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Pearl Flutes PFP-105 Grenaditte PiccoloThe Pearl-105 piccolo employs composite Grenaditte. As this material is impervious to temperature and humidity, there is no danger of cracking and intonation is much more stable. It has a highwave style headjoint, French pointed arm keys, and pinless construction.
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I have played flute and piccolo for years in numerous bands and shows including the Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestra and Les Miserables in Chicago. As a doubler, this piccolo served me very well in the shows I have played. The embouchure switch between flute and this piccolo is very easy and it doesn't throw me off like with other instruments. As a doubler, I was drawn to this piece for the price and the features (having numerous instruments for shows can be very expensive). In my orchestra, I played this instrument for Beethoven's 5th, Rite of Spring, and Daphnis and Chloe 2nd suite to fill in for some sick players. I received so many compliments on my performances that were done on this instrument. The sound is easy to control and very sweet. My high notes come out very easily (some people seemed to have a problem with this instrument in the high register but I didn't). Overall it's great for a price. True it's not a Powell or Haynes custom piece, but it serves its purpose. My advice is to play on a different headjoint than the one this comes with. From my experience, wave headjoints make the mid-register difficult to control. I use a wood standard Burkart headjoint with mine and it sounds beautiful and smooth. The low notes aren't as loud, but that is a small sacrifice.
Pearl has found a great niche with this instrument. I don't think any other piccolos in this price range deliver this quality. As on all pearl instruments, the intonation is great, and the keywork is light and comfortable. But unlike their flutes, which to me feel a bit light and dainty, the piccolo feels sturdy and has a nice weight. I have used mine for recording so far, with very good results. The full range of the instrument is satisfying; the lows are round and smooth, and the highs not to shrill. I have played more flute than piccolo, and the Pearl made for an easy transition, as piccolos are more tempermental than flutes.
I have been in the market for a new piccolo for the past year. I kept looking at the Pearl, thinking that it wasn't going to be that great since it was a composite. I was wrong... I finally decided to order it, knowing that I could return it if I didn't like it. The first note I played was low D. It came out beautifully, so then I went on up the scale, never before have I had the high Bb, B, and C come out so easily on a piccolo. Last night in our community band, we were practicing "Stars and Stripes", the director told all of us to get out our piccolos. I have been intimidated by this piece for years, but with the notes speaking so clearly, I just breezed right through it. I really recommend this piccolo to anyone. I like the idea of a composite, it doesn't take as much care as a wooden instrument, and it just plays so darn well.
This piccolo looks, feels and plays/sounds like wood, but since it's grenadite it's much sturdier. Conical bore, pointed key arms. You may find the embouchure configuration a little strange, but it plays very well from the low D thru the highest Bb. (I cannot get the high B nor C.) I tried this instrument against a professional friend's set of Haynes and other costly (up to $5K) piccolos; there was not that much difference in tone, intonation and responsiveness. Bottom line: this is a good bet. Also: true to their word, WW/BW did not post the charge to my account until I'd had the picc for 30 days.
I was really impressed with the complete range of this piccolo. The first note I played when it came in the mail was the low D. To my surprise, it came out not only clear but powerful! Every note on this piccolo plays in tune and the high range is really clear. This piccolo has great features on it too. The split e makes me not have to worry about the response of the high E, it is always there! The headjoint is good too with the high wave lip. I play in my college's Wind band and Orchestra so I needed to find a quality piccolo to make it easy to for me to sound good. I would recommend this to anyone!
I recently purchased this piccolo and it was love at first sight! It has the look and feel of wood, but can withstand drastic temperature changes since it is made of a new substance called "grenaditte", especially designed by Pearl. It plays so softly and smoothly in all ranges, but can belt out with volume when needed. With pointed keys (4 of them), a split-E mechanism, and the famous pinless construction, this piccolo is fabulous. The one-piece bore constructionprovdes players with an extremely dependable mechanism. It is a joy to behold and to play. After a 10-minute test drive, I knew it was the piccolo for me. It plays far better than any wooden piccolo I have ever played, and it has the perfect balance of tone in all ranges. The professional case Extra large), cover, and cleaning accessories are a nice bonus. The price is a bargain, but get it now. Prices will, undoubtedly, go up. I have the priviledge of having #112. I bet many more will be made soon...get yours now!
Just got my piccolo today and only thing on my mind is how much can I sell my other piccolos for because I'm going to die with this one! Love the wing head joint! Overall performance is stunning! This piccolo is a doubler's delight! I'm enjoying the piccolo now! No excuse not to own one if you ever have to play piccolo! Lower register is strong and punchy and the upper register sings like a canary! Very respnsive third octave. The notes are all there! I have no problem with the third octave B and C. This baby sings!!!
I've been looking for a piccolo that could survive the football season but still sound beautiful once inside. Although I found better sound quality from more expensive instruments I finally decided that this piccolo was just what I needed. Its low notes are full and its high notes (until around the Bb) are superb! It can deal with any reasonable temperatures and still perform at a high quality. I believe that it's at an extremely reasonable price for its quality and sound.
I have always played granadilla piccolos but changing between a humid and dry climate has wreaked havoc on them. I purchased this piccolo in hopes of getting the same warm, rich tone one gets from granadilla but without the weather damage. I am completely impressed. This piccolo delivers! The tone is very warm and full, and each note is clear, requiring little effort. The highest B and C will sound with a bit of work.
With this piccolo Pearl has lived up to the reputation they built with their concert and alto flutes. It is a gorgeous instrument. The tone is dark and centered, with a "soul" that I usually only hear with grenadilla. The instrument is very responsive. It has that elusive feel of being a living extension of your breath, rather than being a foreign object you have to fight to control.
I agree with earlier reviews in that the middle octave initially seems more challenging to play. With a little practice, though, you will be able to make that octave sing just like the rest of the picc's range. In fact, I have found myself wondering how I ever had trouble with it before. You have to put the effort in to make it effortless, if that makes any sense.
The high B and C will probably not sound for you right away if you aren't an experienced picc player, but that is not unique to this piccolo. There are some good alternate fingerings to try on the Woodwind Fingering Guide website (Google it). These are piccolo-specific fingerings, not just transposed flute fingerings.
In all, I am extremely satisfied with this piccolo, and with the WWBW service (this is my third woodwind purchase from them, and probably won't be the last). It's hard to put this instrument down - you just want to keep playing it! Professionals with deep pockets will probably ultimately still want a handmade grenadilla picc. But I think this might be the best value out there for anyone else. It is also practically indestructible. I carry it between dry air-conditioned rooms and outdoor Texas summer heat and humidity without any worries.
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