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A brand new Selmer or Yamaha Custom mouthpiece will set you back around 0 (Canadian) for an Alto model, or about 0 for a Tenor mouthpiece.The standard student mouthpieces which companies ship with student model instruments cost about -40.I have not been paid to endorse any of the following products, nor am I related in any way to any of the companies mentioned. (I'll post a lesson on thumb technique at a later date.) Yamaha tells me that the next version of this saxophone will have a much better designed thumb key. If you aren't a particularly technical player, but want a rich, robust warm tone, then this is the horn for you. These two models are the creme de la creme of the professional saxophone world. While the only series III horn I've tried has been the Soprano, I was very impressed.Again, I have some qualms about the octave keys, but this is slightly better than the model 23. Finally, Selmer is making a soprano which comes close to the ease of play which I find on my old Yamaha 62. I don't know if the price difference at the retail level justifies the III over the II, but the quality of Selmer horns are quite high.That's not a huge increase in price for the increase in quality that you will get by upgrading.(These are "classical" mouthpieces - but I recommend them even for wannabe jazz players to begin with. Build up your chops on these, then move onto a good quality jazz mouthpiece, like a Meyer #5.) The best part about spending that kind of money on the mouthpiece is that it will work just fine for the rest of your life, provided that you take care of it properly.
YAMAHA 62 (USED ONLY - NO LONGER IN PRODUCTION) The Yamaha 62 was Yamaha's first major try at breaking into the professional market.Possession of stolen property is a serious offence in most places. If you buy an intermediate model instrument, you will likely be able to sell it for 85-110% of its original value after a couple of years.All you have to do if you live in Canada, is call your local police station--before you buy the instrument--and get them to check the serial number and they will call back within a few minutes after checking a national database of stolen items. Now, you want to go and buy a saxophone, you walk into the shop, and there are 15 different options to choose from. If you buy a pro horn, it will actually over its pre-tax purchasing cost.Try a few different saxophones though, since there is some variation between individual instruments made by Selmer - they are slightly less consistent from the Yamaha. These two Yamaha models have really made a dent into the professional market.Be careful - Selmer also sells a "Selmer USA" model sax, which in my opinion is vastly inferior to the SA80 II series. (I play a Custom (875) Tenor.) As far as I know, the 675 line is now only made in the Soprano model. Yamaha's quality control on these horns is simply amazing - you can pick up a pair of Custom models anywhere in the world, and they will respond virtually identically.
The silver horns in particular have a terrific, rich & warm sound.