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Trumpet Discussion Discuss Finish in the General forums; Hi Manny. Does the finish of a trumpet affect the warmth and darkness of its sound? If I had a ...
  1. #1
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    Join Date
    Dec 2005


    Hi Manny.

    Does the finish of a trumpet affect the warmth and darkness of its sound?
    If I had a raw brass finish on a trumpet and then had a lacquer or a silver finish on another identical trumpet, would the two sound different in any way?

    "Be yourself because the ones who mind don't matter and the ones who matter don't mind." - BB

  2. #2
    Utimate User
    Join Date
    Sep 2004

    It's all a question of degrees. The raw brass is its natural sound as conceived by the maker of the instrument. When you laquer the instrument there is a certain amount of buffing that has to take place before that process. Does that affect the sound? Yes. To what degree? It depends on your ear. What I understand about silver and gold plating is that it, to a degree, becomes an integral part of the metal as opposed to a covering or a "paint" like laquer. I heard that many, many years ago when I was a student. It stands to reason that a metal plating will direct the sound more. How much will you be able to discern? It depends on the sensitivity of your ear and how consistent the test process is.

    I would think that the difference of sound with plating is more or less significant depending on the thickness of the brass instrument you're plating. An instrument with a greater thickness will show less variation of sound than an instrument that is thinner.

    That's my take on it based on what I've learned from others.


  3. #3
    Fortissimo User gzent's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Rochester, MN
    Also, today's top manufacturers use coatings that are much thinner and durable than the lacquers used in the past. Hence, they claim to affect the sound less than in the past.
    Stop acting like someone shot your dog.

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