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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have been playing on Fibracell's on my Tenor for the past 2 years and they have been super consistent, responsive, bright and easy to play right out of the packaging. However, the last 2-3 I have purchased have been stuffy, not as easy to blow on, dark, and dull. Nothing at all like my previous ones. Has something changed with their reeds or have I just gotten some unlucky ones the past couple purchases?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thank you for the links. I looked a couple weeks ago and didn't see anything, but after ruling out it being me, I decided to post.
 

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Mine came from Musician's Friend, and they were not playable. As said there's a more full discussion on the Cafe and here in the General discussion section. Suffice it to say that the company denied the possibility of a problem, didn't want to receive the duds back, and went on to tell me I didn't know how to put a reed on a mouthpiece (even though I'd told them I've been play their reeds for over 10 years). They absolutely refuse to stand behind their product. I've got the extra expense of having them shipped to my far corner of the world, so add another $20+ and you've got very expensive duds. If I want to buy dud reeds I can go back to cane...which are at least a lot cheaper!

Fibracell's attitude just doesn't make it in a competitive world and I would be happy to see them go down for not standing behind their product and instead insulting their (up to now) loyal customers.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Just to update on this.... I've tried to play the latest one in to submission and it seems to be working. Maybe what happened is that this latest #3 is just a bit harder than usual. It seems to be responding and "Breaking in" much similar to a cane reed. I'm used to throwing Fibracell's on and going (part of their appeal), so this is new to have to break the reed in. But I think this isn't as much of an issue as I thought it was.
 

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The break-in you mentioned really surprises me. I have played Fibracells for a long time, and I have never noticed any real change in response as the reed accumulates play hours. The response seems steady until one day it just quits. Are you sure that your embouchure isn't adjusting to the reed?
 

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They do break in and get softer with play. When that happens the altissimo usually gets harder to play first . Then it becomes too soft in the other ranges of the horn. I’ve played them exclusively for over 20 years and buy in batches of 5 . The last batch of tenors from Brasswinds sucked . Way too soft and unplayable.
 

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More than likely, you played your previous reed to death, softening it up so much that the new reed seemed harder than usual. I've done that with Fibracells, myself.
 

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More than likely, you played your previous reed to death, softening it up so much that the new reed seemed harder than usual. I've done that with Fibracells, myself.
This.
They get soft and you don’t realize it, then order the same size and it’s too hard. IMHO fibracell are the best of the synthetic bunch and I played them for a couple years until a teacher hipped me to how my sound had gone to ****.
 

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I have a new 2.5 coming from Musician's Friend in the next day or two. I'll let you know what I think of it.
 

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The size 3 I bought earlier this year was like playing on a thin piece of paper. I used to like them back when they were rated as "medium" or "medium hard" etc but now...
 

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I have used a substantial number of Fibracells in the 2.0 to 3.0 range, over the past four years. I think all have been very accurately marked for size, in comparison to each other. For me, 2.0's are almost usable, but very light, 2.5's are perfect, and 3.0's are very hard to blow, to the point of being unplayable. I've not had a reed that didn't fit that observation.
 

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Turns out, I had ordered two 2.5's. They arrived today, and from what I can hear, switching them back and forth, one may sound just a little more muted than the other, but not so much that I would complain about it. I'm fairly sure it will break in, once I start using it regularly.
 

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Just to update on this.... I've tried to play the latest one in to submission and it seems to be working. Maybe what happened is that this latest #3 is just a bit harder than usual. It seems to be responding and "Breaking in" much similar to a cane reed. I'm used to throwing Fibracell's on and going (part of their appeal), so this is new to have to break the reed in. But I think this isn't as much of an issue as I thought it was.
The point of this is that Fibracell has changed. they refuse to acknowledge that it's not the same reed as it was. I use synthetics for consistency and expect each reed to be the same so that I can throw it on and have something that I don't have to adjust to, or physically adjust to make it playable. As said I have no respect for a company that refuses to acknowledge that they have a problem and won't stand behind what they sell. Why should long time satisfied users accept inconsistent substandard reeds? I'm out of there and looking for someone who makes a good consistent product. If you can put up with inconsistency why bother with synthetics? Cane is still a heck of a lot cheaper.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Just an update for those who end up here. Ditch the fibracells. They have gotten worse with quality control even since this original post. Their customer service is horrid. A nice transition from fibracells is the Hartmann Fiberreed Carbon Onyx. Give them a shot. Very similar.
 
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