Sax reeds are a key part of the instrument because they are responsible for making the air vibrate, which is the way sounds are emitted from a saxophone. In truth, reed choice ultimately is a matter of individual taste or preference. However, there are a few tips that can be considered and kept in mind when shopping for them in order to get the best possible quality. The article below seeks to provide you with a few of those pointers.
First of all, if the music store will permit you to do so, always perform a physical assessment of the reed before buying it. After all, this part of the instrument is relatively expensive so you would want to make sure that you get the best one possible.
As you do your detailed search of the sax reeds, keep an eye out for any cracks or holes, as well as discoloration in the wood grain. You should not buy reeds with any of these characteristics. Also, look at the wood grain and make sure that it is not rough, is consistent in width or symmetrical. While a slight curve in the reed is generally acceptable, it should be limited.
The strength is another important consideration when purchasing a reed for your saxophone. Most people believe that as you progress in terms of your skill on the sax, so should you work up to the harder reeds. However, this is not always the case for everyone. The general rule of thumb is that the reed you choose should fit according to the mouthpiece on your saxophone. Mouthpieces with wide openings or shorter lays often work best with softer reeds. On the other hand, mouthpieces with narrower tip openings or longer facings can have tougher reeds.
Also keep in mind that a lot of the decision on how strong your reed should be depends on the type of music you play. Most classical players opt for harder or medium soft reeds. If you’re a beginner, however, it is always best to start with the softest reed available. sax.video
Lastly, as is with almost all products, choosing the right brand is also very important. Most professionals opt for sax reeds that are manufactured by Alexander Supoerials, Rico Plasticover, La Voz, Hemke, and Vandoren. All these brands are in the middle price range, where in truth, the highest quality reeds are often from.
Following the aforementioned tips should get you on the right track to picking the best reed possible for your saxophone. But do keep in mind that because, as mentioned earlier, reeds are highly a matter of personal preference, it might take a little bit of time and an equal amount of trial and error before you finally pick the one that works best for you.