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I'm shopping around for a new horn (alto) and came across a Buffet S1 at a store for a little over $1,000. Interesting horn. The neck had a space cut out of it for the high F# key, a funny roller system on the RH pinkie, and it really didn't sound bad at all. The manager told me it was about 20 yrs. old, SN 34166E. Anybody have any info about this horn as to whether it's an intermediate or pro horn.

The reason I ask is that I played it against a used Keilwerth SX90 Nickle (twice the price) and really could not decide which one I liked better. They also had a Buescher 400 that was lightning fast but tone wise not very deep. I'm basically looking for something to replace my stale Yamaha 875.

Thanks people.
 

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Long story short, the S1 is a great pro horn, and 1000 bucks is a pretty good deal most likely

I wish more horns had the LH pinky keys of that horn, with the hinge on the low Bb
 

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Buffet S1s are KILLER and if you can get one for 1000 bucks it's a steal. I would argue for an S1 against practically any other alto ever made. Tone, playability, man, they have it all as far as I'm concerned. Many people pigeonhole them as classical horns, but I tried one that had a great, open sound for jazz not too long ago. Either way you go I don't think you'll ever find that much horn for a grand again.

Have I made my position clear enough? :) I'm a fan of the older Buffets, if you couldn't tell.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Good info, people

Thanks for the info on the S1. I also found a review at shwoodwind that was pretty informative, so I guess it is a pro horn. I thought that the people in the shop would know whether it was a pro or intermediate model but I guess not, but I guess my ears weren't fooling me. I really could not decide which I liked better, the Keilwerth or the S1.

One issue, though. I don't know why but for some reason the neck had a bit of rust (yes, rust) on one side. Water damage, they said. I guess a new neck would be in order. Anyone have an opinion as to which would be better, an Oleg or Glock.

Thanks people.

Also, one more thing. If it is for the European market tuned at 442 I don't think it would be much of a problem since every single piano I've dealt with here in Japan has been 442 or more. Any thoughts on this?
 

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you dont have to worry about the 442 thing. If it was 460 or something i would show concern but 442 is not an issue. Players who have 442 horns and travel to play in the US dont change there horns.
 

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Yes, 442 is no big deal, unless you're talking about reselling it. Then it may be as so many people, mostly hobbyists, are misinformed about this issue. Yes, historically high pitch was around 460 Mhz; in other words something that would be impossible to adjust for to play in most ensembles today. But I was thinking of buying a 442 Mhz horn recently (a Buffet S2, in fact), and those who play these told me they only have to move the mouthpiece on the neck about 1/8'' to compensate.
 

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Your (future) horn is made in the early 80s.
The S1 is one of the finest horns ever made. If you're into classical/chamber music there is no better (imho). I got an S1 tenor which is just marvelous. It can be a little sensitive to small chambered mouthpieces, it goes sharp in the upper register.
Personally I find the keywork great. I've had plans to make my tech copy the pinky keys to my Selmer. They are so effortless.

The 440 vs 442 is just... nonsense (edited from censored word). If one can't play a 442 horn in a 440 environment, the problem, imho, is not in the hardware and thus, getting another horn won't help.
 

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I understood that the S1 was Buffet's jazz sax.

HP, BTW, is 457. 442 as opposed to 440 is not a big deal, in my opinion.
 

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I love my S1 alto, so I'd say a grand is quite a good deal for a decent one--still looking for a tenor, especially a copper-bodied one.
 

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mostly alto guy said:
I love my S1 alto, so I'd say a grand is quite a good deal for a decent one--still looking for a tenor, especially a copper-bodied one.
Present me a _very_ nice Selmer and you _might_ have one... :)
 

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Pinnman said:
I understood that the S1 was Buffet's jazz sax.

HP, BTW, is 457. 442 as opposed to 440 is not a big deal, in my opinion.

No. The S1 was Buffet's saxophone at the time, period. Even Daniel Deffayet (and currently John Harle) play/ed one.
 
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