Cheap Sax Vs Vintage Sax / How Much is it You?

Just a quick video to show that the horn is only a small percentage of your sound. Overall your core sound comes from your unique oral cavity, all of the music you have absorbed through years of listening and practice. 5 to 10% comes from equipment.


Copper 5 says:

Spread your message to all of those cats that think the price and value of the horn matters SOOO much! It’s THIER fault if they don’t sound the way they want to, not the horn! (and the mouth piece for sure) Thank You.

Filip Kolasinski says:

Sup man!
I own a tenor selmer mark VI silver with the F# claff from 1964. Great horns!

Bob Sax says:


Madeline Marie Tuggle says:

Yamahas aren’t cheap though, maybe do a video were you get one with an “off brand” $200 one vs your vintage one. but you can definitely tell the difference. all saxophones are different as well.

BlasJohnny says:

You’re Right
But how about the mouthpiece?
If you play a cheap mouthpiece VS Yours will You Sound The Some ?
I would like to hear from you
Demonstrated on the Tenor and The Alto

Coffin Man says:

Well, I play a Sakshama MB2 on a Jupiter horn, It goes so out of tune as you go up that it’s terrible.
I feel sure a Yam or Selmer wouldn’t be like that.
Tone is ok though I think.
Notice your “cheap horn” was a Yam.

Paul Walker says:

Thank You.

Coleman Adamson says:

The Yama sounds good….but the difference is more than 5%. Not to take anything from you. It is you who make the Yama sound good. But the better instrument had a much fuller tone…a greater depth. Sorry, I listened several times and that’s the way I hear it.

Kunal Olleri says:

brilliant! thank you very much!

Silver 10M says:

If I had to pick one single piece of ‘equipment’ that made the biggest difference in the tone…..the reed. Had times when I thought the horn was messed up….bad reed !

MirabelleValmont says:

Her what r the Names of dem both Saxes?? Im looking for a saxophone like this!

MrBaglietto says:

I have a saxophone called Jupiter, and I always thought that the sound it emitted was not the right one, but because of the saxophone, not because of me.

Chris Nowak says:

Just curious, what mouthpiece and reed you used for these examples?

Mel B says:

A point well put and followed up with the proof of your words. The difference becomes even smaller once the sound has ‘travelled’ through a microphone and PA system, not to mention the infinite variation in acoustics from venue to venue! Thanks for posting.

BariMiersma says:

I’ve been researching brands to buy a tenor sax after growing up playing the alto and have been wringing my hands about how much to spend. Thanks for putting things in perspective.

rand meza says:

wish I could play da sax!

daddycavefish says:


boxing1000 says:

they dont sound similar at all,the yamaha sounds like crap compared to the selmer…

Shinigami says:

The second one sounds a lot better

theantiantihero says:

Every beginner should watch this video before buying a horn. As Stantawn demonstrates, you can’t buy a good sound, you have to earn it in the practice room. No matter what you play, you will always sound like you.

david lassell says:

As a band director, this is gold. More kids need to watch this and realize that time blowing into your horn makes more of a difference than anything else. (Also having a horn that’s not leaking is nice). Great sound, man.

oceangamer 21 says:

I just got a like 70’s beuscher aristocrat alto so would that be considered vintage

Mike Feher says:

Very Coltrane-esque! Great sound, sir!

Fernando Ferreira says:

Enjoyed the video man. But if the set up is only 5% why do people spend a fortune on horns and mouthpieces?

SrBill says:

Perfect sound

MrBaglietto says:

and the Selmer? whats your opinion? Thanks¡¡¡

Neighborhood cat says:

I have a sax from 1910 which is an alto that is silver

magdalenojuan says:

What is the name of the old sax?

Monstahh says:

Are you learning to play on a harder reed? if not, then you have to play on a softer reed. The sound has alot of air noise or either you don’t start the note on your toungue.

mark peotter says:

This is such a great lesson topic! My teacher used to say 50% player, 30% “set up” (mouthpiece, ligature, reed), 10% neck, 10% rest of the horn. I say maybe more than 50% player. You did not, however, discuss how the timbre DOES change with volume swells and drops. And THAT is affected by the metal, the laquer, the pads, etc. Some saxes seem brighter at every volume level, some need to get loud to become brighter, etc. Again, the differences are not huge!

Spikerkitty says:

so to add advice in finding your sound, the metal the instrument is made of does make a difference in tone, now I just picked up the saxophone and I quickly transitioned from alto to Bari. but I do have at least 4 years of experience on wind instruments, now my main instrument is the French Horn and as far as I know for almost all wind instruments the mouthpiece can also effect the sound. now I’m speaking as a brass player on all of this but I have found it can apply to the woodwinds as well. so take that into consideration when playing your instrument.

Joey TheSaxMan says:

I see the point you’re making, but the big thing dude is your mouthpiece, so that’ll probably be 40 % of your sound which makes a huge difference! Which is what S. Blake stated in a master class. Play any sax with a 4C and not so great! Great for beginners but not so great for experienced players. We are 60 % of our sound, cavities in our head and embouchure all have to do with that as you stated! There is a difference in sound with the saxes , but we appreciate your point , keep the groove!

Alberto Henriquez says:

Very much appreciated that!!! It was taking me a long time to decide what brand to buy and I always knew if I bought a cheap horn a professional would make that cheap horn sound great. I havent played in over 20 years since grade school and I bought a Yamaha YTS-26. I have a lot of practicing to do. thank you.

Xmas-Ray Mul'Herin says:

Thanks so much for articulating the importance of technique over gear! I’ve experienced & heard so many similar empirical studies, even among oboists, that support this fact. Plus, getting comfortable with one instrument, whichever, can be essential, as you eluded, to developing healthy technique. Sorry about changing horns/necks/mouthpieces later or not at all.

Alberto Henriquez says:

I need that chord bro!! ASAP!!!

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