Forum Contributor 2017
“I play sax but mostly it plays me”
No, I don't think you understand. It's not the pad, it's the alignment of the pad holder to the tone hole, and a new pad won't make any difference. But, I'm not going to go and start messing with holders, springs, or pads, or take it in to a shop to mess with them, whether that means replacing them, or bending them, or whatever.
You want to fix and adjust new horns, be my guest. I expect it to play out of the box and I don't care what brand it is. If it doesn't, it's gone. If a company doesn't have the Quality Control to insure that every instrument is flawless, at that price, I'm not interested.
If we're going to be using car analogies. Yeah, if I take a car for a test drive and find out there were some things broken on it, and some things I didn't like about it, I'm not buying that car, because I'm not buying a new car so it can sit in the shop. Is it just that car, was it assembled on a Monday.. I don't care. I'm not going to trade mine in when it doesn't have problems and performs just as well, and I have 0 payments remaining.
The Eastern Music (Yes Eastern, not Eastar); full rail construction, metal resonators, Italian leather, rose brass (higher copper content), blue springs, unlacquered, intended as a Selmer 54 copy, with a Eastern Music power neck. $800 new didn't have any issues, 8 months later still doesn't. And yes it actually has good intonation, and sound (but that's a personal preference). The point here is that the sound is similar enough to the ProOne... with my MP and reed and me playing it. And I don't know anything about Eastern Music, what factory they use, their reputation in the industry, etc.. I didn't originally buy it because of the name. I bought it based on listed features for the price. Value. You may make a different value judgement.
Brian, you want to believe it or not, that's up to you. But to say that the comparison is invalid... Why don't you go do a Youtube search for Eastern Music and have a listen to the videos that are up there about it. Regarding the B&S, I actually bought a B&S 2001 because you were one of the people who recommended it. It definitely had worse intonation than the Eastern. If one end was in, the other was out, and some of the middle notes were way off from one to the next. Had to do so much jumping around with voicing, it was ridiculous. And it was completely gone over before I bought it. Did I just get unlucky? Maybe, but it's gone, because it didn't live up to expectations and it didn't perform better than the Eastern.
And like I said. After six saxophones, I'm done searching, because if a $2000 ($2500/$3000/$5000 or whatever the non sale price is) instrument isn't leaps and bounds above an $800 dollar one, I'm not interested. And it's definitely not leaps and bounds, it's barely a match, with issues to boot. All the whizbang stuff doesn't matter much when basic stuff isn't right.
I would have been willing to bet the ProOne would have done circles around the Eastern, and it was going to be the new keeper. Ah well, it's not. And honestly, should it really be such a surprise? China and Taiwan make everything now, and everyone is swapping parts with everyone, and one Taiwan horn is just as likely to have the same parts on it as a different one, and the same factory makes them for multiple vendors. Technology is improving. Inexpensive doesn't necessarily mean cheap any more, necessarily.