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Author Topic: Help me choose.  (Read 759 times)

Offline gerardo1000

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Help me choose.
« on: April 14, 2023, 06:35:09 AM »
I am a 71 years old beginner student of flute, and I'd like to buy my first clarinet, but I have a limited budget.
What would you choose between a brand new Jean Paul clarinet, made in China but apparently of decent quality, and an old Yamaha YS26 completely refurbished and cleaned by a professional? The Jean Paul is sold for $249.00. The Yamaha that I mentioned is sold on E Bay for around 240.00 and shows pictures of the clarinet taken apart for refurbishing. Thank you for your opinion.

Offline windydankoff

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Re: Help me choose.
« Reply #1 on: April 14, 2023, 06:48:29 AM »
Chinese instruments can be good but they are prone to small defects from semi-skilled assembly and lack of player-testing. The Yamaha, if overhauled by a good stateside professional, is a fine-sounding instrument, well made, and more likely to please.
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Offline DaveLeBlanc

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Re: Help me choose.
« Reply #2 on: April 16, 2023, 12:50:59 PM »
I would definitely go for a Yamaha vice Chinese Jean Paul.

However, there is a Chinese maker, Kenny Woodwinds, who makes an incredible clarinet for around your budget. I don't know if he's still in business, but last I checked they were selling for around $300, and were poly-cylindrical, nearly pro-grade for a great price.
David Watson of the original The Clarinet Pages
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Offline windydankoff

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Re: Help me choose.
« Reply #3 on: April 17, 2023, 05:58:07 PM »
I buy thumb rests from Kenny for myself and clients. He replies quickly at hzxiaoyu@qq.com   For more info: there is a Kenny clarinet showing on Reverb.com with a review and photos (but it's been sold).
« Last Edit: April 18, 2023, 06:50:32 AM by windydankoff »
Windy at BLACK • HOLE Clarinets
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http://www.windydankoff.com/black-hole-clarinets.html

Offline DaveLeBlanc

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Re: Help me choose.
« Reply #4 on: April 18, 2023, 03:29:57 PM »
If this is the one you're mentioning,
https://reverb.com/item/6363913-kenny-woodwinds-clarinet-poly-cylindrical-pro-level

This was my listing from several years ago. Surprised it still shows up on Reverb.
David Watson of the original The Clarinet Pages
Virginia Beach, Virginia

Offline Airflyte

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Re: Help me choose.
« Reply #5 on: April 19, 2023, 05:07:12 PM »
If you could stretch the budget a bit, the Lyrique Noblissima , Backun Bliss or Kessler Solist are good clarinets.
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Offline DaveLeBlanc

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Re: Help me choose.
« Reply #6 on: April 24, 2023, 09:18:27 AM »
If you could stretch the budget a bit, the Lyrique Noblissima , Backun Bliss or Kessler Solist are good clarinets.
One used to be able to find a used Bliss on eBay for $300. I doubt that's the case anymore, though.
David Watson of the original The Clarinet Pages
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Offline LarryS

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Re: Help me choose.
« Reply #7 on: May 11, 2023, 01:31:13 PM »
I'd definitely go Yamaha. They don't know how to make bad instruments.
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Offline modernicus

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Re: Help me choose.
« Reply #8 on: May 11, 2023, 05:05:26 PM »
Agreed.
If you ain't got 'em, that's why you need 'em...

Offline Tarh331_Dad

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Re: Help me choose.
« Reply #9 on: May 15, 2023, 03:39:19 PM »
The Vito Dazzlers are phenomenally good horns, vis-a-vis the plastic Bundy clarinet I got in sixth grade.

A few years ago, I grabbed a PINK Vito Dazzler for a young lady in the family, and I could have been first chair All State playing on that horn.

There are three Dazzlers on "the" website right now:

https://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_nkw=vito+dazzler

There's a yellow Dazzler which needs a new cork on its mouthpiece; a trio of red white & blue Dazzlers, and a fully refurbished blue Dazzler [the price there is way high, but he's got a "Make Offer" on the listing, and, in my experience, sellers with "Make Offer" are usually ready & willing to work with you on the price].

In general, your biggest expense [and your biggest hassle] will be the reeds.

You'll likely need to start soft [down around a #2 or a #2.5 reed], and, over time, you'll try to work your lip muscles [your "embouchure"] up to something stronger, around a #4 or a #5, although that takes a while.

The reeds are not cheap, however; it looks like the Vandoren Traditionals start at about $2.50 per.

And you have to learn to be very careful not to crack the tips of the reeds [first put the ligature on the mouthpiece and then slide the reed under the ligature; do NOT put the reed on the mouthpiece first and then try to slide the ligature over the reed afterwards; that's how you'll rip apart the tip of a $2.50 reed].

Also, when it feels like a reed is going all soft & soggy on you, as though the reed has no more life left in it, then set aside the reed for three to six months, and return to it after it's hardened up a little, and see whether you can't breath some life back into it.

If you're on a tight budget, it's silly to be throwing tired reeds into the trash; wait a while, and then give the old reeds a second chance at springing back to life.

One other money saver: Go to Walmart, and buy some Lanolin [it's in the baby department, for nursing mothers], and use just the tiniest little smidgen of a smudge of Lanolin on your corks.

It would probably work for your flutes, as well.

I will say, that yellow Dazzler has aged ["yellowed"] into quite a nice antique cream color.

That's what happened with our pink Dazzler; it had aged into a very soft & pleasant color of pink.

Offline Airflyte

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Re: Help me choose.
« Reply #10 on: May 23, 2023, 05:37:03 PM »
I am a 71 years old beginner student of flute, and I'd like to buy my first clarinet, but I have a limited budget.
What would you choose between a brand new Jean Paul clarinet, made in China but apparently of decent quality, and an old Yamaha YS26 completely refurbished and cleaned by a professional? The Jean Paul is sold for $249.00. The Yamaha that I mentioned is sold on E Bay for around 240.00 and shows pictures of the clarinet taken apart for refurbishing. Thank you for your opinion.

Gerardo, did you find a clarinet yet?
"The Clarinet - in a class of its own"

Visit Phil Pedler's Clarinet Pages NEW website!
https://sites.google.com/clarinetpages.net/clarinetpages