Prestige/York Eminence/Stirling Virtuoso

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by matty1986, Oct 9, 2008.


Which euph in your mind?

  1. Besson Prestige

  2. Stirling Virtuoso

  3. York Eminence

  1. matty1986

    matty1986 Member

    Just wanted different peoples opinions.

    I'm looking to be buying a new euph soon and would be interested in people opinions on the above instruments.

    Obviously everyone is different in what they like/need but it'd be cool to see what ppl think. I've read loads of reviews about the three different euphs, but i'd like to hear from people playing them or who have tried them and not just proffesionals getting paid to endorse them.

    Thanks all, look forward to your personal reviews :)
  2. Aurora771

    Aurora771 Member

    Hey there, I am too considering buying myself my first euphonium. I'm used to sovereign bessons and I've only ever played a few notes on a prestige besson, so I really can't say which you should go for.

    I remember talking to a guy who worked at a York stall, and he said something about it being easier to get a nice sound out of the York euph, than a prestige. Which I dunno is a good thing.. you want to know your sound is good from you and not just your instrument.

    However, in looking for my first euph I have heavily considered buying a prestige... the only issue is getting enough money together. I'm comfortable and familiar with besson instruments, and I'm not likely to sway outside that.
  3. mclaugh

    mclaugh Member

  4. matty1986

    matty1986 Member

    Hiya, Thanks for the replies.

    I'm leaning towards the prestige at the moment, seems like the more robust and sturdier instrument with the best range and flexibility. Although looking round it seems like alot of the top players (Child Uncle, father AND son), Dave thornton, etc) and all turned to york as their instrument of choice.

    I spose i will just have to find someone that stocks them all and sit down and try them and see which sounds best for me and my particular style of playing!!
  5. brassneck

    brassneck Active Member

    - that seems a sensible thing to do. If you do decide on a particular brand and model, see if you can arrange one of the sales reps to have a few instruments available as each can have their own individual characteristics. A visit to a factory is the ideal choice, but with so many being built outside the UK, it's a tad more difficult to achieve.
  6. trumpetmike

    trumpetmike Active Member

    One of my ex-students has just purchased a new euphonium - he opted for a Willson, but played about 35 to check he was buying the one that worked with him on the end.
    That is, in my opinion, always the sensible option, to try before you buy - take the time to travel somewhere with a good selection (phone them to check that they will have a good stock for you to try) and get what works for you.
  7. foxyflug

    foxyflug Member

    My better half has just won the best instrumentalist award at both the British Open AND the Nationals at the RAH.........he plays a Sterling. Yes he does sell them (as well as Besson and York amongst others!) but when he was first introduced to the instrument he tried it out for 3 days then paid cash for it. He doesn't get paid to endorse it either and wouldn't play the instrument if he didn't think it was the best......why would he? He sells instruments for a living and has tried them all!

    Oh, and I'm SOOOOOO proud of him!

    Helen Williams
  8. matty1986

    matty1986 Member

    Hi Helen,

    I bought a Curtois of him a few years back, he played a solo spot for Conwy Town Banb in north wales while I was there.

    Congratulations Glyn on the Best Instrumentalist.

    I'll have to make an appointment to go see him and try some different ones out,,see what works ebst for me I think that's the best idea.
  9. foxyflug

    foxyflug Member


    Give Glyn a call 07976 628956 and arrange to try the euphs against one another.

    I've listened to several players try the Prestige v York v Sterling and can always tell the difference, even from a different room. And ofcourse, as mentioned by someone else earlier in this thread, with Sterling you also get the opportunity to visit the factory accompanied by Glyn to find the best instument for you. this rate I should be asking him for commission!

    Helen Williams
  10. Highams

    Highams Member

    Check out the new Willson Celebration 2960 now at Rosehill.

  11. BbBill

    BbBill Supporting Member

    I saw Mr Tuba (Mark Carter) with some custom Sterling Euphs at the Open and at Harrogate, the one with the frosted bell, with the rim cut-outs looked amazing!
  12. Aurora771

    Aurora771 Member

    Willie, you wouldn't be referring to the Euph that looked a little like a flowerpot? hehe. It certainly was an eye-opener. :biggrin:
  13. Highams

    Highams Member

  14. gcbtrom

    gcbtrom Member

    And certainly looks butt ugly too. IMO
  15. mclaugh

    mclaugh Member

    And 5 free lessons with either Glyn or Michael Howley. :wow
  16. PaddySears

    PaddySears Member

    I've just got a sterling and I can say it's fabulous..... For the first time ever in both the last two concerts I've played I've had people coming up to me to tell me how good I sounded. I'm very impressed.

    And if you're put off by the price tag Paul (the guy who makes them) is just launching a "budget" range which is the lighter weight version of the virtuoso and has no trigger... still came a close second when I was trying them out though! and don't forget you can also have it customised to the way that you want to!

    I've also had a blow on the rose euph (with the cut-outs) and it sounds bizzare to play as you hear vibrations from different parts of the bell creating its own doppler effect! Couldn't get used to that!
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2008
  17. matty1986

    matty1986 Member

    Well I have just got back from a very long drive from Manchester to rosehillmusic in Buckinhamshire.

    I went down there in the mind of buying a prestige, but when i got there and found out they had an eminence in stock i thought i would compare the two and see what i think. I played through some pieces on the prestige and then they brought me an eminence,,,and i couldn't put it down, it was amazing, the tone quality is superb, nice fat sound, easy to blow, trigger functionality is smooth and comfy, the valves are silent and the fastest i've ever used, and they're also light so it's not like your pussing down ten tons of metal. and it's looks nice aswell. A nice sturdy case similar to the prestige,

    Can you guess which one I walked out with, my advice,,if you haven't tried a york go try it, it's brilliant and i'm sure i'll have no regrets in the weeks to come,,but i'll keep you posted on that!!

    Thanks to everyone for all your input and advice.

    Also a big thanks to the people down at rosehillmusic, your help and patience is greatly appreciated!!!
  18. foxyflug

    foxyflug Member

    I'm gobsmacked that you travelled all that way (especially now you are a poor student!) when you could've tried the Eminence v Prestige v Sterling in the comfort of your own home or bandroom with advice, (and the possibility of some free future tuition and a continuing maintenance programme for your new instrument), from most probably the best euphonium player in the business today.

    Hey ho. Depends what you want out of a new instrument deal I guess!

    Helen Williams
  19. fsung

    fsung New Member

    Greetings from the far side of the Atlantic.

    I purchased a Sterling Virtuoso this past May after a year long search for a horn to replace my 1975-model large shank Besson New Standard. Along the way, I play-tested all four Bessons (967, 968, 2051, 2052), all three Yorks (4052, 3067, 3068), a Yamaha 642 and 842, Willson 2900BT and 2950, Miraphone 5000, and Meinl-Weston 551, as well as the Sterling. In the case of the 967 and 2052, I play-tested several examples of each (four 967s and three 2052s).

    For me, the Sterling was the winner by a wide margin. It strikes the perfect balance between openness and resistance and had the most even intonation across all registers. Responsiveness at all dynamic levels, flexibility, and slotting are outstanding, Additionally, it gives me that lush, dark, singing sound that comes very close to matching the sound in my head.

    My only complaint is that I couldn't get the free lessons with Glyn. :(

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