Saxophone Forum


by The_MarkVI
(80 posts)
9 years ago

a mouthpiece that i never have EVER heard a complaint about..

for all you legit musicians who are searching for a new classical mouthpiece, search no more vandoren optimum AL3 or 4 everyone who uses one (including one of my favorite classical sax guys, Otis Murphy) LOVES IT. so i decided to try it even though i was happy with my C*/rouseassu. good thing i did, bought it right on the spot. im not saying every should go buy one, but if you are searching for a new mouthpiece, just try the vandoren optimum.

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  1. by BuffetSax
    (21 posts)

    8 years ago

    Re: a mouthpiece that i never have EVER heard a complaint about..

    i personally like my meyer hard rubber and my R. Caravan

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    1. by Mlenox
      (36 posts)

      8 years ago

      Re: a mouthpiece that i never have EVER heard a complaint about..

      I used to play on a Caravan. It was good, but too dark for my taste. I might use it in a concert band setting or even an orchestra setting (how often does that happen) but I need some thing with more high overtones when playing solo lit. and concertos.

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  2. by danp
    (1 post)

    8 years ago

    Re: a mouthpiece that i never have EVER heard a complaint about..

    I agree the Optimum is a nice piece. I played on a Rousseau for about 5 years, been playing on an AL3 for about a month now. The Optimum's response, articulation, and altissimo is great. Intonation is quite good with this piece. Good luck with the piece.

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  3. by selmerfan
    (67 posts)

    8 years ago

    Re: a mouthpiece that i never have EVER heard a complaint about..

    I have heard one negative comment on it, and this coming from the Tenor Madness man himself. He hasn't had any customers that play this mouthpiece like the combination of it AND the Reference altos. I was tempted to try one on the Reference alto, he more or less fogged me off from trying it, not even the pros he works with have had any luck with this mouthpiece and horn combo, although I've had the Vandoren jazz pieces on my Reference and they're just fine. And no, I haven't tried the Optimum on my alto....yet, I waiting on a reface job on my C* before I give up on the C*. selmerfan

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    1. by Bibimbop
      (53 posts)

      8 years ago

      Re: a mouthpiece that i never have EVER heard a complaint about..

      Steve Stusek, professor at UNC-Greensboro plays on a reference with an AL4. I'd say it's worth a shot. It's all presonal preference.

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      1. by selmerfan
        (67 posts)

        8 years ago

        Re: a mouthpiece that i never have EVER heard a complaint about..

        If I'm not happy with a blueprinted C* then the Optimum is definitely my next step. selmerfan

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        1. by johnsonfromwisconsin
          (767 posts)

          8 years ago

          Re: a mouthpiece that i never have EVER heard a complaint about..

          I play an optimum, I think it's pretty good.

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        2. by classysax91
          (7 posts)

          8 years ago

          Re: a mouthpiece that i never have EVER heard a complaint about..

          I love my optimum. Like, a lot.

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        3. by OANegrin
          (26 posts)

          8 years ago

          Re: a mouthpiece that i never have EVER heard a complaint about..

          Out of all AL3 and AL4 setups I've heard in recital and concerto performances, there are definitely very strong and very weak points I have observed. Tone, of course, is able to be beautifully shaped. Agility and polish of technique is available at the highest level. The big problem I have with the Vandoren Optimum mouthpiece both as a soloist and an audience member is the general lack of sound. One simply can't project over a band or orchestra (or a strong pianist for that matter) with this constricting setup, as far as I have heard in person (and I won't name names no matter how big) and found for myself. Just a serious observation from both sides. Angel

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