Alto

Alto Saxophones For Sale including Selmer Mark VI

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  • Adolphe Sax Alto Saxophone from 1861 Rare ‘Large Bell’ Plays

    $ 3,850

    Adolphe Sax (Father) Alto saxophone, first generation (large bell).

    Here are the details:
    {23307} [ 1861 ] Alto saxophone in E♭.
    Adolphe Sax, Paris
    Inscribed with monogram trademark “AS PARIS” and “Saxophone alto en mi♭ breveté / Adolphe Sax à Paris / Fteur de la Mson Milre de l’Empereur”.

    This alto got restored in Germany, but is still not in top playing condition. It plays, but it would play better with more work. The restoration included new suitable pads, leveling/silver-soldering of toneholes, rebuilding a tonehole, brass repairs and adjusting the mechanics to good playability.

    It is a very lovely instrument and exceptionally rare. A similar one can be found at the MET MUSEUM, see online, If you’re not aware, the Met has one of the most extensive rare musical instrument collections in the world.

    It also comes with a nice mouthpiece that tunes well with the sax. And it includes the ligature (that came with the sax) with the instrument. I have tested many and this one provided for me very good response and stable intonation at A=440. It is a large chamber design similar to the ADOLPHE SAX mouthpieces, but it carries no inscription and has been opened up to a modern .080 tip.

  • Alto Hard Rubber BB Screws Brilhart Reproduction 3-Band Ligature Saxophone Mouthpieces Meyer Selmer Vandoren

    $ 165

    For hard rubber alto saxophone mouthpieces like Meyer Bros, Selmer Soloist, Vandoren Jumbo Java and all Brilharts. This ligature is a true reproduction of the Brilhart 3-Band Ligature: from the alloy of brass to the feel of the screws, it is exactly the same as the vintage Brilhart ligature. Same dimensions, same weight, same feel, same playing response. It’s like going back in time to buy one when they were first made! So for those of you who have always wanted this time-tested style of ligature, but have found them prohibitively expensive, now perhaps getting one is within reach.

  • Alto Hard Rubber Brilhart Reproduction 3-Band Ligature Selmer Meyer Saxophone Mouthpieces

    $ 165

    This ligature fits almost all hard rubber alto saxophone mouthpieces, like Meyer Bros, Selmer Soloist, Vandoren Jumbo Java, all brands of Meyer copies, Ted Klum Acoustimax and New York model, all Brilharts etc. There’s a reason why the vintage Brilhart 3-Band ligatures have been singled out by the market (players) as by far the most desirable vintage ligatures. They are great ligatures. But there will never be enough vintage Brilhart ligatures to meet the high demand for this style of ligature. Thankfully, there is now a high-quality, hand made reproduction available to meet this demand. These are made by a small company in South Korea that cares about getting saxophone equipment right. These ligatures get rave reviews by the people who buy them. I don’t want to make huge claims for a ligature, but I will say that people tend to LOVE them. They’re beautiful, simple, and easy to use, and they sound great.

  • Buescher Aristocrat / Bundy Alto Saxophone 527378 Needs Overhaul

    $ 450
  • Sold Out

    Buescher Aristocrat 140 Alto 339984 Just Tuned Up

    $ 1,250
  • Buescher Aristocrat Series 1 Alto 285455 Old Pads

    $ 850
  • Sold Out

    Buescher Big B Alto Saxophone Original Lacquer Good Condition 324407

    $ 1,650

    This is a 1949 Buescher “Big B” Aristocrat, so named for the ornate engraving of a, well, a Big B on the bell.  This horn is in very good condition, and the typical wear around the fine engraving of the B on the bell is not present, which indicates that this horn has led a life mostly in a closet somewhere.  There are no resolders or past dentwork to speak of, and it plays *way* better than it should on some very old pads, but you would want to get this repadded to play like it can, which is very, very good!  

    These horns are undervalued in my opinion.  I mean, you can get this one in such great shape with all of its original Snap-on resonators and overhaul it for not a whole lot more than a Yamaha student model in total- seems like a good buy to me! They combine excellent intonation, comfortable keywork, top notch build quality, and beautiful lacquer and engraving with a warm, centered tone.  Johnny Hodges famously played one of these, and his tone is a very good example of the blend of sweetness and power these horns possess.

  • Buescher New Aristocrat Alto Rascher Serial Original Silver Plate Old Pads 265024

    $ 1,400
  • Sold Out

    Buescher Super 400 Alto Saxophone Needs Overhaul Great Deal!

  • Buffet Super Dynaction Alto Saxophone Original Lacquer 17435

    $ 2,350

    Buffet Super Dynaction Alto saxophone in original ‘sparkle’ lacquer. This horn is in on consignment, and has good pads, and plays well, with a big, operatic sort of voice. It’s centered like a Selmer from the 50’s, and medium dark, but wider and very open throated. Intonation is good. Keywork is Selmer-like and comfortable. Sometimes these get called a ‘poor man’s Mark VI’ but I’d prefer to think of them as a high-quality, professional mid-century French saxophone in their own right. But I guess, when you figure a new student Yamaha is over $2k, then this becomes a pretty good deal with good pads at this price for a pro vintage alto that is comparable to a Selmer. It has had some small dents removed in the bell area and back of the bow, but that’s just par for the course with a vintage sax, and the work was done well. It’s otherwise in quite good shape. It comes in the the delightful original Lifton case with blue interior. Someone should make a case like this again.

    Only one available!

  • Conn 20M Student Alto Great First Saxophone! Plays well

    $ 600
  • Conn 26M Connqueror Alto Original Lacquer 289956 Beautiful!

    $ 4,250

    SUPER nice, clean, original lacquer, original pads Conn Connqueror 26M alto with all the bells and whistles. Check out Matt Stohrer’s repairman’s overview for some special details on these, and maybe also watch his 6M video for general info on this type of sax. You don’t see many 26M’s for sale ever. And many of those that are sold as original lacquer really aren’t. The original ones look like this – super sharply cut through engraving, dark honey gold lacquer. You can’t beat it! It’s one of the most beautiful saxophones ever made, and also one of the most fun to play.

    Only one available! Who knows when I’ll have another one this nice!

  • Sold Out

    Conn 28M Connstellation Alto Great Deal

    $ 1,500
  • Conn 6M Alto Original Silver Plate 250314 Recent Repad Big Sound

    $ 3,250

    One of the very earliest 6M’s and my favorite vintage as well. Beautiful original silver plate, recent overhaul, some resoldered posts etc. Email for a full description!

  • Conn 6M Alto Saxophone Gorgeous Original Lacquer 320627

    $ 1,750
  • Sold Out

    Conn 6M VIII Alto Original Lacquer Original Pads Fresh Full Overhaul! 275649

    $ 3,450
  • Conn 6M VIII Alto Saxophone Recent Overhaul Original Lacquer 304940

    $ 3,450
  • Conn 6M VIII Alto Saxophone Silver Freshly Overhauled! 312086

    $ 3,950

    Yes, that’s the original silver plating on this amazingly well-preserved Conn 6M VIII alto from 1945. It’s just been totally overhauled and can blow the walls down. Tunes great too. No past repairs or issues at all. This is like a freshly restored barn find Ford Mustang convertible.

  • Conn Connstellation Alto Saxophone 28M Original Lacquer Excellent! 338203

    $ 2,350
  • Conn Connstellation Alto Saxophone 28M Very Good Condition Original Lacquer 335771

    $ 2,250

    You could be forgiven for thinking that because there are two original lacquer, very good condition Conn 28M “Connstellation” saxophones on my website at the moment that these are somewhat common, but I assure you that is not the case!   I will copy and paste the general statements about the 28M from the other description, with the unique description of this particular instrument’s physical and playing condition at the bottom.

    The Conn 28M will always have a special place in my heart.  It represents the last time one of the great American saxophone manufacturing companies tried something wholly new, and although the horn never really found a market and not many were made, they are fantastic instruments that besides being unique and historically interesting, play *really* well.  

    These saxophones were redesigned, utilizing many ideas from Allen Loomis (Conn’s resident saxophone visionary) and Hugh Loney, with input from Santy Runyon, with the aim of creating a saxophone that had extremely slick keywork and a very balanced scale.  The keywork, although familiar under the fingers with regard to placement and layout, is mechanically quite different from any other saxophone and has been built from the ground up with the goal of reducing mechanical friction. There are no pivot screws anywhere on this saxophone, instead the long rods have a very long hinge rod with the middle machined down so only the ends touch.   The G# has a very unique torsion mechanism to provide a G# feel that is smooth throughout the range. The side keys are designed so that the angle and distance of travel is the same for each key. There are adjustment screws on the upper and lower stacks as well as the left hand pinky table. The bell keys are on the left side, and the pantsguard/bell keyguard is a large acrylic plate that was designed with the idea in mind of allowing the horn to vent properly regardless of playing position or clothing choice.  The octave mechanism has three pips (octave vents), one on the neck and two on the body, which has the end result of a very clear middle D and no hiss on the A or G#, as well as excellent intonation. The keywork in general is very light, and the pearls are larger than usual for Conn and a little flatter. The overall feeling is of a very light horn, extremely slick, easy to play, excellent intonation, and very even throughout.

    The one downfall of this design is the pantsguard, which is fairly brittle and often broken.  Although nowadays there are excellent replacements available, this one has its original guard in decent condition.  There is one repaired crack (visible in the photos) and the common small cracks radiating from some of the screw holes.  I would anticipate, absent any further damage, that this keyguard will last and should not present any problems- although I will furnish you with contact information for obtaining a well made (and somewhat more durable) replacement should you ever need it.  And believe it or not, I have experience shipping these so you can rest easy knowing I will remove it for shipping, wrap it separately, and it will arrive to you in good condition.

    This instrument plays quite decently on what appears to be an older repad with plastic domed resonators, with a strong, moderately bright, cheerful voice.  The clarity of the tone is notable, and it is a lot of fun to play with a unique look and feel and timbre that would lend itself easily to classical, big band, or small group jazz.  The lacquer is original and in good condition with some playing wear and a few stand scratches near the low C#, with no evidence of past repairs or dents or resolders of any kind. It is also a unique and interesting piece of saxophone history, in very good condition, and whoever owns this instrument next will have a lot of fun being its steward for the next generation.  

  • Conn New Wonder II Alto Saxophone Silver Plate 227313

    $ 950
  • Conn New Wonder II Transitional Alto Saxophone Original Silver Old Pads 237954

    $ 950

    This late Conn New Wonder II alto sax is in very good original condition, and just needs a quality overhaul to be an excellent player. It’s original silver plate, and it will shine up and look amazing with a cleaning and polishing job put into it. These late New Wonder II’s start to be called transitional when they get their first 6M-anticipating feature: the raised side E key touch. Besides that, this is pretty much a New Wonder II, though Conn also starts to experiment with the neck around this serial, to improve intonation and give slightly more focus to the sound (still very wide and spread). When overhauled nicely, these altos are unmatched for the amount that they feel alive in your hands. They vibrate and respond so amazingly well. I never want to put the horn down!

    Only one available!

  • Conn Transitional Alto Silver Art Deco Excellent Condition Orig Pads 247007

    $ 1,950
  • Sold Out

    Couf Superba 1 Alto Saxophone Freshly Overhauled 76761

    $ 2,850

    On trial Oct 20 2021

  • Sold Out

    Couf Superba 1 Alto Saxophone Recent High End Overhaul! 81471

    $ 2,850

    On trial Sept 8 2021

  • Holton Alto Saxophone Original Gold Plate Beautiful Great Deal 16374

    $ 750
  • Ishimori Wood Stone New Vintage Alto Saxophone Brand New High F# Antique Finish

    $ 4,500

    Only one available!

    This is the highly sought-after Ishimori Wood Stone ‘New Vintage’ alto saxophone available. The model is WSA-AF with high F#. Finish is bare brass with a stable patina applied, and beautiful hand engraving, the among the most elaborate of any modern saxophone. Really beautiful!

    This is an effortless player. Hard to emphasize how effortless. Completely effortless low register, low Bb pops out like any other note. Altissimo is easy. Tuning is great. The tone is sort of Selmer-ish but punchier like a King Super 20. But it’s not either of those. It’s its own thing – the New Vintage alto.  Easy to play delicately and softly with plenty of saturation and projection. Action is low, fast, and snappy. Great for jazz, concert, ballads– really anything. I’m impressed! Here’s our first demo video:

  • Ishimori Wood Stone New Vintage Alto Saxophone Brand New WSA-VL with F# Dark Lacquer

    $ 4,500

    If you want one, we can order you one.

    This is the highly sought-after Ishimori Wood Stone ‘New Vintage’ alto saxophone available. The model is WSA-VL with high F#. It has dark, cognac colored lacquer and beautiful hand engraving, the among the most elaborate of any modern saxophone. Effortless player. Hard to emphasize how effortless. Completely effortless low register, low Bb pops out like any other note. Altissimo is easy. Tuning is great. The tone is sort of Selmer-ish but punchier like a King Super 20. But it’s not either of those. It’s its own thing – the New Vintage alto.  Easy to play delicately and softly with plenty of saturation and projection. Action is low, fast, and snappy. Great for jazz, concert, ballads– really anything. I’m impressed! Here’s our first demo video:

  • Keilwerth ST-90 Alto Saxophone 854729

    $ 600
  • Sold Out

    Keilwerth Straight Alto Saxophone Original Black Nickel Plate Super Rare 118812

    $ 4,950
  • Keilwerth SX90R SHADOW Alto Saxophone Excellent Condition 124564

    $ 4,950

    This is a real Keilwerth Shadow alto. If you’re not hip to Keilwerths, you might accidentally buy a black nickel Keilwerth thinking it’s a shadow, when it isn’t. The Shadow is solid nickel silver (not brass) and then has black nickel over that. So the engraving cuts through to the nickel silver and looks silver. It’s unlike any other saxophone. These are the top of the line that Keilwerth makes, and this one is gorgeous. One owner, adult-owned, and well cared-for. It has no problems or issues at all. I also just got it totally tuned up and setup and it’s playing great! Shadow altos are rare and amazing, with extra engraving, that unbeatable look, and a depth of tone from the nickel silver base metal that is a bit darker and more powerful and complex than brass. It’s great!

  • King Alto Saxophone Original Gold Plate Old Pads Beautiful Engraving 105999

    $ 1,200
  • Sold Out

    King Super 20 Alto Full Pearls Original Lacquer Gorgeous

    $ 5,750
  • Martin Centennial Alto Saxophone Committee II and III Transitional Model Rare! 142319

    $ 1,550

    Insanely low price (not my decision) on this gorgeous Martin Centennial Alto saxophone. (This is on consignment and the owner wants me to move it quickly!) The lacquer has aged to a dark honey color and looks great. Having no other Centennial altos around to compare to, I’m not willing to commit to this being original lacquer, but it might be. I don’t see signs of buffing, and if it were a Comm II, then it would look correct to be original. So maybe it is? The Centennial celebrates 100 years since the invention of the saxophone. It appears briefly between the Committee II and the Committee III (The Martin Alto) models, and it has features of both models. You can easily spot some guards and key shapes that remind you of the Comm II, while the main design chiefly anticipates the Commitee III in design and tone. If you want a The Martin Alto, but you want one that is cooler, super-early, darker than average, and rarer and more collectible, this is it!

    The tone is warm, powerful, round, and full. The ‘carrying power’ (as Martin calls it in old ads) is a main plus of this model. It sings out with absolutely no resistance to blasting over a section or a band. You can do the west coast dry jazz tone like Art Pepper, or you can blast like the SNL sax players if you want to. The intonation is remarkably good. The ergonomics are also surprisingly good.  It’s hard to beat this horn for the money. It even plays well on the existing mix of pads, and doesn’t need an overhaul right out of the case like most of these.

    Only one available!

  • Martin Committee II Alto Saxophone Original Lacquer Plays Well Great Deal! 131k

    $ 1,550

    Insanely low price (not my decision) on this gorgeous Martin Committee II Alto saxophone. (This is on consignment and the owner wants me to move it quickly!) The original lacquer has aged to a dark molassas color and just looks so great. You get the deco vertical MARTIN logo and the lion and crown engraving, and the gorgeous nickel keywork and two tone guards on the bell keys. These horns are SUPER under-rated, and have great upside appreciation potential as more people around the world discover what fine saxophones Martin made in its heyday. The Committee II was only made for a few years before some patent disputes forced Martin to switch to a different design, but the few thousand of these that were made are a real sweet spot for vintage saxophone tone. Note: the neck is from a few months later than the body 133k versus 131k, but it’s the correct neck etc. You see that sometimes on these, and I’m not sure why! Maybe just people swapping necks around.

    The tone is warm, powerful, round, and full. It has more of a delicate lyrical center to it than the more ‘in your face’ Committee III. You could play anything from classical sax through concert band, and all the way into jazz and rock on this, depending on your mouthpiece and your styistic choices. The intonation is remarkably good. The ergonomics are also surprisingly good. I love the octave thumb rest and stack key feel on the Committee II. The left hand pinky keys are vintage style, of course, so you’d have to get used to those. But for the price, and for the tone you get, it’s well worth it!

    Only one available!

  • Sold Out

    Martin The Martin Alto Committee III Original Lacquer Beautiful 198824

    $ 1,500
  • Noblet Alto Good Original Condition Great Deal 8662 Original

    $ 599
  • Sold Out

    Selmer Mark VI Alto Original Lacquer Very Good Condition 190714

  • Selmer Mark VI Alto Saxophone Near Mint Original Lacquer 172759

    $ 7,250
  • Selmer Mark VI Alto Saxophone Near Mint Original Pads 127335

    $ 11,000
  • Selmer Mark VI Alto Saxophone Sanborn Serial Original Lacquer FRESH Overhaul! 143714

    $ 8,250
    JUST FINISHED with the overhaul October 2021. New photos coming soon. This thing is a screamer!
    This is a 143k Selmer Mark VI alto from 1967. It is American-engraved, with worn original lacquer. In the 139-144k serial range, you get a kind of sweet spot for Mark VI alto tone. These are probably the loudest, most crisp and projecting VI altos, but they still have the warmth and complexity that I love in the earlier VI altos. If you want a dark VI, this is not it. But it doesn’t at all have to peel paint or be played with a high baffle piece. Use a Meyer, and you’ll sound wonderful. It’s a natural lead alto instrument – projects over a band while staying rich and pleasant tonally. Besides the ‘Sanborn serial’ price bump, which IMO used to be more of a thing than it currently is, it’s easy to understand why these became some of the most desirable altos of any kind ever made.
    This particular example has been played a lot! The finish wear reminds me of Kenny Garrett’s alto, which looks similar (just happened to notice that), and is a sign of a horn that has been played and loved. It’s original lacquer, quite worn, and it has had a few of the typical past repairs also – slight bow dent removed, low Eb keyguard resoldered on one side, and slight push in removed from the lower C/Eb post. Bell flare crease removed, and a small dent removed from the upper body tube. All done well, so it looks good enough that you might not notice those things if I didn’t point them out. Original neck is in great shape, not pulled down or damaged. The pads are old, so plan on a thorough overhaul, and this alto will definitely not disappoint. If you’re looking for something mint, look elsewhere! I have a mint/near mint 76k, 127k, 172k and some others at the moment. But this is also a fraction of the cost of what it would be if it were mint also, so there’s that. It’s not that common to find this exact version of VI alto that is the most desirable, that is also not priced a lot higher.
    Only one available!
  • Selmer Prelude Student Alto Very Good Condition

    $ 600
  • Selmer Radio Improved Alto 19276 Recent Overhaul Very Good Condition

    $ 4,950

    If you read around on here a bit, you’ll see that I love Selmers from the 1930’s and the Radio Improved in particular. This one is in great playing condition with a recent overhaul, and feels nice and snappy under the fingers. The tone is like a Selmer blended with a Conn almost- delicate lyrical core that reminds me of a later Selmer, but with a wider, warmer, more spread feel like a Conn. The keywork is pretty comfortable too, though the left hand spatula keys aren’t modern, and take getting used to if you haven’t played a vintage horn before. The lacquer is in beautiful shape and looks great – deep honey gold. These horns are very uncommon, and this one is nicer than the great majority of RI’s out there. Only 1140 RI altos were made, and this is probably in the top 10% of those.

    Only one available!

  • Selmer Reference 54 Alto Excellent Condition Getting Overhauled 679367

    $ 5,950
  • Selmer SA80 Series II Alto Black Lacquer Overhauled Better than New 533234

    $ 4,750
  • Selmer SBA Alto Original Lacquer Recent High End Overhaul Gorgeous 51347

    $ 8,500

    Amazing original lacquer Selmer SBA alto with a recent high-end overhaul. It plays great!

  • Sold Out

    Selmer Series II Alto Super Action 80 Excellent Condition 570324

    $ 3,450

    On trial Oct 20 2021

  • Selmer Series III Alto Great Playing Condition Great Deal 618021

    $ 3,000
  • Selmer Super Action 80 Series II Alto Excellent Condition 446339

    $ 3,650
  • Selmer Super Action 80 Series II Alto Fresh Overhaul! 402197

    $ 3,650
  • Sold Out

    Selmer Super Action 80 Series II Alto Full High End Overhaul!! Excellent

    $ 3,950
  • Selmer Super Action 80 Series II Alto Plays Great Just serviced 402197

    $ 3,450
  • Selmer Super Action 80 Series II Alto Saxophone 517537 SA80-II Excellent Condition Great Price!

    $ 3,150

    Save thousands of dollars getting this beautiful condition used Selmer Series II alto. This instrument has very little wear, and comes to you in excellent condition. It just got several new pads and a thorough setup, so it is playing very well and effortlessly throughout. As I’m sure you know, the Series II is the standard, go-to alto saxophone for serious saxophone study. You never need to upgrade it, and you can take it to college for saxophone study and it will be in good company there with a lot of other Series II’s and III’s. The tone is balanced, warm, clear and round, with a lyrical core tone and very good intonation. The Series II likes to have a classical style or concert mouthpiece like a Selmer S80 C* or D, or a Selmer Concept etc. Lots of other mouthpieces work, but if you’re not sure what to get, then get one of those two.

    Saxophones don’t really wear out if you maintain them, so there’s really no reason not to save a few thousand dollars on a nice used example of one of the most popular professional alto saxophones. You can keep this for the rest of your life and play it. It will hold its value as long as you own it. These are only going to go up in price over time.

  • Selmer Super Sax Alto Saxophone Original Silver Plate American Engraved Amazing 17875

    $ 4,950
  • Selmer Super Sax Cigar Cutter Alto Original Lacquer Fresh Overhaul Exceptional! 16757

    $ 5,250

    Just overhauled. Photos are before the overhaul. It looks a bit nicer now, and plays ridiculously well. It’s like the warmth and lyrical core of a Selmer Balanced Action, but with the wideness and power of a Conn 6M added in. Keywork is the older style, of course, so you can’t be too fussy about that.

  • Selmer Super Sax Cigar Cutter Alto Saxophone Original Gold Plate Old Pads 17618

    $ 5,500
  • SML Gold Medal II Alto Saxophone Excellent Condition Old Pads 23350

    $ 1,675
  • Sold Out

    SML Rev. D Alto Saxophone Original Lacquer 11xxx Excellent Condition! Old Pads

    $ 2,150
  • Yamaha YAS-23 Alto Saxophone Best Student Sax 265493A

    $ 800
  • Yamaha YAS-23 Alto Saxophone Best Student Sax 265727A

    $ 800
  • Yamaha YAS-26 Alto Saxophone Brand NEW with Warranty and Setup

    $ 2,166
  • Sold Out

    Yamaha YAS-475 Alto Saxophone Great Student Option – Just Serviced!

    $ 1,299

    New photos coming in a few days. This 475 alto now looks almost brand new! It got a thorough tune up, complete disassemble and clean up, several new pads, and is now playing really well. It feels almost brand new under the fingers, and the setup is better than new. Great option for a solid alto saxophone for someone!!

  • Yamaha YAS-480 Intermediate Alto Saxophone Brand NEW with Warranty

    $ 2,640
  • Yamaha YAS-52 Intermediate Alto Saxophone Excellent Condition 13471

    $ 1,350
  • Sold Out

    Yamaha YAS-62 Professional Alto Saxophone Fresh Overhaul!

    $ 2,350

    Completely overhauled YAS-62 in top playing condition! I had to raise the price because I spent $900 on a great overhaul on this. It now has all new everything!

  • Yamaha YAS-82ZII Custom Z Alto Brand NEW with Warranty and Pro Setup

    $ 4,205
  • Sold Out

    Yamaha YAS-82ZULPW Rare Unlacquered “Hand Selected by Phil Woods” with Signed Paperwork

  • Yamaha YAS-875EXII Custom EX-II Alto Brand NEW with Warranty and Pro Setup Exceptional!

    $ 4,205

    Best way to buy a new Yamaha if you are serious about having it in top playing condition. Give me two weeks to get the pro setup completed.

  • Yamaha YDS-150 Digital Saxophone

    Yamaha YDS-150 Digital Saxophone – In Stock NOW!

    $ 799

    2 left IN STOCK as of October 8 2021. Buy your Yamaha YDS-150 Digital Saxophone before they run out. Yamaha is experiencing production delays and won’t have these available anytime soon after these two are gone.

    The Yamaha YDS-150 Digital Saxophone is a new kind of digital saxophone. It is more like a real saxophone than any digital saxophone that has come before, because it has regular saxophone keywork. So unlike an EWI 4000S, 5000, or a WX5, you don’t have to switch to a different keywork feel in order to play the digital saxophone anymore.

    This is going to be huge for people who want to practice saxophone quietly rather than people who just want a midi or digital interface sax. You can practice with headphones on and not bother your neighbors at all hours. Or play it quietly on one of the 15 volume settings. The Yamaha YDS-150 Digital Saxophone also works fine as a digital input into whatever sound processing software that you want to use. But it feels more like a regular saxophone under the fingers. I’ve been having fun with digital saxophones ever since the Casio DH-100, and I think like the Casio, this Yamaha YDS-150 Digital Saxophone will probably become an instant classic of its genre for the same reason – it feels more like an actual saxophone to play than any similar option.

    In brief (more below) are the main features of the Yamaha YDS-150 Digital Saxophone that you might care about:

    1. The Yamaha Yamaha YDS-150 Digital Saxophone has a speaker in the brass bell, so that the sound you generate vibrates the instrument’s body tube. As you play louder, you feel more resonance.
    2. The Yamaha YDS-150 Digital Saxophone has a regular saxophone mouthpiece (basically a repurposed Yamaha 4C soprano piece) and even a ‘reed’ so that it feels like a saxophone in your mouth also. The reed doesn’t vibrate though! You can even swap out the Yamaha mouthpiece for your own mouthpiece, as long as it has a similar bore to a 4C, though this won’t do much to the tone if anything. It might make it feel a little more like ‘home’ to you.
    3. The Yamaha YDS-150 Digital Saxophone has an advanced breath sensor that responds instantly to small changes in breath support by changing the tone that you generate. Again, you see the theme – feels a bit more like a saxophone to play.
    4. The sound it generates is actual sound samples taken from real Yamaha saxophones. You can switch among Yamaha soprano, alto, tenor, and baritone tones on your Yamaha YDS-150 Digital Saxophone. It’s a pretty good idea, thought it still sounds like a midi sax to me. The bari sax model is actually pretty good though.
    5. There’s an app that lets you further modify and control the tone you get from the Yamaha YDS-150 Digital Saxophone. The app is actually quite good! And you can also input the sound from your Yamaha YDS-150 Digital Saxophone into Ableton or Garageband or ProTools or whatever you like and modify it there, or even run the output into analog or digital pedals, like in our saxophone looping video here.
    6. Interestingly it’s keyed from high F# down to low A so you can use it as a baritone model! And the tuning is adjustable within 5 hz so you can play with a flat piano or in different temperatures with acoustic instruments whose tuning changes with changing weather etc. Not a bad idea!

    Shortcomings of the YDS-150 are as follows:

    1. It’s a bit awkward changing notes with the digital switches on the keys versus the analog feel of a real sax.
    2. Similarly, starting and stopping notes with breath is different from how you articulate them on a real sax. So playing four quarter notes staccato requires you to learn habits that don’t transfer to sax.
    3. Reed doesn’t vibrate, so it doesn’t really feel like a saxophone to play.
    4. Saxophone sound samples don’t sound all that much like a saxophone. See our A/B comparison video for comparison of a Yamaha custom alto vs the YDS-150 alto sound model.
    5. No vibrato or control of tone with embouchure – breath only.

    I’ll put more Yamaha YDS-150 Digital Saxophone details and some review videos and sound clips in the long description below, so scroll down for the additional info! And for only $799, it’s not bad even just as a tool to get some late night practice time in.

  • Yanagisawa A-880 Alto Excellent Condition Aubra Graves’ Horn 117796

    $ 2,950
  • Yanagisawa A-990 Alto Excellent Condition! Plays Great 176857

    $ 2,950

    Absolutely gorgeous example of one of my favorite modern alto saxophones – the Yanagisawa A990 professional alto. By the way – for you parents out there wonderingm Yah-nuh-gih-sah-wah is how you pronounce it. The 990 is the top of the line model, equivalent to the subsequent A991 and WO-10 models which you will also see around for sale, and also to the A880 which came immediately before. Yanagisawa also makes a slightly less expensive, but also professional line which lacks a few bells and whistles present on this line of instruments, called the A900, A901, and WO-1. It’s not too confusing once you get used to it, but I find that it is confusing to many folks initially when they start shopping for these, both to be confronted with the array of model numbers, and the two parallel lines of professional horns, and the difficult-to-pronounce-confidently-name.

    Ok throat clearing how behind us, we turn to this extremely nice example of a Yanagisawa A990 alto. This horn is one-owner, and was very well cared-for. It shows very little use, no wear, and no previous or current damage or past repairs. It’s about as nice as you could ask for. The reason I like these horns a lot, is that the 880 and 990 tenor to have a bit warmer, more complex tone than the 991 and WO-10 do. That extra warmth can give you just a bit of extra depth to the sound, though your choice of mouthpiece and reed will make a larger contribution. Besides that, you won’t find a modern saxophone that is better built than the 880/990/991 Yanagisawa saxophones. That’s because Yanagisawa makes only saxophones, and has been doing so for a very long time. The company is small and highly specialized, and its workers are all master builders, capable of building one of these single-handed, and taking turns on the different steps to keep the work interesting.

    So if you’re shopping used saxophones and feeling nervous about upkeep, Yanagisawa is your safest bet, though you’ll also find good build quality on Yamaha pro saxes, and to a lesser extent on Selmer and Keilwerth, both of which tend to need more of a thorough overhaul when they burn through their intial factory setups.

    This particular A990 has excellent pads, and plays great on them. It is just freshly tuned up, and responds easily throughout the entire playing range without any trouble. The tone is medium bright, and rich, and will darken down with a classical mouthpiece, or project extra with a higher baffle jazz mouthpiece. You can do what you want with it, because the intonation is good and the horn is not mouthpiece-picky at all. The keywork is comfortable and snappy, and the feel is nice under the fingers. The underslung octave key on these adds some interest to the look of the horn, and also works great as a mechanism.

    If you want a horn that just works, dependably, tunes well, sounds great, and gets out of the way so that you can focus on the music, that’s what a Yanagisawa does for you. It’s easy to maintain, with just regular checkups and the occasional cleaning and adjustment. If you happen to be interested, I also have the A880 and the A991 in stock at the moment, and can even get you a great price on a new WO-1 or WO-10 if you email me directly.

    Only one available!

  • Sold Out

    Yanagisawa A-991 Alto Excellent Condition Plays Great 227791

    $ 3,150

    On trial Oct 20 2021

  • Yanagisawa A901 Alto Excellent Condition Great Deal 318710

    $ 2,100