Hi, also I am new to this forum and would love to draw upon the wealth of knowledge the members are providing. Since I am in a quite specific situation I unfortunately cannot easily link into an existing discussion for seeking advice on buying a new Alto-Sax. This is my situation: stage: “advanced beginner”, learning on a $200 made-in-China Alto; living constantly in tropical developing countries and have thus no chance to play-test any sax, apart from what can be done in the shop on the spot; have slight preference for latino and light modern jazz. Can spend up to $4000 for a new sax.
What am I looking for? A “tropical proof” Alto-Sax that can stand heat, high humidity, and especially the changes from air-conditioned rooms to outside conditions. Though I don't intend to go over it with a steam roller, it should be durable, standing the occasional kicks from my little son, the occasional sand-corns from wind at the beach (or anywhere else), and the occasional raindrop from a surprise rainfall. Considering all that, it should be easy to repair, even in a developing country (sending it in to the US or Europe would be quite expensive, cumbersome and time consuming). Having said that, it should also be very light.
After these rather unusual, awkward essentials, here the “normal” points: Easy to play every note at every volume without too much struggle. The ability to play loud is not too important (I usually play rather soft). It should have good ergonomics and a warm, full, rather darker sound.
What I've read so far, generally a Selmer, Yamaha, or Keilwerth might fit that description, but I am not at all sure about it. Does anybody have a good recommendation, maybe from own practical experience. Please including recommendations for the mouthpiece, and potentially even the brand of the reed.
Thanks a lot!