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Reviving a post like Lazarus, and I apologize for it. But as a 'newer' player myself, I've bought into the synthetic reed idea. I prefer the darker 'classical' sound myself and have been using Vandoren traditional blue boxes almost exclusively but got Legere sig. 3 and 3.5 for both my tenor and alto and to my novice ear was happy enough with the sound to not open any new reeds for a bit. However contrary to most folks I'd felt as if they were half a strength lower than cane.... until this week! I hadn't played my tenor in almost a month and 35 minutes in to my first practice a few days ago my lower portion of my embrochure was quite sore, which has never happened; actually couldn't form my lip to my reed anymore level of sore! I had a box of the Vandoren v12's in a 3 strength sitting unopened for 6 weeks that I'd been looking for a reason to use. So the following evening I cracked one open, wetted it and played it without any reed prep, and a 2nd one with what little prep I normally do for 5 minutes each, and I'm kinda surprised with both! They're.. well... hmm. Given my inexperience I don't wanna say better or definitely darker. But to start off, the reed is thicker and I can feel a bit more vibration in the reed itself when tonguing it. Secondly, they (for me) have a slightly more clarion quality to them, meaning it's almost as if they help the horn project a tad bit more, but the notes also sound...cleaner? more precise? I dunno, but I'll say overall more akin to what I'd consider a 'classical sound' than my blue box reeds, to the effect of maybe 10ish% more in line with my sound concept, if I were to quantify it? I'm gonna open the other 3 in the next few days and see if I get that same response! If the OP's still on here maybe this will help, as the alto reeds will likely net me the same result once I get some of them.
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