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Greetings All!
I have a question and I hope this is the correct forum for it. What do the majority of professional/advanced players use on a tenor sax, a mouthpiece with a large facing and a soft reed or a mouthpiece with a small facing and a stiff reed? I am looking mainly for generalities however specific mouthpiece and reed combinations would also be appreciated. Thanks in advance!
 

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7* tip opening with a 2 1/2 reed.
 

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There of course is no standard, but if somebody said a #7 Link with a #3 reed was it (speaking of tenor here), I wouldn't argue the point. But, it's not what I use. I favor a .115 or .120 Berg Larsen-type with a #2 1/2 reed. There have been extremely large and extremely small mouthpieces used by major, well-known players, like Plas Johnson's .160 tenor Berg with a Plasticover #1 1/2 baritone sax reed.
 

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I prefer larger tip openings (~9ish) with medium reeds (~3).
 

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Coltrane and Ben Webster both played 5* (.085") Otto Links
 

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Selmer Balanced Action Tenor Saxophone, Powell Flute
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No USA Florida Link STM 5* with a Medium Hard Lavoz reed. I'm no Chris Potter, but I get to play a lot and have done this professionally for 10 years now.
 

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Early Babbit Link 6 in metal or hard rubber with,as of late, Rigotti 3 medium. I was playing the Rico Jazz Sellect reeds but they changed. I think it's because what I played early on and still feel the most comfortable with.
It's hard to beat the sound of a good Link.
 

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8* with (old flat box) Zonda 2s....
 

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This question = what size shoes do you wear. Mouthpiece setup is a very personal thing and there's no "right" answer
 

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This question = what size shoes do you wear. Mouthpiece setup is a very personal thing and there's no "right" answer
Well, the question is what do the majority use, not what do you use, ore what is best, so it is vaguely feasible someone could do a survey. It may be dependant on demographic though in that many older players may be sticking with a mouthpiece they have always used from back in the day, when there were few options.

In those days it tended to be Otto Link as we know (wot maybe Berg Larsen a runner up) so I imagine many older pros are still using their old Link. Younger players growing up in a world in which there are many more good pieces to choose from (not to mention changes in sound concept in the last 40 years or so) means there may be a lot more variation.
 

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This thread is elitist! Should be reported to the Amatuer Police. ;)
 

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Greetings All!
I have a question and I hope this is the correct forum for it. What do the majority of professional/advanced players use on a tenor sax, a mouthpiece with a large facing and a soft reed or a mouthpiece with a small facing and a stiff reed? I am looking mainly for generalities however specific mouthpiece and reed combinations would also be appreciated. Thanks in advance!
Hello.

Just so you end up with some kind of idea of where to go.

If you are talking Jazz pro ...most will be on a Link metal or rubber or versions of said design made by others.
I know personally of players that use as little as 5 or as much as 9* ...but average is the 7*

I have a old friend that is a studio session player. He doesn't get to play jazz that often and spends lots of time on the road with numerous pop/rock bands ...he has a Studio and Brecker 2 Dave Gardala mouthpieces and the studio is on the horn near all the time.
I sometimes find myself in a rock setting now and then and have never found a problem with my EB STM Link.

If you are talking classical player ...I would specify that here and they will probably piont you towards a Selmer Soloist type small opening piece.
 

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If you are talking Jazz pro ...most will be on a Link metal or rubber or versions of said design made by others.
I know personally of players that use as little as 5 or as much as 9* ...but average is the 7*
7* is what Phil Barone told me was the most popular tip size among pros that he has served over the years.
 

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VI Soprano, Searchlight Alto, TH&C Tenor
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IF you don't have ready access to a friendly shop and

IF you're asking about a good generic pro mouthpiece (given that you're going to try out various reeds regardless)

I'd suggest a Link (yes, 7* is kind of standard, though a little less wouldn't be bad to start out with) new ones straight out of the box can be sketchy. there are some good refacers who can clean them right up if you don't have immediate luck or the opportunity/experience to look at a few before selecting one.
 

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7* is what Phil Barone told me was the most popular tip size among pros that he has served over the years.
Yes I remember his quote... And he pointed near everyone in that direction. He always insisted that Coltrane mainly played on a 7* too.

I would just like to add for the original poster ...I would strongly advise you get your teacher or an accomplished player to help you with shoping for a Link, as present day Otto Links are quite hit and miss. There are a few off the shelf pieces I have told players of ( that are very consistent ) Jody Jazz HR 7* . At a reasonable cost. In the U.K Ed Pillinger makes a nice NYT 7* ...but I find them a bit tight on the cork compared to the Link.
You will hear of others but they can get somewhat expensive. The Newish Otto Link New Vintage Tone Master is nice ... But again they can be a funny shape at the tip.
 
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