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Just picked up a mint SA 80 off of craigslist and I can't put the horn down. Been playing a Conn 10M with RTH for a while and have played many Yamaha's Mark VI's and others. The Selmer is solid, feels and sounds great! Just curious why these seem to get a luke warm reputation. Maybe it's because they have made over 300,000 of them? What a great playing horn.
 

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It is a solid horn and has tons of good points. I had a good tenor, 412613, but after I bought another MK VI I traded it for a baritone. My thoughts at the time were that it was a competent horn but was lacking something - funk, warmth, whatever. I even bought one of the Selmer USA Sterling silver necks for it but eventually went back to the original. If I had it today I probably would be playing the MK VI replacement neck on it that I'm now using on my Selmer USA tenor - that is a very good combination.
 

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I am glad to know a Tenor Series II is giving good reviews. Usually what I have seen around is that Altos take almost all the credit, when talking Series II's. I heard Boots Randolph played one of those Series II Tenors and may I say, I liked very much his tone.
 

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Billy Harper does, as well as some others.

I played two on two different occasions and liked them. The first time, I had been playing a Yamaha and then picked up the Serie II and jumped back, the sound was so much fuller.
My guess that they're not played so much is that some may feel that, with their fuller and more spread (for a Selmer) sound, they might not carry as well as their competition. Also, I don't know when the IIs came out, but perhaps it was also a matter of just what the competition with the IIs was from Selmer, itself, at the time.
 

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I think these are underrated, sleeper horns. The basic design on the Series II alto and tenor horns is very nice. Try some different necks on it; you'll be surprised how that can affect the sound, on a budget, too.
 

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I have seen this done with a lot of horns and yes, some sound very well with different necks. But for my Series II, Alto, the neck change did not work as well as its own original neck. I tried almost all you can imagine, just for the experiment.

I think these are underrated, sleeper horns. The basic design on the Series II alto and tenor horns is very nice. Try some different necks on it; you'll be surprised how that can affect the sound, on a budget, too.
 

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I am glad to know a Tenor Series II is giving good reviews. Usually what I have seen around is that Altos take almost all the credit, when talking Series II's. I heard Boots Randolph played one of those Series II Tenors and may I say, I liked very much his tone.
I think this is a SII, sounds good to me....

 

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Many years ago we did a comparison between a SA80II a Reference 54 and a MKVI we also swapped the necks when possible. The SA80II played with more core when the ref54 neck was used instead of the original one but using their own necks I remember we all liked the saxes in this order: SA80II, Ref54 and MKVI so I sold my SAII and bought a VI :). The SA80II was a very nice playing tenor and I played it for 18 years before selling. Also I compared it with many MKVI and I realized the MKVI sound was darker and fuller so... no way I sold it

Stan
 

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Here just a comparison about a Series II and a Mark VI tenor. Clips have been professionally recorded in the same conditions. Same mouthpiece, same reed same lig same player.

http://www.hsm-masterpieces.com/giudice.html

Enjoy

Stan
 

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Here just a comparison about a Series II and a Mark VI tenor. Clips have been professionally recorded in the same conditions. Same mouthpiece, same reed same lig same player.

http://www.hsm-masterpieces.com/giudice.html

Enjoy

Stan
Well played. Actually I like the Series II better here. Maybe it has a little more resistance on the II, that gives it more sound colors in the higher register in these clips? But in all, the difference is not night and day. I would have expected more difference.
 

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SA80II were always the "top of the line" horns when I was growing up. I always felt out of place pulling a YTS23 out and sitting in a section of SA80IIs for festivals/all state/that sort of thing.

I never had a chance to play one, as I caught the "vintage horn" bug as soon as I had any money and could even consider snagging a horn. Would still be interested in trying one out, though....
 

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Well played. Actually I like the Series II better here. Maybe it has a little more resistance on the II, that gives it more sound colors in the higher register in these clips? But in all, the difference is not night and day. I would have expected more difference.
You'd likely get a greater difference by judicious swapping of mouthpieces on either horn.
 

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Billy Harper does, as well as some others.

I played two on two different occasions and liked them. The first time, I had been playing a Yamaha and then picked up the Serie II and jumped back, the sound was so much fuller.
My guess that they're not played so much is that some may feel that, with their fuller and more spread (for a Selmer) sound, they might not carry as well as their competition. Also, I don't know when the IIs came out, but perhaps it was also a matter of just what the competition with the IIs was from Selmer, itself, at the time.
Gary, at the time the SA80II came out it was Selmers only tenor. I'm of the opinion, like many, that whilst the SA80II altos are great, the tenors are not so great. The Serie III's are a different story and, again like many, I think that the tenor is better than the alto. I had a Serie II tenor for many years, and then I made the mistake of trying some MKVI's. The rest, as they say, is history.
 

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You made the right choice, the VI has more depth & color.
On the other hand, I have had 4 VI's and like my Ref 36 the best of all. The only one I miss is the VI soprano I got in 1967.
 

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You made the right choice, the VI has more depth & color.
On the other hand, I have had 4 VI's and like my Ref 36 the best of all. The only one I miss is the VI soprano I got in 1967.
I've tried three 36's and owned a 54 for some time. The 54 is long gone and I wasn't impressed by the 36's. I have tried to find a modern tenor to use instead of my MKVI's, but so far I've failed, and for now I've given up!
 

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I love the SA 80 2 tenors! I now have a piece of saxophone history , a 1962 mkVI but the series 2 is on par with that. I played one for 13years straight before I got into Taiwanese horns and VI's. They are all good and I can gig with any of them. The clip earlier in this thread speaks for itself that the series 2 plays with a very rich sound .
 

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Not as rich and deep as a VI... at least this is my personal experience and the audio clips I've posted above show it clearly

Stan
 

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Well played. Actually I like the Series II better here. Maybe it has a little more resistance on the II, that gives it more sound colors in the higher register in these clips? But in all, the difference is not night and day. I would have expected more difference.
Do you? What can I say is that the man who played the clips, who is a profesional player, is now trying to switch to a VI ;)
I can ear a quite big difference between them, are you using professional speakers as well?

Stan
 

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I've played a SA 80 II tenor for almost 20 years until I bought my Mark VI tenor.
Now my son plays the SA 80 II.
The SA 80 II is a great horn, but I prefer the Mark VI.
 

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Do you? What can I say is that the man who played the clips, who is a profesional player, is now trying to switch to a VI ;)
I can ear a quite big difference between them, are you using professional speakers as well?

Stan
Mostly sounds like the VI is in better adjustment to me (listened on a pair of Sennheiser 280pro headphones).
 
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