So I did, Benny. I bought a Gemeinhardt 2S and I love it. But that doesn't stop me thinking about getting a Muramatsu or a Sankyo in the future when I get my hands on the dinero. I was sorry I wasn't able to get your 2SS. I suspect it might be even better than the 2S I have. Nevertheless, I love this Gemeinhardt and can't understand the bad rap they often get. I measured from the cork to the foot and it corresponds exactly to the measurements given by Boehm in his book " Flutes and Flute Playing" for a C flute pitched at A=435. The scale is fine, it plays in tune. I guess playing with other instruments pitched higher would be a problem but that doesn't apply in my case. The original headjoint that came with it is awful but I already had a Gemeinhardt H1 head that works great. I'm beginning to think that Gemeinhardt put more effort into their silver flutes than they did with their silver-plated models.
I have not played a Sankyo, but I can pass this on. The 1st chair flute with the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra played one for years and had one of the most beautiful sounds I have ever heard. It was a silver flute.
Ian Anderson from the group Jethro Tull plays a Powell 3100 for recordings which is the same flute that I have. Great flute but it is a little fragile. Ian also has a Sankyo which he says blows easier and uses on tour. He also has the cheapest Yamaha which he refers to as his "kitchen flute" which he keeps out so as he passes by he can just pick it up and play a little to keep in constant shape. It can take a beatin' and keep on tickin'.
Sankyo has a great reputation. Regardless of the flute, make sure it receives a "clean, oil, and adjustment" once a year. After that, practice, practice, and practice.
My Sankyo was awesome before it got stolen out of my car. I play an intermediate Yamaha now because I couldn't justify buying an expensive flute for the amount of flute work I do. The Sankyo I got dirt cheap at a garage sale... 50$. It was the deal of my life.
I think they are more "Straight-Ahead" than Muramatsu. I feel like some Mura's are a little bright or have their own "thing", a modern flute sound, where as Sankyo's are a bit more versatile.
Less of a "built-in" sound, I think I mean & more of an all-around great playing flute, where the player can do the rest.
They make alot of different headjoints, but they also match up well with headjoints from other makers. I know people using a Sankyo with a Powell head, or Haynes or Brannen & they sound great. I even know someone who uses one with an old Louis Lot headjoint (with modern lip plate) which sounds fantastic.
Look for one from the 80's or even 70's. The new ones I see look alittle different to me, but I havent checked them out, they may be still good.
I have almost always played Sankyo flutes exclusively, and if you've never tried one, you really should. They are fantastic, from the least expensive model to the 24K gold one. I played a 14K for years, and still have an all-silver 401 as a backup to my new platinum-plated Altus.
It's hard to characterize the sound of a Sankyo, since they make many different headjoint cuts, and everyone has their own sound. I tend to find them sweet but "meaty", with EXCELLENT craftsmanship and very comfortable ergonomics.
Sankyos are cool, but I like the Muramatsu and the Miyazawa better over all. I play tested the Sankyos the same day I bought my Miyazawa. I my only gripe with it was I thought the key action was a little more course compared to the Miyazawa, although the headjoint played similar.
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