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The Atkinson A800 is made with a specially annealed hand hammered bell for quick response and plated with a special hard nickel plate to enhance the sound to a brighter timbre and greater projection. The A-800 also includes a shepherd's crook on the 1st Bb for a more rounder sound on the high Bb.
Reviewed by 3 customers
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I have returned my 2nd Atkinson horn due to a defect in the quality and/or workmanship. I am not please with the horn. As I have rehearsed on each of these horns, a string popped/broke on the first valve! I had to cancel my 2nd solo on a Saturday night that I was scheduled to play at my church the next morning due a broken string while I was rehearsing. It just happened again on the 2nd horn during rehearsal. The horns were 2 months & 1 week old when this happened. Also, I struggled with getting each note perfectly when played. I sometimes would hear an airy sound & I question the spit valve fully closing when quickly emptying during play. I expect a horn to go to the notes I play, but I found out that Atkinson horns just can't be depended on for solos by a mature semi-pro musician. Also, the quality of the material in the strings can't be depended on to hold up.
I purchased this horn about a month ago and, for the most part, I was very pleased. The things I'm not pleased with are as follows: it seems to play most notes about a half step above key (in other words it's a little sharp), the mouthpiece is not comfortable (I'm going to have to buy another), and the horn itself is very hard to clean (all I've gotten on it are fingerprints but they're really hard to remove). The things I was most pleased with are: the price, the hard case that zips up and has and a gig bag feel, and gorgeous upper octaves that I can reach with ease (and I've only been playing for 2 years).
I owned a Conn 8D many years ago, and when I came back into the market for a horn, my budget was not the same as before... this horn caught my eye because of the bore and bell size alone, but I have to say I'm very pleased with this instrument. It's light, free-blowing, and well made. The inherent intonation is decent, and for the price, I don't think you can buy a better horn. Valves have excellent action, great tone quality throughout.
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