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Saxophone Mouthpiece Selection

Tip Opening - The tip opening of a mouthpiece is the gap from the tip of the mouthpiece to the tip of a reed placed on the mouthpiece. Mouthpiece manufacturers measure this gap on a flat inspection surface (surface place) to get an accurate measurement. Larger tip openings result in louder playing, which is why pros tend to select larger tip openings. They want to be heard. The effect on tone quality is minimal. When purchasing a new mouthpiece, it is important not to make a big jump in tip opening at one time. The mouthpiece becomes harder to play with larger tip openings and requires a well developed embouchere. If you are playing your existing mouthpiece easily, try an increase of 0.010".

Facing Length - Long facings generally make it easier to play the low notes and harder to maintain pitch stability and play the high notes. Short facings are just the opposite.

Chamber Size - Smaller chambers tend to emphasize the higher overtones (brighter sounding) and large chambers tend to emphasize lower overtones (darker sounding).

Baffle - Smaller or no baffle tends to emphasize the lower overtones (darker sounding) and large baffles tend to emphasize high overtones (brighter sounding) .

Mouthpiece Comparison Charts

These charts are provided by mouthpiece manufacturers and should be considered a general guidline to assist in mouthpiece selection. USAreeds is not responsible for the accuracy of the information depicted in the charts.

Vandoren Mouthpiece Chart

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