I suppose the logic of the "buy a Mark VI" or "buy a gold-plate Yagamahoopla" POV would be that if you are thinking that music will be your profession then sooner or later you'll have to bite the bullet and buy the best equipment available even if it means going into more debt.
 

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Martinman said:
I saw David Baker's band today, and all 5 saxes were playing Selmers; two 6 altos and a tenor, a ref 54 tenor, and a Serie II bari. However the sopranos were both Yanagasawas.

I think most of the classical guys have Yamahas though, and I have seen a kielwerth tenor.
I believe HeavyWeather was playing lead alto in the North Texas One O'Clock on a Yamaha 52. So much on needing a top of the line pro horn in order to be successful in college.
 

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Agent27 said:
I believe HeavyWeather was playing lead alto in the North Texas One O'Clock on a Yamaha 52. So much on needing a top of the line pro horn in order to be successful in college.

I never said they had to have those horns, I was just stating that they did.

And yes, David Baker's band is attached to the school, it is the top IU jazz band.

By "classical guys" I mean Otis Murphy, Dr. Walsh (jazz, but plays Yamahas too), at least two of the classical AI's, and some students I have seen walking around.
 
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