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new to soprano's, seeking advice

1804 Views 8 Replies 9 Participants Last post by  Captain Beeflat
I have played my Couf Superba 1 for 30+ years. Joined another band about 2-years ago and they needed an alto. I picked up a Rampone Jazz 1 and really enjoy the horn. The band is seeking a soprano on occasion and I'm considering buying one. First, I have heard they are difficult to play. Will I be able to pick one up and play decently or will it be a lot of work? Second, I'm looking at a Yanagisawa 901, cheaper than most others and good reviews. Would this be a poor choice? Third, will these horns hold their value? If I find things don't work out, will I be able to get most of my money back?
Thank you!
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While it took me 2 months to sound good on my Selmer Super Action 80 series II soprano(it is fairly resistive),my daughter started a Conn 94m(blew real easy) at age 6 and did great. I would say soprano definetely requires more disipline to play;but it is definely a sax that can be learned if you put your mind to it. My daughter plays on a SC-991 now(curved Yani soprano) that blows real easy. I would say a 901 should be great to cut your soprano chops on. Not sure about resale value!!! Yanagisawa are known for their good sopranos(sopraninos too).
Samg: You posted in the sopranino thread. It probably will be moved to the soprano thread.

Few saxophones hold their value after being purchased new. Oh, an 80-year old Buescher TT costs more today than when it sold new, mainly because of inflation. Selmer MKVI's are outrageously priced these days. I'm sure most vintage saxophones now sell for more than they cost when new.

But if you buy a new saxophone today, expect to lose a considerable amount of money if you try to sell it in the next few years.

Soprano requires a player to downsize almost all aspects of playing a larger saxophone. Many do it easily, others struggle with it, especially the embouchure and precision required to play in tune.

Any of the major brands will most likely work for you. Yanagisawas are well made and many players love them, me included.

The inexpensive brands are a bit more dicey, but there are some brands out there that are better than others, mostly made in Taiwan . . . Antigua, Cannonball, P. Mauriat are three that I've played (own an Antigua). Read more in SOTW to learn more about the various brands. DAVE
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Yamaha 875EX Custom!!!!!!!!!! The BEST!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Get a Yanny they arnt as expensive as a Ex Soprano. And they play great. I like the Yanny Elimona and I think the 991 better the Yamahas.
4bubbas said:
Yamaha 875EX Custom!!!!!!!!!! The BEST!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Gotta love these endorsements from someone that has been playing saxophone for all of 5 months. ;)

If I agreed with you, I might be playing them. :shock: :twisted: :D
I think the only difficult part about soprano, is playing the thing in tune....I have to slightly change my emb. for different notes to bring them in tune.
IMO you can start off on soprano and get a decent sound and play somewehat in tune, but to really master the horn, I would say, takes a lot of practice. More so than switching bewteen any of the other 2 of the 4 most common saxophones.
Why not buy a used example? If things do not work out, or you do not like it, you will have the consolation that someone else took the brunt of the depreciation.
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