What is slotting?

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by Melodious Thunk, Feb 2, 2009.

  1. Melodious Thunk

    Melodious Thunk Pianissimo User

    Jan 14, 2009
    Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA
    Just wondering what slotting is? It comes up quite often as I review posts, but I can't seem to figure out its definition?
  2. willbarber

    willbarber Piano User

    Nov 22, 2008
    Medina, NY
    It's like hitting the center of a note easily, that's how I take it.
  3. Bear

    Bear Forte User

    Apr 30, 2004
    Or another way to think about it: slotting is where you don't have to force the horn to adjust to a pitch. For instance, play a high D and see if the horn naturally responds at the center of the pitch. Sometimes, horn with bad slotting will frack/crack/split etc a high D or you'll have to bend it way down/up to find the center of pitch.
  4. Myshilohmy

    Myshilohmy Pianissimo User

    Jan 6, 2009
    So would a D on the staff naturally be in tune of you have good slotting? I tend to go real sharp on low D, C# (obviously these two), E, A, G on top of staff, and A above staff and usually flat on D in the staff. Everything else is pretty close, I'm playing on a Bach Strad, I don't know any details, all I know is it was a limited edition horn I bought in 2003ish I think.
  5. andy-rockstar

    andy-rockstar Pianissimo User

    Jan 6, 2009
    Anchorage, AK
    Slotting (as far as I know) refers to hitting a note square, like going from a G right above the staff to a high C, without hitting any other note (like that pesky open B-flat right below it). I could be totally wrong. . . that's what I thought it meant.
  6. A.N.A. Mendez

    A.N.A. Mendez Utimate User

    Oct 25, 2005
    Sunny Ca.
    It's what an Olds super does, and you like it, and what a Martin Committee doesn't do and you don't care.:-?
  7. lovevixen555

    lovevixen555 Banned

    Nov 5, 2008
    Ever pick up a horn and it was just easy to play? You where not liping notes andnot slideing ontothe note just very crisp? Wait for it wait the not's just fell into their "slot" or it played like the notes where in a "slot" etc.... A trumpet that slots well can a pain if you do a lot of jazz and like to bend the notes around especialy for improve....It is great though in Orch.,Syph,March and just about all other forms of music. Every company has some instruments that slot so tight you couldnot bend a note with out tearing a lip off and some that are so lose it is like wrestleing with the horn. Now a horn that slots ok but not great "has Charcter" if it is too lose then you do not play it so much as make polite request's and see what comes out the other side. The medium large bore Martin COmmettie for instance Ihave been told that either your style match's that horn or the horn wins all the battles because it is said that even if you try to force the issue they do not like to center and sit still.

    Here goes another example I had a Bach in school and it was an intemediate I think it was a Merceds I. Anyways my band teacher could pick any note she wanted from me and I could play it on request and sustain it with idiot like regualarity!! I didnot have to concentrate or keep adjusting my embourchure etc all I had to do was not change anything andnot run out of air. On a trumpet like a large bore Boston Vega when you went to hit a note it was easy to be a hair off and slide onto it then if you sustained it for a while you would have to keep adjusting your embourchure a little bit to keep it in the slot.

    On a scale of 1 to 10 with 10 being say Bach Strad. or early Benge dead on tight slotting and say 1 being a Martin Commettie Horn most people can do just fine with anything inthe 5-10 range.

    Now their is a down side to make a trumpet that slots real tight besides the ability to bend notes with ease. This is my opinion and not a cast in stone scientific fact but as you increase the slotting of a trumpet youtend to kill it's color and character! It is very hard to find a trumpet that slots tight and has a very colorful sound rich with harmonics and over tones etc..... I am not saying it is not possable either only that thisis what I tend to notice most often. This is one reason I prefer older instruments to newer one's. I do not need super sloting and perfectintonation as few in the listening audience if I went back to performing would even know that the intonation was a little off.

    Here is a good example. Most student horns slot great but are as dead as a doornail in terms of the color of the sound. MOst student horns have great attack and have great intonation. Most of them are easy to blow too. Few of them are their own design most are copied from other pro-models and just made with cheaper materials and manufactureing process's. The trick is not getting them to slot of play with perfect intonation today! The trick today is to build an affordable trumpet that has color while still remaining easily playable at a price most can afford.
  8. Bear

    Bear Forte User

    Apr 30, 2004
    No, a third space D is NOT "naturally" in tune. Google "tuning tendencies for trumpet" or something along those lines to get a refresher in that. Every valve combination we use does something to our intonation. Granted, we don't always follow it to the letter as different players have different tendencies but one of those charts will help get you started.
  9. rviser

    rviser Pianissimo User

    Dec 26, 2008
    So, if I'm understanding, one could say Wynton probably prefers a horn w. really loose slotting? As do many New Orleans style players, because they like to bend and drop the notes a lot?
  10. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

    Jun 18, 2006
    Slotting is basic physics and horn theory. It refers to the efficiency of the tones that are naturally produced.
    When playing some horns, the tones just seem to lock in. On other instruments, they don't lock in as well.

    Some players think that slotting keeps us from splitting notes. I consider that to be BS in a big way. If we have earned our range, it makes no difference. It can be maybe somewhat more comfortable one way or the other depending on what we are used to. Slots do not help or hurt bending notes.

    Wynton plays a Monette and because they are very "efficient" and "resonant", they also have very well defined slots.

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