Before any alto saxophone player can start playing, a mouthpiece should be on the top of your bucket list. Having the most appropriate alto saxophone mouthpiece could help you create the warm jazzy sound that you want to produce when playing the instrument. Since such device could affect your performance, it is essential that you choose the best alto saxophone mouthpiece carefully.On this article, we are going to identify ten of the best alto saxophone mouthpieces in the market. Moreover, we will list down some of the features that you should look for in such device.
What to Look for in the Alto Saxophone Mouthpieces
As a smart buyer, one of the first things you need to do is to identify the salient features which these alto saxophone mouthpieces need to have. While it is true that each product comes with different characteristics, identifying the necessary elements could help you narrow down your choices by scraping off the products which did not pass the criteria. By doing so, you ensure yourself that you have chosen the quality product that could help you make your performance better. Here are two of the features that you have to consider when picking the best alto saxophone mouthpieces.
The Material Used
Alto saxophone mouthpieces are made from either hard rubber, plastic, or metal. Each of these materials creates distinct tones and musical qualities. Hard rubber materials can produce a soft and warm tone. Due to their musicality and flexibility, hard rubber is favored by jazz musicians. Plastic, on the other hand, is an essential material for beginning alto saxophone players. Metal mouthpieces will produce a brassy and sharp sound, making it a standard device used by marching band players.
The Size of the Chamber
Another essential feature that alto saxophone mouthpieces have is the chamber size. This refers to the hollowed cavity inside the mouthpiece. The size of the chamber could also affect the sound produced. Smaller chambers produce a sharp and bright sound. Larger chambers, on the other hand, create a dark and smooth sound.
The features which are mentioned above are just a few of the key elements that you should be taking into consideration upon purchasing an alto saxophone mouthpiece. By being able to acquaint yourself with such features, you could easily narrow your choices down to the one that will suit your inclination the most.
Best Alto Saxophone Mouthpieces
All Alto Saxophone Mouthpieces
1. Yamaha Alto Sax Mouthpiece 4C
The Yamaha Alto Sax Mouthpiece 4C is an ideal alto saxophone mouthpiece which is perfect for beginners. However, it could also be used by intermediate and professional alto saxophone players as well. By using this mouthpiece, users are able to obtain a balance, clear, and focused tone in any octave easily. Moreover, the sound produced is rich and precise. It also allows users to play the alto saxophone softly. Additionally, this 4C model creates a highly consistent quality making it an ideal gear to use.
2. Selmer S-80 C* Mouthpiece for Alto Saxophone
The Selmer S-80 C* Mouthpiece for Alto Saxophone is another excellent mouthpiece which you could consider for your alto saxophones. It consists of a square cross-section in the chamber, making it great for a “step-up” mouthpiece. It has a tip opening of 1.70, and a facing length of 22.00. This mouthpiece also helps produce a good and smooth sound quality. This alto saxophone mouthpiece works well for those who are still beginning in the field of saxophone-playing. But it could also work well for professionals.
3. Vandoren SM711 AL3 Optimum Series Alto Saxophone Mouthpiece
The Vandoren SM711 AL3 Optimum Series Alto Saxophone Mouthpiece consists of a medium long facing feature. With its exceptional roundness, this product is the ultimate classical mouthpiece. It has a tip opening of 152 (1/100mm), and it works best with Vandoren #2.5 to #4 Reeds. Saxophone players are guaranteed that this mouthpiece will help them produce a vibrant and terrific sound. Moreover, this mouthpiece helps create a warm, clear, strong, and bright tone. It is noted that it is easier to play low notes. It could also help produce clear notes as high as F#.
4. Yamaha YAC1287 5C Standard Alto Saxophone Mouthpiece
The Yamaha YAC1287 5C Standard Alto Saxophone Mouthpiece provides a rich and warm tone with a great variety of colors. In addition to this, the mouthpiece has excellent flexibility and response. Also, it is a smooth piece for the alto saxophone because it is able to produce nice low rumbling saxophone sounds with deep and tumbling jazzy notes. Due to its quality, this alto saxophone is ideal for beginners.
5. Vandoren SM812M A6 Medium Chamber V16 Alto Saxophone Mouthpiece
The Vandoren SM812M A6 Medium Chamber V16 Alto Saxophone Mouthpiece is one of the most played alto saxophone mouthpiece. It has a medium long facing feature with a tip opening of 196 (1/100 mm). It is able to produce a bright and warm jazzy sound, making it perfect for beginners and professionals alike. It has a great response as well as compatibility with the ligature. This mouthpiece works best when used with Vandoren #2.5 to #4 reeds.
6. J&D Hite H117 Premiere Alto Saxophone Mouthpiece
The J&D Hite H117 Premiere Alto Saxophone Mouthpiece offers a hard rubber quality at a good price. It produces a good jazzy sound, making it an ideal component to your instrument. It is also comfortable to produce sound using such mouthpiece. Due to its features, it is ideal for those who are still beginning to play an alto saxophone. However, it also works well when used by intermediate and professional players.
7. Meyer MR-402-6MM Rubber Alto Sax Mouthpiece
The Meyer MR-402-6MM Rubber Alto Sax Mouthpiece is a rubber alto saxophone mouthpiece with a tip opening of 0.076 inches. It has an excellent and clear response which range from very low notes all the way to altissimo. Blowing through this mouthpiece is easy, allowing users to produce a rich and full tonal quality. Such product comes with a ligature and a mouthpiece cap. Due to its features, this mouthpiece would also work well as a good addition to your instrument.
8. Vandoren SM602B A45 Jumbo JAVA Mouthpiece Alto Saxophone
The Vandoren SM602B A45 Jumbo JAVA Mouthpiece Alto Saxophone is a standard mouthpiece for those who are inclined to salsa, rock, and modern music. It has a tip opening of 220 (1/100 mm) and a medium long facing feature. It is designed with a small chamber with a very high baffle and a large bore. It is able to produce a powerful, aggressive tone with excellent projection, comparable to edgy metal mouthpieces. It works best with Vandoren #2 to #3.5 reeds.
9. Selmer BE402-31 Brilhart Ebolin Alto Saxophone Mouthpiece
The Selmer BE402-31 Brilhart Ebolin Alto Saxophone Mouthpiece is made of injection-molded plastic. It is able to produce a full resonant tone with an extraordinary carrying power. Additionally, the sound produced is smooth. The mouthpiece makes it possible to hit all the notes from the bottom to altissimo easily. Creating a vibrato is also easy to do. It is a good piece for slow tempo songs.
10. Meyer MR-402-5MM Rubber Alto Sax Mouthpiece
The Meyer MR-402-5MM Rubber Alto Sax Mouthpiece is a rubber alto saxophone mouthpiece with a tip opening of 0.071 inches. It has an excellent and clear response which range from very low notes all the way to altissimo. Blowing through this mouthpiece is easy, allowing users to produce a rich and full tonal quality. Such product comes with a ligature and a mouthpiece cap. Due to its features, this mouthpiece would work well for beginners to professionals.
To be able to pick the most appropriate alto saxophone mouthpiece, you should be acquainted with the different products by scrutinizing through their features. Since each of these alto saxophone mouthpieces has different benefits, the decision will still depend on personal preference. Ultimately, the alto saxophone mouthpiece that you will choose will eventually affect the delivery of your performance.