differences between C trumpets and Bb trumpets(i have many questions)

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by Pedrotrumpeter, Apr 5, 2013.

  1. Richard Oliver

    Richard Oliver Forte User

    Jul 18, 2006
    Casper, WY
    When the C no longer as a "duck quacking" quality, you're on your way. A fellow on YouTube has recorded most of the Brandt Etudes. He uses a C often. Good for the ears.

    Here's an even nicer treat, 2 C's: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f48F5i3cdTc
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2013
  2. EdMann

    EdMann Mezzo Forte User

    Sep 20, 2007
    Los Angeles
    I don't know who Jedi is, but his moniker includes the words "confusion." Either way, a C trumpet has less tubing. It's shorter.

  3. JediYoda

    JediYoda Mezzo Piano User

    Sep 25, 2010
    State of Confusion
    If you would like we can get into the technical aspect of transposing ,,matter little to me...except for the fact that you of all people should know that I am correct....after all you supposedly have a doctorate in some sort of music.......

    Music Theory / Transposition

    That is true...but that still doesn`t have anything to do with the fact that when transposing from music written for a C instrument to a Bb instrument you have to transpose up a step....

    If you are in the key of C you need to transpose up one full step for a Bb instrument which would be the key of D....and so on and so


    No confusion here.....sorry charlie!!

    The only one who is confused would appear to be you.....
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2013
  4. veery715

    veery715 Utimate User

    Mar 6, 2007
    Ithaca NY
    You transpose UP a step because the Bb trumpet is pitched a step LOWER. You are not arguing you are agreeing. But EARLIER, when you claimed the Bb trumpet to be pitched a step HIGHER, you were mistaken. The Bb trumpet is longer than a C trumpet, and as a result it has a LOWER pitched fundamental than the C trumpet. When you play a "C" on BB trumpet (the note written on the first ledger line below the staff on your Bb trumpet music) the pitch you get is the same as the first black key to the left of the middle C on the piano. Thus, when you play a part written in CONCERT C, you transpose UP that step in order to get to the concert C scale - or the key of D for the Bb horn you are playing. The Bb trumpet is pitched LOWER, so you transpose HIGHER.
  5. Phil986

    Phil986 Forte User

    Nov 16, 2009
    Near Portland, OR.
    I don' want to put fuel on the fire, but, to JediYoda and to those who say he's confused, do you realize that, in these sentences, he says exactly the same thing as what Veery is saying? So, in fact, the two are in total agreement. Veery's formulation is just a little clearer IMO.

    For example, in the first sentence, JY should have specified: "needs to be transposed up one step by the Bb trumpet player", as conversations about transposition can be way more confusing than just doing it. I have found talk about transposition to be a real exercise in the use of language.

    The second sentence should have been something like: "A Bb trumpet music is written a step higher than a C trumpet music in order to sound the same."

    Still, I don't see why anyone should jump on the conclusion that JY is confused or why he should get all mad about a perceived disagreement that doesn't exist. Why internet conversations so quickly flare up always baffles me. The reason why some seemed to believe JediYoda was confused was simply that the way he wrote wasn't entirely clear. Whoever has never done that can throw the first stone.

    Furthermore, I have yet to read any claim from a TM contributors that they have a "PhD in music or something." I do recall VB once mentioning some rather grueling grad school level piccolo transpositions, that's as much as I've ever seen one here mention their music education. As far as I'm concerned, a PhD in music would be something to brag about anyway, compared with many other areas.
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2013
  6. Rapier

    Rapier Forte User

    Jul 18, 2011
    My Bb and C trumpets are exactly the same measurement, from the bell to the end of the leadpipe.
  7. Ed Lee

    Ed Lee Utimate User

    Aug 16, 2009
    Jackson NC
    I would not disagree that harmonics of C instruments should blend better, but I consider it an extreme rarity to find a pipe organ that is completely in tune. Too, ask a pipe organist to play only a trumpet stop and then discern how your C trumpet blends harmonically. Generally, all brass instruments have NO intention of comparing to C instrumentation as otherwise they would have been manufactured as such. Now you know why a Bb trumpet outsells a C trumpet. A compensating French horn has both an F and Bb side as does some tenor trombones with a Thayer valve. Too they make compensating euphoniums.
  8. Ed Lee

    Ed Lee Utimate User

    Aug 16, 2009
    Jackson NC
    Simply, to complete the transposition to Bb from concert key of C, I simply add 2 sharps to whatever the existing C music key signature is. Each sharp would negate a flat if it existed in the C music. Thus, if I had 3 flats on my C music, I'd be left with one flat in my Bb trumpet music.
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2013
  9. X3Lb

    X3Lb Pianissimo User

    Aug 15, 2010
    Shrewsbury UK & Lanzarote
    Hi Pedro trumpeter.

    Enjoy your C trumpet. I agree with VB. I also think the C trumpets (as with all the other pitches) all have their own UNIQUE CHARACTER. Differences in timbre, colour, warmth etc. A Bb for everything misses the opportunity to hear these other beautiful tones, colours and characters.

    My Schilke C is very accomodating with mouthpiece change and works equally well as my Bb, the tone and character of the two are totally different.

    As several posters have said, don't think of your Bb when you are playing the C.

    I find it is beneficial on occasions to spend a whole day just using the one instrument so that your body and hearing fully blend with your playing and you enrichen your sound quality with that instrument.

    Enjoy :thumbsup:
  10. Ed Lee

    Ed Lee Utimate User

    Aug 16, 2009
    Jackson NC
    Although I don't play a C trumpet, and can switch readily within a day between Bb trumpet, F Mellophone, and Bb euphonium (non-compensating), and even G bugle, I'll concur with X3Lb that it would be much easier to stay on one to practice for the whole day.

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