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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I pulled my old horn out after several years of shameful neglect to start playing again. I remember that when it was bought for me in 1990 the WWBW folks said it was a model 162 "Selmer Omega". I presume it's an intermediate student model, but I can't find anything about it on the web. Does anyone have an idea on the relative quality of this horn? Is there any way to tell if that's really what it is? Thanks.
 

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Look at the model number at the back and bottom of the stack (just to the left and above the Eb key). It should say something like "YAS..." then some numbers, and a serial number. If it's at all related to the 62 model (YAS-62), then it's not a student model at all, but Yamaha's so-called Pro model, a step below the Custom, which until recently was the highest quality horn they produced.
 

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(Oh, and I'd still say custom's the highest quality. In fact I somewhat prefer the tonal qualities of the 62 to the custom. It seems to me that the models got a bit worse in terms of quality control with each new production run).
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I'm not where I can get my hands on the horn right now (it's in Mississippi and I'm in Kuwait), but I'll have my wife look for me. Yamaha? I thought all the Selmer USA horns were made by Buescher.
 

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If the Omega is anything like the AS100, and I agree with Riff that it preceded the AS100, it should be a solid good quality sax. I owned an AS100 for awhile and liked it very much. They still go for about $950 on eBay if in decent shape.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks, Riff. That's exactly the kind of thing I was looking for, but I must say I'm a bit surprised. If they're reputed to be such a good horn, why don't you hear much about them. Is it just because Selmer USA isn't one of the names that gets folks talking (like, say, Selmer Paris, Keilwerth, or Yani)? How would it rate quality-wise (or sound-wise if anyone has experience with it) against an SX90R or a new SA80? Or am I trying to compare a Ford to a Rolls Royce?
 

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very apt analogy. but we can all agree that a ford is a much better car than a yugo. so no worries right?
 

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They still sell Selmer Omega MG288's at the same time AS110's are being sold as the top-of-the-line Selmer USA alto. I think one could conclude that the Omega is one step back from AS110's. It's safe to say the Omega is an intermediate horn while the AS110 is being marketed as a pro model.
 

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Wow. Big ol' OOPS on my part!! heh, I saw the number "62" and apparently ignored the topic of your post, and just thought "Yamaha!" :oops:
 

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I have an Omega tenor that was made in the mid 1980's. I owned a YTS-52, which I just sold. Comparing the two, the Selmer had a much better feel and sound to it. I have been trying to get straight information on it myself, but many Paris-biased opinions seems to be getting in the way. I keep tossing it up in my head, do I save several thousand dollars more to purchase a Mark VI alto that might play well, or do I get a quality horn, like an AS-100 for much less? I have seen some good deals on the USA Selmers, so I still toss the question back and forth. Some comments that I have read places the AS-100, 110, and Model 162 as intermediate horns, but I beg to differ on that point. What I have seen in my tenor is that it IS a great horn. I have yet to hear a comparison between a Paris and USA horns that is unbiased and sticks to the facts. :?:

Sincerely,
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Hey, ChristianSax.

I'm far from being an expert, but you won't find unbiased opinions around here. Everybody has their two cents worth. After reading through several topics on this forum I can tell you that the best, and probably most appropriate, answer you're going to get is to try a MKVI head-to-head with an AS-100 or 110. Everybody plays differently and looks for a different sound and feel, so no one can really choose one horn over another for someone else. It seems completely reasonable that most serious players will go through several horns before settling on one that seems to suit their style and how they like it to feel in their hands. It all comes down to what you're looking for and only you can be the judge of that.

That said, though it's been a good while since we were first acquianted, I love my Omega. I have felt horns that feel "faster" (the keys seemed to respond more quickly and with less effort). No real quality horns that would impress anyone reading this post though. To me my horn feels solid, heavy, and well built which suits me as my sound is very dark and most of my playing is a classical style. I am curious about how it feels against horns made by Selmer Paris, Yani, Yamaha and Keilwerth, so I probably need to follow my own advice. I know...I'm no help at all, but I feel your pain. :?
 

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Thanks for the reply! I have played a MarkVI that was a really good horn and was well liked by a local professional. It is actually in a repair shop waiting to be sold. The repairman said that it was sent to him from a woman who purchased it nearly 40 years ago from the store he worked in. The problem is she wants $4000 dollars for the horn. Now I know that it is a good horn, but it will need a complete repad and adjustment to bring it up to speed. I have played a fair number of horns, but do not have access to a large store or dealer that has a great selection. So, I am left to gather as much information and make the best decision based on that. It is nice to hear from others who believe that Selmer Paris is not the only way to go with regards to great horns. I do know that many horns will be better than the old Jupiter 767 alto I currently play.

Though I am not a professional, I do play all the time in front of 1200 or so people at church. So I do need a quality horn that responds well and has good intonation, but does not require a mortgage. That is why I have been looking at the Selmer USA's. I was fortunate to be handed the Omega tenor and have really enjoyed it. So the research continues.

Sincerely,

Matt
 

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He's not asking about AS-100s or 110s, or the recent Selmer 'Omega' line of intermedite instruments. He's aking about Selmer USA's one attempt to make a pro sax, the model 162 'Omega', and later, the model 164 tenor. The sax was fine, but did not enjoy wide acceptance as a pro horn. Serial numbers on the model 162 alto and 164 tenor are six-digit, starting with 820xxx, as far as I have been able to determine. I have the alto I bought in '83, and it's 821xxx. This is a wonderful, free-blowing alto with a deep, resonant sound. The first model will have a round pearl for high F, a round pearl for the side F# and a plain brass bar for the high F#. Also, the RH pinky keys (D#,C) will be rounded like the Mk VI. The tenors are very good, too, and Boots Randolph has been playing one for about ten years. Original tone boosters on these are polished metal with no visible rivet. Architecture of the sax, particularly the first model, is basically Mk VI, although no parts are interchangeable, and the neck and bell are slightly different. There was a rumor that 'Mk VI tooling' was used for these, but that is completely false. The Mk VI tooling has never existed in the US, and never will. Selmer USA and H. Selmer, Paris are two different companies and have been for many years.
I'd say anyone with one of these first-model saxes, particularly the alto, would be well advised to keep and enjoy it. Selmer USA still sells the top line saxes as pro models, and they certainly are, although you won't find too many of them in pro use. The later versions (sometime after the '80s) have an oval pearl for the high F# key and RH pinky keys with the Mk VII/Super 80 extensions and shapes. These are still nice saxes but not as desireable as the Omega.
 

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Sorry, to clarify my tenor is a model 164 Omega. It has the round high F, and aux. F# key. It is an 82XXX series with an oval high F# key. It was purchased in 1985 as a store display sax, I know because I was there. I agree with 1saxman, it is a great sax, with a nice, rich tone to it. I really enjoy playing it, along with my "new" 1960 Buffet SDA alto. Now I need a better soprano. Take care.

Sincerely,

Matt
 

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tuppertn said:
I pulled my old horn out after several years of shameful neglect to start playing again. I remember that when it was bought for me in 1990 the WWBW folks said it was a model 162 "Selmer Omega". I presume it's an intermediate student model, but I can't find anything about it on the web. Does anyone have an idea on the relative quality of this horn? Is there any way to tell if that's really what it is? Thanks.
Will let you know once I 'get up to speed' on mine. I just bought one (a 1984 - serial #
821900) It has an oval pearl high F# key. I have no clue if that was an orderable
option or what. The guy on eBay set a reserve at 700. I was high bidder at $860,
but the 'extras' made it a real deal. It came with a perfect Meyer #5 mouthpiece
(one of which I already own - bought around 1970). It also came with an ARBEX
4*S mouthpiece (haven't tried it yet), and a couple of ligatures - not my favorites -
I prefer a reverse screw Bonade. It's hard case is almost perfect and the gig-bag he
sent with it IS PERFECT. Let's see, ... I paid $35 for shipping and handling.
I have a few minor skills with instrument repair, so I spent about 4 hours taking the whole
thing apart, cleaning all the metal with Liquid Wrench, re-oiled everthing and even
swabbed all the pads with aloe vera to keep them flexible and supple. I still couldn't
get everything perfect, so I took it into the SaxShop in Skokie, IL - Bobby Black's
place (I went to NU with him and he studied with Fred Hemke). For around $175,
one of his technicians got the rest of the 'kinks' out. It does have a couple of minor
dings near the bottow of the bell and on the bell edge and the laquer is about 90%.
I'm getting a nice 'fat' sound throughout all registers. Even the altissimo doesn't seem
to thin out much, either. My major instrument is clarinet, so I'll have to ask another
sax player how it sounds to him/her.
I also got a great deal on an old open hole (C foot) Selmer flute, but you HAVE to be
patient. Lot's of 'alligators' prowling around eBay. :wink:
 

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I have a Selmer USA with serial # 826887. I think we bought it in 1992. Is there a way to confirm that this is a 162 Omega? The only defining marks on the horm are teh serial number and the Selmer USA marking on the bell.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Based on my research, if high F# is a brass bar it confirms that it's a 162. If it has an oval high F# key with a pearl touch then it's most likely an AS100, although an exact cutoff number between the models is impossible to find and late 162's may have had an oval/pearl high F#. Mine turned out to be an AS100 and it's 827XXX.

162/AS100--doesn't matter as it's a phenomenal horn. These horns are extremely well made, feel fantastic and produce a rich, dark tone that any player would be happy have. I've dusted mine off after almost 17 years in the case and continues to surprise me even though it's never been professionally set up or adjusted (which I'm dying to to when I get a few extra bucks--just think how well it could play... :)).

kendall
 

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If you look through the previous posts in this thread, you'll read that the serial numbers of the "professional" Selmers Omegas were around 82000.
Yours is more than likely an Asian produced Selmer. Most of these horns are copies of Super Action 80 Selmers than a MarkVI just like the "pro" omegas from the 80's were.
 
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