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I'm by no means a beginner, but I am in need of a professional saxophone. I'm a freshman in college, majoring in music and taking alto sax lessons for the first time (I've been playing alto for 8 years) on the vito alto I got in fifth grade. My teacher said that I needed to get a new one, and soon, as even he can't get the low b-flat to make noise.

I was told by him to find a yamaha, and I'm looking at a YAS-6211 ($2260 is pretty steep for a college student) and a friend told me to get a jupiter (his was $1600, and I found one on sale for $1300). So I guess my question is, which would be best to buy? Which would be a better investment, and which is just better in general? Also, if anyone knows of another type of alto that is cheaper, but still a good choice? I am a broke college student, after all, and the thousand dollar projections make me sad. Or if anyone knows of anyone who's selling a used professional grade alto, that would be cool too.

Thank you! :D
 

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Hello and welcome to the forum,
There are a lot of good choices out there for less than 2k in this buyer's market. I am selling a great horn on ebay right now that is going to go for less than 1k all day long.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Vito-France...812?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item2a13e80784

Here is one more from our forum:

http://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?166390-FS-Yanagisawa-A-901-Alto-Saxophone


Believe me, you can find many many more. If you need help looking at one that has piqued you're interest, let me know. I have a decent eye. Ebay horns can either be great or terrible. Don't buy new!! unless you like paying more and taking a 1k loss the second you leave the music store.
 

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The last Yamaha 62 (I don't even recall if it had more numbers or letters beyond the "62") I played (a new one a few years ago at Kessler's in Las Vegas) was not impressive. Of course, it could have been just that one example. I think you need to play both the Jupiter and the Yamaha before making a choice, though. While some rile against Taiwanese-made saxophones, there are some that can fool you and end up to be good players.

And, don't look at it as an investment - VERY few used saxophones ever go up in price even keeping pace with inflation. If possible, consider a Yanagisawa-anything before putting down your hard-earned money. DAVE
 

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If I may make a comment before this thread goes off into hyperspace...since it's based on an erroneous premise to begin with.

Your old Vito.

It's either a Beaugnier-designed horn from pre-'80's...or it's a YAS 23 stencil.

Those are good horns. For your teacher to say get rid of it...because it doesn't speak up and down...is, to put it nicely....a bit.... mistaken. [rolleyes] A horn's ability to speak cleanly up and down has nothing to do with the model or vintage of the horn.....

Rather than go lay down the $ for a 62, or some other reputedly "intermediate" or better model....which will be expensive whether new or used...why don't you just take less than half of that $ and have a tech work your current horn up real good ?

Whether your Vito is one or the other....it is completely appropriate for your situation as described, providing it has been set up properly by a decent tech. Maybe a few years down the road you will want something else, but these are good horns and it doesn't sound like a necessity now.
 

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While I do agree with this sentiment, consider this. The OP is a first year college music major. Although both the old and new Vitos are nice serviceable horns, no one would confuse them with pro horns. I suspect that as a college music major the OP aspires to be a pro (in at least some variation of the word). It is likely that the Vito was not rejected by the instructor solely because it's not in playing condition and probably not solely because it's a Vito. Rather, the combination of the two makes it a smarter move to just get a pro level horn that plays (given the college path of the OP). It's also likely that the advice "Just get a new teacher" would require another audition and changing colleges. Sounds like it would be much easier to get a new horn.
 

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The OP is a college music major with a performance concentration in saxophone. Time to bite the bullet and get the best tool for the job available. The smartest thing I ever did was to take a bank loan to purchase a Mark VI when I was a Sr. in high school. I washed dishes and cleaned floors to pay off the loan in one year. It does not matter that my old 6M was a great instrument....(if in need of an overhaul)....I had the main-stream instrument that my peers were also playing, and it was in perfect playing condition. The whole teaching/learning process was easier because of this.

College costs are sky-high......Why spend the money if you are not going to invest in the primary tool that you are learning about? This saxophone is a significant and important investment for the OP. He or she will be using the tool for many years and it is the gateway to a career in performance, teaching or some other aspect of the music industry. The appreciation or depreciation of the horn is an insignificant part of the equation. That Mark VI alto was the gateway to an entire career in music and education for me. The financial and personal rewards have far outweighed the significant, (at the time) cost of $650.00.

The OP's Vito was probably used in high school for all manner of tasks and may have been run through the mill. A good overhaul will make it play well, but it is not going to be a college level recital horn, especially if the OP really takes off as a player.

My advice to the OP is to spend some time talking to the saxophone teacher about what instrument he or she would like you to play and why. Ask for help locating an instrument that is acceptable. Many good teachers will get involved in the search for the right instrument for their students. We are just an internet forum and do not know what is in the mind of your teacher. Different schools of playing look for different equipment to achieve the sound concept that they are trying to achieve.
 
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