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Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2017
Picked up a sax in 2002 and here I am.
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This is true. If I remember correctly there was a lot more changes to the Alto than the Tenor when they went from the 2001 to the Medusa. As for high prices, it is true there are some fairly high prices out there. I saw someone selling a Guardala for $7500.
Yeah, the gold brass Medusa alto I owned was a very different horn from my 2001 lacquered and Chicago Jazz black nickel altos. Really a fabulous horn and the best alto I’ve ever played, including a great early VI. Intonation was locked in and the horn played very evenly across the range, even sub-toning easily, like the tenors. I sold that horn during a period when my health was keeping me from playing. Should have kept that one!
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2015-
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This is true. If I remember correctly there was a lot more changes to the Alto than the Tenor when they went from the 2001 to the Medusa. As for high prices, it is true there are some fairly high prices out there. I saw someone selling a Guardala for $7500.
Did it actually sell for $7500? That seems magical thinking.
 

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I have a gold brass Medusa tenor with three necks. It’s in every way a pro horn with a big unique voice. I’ve toyed with selling it because I have 4 tenors.
 

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I once picked up a 2001 tenor for low money. It was hardly played and the seller told me it just needed some adjustment. There was not much adjustment needed, but it turned out that the pads, although tight with a leak light, had some porousity in them that caused diffuse leackage. I had them replaced from D downwards which helped the low tones a lot. The pads were not old or worn out, they just did not seal well by themselves, bad pads. I do not know whether all B&S horns had the same kind of pads, but at least on some these pads for sure have downgraded the horns. My tech has a 2001 alto suffering from the same problem. This is a real pity, as otherwise the build quality of these two horns is excellent, snappy mechanics, and a beautiful voice. I was thinking about a complete pad job, but then got hands on a superduper Martin Committee II, which for now is all I need.
 

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Discussion Starter · #26 · (Edited)
So I hear there’s a lot of love for the medusa model. Now I know the majority of you are going to laugh at this and then someone’s gonna wisely say “do you plan on looking at it or playing it?!?” well fortunately I would like to do both and I’m not ashamed to say that I often catch myself staring at the engravings and saxophones online and at music stores all the time. As an artist myself a beautiful hand done engraving is the most important part of my buying process so long as the horn is reputable. That and it’s finish. Anyways with that said I really can’t get along with that medusa engraving. Now this is just my opinion, so don’t get mad at me but I feel like it looks very similar to the cheesy machined engravings that a lot of companies have been doing lately most notably cannon ball. They are such gorgeous horns with absolutely stunning finishes, maybe even the very best. At least in thier variety of unique finishes however they then immediately “in my own opinion”slap on the most butt ugly cookie cutter type machined engravings I’ve ever seen. Unless of course you take out your wallet once again and opt for one Of their five or six different custom tier hand engravings. So at this point I’d have to say no to the medusa. However I really do like the one that Robbie posted a picture of. His has a nice looking engraving. It’s the same color as my alto and soprano and from what he says he loves it so that might very well be a good option so long as I can find one in good condition. Anyways keep keep them coming guys keep them coming
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2017
Picked up a sax in 2002 and here I am.
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2,177 Posts
So I hear there’s a lot of love for the medusa model. Now I know the majority of you are going to laugh at this and then someone’s gonna wisely say “do you plan on looking at it or playing it?!?” well fortunately I would like to do both and I’m not ashamed to say that I often catch myself staring at the engravings and saxophones online and at music stores all the time. As an artist myself a beautiful hand done engraving is the most important part of my buying process so long as the horn is reputable. That and it’s finish. Anyways with that said I really can’t get along with that medusa engraving. Now this is just my opinion, so don’t get mad at me but I feel like it looks very similar to the cheesy machined engravings that a lot of companies have been doing lately most notably cannon ball. They are such gorgeous horns with absolutely stunning finishes, maybe even the very best. At least in thier variety of unique finishes however they then immediately “in my own opinion”slap on the most butt ugly cookie cutter type machined engravings I’ve ever seen. Unless of course you take out your wallet once again and opt for one Of their five or six different custom tier hand engravings. So at this point I’d have to say no to the medusa. However I really do like the one that Robbie posted a picture of. His has a nice looking engraving. It’s the same color as my alto and soprano and from what he says he loves it so that might very well be a good option so long as I can find one in good condition. Anyways keep keep them coming guys keep them coming
If we’re talking tenor then check out the model 2001, same great horn but with traditional engraving. The Sand finish Allora tenor I owned had very elaborate engraving, even including the inside rim of the bell.
 

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I tried one of these tenors with the New York skyline at USA Horn in Jersey almost twenty years ago. There I got to play it alongside just about every new Selmer horn out there at the time, as well as a handful of vintage VI tenors. It felt cheap and inferior in direct comparison, and I absolutely hated it. I know many here really dig B&S horns and their stencils. A Medusa tenor I tried about ten years ago was a much nicer horn and built more solidly than the Guardala. As a point of interest, Guardala's ex-business partner claimed on an old message board that the Guardala horns were conceived as a student/intermediate model... though of course he felt they turned out better than that. I beg to differ.
For what it is worth, due to this thread I started searching more about B&S and Guardala horns. I came across a Guardala horn that was not marked Made in Germany like all the B&S-made horns. It had the NY Skyline engraving. I wonder if these were made elsewhere post B&S?
 

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Well, the tenor I tried at USA Horn may well have been an Amati. I didn't examine it too closely, just remember the NY skyline. As I mentioned before, a B&S Medusa tenor I gave a go was a fine horn.
 

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The main easy differences between B&S and Amati: design of the ring between the bell and the body and the serial numbers. B&S has a small s/n, Amati - 300K.
 

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there is one for sale right now, who knows how popular it really is, it says made in Germany so it is certainly NOT an Amati



103993
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2007-
saxophone, flutes and lil' bit of clarinet
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Discussion Starter · #40 ·
Thanks guys. I really cant begin to say how grateful I am that so any contributed to this thread with ZERO nonsense or wise/rude comments. Im loving this place. SoI just wanted to come back and post some thing that I found on eBay. I believe I was wrong when I said I was looking for the New York series, however I’m not positive I basically just really like the one that Nigel from McGill Sax school has. It’s either that or the Artist series. Anyways here she is. I definitely am not gonna be buying it at that price however especially after I heard nothing really great from you are on this thread. However I’m hoping someone can chime in and change my mind LOL I’m not the best in the world I don’t play saxophone for a living. I have been playing for over 20 years though and for what I need it for I believe looks are to be just as important as performance. I know crazy but unfortunately that’s how I feel. At least at the moment LOL so here’s the link if anyone can shed some light on whether or not this is any different from the New York matI know crazy but unfortunately that’s how I feel. At least at the moment LOL so here’s a link if anyone can shed some light on whether or not this is any different from the New York model shown above.


cheers
Sean
 
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