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So cool to have found this thread. I'm new to SOTW and new to Selmers but just bought an SA 80 series I off of Ebay....very minty and got a very good price, I think. Ser# 355xxx. I suspect prior to me it was a one-owner horn that never got played much.

Quick history: Took up sax in grade 5, had an "El cheapo" Bundy alto (it did have a "Selmer" decal on the bell, made in Elkhart, IA) that I played thru High School. Then they switched me to tenor, a King school-owned horn (don't recall the model but I'm sure it wasn't a Zephyr or Super 20) that really rocked. Even though I played in both regular band and jazz band, I was at that age where playing guitar was cooler, so after High School I dropped playing sax.... for the next 40 years! Ouch!! I forgot how much I missed it. Got back into jazz and the sax (alto) a couple years ago and bought a '42 King Zephyr (way cool horn) and a 80's YAS-62 "Purple Logo". As nice a horn as that is, it is (as the common theory goes) a rather ""vanilla" sounding horn (great build quality though), and a "real" Selmer had still eluded me my whole life. No more!! So far I'm loving the SA80.

I did take it to a tech and he made a couple of quick tweaks, said it was a nice solid horn. (He said he had a Series II that he had to sell due to intonation issues). My impressions so far: Nice warm core, you can certainly go the Paul Desmond or Art Pepper route with the right mouthpiece, this is really where the Selmer spanks the YAS-62 and the King. Fairly free-blowing but just enough resistance, for me anyhow.You can get the clearer, more cutting tones if you want that too. Ergo's are comfy and nice with a couple of small quirks (low B-flat IS a pinky-stretch, which I was warned of prior....low C# a little close, high F is kind of a bitch) but none of this is a big deal, really. I guess you learn to play the horn you have and this one is going to be a pleasure. I hope this is one I have forever, it's really feeling and sounding nice to me. I hope I can do it justice, playing-wise.

Nice to be here, I'll go back and finish reading this thread now!
 

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Count me in as the newest owner of a great condition SA80, S/N 368xxx. I picked it up this past weekend at a local music shop for $2100 and dusted off my 80 C Star. After being away from playing for about 20yrs, this is the shot of adrenaline I needed. At first, I was concerned about the evenness of the notes through the register, since it seemed to have taken more breath support (especially the "A" note, which seemed muffled) than I remember from my playing Yamahas. A few hours later, I found the sweet spot and couldn't be more pleased.
 

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"King In The Castle" & Distinguished SOTW Member
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Congrats, Joe! I was a returnee myself and still remember the feeling I had when I first started playing again after a 10-year break.
 

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Hey there..... I do not own one, but would love to. I have a Series II, and may I ask, if somebody can illustrate me, what are the main differences between de SA80 Series I and II.

Best Regards,

JI
 

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Great avatar JI!

I've never played a Series II so take what I'm about to say (which I realize isn't much help) with a grain of salt....

I know the table keys were changed. Prior to buying my SA80, I was looking at a Super Balanced Action and when I mentioned I was also looking at a Series I the owner of the SBA kind of poo-poo'd them saying the table keys (low B-flat in particular) were too far away and "the series II was a better horn". Well.... he was trying to sell me his SBA, and I hardly think the series II is "better". The whole "better" thing with horns bothers me, it's so overblown (yuk yuk!). Getting back to the table keys, it was a minor adjustment for my pinky at first, but now I actually like the placement, the keys feel very "positive" and "non-mushy".

As far as sound, I've heard it said the Series I's are a little more "freer" sounding but still with a good resistance to blow against. I have no idea if this is true or not. I suspect there's probably more sound and tonal variation between two Series II of different years, for example, than between a given Series I and II. Who knows....I'm guessing. Let's let someone who's played them both chime in.....

EDIT: oh and the necks. There's supposed to be something about the Series I necks people aren't crazy about. I dunno....I like the neck and I like my horn, no issues whatsoever!
 

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"King In The Castle" & Distinguished SOTW Member
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I guess we're the SA80 series I newbies Joe. I love this horn....I'm on vacation this week and am having serious SA80 withdrawal!
Why didn't take the horn with you?
 

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Well... I thought about it. Last time up here I brought my Zephyr and never even played it.....you know, you go on vacation and you just want to veg out and get away from all your normal routines. This time I brought a Real Book, I was gonna do a little theory work but haven't touched that either. Probably for the best I came with no horn, I think my family needed a break :bluewink: ....but the Selmer is still so new to me so I can't wait to get home and blow!
 

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Thanks a lot!!!

Great avatar JI!

I've never played a Series II so take what I'm about to say (which I realize isn't much help) with a grain of salt....

I know the table keys were changed. Prior to buying my SA80, I was looking at a Super Balanced Action and when I mentioned I was also looking at a Series I the owner of the SBA kind of poo-poo'd them saying the table keys (low B-flat in particular) were too far away and "the series II was a better horn". Well.... he was trying to sell me his SBA, and I hardly think the series II is "better". The whole "better" thing with horns bothers me, it's so overblown (yuk yuk!). Getting back to the table keys, it was a minor adjustment for my pinky at first, but now I actually like the placement, the keys feel very "positive" and "non-mushy".

As far as sound, I've heard it said the Series I's are a little more "freer" sounding but still with a good resistance to blow against. I have no idea if this is true or not. I suspect there's probably more sound and tonal variation between two Series II of different years, for example, than between a given Series I and II. Who knows....I'm guessing. Let's let someone who's played them both chime in.....

EDIT: oh and the necks. There's supposed to be something about the Series I necks people aren't crazy about. I dunno....I like the neck and I like my horn, no issues whatsoever!
 

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Hi, I bought the same last fall, I'm a beginner (2 and a half years) I started with a Jupiter beginners tenor but later because financially I had the possibility to buy better I thought of the series 2 but a series 1 was available (from the 80's) at the right price for me (2000 euros, I'm in France) so I just bought it on photos. It has an extra key next to the octave key which actions a tiny pad on the the base of the neck. Not too sure what that's for, any ideas? (even my teacher doesn't know what it's for). Apparently it was an option for this model. There is no decorative engraving apart from Selmer Paris S80 SA lettering on the bell and of course a serial number. I love the deep grainy sound of the lower notes and it seems fairly even throughout the rest of the range. All in all I'm very pleased with it but don't really have enough experience to compare. All in all it is in very good condition with no dings just a few superficial scratches.

Soon it will go for pad repair and regulation, two pads are even torn but it still, surprisingly, sounds off correctly!

After that I bought a 2nd hand selmer C80* mouthpiece, the Berg Larsen metal one that was sold with the saxophone has a very large tip opening and I am definitely not ready for that yet.
 

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Hello, I realize you posted some years ago but I have a question for you. I bought a series "1" last year it was made in the 80's, and overall I'm very pleased with it . There's just one thing which remains a mystery to me there is an extra key next to the octave key which operates a small pad near the base of the neck, yes that's right, the neck! No one seems to know what it's for, not even my teacher. I tried it of course in several combinations but it just seems to make it more difficult to play. It appears to an option as I've never seen anything like it on other saxophones. Have you an idea? I would appreciate a reply. Anyhow I'm very pleased with it.

Thanks a lot, MB
 

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Hello, I realize you posted some years ago but I have a question for you. I bought a series "1" last year it was made in the 80's, and overall I'm very pleased with it . There's just one thing which remains a mystery to me there is an extra key next to the octave key which operates a small pad near the base of the neck, yes that's right, the neck! No one seems to know what it's for, not even my teacher. I tried it of course in several combinations but it just seems to make it more difficult to play. It appears to an option as I've never seen anything like it on other saxophones. Have you an idea? I would appreciate a reply. Anyhow I'm very pleased with it.

Thanks a lot, MB
do you have a photo?
 

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New member of the club.
I bought my series I alto serial #370XXX a few months back to replace my Yamaha 62II. After a complete overhaul, the only thing it bothered me was the palm keys a bit too low but after a hack (I made my own palm raisers with "Knead it") the issue was solved.
Still trying to adapt to the difference in blowing the horn, I found that in my head it sounds less bright than the Yamaha with more resistance but more in tune, although listening to recordings I sound the same.
I would be interested in trying a series 3 neck to see if changes the feeling of the tone but here in Oz they are hard to find (like anything else sax related).

Cheers,
 
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