Sax on the Web Forum banner
1 - 20 of 30 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
109 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I play sax but have always wanted to learn BASS clarinet, if you had to choose between the YAMAHA YCL221 and the SELMER 1430 LP, which would you choose and why? I am new to Bass clarinet and i know most would say a wood one, but they are EXPENSIVE and
i will never spend that much for something i want to dabble in. Thank you.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,913 Posts
I play sax but have always wanted to learn BASS clarinet, if you had to choose between the YAMAHA YCL221 and the SELMER 1430 LP, which would you choose and why? I am new to Bass clarinet and i know most would say a wood one, but they are EXPENSIVE and
i will never spend that much for something i want to dabble in. Thank you.
I'm not familiar with either of these but I used to use an old Selmer that was very good. If you can't get one consider a Hite, I played them also and they were good. Good luck! Phil Barone
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,454 Posts
For about the same price, the Ridenour bass clarinets have a good reputation. You can get a Low C one for less than $3K, Low Eb is around $2100.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
716 Posts
I recently played the new Yamaha 221 for a few weeks. I was very impressed! As a band director I have played a lot of basses in that price range and the new Yamaha is excellent. I haven't tried the Ridenour bass, but I just love my Ridenour Libertas soprano clarinet.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
109 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I recently played the new Yamaha 221 for a few weeks. I was very impressed! As a band director I have played a lot of basses in that price range and the new Yamaha is excellent. I haven't tried the Ridenour bass, but I just love my Ridenour Libertas soprano clarinet.
I have heard the same thing about those new 221 II, Great sound for the money, perhaps the reason why they are 200 more than the Selmer 1430LP. I do play on 2 Yamaha saxes, an ALTO 62 III AND MY TENOR is also a 62 III.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
602 Posts
For dabbling, I'd go for a used bass. There are a gazillion old Bundys/Selmer USA's/Vitos around at $400-500. Properly adjusted, they play very well. I used both Bundy and Vito professionally. If you have your heart set on something new, Yamahas are great except for the tendency to tune quite sharp. Bring a tuner when you "audition" one. Selmer's good, so is Jupiter. I haven't played a Ridenour bass, but I did buy one of their clarinets in C, great sound and tuning, but it took a lot of tech time to get the keywork sorted.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
109 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
You guys are the BEST, there is this one on EBAY and the guy is LOCAL to me.....i sent him an EMAIL and offered 1400, he said he is looking more for 1800 for it, the thing is there is one from SAN FRANCISCO in nicer condition and is listed at 1500 or best offer. Here is the local one, he is literally 6 Miles from me.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Bass-Clari...b-Low-Eb-Used-New-Condition-Wood/362438238372

He states NEW condition, but you can clearly see it is NOT, as the keys themselves have worn the Nickel down, i do like that it is wood, although wood can be a pain with weather, i DON'T plan to play out doors, heck i dont even know how to play Clarinet...LOLOLOL.

Thoughts? Thank you.
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member
Joined
·
3,235 Posts
I played one of those Noblets in high school until I got my plastic Bundy. I found it to be a decent sounding instrument, but it was hard to tune because doesn't have a tuning slide anywhere. You can pull the neck cork out a bit if you need to, but then the neck wobbles, gets unstable and probably leaks a little.

There are a bunch of plastic Bundy horns available for well under a thousand USD and I don't think there's an option that's really better for the money.

I played one of those for about 15 years until I could afford a really good (used) Selmer Paris Low C instrument. It's a great horn for building fundamentals and Bundy/Selmer USA have made basically the same instrument for...40 years now? The newer ones have some differences, but mechanically look similar (based on photos), so pretty much every instrument repair shop will know how to make them work. Plus, they were made to be handled by little kids, have no bridge key mechanism to get out of adjustment (the most finicky part of my Selmer), and have a great, punchy sound from the low Eb up into...however high in the altissimo you know how to voice.

I haven't played a Yamaha bass since high school (15 years at this point), but I remember it being decent, but very sharp. I've read other reports of their sharpness, but can't really confirm. I bet they are high quality and well made, though, since that's what Yamaha does.

But yeah, I'd say pick up a Bundy/Selmer (same thing) one-piece plastic Low Eb horn, get it tuned up and then don't worry about another bass clarinet until it's time for a Selmer/Buffet or equivalent level professional horn. If you learn to voice properly, you can get away with the single register vent for most of what you need to do on the bass clarinet, including playing in the clarion and up into the stratosphere.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
109 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I played one of those Noblets in high school until I got my plastic Bundy. I found it to be a decent sounding instrument, but it was hard to tune because doesn't have a tuning slide anywhere. You can pull the neck cork out a bit if you need to, but then the neck wobbles, gets unstable and probably leaks a little.

There are a bunch of plastic Bundy horns available for well under a thousand USD and I don't think there's an option that's really better for the money.

I played one of those for about 15 years until I could afford a really good (used) Selmer Paris Low C instrument. It's a great horn for building fundamentals and Bundy/Selmer USA have made basically the same instrument for...40 years now? The newer ones have some differences, but mechanically look similar (based on photos), so pretty much every instrument repair shop will know how to make them work. Plus, they were made to be handled by little kids, have no bridge key mechanism to get out of adjustment (the most finicky part of my Selmer), and have a great, punchy sound from the low Eb up into...however high in the altissimo you know how to voice.

I haven't played a Yamaha bass since high school (15 years at this point), but I remember it being decent, but very sharp. I've read other reports of their sharpness, but can't really confirm. I bet they are high quality and well made, though, since that's what Yamaha does.

But yeah, I'd say pick up a Bundy/Selmer (same thing) one-piece plastic Low Eb horn, get it tuned up and then don't worry about another bass clarinet until it's time for a Selmer/Buffet or equivalent level professional horn. If you learn to voice properly, you can get away with the single register vent for most of what you need to do on the bass clarinet, including playing in the clarion and up into the stratosphere.
WOW, AWESOME information here, YES i have heard that the YAMAHA'S are sharp as well....Thanks again for all this info. I will keep looking then and see what i find.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
602 Posts
Noblets are good instruments. Clark Fobes, who knows more about basses than anybody I've met, told me that short of a professional bass, Noblet is next best. But they haven't been manufactured in at least 40 years. I second dirty's comment that there isn't much tuning adjustment possible, and some basses/players need a lot. The ebay seller is dreaming to think that horn is worth $1800. Maybe half that. Get a $500 horn, let a tech put it in its best condition, get a good inexpensive mouthpiece(Fobes Debut, Garrett, etc.), and get to it!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
109 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Noblets are good instruments. Clark Fobes, who knows more about basses than anybody I've met, told me that short of a professional bass, Noblet is next best. But they haven't been manufactured in at least 40 years. I second dirty's comment that there isn't much tuning adjustment possible, and some basses/players need a lot. The ebay seller is dreaming to think that horn is worth $1800. Maybe half that. Get a $500 horn, let a tech put it in its best condition, get a good inexpensive mouthpiece(Fobes Debut, Garrett, etc.), and get to it!
My thoughts EXACTLY about the price, thank you all. I may have found a used Selmer 1430LP local at a very reasonable price, will go check it out. I did order a VANDOREN BD5 Black Diamond MP and a ligature to have for whatever horn i find. I am a firm believer that a GOOD MP is a must, even a halfway decent horn will sound GREAT with a GOOD MP.
 

·
Forum Contributor 2010 & Distinguished SOTW Member
Joined
·
2,945 Posts
I have a Yamaha 221 II. I bought it as a backup to my Buffet Prestige. It's a really nice instrument. It does play sharp. I can manage it by pulling the neck out, and the center joint out (the Yamaha has a two piece body). The 3rd line B is really sharp, but I glued a cork crescent in the B tone hole and it is workable now. These seem to sell for in the neighborhood of 1200-1400 used here and on that auction site.

I have never been a fan of the Noblet/Leblanc basses. That neck tenon/body receiver lends itself to leaks and limited pitch adjustment options.

The Selmer 1430LP is a great option. Michael Lowenstern does a favorable review of one on his Earspasm channel on YouTube.


Regardless of which way you go, a good/great mouthpiece makes the journey so much easier. Vandoren B45,B44,B40 are all good options to start with. As you get some chops, maybe the Vandoren B50, or if you have the $$, a Fobes San Franciso.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
109 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I have a Yamaha 221 II. I bought it as a backup to my Buffet Prestige. It's a really nice instrument. It does play sharp. I can manage it by pulling the neck out, and the center joint out (the Yamaha has a two piece body). The 3rd line B is really sharp, but I glued a cork crescent in the B tone hole and it is workable now. These seem to sell for in the neighborhood of 1200-1400 used here and on that auction site.

I have never been a fan of the Noblet/Leblanc basses. That neck tenon/body receiver lends itself to leaks and limited pitch adjustment options.

The Selmer 1430LP is a great option. Michael Lowenstern does a favorable review of one on his Earspasm channel on YouTube.


Regardless of which way you go, a good/great mouthpiece makes the journey so much easier. Vandoren B45,B44,B40 are all good options to start with. As you get some chops, maybe the Vandoren B50, or if you have the $$, a Fobes San Franciso.
Thanks i have watched that video like 20 times, lololololoo. I love his channel and he is a KILLER player. i got the 1430LP now waiting for the MP to arrive, you guys are the best, thank you ALL for your wonderful advice...qwerty next thing for me is a BARI SAX....LOL. Sax is my main thing...own 2 tenors, and an ALTO.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
109 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
qwerty, What opening would you recommend on that FOBES San Francisco? I was just on their website, NOT ordering one yet, but perhaps down the line...Thanks in Advance.
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2014
Joined
·
1,358 Posts
Also, be prepared to try a bunch of different reed types and strengths. I tried Ricos, LaVoz and Legere before settling on Fibracell. You might need a stiffer reed than you think. I started on 2 and 2.5 (what I play on sax), but quickly found that I need a 3 or 3.5 to voice the notes properly.

Re: the Fobes. I believe Clark recommends the CF facing (1.70 mm) for most players, especially beginners & intermediates. I ended up buying the mid-price Nova, and am very happy with it. Have a Yamaha 4C and a Garrett piece, but didn't like either of them.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
602 Posts
I play a Fobes San Francisco CF, and it's a great mouthpiece. I had a San Fran in a 1.90 facing (AR?), but when I bought my 1971 Selmer low C bass, it didn't respond well in the upper register with it, so Clark recommended a CF. I think that's the tip opening he uses for the Debut and Nova mouthpieces as well.
 

·
Forum Contributor 2010 & Distinguished SOTW Member
Joined
·
2,945 Posts
I'd recommend the CF (1.70) facing. It is the most closed tip openings of his offerings. For a bass clarinet newbie, a mild tip opening is probably best. I play an HB (2.00) in the San Francisco and an RR (1.80) in his 10K model. The HB is his most open and is a handful, and I am a fairly experienced bass clarinet player. The 10K RR is a bit more tame and a little more refined sounding.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
109 Posts
Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Thanks guys for all the advice...I play on Legere' Signature Series Reeds on all my sax horns, can i use my TENOR reeds on the Bass Clarinet MP? Thanks again.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
109 Posts
Discussion Starter · #20 ·
The Legere tenor reeds worked well on a Yamaha bass clarinet for me.
Ok good to know as this is what i use on Tenor sax, the Signature series and love em. I am returning the VANDOREN BD5 MP and will order the Fobes San Fran in the CF opening. Thank you all again, this information is EXTREMELY appreciated.
 
1 - 20 of 30 Posts
Top