Interesting Link... Brass Compensating Systems Explained...

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by TheMusicMan, Mar 24, 2003.

  1. TheMusicMan

    TheMusicMan tMP Founder Staff Member


    Just read Charlie's earlier post here in this category - - and it prompted me to do a little reading on Compensating Systems. Here's an interesting link I found straight away with

    It doesn't cover 5-valve compensating systems but gives a good insight...

    Charlie - do you have any other interesting links that explain this in more detail...?
  2. Highams

    Highams Member

    Slough, Berkshire, England
    Most tuba euph / web pages carry an article the compensating system.
    It is certainly the ultimate in tuning devices.

    Back in the early years of brass instruments, all models, even cornets were offered with compensating valves !

    Another idea was the Enharmonic system, with 2 sets of slides for different ranges of the instruments. Obviously the enormous weight problem put anyone off wrestling with tubas of that design.

    The difference in intonation on small instruments of course, is minimal, enough just to have 1st. & 3rd. valve slide adjusters. By the time you get to euphoniums & tubas, the required amount of extra tubing needed to bring the notes down to pitch is about 4 inches !

    Adding additional valves is still popular, even on Picolo trumpets & flugel horns, but mostly on the American & Continental stlye of rotary valve tubas.

    Both Courtois & Couesnon of France offered a small C tuba (really a euphonium) with 6 piston valves.
  3. Straightmute

    Straightmute Active Member

    But the fourth valve on my picc is really to extend the range downwards, to allow the A picc to play D trumpet parts for example. As you infer, on an instrument so small any intonation problems should be solved with the lip!

    Is that the B sharp bass of the other thread???? (joke!) I've only ever seen large American C tubas.

  4. Highams

    Highams Member

    Slough, Berkshire, England
    Yes you are right about the Picc. trumpet, I was thinking more of the Flugel where 2 & 3 valved D & C#'s are really way off sometimes.

    Here is the pic. of the 6 valve euph. pitched in C;

    Cheers, Chas.
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