Sax on the Web Forum banner
1 - 20 of 21 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi,

I have a tenor sax. I noticed recently playing a unpressed C# note it sounds awfully flat. I tried changing mouthpieces but it doesn't work. I think one of the keys is blocked.

Any ideas?

Thanks,

Steven
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
C# is a notoriously bad note on pretty much all saxophones. Not only is it flat, but it's right on the break. Definitely try using lots of different fingerings to alter the pitch and the tone color. I personally think the best way to play a c# is to use a sharp fingering and voice it down to play it in tune.

A good fingering to use on c# on most horns would be octave key, 3, and the bottom side key.
 

·
Distinguished SOTW member, musician, technician &
Joined
·
5,064 Posts
For some reason it's relatively common for the spring of the small C key (top key of upper stack) to slip out of its cradle somehow and cause this problem. I would check this first, especially if the note is very flat. Less likely but possible theat spring broke. Could be other things too.
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member/Technician
Joined
·
4,717 Posts
Concur with both above, c has more than likely become unsprung, or the mech is very sluggish, that would be my first point of call.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
1,812 Posts
Definitely try using lots of different fingerings to alter the pitch and the tone color. uld be octave key, 3, and the bottom side key.
Interesting point that fingerings alter the tone color. I sometimes play the a note consecutively with the same note using a different fingering. I try to match the pitch exactly but that is difficult. I think of it as a microtonal music.

I have been learning the cello for the past several months and find it particularly difficult to land exactly on pitch which is frustrating. I can hear I am off when compared to the open strings.
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member/Technician
Joined
·
4,717 Posts
Do you think, the pitch variation on the cello is from inconsistent finger placements, when fingering the notes

Do you pluck or bow
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
5,336 Posts
On most saxes it helps to add the middle side key to bring the pitch of C#2 up a bit. Another solution is to finger low C# and add the octave key either with or without raising the first finger of the left hand depending on the sax. This gives a C# that is closer in tonal color to the D which is its neighbor.

Thanks RaySax14 for this fingering: octave key, 3, and the bottom side key I learned something new today. :)
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
5,336 Posts
Where have you seen a cello with frets Steve? I have taught music in public schools for over 30 years and worked in a music store that sold and repaired stringed instruments for over 10 years and have never heard of a fretted cello---let alone seen one. This is interesting.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
2,042 Posts
Adding frets arguably changes the instrument to "something else" (viola variant?) but it has been done. Hardly a mainstream practice. It appears to be pretty common on "electric cellos" which are right up there with WX- 5's et al as real woodwind instruments.

Beginners, as I'm sure you know, frequently add tape strips as "visual frets" to aid in finger placement.

Google provides some pix if you're interested.
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member/Technician
Joined
·
4,717 Posts
Where have you seen a cello with frets Steve? I have taught music in public schools for over 30 years and worked in a music store that sold and repaired stringed instruments for over 10 years and have never heard of a fretted cello---let alone seen one. This is interesting.
Its actually becoming more popular as time goes on, people sort of started with gut string frets, then have progressed to real frets. This is especially popular for those that have the same issues that differencetone talks off. Ive even fretted violins and violas myself. The important consideration IMO is too use low profile frets when modifying these units, so you can slide "in a sense"... we even have the reverse happening with guitars, manufacturers sell fretless guitars bass's etc..
 
1 - 20 of 21 Posts
Top