How do you "consider" a horn you've never played?

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by amzi, Jul 24, 2013.

  1. amzi

    amzi Forte User

    Feb 18, 2010
    Northern California
    The title pretty much states the question, how do people, based on reputation alone justify a trumpet purchase? I am considering buying some new horns and have a list of trumpets I intend to try before I make a decision to purchase. Personally I would never consider buying a horn based on reputation alone. Yet, I read so many posts in which someone is asking if he/she should buy a horn they have never played, a horn they have only heard about. I played a dozen horns before settling on my Recording Olds--and every variation in the shop before buying my 72MLV. Both times these were the horns I preferred, neither purchase (thanks Mom and Dad for the Olds) has ever been regretted. If I had just walked in and bought a Connstellation (that's what my Director recommended) or a 37 ML (that's what the prof at my college recommended) those horns would have been replaced long ago. I realize that trying out horns isn't as easy as it used to be, but I can't imagine not playing a horn before I bought it. Lay it on me, am I wrong in believing this.

    PS--I'm not talking about buying a classic horn today--I've played so many different horns over the last 50 years I already know how most of them play.
  2. Vulgano Brother

    Vulgano Brother Moderator Staff Member

    Mar 23, 2006
    Parts Unknown
    It's my experience that the trumpet finds the player.
  3. Dean_0

    Dean_0 Piano User

    Jan 21, 2013
    Amzi :

    If you've done this already just post a link but ,if you could at some point post your findings? i would be interested in your impressions of different horns ?

    I know most people think that different horns play differently for different people but still would like to hear if you had thoughts .

  4. amzi

    amzi Forte User

    Feb 18, 2010
    Northern California
    That's kind of where I'm coming from--I think. I recall the story of Chase finding his first B6. He wasn't even looking for a new horn, he just played another guy's horn and loved it immediately. I don't remember if he managed to buy that exact horn (supposedly he really tried) but the B6 became the horn he played for the rest of his life.
  5. Dale Proctor

    Dale Proctor Utimate User

    Jul 20, 2006
    Heart of Dixie
    No matter what people say about a horn, you'll never know if it's the horn for you unless you play it first. I've bought a few cheaper horns on reputation (and tried out others), and found that the rave reviews I'd read/heard were not accurate, at least for me. Sometimes, a great horn just doesn't fit you, and other times, I'm convinced the on-line recommendations were made by hacks...
  6. gmonady

    gmonady Utimate User

    Jan 28, 2011
    Dayton, Ohio
    Coming up to these last few months... I will have bought only two horns without ever trying them first.

    The Getzen Eterna Flugelhorn - When I was young and naive and should have know better, but bought it for the most wrong reason: Because at the time Rick Braun played that horn.

    Then 30 years passed by where I sampled horns at trumpet hangs, and music stores, and bought ONLY horns that I tried. Even the Martin Committee... as all the hype on TM did not sell me on buying that horn, but when I tried it at the Columbus Trumpet Hang, I had to have it. I was possessed. And now it posses me.

    Jump now to present time. I am an Olds fanatic, and yes all the hype I have read on the Super Recording was finally too much to take, so without every playing one, I am in the final process of arranging to take delivery on this horn, I believe a 1930's version. OK partially due to hype, but also trust, as the person selling me this horn, I have more trust and faith in then any highly recognized recording artist. So not only have I considered it, not once, but twice, and I feel very good about this up and coming purchase.
  7. amzi

    amzi Forte User

    Feb 18, 2010
    Northern California
    Dean_O--sorry, my opinions really boil down to like it or don't like it. I never analyzed the horns, I just decided that I liked them or I didn't. Most of the ones I don't like fall into the "not a bad horn, but not for me" category. Besides the Recording and 72 MLV trumpets I loved a mid-60's Couesnon I played-- first horn I ever hit a double C on. Would have bought it but as a Sophomore I just couldn't come up with the money. I played a large bore Courtois Grand Siecle in the late 80s that I loved. Once again I couldn't come up with the money (kids). I had the chance to buy a Chicago Benge when I bought my Recording--don't regret buying the Recording, but wouldn't have been unhappy with the Benge. Like the Schilke B6, but never had a reason to buy one. I never got into into the dark/bright thing, or the open/tight thing when I try a horn--I either like it or I don't as a package. Sorry I can't help you more.
  8. Peter McNeill

    Peter McNeill Utimate User

    Jan 30, 2009
    Melbourne Australia
    I am just green with envy that you trumpeters in the USA have such an opportunity to play horns before you buy them. In Australia (as I am sure other parts of the big world) we cannot just go and play horns to try out at the local store. Most stores have limited trumpet stocks, and maybe only one or 2 in the big cities have a selection od 2nd hand to try.

    Trumpet "Hangs" sound like a fantastic idea. Maybe something like that may get organised here.

    James Morrison and Ozwinds did a great job with Schagerl, when he launched the Academica range. He held a Masterclass at one of the colleges and took the horns still in the case, the horns still wrapped in plastic. Took them out and blew the clouds away. Then the audience had a chance to come down and blow them all at the end of the session.

    Nearly all of mine are (toss the coin) Ebay deals. I would say I have been extremely lucky, and what I got was described well. It takes time to know who to trust on Ebay, and how to bid and buy for International shipping. A lot of US Ebayers get put off selling to Oz, but I have never had a problem. USPS International has been 100% reliable to me.

    The other downside is that new horns made overseas are generally made to order (the high end versions), so you need to order and wait to get it. Cannot play first in that case either.
  9. amzi

    amzi Forte User

    Feb 18, 2010
    Northern California
    Don't feel so envious. I have to go into San Francisco/Oakland to find a decent selection of professional trumpets. Not only do I have to drive 4 hours then I have to deal with BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit) so I only get to visit a few shops each trip. Spent a whole day in the East Bay once and found no professional trumpets (I was specifically looking for a Xeno). Another time I spent a whole day in and around Sacrament and found nothing of interest to play--student trumpets and Bach Strads. Anyway, I'm enrolling my friend's repair shop in NAMM and paying the dues so I can pay my own way to their winter convention so I can play some of the horns I am interested in. Some areas are better--like Los Angeles, but most shops are filled with student horns.
  10. kehaulani

    kehaulani Fortissimo User

    May 14, 2011
    Hawaian homey
    Huh? How old was Rick Braun when you started listening to him. I didn't realize that he was well known 30+ years ago.

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