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Discussion Starter #1
Is it just me or do spread type pieces sound dull and fuzzy to the player.
Or am I hearing something else?
I recently got a tenor piece which is described by its maker as a spread sounding piece.
It plays reasonably well apart from some low end resistance, but is for me as the player, pretty dull and lifeless.
I typically like Link STM type pieces which many feel can be stuffy, but this piece to me sounds very stuffy or muted.
Even when you put some good air through it, it is just a louder dull sound.
Strangely though, when recorded it sounds quite good.
The edge that you don’t here as the player comes through more and it sounds quite colourful.
I’m not going to name the piece as it really makes little difference.
I’m just curious if this is a trait of more spread type pieces?
Or perhaps this piece just may be way more spread than I am used to.
 

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SOTW Columnist and Forum Contributor 2015-2016
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To me it sounds like the piece is much more spread than you are used to and might have less edge. Your ears might be searching for a tighter core with buzz to define the sound, but listening back on the recording might reveal that you're getting more "tone" and less "white noise" from the piece. I usually think a Link STM on tenor has a bit more focus than not. Also be aware of how materials can interact with your jaw muscles/bones/ears to create a different aural sensation. Sometimes this makes us think a piece sounds a certain way.

Of course, maybe it's just really stuffy. Who knows? :)

- Saxaholic
 

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I'm not so sure that "spread" or "focused" really comes through to the listener. "Dull" does, certainly, as does "shrill", but no matter what, you will still sound like you; these are just the ends of the spectrum which is you. Which is why the recording you made sounds OK.

It's really a matter of what FEELS GOOD to the player. If the mouthpiece feels good, you will too, and you will play better. More focus in your sensation, more focus in your playing. Bottom line - if you don't like the piece, don't play it :)
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I'm not so sure that "spread" or "focused" really comes through to the listener. "Dull" does, certainly, as does "shrill", but no matter what, you will still sound like you; these are just the ends of the spectrum which is you. Which is why the recording you made sounds OK.

It's really a matter of what FEELS GOOD to the player. If the mouthpiece feels good, you will too, and you will play better. More focus in your sensation, more focus in your playing. Bottom line - if you don't like the piece, don't play it :)
Thanks.
I’m still evaluating the piece as i received it yesterday.
There is something about it’s tone that I do like.
It has a nice darkness about it, but the way the sound sort of dilutes as it come out is hard to get used to.
Hard to describe but it’s almost as though your blowing the horn through a doorway into another room.
I’ll get some other reeds into it and see where that takes it and will even get my wife to stand in the room with me and tell me what she hears when I play it.
I guess I am just wondering if perhaps this is simply a “spread sounding piece” and am not used to that type of sound?
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2015-
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I've played pieces that some might call "focused" that I, and others, would characterize as shrill and lacking character. Similarly, some will label as "spread" a piece that is just dull and stuffy.

Something that is dull and stuffy just won't carry a large space, and has no body to its sound. No thanks - might as well buy a crappy horn full of leaks, and a box of waterlogged reeds. Ewwwww...

My concept of "spread" is a mouthpiece that feels like it fills a room with its sound, regardless of whether it is mic'd. The sound is pervasive in a section, and the bari player at the opposite end of the row can hear it clearly.

"Focused", in contrast, is a combination of horn and mouthpiece that feels like it projects forward, like a beam, such that the person sitting next to you in a section may not hear it as well, even though it has a strong sound to someone in front of it or a microphone.

"Spread" is no excuse for stuffy. "Sometimes bad is bad" - Huey Lewis.
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2007-
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Interesting thread but why is it in the Tech Science area?
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2007-
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Okay😊
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I'd prefer not to say what the piece is as it is only my experience with it and doesn't necessarily represent how these pieces play on a whole.
It is a lower baffled hard rubber tenor piece.
 

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That is so true.
That's why mpc makers make different models.
A Guardala Super King lover will find almost every vintage hr mpc dull except maybe some Bergs. A Slant Sig lover will find almost every Guardala unbearable. :)

There is something for everyone out there.
 

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Forum Contributor 2016, Distinguished SOTW Member
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Regardless of the piece, I would try playing it for a week or two and see what happens. You might be surprised. I have been playing a Guardala type piece for the last couple of weeks and I went to one of my favorite darker HR tenor pieces and I could barely play it. Sounds dull, stuffy and super spread. I know if I play that piece for a few days I will adjust to it and then I will love it. What piece were you playing before this one?
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Regardless of the piece, I would try playing it for a week or two and see what happens. You might be surprised. I have been playing a Guardala type piece for the last couple of weeks and I went to one of my favorite darker HR tenor pieces and I could barely play it. Sounds dull, stuffy and super spread. I know if I play that piece for a few days I will adjust to it and then I will love it. What piece were you playing before this one?
Florida Link STM’s were my go to pieces before this one and continue to be what I return to.
 
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