Trumpet vs Cornet During Comeback?

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by Jace, Apr 1, 2011.

  1. Jace

    Jace New Friend

    Mar 19, 2011
    So for the past few months I have been trying like so many others to mount a comeback into playing the trumpet. Nothing overly serious just a few minutes a day after roughly five years of never touching it. It really feels wonderful to be making music again.

    I have noticed improvement and am getting closer to where I was in high school but here is the question. I am moving down to college in a month and picked up an Olds Ambassador Cornet for cheap to take to school with me. Mainly so I don't have to worry about busting up or losing my trumpet.

    I am concerned however that the differences in engineering between the instruments will throw me off. I have only ever played a single trumpet, the one I learned on and still use. I am mainly worried about the increased backpressure (or so I hear) and embouchure difference. I am just beginning to revist all this and am worried that the backpressure will amplify my bad breathing habbit. (I tense my upper body neck which affects my throat and the air pressure leaks into my sinuses, I'm working on breathing exercses to correct this but only started about a week ago and have a long road ahead.)

    Theoretically is it better to stick to the trumpet or just switch and go for the cornet? Or is interchaning possible or even advised for that matter. I have a feeling that consitency is king in whichever route but I feel that I should get an informed opinion.

    Anything even remotley related about trumpet, cornet and comebacks will help me.


    (I know someone will say or ask about this but my teacher won't be available until I physically move down to school after Easter.)
  2. craigph

    craigph Piano User

    Mar 12, 2010
    Huh? different engineering? increased backpressure? They aren't THAT different. Trumpet and cornet are basically like step-sisters, not distant cousins. Cornets are supposed to have a more conical bore than trumpets and they are generally wrapped tighter so you hold it closer to your face, but the length of the tubing is identical. (Different brands of trumpet can have "differences in engineering" and different blow.) The only major difference from my experience is that people often play a deeper mouthpiece on a cornet. But you don't have to. Buy a rim/cup similar to whatever you use for trumpet and just play it.
  3. The Dutch Guy

    The Dutch Guy Piano User

    Sep 22, 2008
    I agree. A cornet with a normal cornet mouthpiece sounds virtually the same as a trumpet using the same mouthpiece (with trumpet shaft). The 'cornet sound' used in brassbands comes from the deep V mouthpieces they use. There are even some trumpets that are more like cornets than some of the cornets built today, and the other way around too.

    I don't know anyone that can't instantly switch between cornets and trumpets (assuming there's a mouthpiece similar to their own present). The only big difference is the distance between the valves and the mouthpiece, in my opinion. You've got to wacht out not to smash your front teeth out when going back to trumpet!
  4. mrsemman

    mrsemman Piano User

    Apr 8, 2010
    I agree with the above. I practice with both my horns and cornet, and my fluegel horn. No problems. However, there is the tendency to push my trumpet mouthpiece in closer to my tonsils.
  5. sj3209

    sj3209 Piano User

    Nov 22, 2006
    Amador County, Calif.
    I played my nephew's cornet once while visiting. He has the same model. That was one of the stuffiest horns I've ever played. Really awful. Maybe it was the model or just a problem with that horn.

    Cornets have a different feel but not so much as to be a problem. Check your cornet, that might be the issue.

    As for the original question, I love the feel of a cornet. It feels more comfortable to hold and for me, there is an intimacy that makes it much more pleasing to play.
  6. trumpetup

    trumpetup Piano User

    Jan 12, 2009
    Godley, Texas
    Some cornets have a very large bore and takes alot of air to fill them up. The cornet does have a more conical tubing making it have a more mellow sound. The biggest difference between playing trumpet and cornet is your approach to the music. If you want the music to sound like a cornet you approach it as though you want it to sound that way. If you want it to sound like a trumpet than you approach it that way.
    Good luck with school,
  7. mineo50

    mineo50 Pianissimo User

    Jan 15, 2011
    Barstow, CA
    Way back in the "Dark Ages:"I learned to play on a cornet, they seemed to be a much more common instrument in bands when I was young. I didn't even own a trumpet until I was 25yo. I was able to buy my Olds Recording at a garage sale for $75.00 (1974). Due to the balanced style of the Recording I noticed virually no difference in the playing when switching between the horns. I now regularly switch off between the trumpet and cornet when practicing at home with no detriment to sound, range or tonality on either instrument.

    I will agree with The Dutch Guy that you may need to watch out for your front teeth when going back to the trumpet...there is qiute a bit of difference in the distance from the mouth piece to the valve block between the two instuments.

    Enjoy your new Ambassador. It should serve you well.
  8. craigph

    craigph Piano User

    Mar 12, 2010

    That doesn't make any sense to me. The recording's valve are further away than a normal trumpet, which is further away than on a cornet. I have hit my mouth a couple times when switching from another trumpet or a cornet to my Olds Recording. Quickly going from cornet to Recording, I think you be more likely to hit your ear than teeth, in fact.
  9. mineo50

    mineo50 Pianissimo User

    Jan 15, 2011
    Barstow, CA
    Sorry, early morning here and I didn't clarify enough. You are correct about the distance issue. What I was refering to was more the feel and centered weight of both horns. The valve blocks of both the Recording and a cornet are centered. this results in a very similar feel in the hands as opposed to a trumpet that is not a "balanced" model.
  10. craigph

    craigph Piano User

    Mar 12, 2010

    Oh, I see what you're saying. Personally I find them (Recording vs. cornet) quite different due to the distance from my face. I do think that the cornet's I have played feel very nicely balanced. My Conn especially so, since it has a wide wrap and I can fit my whole (large) left hand around the valves.

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