I've been playing for about a half century or so. I've always struggled to play the trumpet. I've always had limited range, tone and endurance. I think that I have bad habits that are difficult (impossible?) to break at this point. I've stuck with it because, despite my difficulties, I love to play. My understanding is that an instrument and a mouthpiece are always going to be a compromise. If the mouthpiece aids you in one aspect of playing, you'll lose in some other way. So, unless you're a specialist, you go with middle of the road equipment. I also think, correct me if I'm wrong, that it requires a certain degree of chops to be able to play several instruments or mouthpieces in a row, and discern the subtle differences between them. Whenever I've encountered a colleague that said "wow, check it out, this horn is great" I've tried it and could hardly tell the difference between that horn and any other. What I'm getting at - is it worth it for me to pursue finding a trumpet or a mouthpiece that's "just right for me"? Does it make that much of a difference? Or is my time and energy better spent in just pursuing better practice and playing technique? I've played on a Bach 7C mouthpiece for most of my life. I have a Benge MLP trumpet, and also a Bach Strad. Any comments on the particular equipment that I use? How long will a trumpet last? Do you have to replace a trumpet, even a really good one, just because it will wear out over time? Thanks for responses.