The mouthpiece – the most important factor of woodwind instruments

No clarinet and no saxophone can be played without a mouthpiece and reed. Especially the mouthpiece is the main part of the instrument as it composes the synthesizer. All the beautiful woodwind instruments are „only“ resonators. The mouthpiece and the reed deliver the prime capstans on which the instrument responses, similar to a well adjusted broadcast station. Résumé: Without a good mouthpiece and without a good reed – nothing works.

Mouthpieces are produced of different materials as hard rubber, cocobolo wood, grenadilla, glass, metal and different plastic materials. In the length of time some of these materials aren’t hygienic harmless. Therefore we found our acrylic composite material which has blameless sound characters and is hygienically harmless and the table doesn’t spoil.

A mouthpiece is just a single piece if you ignore the ligature and the reed. But it shows many important parameters for response, tune and sound. At first the bore of the mouthpiece has to harmonize with the bore of the clarinet barrel or rather the neck of the saxophone. It also has to be centric in an area of 1/100 mm. The table curve has to be more precisely. Millions of table curves are possible but we – often together with our soloists - chose different possibilities and take them in our program. The biggest part have the so called middle tables which satisfy the majority of our musicians. For the German clarinet these are around 0,90 mm, French around 1,15 mm, for alto saxophone 1,70 mm – 2,00 mm, tenor 2,40 mm. Additionally there are long, middle and short tables which sometimes correspond with the maxilla. Saxophone mouthpieces are produced with different chambers. Some have steps which make a richer sound. Important for that is the taste and the field of action of the musician (e.g. Classic, Jazz, Folk Music).

A good mouthpiece not only has to have a good sound and easy response – it also has to be perfectly manufactured. If the table is not parallel the best professional musician will have problems even he has the best mouthpiece with the best reed.

Also it is problematic if you want to have a second similar mouthpiece and the table despite of a similar chamber, the mouthpiece doesn’t correspond with the original mouthpiece. Our diamond equipped CNC-lathes guarantee reproducibility of the parameters.

By the way it doesn’t make sense to test a mouthpiece by playing only a short time and to buy it because it sounds completely different than at home.

Our mouthpieces – as they are perfect – will enjoy you many years and so you can put all your effort in the music!