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Discussion Starter #1
Hi friends, sorry if this is another newby question... I have a soprano from saxophone.com buyed 2 years ago,and is the instrument that i introduce myself to soprano saxophones. Now I can play in tune (most times) and I am confortable in this instrument. 6 months ago I buyed a runyon quantum mouthpiece and the upper notes b2, c2, c#2 are very flat. I introduced the mouthpiece as long as I can, but without success. With the original mouthpiece I can play in tune, but the sound is poor. Is time to other soprano or I made thewrong choice on Mouthpiece?

Sorry for the English, my language is portuguese... :mrgreen::mrgreen:
 

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I think you should explore different mouthpieces. The notes you described (b2, c2, etc.) are in the mid-range of the horn, though - counting from the bottom to the top. I suspect you may be describing b3, c3, etc. - the notes near the upper range of the instrument.

I too have difficulty playing Runyon soprano mouthpieces at pitch at those notes - and I've been playing soprano for over 50 years. Everyone reacts differently to mouthpieces, but some experimentation may prove to be enlightening.

Also, a lot of the cause for poor intonation (or good intonation, too) is reed strength, brand, and cut, AND matching reeds to mouthpieces. So, rather than buying another soprano, at least for now, I recommend you find a store with a good selection of soprano mouthpieces and begin the testing process. When you find the ONE, you'll know it. DAVE
 

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You did not mention the reed strength you use or the size of the tip opening on the two mouthpieces. These are very important. You should try different mouthpiece tip openings and different reed strengths. You will have to adjust your reed strength to your blowing style. It does not sound like the horn is in need of replacement. That would be a last resort.
 

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On the flip side of the equation, I have a Runyon Quantum Delrin #6 mouthpiece which is now my main soprano piece. Works very well for me and no significant problems at all. It is quite a warm sounding mouthpiece, and I prefer it to the Selmer Classic Metal, Bari HR and Runyon Custom mpcs that I also own. I doubt that this mouthpiece would be causing the problems you mentioned, but it could be a matching issue with your soprano saxophone.

One cheap experiment would be to get a Yamaha 4C or 5C mouthpiece to try on your soprano and see if that solves the problem. These are cheap to buy, and good enough mouthpieces for many people.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thank you friends, My runyon is an 6 opening, the original mouthpiece of instrument is an chinese one without no number on it. I usually use rico jazz 2 with both the mouthpieces, and they are very comfortable to me, my unic problem is the intonation problem... I really like the sound of the runyon, mas I can not put the instrument in tone in the left hand...Here we don`t have sopranos or mouthpieces for test ... thenmy chances are to read all you write to me...
You are great!!!
 

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Discussion Starter #8
It's an straight saxophone.com soprano, and the notes are about 30% flat... but only with the runyon... Who knows someone has an suggestion of other mouthpiece?
 

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This an old story but it needs to be stated here. I'll bet that Runyon mouthpiece of yours is not shoving onto the cork far enough to bring that particular set-up to pitch. I have a Runyon soprano piece that has a too-short neck receiver, so that when it is as far on the neck as possible (meaning the neck is butted up against the chamber-opening and won't go any further), it still isn't on far enough to play to pitch.

I have another Runyon piece that will shove on far enough - and when it is on far enough, the horns play to pitch with it. I had similar troubles with vintage sopranos that had ribbing around the upper-octave pip. The ribbing prevented some of my longer mouthpieces from going far enough on the neck. I had some of the barrel cut off several mouthpieces (shortening the overall length of the mouthpieces) and then they were able to shove on far enough so the vintage sops played to pitch.

So, take another look at your Runyon and tell us how far it is shoving onto the cork/neck. Is the neck all the way into the mouthpiece's barrel? If so, you'll need to either shorten the Runyon OR find a shorter mouthpiece. For shorter sop mouthpieces, the Selmer Super Sessions are among the shortest I've seen. DAVE
 

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I used to own a Runyon 6 "The Spoiler" when I played a 1995 EM Winston Pro1 soprano (it came with a Rico Royal B5, that sounded even worse!). I switched to a Rovner metal Deep V #6, and tone and intonation improved vastly! I now use this setup (along with a Drake Ceramic Production in .055) on my 1920s Conn curved soprano. Intonation is actually better, and tone fuller on this soprano than with the cheap Taiwan import.

Similar mouthpieces to the two I own are a Selmer Super Session (similar to the Drake) and a Jody Jazz DV (similar to the Rovner Deep V).
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thank you very much!!
Dave, I put the runyon mouthpiece as far as I can in the neck but still out of tone... I agree with you, the mouthpiece is not short enough... Now I need decide if I will change the mohtpiece or the saxophone.
Thank you very much my friends!
P.S. Anyone can tell anything about the saxophone.com? Any experience? Would I change for an yamaha or antigua winds soprano?
 

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After I last posted, I got to thinking about what I'd posted (not that I didn't think about it BEFORE, just that my light-bulb turned on).

I made a mistake in one thing . . . if that Runyon mouthpiece is all the way onto the neck (meaning the top of the neck is completely inside the mouthpiece's neck-receiver, aka barrel), then no amount of shortening of the mouthpiece is going to change anything. The piece is on as far as it will go. That is exactly the problem I have with one of my Runyons - a fatal flaw. Yes, I have another Runyon that has more length in its interior and can take the neck further. Make sure it isn't the thickness of the neck-cork that is stopping you from shoving on further.

So, if the neck is truly in all the way, your answer is a new mouthpiece if you ever hope to play that horn in an ensemble.

As to the saxophone.com horn, I haven't seen anything lately about these instruments, but recall reading about them years ago when I first came to SOTW. At the time, those who owned them liked them. I'm guessing it was a typical-for-the-time Taiwanese-made soprano . . . decent enough. I have two Taiwanese sops, one being an Antigua 590LQ, a copy of a Yanagisawa S991. It is a good player with a good scale. But I also have three Yanagisawas, so I play them more. All play well, but there is a world of difference among them - the Yanagisawas are superb.

If you find a Yamaha that speaks to your heart, then a trade-up may work for you. I don't think switching to an Antigua would be of much benefit, given that your current horn is probably a decent player.

Given your stated choices, I'd not do either one and maybe move to a Selmer Serie II or any of the Yanagisawas. But it seems like your major problem is playing in tune with a mouthpiece that is impossible to allow that. A simple mouthpiece change would be the simplest and cheapest way to go. DAVE
 

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A follow-up . . . this AM I was going through my soprano pieces and found my two Runyons. I stuck my ball-point pen up the barrel of both and roughly measured the depth of the neck-receiver. The one that plays flat was about 1/4" more shallow than the one that plays to pitch. DAVE
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Hi Dave, today I was with a friend that has some mouthpieces: vandoren optimum and V5 and a Selmer C*, and a Rico Metalite... Ok, they are only a few options, but I improve the tone with the Selmer S 80C* and the vandorens, I think that I will try this one (selmer) by some time. I think that runyon seems to be the problem.
Thank all of you guys. Obrigado!
 
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