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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey there ..

People now and then ask me if I know Tenor Saxophones from
a certain brand that are appropriate and easy to play for
people with small hands / short fingers .. any experiences,
tipps etc.!?

Would really appreciate, if you´d share knowledge !
Thanks !!
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
For sure it´s basically about certain Models that you can think of, remember etc.
Or maybe you yourself have had the same difficulty to find the right tenor horn for yourself ..
My experience is, that with 'The Martin' Tenors for example the keys are very hard to reach in general.

Especially ladies often have the problem to find the right horn for them ..
 

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Right. The Yamahas (add YTS 82Z to those above).
Also Yanagisawas, Selmer Serie III.
 

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Most ladies I know --who play saxophone of course!--find the Yamaha table as good as it gets. Vintage wise the good old Conn 6M is pretty neat for smallish hands.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
ok, thanks ! I must say also most ladies that I know play 6M altos .. I didn´t know ´bout the tenor!
 

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I have a Beaugnier-made Noblet standard tenor from the 1960s that works really well with my little digits. I'm 5'2" and a woman. I tried out a 1960 Martin Indiana that had a great tone, but my hands just weren't wide enough. Any tenor with high palm keys would be a strain, I think. On the Martin, I kept accidentally hitting the palm keys when playing LH 1-2-3, and I would also hit the side keys when playing RH keys. I just didn't have enough reach.
 

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ok, thanks ! I must say also most ladies that I know play 6M altos .. I didn´t know ´bout the tenor!
Tenors are 10M, and they take huge hands to play!
 

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Amati also has a nice keyboard layout for small hands, as does Bundy Special and Couf (oddly enough both Keilwerth stencils).
 

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The ladies that I know play Selmer Mk VI altos, Selmer Mk VI tenors, and Selmer Mk VI or Yanagisawa baris.
 

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I have small hands, and for me it was a revelation to play a YTS-62 after some of the older tenors I had been playing. It was particularly helpful to me that the right hand keys were closer together, which necessitated less stretching and allowed me to play with less tension in that hand. Little differences like that can mean a lot.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I have a Beaugnier-made Noblet standard tenor from the 1960s that works really well with my little digits. I'm 5'2" and a woman. I tried out a 1960 Martin Indiana that had a great tone, but my hands just weren't wide enough. Any tenor with high palm keys would be a strain, I think. On the Martin, I kept accidentally hitting the palm keys when playing LH 1-2-3, and I would also hit the side keys when playing RH keys. I just didn't have enough reach.
Thanks to Saxaatu !
Are there more ladies out there that wanna share experiences with the quest for their perfect tenor ?
 

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In my own experience I've found vintage horns to be hard to play with small hands, even some that were hard to play with my huge hands. Small hands are best off buying modern. I personally LOVE the ergos on the new yamahas and cannonballs, both are superb.
 

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In my own experience I've found vintage horns to be hard to play with small hands, even some that were hard to play with my huge hands. Small hands are best off buying modern. I personally LOVE the ergos on the new yamahas and cannonballs, both are superb.
Buescher TH&C is one exception, as are pre-Voll-True Kings. Very close together fingerings and smooth ergos (especially for the time and being unbalanced actions with in line toneholes).
 

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I played a Theo Wanne Mantra tenor at the Sax Symposium a few years back and that one had the smallest keyboard that I've ever had my hands on. Nearly broke my right pinky "reaching" for the low C key! That with it being curved a bit more back for the finger, it was much closer than the Martin, Zeypher, King, Selmer, and Kessler horns. Practically no "reach" required for that Eb key! The left pinky keyboard was also quite close but not nearly as much of a shock as the right hand table. Up and down the horn, all the keys felt very close and responsive. Horn had a nice sound as well! Nice horn and if small hands are that much of a consideration, well worth investigating.
 

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Yani would be ok, but Yamaha would be the best for small hands. I had to have the G key adjusted further out on my Yani tenor, but the Yams I tried out were too small for my big hands. It seems like for the most part someone w/big hands can play smallish keywork, but not the other way around. If you have small hands you're more limited. Good luck.
 

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Another modern sax with a tiny keyboard (I found it awkwardly small on the pinky keys) was a Trevor James.
 
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