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Distinguished SOTW Member
Alto: Couesnon and Bettersax (by Bundy); Tenor: YTS-61; Sop: Antigua Winds 4280; C-mel: Conn
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3,161 Posts
Coufman, I have a 582 and it sounds rich and powerful when needed, and soft and expressive when that's needed. I've used a metal Beechler, but my favorite so far is a Yanagisawa HR mpc with a FL lig and V16 2-1/2 reed. I owned a vintage Conn (side palm keys and thumb ring bothered me), a Unison S100GG sop with 2 necks (excellent quality and good player, but pricier than the Antigua a bit) and the Antigua 582LQ. Of these, I prefer the Antigua and consider it a keeper after a long search for one that meets my needs.
8)
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member
Alto: Couesnon and Bettersax (by Bundy); Tenor: YTS-61; Sop: Antigua Winds 4280; C-mel: Conn
Joined
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3,161 Posts
Coufman - if that means you might be interested in getting a good deal on a new 582LQ, I got mine at http://www.bandinstrumentservice.com/Woodwinds.htm#saxophones
for $595 plus a nominal shipping fee. I have no connection with this company other than being a satisfied customer. For some unknonwn reason, it seems they don't offer the 586 or 590, if you were interested in either of those 2-neck models.

Best of luck in getting what satisfies your needs.

8)
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member
Alto: Couesnon and Bettersax (by Bundy); Tenor: YTS-61; Sop: Antigua Winds 4280; C-mel: Conn
Joined
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3,161 Posts
It's been my experience that Dave don't do trades. :cry:
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member
Alto: Couesnon and Bettersax (by Bundy); Tenor: YTS-61; Sop: Antigua Winds 4280; C-mel: Conn
Joined
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3,161 Posts
rcwjd -
You won't be disappointed, I'm sure.
8)
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member
Alto: Couesnon and Bettersax (by Bundy); Tenor: YTS-61; Sop: Antigua Winds 4280; C-mel: Conn
Joined
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3,161 Posts
I didn't think you were kidding about the Antigua sop because I had one. But, I was a little concerned whether the Antigua 520LQ alto would measure up to the glowing description of your 530SP (same as a 520LQ but silver-plated with gold keys) and praise for its intonation. Well, I'm no longer concerned. My 520LQ is everything you said it would be. I like it so much I've asked Jason Dumars to engrave the bell and bow on it in his special way. If everything goes well, it should be done and back to me by the end of the month.
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member
Alto: Couesnon and Bettersax (by Bundy); Tenor: YTS-61; Sop: Antigua Winds 4280; C-mel: Conn
Joined
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3,161 Posts
Lenny - http://www.kesslermusic.com and http://www.antiguawinds.com provide specifications for Antigua saxes. I believe black chrome is a more attractive finish than black enamel or other types of black coatings, and should be more durable, less impervious to chipping. As for whether the coating affects the sound, I'll leave that to the two Daves and maybe Paul.
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member
Alto: Couesnon and Bettersax (by Bundy); Tenor: YTS-61; Sop: Antigua Winds 4280; C-mel: Conn
Joined
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3,161 Posts
If you're that concerned about durability, I recommend you get the YSS-475 and forget the stigmatized Taiwanese horn. Don't listen to those who claim the Antigua 582/586/590 sop's are the best value in a new soprano today when they don't have 5-10 years of use with which to provide facts about durability/realibility/maintainability. Go with your instinct and sleep better at night for it. In 2-3 years, the rest of us will let you know how we did with our high risk purchases if you're still interested. You may be right, who knows?

I just got back from listening to Dave Dolson play his Antigua 590LQ at a Sunday afternoon Dixeland jazz gig (and his brand new Unison S300 satin gold alto) and he put out a very satisfying sound. Actually, I liked it better than the last time I heard him play his vintage silver Buescher straight sop at the same club. So far, the Antigua is still holding up after heavy gigging and traveling with it for Dave, who used it at a Fresno jazz festival earlier this month.

But, it's probably safer to go with the YSS-475. You hear so many good things about them. Don't you?
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member
Alto: Couesnon and Bettersax (by Bundy); Tenor: YTS-61; Sop: Antigua Winds 4280; C-mel: Conn
Joined
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3,161 Posts
Katysax - that's the best direct-experience review I've read comparing the YSS-475, YSS-62 and Yani 901 to late model Antigua sop's. Even Dave Dolson's comments didn't include the YSS models. If Antiguas prove as durable and reliable as they are in overall performance quality, they will be even tougher to beat in the sax marketplace at more than their relatively low price range. In fact, now might be the best time to snap one up before Antigua Winds gets wise and decides to increase prices.
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member
Alto: Couesnon and Bettersax (by Bundy); Tenor: YTS-61; Sop: Antigua Winds 4280; C-mel: Conn
Joined
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3,161 Posts
Steve - this very question was just addressed on the second page of this thread. If you go back just one page you'll find Dave's answer about durability, and mine, of the Antigua sop's.
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member
Alto: Couesnon and Bettersax (by Bundy); Tenor: YTS-61; Sop: Antigua Winds 4280; C-mel: Conn
Joined
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3,161 Posts
Mouthpiece selection should be tailored to the individual's emboucher, playing style and experience, to name three. Having shared that, I've found a Yanagisawa HR 6 mpc works best for my community band playing where blending with the group is the key to acceptability.
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member
Alto: Couesnon and Bettersax (by Bundy); Tenor: YTS-61; Sop: Antigua Winds 4280; C-mel: Conn
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3,161 Posts
Just remember Dave, God only made a few perfect heads; the others he covered with hair. :wink:
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member
Alto: Couesnon and Bettersax (by Bundy); Tenor: YTS-61; Sop: Antigua Winds 4280; C-mel: Conn
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3,161 Posts
In that case, Brad, you might want to check out the Antigua Winds Supreme A520LQ alto. It too is a very attractive, solidly constructed sax with exceptional intonation and pleasing sound. Don't take my word for it, ask Dave about these saxes, they're another fine example of the better quality horns, like the Jupiter Artist, coming out of Taiwan lately.
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member
Alto: Couesnon and Bettersax (by Bundy); Tenor: YTS-61; Sop: Antigua Winds 4280; C-mel: Conn
Joined
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3,161 Posts
Brad - I had no problem with playing low notes on my 520LQ, but I never really had much luck, in general, with altissimo. I hit high F# okay, but it had an F# key, so no big deal. The most impressive feature for me was the intonation which was right on for most of both registers. Unisons are good saxes too, but they cost a lot more and aren't that much better than the Antigua Supreme, in my opinion.

You're right about the music store you had the bad experience at. That's why I think Kessler's is a better bet because everyone who's shared their experience about buying from Dave's shop has had nothing but good to say about their service and customer-oriented policies. If you get something from them that isn't right, you can be sure they'll make it right.

Paul Coats is the Antigua alto player to answer the altissimo question if he sees this thread. He's the player and educator who has the following message in his signature line, "You are all welcome to contact me at [email protected], which is my public email address set up especially for my friends here on Sax On The Web."
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member
Alto: Couesnon and Bettersax (by Bundy); Tenor: YTS-61; Sop: Antigua Winds 4280; C-mel: Conn
Joined
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3,161 Posts
Tried to email which man? Paul Coats? If so, that doesn't sound right. He's a very active and responsive sax educator. [email protected] should be a good email address for him. I've used it several times in the recent past without problem.
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member
Alto: Couesnon and Bettersax (by Bundy); Tenor: YTS-61; Sop: Antigua Winds 4280; C-mel: Conn
Joined
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3,161 Posts
Brad, I got through to Paul and he said if I could get your email address he would get back to you. He's been away for awhile. It's curious, but I used the same address I gave you to reach him. Maybe his inbox was full when you tried because he has been out of state at a meeting of some sort. You can contact me at my email address by clicking the email button below.

Rob

bradshawm said:
I meant Paul. I tried it again. Got the same response.
<snip>
That's alright. He'll find this post eventually. In the meantime, he might be interested in the fact that some of us can't get through to him. Probably enjoying the vacation from being inundated with questions from ignorant souls like mine.
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member
Alto: Couesnon and Bettersax (by Bundy); Tenor: YTS-61; Sop: Antigua Winds 4280; C-mel: Conn
Joined
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3,161 Posts
Get the 582 from Dave Kessler and get a teacher. You and your parents won't be sorry unless you decide the sop isn't for you either. I'm probably older than your parents, my 582 exceeded my expectations when I got it and I still take lessons from a teacher after playing sax off and on for 55 years. Also, I haven't read one negative comment about Kessler's Music company, not one.

Btw, I just started clarinet about six months ago and take private clarinet lessons from the same teacher who's helping me improve my sax skills. You might reconsider dropping the clarinet altogether if you plan to stick around the woodwind player's world as a pro.
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member
Alto: Couesnon and Bettersax (by Bundy); Tenor: YTS-61; Sop: Antigua Winds 4280; C-mel: Conn
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3,161 Posts
DanA - I don't agree about the comparison between sop and clarinet enbouchers. There's a significant difference between them, IMO. I play sop and, as I mentioned, just started clarinet looking forward to doubling. I find a big difference between the two embouchers. The clarinet is more resistant and tighter than my soprano. My teacher told me the greater appeal of the sax is the relative ease with which you can produce good sounds compared to the clarinet. I believe the clarinet is much more difficult than the sax. It has a range of four-plus octaves, while the sax has only two, and the fingering is different between low and high registers for the same notes whereas the sax uses the same fingering for both registers.

But I digress from the topic of what brand of inexpensive soprano you should consider, and I can't recommend strongly enough the Antigua Winds 582 (straight, one-piece) F#, or 586 (straight, 2-neck F#), or 590 (straight, 2-neck, G) sopranos, echoing what Dave advised about making sure you get the later serial numbered models.

If your parents are hesitant to buy from online sources, and you're not convinced either local dealer is offering a good deal, have them fly out to Las Vegas for a holiday and stop by Dave's while they're there. :wink:
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member
Alto: Couesnon and Bettersax (by Bundy); Tenor: YTS-61; Sop: Antigua Winds 4280; C-mel: Conn
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3,161 Posts
DanA, try all the sop's they have at your dealer of choice. Play the scale on each one from low Bb to high F or F#. Even if you're not an experienced soprano player and may not be able to hit all the notes at first, the ease with which you are able to get as much of the scale done as possible should be relative between the horns you try.

Check for how comfortable each sax is in your hands. How well do the finger touches match your hands, particularly the left pinky table, something quite different from the clarinet. It's the set of keys used with your left pinky finger to play G# and low C#, B and Bb (lowest note on the sax). Btw, it's the low register fingering that is different between clarinet and sax, the upper register clarinet fingering is nearly the same as the sax.

Finally, listen to the tone of each sop you test play (T/P). Since you have a good ear for when a note is in tune, check for intonation in both registers. If unsure, ask the dealer if you can borrow a tuner to check this.

The sopranos I've owned include a vintage (1925) Conn, Unison S100GG, Monique Pro curved, Antigua Winds A582LQ and my current sop, a Kohlert straight with detachable neck. Of all these, I found the Antigua, Unison and Kohlert to be the most pleasing in all the categories mentioned above. The vintage Conn was uncmfortable and I had problems with the left palm keys (high D, D#, E & F) and the Monique was just not good for me in any department.

After you decide on which sop to get, and I still think Antigua is the best bet for you, you might want to consider getting a better mouthpiece that comes with those horns. I have great luck with a Yanagisawa HR mpc, but this is a whole 'nother subject.

Best of luck,
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member
Alto: Couesnon and Bettersax (by Bundy); Tenor: YTS-61; Sop: Antigua Winds 4280; C-mel: Conn
Joined
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3,161 Posts
DanA - I doubt you'll find new 582LQ's priced any lower than $695. There was another online source that sold them for $595, but even they have now raised their price to $695. And price being equal, I believe Kessler's is the most reliable and customer-oriented online source.
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member
Alto: Couesnon and Bettersax (by Bundy); Tenor: YTS-61; Sop: Antigua Winds 4280; C-mel: Conn
Joined
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3,161 Posts
If the 586 is within your budget, go for it.
 
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