Archive for April, 2012

Correct me if I am wrong – but In New Zealand a lot of players tend to be involved in playing a variety of different musical styles.

What that means for a Brass player in general is that sticking to the ‘middle-of-the-road’ option for choosing your horn means you generally end up looking at a Bach, Yamaha or Schilke option. All 3 of these brands are know for  producing professional horns that are in gig bags all over the globe.  It’s safe to go for a more commercial style horns as the sound is generally consistent and there are less inherent ‘quirks’ if you stick with them.

Out of those brands lets dig a little deeper into them and look at what you are paying for them:

Yamaha – good options for all-round playing are more than likely the Yamaha Z series (8310Z) and the Xeno (8300 series and above) Horns. These are great horns and are well made.

But let’s look at some costs I found for these from online retailers:  8310Z  $4095.00 RRP (I am guessing street price is about 10% less than that – so $3600 ish), 8335 in lacquer is $4995.00 RRP (So around $4,500).

Bach – most common option would be the Bach Strad 180/37 $4299.00 in lacquer with standard tuning slide (Street price is just below $4K). If you want a reversed tuning slide setup it’s about $100 extra.

Schilke – B Series is still the classic choice $5299.00 (Guessing street price again is about 10% less). Let’s be fair that’s in silver plate – but still quite a bit of outlay.

I’m not against any of these brands – I have played them all in the past (I’ve literally played the entire range of Yamaha horns at the Super Store in Japan – and owned a 6310Z for over 10 years) – I am merely pointing out that there are options out there in the big wide world that are only just now being discovered!

This is the CarolBrass CTR-5000L-YST-SL Bb Trumpet. (The series is CTR-5000)

It’s going to cost you around $1300+ NZ at the time of writing  (Photographed option SL is approx NZ$300 more).

It’s a Lightweight Bb Trumpet that will blend with most other horns, sounds great and is built to last.

These also have Stainless Steel Valves – so will outlast any of the monel options and give you a better valve action.

On top of that they come a few options that frankly embarrass the competition:

  • Additional Main Tuning Slide (You Get 2 in the case – so you can choose which feel you like better). If you have ever looked into after market parts these usually cost around USD$170 alone
  • Lightweight Finger Buttons (You get a standard MOP set on the horn also) – A set of these are usually US$50+
  • Lightweight Valve Springs (Again you get to choose how you like you valve action)

So, you not only get a comparable quality horn, but you also get more options that some of the others for less than half the price?

Makes you think twice about splashing for the Big Brands I hope.

If you are looking to put a kit together you can probably get 2-3 horns for the same as one.

For example (all with Satin Lacquer Bell Finishes – that’s an extra $100 per horn)

Carol CTR-5000L-YST-SLB NZ $1395.00 – Bb Trumpet

Carol CFL-6200-GSS-SLB  NZ$2395.00 – Flugel

Total Price for 2 horns = $3790.00

Getting back to CTR-5000L horn specifically you can dial that horn in a variety of different ways should you wish(For an additional cost – contact us for details) – for example with the finish options:

P – Raw Polished Brass, L – Lacquer, SLB – Satin Lacquer Bell, SL – Satin Lacquer, S – Silver Plate – they also offer a Black Nickel Finish with Gold Trim or Silver Plate with Gold Trim.

You can also adjust the Bore Size – Medium Large, Large or Xtra Large.

You can adjust the Bell – Size (2 Sizes – available – Standard or Large)

And Lastly the Bell Material (Yellow Brass, Gold Brass, Red Brass or Phosphorous Bronze)

The reality is though it’s a great horn straight out of the box – no tweaking required.

So if you’re thinking about changing your horn with Lightweight, Cost Efficient, and Does the Business are your criteria –  give this horn a go!