Comparing difficulty of playing and tone in two different horns.

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by SmoothOperator, Jul 7, 2011.

  1. SmoothOperator

    SmoothOperator Mezzo Forte User

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    I have been playing my cornet with a Denis Wick mouthpiece for a while, since it was new, but now I went back to pick up my Studio with a Jet-tone mouthpiece. When I play I feel like the cornet is more difficult to play, and that every little mistake is obvious, compared to the studio which I feel like I can play both faster and with fewer blemishes, but my wife thinks the cornet sounds better :-? We both seem to agree that the cornet is louder, and has a bit darker tone especially in the low range. Has anyone had a similar experience, where a horn that was harder to play sounded better despite the mistakes?
     
  2. Dale Proctor

    Dale Proctor Utimate User

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    Sounds like you need a Jet-Tone cornet mouthpiece, too...
     
  3. SmoothOperator

    SmoothOperator Mezzo Forte User

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    Well, the conventional wisdom is cornet mouthpiece for a cornet, so I wouldn't be surprised if it were the mouthpiece that were making the difference in tone. Maybe a Deeper cup for the trumpet, hard to tell without doing the experiment. I am thinking the trumpet might also be a narrower bore. I have heard that players will go for the large bore just for the tone, despite the air requirements.

    But, mentally if you felt like it wasn't playing as well would believe that it could sound better?
     
  4. Dale Proctor

    Dale Proctor Utimate User

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    Well, you're really comparing apples and oranges here. Two different instruments, two radically different mouthpieces. All other things being equal (and they're not) you're finding the trumpet is easier to play because you are using a less demanding mouthpiece. Mouthpieces are a compromise - the richer the tone, the harder they are to play. The easier they are to play, the thinner the tone gets. Most people pick something in between to get an acceptable range and nice tone.

    I suspect you are probably more familiar with your trumpet and Jet-tone mouthpiece, so you can get around easier on it with fewer mistakes. Playing a big cornet mouthpiece like a Wick takes some getting used to, and your precision and range should get better over time.
     
  5. SmoothOperator

    SmoothOperator Mezzo Forte User

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    I intentionally set the trumpet aside for a couple months, to get familiar with the cornet mouthpiece, so I in part expected that it would be more difficult, not the other way around.
     
  6. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

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    I think this is almost always the circumstance.

    What we hear when playing is a combination of our facial vibrations finding their way directly to the ears, the leakage through the bell by its vibration and whatever happens to reflect from the wall.

    Instruments that are easy for us to hear (braces way back, thin bell, hard tempered bell) make us think that they are easier to play - more feedback. The problem is that what reflects back to the player is gone for the audience.

    The other way around, when a horn is well braced, the bell less acoustically "leaky", we think that it is harder to play because the feedback is not as great.

    When we practice enough, we get used to whatever the horn does and reliability and accuracy increase. When we don't practice enough and perhaps switch between a leaky and a good projecting horn, we just succeed in confusing our face, ears and brain.
     

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