The bulk of the musical talk
I used to play them. They are nice, but not worth $410 each. YMMV.
It is impossible for one with their finite mind to comprehend the incredible miracles, mercies, and powers of an infinite God. It is good to know He's there and loves us, though.
Miraphone 1291 CC
1968 Besson New Standard Eb
I agree. There is a lot of ad hype surrounding these. Most players have sorted through this. However, some are still claiming them to be miraculous, but you MUST play them "Dave's way" to see any *real* benefit over other mouthpieces.
Of course, when you note that "Dave's way" is simply good teaching and that "Dave's way" works equally well with ANY tuba mouthpiece you will see the smoke and the mirrors.
They are not worth the price unless you are into exclusivity, which is rather silly.
NOTE: They *are* very good mouthpieces, to be certain. However, they are no better than many other tuba mouthpieces available for much less money, some being less than a "C Note" in price.
You will find some users who are too embarrassed to tell you this after having plunked down a LOT of money of several of them. This is normal. "What is your favorite _______?" The answer is frequently "The one I own." This is true for just about anything. This is why user reviews of something so subjective can be fairly useless.
I have spent money on these. I wasted a lot of my money on them. I did not like my 94 any more or less than my several Conn Helleberg 120 copies. It was just more expensive.
Last edited by the elephant on Thu May 05, 2016 1:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.
The literal answer to your question is that they "feel" like a gold plated mouthpiece. Listen to the elephant. Play the mouthpiece you've got and put the $820 plus shipping in the bank.
If you simply have to try them (yes, I did too, no big deal) hang around here and Ebay for a while and one will turn up for less than half the price of a new one. And when it turns out to be not-that-great, you can pass it on for pretty much what you have in it.
If they were priced about $300 less, they would be recommendable. They are just too expensive new. They are nothing special. I've watched some videos on Monette's facebook and he is a used car salesman extraordinaire, talking up his products like nothing else comes close. Rubs me the wrong way.
I looked into buying one pretty seriously a few years ago. I can't remember the model but Baltimore Brass had both one of these Monettes and a two-piece Symphony. I tried both of these back to back with my main piece at that time (which was probably a GW Caver Lite) and found that the Monette was nothing really special, though I did buy the Symphony (but I digress with that)...
The other ones I have tried (which is like maybe two others) have led me to the same conclusion which is that they really aren't anything special except for being a heavy weight mouthpiece lated in 24K that costs a ton and are rarely seen in the wild.
Everything here is right with I have found and that is from people far more experienced than I. If you want one, I would agree with finding one used on here or Ebay. Otherwise, contact Bloke or Ivan (Giddings and Webster) and have them help you find one of their pieces that will get the job done for you.
Robert S. Pratt
MM Tuba Perf. - Wright State University '17
BM Tuba Perf. - Towson University '13
Jinbao JBEP-1150S Euphonium
I tried a friend's 95 on my Eb. It played nicely, but it was not exceptional. He got his for a very reasonable price so he did well. I would not purchase one. I like the Sellsmanberger line a lot better. I also like the wedge mouth pieces. I have not found a G&W mouthpiece that I like either.
I have several friends who use a Monette on their trumpets and like them a lot.
1895 Courtiere (J.W. Pepper Import) Helicon Eb
1906 York 640
1912 Martin Renowned Monster Eb
1921 Holton Helicon Eb
1932 Conn 28K Sousaphone
2010 Kanstul 66T
2016 Bubbie Mark 5
I agree with what everyone has posted above. The Monettes are fine mouthpieces, but they won't magically improve your playing as Dave's site implies. I currently play one on my F tuba and really like the feel and response, but I play a Doug Elliot TU T on my BBb and like it more than the Monettes I have tried.
A few other thoughts on the Monettes:
They don't hold their value well. A new one costs $410, but I purchased mine from here for under $200 each (just wait for them to pop up).
Also, the shanks are an odd size and they can 'bottom out' in some tubas. They insert most of the way up to the cup, and on my BBb it had a noticeable effect on the intonation.
Just my 2 cents. Have fun testing!
I used to own 4 of them , now I own 0, they are nice pieces like people have said, but they don't magically fix you're intonation and give you wonderbread sound, but again as people have said not nearly worth the $400+ they cost now.
The heavy mouthpiece is seductive. It does seem to highlight certain timbral characteristics. I'm thinking in terms of an intense focus, and a rather dense sound that seems to draw you into playing louder, or maybe stronger is a better word. While the piece does seem rather efficient, by directing so much of the harmonic activity into the instrument, there is a price to pay in that it still takes a lot of energy. It is not a 'fatigue free' experience.
There are times when I really think I want this dense, very macho, orchestral sound, but I find it is actually a less interesting sound. For me it has been more difficult to color the sound on a heavy mass mouthpiece. For the long haul, I'm finding I much prefer a lightweight stainless, skeletonized piece, more or less in the form of a Helleberg. But being the kind of person I am, I like to have the option of having a heavy mp for certain things.
I enjoy the Monette 94 and 94F Prana. The rim set up is identical which makes going back and forth pretty smooth. But other companies such as G&W and Sidey also offer that feature. I don't suppose I actually understand the pricing at around $400. That is a perceived value. I'm sure the actual value of the materials is probably 1/10th of that. I do believe they are fine pieces, they are somewhat 'exclusive.' but they are not a magic bullet. On the right tuba they can light things up a bit, where other pieces sort of seem a little dull. But for the most part we are likely splitting hairs unless you are able to discern the difference, and looking for a little technicolor in your sound.
I think if I were to spend that kind of money, I would like to try a Titanium Helleberg. Having priced Titanium in 2" rods, I can understand why they are pricey. So the actual value is closer to the perceived value.
I do though, seriously appreciate what Dave Monette has done for brass players. He is totally "high end," and when one becomes envolved in a community of players such as that, well you tend to take your playing a bit more seriously. It's then that all the little things seem to matter a bit more.
Wessex 5/4 CC "Wyvern"
Wessex 4/4 F "Berg"
BMB CC BAT (sad to give up for adoption - check out Baltimore Brass)
Wessex Cimbasso F
Mack Bass Trombone
Conn 5V Double Bell Euphonium
only one general thread comment...
small exit bores
comment on the most recent comment...
Titanium is expensive (several times as much as brass for a chunk long enough to make a tuba mouthpiece), but the main cost is that it is difficult to machine - being both hard and flexible.
After ten years of it not being utilized and not being for sale, we FINALLY were able to secure "midsouthmusic.com" (not yet developed).
When we get it up and running - and (obviously) with an extensive section for the mouthpieces, should I also post a little half-page thing about "if you don't like our stuff you're doing it wrong"?
no, no I won't
' just stopped by... It appears that there has been some redesigning of the site, and I was unable to find that little instructional section for tubaists. I also noticed some mouthpieces with less bulk and with cone-shaped exteriors.
Are these some of the same instructional-related images that appeared there?
I just read on their site that the tuba mouthpieces take 3-6 months to make you can get an entire tuba made and shipped in that time frame. That just blows my mind.
Anybody know anything about the newer 7 and 7F? Those are the only I haven't played, those I doubt they would be replacing my blokepieces anytime soon.
They are a small shop and tuba product is VERY low on the priority list. I would buy one of these lightly used, if you can find one at a reasonable price. I play the Prana 94 and like it. I would never have paid even half price for it. I rarely change equipment, so I'll probably use it until it needs replating. These are quality mouthpieces but I agree with everything mentioned above.
It's worth trying out if you can find one used for under $225 or so. That way you can resell it for a similar price and not lose any money I've tried two different Monettes and they were nice but I kept having a lingering doubt in my mind that they were worth what I bought them for (used!).
Bloke is right, the shank is much different in terms of thickness than anything I've seen.
Chester Schmitz used them and Steve Campbell does in Minnesota, so they obviously get the job done.
Anybody tested Monette 7 ?
Miraphone 497 Hagen BBb Tuba, Blokepiece Symphony #2 33.2 mm
Besson BE2052 Prestige Euphonium, Denis Wick SM4U-X
I have a Prana 94 that I got used recently. I bought it for my 6/4, and it does make a small difference, but nothing magical, and it feels like I am playing a vacuum cleaner. When I put in on my 4/4, it was remarkably better than anything else I have used with that horn, but again, like playing a Kirby. I am keeping it for now, and using it when I need the extra sound. It is all a trade-off. Good mouthpieces, yes. Incredible, no. The best to use exclusively, probably not.
6/4 Lyon & Healy C (1904)
5/4 Alexander Emperor BBb (1917)
4/4 Amati Kraslice C
3/4 Mirafone 184 C
1/2 Yamaha YBB 103
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