Our Price: $149.99
Sale: $99.99 (33% off)
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Trumpet and Flugelhorn Case
Remaining Quantity: 25
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Vandoren Optimum Alto Saxophone MouthpieceThe Vandoren Optimum series of saxophone mouthpieces is designed to be more free blowing and responsive. This alto sax mouthpiece gives you accurate articulation and total control at all dynamic ranges with precise intonation.These mouthpieces are available in two different facings, the AL3 and the AL4. The AL3 most closely resembles a C* facing and is perfect for students from beginner to intermediate and into advanced. The AL4 is based on the popular A27 from the V5 series. The design is a bit more open and better for professionals or serious, upper-level students. It is similar to C**.Vandoren mouthpieces are known for their high, uniform quality—among the best of the mass produced. The Vandoren line is extensive. It covers all woodwinds and offers designs suited to a variety of playing and musical styles.
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This is a GREAT mouthpiece - I've played a couple others but none of them give as good of a sound. I get a lot of compliments on my tone now and I think it has a lot to do with the Optimum. It's really clear, dark, smooth, rich, direct - it's great for classical but definitely not for jazz because it's so clean sounding. I got the AL3 and I've had it for about 2 1/2 years and it still sounds great, but the smaller facing is starting to feel like there's not enough flexibility, so I would definitely say for really experienced players or anyone playing on harder reeds (4 or above) that the AL4 would be the way to go.
I've been using a Selma Larry Teal mouthpiece playing a Yamaha 82Z alto sax. A good combo that works well for me when playing classical. When playing soft jazz, I use a Meyer M5 mouthpiece. A short time ago, a friend asked me to try the Vandoren AL4 mouthpiece and provide an opinion. I tried it with a #3 medium Rigotti Gold reed and WOW what a clearly noticeable difference in sound. Naturally, I liked it so much I had to buy one. I tried various ligatures and the one I thought worked best is the Rovner MKIII.C-1RL, lightly tightened (as in snug). When I first used the AL4 mouthpiece the fellows I played with liked the sound and said they heard a clean much darker focused sound, also thinking I may have been using a different sax. I still use the Larry Teal and the Meyer mouthpieces but the AL4 plays a much darker focused sound that seems to fill the room. The AL4 mouthpiece is easily free-blowing and quick to respond. It's a keeper.
I would Compare the Selma Larry Teal, Meyer M5, and the Vandoren AL4 mouthpieces as follows. The Selma Larry Teal is free-blowing and quickly responsive and plays a clean focused sound that's just a tad on the bright side. It's definitely a good versatile mouthpiece. The Meyer M5 is free-blowing and responsive and plays a clean, focused slightly darker sound than the Larry Teal mouthpiece. The Meyer M5 is a good jazz mouthpiece. The Vandoren AL4 is free-blowing and responsive and gives a clean darker focused sound than the Meyer M5. I like it and occasionally use it rather than the Meyer M5. If you like the sound, the Vandoren AL4 could be the one all purpose mouthpiece.
After recently graduating high school and entering college as a music major on sax, I was looking to buy my own professional mouthpiece. Throughout high school I played on a school-owned Rashcer mouthpiece. I've also tried a Selmer S80 C*. Neither of these mouthpieces gave the same results that I've gotten with my AL-3. This mouthpiece has a great classical tone and plays great in all registers on my Unison S300II alto. I use a mouthpiece saver which gives it extra comfort. I use regular vandoren 3.5 strength reeds with a Ravner leather ligature. If you're a serious student looking for an upgrade professional mouthpiece, this is an excellent choice.
I received the AL4 my sophomore year right before school ended. It produced the best tone I have ever had!! I played it with the Vandoren select reeds, strength 3 and the optimum and leather ligatures and it was a dream come true. For almost two years I had been searching for my unique sound and I achieved it with this mouthpiece. The tone was rich and extremely colorful. I couldn't believe I had never tried it before! Shortly I was getting way more compliments on my tone than I thought I deserved! My solos in honor bands drew a lot of attention to me from the other band members, the audience and even band directors from other schools! I play on a Yanagisawa 901 alto with the 992 neck and it sings like an angel. Then last Christmas my mom got me the AL3 and I experimented with that a little. I use that one more now because my private teacher and band director say that my tone is even clearer and more focused. I use 3 1/2 reeds with it because the 3s sounded too bright for me on that mouthpiece. Overall, the optimum series is a very wonderfully made mouthpiece that is sure to give you the saxophone sound of your dreams!
I had been struggling with a different mouthpiece by a famous manufacturer for several years. The old piece just wasn't working for me...I could not get the dark sound I wanted. The "S" piece was also very resistant and slow to respond - I never got comfortable with it. This piece is completely different! Responsive, good intonation and very flexible in tone quality. I could not imagine being happier. This is my second Vandoren mouthpiece and I am very impressed. I can get the sound I want without having to think about it.
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