My Conn Vintage 1 came with 2 slides. When I was choosing between it a Bach, I originally liked the Bach a bit better until I tried the Conn with the rounded slide. After that switch I preferred the Conn. To me the horn felt more responsive and lively. When I look at the 2 slides the bracing is in exactly the same place so as far as I'm concerned the only 2 differences are the shape of the bend and the round slide has amado water key and the "D" shaped slide a standard lever style water key.
In my case, I got to try it out with the horn first to know what it sounded/felt like. If I were to search for a new horn today, I wouldn't exclude horns with "D" shaped slides simply because I prefer it in my current horn. Horn designers build a horn as a system and messing with that can have adverse affects. In the Vintage one's case, it was designed with both slides as options to appeal to different tastes.
My horn came with both. I can't say this is true of all horns, but the rounded makes for a bit easier blowing, while the squared gives quicker response and slotting power. I use the squared one. I play a Conn Vintage One with a Copper Bell. Its a beautiful horn.
My large bore Bach with the 72 bell is a totally different instrument with the stock tuning slide than it is with the curved slide. I believe that the rounded slide makes the horn more "open" and reduces the perceived resistance. But, does it SOUND different? I doubt it. But when you get to that point, it become more of a function of how you perceive the horn's "playability": what is easier for you and what do you think is more 'responsive'?
You pays your money and you takes your choices.
1940 Martin Handcraft Cornet
1946 Martin Committee Trumpet
1947 Martin Committee Cornet
Early 70's Yamaha Flugel s/n 000xxx
Selmer Piccolo (a side ONLY)
I've played a buddies' Wild Thing with both slides and could not tell any difference. The tubing is the same diameter and length...why would anything change because of the shape of said tube? I always hear the plug about less "resistance" in an ovate or round tuning slide...but there really isn't that much air pushing against the "turn" as far as I can tell by the amount coming out of the bell. The amount and placement of bracing give the player more or less feedback which feels, respectively, more open or tight. Sound waves diffract around the corners inside the trumpet just like they do around buildings, trees, and any other obstacle.
King 600 (first horn)
Taylor Chicago 46 VR (my baby)
"Trumpet playing isn't rocket science...because we know how to make rockets."
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