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I've been going back and forth different reeds and I want to put a stop to it. I played on a vintage reed, Vandoren blue box, red javas, V12, and rico royals. And now, from what I hear, I am thinking about purchasing a Rico Reserve Classic but I don't know the reed comparison to the V12 #3 (currently using) Can anyone give me any other good reed choices or help with the reed comparison to the rico reserve classics?
 

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Alexander Reeds.......
 

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Never liked Alexanders myself, the tips are too thin. As far as the best.. you need to match it to your mouthpiece and you to achieve the level of resistance that feels good and plays all over the range of the horn. Gotta take into account that most reeds are unbalanced also so they aren't going to play well unless you adjust them.
 

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According to Dexter, it's a "Happiness is a nice wet Rico reed". How you gonna argue with that?
 

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yeah...but that was in the 70's.....(or somethin like that)
 

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There is no best, only the best for you and your particular set-up. Unfortunately it's a long process of trial and error. One guy likes Alexanders or VD's or Ricos, another one doesn't. In my experience I find Gonzales reeds cheap and consistent. Also Rigotti Gold and Rico Royals. I get as many rejects from the high priced as the less expensive, which can be really frustrating. Some guys buy the standard Rico's in boxes of 25 and cull through them, and adjust. As far as strength comparison, there's one on Vandoren's site and also Rico's and you can probably find one posted on this site in a previous thread.
 

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I do about 75 rehearsals and 25 gigs on my alto every year.
The last 3 years, I haven't spent any energy on reeds at all.
I am using Fibracell Medium.
Have tons of Rico, Van Doren and others, but why bother when you can pick up your horn and
play?
In fact, I used the same reed for one year. I only took it off for cleaning.
Lately, I have also tried Forestone. Seems to be ok as well.
 

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It is individual preference & probably a little to do with your physical structure. Even flute players have different responses with different lip plates. I have tried them all and I've never been able to get Vandoren to work for me. I use Rico Jazz Select Filed-best for me.
 

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There is no best, it all depends on your embouchure, your mouthpiece and lig combo, and your personal likes in how a reed responds and sounds. Personally I love the Rico Jazz Select filled for jazz and Vandoren Traditional for classical work.
 

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YMMV, but I currently like Gonzales and La Voz most. Used to play Vandoren bluebox and Javas--liked the sound, but got tired of the inconsistency in hardness. Generally except for ZZs and Rico Select jazz, which I find too shrill, I can adapt to just about anything (as long as it isn't too bright, too dead, or too resistant), and that seems to depend on the day, the weather and my chops at any particular moment. So I tend to rotate through them a lot, even using ones I gave up on months ago because sometimes they miraculously rise from the dead to play a swan song.
 
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