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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm thinking about jumping into the Yanagisawa pool and had a question about the extra C#-B linkage on the elite models. For those that have tried both the pro and elite models, is the extra linkage a good thing? Is it enough of an improvement to weigh in the decision between a W01 vs. W010?

The reason I ask is that I currently have a Mark VII alto. I love it, though I do have difficulty with the C# to B transition, and to a lesser degree sliding down to Bb. Reach isn't a problem, just the sliding between keys. I've read a lot of people have ergonomic issues with the Mark VII, so this may be a uniquely VII issue. I have no problems with the ergonomics otherwise. The only other altos I've used for a significant time were a Mark VI and a Bundy II, and don't remember those being significantly better or different than the VII regarding the left pinky table and the C#-B transition. Granted it's been a *long* time since I played anything other than the VII.

Ideally I'll get a chance to test out a Yanagisawa before buying, but still looking for a good place to do that in the Dallas area.
 

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Would you best assess that on your own? Find a Yany and try it, for sure. Hands are so different...

My experience, which won't be yours almost certainly, is that regarding the left pinky table my Ref54 is no better nor worse than WO33 (a 10 with solid silver neck and bell), or a WO1. The left pinky table is no longer my most difficult fingering after prioritizing chromatic exercises and scales down to lowest playable note. For me, I can't tell that the extra linkage with the Elite Yanys makes any difference. But maybe your pinkie will be very happy there!

My problem with the WO33 is the right hand side keys. The plane of the hi-F# paddle is strange for me--I hit it on edge vs. the R54 where it falls right under my finger. But some folks don't like the R54 E key because index finger must bend to avoid the post beyond it. The right pinkie table on the R54 is preferable to me.

I could adjust to the WO33, certainly, but I don't prefer the sound so I don't play it. Maybe sound would be your principle priority?
 

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The purpose of the B - C# closing arm is to prevent the C# from opening slightly when rolling or sliding from Bb to B or vice versa. It is a useful mechanism that is often difficult to regulate perfectly on saxes with a lot of flex in the bell key rods. The more modern "fully tilting" LH tables have a Bb/C# "connection" on the outside of the table that makes the B - C# closing adjustment especially useful.
 

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The WO1 has a C#-B linkage. This linkage may be improved on the WO10 but the WO1 already has such a linkage (and your Mark VII also has such a linkage).

For me, the most comfortable left pinky table is on the Buffet-Crampon S1-S3-Senzo. It is not the usual tilting table.
 

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http://www.yanagisawasax.co.jp/en/saxophones/view/95

Both Professional and Elite models have a "seesaw linkage between the C# and Bb table keys [that] facilitates faster, smoother fingering technique."

Only the Elites feature an "additional slider mechanism between the C# and B table keys [that] is a proprietary Yanagisawa design that allows smoother finger transitions between these notes."

OP was asking about the second unique design.

But in my experience, it feels no different nor plays better.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Yeah, the extra connection between C#-B is what I was asking about, not the Bb seesaw which is fairly common as far as I know.

Thanks wanderso, right you are that trying it out myself is the best. But good to know you don't think it's a significant difference.
 

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Well, this all comes from the tilting low Bb, the reverse hinging of the LH little finger keys, and locating the low Bb below (closer to the floor) the C# rather than in line with the C# and B keys.

It becomes very difficult to activate the low Bb without pressing on the bar that tilts it, which pushes down on the low C#.

The solution is to cut off the low Bb's tilting bar and solder the low Bb key into a fixed angle, or alternately to buy an older instrument where the keys are hinged the other way thus acting in accordance with actual human hand anatomy.
 

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(...)

It becomes very difficult to activate the low Bb without pressing on the bar that tilts it, which pushes down on the low C#.
No, not really. With a tilting table, the dangerous zone you have to avoid is on the Bb touchpiece and is just below C# -and the switch from Bb to C# is best done with your pinky making an oblique movement from the (bottom, center or right) position on Bb to C#. An alternative solution is to move the whole left hand to rock the pinky.
The solution is to cut off the low Bb's tilting bar and solder the low Bb key into a fixed angle
In this case, you return to the pinky table of the Balanced Action (and SBA, YAS 23,...). It's not that bad but the Bb-C# transition is a bit difficult.
As I said above, an interesting alternative to the tilting table is offered by Buffet-Crampon, with a broken Bb touchpiece. With this alternative the Bb-C# transition can be done with an horizontal movement of the pinky, i.e. (bottom, right) to (bottom, left)), as if the C# touchpiece occupied the whole left part of the table, or by the rocking movement already described (this rocking movement works better than on the Selmer tilting table).
or alternately to buy an older instrument where the keys are hinged the other way thus acting in accordance with actual human hand anatomy.
With the table keys hinged to the left, C# is harder to press because the leverage is poor (even when C# is cantilevered, I verified on my Vito model 35 before posting). When G# is connected to the other pinky keys (which is a lot more comfortable...), C# is even harder to press.
Also, when the bell keys cups are on the right hand side of the bell (their modern position), keeping the table keys hinged to the left is only possible with levered bell keys (Buffet Dynaction, older Superdynaction, older Grassi, Couesnon Monopole,...), which add friction and are not very responsive.
 

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Yeah, the extra connection between C#-B is what I was asking about, not the Bb seesaw which is fairly common as far as I know.

Thanks wanderso, right you are that trying it out myself is the best. But good to know you don't think it's a significant difference.
Here's what I wrote about this question when I first got my TWO1 and compared it to my A990µB: "The Elites have the extra link between the C# and B on the LH table -- This is the one feature from my alto that I can honestly say I miss a little on the TWO1. The table on the WO1 is very good, but that extra connection really does facilitate finger movement. Yanagisawa should standardize it on all horns."

Let me add this, however: I would not buy a WO10 instead of a WO1 solely to get the extra linkage.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Good to know you like it. Sounds like it could be really nice for some people, but maybe only a minor/secondary factor in choosing the WO10. This is kind of what I expected, didn't think it would be enough to choose the WO10, just curious if it was a total non-factor or not. I definitely need to check it out and all the other differences with the WO1 when I can.
 
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