Hirsbrunner euphonium


  • ca.1984 Hirsbrunner F-Tuba Model 288
  • What is the best euphonium brand?
  • Rip Through Any Passage: How to Choose the Best Euphonium for You
  • Hirsbrunner Euphonium
  • ca.1984 Hirsbrunner F-Tuba Model 288

    Now dear reader, we turn our attention away from Markneukirchen and look towards Sumiswald, Switzerland. Although the company Hirsbrunner no longer exists, many of their beautiful instruments are still going strong, including this F-Tuba made in , which is considered by many Hirsbrunner fans to be the golden era of their multi-generational workshop.

    Hirsbrunners have always been expensive instruments and with good reason. If you are so inclined to disassemble yours, you would find the quality of the work speaks for itself.

    Build quality not obvious even to the musician, but seen by the instrument maker is striking. Most of the joints are fit without gaps and are pre-tinned. Braces are precisely fit with just the right amount of play.

    The bell is a one piece design, but with a beautifully seamed gusset design. Excellent slide layout. One can manipulate most slides with little fuss. Hirsbrunner had two F-Tuba designs, this smaller and a larger model. Both could be had with piston valves as well, models and respectively. The Eb tubas also share many of the same components. Austrians with their Wiener designs and many of the northern Italian brass makers offered compact F-Tubas similar to the HB.

    When you set it next to a modern Melton or Miraphone, it feels like a large euphonium, although I think its almost the same size as a Miraphone Firebird. Super fast chunky paddles with Meinlschmidt It looks and feels expensive…although a small F-Tuba, its very heavy for its size.

    Unlike the vast majority of smaller F-Tubas, it actually has a euro shank sized receiver. The paddles fit my hand exactly, and after years of playing an F-Tuba with a lefthanded 5th valve, it was such a pleasure to have the fifth under my right thumb, not to mention the chonky thumb ring. A thumb throne, not a ring… A deep breath, blow and oh man, this thing plays like shit. I was disappointed to put it mildly. Ok, first things first, leakdown test and valve alignment done.

    Issues sorted, lets try this again. An excellent tuba by any standard. Very different to my preferred Symphonie. Where as the old Symphonie works so well because of its flexibility, the HB also works well, but by means of its weight. The sound is deeper and darker than any small F-Tuba has a right to be.

    Although not so mouthpiece sensitive, I found an old s Conn Helleberg and a Bach 7 to work best for me. One piece design, but with a pie wedge gusset As previously mentioned, the playing characteristics are quite far from my Symphonie F. Noticeably the Hirsbrunner had a high 3rd partial and the 5th valve is tuned too low for me. I spend a bit of time adjusting the slide lengths and tinkering with the gap and other setup issues. After practicing on the tuba for a few weeks, the 3rd partial is now fine without bending.

    One of the reasons I became drawn to older instruments is by their unique character. I recently visited a large brass showroom and tried a number of new tubas. Although most of them were fine instruments, the vast majority felt quite similar to me, regardless of the name on the bell.

    Notice the double bracing between the valves and body. In many ways the playbility and accessibility of modern tubas has made leaps and bounds. A modern F-Tuba is easier to play than this tuba and there are good options that cost far less than this tuba as well yet none of them seem sound quite like this. One wonders what the future holds?

    Flawless bending. Specs: ca.

    Throughout my college education, I have played the euphonium in several high-profile situations. I have also toured Japan where I performed solos on the euphonium with a wind symphony. All of this experience has put me in touch with some of the best euphonium players in the world, including Mark Jenkins and Brian Bowman.

    In fact, I performed in the All-State Band and as a second chair euphonium player to Mark Jenkins during all four years of high school. I was also in a western regional band that included Arizona and Nevada. The bottom line is, I know euphoniums, as well as what the professionals play and recommend. Choosing the Best Euphonium for Your Needs There is a lot of misinformation about the best euphonium to purchase for your needs.

    Performing on a Professional Level: Compensating Vs. Non-Compensating Euphoniums When I first started out, I went to the local music store to buy a new euphonium.

    The euphonium I ordered was supposed to be a compensating euphonium. When I went to pick up the instrument, they offered me a discount to take the incorrect instrument. I caved and purchased the non-compensating euphonium, and it was the worst decision I ever made in my performing career. My point is that you must get a compensating euphonium because it will allow you to perform on a professional level with proper intonation. It also makes it possible to perform the full range of the instrument.

    A non-compensating euphonium will not be able to play as low or play every note in the lower range. So if you follow no other advice, get a compensating euphonium. Baritone or Euphonium? There is a distinction between the best euphonium and the baritone. The baritone is a different instrument from the euphonium. But since the instrument plays in the same range as the euphonium, some bands will use a baritone in place of a euphonium in their band. The problem is that the sound is different.

    A baritone solo will have a more narrowly-defined sound similar to the sound you might expect from a trumpet or trombone. The euphonium is fuller and softer. It sounds more like a French horn without its edge. There is an old joke with euphonium players saying you can play only one articulation: legato. The main difference is that a baritone has a smaller bore and the bell tapers like a cornet.

    The euphonium has a larger bore that tapers like a flugelhorn. A euphonium also has a continuous taper , while the baritone tends to curve at the bell for a more directed sound. You can purchase a small bore that uses a European-style shank or a large bore euphonium that uses a larger shank.

    There are pros and cons to both, including: Large Euphonium or Not: If you want a large euphonium sound that will require more air and control, the large-bore euphonium may be a good fit for you.

    Instead, make sure you pick one that matches your size and ability. Test Them First: If you have narrowly defined lips, a small-bore euphonium may make more sense. The larger instruments may cause you to tire more quickly. The best way to find out what instrument you should get is to play each instrument for a week or so. Large music companies like West Music will allow you to do this. You can also go to your local music store to try out an instrument before going online. Try a large shank mouthpiece and a European shank mouthpiece.

    Balance Sound with Playability: The smaller shank mouthpieces provide more resistance, which can help you to slur between notes more easily. The larger shank mouthpieces put more of the focus on the strength of your embouchure, but I personally feel they provide a better sound even though they can make an instrument more difficult to perform.

    Instrument Plating and the Best Euphonium Sound The color of the instrument plating on higher-quality euphoniums should be either gold or silver. Besson makes some of the best-sounding instruments available on the market. However, these instruments also tend to have intonation issues. For this reason, I tend to avoid recommending a Besson instrument to a beginner student. The plating is important since it affects the overall sound of your instrument.

    The gold-plated euphonium will sound more brassy and comes closer in sound to what a trombone sounds like. The silver-plated euphoniums will have a more mellow sound that is more typical of your idiomatic euphonium sound.

    Valve Setup is Key There are two main types of setups when it comes to the placement of valves. The professional and traditional setup uses a setup with three valves at the top of the horn and one valve on the side.

    No matter what horn you choose, you should aim for this setup to develop good dexterity and coordination between the left and right hand. Forcing a student to switch as they become more advanced will create a lag in performance ability. Avoid the inline four-valve setup common on student-level horns. When possible, opt for an inferior quality horn that uses a traditional setup. While a student can upgrade as finances improve, it is best to learn the technical ability and coordination from using the left hand to support the instrument and activate the fourth valve early in the learning process.

    What About Plastic Euphoniums? This makes the instrument suitable for a child because the valve action is like a brass-based horn. They are also extremely affordable, so owning one of these instruments may fun to keep around for the professional player who wants a robust instrument that they can kick around a bit. The three top brands include Hirsbrunner, Willson and Besson.

    Most people consider the Hirsbrunner brand as the best manufacturer of euphoniums, but they only complete small runs of euphoniums. They have sold most of their euphonium-building operation to Adams. Due to the difficulty of finding a Hirsbrunner euphonium, this brand is not listed as the recommended choice.

    Some other brands to avoid include Conn, Jupiter, Tiger and any instruments that are convertible, multi-use or for marching.

    These instruments are not well-suited to concert band performances. Instead, look for the best euphonium from the more reputable, well-known instrument makers design and build. This euphonium has it all. It is a compensating euphonium that will make it easy for you to play in tune. The valves are short and responsive, which makes it the ideal instrument to play fast-moving lines. Beginners will have an easier time developing the finger strength necessary to play quickly.

    The quick-action also makes it easier for you to rip through any passage. Top Pick.

    The paddles fit my hand exactly, and after years of playing an F-Tuba with a lefthanded 5th valve, it was such a pleasure to have the fifth under my right thumb, not to mention the chonky thumb ring. A thumb throne, not a ring… A deep breath, blow and oh man, this thing plays like shit. I was disappointed to put it mildly. Ok, first things first, leakdown test and valve alignment done. Issues sorted, lets try this again.

    What is the best euphonium brand?

    An excellent tuba by any standard. Very different to my preferred Symphonie. Where as the old Symphonie works so well because of its flexibility, the HB also works well, but by means of its weight.

    The sound is deeper and darker than any small F-Tuba has a right to be. Although not so mouthpiece sensitive, I found an old s Conn Helleberg and a Bach 7 to work best for me. One piece design, but with a pie wedge gusset As previously mentioned, the playing characteristics are quite far from my Symphonie F.

    Noticeably the Hirsbrunner had a high 3rd partial and the 5th valve is tuned too low for me. I spend a bit of time adjusting the slide lengths and tinkering with the gap and other setup issues.

    Chuffed to bits! Exactly as described! Thanks a lot!

    Rip Through Any Passage: How to Choose the Best Euphonium for You

    Enjoying playing it is Enjoying playing it is really going to help in the next 9 weeks until the Area contest. Thank you again for everything I really due appreciate how straight forward you've made this and if I ever hear someone wanting to purchase an instrument I'll definitely be sending them your way. Thanks for all your help it's been a real easy hassle free trip and I will certainly recommend you to others.

    Haven't managed a blow yet as was midnight Haven't managed a blow yet as was midnight before I got home. Can't wait. What is the difference between a tuba and a euphonium? The main difference between a tuba and euphonium is that the tuba typically covers the lowest notes when played in an ensemble, and the euphonium plays a slightly higher range of notes. Tubas may be featured in marching bands.

    Hirsbrunner Euphonium

    What is the difference between a baritone and a euphonium? The euphonium is conical the tubing gradually gets bigger from the mouthpiece to the bell and the baritone is cylindrical it maintains a consistent bore size throughout the major portion of the instrument which means it has a brighter sound.

    Is baritone easier than trumpet? It takes a lot of practice to get it right.


    thoughts on “Hirsbrunner euphonium

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