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Hello everyone.

I am searching for a Mark VI soprano saxophone within the $2K-$3K range of pricing. This is becoming increasingly difficult to find. Then, I stumbled upon Yanagisawa's first soprano saxophone model, the S-6, which is a direct copy, appearance wise, of the Mark IV.

But the question remains: Does it play like a Mark VI? Is it a good alternative? Is it as light as a Mark IV?

Thank you.
 

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i have the yani and it physically feels quite heavy and solid, it sounds great, i love it! and its really affordable and from what ive heard more reliable than some mk vi sopranos,
intonation is unquestionably good
 

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some of the mark vi soprano's are good but, I would go with an yanigisawa or yamaha -- but if you can find a good mark vi get it ! --- it will be better than anything .
 

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Soprano player here for over 30 years. The Yani S6 was designed after the Selmer VI. They honestly sound the same, however, the intonation with the Yani is slightly superior. While a MK VI soprano will cost you about 3K, you should be able to pick up a good Yani S6 for around 600.00 - 1000.00.
 

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Did the Yani sopranos change a lot with the next models after the S-6 (S800?) in terms of sound? Or did they simply go to a more modern palm key mechanism?
 

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I'm increasingly convinced that the S-6 is the sax bargain of all time: a Mk VI, only it plays in tune, but without the cachet and the price tag, especially if you get one of the many stencils. But when they say, "Fantastic sound! Is that a Selmer?" who with any street cred is going to say, "Naw, it's a cheap Jap copy"? So better to fork out 3 grand and play out of tune.

It reminds me of my 1984 Tokai Stratocaster - better than the Fender original, though no Fender owner would admit it.
 

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Except...I know a lot of folks who love and revere the Mk VI tenors and alto, and only 1 who feels the same way about the Mk VI soprano.
 

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Would that be Andy Sheppard, or John Coltrane?
 

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potiphar said:
Would that be Andy Sheppard, or John Coltrane?

I think Coltrane would have switched to Yamaha if he had lived a few more years.:arrgh:
 

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It seems either you're a VI soprano person or you're NOT. If you not sure then clearly purchase the S-6 - Play it for a year or so. Get the feel of the VI Style soprano and then start a serious search for the MARK VI. You may find that you may prefer the Yani S-6 and save yourself TONS of money.

On the other hand, if you play the S-6 for a couple months and the palm keys still feel strange. The side keys seem to be in the wrong place. Sell the horn and buy a Yamaha. :D Either way - you'll save tons of money.
 

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My Mark VI plays perfectly in tune, and I have no problem with the so-called difficult ergonomics. The Yani copy may be an option for those who can't swing the price tag of a VI, but it will always lack something...
 

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hakukani said:
I think Coltrane would have switched to Yamaha if he had lived a few more years.:arrgh:
Jeff Coffin? Plays Yamaha Tenor and Mk VI soprano. Probably hasn't realised Yamaha make a soprano.
 

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MM said:
Did the Yani sopranos change a lot with the next models after the S-6 (S800?) in terms of sound? Or did they simply go to a more modern palm key mechanism?
I have a Yani/Martin stencil (S6, I am pretty sure). I figured that since it was a good horn, the 991 would be even better. I got a 991. After a few weeks it was clear that I liked the tone of the S6 better, so I sold the 991. I don't know about the earlier 800/880 horns though. So yes they changed, and quite a bit. I have SAT in Yani/Martin stencils. From comparing to later Yani's it seems that the brass is somehow different. It feels stiffer on the Yani/Martin horns.
 

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By the way, The VITO Stencils of the S-6 may be the best value.
 

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A Greene said:
By the way, The VITO Stencils of the S-6 may be the best value.
You've owned both, so what would you say were the significant differences between the S-6 and the VI, especially in tone?
 

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I purchased a VITO S-6 Stencil in a local shop simply to resell. At the time I was playing a Yamaha 62R and didn't even consider keeping the Vito.

There are a couple show-type players in the area that have the Vito's and find them dependable and extremely usable. These guys are pros and aren't about to spend 3 Grand on a horn when a $600 horn does the job.

I play a Selmer VI (at least for now) because I like the Selmer VI sound. Simple as that.
 

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potiphar said:
I'm increasingly convinced that the S-6 is the sax bargain of all time: a Mk VI, only it plays in tune, but without the cachet and the price tag, especially if you get one of the many stencils. But when they say, "Fantastic sound! Is that a Selmer?" who with any street cred is going to say, "Naw, it's a cheap Jap copy"? So better to fork out 3 grand and play out of tune.

It reminds me of my 1984 Tokai Stratocaster - better than the Fender original, though no Fender owner would admit it.
The Yani is a copy of the MarkVI but plays better in tune? Is there anyone that really believes this? I've tried the S-6 and found it had the same quality that other Japanese horns have, no "ring" to the sound. If you are more worried about price than sound, then go with the Yani.
 

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Whaler makes a good point about the incongruity of a copy playing better than the original. I have a Taiwanese-MKVI clone that exhibits all the characteristices (good and bad) that my MKVI soprano had.

I had/have Japanese sopranos that have a nice "ring" in their tone, though.
My limited experiences with Yanagisawa versions of the MKVI, and the actual MKVI tell me that given a choice, I'd go for the Selmer, if for no other reason than the cachet of it all. DAVE
 
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