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Selmer MarkVII Tenor
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HI All :
Is it possible that a certain brand of mouthpiece does not match with another brand of Saxophone ?
I have been trying my Otto Link STM NY 6* with my Selmer Mark VII ( 280XXX) , and after trying many different reeds with different strengths I can not get a good sound with it. But with another mouthpieces it sounds well... What could be the reason of the mismatch ?
Many Thanks
Humbardi
 

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It could be a dud mouthpiece, it's certainly not uncommon for Links. Has it been refaced? I played an HR Link with a Mark VII for a while and it sounded great, even though it was ultimately a bit too focused for my tastes
 

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Hello from Las Vegas Humbardi

..try a different mouthpiece on your Sax...…….some STM can be thick and tubby-stuffy sounding, no matter what reed...dull as hell, sounds awful on ANY tenor..

Here's a tip from an old-timer..for starters try a Claude Lakey HR "Classic" ..order online..reasonably priced, it is a Pro mpc, very versatile for smooth subtone or plenty of edge when needed, your horn will sing. I've played many classic model Lakeys over the yrs and they all sounded the same to me (good)

Check their website, they have very interesting tip sizes.

A Lakey is good to have in your case, and later add on, add your fancy metal Boutique mpc if you have to have one..OR buy another Link and try again, FWIW every STM Link I ever played whether supposedly "good" or "bad" sounded the same to me.

For the Lakey sound listen to "Body & Soul" on my demo tracks (page2) www.box.net/cashsax I'm playing an 8*3 hard rubber Lakey (I don't recommend the metal Lakeys)

BTW you have a very fine sax, nothing wrong there.
 

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Some mouthpieces just work better with certain horns. I have an Ishimori mouthpiece and a refaced Brilhart that are both good mouthpieces. The Brilhart works nicely on my Bundy Special tenor (Keilwerth stencil) an the Ishimori is nice on my Keilwerth New King tenor, but switching them around is not nearly as good, particularly for intonation. Both horns are in good condition (and even made by the same manufacturer). Strange.

I don't know enough about the physics of mouthpieces to explain why certain pieces work better with certain horns (some of the mouthpiece makers/refacers on here might be able to answer that), but it doesn't mean that there is anything wrong with either the horn or the mouthpiece. Since you say the horn sounds good with another mouthpiece, it seems likely that the horn is okay. You can try the mouthpiece on another horn to see if there is a problem with the mouthpiece or a player/mouthpiece incompatibility.
 

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I'm not a MK V11 fan but, putting that aside they work better with m/p's with straight inner sidewalls-Links are concave. V11's were designed to have a very focused sound favoured by 'classical' or legit ( that word again!) players. Back in the 70's the cats on the 'dark side' -Funk/Crossover/ Rock/Commercial etc. needed a bright sound with loads of altissimo -that was the style back then-everything was going electric and guitar players were the new gods. Brilhart 'Level Air' pieces were the go to m/p and in the UK Wolfe Taynes became popular as well. These m/p's seemed to work well with 7's .
BTW these are my observations and opinions, as a working muso in that era in UK/Europe just in case the young upstarts on here start chiming in!
 

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I've been watching (sometimes trying) many new/old mpcs Parade by for a long time. But here's the deal, my Lakeys Tenor and Alto have been with me over 35 yrs and still are..they are as good or better than many a foo-foo boutique. (I know, I've blew a few Grand finding out..) Yes there's better, I have a couple, handmade and not cheap. On this Forum Lakeys have a reputation, well it's BS..they'll say terrible quality, screechy, shrill, too loud blah blah..ALL that crap started on this forum. I know I watched it..I had played my Tenor mpc(bought from Claude) for well over 20 yrs before I ever saw this forum. Also I had played my share of Links Bergs Brilharts Dukoffs Runyons etc..

In the last 3 yrs I have bought 2 new Lakeys from current website, they are the basic hard rubber "classic" versions and they are both perfectly fine..I see a lot of sour grape posts, a Lakey doesn't play itself. It's very sensitive and may take some good chops to play it to it's full potential, Paul Desmond sometimes played a Lakey.

So many mpcs..but which one ?? I know I been there, a step up for you is a handmade, I see great deals these days on mpcs that are phenomenal, but they'll cost more than a Lakey. On my '68 VI Tenor and my '49 Big B I play a Vigilante and one of 10mfans creations, both incredible..I keep lurking to see what you get and how your VII responds.
 

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I've been watching (sometimes trying) many new/old mpcs Parade by for a long time. But here's the deal, my Lakeys Tenor and Alto have been with me over 35 yrs and still are..they are as good or better than many a foo-foo boutique. (I know, I've blew a few Grand finding out..) Yes there's better, I have a couple, handmade and not cheap. On this Forum Lakeys have a reputation, well it's BS..they'll say terrible quality, screechy, shrill, too loud blah blah..ALL that crap started on this forum. I know I watched it..I had played my Tenor mpc(bought from Claude) for well over 20 yrs before I ever saw this forum. Also I had played my share of Links Bergs Brilharts Dukoffs Runyons etc..

In the last 3 yrs I have bought 2 new Lakeys from current website, they are the basic hard rubber "classic" versions and they are both perfectly fine..I see a lot of sour grape posts, a Lakey doesn't play itself. It's very sensitive and may take some good chops to play it to it's full potential, Paul Desmond sometimes played a Lakey.

So many mpcs..but which one ?? I know I been there, a step up for you is a handmade, I see great deals these days on mpcs that are phenomenal, but they'll cost more than a Lakey. On my '68 VI Tenor and my '49 Big B I play a Vigilante and one of 10mfans creations, both incredible..I will keep lurking to see what you get and how your VII responds.
Oh yeah I'm in the VII club too, I have an alto:whistle:
 

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There are lots of possibilities and they cannot be identified by analyzing what you write. If you want to have a reasoned comparison provide audio files.


The most important thing is, you just switched horn and your total experience is not such that you can do this without a period of getting used to , your body is still used to a different horn and it needs to adapt.

Don’t start looking at necks and mouthpieces before you have given it time. Go see a better player and give your horn to him see how he plays, therei is a VERY good chance that the weakest link is neither the horn nor the mouthpiece.
 

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If Mojo worked on your STM, I'm sure there's nothing amiss with it. Based on my experience, I think the components that produce the sound work together as a system: horn, mouthpiece, reed, embouchure, and oral and chest cavities. Change any component and the system changes. Some components seem more adaptable than others. For example, my SML stencil works very well with Links and several other pieces, but my Yamaha 875 won't stay in tune with any Link I've tried; it works well with very few mouthpieces, primarily a Warburton LA. So it's not surprising that your Mk VII might prefer a different mouthpiece as part of the system.
 

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What are the other mouthpieces and in what way do they sound better? Brighter/darker, focused/spread? Response in different registers?
 

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One other thought.....the STM ligature is difficult to align so make sure the reed is exactly even on the rails and the reed is tight on the table.
 

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I play a later series VI, and for years I have struggled with the idea that I *should* be happy playing a rollover larger chamber piece like an link on my horn, but to no avail. My horn just seems to open up and respond better with a mpc that has more baffle. So I keep going back to my RPC baffled models, I feel like they bridge the gap well for me. I have read another comment from a player who had a horn similar era to mine who had the same experience, so maybe there's something to that. Its not like the sound gets brighter, but rather the response and resonance opens up. Go figure...
 

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MkVII tenors can and do play well with Link and Link style pieces.
The fact that some prefer higher baffles and or smaller chambers doesn’t change this fact.
Perhaps a link type piece just isn’t your thing.
Just as I would never put a Berg or Guardala type piece on my VII.
Or on any horn for that matter.
Simply my preference, which doesn’t mean it wouldn’t be a nice combination for someone who likes these types of pieces.
My point is don’t listen to those who tell you that this is a bad combination, as the fact that they couldn’t make it work doesn’t mean it can’t or doesn’t work.
 

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I think this is all subjective and personal. I think it is just you don't like the sound of the STM NY. I have a STM non NY 7*, and I wonder if the tip is too big for me. I first bought a 6* non-NY, then get a 6* NY refaced in a trade. Afterwards, I bought another 6* NY by accident thinking it is an alto. So, I have 4 STM and they all sound different. Even the two 6* NY sound different, but the core characteristic is still the same. My original 7* has the biggest difference though. I still like my initial 7* more. The non NY is slightly darker, but not by a lot. So, just try another brand, I would say.


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