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Discussion Starter #1
Hi all,

Any recommendations for dark (or dark-ish) HR tenor pieces?

My current set up is a D'addario Jazz Select with my SA80ii tenor. It plays great but it's a little on the bright side for me, I'll be holding on to it because it seems to work great for my pop/function gigs etc. but I'm searching for something with a darker, warmer core sound. My series ii plays brighter than my Buescher or Conn (no surprise there I guess?!) but it's my go-to horn these days so want something to reign it in a little.

I've got a V16 HR which was nice but again, a little bright and I wasn't a fan of the beak profile.

I recently played long shank soloist and loved the sound, but I couldn't get it in tune not matter how far onto the cork I pushed...not sure I can afford a vintage short shank! Considering Soloist copes (Aizen, Espresso), but what else should I be looking at?

Under $350 ideally!

Thanks!
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2013-
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Mouthpiece Suggestions to replace current Tenor mouthpiece:

Sound clips and comparisons: https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?t=81124
Bright sound: https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?t=956
For Jazz: https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?t=3047
Lead Tenor: https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?t=6328
For College: https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?t=5801
Big, dark , edgy: https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?t=9703
Classical: https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?t=7294
To Cut through: https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?t=7483
Great Metal pieces: https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?t=8907
Upgrade: https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?t=110774
Smooth Ballads: https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?t=12109
Big, round, good subtone: https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?t=10708
Big, Fat, wide sound: https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?t=11471
Darkest sounding: https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?t=15320
Edgy: https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?t=17523
Jody Jazz vs Phil Barone: https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?t=20887
Full Bottom, Easy Altissimo: https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?t=30819
Under .100 opening: https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?t=28577
Dark, Bright, Cutting, Warm and Funky: https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?t=30098
Versatility: https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?t=41233
Full Fat in the Palm Keys: https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?t=58633
All round Hard Rubber: https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?t=51474
Rock/Funk/Blues: https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?t=47826
Legit: https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?t=52062
Cutting and Great Altissimo: https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?t=50285
Great Metal Jazz: https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?t=63111
Controllable Power and Brightness: https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?t=64600
Like a Sugal: https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?t=44528
For Beginners: https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?t=73253
Fusion: https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?t=89190
Cheap Step-up jazz: https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?t=104178
Florida Links: https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?t=102222
Modern Sounding under $300: https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?t=108022
Caravan and Rascher: https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?t=101784

NOTE- Mouthpiece choice should not be influenced by horn shape, brand or colour, unless there are intonation problems (possibly due to a really modern mouthpiece on a really old horn).
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2015-
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I recently played long shank soloist and loved the sound, but I couldn't get it in tune not matter how far onto the cork I pushed...not sure I can afford a vintage short shank! Considering Soloist copes (Aizen, Espresso), but what else should I be looking at?
What stopped the mouthpiece from going any further? If it was bottoming out in the chamber, then a short shank would have the same issues. If it was just getting too tight, sand down the cork. A lot of corks are left in a cone shape, making it difficult to put the mouthpiece on far enough - the correct shape is closer to a cylinder.
 

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I have a beautiful vintage Riffault slant hard rubber tenor that is a soloist blank and Joe G from Soprano Planet refaced it to a .110 tip opening. If the tip opening is right, this would be a gem for you. Selling from Florida for $199 plus shipping.

Email me at: [email protected]
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks for all the responses.

What stopped the mouthpiece from going any further? If it was bottoming out in the chamber, then a short shank would have the same issues. If it was just getting too tight, sand down the cork. A lot of corks are left in a cone shape, making it difficult to put the mouthpiece on far enough - the correct shape is closer to a cylinder.
I think it was bottoming out in the chamber - which does sound surprising I know, I was playing on a softish reed and play with a more relaxed embouchure but still.... In the past I've always had the reverse problem, although that was typically playing medium/small chambered pieces on vintage horns. I believe this piece had been worked on, opened up at the very least, so perhaps that has something to do with it.

I did sand down the cork but to be honest by then I was already looking for something else, I don't like being right at the end or the back of the cork, I get worried I'll play a gig with an out of tune piano, or outside on an especially hot/cold day and have no wiggle room. I know everyone tends to complain of the opposite problem with short shank soloist, looking at photos of Joe Hen you can see he was showing a far amount of cork.
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2015-
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If your mouthpiece is bottoming out in the chamber, a shorter shank (assuming all else equal in the chamber) will give you nothing except more cork showing - the distance between the tip of the neck and the tip of the mouthpiece will not vary.
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2013-
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I like the Ronald Caravan and the old Woodwind Company mpcs for a dark sound.

Just back from that I like the Brilhart Personaline with the round chamber.
 

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I found the D’Addario Jazz Select and the Vandoran V16 to be good pieces and somewhat similar. However, both had a bit of harshness to them to them I didn’t care for. For pieces with a warmer tone but don’t get tubby, I can recommend the 10Mfan The Classic (a fantastic piece), a medium chamber modern Meyer, or a Macsax Bob Sheppard. The older black Bob Sheppard I have seems to play darker than the red marble Bob Sheppard I also have; I think the the red marble one is a “second series one” that has an altered design.
 

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Hi all,

Any recommendations for dark (or dark-ish) HR tenor pieces?

My current set up is a D'addario Jazz Select with my SA80ii tenor. It plays great but it's a little on the bright side for me, I'll be holding on to it because it seems to work great for my pop/function gigs etc. but I'm searching for something with a darker, warmer core sound. My series ii plays brighter than my Buescher or Conn (no surprise there I guess?!) but it's my go-to horn these days so want something to reign it in a little.

I've got a V16 HR which was nice but again, a little bright and I wasn't a fan of the beak profile.

I recently played long shank soloist and loved the sound, but I couldn't get it in tune not matter how far onto the cork I pushed...not sure I can afford a vintage short shank! Considering Soloist copes (Aizen, Espresso), but what else should I be looking at?

Under $350 ideally!

Thanks!
I'm with you on this one.... I tried several mouthpieces. I ended up loving the Rafael Navarro Maestra. Sadly, it's above your budget of $350. (I paid $475 for it.)

However.... I also loved (and kept as a backup) a Marmaduke piece. It was a "Marmaduke JAZZ Tenor Large Chamber." I bought it here: http://kyotobeauty.ocnk.biz/product/8 The owner of the company and creator of the mouthpiece seemed to hand-pick the best one he had on hand and adjusted it before shipping. He has other models too: http://kyotobeauty.ocnk.biz/product-list/2

By the way, the Marmaduke was shipped from Japan, but it arrived in a short period of time. I think I only waited a week for mine.

Good luck! I wish you the best in your mouthpiece hunt!
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Thanks for all the responses, they're all down on my list of pieces to research further and hopefully playtest
 

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If you like darker complex tone with buzz-on-tap, check out the Phil-Tone Intrepid. I’ve been playing one since they came out, sold my Lambersons, and have a second Intrepid on its way. Yeah, I dig ‘em - similar colors to a vintage Otto Link Resotone, but several hundreds dollars less, and with superb articulation and dynamic response.
 

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The Aaron Drake Reso Model is a great piece for a Darker sound.
And like all his pieces, it would be finished and faced nicely.
Like the Phil tone pieces.
 

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For the budget conscious, the hard rubber Tone Edge, Saxscape Fat Cat, and regular Vandoren java (that might be a little more medium dark) are ones I liked. I can't speak to the Phil Tone, I've seen an occasional used one and people rave about them.
 

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For the budget conscious, the hard rubber Tone Edge, Saxscape Fat Cat, and regular Vandoren java (that might be a little more medium dark) are ones I liked. I can't speak to the Phil Tone, I've seen an occasional used one and people rave about them.
Not sure what those cost but I've been using an Otto Link new Vintage for the last 10 years .http://tracking.deepsearch.adlucent...DbF4lukSK7LhMMI-Hkrr26xJ0mrGVikkaAk1oEALw_wcB
It gets a great Getzy sound. Don't get the regular HR Otto, it's garbage.
I've also been lately using a #9 Bamber Concert model which has a huge dark sound.
https://www.saxquest.com/product/vi...bber-tenor-mouthpiece-with-lig-and-cap-P10561

and the Vintage Jody Jazz is basically a Vintage Meyer copy ... super bright ..think early Sonny Rollins
 

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Syos has been getting a lot of buzz lately. Supposedly, you can choose your desired characteristics such as darkness and projection. Or you can choose from the setup of an existing player. I haven't tried it, but it might be something to check out. (I may buy one of these just for fun and out of curiosity.)

https://www.syos.co/en
 

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To Bobsax's comment, I've thought quite a good bit about those HR Otto Link new vintage pieces... I've recently started playing a Java T55 and I like it. It's a little less spread sounding than a Link but has similar qualities in that it can play dark and rich but if you push it a bit you get some edge too. I feel like in terms of sound profile, it's between a rubber Link and a Meyer.
 
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