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Protocol: A Guide to the Collegiate Audition Process for Trombone Book
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This instrument or product has been carefully played/used and returned to us in
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Selmer Paris Reference 54 Tenor SaxophoneThis gorgeously crafted instrument incorporates some of the finest acoustic and ergonomic characteristics of earlier Selmer Paris models. These are combined with modern design and manufacturing enhancements. One major feature making the Reference 54 popular is its centered tone based on the legendary 1954 Mark VI. The keywork is superb and positioned closer to the body for enhanced playability and comfort.
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I purchased my "54" about 2 years ago (2009), and I am so happy with it, I can't believe anyone would play anything else. I play Swing/Jazz/Rock. This horn handles it all with ease and most of all A fantastic Tenor sound that is unmatchable by any other instrument. I traded my Yamaha 62 MKII for the Selmer and I will never play anyting else. If you are looking for sound quality and beautiful craftsmanship, this horn is for you. At first glance the price seems a little high, but after playing my "54" I would pay twice the price and consider it a bargain!
I play both the 54 alto and tenor. I love these new horns for several reasons, but I'll just keep this review to the tenor.
For my hands/body ergonomics, these saxes were laid out very well. I had both horns set-up by Tim Glessman of Sax Alley in Windsor, CO. The key heights, spring tension, pads treated, etc. The 54 has the more focused sound of the modern tenors, not the American vintage sound. If that's what you want, go toward the Reference 36 if you want to stay with Selmer. Another great horn I own! I can truly play these horns faster than my old American vintage saxes. I also love that the scale is so much more even on these horns than any others I've owned. I even had more trouble with the older SA-80-II's I've played.
I definitely recommend this horn as an investment for any intermediate to pro player that will pay dividends in spades years from now.
When my parents bought me this saxophone my freshman year I fell in love with it. Now four years later I find myself loving it even more. It has gotten me two All-State honors placements as well as several other musical honors. Over time I've found the intonation to be slightly off, but that could be explained with my lack of switching the pads adequately. But overall, I've found my saxophone to play better than any other brand I've tried (and I've tried several). This saxophone has a powerhouse sound, wonderful control, and can sustain everyday wear and tear as well as longer performances and gigs. From the moment I was given this saxophone, I've enjoyed every second.
I'd highly recommend this horn. It has a very solid center and is incredibly free blowing. It doesn't have the same "something" that the old VI's have but it definitely comes close. Great horn.
I've been playing jazz on this horn for about 3 years. It has excellent intonation, easy ergonomics (though I raised the low Bb key with some cork), and very even tone quality throughout the range. It maintains the same core sound through all registers. There are a number of great horns out there, but this has a core presence to the sound that is just right for me. Not too spread, not too bright or thin. The natural sound of the horn tends to be somewhat dark. I compensate for this by using a medium chamber mouthpiece. I am very happy with the horn and expect to play it for the rest of my life.