Saxophone Forum


by Parentofnewsaxplayer
(5 posts)
7 years ago

Victory?

My son asked for a sax and I bought a Victory. Any thoughts?

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  1. by Parentofnewsaxplayer
    (5 posts)

    6 years ago

    Re: Victory?

    help?

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    1. by MarkLavelle
      (300 posts)

      6 years ago

      Re: Victory?

      I'm a relative newbie here (~3yrs on sax, but *many* more on other instruments), but since it's a brand I've never heard of I'll guess that very few of us have ever played one (which would explain the lack of response). After 35+ years of acquiring musical instruments I have reached the conclusion that almost any instrument can be *good enough* for some particular person at some particular time. If you're happy with the price and your kid can play it without getting terribly frustrated, it's probably just fine (and I suggest you avoid teachers who say it's not good enough). On the other hand, be prepared to trade up in about 2 years if they're really into playing the sax! Real musicians (pro or amateur) are never totally satisfied...

      Reply To Post


    2. by MRFIXIT
      (19 posts)

      6 years ago

      Re: Victory?

      JBT said something I really agree with. " -Have you checked how level the toneholes are? -What about the fit of the hinge tube keys? Is there side to side wobble? -What shape and style are the pivot screws.? Does the key bind when they are snugly tightened? -Is the key metal too soft so that the keys bend and easily go out of adjustment? -Do the key corks and felts come off to the touch due to the poor quality adhesive? -Is the cork at adjustment linkages too "squshy" to keep good regulation? -Are the springs poor quality steel and loose in their posts. -Is there adequate glue in the key cups to hold and float the pad? -Are there thick cardboard shims in any of the key cups to compensate for the poorly designed key? -Are there burrs on the edges of the toneholes that cut the pads? -Are the plastic key buttons securely in their holders? -Are the pads made with a quality leather or do they rip with the slightest scratch of a fingernail? -Are the octaves above low D, G, and A in tune?" I want to add - Students who start on new wind instruments in this price range rarely continue. It is partly due to frustration with a non-working instrument. It can also be due to parents' frustrations at having to pay to have the thing fixed all the time. And good or bad, I also believe that monthly payment on a better instrument keeps up the support from home. Every time they write a check, they ask "Am I getting my money's worth and is my child practicing?" I hope you at least bought a used, major brand like Yamaha, Bundy etc. sax in good shape, and now Junior is ripping it up with joy!

      Reply To Post


  2. by JBTSAX
    (364 posts)

    6 years ago

    Re: Victory?

    You have purchased one of the many brands of Chinese made saxophones that are currently flooding the market. Generally speaking they are poorly assembled with inferior quality parts. Almost all of them come with a terrible mouthpiece. My suggestion is to get a Yamaha 4C mouthpiece and throw the Chinese made one away. Then take the sax to a reputable repair shop to see if they can put it in it's best adjustment possible. If you are lucky it will play well enough in tune to get by for the one or two years the instrument will last before needing more repairs than it is worth.

    Reply To Post


    1. by MarkLavelle
      (300 posts)

      6 years ago

      Re: Victory?

      This is exactly the kind of absolutist thinking I was trying to advise against, but I do agree that the mouthpiece is likely to be the weakest link. For what it's worth, I'd recommend a Yamaha 5C...

      Reply To Post


  3. by BassSaxMonster
    (5 posts)

    6 years ago

    Re: Victory?

    In the future, avoid ANY horn that's made in China with an American name, without a model, under $1000.00, or if you're looking for a professional (under $3000-$4000). But it won't hurt for your son to stick with it now; (a good mouthpiece would do him good as said before).

    Reply To Post


    1. by Parentofnewsaxplayer
      (5 posts)

      6 years ago

      Re: Victory?

      Thanks so much for all of your feedback - we really appreciate the info.

      Reply To Post


      1. by Blotto Link
        (24 posts)

        6 years ago

        Re: Victory?

        I own an Victory saxophone. It is manafactured by the same company that manafactures some of the better known and more respected names in the industry. Do some homework on eBay, compare the pictures that you see, then go to your local music store. You will see that that the Victory is EXACTLY the same instrument as the XXXXXXX. (I could get into trouble for saying it). Despite what resident experts tell you, the saxophone comes with a Yamaha mouthpiece. It is plastic, but it is NOT what is claimed. It is not junk. It's just not a mainstream name. Have you seen a Victory appear on the used market? I haven't.

        Reply To Post


        1. by JBTSAX
          (364 posts)

          6 years ago

          Re: Victory?

          I would like Blotto Link to supply the name of the company that manufactures the Victory saxes and also the names of the better known and more respected brands that are manufactured by that company as well. I don't think he can. "You will see that the Victory is exactly the same instrument as the XXXXXXX. (I could get into trouble for saying it)" is absolute nonsense. Without any factual information to back it up that kind of statement has no meaning whatsoever. Parentofnewsaxplayer please take those comments with a grain of salt, especially since the poster just joined the forum and the first post is to defend a cheap Chinese made saxophone that he just happens to own. John

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        2. by Parentofnewsaxplayer
          (5 posts)

          6 years ago

          Re: Victory?

          Oh....Thanks for the feedback.

          Reply To Post


        3. by Blotto Link
          (24 posts)

          6 years ago

          Re: Victory?

          Well, jbt, it all comes down to experience. If you did your homework and actually played the instruments which you endorse and the ones you trash, you'd be a little more open-minded to a differing opinion. You require a lot of qualification on my part before you will accept my opinion, yet you submit NO substantiation of your opinions. Re: supplying the names of the factories and the brand names: come on. What would you do, CALL the factories? Then if you DID call the factories, you'd never believe anything because you couldn't SEE or PLAY the instruments. You Probably wouldn't have more than one saxophone to compare it to. I'm not going to get into this sort of contest. If you did your homework, you'd know. I've done more homework than most. (Yes, really. I can't say any more than that). let's agree to disagree. I get the feeling that you don't get out much. I've been a follower of this board tor a fairly long tiime.

          Reply To Post


        4. by JBTSAX
          (364 posts)

          6 years ago

          Re: Victory?

          Blotto, can I call you by your first name? Putting more BS on top of you previous BS does not make a very convincing case for your opinions previously expressed as facts. Criticizing me is also an incredibly poor substitute for giving true and verifiable information to support the claims you made in your previous post. Please take a look at my forum profile before you start making assumptions about how much "homework" I have done. In my profession as saxophone repair technician, I have had dozens of these Chinese saxophones that sell for under $200 come across my bench under a variety of brand names. Each and every one has significant structural, design, and quality of materials problems too numerous to mention. After repairing those that the customer is willing to pay what it takes to make them playable, I play test each instrument and check the evenness of the notes and the intonation with a tuner. There are just a few brands of Chinese saxophones that sell between $400 - $600 + that are acceptable quality for a beginning student sax. None of the instruments selling for half that price are a wise investment. They are basically "throw away" instruments. They may play ok for a while, but when taken in for repair it usually costs more to fix what's wrong than the instrument cost in the first place. Furthermore, there is no resale values on these instruments at all. Once it is used, the value drops to almost nothing. You are right Blotto, it does come down to experience. An experienced player would not own a Victory sax and praise its virtues. An experienced saxophone consumer would not make vague claims about which companies make which brands of saxophones without a shred of information to back up those claims. This is not a contest. It is about actually helping people who post questions on this forum by giving them accurate facts and information. By the way do you know what the slang term blotto generally refers to? John

          Reply To Post


        5. by Blotto Link
          (24 posts)

          6 years ago

          Re: Victory?

          I figured that you were a tech. You guys scream the loudest because it's in your interest to scream. Players come to your shop with a $300-- -$400.00 saxophone and they don't understand why they have to play another three hundred for an overhaul. In the owners' minds, the equation just doesn't balance. I suggest that you reread my initial comments. You may think a little differently about what you recently wrote to me and the assumptions you make. I don't give a hoot about your profile. I don't care what you do for a living, what you think you do for a living or what you think you have accomplished. I really don't. I DO know that you're more than a little closed-minded and too quick to make a personal attack against someone whose opinion differs from yours. In forty-two years of playing, I have PLAYED probably two hundred or so different instruments. (No, not ten minutes' worth of playing--- which is about all the time that you should have time for if you're a handy dandy horn tech). Some of them I have owned. Others I have test played at conventions. Some were friends' horns. Some were loaners. If you have REALLY been doing any close comparisons. you would see not just striking similarities among many of the instruments, but actual replications. It is impossible to convince you about anything that I've said because you can't have my experiences, just like I can't have yours. I DO suspect that you're seeing a lot of major damage because your client base is student-based like almost all instrument repair shops. Do you think an eleven year-old treats a saxophone with the same care as an adult pro? Hardly. Parents buy the cheapest instrument for their kids (usually) because they don't have faith that the kid is worth shelling out $1,000.00 for. When you DO see a student horn, you're seeing less expensive instruments owned by boneheaded adolescents who leave their instruments unattended, and their cases unlatched. When a kid comes in with a selmer, more than likely, it has been treated properly. What you are seeing is this: more broken "cheap" Chinese instruments than expensive (supposedly) non-Chinese made. Your assumption is that the "cheap" horns are no good because you see more of the broken cheap horns than you see broken "Big Four" horns. And, as you say, NO EXPERIENCED player would even consider a "cheap" Chinese horn. I could go through thousands of words of yada yada, but you won't see it my way. Your reasoning is flawed, and I won't try to convince you. And I refusae to get into a p*ssing contest with you. I hate to see others wet themselves.

          Reply To Post


        6. by Blotto Link
          (24 posts)

          6 years ago

          Re: Victory?

          You've proven my point that it is in your self-interest to put down the inexpensive saxophones down. Regardez-vous: "...You have purchased one of the many brands of Chinese made saxophones that are currently flooding the market. Generally speaking they are poorly assembled with inferior quality parts. Almost all of them come with a terrible mouthpiece. My suggestion is to get a Yamaha 4C mouthpiece and throw the Chinese made one away. Then take the sax to a reputable repair shop to see if they can put it in it's best adjustment possible. If you are lucky it will play well enough in tune to get by for the one or two years the instrument will last before needing more repairs than it is worth...." Okay, my friend, so tell me, what are the striking structural and design flaws of the Victory? And the Venus? Can you say anything about the Paul Mauriat saxophone? While you're at it, give us your opinion of the Taiwanese instruments which are ALSO flooding the market ?

          Reply To Post


        7. by JBTSAX
          (364 posts)

          6 years ago

          Re: Victory?

          The bottom line is: no accomplished player would buy and play a bottom line Chinese made saxophone that cost under $200 whether they have played for 40 years or not. I'm still waiting for you to post some facts to support the statement you wrote in your first post: "I own an Victory saxophone. It is manafactured by the same company that manafactures some of the better known and more respected names in the industry." (By the way, the word is MANUFACTURED). Either answer the question or say I don't know. Stop trying to B.S. everyone and divert attention by changing the subject to Taiwanese instruments

          Reply To Post


      2. by Parentofnewsaxplayer
        (5 posts)

        6 years ago

        Re: Victory?

        I really appreciate your comments. Thanks so much for the info. Interesting comment - I haven't seen a Victory on the used market. Thanks again.

        Reply To Post


      3. by cuber
        (653 posts)

        6 years ago

        Re: Victory?

        jb- do you ever talk with someone and not get in an argument? just kidding. Im not denying the FACT that some makers make their horns better than other makers, but isnt it all kinda up to the player? if they want to stick themselves with a horn that makes some things extreamly hard, thats their choice

        Reply To Post


      4. by JBTSAX
        (364 posts)

        6 years ago

        Re: Victory?

        As a music educator for 32 years who had to deal with these bottom of the barrel instruments in my classroom the last 5 or 6 years of my career, my concern was to give the original poster the benefit of my experience. No one should be given a sax that the pads don't seal the toneholes, the corks fall off, the springs come out, the keys bend too easily, and when the sax does play high G is 30 cents sharper than low G on the tuner. If an adult wants to buy one of these "throwaway" instruments to goof around with that's fine. But, I don't think it is fair to put one in the hands of a student just starting out who might have the potential to love the sax and become an accomplished player IF he/she has a POSITIVE EXPERIENCE the first year. A poorly made sax that can't possibly stay in adjustment and plays badly out of tune will almost guarantee a negative experience causing the student to drop out of band. I have seen this first hand time and time again. I'm not arguing, just making my case. If you can't tell---I take this subject very seriously, because I have seen and continue to see the harm to music education done by these poorly made instruments. John

        Reply To Post


      5. by Blotto Link
        (24 posts)

        6 years ago

        Re: Victory?

        I thought that you were a technician. Now you're a teacher. Which are you? Your description of what a first year player should NOT have to experience is what NO musician should have to experience EVER. The insinuation is that if you don't endorse it, it's not good. You've thrown another qualification into the mix. Before, it was "no experienced player would use such an instrument". Now it's "no accomplished player..." What do you want? References, a discography, and the name and telephone of my employers? I don't think anything would satisfy you. People who cannot accept the opinions and experiences of others will, at some point, see the error of their ways. Like the saying goes: "Minds are like parachutes. They work only when they're open." Can you say SPLAT? One thing that I can say is that no experienced band teacher would make much of a kid's horn, especially if his parents can barely afford one. Where do you teach, Exeter? And who is your band's audience? The queen of England? President Bush? Visiting foreign dignitaries, members of the Future Music Leaders of America? You say that you wanted to give the OP the benefit of your experience. Update me, my friend. Educate me. Tell me your experiences with the Victory or the Venus, or the Jupiter, or the Cecilio. For that matter, update me on the Mk VI. Maybe a Keilwerth. Or a Paul mauriat. Maybe post some pictures while you're at it. Give me gory details. Yeah, I see that you're serious about the subject. Perhaps over-excitable is a better word. In a perfect world, every saxophonist would play a well-tempered/regulated MkVI. It isn't a perfect world, so we must put up with certain realities, even though they contradict our ideals. Just like I have to put up with your opinionated intolerance.

        Reply To Post


      6. by Blotto Link
        (24 posts)

        6 years ago

        Re: Victory?

        Aw let him bust a vein. maybe it'll slow him down a little and help him see more clearly.

        Reply To Post


      7. by JBTSAX
        (364 posts)

        6 years ago

        Re: Victory?

        Splat.

        Reply To Post


      8. by Blotto Link
        (24 posts)

        6 years ago

        Re: Victory?

        Yes. I thought you could.

        Reply To Post


      9. by Blotto Link
        (24 posts)

        6 years ago

        Re: Victory?

        Make that FMEA: Future Music Educators of America. My bad.

        Reply To Post


      10. by cuber
        (653 posts)

        6 years ago

        Re: Victory?

        why do i have to play a mkVI in a perfect world? in a perfect world, id have a super 20, 6/10/12 m, The martin alto/tenor/bari, ect... since everybody is different, the perfect horn for everybody is different. saying "Horn xyz is the perfect horn for everybody hands down" is WORNG

        Reply To Post


      11. by JBTSAX
        (364 posts)

        6 years ago

        Re: Victory?

        I find it odd indeed that a player with 42 years of experience who has played over 200 different instrument as you have Blotto doesn't own anything better than a cheap Chinese made saxophone to play on. Can you explain that to me? Also why don't you fill out your profile as I have so people who read your posts can tell what experience you have? If you would like to send your Victory sax to me, I would be happy to do a bench analysis of it free of charge. Of course I wouldn't fix what's wrong with it, but I would be happy to make you a detailed list of its defects as I have done with other brands of Chinese saxophones in the same price range. John

        Reply To Post


      12. by Blotto Link
        (24 posts)

        6 years ago

        Re: Victory?

        Everything has to be spelled out for you, huh? I have owned and played many many saxophones. Presently, I ALSO own a Selmer MkVI tenor and alto, an SBA tenor, A Jupiter 787tenor, A Jupiter 547 GL soprano saxophone, a Yanagisawa soprano saxophone, a Fox 400 oboe, and a Paris St. Louis clarinet. I also own a Jupiter clarinet (you know, one of those cheapo Taiwanese jobs that the expert techs won't touch). Why should I send you my Victory saxophone so that you can do a premature autopsy on it? You've already done enough work on Victory Saxes to have a strong opinion of them. Why not share with me all that you've learned about them. I've got mine right at my side, ready to confirm or debunk your evaluation. Wait. I see that you've begun to hedge. You claim to have made lists of OTHER saxophones in the same price range. It's interesting that you don't mention Victory. How about a Venus? How about the Jupiters? They're Taiwanese, but they're cheap.

        Reply To Post


      13. by JBTSAX
        (364 posts)

        6 years ago

        Re: Victory?

        What makes you think that your $200 Chinese made Victory is any different than all the other brands in that price range? -Have you checked how level the toneholes are? -What about the fit of the hinge tube keys? Is there side to side wobble? -What shape and style are the pivot screws.? Does the key bind when they are snugly tightened? -Is the key metal too soft so that the keys bend and easily go out of adjustment? -Do the key corks and felts come off to the touch due to the poor quality adhesive? -Is the cork at adjustment linkages too "squshy" to keep good regulation? -Are the springs poor quality steel and loose in their posts. -Is there adequate glue in the key cups to hold and float the pad? -Are there thick cardboard shims in any of the key cups to compensate for the poorly designed key? -Are there burrs on the edges of the toneholes that cut the pads? -Are the plastic key buttons securely in their holders? -Are the pads made with a quality leather or do they rip with the slightest scratch of a fingernail? -Are the octaves above low D, G, and A in tune? These are problems that I have found on every Chinese made saxophone that has come across my bench in the price range of your Victory. If you don't have the skills yourself to check these things, I suggest you take it to your favorite tech for a professional analysis. I'm still waiting to know the name of the company and the brands mentioned in your first post. "I own an Victory saxophone. It is manafactured by the same company that manafactures some of the better known and more respected names in the industry." Please don't confuse the issue at hand by introducing Taiwanese saxophones. There are several brands that are outstanding including Mauriet and Cannonball to name a few, but they are in a different price range entirely than your bottom of the line Victory made in mainland China.

        Reply To Post


      14. by Blotto Link
        (24 posts)

        6 years ago

        Re: Victory?

        None of those problems exist on my Victory saxophone, though I remember having many problems with my MkVI that I bought in the early'70's. I can't tell you anything about shims behind the pads on Victory saxophones. That's not usually something one sees on a new saxophone. That's a trick of the technician's trade. It's used when the correct thickness of pad isn't available. jbst, I am sorry, but I can't reveal the info you request re: manufacturers and other brands. You're too far down the food chain for me to trust you with that information. Besides, if you were really in-the-know, you'd already have that information. Actually, the Victory has been a technician's shop. I brought it in as a PR call. (I know him very very well). When he saw the horn, he said, "What the $#@!! is this?" (The instrument bears no brand name). He did the usual scrutinizing, looking for serial numbers, place of origin, etc.. Then he said, Oh this is is one of those cheap pieces of Chinese c**p, right?" He put his bench mouthpiece on it and played several scales, then put his own mouthpiece on it and played some more. After about ten minutes, he asked, "Seriously, what is this? This is pretty good." I asked him to check it out to tell me what he thought. The only thing that he didn't like about it was the fact that the Bb spatula key was a bit of a reach. I agreed. I left it with him to make a modification. When I returned to pick it up, he wanted to know the brand and manufacturer. I didn't tell him until the next time I made a sales call. He didn't recognize the manufacturer (no westerner would, anyway) but he DID recognize the brand names under which is is distributed. Like you, he would not believe it. Five years ago, I heard the same sort of jibber jabber about Taiwanese saxes. Very few saxophonists except those who owned one would even consider the possibility that a non-western instrument could play as well as a western-made big four. Now that western brands are largely Taiwanese-made, the racket has died down over Taiwanese exports. Now that China has moved into the market, scores of 'experts' hold a negative opinion of Chinese-made saxophones which they have no right to express --- solely because none of them have even SEEN a Chinese saxophone (at least, to their knowledge). Most of those techs who have seen a Chinese-made saxophone, see not the results of poor workmanship, but the results of negligence on the part of little Tommy who didn't properly close (and lock) his case or who left his sax on the stadium bleachers only to return to find that his instrument was kicked down eight concrete steps. Why aren't you teaching at 8:30 AM?

        Reply To Post


      15. by cuber
        (653 posts)

        6 years ago

        Re: Victory?

        i think its safe to say there are still many horns id take in a heartbeat over most Taiwanese horns. Why is it a secret who makes the horn? all that implies is that you are hiding something

        Reply To Post


      16. by Blotto Link
        (24 posts)

        6 years ago

        Re: Victory?

        Yes. I can tell no one. If I tell you, I'll have to cut your tongue out afterward. Do you have any idea how many saxophone manufacturers there are in China? Take a guess.

        Reply To Post


      17. by JBTSAX
        (364 posts)

        6 years ago

        Re: Victory?

        Blotto, You can write more and say less than anyone I've ever had a discussion with on a forum. The saying: "If you can't dazzle them with brilliance, baffle them with bull shit" was created with you in mind. It's obvious that "you don't know what you don't know" about instrument construction. I've tried to teach you something but....well you know the teach a pig to sing story. I'm done, now you can have the last word. By the way if you bothered to read my profile you would see that I'm a retired music teacher now into my second career as a professional woodwinds repair tech. John

        Reply To Post


      18. by Blotto Link
        (24 posts)

        6 years ago

        Re: Victory?

        I'm going to ask you to please delete your post. I don't care for your language. Has anyone noticed that this guy goes postal a lot? The personal attacks just aren't called for. Are the moderators here? Or are you the moderator, jbts?

        Reply To Post


      19. by cuber
        (653 posts)

        6 years ago

        Re: Victory?

        hes not the one making personal threats, blotto. what would be the point in cutting out my tounge? i can still write

        Reply To Post


      20. by azurealto
        (79 posts)

        6 years ago

        Re: Victory?

        i want to know just what jbtsax does for a living. I have know idea, and would like neutral response. (not chooseing sides)

        Reply To Post


      21. by Blotto Link
        (24 posts)

        6 years ago

        Re: Victory?

        He works for the Postal Service. In his spare time, he works at a "whinery". I think he took a break from work to get his tone holes leveled.

        Reply To Post


      22. by Blotto Link
        (24 posts)

        6 years ago

        Re: Victory?

        It wasn't meant as a threat, cuber. You've probably never heard the line, "I could tell you, but I'd have to kill you afterward." You and batsax need to get out more.

        Reply To Post


      23. by rkhanso
        (1 post)

        6 years ago

        Re: Victory?

        I just bought one of these Victory "saxophones" off of ebay - brand new - from National Music Supply. It is unplayable. I haven't run the light rope down it yet, but it's leaking badly someplace. The tuning seems to be way off from bottom to top, but I can't tell for sure since it really doesn't play. The neck cork is falling off and appears to never have been installed correctly. It also smells really bad, like it's been sitting around for a long time. Actually, I bought a microscope off ebay a couple years ago and remember the same "Made in China" smell - it actually smells exactly the same as this "sax" The case is OK, but I wanted a sax, not a case. Anyway, I would not recommend buying a Victory, or any cheap Chinese saxophone - other than the Kessler saxes - at least you get a reputable company standing behind the Kessler brand saxes they sell. I'm 43 yrs old, have played saxophone (not professional) since elementary school. Remember what your mother said: You usually get what you pay for. (Sorry mom, I forgot)

        Reply To Post