Sax on the Web Forum banner

1 - 14 of 14 Posts

·
Distinguished Member, Forum Contributor 2012-2015
Joined
·
5,878 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Where I live I'm not able to compare the two. My Ref 54 tenor has a fair amount of resistance. I'm getting used to it, coming from a Paul Mauriat 66RUL, which is very free-blowing. Doing a lot of long tones and trying reeds in a slightly lower strength is also helping.
I've read a lot about the difference between the 54 and the 36 in terms of sound, but is there also a difference in terms of resistance or is it basically the same?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,056 Posts
It's not the horns, it's the neck. Try a Series III neck or have Randy Jones tweak it. My Series III and VI are much freeer blowing than the 36/54 I've had. The darkness of the Ref horns are more neck related than bore IMO. Remember also that resistance isn't always a bad thing, I think some of the Selmer resistance helps out with control and a more locked in scale for me. I've had real free blowing Super 20's and a Keilwerth SX90 in nickel silver that I couldn't play in tune.
 

·
Distinguished Member, Forum Contributor 2012-2015
Joined
·
5,878 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
Remember also that resistance isn't always a bad thing, I think some of the Selmer resistance helps out with control and a more locked in scale for me.
That is true. I'm not complaining about the resistance, I'm just curious if maybe a little less would be enough. So the question remains: is the 36 (or its neck, as you put it) less resistant? Your post seems to imply that it's not.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,056 Posts
I think in general the 36 and 54 necks are both resistant, but within necks of the same type you may find one that has a wider opening (i.e. .502 rather than .495). I had a mint late model VI (220k) that was really stuffy and resistant and found that by changing necks the horn came alive.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
777 Posts
I don't find the 54's or 36's resistant at all provided they are set up well. In fact, I've owned 2 III's, 2 36's and an incredible 54 right now that you can literally whisper into and out comes this big full rich sound, both with the standard neck and the sterling silver 54 neck. Could necks have a bearing? Sure. Could mouthpiece set-up have a bearing? Yes. My recommendation would be to try a good set-up first with a competent tech.
 

·
(formerly borganiboy)
Joined
·
5,566 Posts
I nearly got a Ref 36.Blew the 54 and 36 side by side and thought the 54 to be very tubby,stuffy and dead.The 36 blew much more free,it sounded great.Realy liked the 36.Of the modern Selmers i owend,2 serie II's and a silverplated serie III the III blew the best.Blew about 5 serie III tenors in a shop also and there was a black lacquer III that was amazing.For me the serie III is there best tenor model.The 36 a close 2nd.
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member
Joined
·
2,870 Posts
I nearly got a Ref 36.Blew the 54 and 36 side by side and thought the 54 to be very tubby,stuffy and dead.The 36 blew much more free,it sounded great.Realy liked the 36.Of the modern Selmers i owend,2 serie II's and a silverplated serie III the III blew the best.Blew about 5 serie III tenors in a shop also and there was a black lacquer III that was amazing.For me the serie III is there best tenor model.The 36 a close 2nd.
I don't want to sound like an a--hole but just because a ref 54 doesn't play super easy doesn't mean it sounds dead. I think that if your used to a freeblowing horn that don't have enough breath support or something to make it sound good.
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member/Forum Contributor 2009
Joined
·
4,507 Posts
generally speaking, yes, the 36 would be more free blowing. It still retains some resistence enough for you to "shape" your sound wich is nice. Necks are also very relatd to resistence, as someone points out the larger opening ones are more free blowing. The 36 has a livelier bottom end wich I like better, the 54 "sings" a little more on the palm and altissimo region.
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member
Joined
·
2,309 Posts
I have played a bunch side by side and they felt pretty similar to me.
My experience also. Back when i was in the process of choosing I played both the 54 and 36 at different locations in the US then finally in Paris. All that I played both blew very easily to me. I went with the 36 because of the colour of it's sound quality.

Different mouthpiece bores and baffles will play a small role as will a previous (brand) horn you are or were playing on, plus what is resistant to one might not be to another individual.

"Where I live I'm not able to compare the two." Wrong way to go about it...you have got to play test to know if you personally like either, just take a trip and go do it!
 

·
(formerly borganiboy)
Joined
·
5,566 Posts
I don't want to sound like an a--hole but just because a ref 54 doesn't play super easy doesn't mean it sounds dead. I think that if your used to a freeblowing horn that don't have enough breath support or something to make it sound good.
,

Well thats your opinion and i gave my opinion and i still think it sounded dead,stuffy,hard work.As for free blowing horns thats the type i like and the Ref 36 was more close to what i like and the Serie III was the best of the 3 for me,thats all that matters in the end.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
486 Posts
I have owned both the '36 and the '54. I have my own opinion on the horns but I'm going to keep that to myself. I've seen these free/resistant conversations and I simply cannot argue with anybodys experiences but I wanna offer some food for thought. I bought a '36 and sent it to my repair tech to have the horn set up. Because he takes the horns all the way apart, He found out that the bell of the horn was not sealed to the body. You couldn't tell looking at it, but somebody skipped a step when they assembled that horn. That horn was very resistant when I first got it, after the set up, it just sang. Even things like a simple leak or minor adjustment change how free/resistant a horn plays. I'm not going to get into key height, mpc, reeds etc. My point is, all horns, even the new 6k selmers are not created equal. You cannot make a sweeping generalizations about horns unless you A/B horns set up by the same guy. Food for thought,

Datsaxguy
 

·
Distinguished Member, Forum Contributor 2012-2015
Joined
·
5,878 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
I have owned both the '36 and the '54. I have my own opinion on the horns but I'm going to keep that to myself. I've seen these free/resistant conversations and I simply cannot argue with anybodys experiences but I wanna offer some food for thought. I bought a '36 and sent it to my repair tech to have the horn set up. Because he takes the horns all the way apart, He found out that the bell of the horn was not sealed to the body. You couldn't tell looking at it, but somebody skipped a step when they assembled that horn. That horn was very resistant when I first got it, after the set up, it just sang. Even things like a simple leak or minor adjustment change how free/resistant a horn plays. I'm not going to get into key height, mpc, reeds etc. My point is, all horns, even the new 6k selmers are not created equal. You cannot make a sweeping generalizations about horns unless you A/B horns set up by the same guy. Food for thought,

Datsaxguy
Interesting and thoughtful post, thank you. I took my Ref 54 to the best technician in my country this week and he found a few things that make the sax more resistant than it should be. He said something about the sealing of the bell that was not done correctly. I'm getting it back in 2 weeks and I'll report on the difference here.
 
1 - 14 of 14 Posts
Top