FINAL list of Mouthpiece upgrade Bookmark and Share

The bulk of the musical talk

FINAL list of Mouthpiece upgrade

Postby TheTuba » Sat Feb 10, 2018 6:41 pm

So I am currently searching for a funnel shaped mouthpiece. I narrowed the list down to :

PT/RT 50 or 48

Denis Wick 1L

Laskey 30H

Which one of these give the biggest, darkest sound?

I will be using it for solo playing on BBb tubas.

Please reply!
Thanks,
-Raghul :tuba:
Still searching for a 8/4 EEb
I mean if you want to, you can buy me the tuba in my name :P
If you're selling a good BBb or CC 5/4 or large 4/4 with 5 valves in 2021 under 6,000, please, contact me!
TheTuba
3 valves
3 valves
 
Posts: 329
Joined: Sun Dec 10, 2017 10:02 pm

Re: FINAL list of Mouthpiece upgrade

Postby Peach » Sat Feb 10, 2018 6:52 pm

They're all fine, just pick one, preferably after you've tried them.

Of the 3 I'd say the pt50 is pretty big for most solo work.
Peach
User avatar
Peach
4 valves
4 valves
 
Posts: 664
Joined: Thu Mar 17, 2005 9:42 am
Location: London, UK

Re: FINAL list of Mouthpiece upgrade

Postby cktuba » Sat Feb 10, 2018 8:05 pm

Those are all good mouthpieces. The question is which one fits you and your horn the best. And (unfortunately) that can be a moving target as you change as a player or if you change instruments.
Image
User avatar
cktuba
6 valves
6 valves
 
Posts: 2223
Joined: Fri Mar 19, 2004 1:17 am
Location: A department store freeing a man trapped inside what I believe to be a "Martin Mammoth."

Re: FINAL list of Mouthpiece upgrade

Postby Donn » Sat Feb 10, 2018 10:19 pm

Peach wrote:Of the 3 I'd say the pt50 is pretty big for most solo work.


Couldn't the same be said for Denis Wick 1L? I've never seen one, but from what little I've read ...
User avatar
Donn
TubeNet Sponsor
TubeNet Sponsor
 
Posts: 5281
Joined: Fri Aug 19, 2005 3:58 pm
Location: Seattle, ☯

Re: FINAL list of Mouthpiece upgrade

Postby TheTuba » Sat Feb 10, 2018 10:38 pm

Thanks for the replies!

to add more, out of the three mouthpieces, I want the one that sounds the darkest and the most potential for a big sound

-Raghul
Still searching for a 8/4 EEb
I mean if you want to, you can buy me the tuba in my name :P
If you're selling a good BBb or CC 5/4 or large 4/4 with 5 valves in 2021 under 6,000, please, contact me!
TheTuba
3 valves
3 valves
 
Posts: 329
Joined: Sun Dec 10, 2017 10:02 pm

Re: FINAL list of Mouthpiece upgrade

Postby Mark Finley » Sat Feb 10, 2018 11:04 pm

Here's the deal. The best mouthpiece in the world won't help you if there are other issues with your playing. We don't know if you play with tension in your throat, closed teeth, or anything else that would kill the tone before it ever gets to the mouthpiece
User avatar
Mark Finley
Low Brass Teacher
Low Brass Teacher
 
Posts: 4946
Joined: Fri Mar 19, 2004 12:08 am
Location: Arlington TX

Re: FINAL list of Mouthpiece upgrade

Postby Ken Crawford » Sun Feb 11, 2018 10:05 am

A mouthpiece won't give you a big sound. A big sound can be had on any of the mouthpieces you listed, and many others. The sound you want has to come from your mind and proper physical execution. This or that mouthpiece will only potentially make it easier to get the sound you already have in your head.
User avatar
Ken Crawford
4 valves
4 valves
 
Posts: 696
Joined: Sat Jun 23, 2012 10:45 am
Location: Rexburg, ID

Re: FINAL list of Mouthpiece upgrade

Postby pauvog1 » Sun Feb 11, 2018 11:47 am

Why those 4? What do you have now? What are you looking to change about your mp set up? What instrument do you play on? Are you looking for a solo or ensemble mp, or an all around mp? Answers to these "may" help you get better advice.

Lots of people like and use all of those models. Best bet is to try them out to see which you like best. Tone quality and quantity are more influnced by what the player puts into the mouthpiece, than the mouthpiece itself.

If I were locked in on a couple specific models, I'd look for the 1 or 2 I could find cheapest, in good condition and then sell of whichever I didn't like so, I could go along to the next.
Kalison DS
B&S PT-18p (MRP F)
pauvog1
4 valves
4 valves
 
Posts: 924
Joined: Sun Aug 02, 2009 11:13 am

Re: FINAL list of Mouthpiece upgrade

Postby bort » Sun Feb 11, 2018 12:01 pm

Buy the Laskey and play the crap out of it. There really isn't a definitive and we here, but the Laskey should not let you down.

If you are a student looking to improve your playing, you should have a good mouthpiece. You should also not switch mouthpieces while you are learning to play, in my opinion. There is just too much change happening in your playing, you need the mouthpiece and tuba to be constant.
B&S 4198 (PT-7P)
User avatar
bort
6 valves
6 valves
 
Posts: 9561
Joined: Wed Sep 22, 2004 11:08 pm
Location: Minneapolis, Minnesota

Re: FINAL list of Mouthpiece upgrade

Postby Mark Finley » Sun Feb 11, 2018 12:10 pm

I had a student's parent contact me about a mouthpiece "upgrade" for both of his sons. The 7th grade euphonium player was playing a 6 1/2 AL, so that was easy, I told him he could not go wrong with either the 51d or a wick 4ay. For his freshman tuba player, that was more difficult. He was playing on a full sized helleburg, so I brought in several different mouthpieces for him to check out. The only one that was an upgrade over what he already had was the Sellmansberger symphony, so I told the dad if he wants to splurge go ahead, but at this point it's not that urgent. Mouthpieces rarely make a huge difference unless you are playing on one way too small or too big already
User avatar
Mark Finley
Low Brass Teacher
Low Brass Teacher
 
Posts: 4946
Joined: Fri Mar 19, 2004 12:08 am
Location: Arlington TX

Re: FINAL list of Mouthpiece upgrade

Postby Leland » Sun Feb 11, 2018 12:53 pm

Mark Finley wrote:Here's the deal. The best mouthpiece in the world won't help you if there are other issues with your playing. We don't know if you play with tension in your throat, closed teeth, or anything else that would kill the tone before it ever gets to the mouthpiece

Word. :tuba:

And besides, for solo stuff, I usually went with a shallower mouthpiece instead of my PT50, because I wanted a brighter, more lively sound for less effort.
User avatar
Leland
pro musician
pro musician
 
Posts: 1581
Joined: Fri Mar 19, 2004 12:54 pm
Location: Washington, DC

Re: FINAL list of Mouthpiece upgrade

Postby the elephant » Sun Feb 11, 2018 1:31 pm

Buy an accepted good all-around mouthpiece, stop fooling with mouthpieces for good at that point for at least a few years. Then spend the time learning to play on that mouthpiece. The more you mess with equipment the more you mess with your head. At some point, to be a good player you need to work on being a good player and stop thinking about equipment. You have what you have. Pining over some grass-is-greener mouthpiece with a half-millimeter wider throat is a waste of time and a disservice to yourself.

Get a mouthpiece. Stop wishing about mouthpieces. Practice until that mouthpiece is actually "holding you back" — which is actually very rare, unless you have some bizarre and unusual dental structure, lip or tongue shape or you have some ridiculously large or small mouthpiece.

You are heading down a rabbit hole where you will not get much better because you are constantly messing with your setup. Learn to play FIRST.

As my teacher said, "Buy a mouthpiece, shut up about mouthpieces, and learn to play that mouthpiece."

And I agree with Leland completely. A bucket is NOT what you want for solo work. You will sound like mud to the audience.
Image
User avatar
the elephant
Papa Legba
Papa Legba
 
Posts: 13773
Joined: Wed Apr 07, 2004 8:38 pm
Location: 404 Not Found

Re: FINAL list of Mouthpiece upgrade

Postby bloke » Sun Feb 11, 2018 2:11 pm

This post (what I am about to type below) could easily come off sounding like an advertisement to "buy my stuff". It is not.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

For decades, I went from this-to-that-to-the-next mouthpiece as attempts to find a contrabass tuba mouthpiece that worked for me. I'm not a butterfly; most all of them were (in my view, today) not particularly good.
Admittedly, I also shuffled through a bunch of mediocre (at those times: about the best available) contrabass tubas as well. :|

In spite of the mediocre/unsuitable mouthpieces and mediocre/unsuitable tubas, I continued to become a better player, and (when motivated to practice and show up) often was promoted in auditions to the "finalist" level (which means nothing, btw...because finalists walk home with nothing more than those who were eliminated in the first rounds...but that's ANOTHER topic).

OK... (as an example) I personally consider the Bach 24AW design to be one of the worst on the planet...and those you've listed: none of them excite me, either... but I've heard some players get some really nice sounds out of them - just as I got some really nice sounds out of some (what I consider to be not-that-good) mouthpieces in past decades.

Get something that seems to have a "normal" cup, a "normal" rim, a "normal" throat, and a "normal" back-bore. If you're not sure that the parameters of "normal" are in any of those instances, ask someone (not "we the anonymous freak jury of TubeNet") near you who is identified widely as an "expert". (They may be offtrack as well, but there's less likelihood of it.)

Everyone has a rear end, and everyone has an opinion...so here are a few of mine:
rim - I like a rim shape that does NOT "anchor" itself to my face. Such a rim is also required to be "not all scratched up".
cup shape - I like a cup shape that makes it easy for me to produce a pleasant sound...right off the bat...and not after some extensive so-called "warm-up".
throat size - Ignoring special throat tapers, I like a throat size that is much closer to 8mm than to 9. A bit larger than 8 is fine. 9 begins to convert mouthpieces (to MY PERSONAL TASTES) into vacuum cleaners.
back-bore shape - This, probably, is the least important of the four features of a mouthpiece, but is still important. It subtly effects resonance, but can have an epic effect on low range response (as many players and mouthpiece makers do not seem to understand this, and substitute "huge throats" for "properly-shaped back-bores" as an attempt to improve low range response).
material - brass/stainless steel are both great. Brass is soft/malleable - thus very easily scratched, and requires plating - which eventually wears off. Stainless steel is hard, is very nearly the same density as brass, is considerably more difficult to scratch and (assuming no allergy) requires no plating. Brass mouthpieces (even with the plating process) are much less expensive to make, so most mouthpieces tend to be brass. Most makers try to keep their prices hoving below/at/a-bit-above $100 (ref: 2018), so the vast majority of tuba mouthpieces are brass, plated, and one-piece.

:|
User avatar
bloke
musician/technician/innovator
musician/technician/innovator
 
Posts: 41604
Joined: Sat May 08, 2004 6:04 pm
Location: western Tennessee

Re: FINAL list of Mouthpiece upgrade

Postby Peach » Sun Feb 11, 2018 5:35 pm

Donn wrote:
Peach wrote:Of the 3 I'd say the pt50 is pretty big for most solo work.


Couldn't the same be said for Denis Wick 1L? I've never seen one, but from what little I've read ...


1L hardly small, but roughly the same size as a Helleberg 120. Wick's comparisons (PT88 etc) are well off I would say.
Peach
User avatar
Peach
4 valves
4 valves
 
Posts: 664
Joined: Thu Mar 17, 2005 9:42 am
Location: London, UK

Re: FINAL list of Mouthpiece upgrade

Postby bloke » Sun Feb 11, 2018 7:13 pm

Peach wrote:
Donn wrote:
Peach wrote:Of the 3 I'd say the pt50 is pretty big for most solo work.


Couldn't the same be said for Denis Wick 1L? I've never seen one, but from what little I've read ...


1L hardly small, but roughly the same size as a Helleberg 120. Wick's comparisons (PT88 etc) are well off I would say.


I recall - years-and-years ago, when I first had access to selling B&H and Buffet products (when they were oddly connected) ordering a "Wick 1" tuba mouthpiece (I was was impressed with how well the larger tenor trombone Wick mouthpieces placed, and thought "wow...This has to be just as good"...but not.

The 1 (for me) never really did much - i.e. "didn't make a pleasant sound without an extensive 'warm-up' " (per my list in my previous post).

None of my own mouthpieces are gigantic (without topping them off with the "Profundo" rims or cup extenders), but the 1 (being the largest of the Wick offerings) certainly isn't particularly large.
I tend to view the line (outside of them not offering a particularly pleasant sound easily) as
1 - medium large
2 - medium
3 - medium small
4 - small
...and as (ref. a boutique line of mouthpieces that comes to mind) "a trombone player's concepts of tuba mouthpieces"...though Stephen - surely - had a great deal to due with development of the tuba mouthpiece models.
User avatar
bloke
musician/technician/innovator
musician/technician/innovator
 
Posts: 41604
Joined: Sat May 08, 2004 6:04 pm
Location: western Tennessee

Re: FINAL list of Mouthpiece upgrade

Postby pauvog1 » Sun Feb 11, 2018 9:16 pm

Kalison DS
B&S PT-18p (MRP F)
pauvog1
4 valves
4 valves
 
Posts: 924
Joined: Sun Aug 02, 2009 11:13 am

Re: FINAL list of Mouthpiece upgrade

Postby Donn » Sun Feb 11, 2018 9:47 pm

Well, the story on the largeness of the Denis Wick 1L, that I've seen, has been more about how deep it is, than how wide. But like I say, haven't seen one.

Some praise its virtues, others evidently don't ... if that meant anything, I guess we'd all be playing the same mouthpiece.
User avatar
Donn
TubeNet Sponsor
TubeNet Sponsor
 
Posts: 5281
Joined: Fri Aug 19, 2005 3:58 pm
Location: Seattle, ☯

Re: FINAL list of Mouthpiece upgrade

Postby doublebuzzing » Sun Feb 11, 2018 10:32 pm

I played the 1L for awhile and found it quite similar to the Conn Helleberg 120. The rim seemed very similar and I believe the cup and throat were similar as well. The rim is 32.5mm which is great for me.
doublebuzzing
3 valves
3 valves
 
Posts: 333
Joined: Thu Dec 24, 2009 8:03 pm

Re: FINAL list of Mouthpiece upgrade

Postby royjohn » Mon Feb 12, 2018 3:04 am

IDK why some are so disparaging of the TNFJ in this thread, as the recommendations here make pretty good sense and are pretty much agreed in sentiment.

Looking at the OP's request (biggest, darkest tone) and the specs of the mpcs mentioned, I would go with the PT-50, since it seems like it is larger than the other two and is a larger cup and more funnel shaped than the PT-48 (which is called "pear shaped") even though the PT-48 has a larger ID. The throat is also a little smaller than that on the Wick, probably a good thing.

I'd also note that several folks pointed out that, for solo playing, these mpcs are probably too big and will not produce a nimble, bright enough sound. Somebody said they'll sound "like mud."

Pardon my pontification, but in many years as a professional counselor, I learned that there is only so much you can tell most young people. So if the OP is hell bent on the biggest, darkest mpc he can find, let's let him go for it and he can figure it out later, when someone tells him what he sounds like. I think the operative saying is "You can lead a horse to water, but you can break his neck trying to get him to drink." It's always possible to sell your mpc and get another.

To OP: I do have a Wick 1L that I can send you to try.
royjohn
royjohn
3 valves
3 valves
 
Posts: 393
Joined: Wed Feb 28, 2007 12:13 pm
Location: Knoxville, TN

Re: FINAL list of Mouthpiece upgrade

Postby the elephant » Mon Feb 12, 2018 7:28 am

royjohn wrote:Pardon my pontification, but in many years as a professional counselor...


Pardon my pontification, but, on average, about how many high school tuba players have you taught every week for the past three decades of your life? Asking for a friend... :lol:
Image
User avatar
the elephant
Papa Legba
Papa Legba
 
Posts: 13773
Joined: Wed Apr 07, 2004 8:38 pm
Location: 404 Not Found

Next

Return to TubeNet

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Frank Ortega, Google [Bot], Majestic-12 [Bot], Micah Everett, paulver and 24 guests