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Discussion Starter #1
While "paging" through the 'net I came across a straight alto sax for sale. Looks the same as straight soprano, just bigger. I did a search here for comments but came up empty. So, anybody ever used one?
 

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I've played a Keilwerth straight alto. It's very weird. It sounds like a giant soprano to the player. Sounds like an alto to the listener.
 

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Yep,

There's usually one or so from China for sale on eBay. But for no-name Asian imports, they are always over-priced. And the quality-made straight altos from the major brands are far and few between.
 

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As mentioned, there are 3 choices: Vintage Buescher, Keilwerth, or an Asian copy (don't get this). The Bueschers will set you back big bucks. Do you have a photo of the one you are looking at?
 

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Grafton alto | Martin Comm III tenor
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While "paging" through the 'net I came across a straight alto sax for sale. Looks the same as straight soprano, just bigger. I did a search here for comments but came up empty. So, anybody ever used one?

I tried (and almost bought) a Rampone & Cazzani straight alto, this was a beautiful horn. I also tried out a Chinese one which was surprisingly good.

It's the kind of horn you really need to try out and decide if you can get on with the different way they sound to your ears, due to the bell being near your feet. I would like to have recorded the ones I tried, in order to find out what they really sound like, but the R & C felt really nice to me.
 

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I disagree on the generalisation of not getting an" Asian copy" because there are good ones namely the Chinese made, Wisemann (not cheap though)


which is a Keilwerth copy (plus some improvements of their own ).

Rampone & Cazzani makes an excellent one too, not a copy of anything, Not cheap either!

 

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The Chinese straight altos play very flat from low D on down. I think they designed the straight section that replaces the bottom bow a little too long. The Keilwerths are very good.

The Chinese straight TENORS have better intonation.
 

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Grafton alto | Martin Comm III tenor
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The Chinese straight altos play very flat from low D on down. I think they designed the straight section that replaces the bottom bow a little too long.
The one I tried was OK, maybe we are talking about different Chinese straight altos, or they improved it, or it's just that one.
 

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well, this is some generalisation, wouldn't you say? ALL Chinese alto's are flat, ALL Tenors are good?[rolleyes]
 

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I think they might have improved the alto. It wouldn't be difficult. I'm assuming there aren't multiple factories churning out straight altos and tenors.
 

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there are multiple factories doing straight altos, China is huge and there are many unrelated factories
 

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there are multiple factories doing straight altos, China is huge and there are many unrelated factories
Yeah. But all the straight Chinese altos seem very expensive compared to their standard alto line up. I wish there were choices in the $199 to $399 range like the curvy models.
 

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actually I have seen some relatively cheap (not as curved altos) ones at the Musikmesse, anyway Sax.co.uk had some demo special offer not so long ago, maybe they still have it
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I'm not looking to buy one - just curious. No doubt I've seen one at someplace or sometime, but I don't really recall. I saw one on Craigslist, then a couple on the bay. Wouldn't it be weird if there was a straight bari? Yikes!
 

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Ahem..........there are and there have been also in the past straight Tenors and straight Baritones.............

Jay Easton Straight Baritone and Straight Tenor, Buescher also Made these types saxophones
 

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...I've played one for years.

Mine is a Keilwerth- the one without the rolled tone holes . << It kicks more >>
It takes work to find the horns sound as it should be-the mouthpiece that really
gets the air column thru the straight alto right. This is NOT the same as an alto sonically.

If you check out...the re-issue George Braith has on Blue Note...you'll hear straight alto ( stritch)
played'. He was a leading exponent of it. Also....Gil Melle' in Los Angeles plays a Keilwerth
but never recorded on it afaik .

And- of course our man in sound ideas Joe Lovano: on "Trio Fascination. "
Those are L.A Sax he has its a unique sound .

My teacher the late Charlie Banacos described it as-
An unorganized sound organized !!!

Anyhow.....you gotta check one if you are after something like this.It's not REALLy an alto like that you would just
use per say as an alto on a gig. It's different for sure.

I also used it on rock-R &B hybrid bands and it really cuts well. I guess its the conception you play it with. On that note my friend Ian Kirkham with Simply Red uses one and loves it.

YMMV on this one but...it sure is interesting and HTH.
 

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while on SOTW the P.Mauriat dynamic banner showed their straight alto.


I wonder if anyone has any and could comment of why owning a straight alto (or tenor or baritone) is of any advantage other than attracting enormous attention from the audience that one is playing to.

The disadvantages are rather obvious ( awkward to carry around, difficult to find a stand, more complex to mike, projection of the lower notes towards the ground, longer and more prone to bending rods ) but what are, if any, the advantages, other than intangibles?

Are they worth the premium price?
 

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Grafton alto | Martin Comm III tenor
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I wonder if anyone has any and could comment of why owning a straight alto (or tenor or baritone) is of any advantage other than attracting enormous attention from the audience that one is playing to.
What other reasons could there possibly be?
 
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