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Distinguished SOTW Member
3,347 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
just putting this out there..........

I ordered both these mouthpieces as I was looking for something that a) had a bigger tip than my NY Meyer 4M and b) was slightly less direct and buzzy in sound. I love the meyer, but it wasn't floating my boat so much any more. So,
here's what I found.

Both the V16 A7M and V5 A35 have the same tip opening, so I was useing the same reeds when comparing (Vandoren ZZ #3)
The V16 has a bigger chamber than my meyer and the sound is certainly rounder and less direct, but the baffle gives it a contemporary kind of edge, but the sound is a little 'square' for my liking. The curve on the V-16 feels quite short too, which I feel affects the flexibility of the tone colour and response on the extreme ends of the horn, especialy the upper end. The palm keys tend to get a bit thin and have a volume and sound threshold that closes up at a certian point. This mouthpiece feels great to play lead alto in a modern sort of setting, but lacks the versatility to perform in a wide range of settings. It is a very sweet sounding mouthpiece at softer volumes, although the clarity of response is not great, but as the dynamic increases iis becomes a different mouthpiece altogether, and the edge comes out in the sound more.

The V5 A35, on the hand, seemed quite dark at first, but once it got going was really impressive. The response feels the same right up and down the horn and at all dynamic ranges. The thing I liked the best however, was that the mouthpiece does not 'put' your sound in a certain area, it is entirely dictated by you. Whilst it is not an inherently bright piece, it certainly has the punch to compete at louder volumes and responds well to what I call 'bright articulation and inflections.' the curve feels longer too, and the mouthpiece can take as much or as little air as you want.

For me the winner is the A35, although the V16 is a fine mouthpiece, but perhaps a little more one dimensional.

Distinguished SOTW member
4,689 Posts
I've been playing on a borrowed V5 A35 for the last month and my impressions are similar to yours. I had been playing on a V16 A8M before but I became dissatisfied with it, in part because I believe the table has warped but also because of the lack of flexibility in tone that you talk about.
I also think that this is due to the short facing.

So far I've played the V5 in more "legit" situations but next week I will play it in a big band, i'm curious to see how it will work in that situation. It might become my main mpc.

Does Steve Coleman still play a V5 A35 ? He and Donald Harrison were the first ones to use that mpc in the mid/late 80's.
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