New Cornet?


New Member
Hi, I currently play on a Besson Sovereign Cornet that I loan from a band. I have been looking into getting a new one, A: so that it is mine; and B: because it is old (not that I disagree with the fact that older instruments can have a nice tone), from the time when Besson 'threw' the cornets together ass a result of bands getting lottery funding. I use a 4B/2B mouthpiece and have previously played a Besson 600, which is what I own. Triggers are necessary though. If anyone can recommend a suitable new cornet, (preferably with a location to buy) it would be much appreciated.
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Martin G

New Member
Go and try several before you buy. Where depends on your location, Phil Parker London, Rosehill Beaconsfield are my preferences. I have a Bach cornet which is lovely to play and has served me well for 25 years, I had a few upgrades done, re-plated (plating blows off in the wind on a bach) added triggers, but its a git to get water out. I do fancy the Besson Prestige (think thats what its called) Like the idea of trigger on main slide and great sound.


Active Member
Besson have advertised a new Sovereign with a trigger on main slide. Not sure what the RRP will be and I'm not sure what the difference will be between the Sov and Prestige, other than gold accents, but that surely can't be the only difference.

At the moment I am lusting after a Getzen 3850. Everyone raves about Getzen valves, and it comes in at about £500 cheaper than a Sov or Neo.


Well-Known Member
There are a lot of very good cornets these days - there are also lots of instruments marketed as "professional" that don't come near measuring up to the best.

The advice to play them before you buy is good advice - get to somewhere you can try as many as possible and compare.

I'll add Smith-Watkins and Eclipse to the list. They're not as common, but these are the two best I've played (I play mostly Sop, but I use my SW when I play Bb, if I used the Bb more I'd consider switching it for an Eclipse, but I can't justify it right now).


We are evaluating at moment and eclipse are very nice and the guys there are very helpful. Otherwise. Doesn't need to be new look for old 928 Sov.
Not sure what's in stock but worth trip to ProZone for used instruments.


Active Member
Auditioning a new cornet is very difficult because you may not feel the same about it after playing it for a few hours in a rehearsal. I have owned Sovereign 928, Bach 184, Wedgwood, Yamaha Maestro and played on a few others over the years. All had their own idiosyncrasies with good and bad points. I think for general use the 928 Sovereign is hard to beat. It has just enough tone, just enough projection and is just big enough to feel open. I tried a Geneva a while ago and found it to be easy to play with good valves, but was different in tone to what I was used to with the Sovereign. If I were buying a cornet today I would be looking at the Yamaha Neo, Sovereign and possibly the Prestige. Going with a smaller independent maker is fine, but might cause you problems later on if nobody else has one (a bit like the Bach for trumpets thing). If you fancy a smaller cornet then the Bach or even the Schilke are worth a look at, but given the exchange rate they are about as expensive as the Prestige now.