I thought it would be nice to put in a nice comment about Chuck Levin's. As far as I'm concerned, they are THE place to go for your major equipment purchases. The prices are lower than you can find anywhere, and they are stocked with very friendly, highly knowledgeable staff. I love it that they do not play games with you on MAP (minimum advertised pricing) that I've seen from so many other retailers. Most people may not know it, but they are the largest music retailer in the US. And they achieved that status for a reason

This is not the place to go to try mouthpieces (they have a bare minimum of Bach and Schilke pieces in stock), anything other than the very basic of accessories, or to try horns that are not best sellers....they only typically stock the horns you can find everywhere...e.g., Yamaha 321/642 euphs, Bach 42/Conn 88H trombones. They have tons of pro Bach/Yamaha trumpets, etc. Sometimes you might find a Willson 2900 for sale. Anything else? They will give you a good price, but they will have to order it. Their website is very average for most of the things that we on this list would be interested in. And they still hand write most of their receipts!

But because they are such a huge retailer, they have many connections in the industry that can make a difference with some transactions. My Neo baritone is case in point. I was originally quoted a 90 day delivery. Then the owner, Alan Levin said the wait was extended to 9 months. He didn't think that was acceptable, so he called his contact in NY who had a horn they had only shown to retailers, and it was available. I doubt most dealers could have pulled this off, and offer me a huge discount on top of their already attractive price.

This is also a family owned business. Chuck Levin, the founder who passed away a few years ago, sold me my very first higher end instrument in 1986 when I was a junior in high school...it was a Bach 42BOLT trombone and it was $900. Except for a Besson Sovereign I purchased from Baltimore Brass (along with several Shires trombone components), all of the new stuff I've ever bought has come from them. One of their brass specialists is Lee Walkowich, who used to work for Rayburn in Boston, and who put together one of the best brass catalogs I've ever seen over 10 years ago. The co-owner Alan Levin is also very knowledgeable and very helpful. In summary, if you are sure of what you want in an instrument, I think you would be hard pressed to find a place better than this.