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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just got a new-to-me 1960’s Vito tenor back from my tech last week. I love the sound I am getting on it. The sound is more focused and penetrating than the Keilwerth SX-90 Ive been on for the last 10 years. Sounds like a classic tenor sound. Very nice! This would make a great candidate for R&B type music. It has that punch to it. The JK had a more spread, darker and diffused sound- A real ballad horn!

I am finding the Vito tendencies a lot different from the Keilwerth’s. The top end on the Vito just pops out easily, it is not as freeblowing, and the intonation scale is less spread apart in that I can just keep my embouchure firm and taut and the intonation is right there. On the keilwerth I had to be more loose and the upper notes were a little harder to make. Because it is less free blowing (the vito) it seems that the tip opening of my regular tone edge link-like mpc at .102 opening feels small. On the Keilwerth it felt just right. I was playing 105's on the keilwerth before and had to go down in size because I felt like I was blowing into a large pipe. Now I'm thinking I may have to go back to 105 on the vito for it to feel right. Also, on the same mouthpiece played on the Vito I had to use a harder reed to get the right response. That same strength reed played on the Keilwerth with the same mouthpiece sounds deader, more mellow and not as vibrant.
Some of you players have more experience on playing different types of tenors than me- larger bore vs. smaller bore etc. Do you find what I am saying to be similar to your experience?
Now I am not sure if the bore on the Vito is smaller but I have noticed that the neck tenon receiver on the Vito is definitely a little wider than the JK’s. So it may make sense to assume that the bore on both are of similar size. The Vito just plays like a ‘smaller bore’ horn to me.

I've played on more altos than tenors and I find similar happenings with the alto too when I compared my JK alto with my newly acquired Mark VI alto.

This Keilwerth tenor I’ve been on for the last ten years is the only one I’ve really played on outside the bundy II that I used in high school so I am kind of all alone on an island when it comes to tenor experiences.

What are your thoughts?
 

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What Vito model are you talking about here? Vito stamped made in France (eg model 38T) or Vito assembled in Kenosha (LH bell keys) -- both anyway are bigger bore than Japs/recent Selmer/Buffet? From your sound description I suppose the latter. And your SX: what SN? I think they are similar bore (unless your Vito was made in Japan!).

Even if there is a small difference at the tenon you could try your JK neck on the Vito-Beaugnier (I've done this with several '90s JK necks --- copper, brass -- on my former 38T).
Another parameter in the loudness is the resonators... if they are substantially different on both horns (eg flat metal on your JK and domed plastic on the Vito) you can't really compare apples...
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
What Vito model are you talking about here? Vito stamped made in France (eg model 38T) or Vito assembled in Kenosha (LH bell keys) -- both anyway are bigger bore than Japs/recent Selmer/Buffet? From your sound description I suppose the latter. And your SX: what SN? I think they are similar bore (unless your Vito was made in Japan!).
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Hey Ahcheung,

I'm not sure what model the Vito is but the serial # is 101xx. Its a beaugnier made horn and says "made in france" at the bell joint.

The JK is a 113xxx serial# probably made near the year 2000. I have tried the JK neck on the Vito. It fits and it makes it more free blowing but the intonation and upper register is much better with the original neck.
 

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JK pundits could tell you about the bore; I seem to remember that they reduced the bell size after 100xxx (but maybe they kept the same tube bore). I am not surprised you find the JK sound to be brighter; bear in mind you're used to that horn and the Vito is a novelty for you... that is is less free blowing could be due to the set up, or simply to the original neck (as you seem to have discovered when you tried your JK on it). But I don't believe this is purely a bore issue (you could go ahead and measure the diameter of the tube in similar points of both horns to make sure.... wouldn't be surprised that the bow of the Beaugnier is actually bigger... the bell is huge for sure).
 

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I have a vito / japan model and have found it to be one of the best tenors i have played. My tech is also always so surprised at what a great playing horn it is.
 

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Speaking of Altos, I have a Vito Beaugnier Mod. 38, right side bell keys, like modern horns. When it comes to bore size I don't know exactly... I compared it to a N series Mark VII and a M130xxx Mark VI... and the Beaugnier is right there... it feels like a small bore horn, and sound goes towards that zone (more like a BA, may I say)...

Anyways, these are truly amazing horns... and for the price, usually less than 1k, FOR ME nothing comes close. Btw, I couldn't try other necks on it, since the tenon is wider, indeed.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks for the input so far!

I think it may just be a matter of getting used to the horn and the horn getting used to me. I gave it a good 2 hour workout last night and I am definitely getting the hang of it. The biggest thing for me is training myself not to blow so forceful into the mouthpiece and getting accustomed to the resistance. The JK required a fair amount of air to get the sound going. This vito just needs a whisper of air and she purrs! And the altissimo is just unbelievable on this horn.

It just needs some time to settle down after the overhaul like the pads settling into their circular depressions and it will take some time for me to become totally accustomed to it.

When I had got my first selmer alto (VI) back from the tech and blew into it for the first time, I thought I had got a crappy horn. But it was just a matter of me learning to blow differently-less air but still forceful. Now the horn has settled down nicely and you couldn't pry that baby from my hands!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
The resistance is now gone!
There was some crud build up in the neck octave pip that once I cleaned out it really freed up the horn. This particular horn has a pip configuration that extends up outside the neck body in the form of a little tube which is more susceptible to gunk build up than your regular pip configuration. I also fixed a very miniscule leak coming from the G# pad when activating the very lowest notes by screwing down the hold down cork which is affixed to the end of the screw itself (excuse my lack of correct terminology!). The horn is purring now correctly and I am loving it. Thanks for the advice and comments!
 

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I just picked up sax about a year ago and have been playing a MIJ Vito Alto. Love it for what it is. I just bought an older Vito tenor sax. It is serial # 15XXA. It is silver plated, I think. Anyway, all silver. It has "Vito" in a vertical oval on the bell and has "Vito" in script on the G# spatula(?), It doesn't say where it was made anywhere on the instrument that I can readily see. There is a little brace on the underneath side of the neck which has "Vito" on either side of it. The horn plays pretty well up and down, though I will be getting it serviced. I was wondering if anyone knows about any Vito saxes that were probably made in the 60's that would not have some marking as to where they were made. Someone told me that it may be American made with the "A" in the serial number. That it is probably a student model since it doesn't say Made in France or Japan.
Could anyone who has seen one of these or is familiar with Vito's share any knowledge/comments you have about this particular sax.
I would really appreciate it!
I passed on a YTS23 so I hope this was not a mistake.
 
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