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trying to understand where to try/buy NEW mpcs from Selmer, Otto Link, Vandoren, if anywhere, in the NYC area.

Roberto's appears to have used items only.
Same for JL.
KB carries other brands.

Trying to figure out a day of trying out sop and tenor mouthpieces and maximize my options, especially around facing size options of same mpcs, which is tough with places with misc vintage items.
 

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Keilwerth saxes (S/A/T), Selmer clarinets (S/B), Altus Azumi flute
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If you can make it over to Northern or Central Jersey, USA Horn in Union and Dillon Music in Woodbridge both have very good selections. Otherwise, the Sam Ash on 34th street actually has a decent selection of new mouthpieces.
 

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Mark at USA Horn doesn't stock many new pieces. He has a bunch of used and vintage stuff around that came with horns traded-in but he doesn't go out of his way to stock new pieces. If you know what you are looking for call and ask him and he'll tell you if he has what you want or not. If you just show up there thinking you're going to try a bunch of new production pieces you're probably going to be a bit disappointed. That's just not his gig. I'd call around and find out what Sam Ash has at there area stores - there are several. You also might call Liberty Music in Mountainside NJ and see what they have in stock. Not many brick & mortar retail places stock a lot of pieces anymore because they have trouble competing with the online sellers.
 

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Not really sure, since I'm not from NY, but do Weiner Music have an actual store, or are they just online? They seem to usually have a pretty good inventory. In any case, they do have a nice trial/return policy.
Also, when I was in NYC we wandered into the big Guitar Center (I forget exactly where but smack in the middle of Manhattan somewhere) and even they had at least a handful of sax mouthpieces (of course the most popular makes/models) in stock, maybe more than a handful. I don't know if they'd let you try them out but I'd think they would. They had all kind of keyboards/guitars/drums lying around for people to play.
 

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The only store I could find with a selection of mouthpieces to try out is the Manhattan Sam Ash. The White Plains Sam Ash is focused on student instrument and mouthpieces, as are most outlying stores.

Fourteen years ago I tried out 5 different mouthpieces on alto and tenor at Roberto's and selected the mouthpieces that worked best for me (an alto Meyer G #7 and Meyer 5 on tenor). I was coming from Berg Larsen and Yanigasawa metal mouthpieces on alto and tenor respectively. I've found there is no local store that offered that kind of opportunity and so I've been ordering mouthpieces from WWBW and Amazon.com.

After buying three new horns this year (alto, tenor, and soprano), I think I've been fairly successful at finding a mouthpiece that suits me and the horns. So far, I sent one mouthpiece back to Amazon (Vandoren Optimum AL3), one back to WWBW (Vandoren Optimum TL4), and sold two mouthpieces on Ebay (Yamaha CM #5 tenor, Ottolink Vintage Series Tenor 6*).

I've kept playing on a Theo Wanne NY Bros 2 #6 on alto (which sounds about the same as the Meyer G #7), kept playing on a Vandoren V16 T6 on tenor, and a Vandoren Optimum SL3 on soprano. I reordered the Optimum AL3 because I ended up regretting sending it back! For me, the only noticeable differences between these fairly similar mouthpieces are volume and intonation. The AL3 and TW NY Bros 2 certainly helped me in that regard, likely due to the smaller tip openings.

I'm going to sell two more mouthpieces on Ebay at some point (Yanigasawa Hard Rubber #5 that came with the horn and the Meyer G #7).
 

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The only store I could find with a selection of mouthpieces to try out is the Manhattan Sam Ash. The White Plains Sam Ash is focused on student instrument and mouthpieces, as are most outlying stores. ......

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Yeah I kinda figured that's what it's become. I grew up in north Jersey, went to school in New Brunswick, and worked in Edison for a while. The Paramus and Edison stores used to stock some selection years ago before both the internet and lots of boutique makers showed up on the scene. The 3-4 music stores here in Denver that are not almost strictly guitar and drum shops (guitars, drums, keys, DJ & PA equipment) carry very little pro-line gear anymore. They've all etched-out their niches in the Denver area rental market and stock little more than reeds and a few step-up mouthpieces for the kid who takes to it enough to warrant a piece better than the plastic door wedge that comes with the rental horn. Sax Alley has become the only place within 500+ miles of Denver that's worth going to if you've been playing for more than a few years.
 

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Yes we do! Thank you for thinking/suggesting us.
We are not in NYC however. Our store is about a 30 min train ride on the LIRR to Mineola on Long Island. By car could be the same, but if you hit the famous NYC traffic i expect a longer trip.
We have a large selection of mouthpieces in stock and available for trial, but we do trials by appointment only.
If anyone is interested, you can contact Al (our trial coordinator) at 516 747-5107 or ask for me.
Cheers!
SW
 

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Vandoren has a studio on 37th between 8th and 9th. You can go in there anytime to try any of their equipment- mouthpieces, reeds, ligs. They are super nice, informative, and are usually great about hooking you up with some reed samples. Completely worth a visit, and there's no charge. Usually you can walk in, but I'd recommend giving them a call ahead of time at (212) 399-9457 to set up an appointment. That way you can make sure they are available to help you out.
 

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Vandoren has a studio on 37th between 8th and 9th. You can go in there anytime to try any of their equipment- mouthpieces, reeds, ligs. They are super nice, informative, and are usually great about hooking you up with some reed samples. Completely worth a visit, and there's no charge. Usually you can walk in, but I'd recommend giving them a call ahead of time at (212) 399-9457 to set up an appointment. That way you can make sure they are available to help you out.
This is true. I don't think they sell out of there, but it was super-informative when I just stumbled across it one day while looking for guitar dealers with my daughter. It was quite cool as we're just wandering hallways on the 4th or 6th floor of some building and I see this door marked with the Vandoren logo... They have a very hi-tech reed gauging system that the dude demonstrated to me, to help you find reeds that match your super-special ones, etc. I also got a handful of sample reeds just for walking in and asking a lot of questions.
 

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The other thing about going anywhere and trying a bunch of mouthpieces is you need to have a buttload of fresh reeds with you, different cuts and strengths, because a fluky great reed can make you think a POS mouthpiece is great, or vice versa.
 

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Hey, we have a good amount of those pieces over here at Liberty Music in NJ. Drop me a PM if you're interested.

Brian
 
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