Saxophone

Best Saxophone Brands

August 10, 2018
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Best Saxophone Brands

There are many brands of saxophones in today’s market. Considering that the sax is a versatile instrument that comes in a myriad of types and styles, it can be difficult to choose the best brand for your saxophone. In this article, you will get a glimpse of the factors to consider when choosing a saxophone brand. We have also reviewed some of the best. This will make it easy for you to choose the best saxophone when you go buying.

Why Should You Consider Brand?

When you are purchasing a saxophone, you might be tempted to buy from just any brand. After all, any saxophone will do. Right?

Wrong. Saxophones are expensive and buying from the wrong brand can leave you with a useless instrument after just a few months. There are many benefits to considering before buying a saxophone brand. Some of them include:

  • An existing reputation – Some brands have built a reputation and a perception of providing quality instruments. This has earned them the trust of consumers. However, unknown brands do not have such a reputation and some may not pass the test of time.
  • Fast decision-making – Having a brand in mind can save you time spent on making a decision. For instance, if you are searching online for a saxophone you will get a ton of results and reviews. However, if you are only looking for a certain brand of saxophone, you will find it easier to find the horn you are looking for.
  • Brands help you avoid risks – Picking a brand for your saxophone can give you an opportunity to read reviews online. You will know what to expect. This also reduces the risk of disappointment or failure of your investment.
  • Brands make a statement – The type of instrument you play can tell others who you are. For instance, you might prefer a horn from Selmer as they are often labeled as the best of the best. Or you might buy a Yanagisawa saxophone since they use bronze on their saxophones.

Key Considerations When Buying Best Saxophone Brands

Buying a saxophone is a big investment. With so many saxophones brands available in the market, finding the right one can be challenging. In this guide, we give you a few pointers on what factors to consider when making a choice on the best brand for your saxophone.

  • Reputation and quality – There are some manufacturers that people known as being high-quality. Most saxophonists agree that the top four brands include Yamaha, Yanagisawa, Keilwerth, and Selmer. However, it is important to note that there are new manufacturers from Asia that are coming up who are worth looking into. Some of them include Cannonball, Dakota, Jupiter, Jean Paul, and Chateau among others.
  • Price of the horn – Reputable brands such as Yamaha and Yanagisawa sell their saxophones at a higher price. If you are a student or on a budget, you can consider saxophones by Asian brands where labor is cheap making the price of the instrument affordable.
  • Experience level of the player – Many companies make saxophones for musicians at different levels. For instance, Keilwerth does not make a student line although they have saxophones for intermediate and professional players. Yamaha does have a student line though.
  • Vintage or new – New saxophones are not cheap although they often have a warranty in case of damage. You might prefer a vintage horn because of the price. There are brands that only sell vintage horns while others sell both new and used. Selmer Paris is one such company. Other brands including King, Conn, Martin, and Buffet are famous for selling quality saxophones. Before buying, ensure you test if the vintage saxophone is in good condition.

Our Top Recommended Saxophones Reviewed.

Selmer SAS280 La Voix II Alto Saxophone

  • Well-crafted horn from a reputable seller
  • Good looking horn at an affordable price
  • Excellent tone quality and projection
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Jean Paul USA AS-400 Student Alto Saxophone

  • Great intonation with a consistent pitch
  • Easy to tune and use for beginners
  • Comes at an affordable price
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Mendini by Cecilio MAS-L+92D+PB

  • Constructed with quality materials making it durable
  • Easy to assemble
  • Comes with a number of accessories
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Glory Professional Alto Eb SAX Saxphone

  • Beautiful sax that comes in a variety of colours
  • Suitable for both beginner and professional players
  • Notes are easy to play for a student
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Lazarro Black-Gold Keys Eb E Flat Alto Saxaphone

  • Has a nice voice for beginners and intermediate players
  • Affordable and comes in different colours
  • Concave pads and a good looking body
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While there is no one perfect brand when it comes to buying a saxophone, the above factors can help you choose the great one. Below we have put together some of the best saxophones from different brands to help you make an informed decision.

Selmer SAS280 La Voix II Alto Saxophone

The Selmer SAS280 is an intermediate model saxophone for students who would want to upgrade from the student to the intermediate or professional level saxophones. It is also made by Selmer a reputable company known for making quality horns. Furthermore, this is an excellent horn with free blowing sound and a precise pitch. The ultra-bell design and the copper brass improves the sound quality. The horn also offers professional key styling for better figuring and comes at an affordable price.

Pros:

  • Well-crafted horn from a reputable seller
  • Good looking horn at an affordable price
  • Excellent tone quality and projection
  • Comfortable figuring

Cons:

  • The  neck strap is of poor quality
  • The case is not hard enough for travel

This sax is ideal for intermediate or professional players on a budget. It is by Selmer, which is known to craft quality horns. This beautiful horn offers great tone quality and the keys are close together for easier figuring.

Jean Paul USA AS-400 Student Alto Saxophone

The Jean Paul AS-400 suits the beginner and intermediate players. This horn is beautifully made with a gold lacquered finish. It is also very responsive to beginners and has perfect intonation. Furthermore, it comes with many accessories so it can be played right from the box.

Pros:

  • Great intonation with a consistent pitch
  • Easy to tune and use for beginners
  • Comes at an affordable price
  • Beautiful finish with engravings inside and outside the bell

Cons:

  • Ligature and the case are of poor quality
  • Some customers complain that it looks cheap
  • Not ideal for professionals

If you are a beginner, this great saxophone comes at an affordable price. It is also manufactured with the student in mind, which makes it easy to use. Furthermore, the additional accessories ensure that you do not have to spend more to start playing this horn.

Mendini by Cecilio MAS-L+92D+PB Gold Lacquer E Flat Alto Saxophone

This Mendini saxophone is made by Cecilio a musical instrument manufacturing company founded in 2004. This firm makes high-quality horns that are affordable. With a body that is gold lacquered, a ribbed constriction and durable leather pads, this saxophone is not only strong but also easy to play. The horn also comes with a host of accessories and it is ideal for both beginner and professional players

Pros:

  • Constructed with quality materials making it durable
  • Easy to assemble
  • Comes with a number of accessories

Cons:

  • The neck strap does not have padding
  • There were complaints that some notes were unplayable
  • Poor quality reeds and mouthpiece

Overall, this durable saxophone is well priced. It also comes with many accessories making it ready to play and easier to use for a student.

Glory Professional Alto Eb SAX Saxphone

The Glory professional alto saxophone is made from quality materials. This horn is also affordable. Furthermore, it comes with a high F# key. It is easy to play for both beginners and professionals.

Pros:

  • Beautiful sax that comes in a variety of colours
  • Suitable for both beginner and professional players
  • Notes are easy to play for a student
  • Comes with a sturdy and lightweight case

Cons:

  • The neck strap and the reeds might need replacement
  • Some customers complained about the finish peeling off
  • Quality issues with customers complaining of parts being defective

An affordable saxophone for both student and professional players. It is also beautifully made and comes in a variety of colors. Furthermore, you might need to buy new accessories as most of the ones that come with this sax are of poor quality.

Lazarro Black-Gold Keys Eb E Flat Alto Saxaphone

The Lazarro Black Gold is a stylish and durable saxophone made by Lazarro a US-based musical instruments manufacturer. The horn has a great sound. It is also affordable and comes in 12 colors leaving the player spoilt for choice.

Pros:

  • Has a nice voice for beginners and intermediate players
  • Affordable and comes in different colours
  • Concave pads and a good looking body

Cons:

  • The neck strap does not have cushioning
  • Customers complained of broken parts after a few month’s use
  • Hard to get repair parts

The Lazarro professional saxophone is a great horn for beginners and intermediate players. It comes in a variety of colors and at an affordable price.

Yamaha YAS-280 Saxophone

The Yamaha YAS 280 saxophone is a horn manufactured by the popular and well-reputed Yamaha. This model is best for beginners and intermediate players. It is lightweight making it easy to carry around and the design makes it easy to grip this horn. The production of sound is flawless and the design is appealing and stylish.

Pros:

  • Made with durable and lightweight material
  • The gold lacquer finish gives this horn a professional appealing look
  • Has the F# key that lacks in many students horns

Cons:

  • The neck strap is not padded
  • Quite pricey for those on a budget
  • Does not come with a cleaning kit or a pad saver

The Yamaha YAS-280 has easy to use features that make it ideal for student players. Its quality sound and the beautiful body makes this horn stand out from the crowd. If you do not mind spending more on a quality horn, then this horn will not disappoint.

Yamaha YAS-62 Professional Alto Saxophone

The Yamaha YAS-6211 professional saxophone is a worthwhile investment ideal for both students and professional players. The horn has quality sealing which results in a richer and fuller sound. It also has additional features that reduce air loss allowing some notes to be played fully. Furthermore, it also comes with a narrower bore on the neck, which gives the player better control.

Pros:

  • Ideal for both students and professional players
  • A quality horn that provides great value for money
  • Extra features that allow for a fuller richer sound

Cons:

  • Expensive
  • Comes with very few accessories

This saxophone is perfect for players who are looking for a great investment and do not mind spending on a horn. It is a popular horn with professional players because of its full tone. It is also ideal for students due to its ease of use.

Etude EAS- 100 Student Alto Saxophone

The Etude EAS-100 Student saxophone is made from quality metals for durability. The horn can be played immediately after purchase and the key works and pads work well to produce full tones. This is also an affordable horn for student players on a budget.

Pros:

  • Easy to play for student players
  • Comes ready to play with a myriad of accessories
  • Affordable for those on a budget

Cons:

  • The neck strap is of low quality
  • Most repair shop will not repair it if it is damaged
  • Hard to find spare parts

This sax is ideal for student players starting out in alto. It is affordable and gives the player value for money. Made of durable materials this sax will last and the ease of use makes it great value for money.

Jean Paul USA TS 400 Tenor Saxophone

The US TS-400 tenor saxophone is ideal for beginner and intermediate sax players. It has an aesthetically pleasing yellow brass body. Moreover, the bell brace is strong and long-lasting and beginners will find it easy to use due to the tapered pivot keys. It also comes with different accessories allowing you to start playing as soon as you buy it.

Pros:

  • Easy to play for students
  • Made of durable materials
  • Comes with a range of accessories

Cons:

  • Some customers complained that the octave key was too low
  • Price is a bit high for a beginner

A good beginner sax that has all the features needed for ease of play. The sax is beautiful with the brass yellow body and the key is set in the key of Bb perfect for tenor players. Furthermore, the sax also comes with additional accessories to allow for immediate play.

Mendini by Cecilio MTS-L+ 92D Gold Lacquer B Flat Tenor Saxophone

The Mendini MTS L-92D saxophone is ideal for student musicians who want to horn their skill before buying high-end saxophones. It is affordable and has fast action keys for ease of play. The sax produces a deep and rich sound and an even intonation. It also comes ready to play out of the box because of the additional accessories.

Pros:

  • Perfect horn for beginners
  • Easy to play and produces great sound
  • Affordable for those on a budget

Cons:

  • The reeds and the shoulder straps are not of high quality
  • Not ideal for professional players as it has a small stock tip opening
  • Some customers complained of quality issues

An affordable saxophone for those who want to learn tenor without breaking the bank.  Easy to use and produces a quality sound for a beginner sax. The horn also comes with many accessories such that players do not have to buy them separately.

Final Thoughts

In conclusion, choosing the right brand to buy your saxophone from doesn’t have to be so hard. This article gives you factors to consider when choosing the best manufacture of your new saxophone. Choosing a reputable brand whose saxophones are durable and affordable can help you get a horn that will serve you for a lifetime.

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Agnes holds a Bachelor’s degree in English and is an avid feline lover and adoring owner of two cats, Agnes’s love for music has led her to a successful career as a freelance writer specializing in the music space.
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