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Thread: Adams E2

  1. #1

    Adams E2

    I've noted much commentary on this site comparing Adams E1 and E3, but very little regarding Adams E2. It does come with a warning from most sales sites that it is a heavier horn and meant for the professional or capable amateur due to the .8 thickness, I suppose, and possibly other factors. Also notable that Matoniss favored it as the horn he'd choose (with trigger) if he were to go with an Adams (but he definitely fits the billing as a professional). Wondering if there are any Adams E2 owners out there who could shed some light on your experience with the horn and why you chose it over other Adams models.

  2. #2
    Aaron Vanderweele is the only Adams artist that I can think of that went with the E2 and, at the time, he said it was because it more closely matched the sound he was used to on his Prestige. He has since gone back to the Prestige and if you compare his sound from his Prestige videos to his Adams videos you can definitely hear a difference. The way it's been explained to me from others (and based on my own experience briefly playing an E2) is that the E2 is more in the Tuba realm of sound quality. "Tubby" or "cavernous" would be apt descriptions. Now that the E3 exists and can be made thicker than 0.6mm and customized with heavy caps, you can really dial in the sound you are looking for without FORCING the issue, as an E2 would. That being said, if your ideal sound is toward that range, an E2 would fit the bill.
    Yamaha Neo w/Trigger, Lacquer
    K&G 3.5D

  3. #3
    Thanks. Appreciate your response. By the way, do you know if the Prestige he went back to was the 2051 or the 2052? When Matoniss favored the E2 over the E3, he noted in part it was because playing the E3 super loud resulted in sound deterioration but not so with the E2; he couldn't "overblow" it.

  4. #4
    I believe he went back to his old horn, which was an English made 2052 - that is a guess though, it could be German. I found that I could overblow the E1 I used to own but can't overblow the E3. He's used to his heavy Sterling though, and so it makes some sense that the E2 would be a better match for him. In his recent comparison videos from the holidays I think I prefer the sound of him on his Sterling over both the Adams and the Jupiter. Did he make the permanent switch to XO?
    Yamaha Neo w/Trigger, Lacquer
    K&G 3.5D

  5. The E2's I have played feel most similar to the Miraphone 5050. My E3 is more like a new (German) Prestige 2052. My Sterling Virtuoso (300mm heavy bell) weighs almost as much as the E2 and 5050. It feels like a cross between the heavier horns in terms of ability to get dynamic range, but with the singing quality of the Prestige.

    Last edited by daruby; 02-21-2019 at 08:21 PM.
    Sterling Virtuoso 1052HS & Adams E3 Prototype 0.70 Top Sprung valves
    Sterling Virtuoso 1050HS baritone
    New England Brass Band
    Winchendon Winds/Townsend Military Band

  6. #6
    I believe Algirdas still uses his Sterling Virtuoso as his primary horn; interestingly enough, he uses a JP274S as his backup.

  7. #7
    My understanding of Adams' design for the E2 is that it was targeted more toward Willson users. And I found the solidity of the sound much like the Willson, but with a bit more of the color I like.

    At the 2014 ITEC a gentleman was looking for a replacement for his British Besson (New Standard / Imperial I think). He sounded nice on all the Adams horns he played (various E1 configs plus a couple E2), but the closest match was the E2 with its .80 brass. Bessons from the old days used brass that felt about like that weight, although I can't recall if I ever saw the measurement for what they used. In any case, to me the Adams E2 was a good fit for what he described as his goal.

    We all have individual wants and needs. In my case I was a sound bigot - I wanted something akin to the sound I got from my Sovereign, but wanted better intonation. That drew me to Sterling and later to Adams. Only after living with the Adams for a while did I realize what a benefit its easy & even response was to my playing! If I had known, that would also have been a serious factor, as long as the sound was there. That same sound-based stubbornness kept me from moving to Hirsbrunner, Willson, Miraphone, or Yamaha. They are all nice horns with many good points, but they just didn't quite have the sound I wanted.

    In the various discussions of artists switching brands, we should keep in mind that there can be one other reason for this - money. I personally know of three previous Sterling artists who were lured to Besson by a much larger artist-support budget. In previous posts and conversations I have said that if I were looking to really get out to tons of events in this country and elsewhere, I would need the financial support that only the larger companies can deliver. And if I thought that was the best career path for me, I'd have to switch to a brand with deeper pockets in this area (because I'm not independently wealthy!!). That would involve more serious testing of my other top choices and then negotiation. Once done, I'd have to change what I say a little bit. Now I can honesty say that I am playing the best horn I have ever tried - period. But if playing on a Besson/Willson/Miraphone/Yamaha, I would extol the virtues and why they are a good choice. I would not be able to make my ultimate comparative statement, but there is much, much good stuff to say about those other brands! When testing them over the years, I really enjoy blowing each of the ones I mentioned, so I would not feel too "chained" to my decision!
    Dave Werden (ASCAP)
    Euphonium Soloist, U.S. Coast Guard Band, retired
    Adams E3, Denis Wick 4AL (classic)
    Instructor of Euphonium and Tuba
    Twitter: davewerden
    Facebook: davewerden
    YouTube: dwerden
    Owner of,

  8. #8
    I agree with that - the E2 feels a lot like a Willson to me, and it has that same characteristic as a Willson where the timbre and especially articulations are relatively consistent across the whole spectrum of playing. In that sense I feel like it is very different than a Prestige which I think is a much more colorful instrument. I don't have a lot of time behind the wheel of a 5050, but my impression of the 5050 is that it feels big and tuba-like and to me an E2 does not feel big at all. It's heavy, but it also blows relatively small, even in comparison to a 2052. In that sense, an E3 is closer to a 5050. But keep in mind that since Adams are very customizable, you can put the heavy brass and even the heavy valve set that you'd usually see on an E2 on an E3 or you can make an E2 with lighter brass.

  9. #9
    I agree with Doug. To me, the E2 feels a lot like my 5050. For Jake, I believe Aaron’s prestige is a newer German made horn. He does play on a horn belonging to the NY Staff Band, and I’m not sure where that horn was built. I’ll ask next time I talk to him.


  10. #10
    I could not try an E2 on my recent visit to an Adams dealer store because they did not have any ( I tried a E1 0,6 red brass bell and a E3 0,6 yellow brass bell), so I can not say how it sounds. In the comparison of Matonis with the Adams horns I loved the sound of the E2 more. I can say that my Prestige German made has a thickness of the bell of 0,6 mm and, with heavy caps plus heavy craftsmanship on the 4th valve, it get a very heavy horn, 5,5 kg with the mouthpiece, compared to 4,7 kg declared.
    Last edited by franz; 02-22-2019 at 12:25 PM.
    Besson Prestige 2052,3D K&G mouthpiece;JP373 baritone,T4C K&G mouthpiece;Bach 42GO trombone,T4C K&G mouthpiece


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