New Geneva Mentor Cornet

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by DS2014, Apr 17, 2015.

  1. DS2014

    DS2014 Active Member

    Just read the advert for the new range of Geneva instruments over on 4BR. It's supposed to be a transitory cornet option between the student/intermediate range of instruments and the professional range. But at £1,295 it seems a rather expensive transitory step: a brand new JP371 cornet can be had for less than £900, and pristine 2nd-hand Xenos and Sovs go regularly for around £1,100 on eBay. I am sure they have done their own research, but I just don't think there's a very big market for this additional level of instrument.

    To my mind, the three levels we currently have (beginner/student (approx. £300), student/intermediate (approx. £800), and professional (approx. £1,800)) cover all the bases. I am not convinced that a player (or, more likely in this case, the parent of a player) who is looking to progress from the intermediate level of cornet will want to spend £1,300 on an instrument that they are going to want to exchange in a very short space of time. Surely, a player who is knowledgeable and committed/serious enough to want to progress from an £800 instrument is going to want to go the full hog and move onto the Sov, Neo, or Prestige cornet.

    I wish the best of luck to Geneva because they are trying to break the Yamaha/Besson duopoly in many areas of brass banding, but I don't think this is the way. Personally, I think the Geneva Symphony range would be a more attractive option if they undercut Yamaha/Besson by 20% instead of trying to go toe to toe with them.

    Any thoughts?
  2. Cornet Nev.

    Cornet Nev. Member

    I personally tend to agree with you on the viability of such an instrument at that price. As you say, second hand pro models sell at around that price or even less, so possibly a bad idea for Geneva.
    As a different viewpoint, a lot does actually depend though on the actual quality, playability etc as well. If for example it plays and sounds as good as one of the high end pro instruments, and is very well constructed, it may well be a good cheaper way into having an instrument of that quality. However if none of that applies it seems a waste of time to me.
  3. 2nd tenor

    2nd tenor Well-Known Member

    Yamaha/Besson do seem to have a duopoly in terms of supplying a full range (across the band) of high quality instruments but other suppliers are available for Cornets (see: &

    My belief is that most players do not play any better on instruments of the highest quality than they do on instruments of good quality, and that they like to have something shining and new. Therefore Geneva might be on to something: affordable, new / looks good, plays sufficiently well.
    Last edited: Apr 19, 2015
  4. DS2014

    DS2014 Active Member

    Thanks for the links, but you won't find many Getzen, John Packer, or Smith-Watkins cornets knocking about compared to the number of Besson and Yamaha. Anyway, time will tell whether or not Geneva have got it right. It'll be interesting to see how many go for a new transition cornet rather than a second hand pro model that'll last them a lifetime. I know that I'd go for the latter.... I'd also love to try that Getzen Custom...valves are supposed to be sublime, and the laquer version looks fab