Last updated: August 16, 2021

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We would like to welcome you to this new edition. Music is an art that has marked us all at some point in our lives and we know that like us you love it, so today we want to talk about one of the most famous instruments in the world, the saxophone. The saxophone is a very special instrument, not only because of its melody that transmits so much calm and sensuality, but also because it is indispensable for any jazz artist.

Without the saxophone we are more than sure that this precious musical genre would not be the same at all. Unbelievable, isn't it? In this article we not only want to tell you about each of the characteristics that make up the saxophone and that you may not know about, but we will also talk about the most popular and purchased saxophones on the market, because we know that when you buy a new product you need to have good points of comparison.




Summary

  • It is an instrument belonging to the family of wind instruments, they are mostly made of tin or brass. It was created by Adolphe Sax in the early 1840s and has since become an important part of the world of music. There are many types and it is a very popular instrument in jazz.
  • Among the wind instruments there are many variations, in the case of saxophones you will find soprano, tenor, baritone and alto saxophones, which differ in many aspects, such as price, difficulty of use, among others.
  • In addition to knowing the variations of this instrument, it is necessary to emphasize that there are many aspects that should be taken into account before acquiring it, such as brands, accessories that you need to acquire, among others.

The Best Saxophone: Our Picks

Buying Guide

It is of great importance that when buying an instrument as delicate as the saxophone you know perfectly the characteristics of the same, so that we feel much more comfortable with our choice, so we have prepared a guide with the information you need.

The saxophone is considered around the world to be one of the most important instruments in the jazz genre due to the special touch it brings to the songs. (Photo: Dmitriy Shironosov / 123rf.com)

What is the saxophone?

It is an instrument belonging to the family of wind instruments, mostly made of tin or brass. It was created by Adolphe Sax in the early 1840s and has since become an important part of the world of music. This instrument is usually associated with R&B and Jazz music.

Many people are unaware of the fact that the saxophone is an instrument that was created inspired by the clarinet, so they have almost the same characteristics, although the most notorious of them is its mouthpiece, which has a single reed, just like the clarinet. Of course, the big difference is in the sound.

What are its advantages?

The main advantage of the saxophone is the wonderful opportunity to create art. Music has become so fundamental around the world and instruments are such a big part of it that without them, there would be nothing like it.

So the saxophone is a window to the creation of art. Another great advantage of the saxophone is the fact that, being a wind instrument, there are enough variations to suit everyone's musical taste. So if you are thinking of buying a saxophone, you can be absolutely sure that there is one for you.

Advantages
  • They create music
  • They encourage creativity
  • Their melody conveys joy
  • They are easy to handle
  • Most are lightweight
Disadvantages
  • They take practice to learn to use
  • They can be expensive
  • They require maintenance
  • You need replacement parts
  • They are prone to rust

Soprano saxophone, tenor saxophone, baritone saxophone or alto saxophone - what should you pay attention to?

We all know the particular and even sensual sound of the saxophone, it is something unmistakable, however, you should know that there are different types of it, so if you are thinking of buying one, it is important that you find out what they are so you don't have any problems when you buy one.

  • Soprano saxophone: Soprano saxophones are tuned in B flat. This type of saxophone can have different shapes, however it is a difficult type of saxophone to learn to use for beginners, so it is not recommended for them, as learning the ideal embouchure takes quite a long time.
  • Tenor saxophone: These are an octave below the soprano. It is a fairly light saxophone, so it can be ideal for children or young people who have decided to start playing this beautiful instrument. It is delicate, so a lot of tact is needed in its use, as well as a good technique to be able to play it well.
  • Baritone saxophone: One of the most difficult types of saxophone to use, even more so for a beginner. This saxophone is quite popular in the jazz world, as it is in a low octave of the high E flat. It is mostly played seated because of its rather large and heavy size.
  • Alto saxophone: This type of saxophone is undoubtedly one of the most popular. They are tuned in E flat and due to their size they are highly recommended for beginners, as they are quite manageable. It is a model with a very loud and clear sound. They are recommended for children or young people who are just starting to use them.

Is the saxophone used in other cultures?

A curious fact about this marvellous instrument is that in other cultures you can find them, only that they are made with other materials. We believe it is important for you to know this aspect of what will be your new companion during your musical career, as it will give you a better vision of it. In cultures, such as the Hawaiian, there are saxophones made of bamboo, which can also be called Andean Saxophone.

These have a very different sound, but are still a saxophone. The sweet melody characteristic of the Hawaiian culture is made possible by this wonderful saxophone, which many learn to play from a very young age. A curious fact about these saxophones is that they can have both curved and straight shapes. It is an extremely beautiful handicraft and perfect for many as the beautiful melody it emits can transmit peace to anyone who has the opportunity to listen to it.

Other cultures that have made the bamboo saxophone their own is the Colombian one; we all know the beautiful handicrafts that this South American country offers us and the bamboo saxophone could not be left behind; even though it is not part of their traditional music, it is quite popular in the country.

Experts claim that playing an instrument can increase endorphin levels in people. (Photo: Burmakin Andrey / Site: 123rf.com)

Buying criteria: factors that allow you to compare and rate different saxophone models

Having the opportunity to create music is something that we all love, however, when you buy an instrument such as a saxophone you must take into account that there are many aspects to consider, so that when you make your purchase it is completely satisfactory.

  • Brands
  • Mouthpiece
  • Accessories
  • Durability
  • Warranty

Brands

A quality product always comes hand in hand with the best brands and in the case of the saxophone, you should know that there is a variety of them that is necessary to know, because at the time of your purchase can be of great help so that you have the best points of comparison when making your choice:

  • Yamaha: Undoubtedly one of the most popular and famous brands in the world of musical instruments. Yamaha saxophones will not disappoint you at any time, as their manufacturers have ensured that the level of quality is absolutely perfect. A brand recommended for professionals.
  • Yanagisawa: This excellent brand has dazzled us with the excellence of quality that their products offer and of course, with regard to saxophone manufacturing they could not be left behind, since they are everything you are looking for. If you are a professional and want quality in your instruments, this could be the ideal brand.
  • Selmer: Another brand that you should definitely take into account is this one, since it has launched different models of saxophones that have given a lot to talk about, because its design is completely neat and ideal for those who want to start in the world of music with a saxophone.
  • Jupiter: Finally we have this brand that although it can provide you with a good product, it will not give you the quality you are looking for, as Jupiter saxophones are generally recommended for beginner instrumentalists. Similarly, if you are looking for something affordable, this is the brand for you.

Mouthpiece

It is very important that when you purchase your saxophone you evaluate the type of mouthpiece, as this can make a huge difference to your performance. Once you have learned to use it, you may need other mouthpieces, so you need to know how to choose the right one:

  • Material: The first type of mouthpiece you will find is the hard plastic one; this is made most of the time with the fineness that is required for an instrument like the saxophone. It is an ideal mouthpiece for playing softer tunes, as the frequency level it provides is not intense. Another type of material is ebonite, which is the most popular in the saxophone world. It is a type of material made by vulcanising rubber. It is extremely resistant and is recommended for playing all kinds of tunes, so we could call it a standard mouthpiece.
  • Aperture: The aperture of your mouthpiece is what will help you to evaluate the frequency levels of the melody you will emit with your saxophone. This really depends a lot on the type of melody you are going to play, but it is an important aspect to take into account. If you have any doubts about your mouthpiece openings when you make your purchase, you can always ask the person in charge or evaluate which songs you will be playing frequently with your instrument.

Accessories

Instrument accessories can make your playing experience much more enjoyable, so today we'll be talking about which ones we think are essential to purchase to complement your purchase:

  • Case: These can be made of fabric or wood, depending on the level of care you take of your instrument; both are a good option, of course, for travelling the wooden one is better. The case will keep your saxophone safe without the risk of it losing a piece.
  • Tuner: Even though they are usually tuned before a performance, it is never a bad idea to get a pocket tuner to make sure everything is in order on your saxophone before the big show.
  • Saxophone strap: These straps can be made of leather or cloth. The former is always the best option if you are looking for durability. It is important to get one if you will be using a heavy saxophone, as it will lighten the weight a lot more, making it easier to handle.

Durability

Knowing which are the most popular brands of saxophones is not enough if you want a saxophone that you can rely on. It is of great importance that you evaluate which aspects make a saxophone a durable instrument and which do not:

  • If when you play your saxophone you feel that there is a sound of metal clashing against metal, you can discard your purchase, since it is possible that it is not well made, so it will be a waste of money.
  • During the sound test you should check that all the notes of the saxophone are completely even. If you are a beginner, it is recommended to ask for help from a professional, either a teacher or a veteran saxophone player.
  • Evaluate the appearance of your saxophone. If you notice that the keys are aligned as they should be, you can be sure that your saxophone is made with excellent quality, so you can buy it with confidence. https://www.instagram.com/p/B0QeMjKhbt4/

Warranty

Most instruments have a warranty between 6 or 12 months after purchase, with saxophones there is also this type of warranty, so before making your purchase we believe it is pertinent that you check if your saxophone has it. The guarantee offered by the music shops at the moment of purchasing our saxophone has different variations, since, if it is a damage in the instrument caused by you, the shop can repair it, or if it comes with factory damage there is an exchange of the product or a full refund of your money.

(Featured image photo: blueskyimage / 123rf.com)

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