i am looking to get a upgrade and am looking for some suggestions on what to try
The early model Aristocrats from the 30s, with the split bell keys, are interesting horns, but in my experience, they don't play like baris. Early Crat altos or tenors will shake the walls. The bari has more of a Mulliganesque voice. It's not gonna aaa-oomp like a 12M.As far as modern-esq vintage bari's, a Buescher Aristocrat or 400, a Conn 12M, or a Martin Committee would be good choices. They aren't too hard to come by, are fairly mouthpiece friendly, and are very solid horns.
Magnas are good (ask Bootman), but you'll never find one. 11Ms and low A 400s can be found, but tend to be ex-school horns that look like they were used to break rocks.And all have low A counterparts if you absolutely have to have a bari keyed to low A (a late 400, 11M, or low A Magna)...but the low A variations tend to be less common, some more so than others.
I obviously agree.I guess I was a little vague on what I meant by Aristocrat. The later Aristo's (very late) were more akin to a 400 than the Big B/TT variety...and this is what I had in mind when I wrote that.
But Big B's are good choices as well (although they are less mouthpiece friendly).
rpc's work quite nicely (well at least on my big b, as does a link te as does a rascher)True. The mouthpiece that can really make these horns yawp might not even exist yet.