I adore my 621, I think it sounds fantastic! Quite big for such a little tuba.the elephant wrote:Noel, regarding my "crap" comment:k001k47 wrote:Sell it to me.the elephant wrote:The Yamaha is absolute crap.
A lot of people do not understand why a lot of owners of this particular tuba complain about the ergonomics.
So your post will allow me to explain about the main complaints that I have read and that line up with my own.
1. Valve angle...
The valve positioning is terrible on these tubas, making the pinky bend so that it is *inside* where the index finger is when the horn is held at the proper angle. So your wrist is bend downwards at a 55º to 60º angle if you hold it one common way or close to 45º if you hold it in what seems to be the other popular way for this tuba. Either way is very bad for things like CTS or arthritis; very sharp pains are the result.
My moving the thumb ring more than an inch "north" on the slide tube and then reshaping the lever to fit relieved a lot of stress on my wrist by opening up the claw-like finger position Yamaha saw fit to require of the player, allowing my arm to fall into a slightly different position and thereby removing the pain in my pinky-to-wrist tendon.
2. first slide...
The first slide is awkward to manipulate while holding the tuba. I added a pull ring to the 1st slide that puts my left hand in what at first seemed to be an odd place, but Yamaha did not design in a place for your left hand, so moving the 1st slide was always pretty awkward, anyway. I simply made it reachable from a location that was easier to maintain for long stretches of time.
3. Leadpipe height...
I moved the leadpipe up about 4" to remove a good bit of the painful "hunchback" that a tall player must maintain to get way down the the mouthpiece (as placed by Yamaha). Doing this required me to add about 3" of length to the leadpipe with a small angled piece at the end to allow the pipe to come up at a slightly sharper angle, which gave it another inch of distance from the bottom bow. It is not tall enough for me, but it is tall enough for most. It is much more comfortable. This also made my very sharp horn much more manageable. Many of these must be played with the main slide almost all the way out. (Maybe they had a 440 and 442 versions at the same time and did not send them to the correct markets? I have always wondered about this. The sharp ones are shorter than the ones that were obviously cut for A=440 - I have measured five of these horns besides my own, so two that were in tune with the main out an inch or so and four that needed the main out about four inches or more. Adding length to my main slide allows me to play this tuba in tune with my slide out about one inch. Prior to this leadpipe mod I had the main slide out so far that it would be pushed in by the top of my right leg as I played. So this is *much* better.
4. Overall tone...
These tubas are über bland in tone. Everyone *loves* them except for tuba players. I played an Alex 163 and wanted a tone more like that from my Yamaha. I used many mouthpieces over the years until I stumbled across the Laskey 30F, which helps me to generate more of the overtones that seem to add roundness and color to the sound. So now the tone is not so frustrating and the occasional characteristic-yet-unexpected "bark" these horns sometimes emit has gone away completely.
This mouthpiece and these three mods have turned this into a longterm keeper for me. I have owned it for over 12 years now and have no intention of selling it unless I come across an awfully good F tuba and have the money for it on hand.
So no. I will not sell it. It is MINE! MUWAHAHAHAAAAA!!!
I too thought it was uncomfortable at first, so I went out and bought a tupperware box and covered it in shelf liner. It fixed the height problem, while tipping the horn a bit to the left while on the box made it much more comfortable on my hand. All in all, it cost me about 10 bucks