Mouthpieces for Besson Baritone

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by flugelboy2011, Nov 17, 2012.

  1. flugelboy2011

    flugelboy2011 New Member

    Hi, I am currently playing on a Denis Wick 6BS but are considering a change. Has anyone played on the SM6 or the SM Ultra 6 that could give me their thoughts or a comparison. Thanks
  2. halsasaurus

    halsasaurus Member

    I play a York 4 valve Baritone and moved from a 6BM (I assume that this is similar to a 6BS) to an Ultra SM6B and hated it at first. I really struggled to adjust but it has grown on me and I would not change back now. The Ultra is a great Baritone mouthpiece in all areas
    It gives great tone and range and also looks good.
    (I always thought that the 6BM looked like it was the wrong mouthpiece and too big for the instrument with the stem being too long)
    I also seem to have less tuning issues
  3. Hudd3

    Hudd3 New Member

    I use the SMB6 on my Besson.... nice mouthpiece but I am thinking of moving over to an Ultra to improve my sound. Has anyone tried the new ultra-x mouthpieces? Would have to change numbers to go this route and am unsure what this is likely to do?
  4. MoominDave

    MoominDave Well-Known Member

    "Improve sound" - what do you mean by that? Bigger? Warmer? More projection? More focussed? More comfortable in certain registers? More tonally flexible?

    If one is playing on a mouthpiece that is already a reasonable one (and there is nothing wrong with an SMB6 on baritone at all - or a 6BS either), then one should usually have a clear idea of what one hopes to achieve in advance. Of course, experimentation for the sake of it is fun, but be warned that it is a) expensive, b) addictive, and c) can, if (b) kicks in, damage your playing.

    The 6BM is the medium shank version of the 6BS, made to fit Imperial euphs - it wouldn't go in far enough on a baritone, and would I suspect cause tuning difficulties.

    I don't know whether the Ultra line have consistent playing characteristics between sizes or not. I tried swapping out the SM3 I usually use on euph for an Ultra 3, and really didn't like it - the sound was hard, and the notes felt less centred. YMMV, particularly as we are talking about different sizes and a different instrument.
  5. Hudd3

    Hudd3 New Member

    I am looking for a bigger sound and have recently moved from 2nd to 1st bari so looking for some help in the higher registers. Can't afford to swap often, so it won't be addictive! Do shops let you try mouthpieces do you know?... that would be the best answer but I suspect not.
  6. euphymike

    euphymike Member

    This is all subjective and alas unless you pop to the states where you can have a MP made to fit your ugly chops its all a compromise!
    If you havent got the cash then i suggest you get onto ebay and for £10 to 20 squids you can buy a 2nd Hand MP. Try it and if it isn't you stick it back on ebay. You bought so most likely someone else will? i did this for a couple of years and now only use a 350 series VB 3 with my besson 2056BE.
    It's tough at the top but the rest of the register is great. plenty for double forte. alas middle C# blows sharp and top F# blows a little flat. but according to some scribes most brass instruments leave the factory 20% out of tune?
    New ultra. I bought a Ultra 4 baritone MP when they first came out. blimey the price now compared to nine months ago, and its an improvment on the old SM stuff but it still cant beat my vincent bach 3. I had two and just sold one on ebay for £15.00.
    i just love the open sound that i cant find with any other MP. I had a VB4 but it was a completely different animal.
    if you want to try things alas you got to splash the cast. Or get sponsored!
    good luck
  7. Hudd3

    Hudd3 New Member

    I fear you have summed it up, trial and error.... and expense. Like your sponsorship idea...... anyone fancy sponsoring a baritone player?.... plays all the right notes but not necessarily in the right order
  8. euphymike

    euphymike Member

    Overall I probably spent 200 squids finding the MP that best suits me. However as ive now sold all the ones i bought i got back about 180. so i consider 20 well spent to try around ten MPs over a year/18 months period.
    the VB3 is use came from thomann germany at about 45 quid and the ultra came from steven meads internet site at about 57. I keep trying the ultra. it has its merits but the VB still more open sound so the Ultra may appear on ebay sometime next year after another couple of try outs.

    Sponsorship. the local kebab house here in Ilford should sponsor use the amount we spend there? However no too sure about the greek aversion to Brass bands.

    you obviously, like me had lesson from a relation of eric morecambes then?
  9. euphymike

    euphymike Member

    forgot to mention that when i got the 2056 it came with an Alliance MP. i didnt like the 'thin' sound i produced with. so that went on ebay straightaway! (in fact i only know one person who uses one and he was given it) i would rate the the Alliand about the same as the SM5/ultra in terms of thin tone and volume (noise).
    the VB3 is use has the largest hole ive ever seen going into the bore so you just know you can shift some air through it.
    I havent palyed my euphonium for a while now but i picked up a secondhand Stainless steel 'Loud' MP i think its the bes thing ever made to be honest. if the baritone one wasnt around 140 squids from the states id buy one.
  10. MoominDave

    MoominDave Well-Known Member

    Funny... The only VB 3 I've ever seen had an amazingly tiny throat - it was also drilled off-centre! Which illustrates one fact any seeker after mouthpiece truth must confront - VB's historical QA was distinctly dodgy. Wick weren't much better.

    Recent feedback is that both companies do better these days, however.
  11. euphymike

    euphymike Member

    Funny i had a car like that once? Off centre. And I was still allowed to drive it on the road.
    In my other previous life I was a pro bass player. I was once given a Brand new Fender jazz bass to try. The bass came with all sorts of tags on the headstock with one showing how many times it has been checked through their quality system. Needless to say that the thing wouldn't actually play. The neck was like a banana and the frets hadnt been set/ground down properly. (note. fender was an inventor/engineer not a business made so when the company got into trouble he sold it to CBS. quality then went down volume went up profits went up)
    So it happens all over the show.
    We have a QA system here at work. We can build a good operating theatre. But dont ask use to make a Mouthpiece!

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