Sax on the Web Forum banner

1 - 11 of 11 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
124 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Does anyone have actual knowledge of what the Vandoren Circle S series mouthpieces were about? I have heard "rumors" that it was a "soul" mouthpiece, but someone else said that was not what it was. Who remembers? What are they about?

- anchorsax
 

·
Moderator
Grafton alto | Martin Comm III tenor
Joined
·
29,583 Posts
There was a Vandoren prototype which I believe was called the S2 or SL2 (???). I had one of these and subsequently they made me another one with a wider tip. The last I heard they never went into production, but I did use one for a while. It is currently on loan to a friend and I'm hoping to get it back soon.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
124 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks, Pete. However these mouthpieces were in production. The series marking had a circle with the letter S within it.
I have seen them for tenor and baritone.
- anchorsax
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
962 Posts
I have 2 of them virtually new in box (tenor 5 and 6). They are typical Vandoren quality, long table, low rollover pieces, medium chamber - sound is nothing special - more open might be another story, however.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,017 Posts
I tried one but forget for what horn. My memory is that its chamber was a bit on the small side and it didn't play as full as most rollover baffle HR pieces.....so I sent it back. I could only guess that S meant small chamber.
 

·
Mouthpiece Refacer Extraordinaire and Forum Contri
Joined
·
3,407 Posts
They are the Vandoren "Soul Jazz" model. Long body with medium/small chamber, straight sidewalls - focused sound like a Java - some more harsh like a Jumbo Java. The baffle design is a rollover style baffle - not a step baffle like the Jumbo Java. Of the several I've owned and worked on, the finishing workmanship is not as good as Vandoren today, so they can tend to play a bit crass in their original state.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
128 Posts
I hate to revive an old thread, but I just got two of these, a 7 and an 8 from a seller on EBay from whom I also bought a bunch of rather nice Charles Bay mouthpieces, claimed to be from his estate. The Vandorens were stated as being for tenor and I bought them as such. Overall length of each is 4-3/4". Funny thing is, lightly hand scribed on the table of the 7 is the word "Baritone." It's harder to see on the 8, but it's there too. So my question is: does anyone know the actual dimensions of the Vandoren "circle S" for both bari and tenor?
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2012
Joined
·
2,135 Posts
I’ve had one for ages that was sold to me as a Bari piece and it measures just under 4 3/4”. The body is super narrow and I would’ve sworn it was a tenor piece when I first bought it!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
128 Posts
To answer my own question... Yeah, they're not bari pieces. I tried one with a Rico Jazz Select 2S bari reed on my MK VI bari and it didn't play worth a damn. Slapped a Marca Jazz 2 tenor reed on it, put it on my Schenkelaars/D&J/Keilwerth stencil tenor and voila! Music! In tune and with a hint of soulful darkness. Switched it over to the R&C stencil tenor and a little less dark, but still a nice lyrical sound, and more in tune to boot. Tried the other one on both tenors and I didn't notice much difference in playability. Both were equally lush when playing soft and growled when I pushed the air through them. Overall I was quite pleased with how they played.
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2012
Joined
·
2,135 Posts
Hmm... I’m going to fish that thing out when I get a chance and slap it on my tenor. It’s been ages since I’ve messed with it and I vaguely recall it being very loose on a tenor neck, but that may have been the neck cork or something. Glad to hear you like yours!
 

·
Mouthpiece Refacer Extraordinaire and Forum Contri
Joined
·
3,407 Posts
These are very long mouthpieces. Their design might not mix well with certain horns which tend to favor shorter, larger chambered designs (older Conns come to mind).

I've normally had to do some finishing work on these (especially the table) to get them to behave - which is different than modern Vandoren pieces which are highly consistent and play right out of the box.
 
1 - 11 of 11 Posts
Top