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Wessex Gnagey vs Eastman Eb. Which is better?

Postby Davidus1 » Fri May 17, 2019 9:16 pm

Hello,

Any owners of a Gnagey Eb that have played the Eastman Eb? Curious how they compare and what the thoughts on each are. I don't know that we've had that many comments about the Gnagey. All comments appreciated.
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Re: Wessex Gnagey vs Eastman Eb. Which is better?

Postby Ltrain » Mon May 20, 2019 12:16 am

Apples vs Oranges...

4P+1R vs 4P comp.

A more fair comparison would be Wessex Cavalry vs Eastman 853...

Build quality of the Eastman will win hands down.
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Re: Wessex Gnagey vs Eastman Eb. Which is better?

Postby Patrase » Mon May 20, 2019 3:53 am

I have never played the Eastman, but re the Gnagey:

The valve ergonomics are good, relatively sort stroke, relatively close together. Slides are easy to reach. I did find the second valve slide filled with water pretty quickly.

Instrument has a killer low range. Easier to nail than compensating Eb tubas I have played.

A band friend played a Gnagey against his Norwegian Star and said the Star had a better high range but the Gnagey had better low range. He normally uses a pt 65, so with a pt64 you could probably improve the high range on the Gnagey.

The lower range fingering on any 4+1 Eb isn't as easy as a compensating tuba, IMHO, so if the Eastman is compensating then fingering will be easier, if the third valve compensating loop is long enough. I own a 4+1 Eb tuba and if I played it more then would convert to a 6 valve configuration option. So guess I am a bit weird in that regard as no one else seems to do that.


But standard disclaimer - play them both. Specifically my advice is play them both with a tuning drone and as many different mouthpeices as you can supply/beg/borrow/steal and see which one you can play best in tune with any of those mouthpieces. Focus on how well the 2nd, 3rd and 4th partials are in tune in particular. Whichever has those lined up nicely would be the one to get, assuming alternate fingering brings 5th partial in tune (if out of tune) and the higher partials are manageable.
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Re: Wessex Gnagey vs Eastman Eb. Which is better?

Postby Davidus1 » Mon May 20, 2019 9:12 am

Ltrain wrote:Apples vs Oranges...

4P+1R vs 4P comp.

A more fair comparison would be Wessex Cavalry vs Eastman 853...

Build quality of the Eastman will win hands down.


That's not the comparison that I asked about. Not interested in the Cavalry. I suspected the Eastman build was better and appreciate that info.
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Re: Wessex Gnagey vs Eastman Eb. Which is better?

Postby Davidus1 » Mon May 20, 2019 9:14 am

Patrase wrote:I have never played the Eastman, but re the Gnagey:

The valve ergonomics are good, relatively sort stroke, relatively close together. Slides are easy to reach. I did find the second valve slide filled with water pretty quickly.

Instrument has a killer low range. Easier to nail than compensating Eb tubas I have played.

A band friend played a Gnagey against his Norwegian Star and said the Star had a better high range but the Gnagey had better low range. He normally uses a pt 65, so with a pt64 you could probably improve the high range on the Gnagey.

The lower range fingering on any 4+1 Eb isn't as easy as a compensating tuba, IMHO, so if the Eastman is compensating then fingering will be easier, if the third valve compensating loop is long enough. I own a 4+1 Eb tuba and if I played it more then would convert to a 6 valve configuration option. So guess I am a bit weird in that regard as no one else seems to do that.

Thanks for the information. Much appreciated. This is what I was looking for. Haven't really seen that much about the Gnagey, especially lately and am curious what owners think of the horn. I won't be in a position to play them back to back unfortunately.


But standard disclaimer - play them both. Specifically my advice is play them both with a tuning drone and as many different mouthpeices as you can supply/beg/borrow/steal and see which one you can play best in tune with any of those mouthpieces. Focus on how well the 2nd, 3rd and 4th partials are in tune in particular. Whichever has those lined up nicely would be the one to get, assuming alternate fingering brings 5th partial in tune (if out of tune) and the higher partials are manageable.
John 3:16


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Re: Wessex Gnagey vs Eastman Eb. Which is better?

Postby Douglas » Wed May 22, 2019 2:11 pm

In that price range, you may also want to look at a used Minel Weston 2141. They play really well and the quality is hard to argue with.
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Re: Wessex Gnagey vs Eastman Eb. Which is better?

Postby DouglasJB » Wed May 22, 2019 8:41 pm

Douglas wrote:In that price range, you may also want to look at a used Minel Weston 2141. They play really well and the quality is hard to argue with.


I agree 100%, great horns. I use mine for everything.
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Re: Wessex Gnagey vs Eastman Eb. Which is better?

Postby bh2001 » Sat May 25, 2019 10:35 pm

I own a Gnagey and have had a brief play of the Eastman and ..... You'll have to try them for yourself because they are both great, it will come down to personal preference. It also might be whether you are used to compensating or non-compensating. If you can't test them out go with your prefered system. I don't think you'll be sorry either way.
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Re: Wessex Gnagey vs Eastman Eb. Which is better?

Postby bloke » Sat May 25, 2019 10:56 pm

Davidus1 wrote:
Ltrain wrote:Apples vs Oranges...

4P+1R vs 4P comp.

A more fair comparison would be Wessex Cavalry vs Eastman 853...

Build quality of the Eastman will win hands down.


That's not the comparison that I asked about. Not interested in the Cavalry. I suspected the Eastman build was better and appreciate that info.


Since there are already off-topic posts in this thread...
(assuming what's desired is a front-action fully-chromatic Eb at a lower price point)
a used Besson 983 or used Willson 3400 would offer shorter lists of compromises, though finding these used at a happy combination of condition and price could involve biding one's time.
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Re: Wessex Gnagey vs Eastman Eb. Which is better?

Postby Mark Finley » Sat May 25, 2019 11:10 pm

there is a 983 that was just listed for a killer price.

Makes me wish I was in a buying mood
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