Buying Tubas for Middle School Band:King 2341W or Yamaha 641 Bookmark and Share

The bulk of the musical talk

Buying Tubas for Middle School Band:King 2341W or Yamaha 641

Postby bman94 » Mon Oct 01, 2018 6:14 pm

Band director here and amateur Tuba player (primary is Euphonium). I have the opportunity to buy some more instruments so of course I want to invest in some more Tubas. What should I default to? King 2341W or the Yamaha 641?

We own 12 Tubas already, but only 4 fulk sized ones. 2 of the full sized ones are the Yamaha 641s but I'm really concerned about upkeep for Rotary Tubas. The ones we have currently were purchased in 2007 and are already in rough shape.

Anybody that has played the King 2341W can tell me their impressions on it? I like the mellow sound of the Yamaha but it seems to get lost in the ensemble at times with my students not being able to fill it up? What should I go with? (Also I'm slightly impartial to the Yamahas just from a visual standpoint)
bman94
lurker
lurker
 
Posts: 5
Joined: Sat Apr 15, 2017 9:11 pm

Re: Buying Tubas for Middle School Band:King 2341W or Yamaha

Postby bigtubby » Mon Oct 01, 2018 6:53 pm

IMHO the King 12xx/23xx tubas are really hard to beat in playability, durability and maintenance cost. The definition of a solid 4/4 tuba.

YMMV
American sailboats, airplanes, banjos, guitars and flutes ...
Italian motorcycles and cars ...
German cameras and tubas ...
Life is Good.
User avatar
bigtubby
4 valves
4 valves
 
Posts: 699
Joined: Mon Jan 07, 2013 10:43 pm
Location: Ohio

Re: Buying Tubas for Middle School Band:King 2341W or Yamaha

Postby The Big Ben » Mon Oct 01, 2018 9:01 pm

There are quite a few Yamaha 321s in use in the high schools and middle schools around me. They seem to be pretty tough. You might talk to the people who would be repairing your horns to see if they have suggestions.
User avatar
The Big Ben
6 valves
6 valves
 
Posts: 2977
Joined: Sat Dec 16, 2006 12:54 pm
Location: Port Townsend, WA

Re: Buying Tubas for Middle School Band:King 2341W or Yamaha

Postby Art Hovey » Mon Oct 01, 2018 11:47 pm

Get the Kings. Or save a few bucks and get the Eastman King clones.
Eastman also makes a smaller tuba ("3/4" size) with 4 front pistons identical to the King 2341 valve section.
In my opinion it is an ideal tuba for middle school kids who may not yet be big enough for either of the models you mentioned.
I have one myself and like it a lot.
The Yamaha 641s that I have seen students using have rather weak low register. More than one of my younger students trying for a low F put the right finger down but hit a low G instead. When I try it myself I can hit a perfectly good low F, but can lip it up to G with very little effort.
That does not happen with the Kings and Eastman King clones.
User avatar
Art Hovey
pro musician
pro musician
 
Posts: 1379
Joined: Sun May 02, 2004 12:28 am
Location: Connecticut

Re: Buying Tubas for Middle School Band:King 2341W or Yamaha

Postby Mark Finley » Mon Oct 01, 2018 11:55 pm

The 641 is the worst mainstream tuba on the planet. Please stop buying them and maybe yamaha would actually be forced to make something decent
User avatar
Mark Finley
Low Brass Teacher
Low Brass Teacher
 
Posts: 4955
Joined: Fri Mar 19, 2004 12:08 am
Location: Arlington TX

Re: Buying Tubas for Middle School Band:King 2341W or Yamaha

Postby pauvog1 » Tue Oct 02, 2018 8:21 am

I'd get the Eastman clone of a king before the actual king.

Id also look at the slightly smaller 4 valve JP models for middle school kids.
Kalison DS
B&S PT-18p (MRP F)
Mouthpieces for sale: viewtopic.php?f=4&t=90224
pauvog1
4 valves
4 valves
 
Posts: 940
Joined: Sun Aug 02, 2009 11:13 am

Re: Buying Tubas for Middle School Band:King 2341W or Yamaha

Postby iiipopes » Tue Oct 02, 2018 9:19 am

The Big Ben wrote:There are quite a few Yamaha 321s in use in the high schools and middle schools around me. They seem to be pretty tough. You might talk to the people who would be repairing your horns to see if they have suggestions.

Except for the valve guides, which break if you look at them wrong or aren't as careful as a professional in re-inserting the valve after oiling. Then they are unplayable until fixed.
"Bessophone" w/ 2-piece Imperial Blokepiece,
Lexan 32.6 Modified Helleberg rim & modified .080 extender
Wessex BR115 w/ Wick Ultra SMB6
King Super 20 trumpet w/ Bach 3C/76
Fanned fret bass and electric guitars
User avatar
iiipopes
Utility Infielder
Utility Infielder
 
Posts: 7831
Joined: Tue Sep 06, 2005 1:10 am

Re: Buying Tubas for Middle School Band:King 2341W or Yamaha

Postby Sam Gnagey » Tue Oct 02, 2018 9:37 am

You might want to consider the Yamaha YBB621 which is much more manageable for Junior High students. I believe it would stand up to middle school usage than those mentioned above and still provide a 4-valve BBb experience.
Sam Gnagey
TubeNet Sponsor
TubeNet Sponsor
 
Posts: 554
Joined: Sun Mar 21, 2004 10:09 am
Location: Columbia City, Indiana

Re: Buying Tubas for Middle School Band:King 2341W or Yamaha

Postby Davidus1 » Tue Oct 02, 2018 1:03 pm

Mark Finley wrote:The 641 is the worst mainstream tuba on the planet. Please stop buying them and maybe yamaha would actually be forced to make something decent


+1. I really dislike the 641. I would recommend the Kings or Eastman or even a Conn 5j.
John 3:16

Miraphone 186 BBb
Mack Brass 200S BBb
Yamaha YSL-630 .525 Trombone
Conn 15I Euphonium
Mack Brass Euphonium
Conn Victor 5H Trombone
Yamaha Trombone YSL354
Davidus1
bugler
bugler
 
Posts: 145
Joined: Sat Jun 21, 2008 2:11 pm
Location: St. Louis, Missouri

Re: Buying Tubas for Middle School Band:King 2341W or Yamaha

Postby bort » Tue Oct 02, 2018 1:45 pm

iiipopes wrote:
The Big Ben wrote:There are quite a few Yamaha 321s in use in the high schools and middle schools around me. They seem to be pretty tough. You might talk to the people who would be repairing your horns to see if they have suggestions.

Except for the valve guides, which break if you look at them wrong or aren't as careful as a professional in re-inserting the valve after oiling. Then they are unplayable until fixed.


Unplayable? Ha! When I was in HS, I just had to deal with it and be real careful to press the valve up and down. There was no budget for new valve guides (I'm serious). If that meant the tuba was unplayable... there would have been no tuba for bort to play.
B&S 4198 (PT-7P)
User avatar
bort
6 valves
6 valves
 
Posts: 9606
Joined: Wed Sep 22, 2004 11:08 pm
Location: Minneapolis, Minnesota

Re: Buying Tubas for Middle School Band:King 2341W or Yamaha

Postby The Big Ben » Tue Oct 02, 2018 1:50 pm

iiipopes wrote:
The Big Ben wrote:There are quite a few Yamaha 321s in use in the high schools and middle schools around me. They seem to be pretty tough. You might talk to the people who would be repairing your horns to see if they have suggestions.

Except for the valve guides, which break if you look at them wrong or aren't as careful as a professional in re-inserting the valve after oiling. Then they are unplayable until fixed.

Again, it would be a good idea to talk to the people who will be repairing them. About any horn choice.
User avatar
The Big Ben
6 valves
6 valves
 
Posts: 2977
Joined: Sat Dec 16, 2006 12:54 pm
Location: Port Townsend, WA

Re: Buying Tubas for Middle School Band:King 2341W or Yamaha

Postby Bill Troiano » Tue Oct 02, 2018 2:13 pm

I think those 321's are pretty awkward to hold, especially for a middle school sized kid. They're also a bit demanding for air usage. I was always a big fan of the 2341 for any age level and any size player.
Bill Troiano
5 valves
5 valves
 
Posts: 1008
Joined: Fri Mar 19, 2004 12:08 am
Location: Cedar Park, TX

Re: Buying Tubas for Middle School Band:King 2341W or Yamaha

Postby Mark Finley » Tue Oct 02, 2018 2:31 pm

I taught for a school once that used the 2341 as a beginner tuba. It worked but it wasn't a fan of it for that application
User avatar
Mark Finley
Low Brass Teacher
Low Brass Teacher
 
Posts: 4955
Joined: Fri Mar 19, 2004 12:08 am
Location: Arlington TX

Re: Buying Tubas for Middle School Band:King 2341W or Yamaha

Postby tofu » Tue Oct 02, 2018 2:41 pm

What horn is the 641 a clone of?
User avatar
tofu
5 valves
5 valves
 
Posts: 1855
Joined: Mon Mar 22, 2004 12:59 am
Location: One toke over the line...

Re: Buying Tubas for Middle School Band:King 2341W or Yamaha

Postby timayer » Tue Oct 02, 2018 2:42 pm

I had a student with a school-owned 641 once. We spent a lot of time on tone production, and it never seemed to get there. I played the horn for about 30 seconds, at which point I apologized for spending so much time on tone production and concentrated on different aspects of technique for the rest of the school year. Calling the low register unplayable is being generous.

I played a YBB103 throughout middle school and never had an issue with it. But I was also a middle school player at the time, so take that for what it's worth. I started out 6th grade at 4'10" and had to have it on its side to reach the mouthpiece, and it worked fine. And in 8th grade I was 5'10" and it was still comfortable. I played the upright version for marching band in high school and never had issues with it even when using it for a sit-down tuba.

The 321s my high school had were always fine, though pretty big. I couldn't have handled it in middle school.

Never played the King or any clones.
timayer
bugler
bugler
 
Posts: 135
Joined: Fri Mar 19, 2004 1:58 am
Location: Juneau, AK

Re: Buying Tubas for Middle School Band:King 2341W or Yamaha

Postby Mark Finley » Tue Oct 02, 2018 3:07 pm

The yamaha is a clone of an Alex design
Miraphones are clones of a cerveny design

People have been playing clones for decades, they just didn't know it.
User avatar
Mark Finley
Low Brass Teacher
Low Brass Teacher
 
Posts: 4955
Joined: Fri Mar 19, 2004 12:08 am
Location: Arlington TX

Re: Buying Tubas for Middle School Band:King 2341W or Yamaha

Postby timayer » Tue Oct 02, 2018 3:12 pm

Mark Finley wrote:People have been playing clones for decades, they just didn't know it.


This is making me think of Cylons...
timayer
bugler
bugler
 
Posts: 135
Joined: Fri Mar 19, 2004 1:58 am
Location: Juneau, AK

Re: Buying Tubas for Middle School Band:King 2341W or Yamaha

Postby Voisi1ev » Tue Oct 02, 2018 3:38 pm

I've never figured out the appeal of a 321. Even tall kids have trouble playing it comfortably.

Have a 2341 for my kiddos. Works great. Big sound. Really good ergonomically for MS and HS Kids.
User avatar
Voisi1ev
bugler
bugler
 
Posts: 132
Joined: Fri Jul 03, 2015 11:43 am
Location: Michigan

Re: Buying Tubas for Middle School Band:King 2341W or Yamaha

Postby iiipopes » Wed Oct 03, 2018 11:55 am

bort wrote:
iiipopes wrote:
The Big Ben wrote:There are quite a few Yamaha 321s in use in the high schools and middle schools around me. They seem to be pretty tough. You might talk to the people who would be repairing your horns to see if they have suggestions.

Except for the valve guides, which break if you look at them wrong or aren't as careful as a professional in re-inserting the valve after oiling. Then they are unplayable until fixed.


Unplayable? Ha! When I was in HS, I just had to deal with it and be real careful to press the valve up and down. There was no budget for new valve guides (I'm serious). If that meant the tuba was unplayable... there would have been no tuba for bort to play.

You are right. A couple of years ago one of the regional private teachers invited a couple of players to join us for Memorial Day. They brought their Yammies. They were having to align the valves so often that it is a wonder they played any notes at all.
"Bessophone" w/ 2-piece Imperial Blokepiece,
Lexan 32.6 Modified Helleberg rim & modified .080 extender
Wessex BR115 w/ Wick Ultra SMB6
King Super 20 trumpet w/ Bach 3C/76
Fanned fret bass and electric guitars
User avatar
iiipopes
Utility Infielder
Utility Infielder
 
Posts: 7831
Joined: Tue Sep 06, 2005 1:10 am

Re: Buying Tubas for Middle School Band:King 2341W or Yamaha

Postby iiipopes » Wed Oct 03, 2018 11:56 am

bigtubby wrote:IMHO the King 12xx/23xx tubas are really hard to beat in playability, durability and maintenance cost. The definition of a solid 4/4 tuba.
YMMV

And since they have been made in essentially the same form for over a century, any tech worth his/her tools should have plenty of crash parts in their morgue.
"Bessophone" w/ 2-piece Imperial Blokepiece,
Lexan 32.6 Modified Helleberg rim & modified .080 extender
Wessex BR115 w/ Wick Ultra SMB6
King Super 20 trumpet w/ Bach 3C/76
Fanned fret bass and electric guitars
User avatar
iiipopes
Utility Infielder
Utility Infielder
 
Posts: 7831
Joined: Tue Sep 06, 2005 1:10 am

Next

Return to TubeNet

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: NCSUSousa and 25 guests