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Thread: looking for compensating euphonium for my son

  1. looking for compensating euphonium for my son

    hello,
    my 14 year old wants his own compensating euphonium. we've been looking online for the best deals. he likes this one
    http://www.ebay.com/itm/BESSON-PROFE...item4ac82bc614
    any opinions? our local music store suggested an Eastman which would be around $5000. we were hoping to spending $3000 or less. they talked us out of a tuba exchange one. I loved those prices! any tips for our search?
    thanks.

  2. #2
    Welcome to the forum! I like your idea of spending $3k or less. Because your son is 14, his tastes and abilities could change a LOT over the next several years. This may not be the best time to pick up a really expensive horn.

    So at $3k you have a few choices. I suggest you look around the existing posts in the Euph Brands category. Look at comments about the Dillon and Tuba Exchange branded compensating euphoniums. You'll see lots of posts about the Schiller Elite, and also look into Mack. All those good be found new within your budget.

    You might also look at the JP Sterling:
    http://www.dfmusicinc.com/marketplac.../184.asp?MID=5

    And of course there are used instruments now and then, like the one you linked to. A used Besson can be a pretty good choice. They are usually built like tanks and play well.

    Good luck!
    Dave Werden (ASCAP)
    Euphonium Soloist, U.S. Coast Guard Band, retired
    Adams Artist (Adams E3)
    YouTube: dwerden
    Facebook: davewerden
    Twitter: davewerden
    Instagram: davewerdeneuphonium

  3. #3
    You might also check out an article I wrote about this exact topic. It is general advice, not geared to specific brands, but it may prove helpful as you look around:

    Buying an Inexpensive Euphonium
    Dave Werden (ASCAP)
    Euphonium Soloist, U.S. Coast Guard Band, retired
    Adams Artist (Adams E3)
    YouTube: dwerden
    Facebook: davewerden
    Twitter: davewerden
    Instagram: davewerdeneuphonium

  4. #4
    There are also a handful of horns in the For Sale section that fall under your price mark *cough cough*

  5. thank you all for the wonderful information! I have no musical abilities so reading this forum has felt like reading Chinese at times. after spending a lot of time researching all these brands and your opinions, I feel like a schiller elite or a mack would be a good choice for my son. however, there is a besson for sale here that he truly wants. thanks for leading me to the for sale section! so, any opinion of which way to go? he has his mind made up but I just want to make sure we are making the right investment. thanks!

  6. #6
    Well, one thought would be this:

    We're talking about a 14-year-old who will be surrounded by others of the same age and coordination. They will be moving horns, music stands, and other blunt objects around. Also, your son will need to take the valves out from time to time for cleaning and oiling. Now consider that most Bessons are built like tanks, while I think the Schiller/etc. brands are not as well armored. And there have been comments about the Schiller/etc. horns having "fussy" threads on the valve caps (easy to cross thread). All that would lead one toward the Besson.

    Another thought to at least consider is the incentive value of the horn itself. Besson is a professional brand. If the used one is in good shape, it may offer him a sense of pride, which will lead to more practicing probably. If it looks beat-up, no matter how well it plays, then he might be more eager to dig in and practice with a shiny new (if a little more fragile) Schiller/etc.

    If he is already exciting about the Besson here, then that argues pretty hard for the Besson in my humble opinion.
    Dave Werden (ASCAP)
    Euphonium Soloist, U.S. Coast Guard Band, retired
    Adams Artist (Adams E3)
    YouTube: dwerden
    Facebook: davewerden
    Twitter: davewerden
    Instagram: davewerdeneuphonium

  7. thank you for the quick reply. between the besson listed here and this one http://www.ebay.com/itm/BESSON-EUPHO...item3f1973852e what do you think? the ebay one is older, from the 50's. I don't know what the differences are or if one is more desirable than the other.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    West Palm Beach, FL
    Posts
    3,262
    Dave Werden pointed out some excellent points on build quality on the Besson vs the cheaper, lighter Chinese horns. Quality or design of valve cap threads is very important too -- especially for younger musicians. I would opt for a used Besson myself.

    The horn you just spotted on ebay is a 3-valve compensator. It's a good horn and would be easier for a 14 y.o. to play (lighter and only 3 valves to be concerned with), but in not having a 4th valve would limit his range to the low 'E'.
    Rick Floyd
    Miraphone 5050 - Warburton Brandon Jones sig mpc
    YEP-641S (on long-term loan to grandson)
    Doug Elliott - 102 rim; I-cup; I-9 shank


    "Always play with a good tone, never louder than lovely, never softer than supported." - author unknown.
    Symphonic Band of the Palm Beaches
    Russian Christmas Music (Alfred Reed)
    El Cumbanchero (Rafael Hernández) cell phone video

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Central North Carolina
    Posts
    2,039
    As the owner of two Chines clone instruments -- both of which I'm very happy with -- I concur with the Besson recommendation here. The threads have gotten better on these, but I believe that the Besson would be less tempermental in this regard (and would also be well broken in) and would be more robust overall.
    Gary Merrill
    Wessex EEb Bass tuba (Denis Wick 3XL)
    Mack Brass Compensating Euph (DE N106, Euph J, J9 euph)
    Amati Oval Euph (DE N106, Euph J, J6 euph)
    1924 Buescher 3-valve Eb tuba, modified Kelly 25
    Schiller American Heritage 7B clone bass trombone (DE LB K/K9/112 Lexan, Brass Ark MV50R)
    1947 Olds "Standard" trombone (Olds #3)

  10. #10
    It's been said that you can throw a Besson down a set of stairs and then take it to a gig. It's also been said that I'm selling a Besson, so...

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