Buying Guides

6 Saxophone Brands To Avoid & Why

Saxophone Brands To Avoid
Written by Corey Morgan

These are some of the worst saxophone brands to avoid when buying. As a result of their poor build quality and deficient sound performance, these saxophones aren’t worth the money they cost.

The sophisticated and impressive saxophone’s smooth tone has made it a top choice among the horn family. The saxophone is the ideal musical instrument for blues, jazz, soul, and classical music genres. However, a musical instrument’s ability to bring joy to the listener has more to do with how well it performs.

For a variety of reasons, the worst saxophone brands are to be avoided at all costs. It can be difficult to learn to play an instrument if the functionality and clarity of the notes aren’t appealing. As a result, it’s imperative that you spend your money wisely and purchase the best possible option.

It’s best to steer clear of these saxophone brands because they’re prone to breakage and have inconsistent tones. Using this guide will help you find the right instrument to help you perform at your best.

Brands to Avoid When Buying a Saxophone

Beginners and musicians of all skill levels might be frustrated by a subpar or cheap musical instrument. Cheap musical instruments are frequently unplayable or unplayable to a satisfactory degree, and they also tend to break down rapidly. Because of this, it is imperative that you get a high-quality instrument.

The saxophone brands to avoid are:

  1. The Schill brand

One of the worst saxophone brands to avoid is the Schill. If you are a beginner, you are not encouraged to play this sax in order to avoid being disheartened and quitting music. The price of the Schill alone should be enough to scare away potential buyers of a high-quality musical instrument like a saxophone. Schill is a low-quality musical instrument that was manufactured in China.

It has a fragile metal body, imitation leather pads, rough and imperfect tone holes, white metal alloy keys, and more. This is a bad feature because the keys are made of soft metal, which is prone to breakage. In comparison to genuine leather, the substance used to make the sax pads has a spongy feel to it and appears more plastic-like.

While certain notes may sound perfectly in tune, other notes may sound flat or sharp on this saxophone. According to the majority of the reviews, the Schill saxophones do not fulfill the quality requirements that players anticipate. We do not recommend Schill saxophones to anyone who is just starting out on the saxophone and wants to go far.

  1. Monique Saxophone Brand

The tone of the Monique saxophones is not comparable to that of other brands, despite their low price. Even if the instrument’s body and keys/pads are of high quality and it plays well, the dull tune isn’t worth it. It’s not just about the instrument’s body when it comes to producing pleasing sounds for the ears of those who hear them.

According to one of our players, the intonation of a Monique Saxophone brand exposes the price. This can be interpreted as implying that the saxophone’s sound is subpar. The Monique saxophone brand has made our list of saxophones  brands to avoid because of its harsh response and unpredictable intonation.

  1. Brands of Saxophones Made by Helmke

Helmke Saxophone brands like Monique and Schill made our list because of the low quality of the brand. Cheap musical instruments, as previously indicated, are frequently unplayable or unplayable to a satisfactory degree and are prone to rapid degeneration. Because of their low quality reputation, the Helmke Saxophone Brand finds itself in this position.

Some customers bought the instrument because they were curious after reading our reviews, while others bought it because the price was too good to be true. While others may have been fooled by the instrument’s gleaming surface, they failed to consider the pitfalls. There are some musicians who claim that the Helmke Saxophone Brand is garbage.

Because of this, we advise against purchasing a saxophone from this brand.

  1. German Engineering Saxophone Brands

The German Engineering stamp on saxophones should be avoided. The German engineering saxophone brands have a lower reputation. They have broken systems, and their parts are difficult to find, and their intonation is poor.

While some brands have terrible intonation, others don’t play all of the notes. We don’t recommend purchasing this musical instrument due to the poor quality of its construction. Oddly, we discovered that some reputable technicians were unwilling to work on this instrument.

  1. French Engineering Saxophone Brands

Similarities exist between the French and German engineering saxophone brands. People are swayed by the idea that French is part of the same and is also inexpensive. Even if you’re a pro or a beginner, the quality of this instrument’s construction and intonation will let you down.

  1. Antigua Winds

Negative reviews have been posted about the Antigua Tenor Saxophone on the internet due to its poor performance. The sounds produced by the left-hand keys are incorrect, and they become increasingly sharp until the F sharp is nearly a high G note. It is a shoddy construction and is overpriced for what you get. For saxophone players looking for the best sound and longevity, there are a number of options.

  1. Chinese Saxophone Manufacturers

Saxophone brands from China round out our list of the worst saxophones to avoid. We advise you to steer clear of Chinese companies with strange names and low prices that seem too good to be true. To be clear, this does not rule out the existence of reputable Chinese companies with well-known names.

There are, however, far more reputable brands than subpar ones, which is why we encourage buyers to avoid them. They’re no better than a piece of art you’d like to put on your wall and stare at for hours. If you’re looking for a high-quality saxophone, steer clear of those made in China.

Best Saxophone brands+

Among the many reputable and well-known saxophone brands available for purchase are:

  1. Selmer
  2. Yamaha
  3. Yanagisawa
  4. Keilwerth
  5. P Mauriat

The quality of a saxophone depends on how much you practice. There are saxophones for all skill levels, from beginning to advanced. Choosing a reputable brand, on the other hand, will help you advance in your profession.

1. Selmer

For more than 60 years, Selmer has been a leading manufacturer of musical instruments in the United States. Their top grade items, such as saxophones, trumpets, and clarinets, are incredibly popular and incomparable to others.

Their products have even superseded the Mark VI series, which were formerly the most magnificent saxophones, due to their extensive knowledge with these products. Highly recommended is the Selmer Paris Reference 54 Tenor saxophone.

  • Highest level of quality and dependability
  • Brand of choice for some of the world’s greatest musicians.
  • Has a long history of goodwill and a solid reputation.
  • The value has not decreased at all.
  • Despite its high price, the investment is well worth it.

2. Yamaha

Every home has at least one item made by Yamaha, making the company a household name. When compared to other brands, these saxophones are more constant in their operation and intonation. They have horns that are both gorgeous and innovative. The keys and fittings are extremely precise, making them ideal for practice. The student alto saxophone Yamaha YAS280 is highly recommended.

  • High-quality construction
  • Accurate and precise movement and intonation
  • Precise keys and fittings

3. Yanagisawa

This company also specializes in the production of soprano, alto, tenor, and baritone saxophones of the highest quality. Like the preceding model, they’re renowned for their excellent build quality and long-lasting performance. Buying a new mouthpiece is unnecessary because the ebonite mouthpiece provided is of high quality. In terms of intonation and usefulness, they’re the best.

As an intermediate horn, the Yanagisawa 991 models offer many of the same features as professional ones.  With its 17-pound weight and bronze construction, Yanagisawa WO20 saxophones are excellent for professionals. The quality of the instrument plus the fact that it will last a lifetime make the price tag on these instruments well worth it. You should buy a Yanagisawa WO20 Series Alto saxophone.

  • Long-lasting and well-made
  • High-quality bodywork
  • Provides a crystal-clear, vibrant sound.
  • A vast deal of light is reflected from it.
  • It comes with a high-quality ebonite mouthpiece.

4. Keilwerth

Keilwerth saxophone is a one-of-a-kind instrument of exceptional quality. Saxophone manufacturers typically produce horns that look like classic Selmer models, but this firm provides additional options. From the beginning of its creation, this instrument has been renowned for its craftsmanship and quality.

In terms of quality, both the pads and the felts are of the same standard. The pads are dust and humidity resistant, and the felts don’t easily flatten. The SX-90R is a saxophone that is both reliable and in tune.

  • Craftsmanship of the highest caliber
  • The instrument is simple to learn and play.
  • A good set of keys

5. P Mauriat

High-quality musical instruments are known to be produced by this brand. They’re based in Taiwan, but they’re not like the rest. Their intonation is strong, and they’re assembled by hand. The mechanics behind the sound handling is impressive. In comparison to other popular saxophones of comparable quality, the price is also reasonable.