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Discussion Starter #1
Deep breath.. going out of my comfort zone here (!) with a first ever attempt to create a video, in this case a comparison of various baritone mpcs. I think the technical short-comings will be pretty obvious, so no need to outline these in advance.

However, to set the scene, with lock-down, I am putting some time into the baritone, and trying to finalise a setup I feel comfortable with. I am looking for a soundscape that is suitable for a small group, with breadth, and richness of tone, but with sufficient bite and articulation to cut through when necessary.. Should also be full in the palm keys. The mpcs I have are a vintage Berg 130/2 SMS, a new JJ HR* 8, an RPC blue label .135 high baffle, and a wooden Lebaye 8*, so very diverse physically and sonically and a case can be made for each of them. Volumes should be indicative.

I have found it highly challenging to identify useful mpc - reed combinations, maybe i don't have enough mpcs to trial, and maybe I don't have a sufficient range of reeds, but this is the best that I have so far, where I have tried to reproduce essentially the same phrases.


Grateful for any thoughts and feedback..
thanks
 

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You have a very nice sound. I am a bit surprised at preferring the Berg and RPC. Perhaps, it is because the pieces are so open, but you retain a lot of warmth to the tone, which often seems lost with high baffle mouthpieces.
 

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Which of them allows you to play the bottom end with least effort?
Whenever I’m playing pieces with any decent height baffles, this is often my first criteria.
If I can play the bottom end without honking out the notes and still have a fullness in the palm keys, I know I’m on the right track.
Many Berg facings are on the shorter side, which I have found to be great in the top end but not so great at the bottom.
RPC facings seem to be a bit longer but still have a nice top end, so less need to compromise on reed strength.
I personally preferred the RPC and the LeBayle pieces.
An RPC in a .120-.125 tip might be worth a try if you can find one.
 

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I personally preferred the RPC and the LeBayle pieces.
An RPC in a .120-.125 tip might be worth a try if you can find one.
Pretty much the same impression here. Barring the ability to find an RPC in a 120-.125 tip, I'd spend some time taming the 135, shouldn't take too long and it will definitely be worth it in the end.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
You have a very nice sound. I am a bit surprised at preferring the Berg and RPC. Perhaps, it is because the pieces are so open, but you retain a lot of warmth to the tone, which often seems lost with high baffle mouthpieces.
thanks, the Berg - with this reed - feels like it has the right balance of resistance for me. In the room, it also seems to have a very rich sound, and is not at all sharp (tonally) in the palm keys. I feel the sound profile could be suited to a smaller, more "intimate" settings. I was also surprised at how large the RPC sounds.. unfortunately it is also louder, so not always appreciated by the rest of the family.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Which of them allows you to play the bottom end with least effort?
Whenever I’m playing pieces with any decent height baffles, this is often my first criteria.
If I can play the bottom end without honking out the notes and still have a fullness in the palm keys, I know I’m on the right track.
Many Berg facings are on the shorter side, which I have found to be great in the top end but not so great at the bottom.
RPC facings seem to be a bit longer but still have a nice top end, so less need to compromise on reed strength.
I personally preferred the RPC and the LeBayle pieces.
An RPC in a .120-.125 tip might be worth a try if you can find one.
Your right about the Berg facing here. I like it because it has full upper register without getting shrill, but generally I tend to go for loner facings. With this Marca 1.5, the bottom end is pretty straightforward, but compared to the other mpcs, it probably does not project as well. I feel I still there is still room to optimise the reed combination for the others. Tut he Lebayle is an interesting one, I like the tone, the smaller tip opening makes it easier to get around, but there is not much flexibility in that tone. I think the suggestion for a smaller RPC is a good one - so if anyone ahs one out there.. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Pretty much the same impression here. Barring the ability to find an RPC in a 120-.125 tip, I'd spend some time taming the 135, shouldn't take too long and it will definitely be worth it in the end.
thanks for the feedback, invaluable to get some different perspectives outside of the family which was along the line of "they all sound awful !"
 

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Your right about the Berg facing here. I like it because it has full upper register without getting shrill, but generally I tend to go for loner facings. With this Marca 1.5, the bottom end is pretty straightforward, but compared to the other mpcs, it probably does not project as well. I feel I still there is still room to optimise the reed combination for the others. Tut he Lebayle is an interesting one, I like the tone, the smaller tip opening makes it easier to get around, but there is not much flexibility in that tone. I think the suggestion for a smaller RPC is a good one - so if anyone ahs one out there.. :)
I actually have an RPC 120 B here.
But I also have an RPC .110 Rollover piece.
I’m still tossing up which I prefer.
I like the cut of the 120/B but the rollover tunes way better for me on my 12M.
If you’re interested in the 120/B just PM me and I can send you some photos of it.
 

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thanks for the feedback, invaluable to get some different perspectives outside of the family which was along the line of "they all sound awful !"
There are solution for that problem too you know, but likely more expensive than buying new mouthpieces.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
There are solution for that problem too you know, but likely more expensive than buying new mouthpieces.
Ha ha! well I'm not going to down this path, it could lead anywhere depending on how you want to interpret it :)
 
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