Which Baritone has the Largest Bore

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by BrassyEuph, Jan 31, 2006.

  1. BrassyEuph

    BrassyEuph New Member

    I have recently moved from Euphonium to Baritone after 49 years. Anyone got sound advice as to which one I should buy please. Tried a medium bore but no good. I need the Largest available.
    Cheers all
  2. animal77

    animal77 New Member

    It's either sovereign or the Courtois (having 0.547" or 0.519-0.549" bores respectively). The Courtois also has the largest bell (9.84" cf 9.5" on sovereign). The maestro (4 valve) is much smaller with 0.504-0.531" bore and 8" bell.
  3. BeatTheSheep

    BeatTheSheep Member

    my band has a bass saxhorn in Bb. It looks like a euph but the same overall shape and sound as a bari and twice as loud. Unfortunately it's a besson prototype c.1900. I believe you can buy them new, because I saw a french brass band using them thinking they were baritones. No-one in this country uses them, they could be very useful.
  4. brassneck

    brassneck Active Member

    - Courtois sell them and the French seem to be the only country that still popularises them!
  5. PeterBale

    PeterBale Moderator Staff Member

    There are obviously to going to be major differences in moving onto baritone having played euph for so long, and I just wonder whether specifically looking for a wide-bore baritone is the best way to deal with it. The danger is that you could be trying to play it like a euph, albeit a slightly narrower bore one than usual, instead of working to develop a good baritone sound. Another factor, if you're having problems adjusting, could be the choice of mouthpiece, and maybe baritone players could advise you as to what they find works for them, particularly if they have also moved across from euph.
  6. Rob

    Rob Member

    I always find it funny when people talk about 'trying to play a baritone like a euphonium'. As the baritone is always going to be a smaller instrument than a euphonium it does, in my experience, ALWAYS sound different. Choose the instrument which is right for you, a mouthpiece that you are comfortable with and everything else will sort itself out - no use getting in a tizz over 0.3 of an inch etc. Tenor horns and baritones are both saxhorns, nobody would talk about trying to play a tenor horn like a baritone or vice versa (although of course the 4-valve baritone and euphonium have exactly the same range of notes). I would say enjoy your playing and don't get worked up about bore sizes etc. - the most important thing is playing on something you are comfortable with, which only comes with trying out various instruments. Just my thoughts.
  7. ari01

    ari01 Active Member

    funny how knobody wants to make a sop sound like a cornet!!
  8. DaveR

    DaveR Active Member

    That's a very good point. I've often found that euph players overblow on a baritone and really struggle as a consequence. Once they stop overblowing, most of the problems they were having often seem to go away.....
  9. Despot

    Despot Member

    Agreed, there is a tendency when you come from Euph to overblow, but you get over that. I've been in that position and it just takes time!

    Unless you've being trying a very old instrument or a really cheap student instrument, which can have unusually small bores (by today's standards), perhaps allow yourself time to adjust before you go looking for an instrument?
  10. ian perks

    ian perks Active Member

    As a Baritone player for a good number of years(30 ) i have always played on a Besson Soverign and just my opinion i find them very good
  11. scotchgirl

    scotchgirl Active Member

    The valves on Sovereigns are a pile of poo though...I have NEVER had a good set of valves on a Sovereign baritone...

    I am waiting (maybe in vain) for Yamaha to do something about producing a professional baritone with 3 valves instead of 4...then, at least I could have a valid choice, as I have heard that the curtois ones are no good either (especially for high stuff).

    I liked the old style of sovereigns (with the big bells) - they were cool...but really hard to find nowadays.
  12. SoloBaritone

    SoloBaritone Member

    Got to disagree with that! All the sov's I've had, have had really good valves. I love the sov I'm on now and the other one the band bought at the same time is fine as well.

  13. Steve

    Steve Active Member

    Gotta agree with Rob, biggest mistake out is trying to play a baritone like a euphonium.

    I found that the mouthpiece was the bigest problem for me and not the instrument itself. Trying to make a baritone sound lie a euphonium defeats the point of having them in the band, that being the main reason I dont like the 4 valve ones too much. 3 valve Sovereigns all the way for me :D
  14. Accidental

    Accidental Supporting Member

    I've swapped about between horn, euph and baritone, and for me playing baritone boils down to three things... its a horn, not a small tuba/euph; get the mouthpiece right; and hell's probably going to freeze over before any of the manufacturers come up with anything better than a (3 valve) Sovereign!! :roll:
  15. ian perks

    ian perks Active Member

    Well the first 3(2 of them been my own) i had valves were brilliant could not fault them.
    The last 2 one of which is my own(still got), the valves are a pile of you know what and the one i have got of the bands is the same even a bigger of of you know what: Just had them cleaned off(BANDS BARITONE) lapped etc 1st week in January great instrument came back valves TOPJOLLY 3 weeks on :( :( :( :( back to a pile of you know what.
    Having to oil and stip them down each week yet AGAIN:ranting2: with plenty of those words said when valves stick
  16. brasscrest

    brasscrest Active Member

    Sounds like your Sov valves have gone the way of the Besson brand - quality was slipping during the last few years, in my opinion. The new ownership might help - I've not heard anyone complain about valves on a Courtois instrument.
  17. Lauradoll

    Lauradoll Active Member

    Never had any problem with my Sovereign, had it 10 years now and the valves are fantastic. The one I have from my band has fab valves as well. I can safely say I've NEVER had a bad set of valves on a Sovereign baritone.
  18. Dave Euph

    Dave Euph Member

    Valves on sovs are patchy, but I've found the older instruments certainly do a better job. As for playing the thing, the best advice I can give is to get used to it. Baritones are different from euphs, and therefore will feel different to play, it may sound wrong when actually it sounds perfect (although the baritone is capable of a beautiful sound, it is all too often dismissed as second-best to euphoniums).
  19. My valves are great! I've got a besson sovereign 956, and I love it, the greatest ever made. I had a 955 (3valves) before, it was almost impossible to get the valves down and there was a lot of problems with the sound...

    It seemes to me that there is a lottery, to get good valves on the instruments...
  20. Baritonedeaf

    Baritonedeaf Member

    I have a 955 Sovereign (3 Valve) - about 15 years old - I have had it from new and have never had any problems with the valves.

    Sound is superb and it beats everything else i have ever tried...

    Would like to have a long go on a Courtois though I like the look... Catch 22 situation, not sure i would buy one without a lengthy test period. Not likely to play one over a period of time unless i buy one!

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