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Which Mouthpiece Should I Buy?

  • Vandoren V16 (Ebonite T9)

    Votes: 13 54.2%
  • Berg Larsen (HR 115/0)

    Votes: 3 12.5%
  • Jody Jazz HR* (9)

    Votes: 8 33.3%
  • Bari Hybrid (9)

    Votes: 0 0.0%
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Discussion Starter #1
I am thinking of buying a new mouthpiece. Definitely a HR piece with a larger tip opening. This time I thought I would go blind this time and let the SOTW community decide for me. I have a few preselected as there would be so many suggestions. Sometimes I just need to be told what to play on.
 

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Distinguished Member, Forum Contributor 2012-2015
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Bad strategy. You're the only person who knows (or should know) how you want to sound like. Everything starts from there.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I just finished the poll. There are 3 that I have tried and the last one I just threw in there. I have a working setup that I can revert to if it fails.

Another note. I had a JJ HR for a very short time. Needed money... I liked it though.
 

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None of the above. I would go with a Link, Meyer, Brilhart or one of the Ricos. The metalit is my favorite and for under $30 would make a great back-up if you get something else later. It is like asking what your favorite food is.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I still use the Brilhart that you sold me and it is working great as a backup. My main piece is a Beechler Bellite .095. I was hoping if I found something I like, I could sell it for about $150 and get some money back. In a perfect world I would get the Berg 130/0 SMS that I have my eye on but at $340 it is a bit out of my range. Unfortunately the online stores only go up to 120/2 M and the only way I can see it happening is factory direct. I may just go with the buy nothing and like it option.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I will probably end up buying a Metalite/Graftonite anyway. (How could I refuse a mouthpiece of that quality that is the same price as a box of reeds). I am just looking for a new piece to take over as my main piece. I don't really mind paying a lot if it is for a good piece.
 

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You don't say what sound you want, or what horn you play, so it makes it a bit hard, but here is my take.

I like the HR Bergs, but the O baffle is uber-bright - I like the 1 or 2 better. They are also really inconsistent, especially the facing curve (although the SMS seems to be better than the M), so you may need to factor in a reface. (I'm playing a refaced Berg now.)

I have a Jody Jazz HR (and have had it for awhile), but while it is fine, it always ends up as my second or third choice - just missing that umami or something.

I also have the Vandoren, and it worked really nicely with my late 10M, especially down low. High end on my King Cleveland and Dolnet is not as nice. But well made and they are supposed to be very consistent.

Bari Hybrid - I haven't played this. But an unnamed but knowledgeable source told me that Jody Jazz HRs are basically just Bari HRs with better marketing...

I tried the Graftonites (twice, once on alto and once on tenor) but did not like them.

Phil-Tone makes nice pieces, or will modify a stock piece to your requested style, and his prices are reasonable.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Thanks for the info. I think I'm just going to take a little extra out and get the Berg, and then have it refaced if it comes to that.

Also to ndaubenspeck. What is the facing/chamber setup of your Graftonite and what reeds are you using? I found that B5 seems to be the most consistent model. I didn't like the 7C at all.
 

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You can probably find a used HR Berg on here or eBay that is close to the opening you want, and have the refacer both reface it and open it up. Gotta be less than $340.
 

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I don't care for the Graftonites but I love the Metalites. You can get a tenor for $20.
 

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I have been playing for 50 years and about .100" is my max on tenor. Getz and Coltrane sounded OK on their closed mouthpieces! For the price, I keep a A5, B5, C5 and M5. The approach is the same on each but sound a bit different. For the price, get a B5 (about $16 shipped) and keep it as an extra if you find something better.
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member/Forum Contributor 2009
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Bad strategy. You're the only person who knows (or should know) how you want to sound like. Everything starts from there.
+1. Also, you're going to get recommendations for almost every mouthpiece that's on the market.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Just bought a Graftonite B5 and as expected it is nice. The Berg that was $340 is the Vintage Lenny Pickett setup (130/0/SMS) metal. Berg HRs are about $160 I think. I think I may just get a job when school ends. By the end of the summer I should be able to afford my top 3. My preferred tip opening is .095-.110 depending on how it is built. My current backup is still that Ebolin 4* which I can get some nice tones out of with a Rovner Dark and Vandoren Java #4.
 

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Another option if you like the B5 is to go up to a B7 (.105") or spring for the M5 or M7. That Berg really sounds like a bit of a struggle, tip and price wise.
 
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