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Hi Everyone,
The Double Ring Jazz Tenor went out this afternoon. We have a pretty long list of participants, so I will get another of this same model started shortly. Please feel free to PM me with any questions.
Thanks again to everyone participating, we look forward to your feedback!

Listen to our mouthpiece samples
 

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Drake ceramic models.

Aaron recently sent me a package containing 3 of his newer mpc models, the ones done after the 2009 re-tooling of his mpc making equipment.
The package contained a DRT 7, DRT 8, CNT 8, and a Custom JTB.
I compared these four mpc's with my older Custom JT Drake model that I really like.

Over the last 2 years, I've become comfortable with my Morgan measurement kit and Theo Wanne digital tip measuring gauge.
I definitely noticed a difference in flatness of the table on these new models, as well as an evenness to the rail numbers. The re-tooling of the equipment seems to have done it's job very well! The change in the glazed areas on the ceramic material also makes for a much smoother and more even surface for the reed.

All three models respond extremely well. It was indeed a challenge for me to figure out which model I prefered. But I ended up keeping the DRT 8 and the Custom JTB.
The sound of the ceramic material is somewhere in between a HR and a Metal mpc.
Ceramic seems to offer the smoothness of an HR, but the brightness of a Metal when played at louder volumes. Ceramic definitely has it's own sound, one that could appeal to both the HR and the Metal mpc users.

In my opinion, I have little doubt that the Drake is one of the better hand made mpc's out there today. And at $159 for the DRT model, it is definitely one of the best priced hand made mpc's you can buy anywhere!

I've had many of my sax player friends try out my older Custom JT model, and no one turned their nose down at them. They were all surprised at how much they liked the mpc.

Attached are 2 mp3's of some doodling.
 

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I liked your sound better on the first sample. Fatter and slightly less buzzy IMO. You sound great and VERY similar on both mouthpieces though.

How do they differ as far as playing goes? Do you think one helps you get the sound you want more easily than the other?

Victor.
 

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I liked your sound better on the first sample. Fatter and slightly less buzzy IMO. You sound great and VERY similar on both mouthpieces though.

How do they differ as far as playing goes? Do you think one helps you get the sound you want more easily than the other?

Victor.
I would have to agree with what you're hearing. (However, the Custom might have had a wayward read at that moment). For me, the Custom has a more immediate response to the reed.
I also think it is more bright then the DRT.
The sound I want more easily? That's the big money question :)

I'll probably take those clips off, and post new ones with the same horn. I'll be able to do that next week.
 

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I just posted two clips and reviews of the "double ring" model and the "contemporary". You can find them here. I always think a sound clip is the best judge of a piece. Check them out and let me know what you think. I really like these two pieces.
I'm trying to decide what to keep and what to send back. Aaron has done a great job with these pieces.
 

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My turn!

Here are some sound clips for you : DRAKE vs PHIL-TONE.
I just recorded these and the RJS 3S I used was rather bright - brighter than I usually like.

I practiced a couple of days and played a gig on this Drake Jazz "Double Ring" model in a .105 tip opening.

I have to say this is a great mouthpiece. Compared to the various Links and Link-like pieces that went in and out of my life this mouthpiece is rather focused and could easily become quite edgy with the right airstream and reed.

Using words to describing sound is always difficult but if you asked me, I'd say it sounded rather smooth BUT bright at the same time. I don't think it would fit someone looking for that raucous old school Don Byas sound but the "modern traditionalists" should definitely give it a try.
The gig I played is a rock'n'roll, r'n'b, pop kinda jazzy sort of thing and it was the perfect kind of mouthpiece for this situation - very versatile.

As with most custom mouthpieces, reed friendliness, ease of playing and quality of craftsmanship are so good it's not even funny. There was just this one strange thing that I had a hard time with dynamics (playing soft - normal - loud) and accentuation but I think it was the reed more than the mouthpiece. I'll play one more gig on it tomorrow, we'll see if I feel the same with a different reed and in a different room.

The size of the beak on this mouthpiece is closer to a metal mouthpiece than a HR one - I thought this was worth mentioning.

If you have any question, please don't hesitate,
Victor.

08/24/09 Edit : as I suspected, with a different reed the mouthpiece sounded and responded way better. I had several people compliment me on my sound at this birthday party I played on Saturday - there was even this keyboard player in the audience who asked for my card. I guess it's a sign I could get a good sound on Drake's mouthpiece!
 

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I know this thread is about the Double Ring but it has also touched multiple times on the Contemporary, which is one of the pieces I used for my own sound samples. The intent was to compare an Aquilasax C-mel with a vintage Buescher C-mel, but you could also use it to compare against a stock Link STM (actually lightly refaced due to damage, but with the intent of repair only -- it plays almost identically to the way it did before the damage and repair) as I play both pieces on both horns.

http://mal-2.com/aquila/

This may seem an odd comparison, using tenor pieces on a C-mel, but that has become my primary instrument. Tenor pieces are a lot easier to find and have a lot more options compared to C-mel pieces, and I generally like the way they sound (at least on the Buescher).

If I had a Double Ring I'd happily test it for you. I have to imagine it would be fairly similar to the Link tests though.
 

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I reviewed the "Double Ring" Jazz Tenor (DRJT) .108 using my 1948 The Martin Tenor. I have to say that this is an outstanding mouthpiece. I have been playing the piece for a little over a week.

Reeds...reeds...reeds..they all worked. Yellow tin Superials, NY Superials, Rico Royals, Rico Select Jazz, Javas (Red/Green) and La Voz. I liked the Yellow tin Superials, RSJ, La Voz the best. Aaron commented in an email that he used La Voz M on a the DRJT 7 clips on his website. (the clips are killin' Aaron!!)

I recently sold a No USA FL Link 7* and this piece reminded me a lot of it. In fact, I liked it better than the Link I had. :shock: The sound of the DRJ is very focused. It is a great jazz piece or can be pushed for a more aggressive sound. This is a very versatile mouthpiece.....especially given the reed friendliness. (one of the most reed friendly pieces I have ever played) Lots of options here.

Fit and finish is amazing, very clean. Tip and rails are thin. The piece is very responsive.

Tone is even (and flexible) throughout the range, subtones, altissimo, overtones...it's all there. I'm not really sure what else to say, because it is such a great piece, except that if you are looking for a killer player in the vein of a great Link STM try a DRJT. You can't beat the price ($159.99), trial period (7 days no restocking fees), and a lifetime warranty. I'll be sending everyone I know looking for a Link STM (type) piece to the Drake DRJT.

I tried a DRJ Alto a while back that I really enjoyed.....I will be purchasing a DRJ Tenor and Alto in the near future. Aaron is really onto something here. A great idea, fantastic product, and flawless execution.

Try one...you can't say it isn't a great piece.
 

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Hey Victor,

I really dig your playing my friend.

And yes, it has taken me this long to get to this thread since it was first posted.;)
Thanks very much man! At least you like my playing. :twisted:

I've entered one of my intense practice periods once again (these seem to come and go) so, hopefully in a few months I should sound even better! :headbang: We need a "warrior" smiley.

Victor.
 
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