I've played trumpet for 11.5 years now and have played the same trumpet for probably 10 of those. It's an Accent brand trumpet (I have a link below) which is a re-branded B&S horn.
Since starting college 3.5 years ago, I seem to have plateaued. I know a lot of that has to do with constant mental and physical exhaustion from engineering school, but it's frustrating nonetheless. I don't go to a music school, but we are known for our music program. As the lead player in the top jazz band and the principal player of the wind ensemble, the plateau has come of a bit of surprise. Lately I've wondered if it could be, at least in part, attributed to my equipment.
Is it worth investing in a better horn? It's been a great horn, but maybe it's time to move up. The valves tend to stick constantly no matter what I try, but that's another matter altogether...