Upgrading the HJ of a Yamaha 674
 

Upgrading the HJ of a Yamaha 674

Search Forums: 
    
[-]
Upgrading the HJ of a Yamaha 674    18:04 on Saturday, October 25, 2008 Vote for this post Vote against this post 0 votes

jose_luis
(2365 points)

Hi!

I am considering buying a "better" HJ for my Yamaha YFL674 (full silver, EC cut, open holes, B foot, offset G, thin wall).

But I am confused about so many makers and the logics of spending too much money in such a change. Mechanical adaptation of a new HJ to the YFL body could also be an issue.

Could you help me with some comments on suitable HJs for this instrument and (if you know) their aprox. price range?. I am not looking forward to buying only new HJs; used could also be OK.

I am a student on my 7th year of lessons and I do not intend to play professionally or anything near that.

I would like to have an instrument which I can play and enjoy for the next 5 years and that could help me in improving my playing, in the ways an upgraded HJ could do for a student like me.

Upgrading from my M2 Gemeinhardt to my present Yamaha was a jump ahead in several ways, but only after a somewhat difficult adaptation period that lasted a few months.

I apologize in case I was being too much confusing in my question....

[-]
Re: Upgrading the HJ of a Yamaha 674    05:42 on Sunday, October 26, 2008 Vote for this post Vote against this post 0 votes

pinkalo
(38 points)

It's all about the cut of the embouchure with headjoints - so the only suggestion I could give is to go to a good flute supplier and test out a lot of headjoints on your flute. Make a shortlist, then test them again! And take along a teacher or a friend to help you with the opinion on how it sounds. But mostly it's how you feel while playing it that is important.



[-]
Re: Upgrading the HJ of a Yamaha 674    16:35 on Sunday, October 26, 2008 Vote for this post Vote against this post 0 votes

jose_luis
(2365 points)

Thanks. But not possible here in Madrid.
I might try London stores, but this is quite costly and I would not like to go there without previous contact and without any idea about what I could find suited.

[-]
Re: Upgrading the HJ of a Yamaha 674    17:20 on Sunday, October 26, 2008 Vote for this post Vote against this post 0 votes

jose_luis
(2365 points)

I believe Spain is not the best place to find shops willing to ship anything in trial.
I do not know of any flute show here in Spain (also not in western Europe). If you know of any, please let me know as I could travel in Europe rather easily. But travelling to USA is too expensive for me in this moment (with the possible exception of a few destinations), but I am not considering this possibility for now.
What brands/models would you suggest to start searching?

[-]
Re: Upgrading the HJ of a Yamaha 674    17:47 on Sunday, October 26, 2008 Vote for this post Vote against this post 0 votes

jose_luis
(2365 points)

To be 1000% honest, I am thinking of a Nagahara HJ.
But this is completely intuitive; never tried one and I do not know their price range..

[-]
Re: Upgrading the HJ of a Yamaha 674    18:37 on Sunday, October 26, 2008 Vote for this post Vote against this post 0 votes

Tibbiecow
(480 points)

I think you might have another long (but not as long as the first) adjustment period before you get a consistently fantastic response from a new headjoint.

On the other hand, you might blow into a new headjoint only once and know THAT is the one.

I've had it both ways. I paid $1500 US for a Powell Philharmonic cut wood headjoint. I loved it at first blow, but wasn't able to keep it up to pitch for the first couple of weeks.

I also bought a Miyazawa MZ-5 off eBay for $350, thinking that if I didn't like it I could probably sell it for what money I had into it. I didn't really like it, and not any better than the HJ choiced I had, so I planned to sell it. I never listed it online, and nobody who tried it in person fell in love with it. I played it every now and then, and eventually came to like it. Now it is absolutely the silver HJ that I prefer, I don't want to sell it. I learned with it, and now I get a fabulous tone with volume in the really low end. I also managed to get the pitch in the high end under control with it.

When I was trying HJs, I found the Prima Sankyo NRS-1 to be very similar to the Yamaha EC cut. That's only my own opinion, but of the two I liked the Sankyo a bit better. Anyway, if I had already HAD the EC-cut HJ with my flute I would never have bothered to replace it with the Sankyo. (I replaced a weird, not-quite symmetrical handcut CY headjoint that came with my flute. I'm pretty sure that nobody else bought my particular Yamaha 881 flute because of this headjoint, and the fact that it was a C-foot. With a different HJ, most people LOVE my flute and can't believe that I bought it for $1800.)

[-]
Re: Upgrading the HJ of a Yamaha 674    15:41 on Monday, October 27, 2008 Vote for this post Vote against this post 0 votes

Plekto
(423 points)

On the other hand, you might blow into a new headjoint only once and know THAT is the one.
****
So true. You have to try a bunch. For me, it was a love of wood flutes but an outright loathing of no-tech applications (other than Yamaha and a couple of others).

So a wood headjoint was a perfect "fit".

http://www.headjoints.com/
Of course, the nearest "dealer" to you in in the UK. I hear that the Powell wood headjoints are similar though.

I'm a fan of Powell, as well, that is, IF you can afford one.(used=good) But you can get any option that you desire, pretty much as well. I also like Yamaha though - tough and decently priced bodies(headjoints I give a solid 6-7 out of 10, though)

If you can, try a wood headjoint as well.

[-]
Re: Upgrading the HJ of a Yamaha 674    04:57 on Tuesday, October 28, 2008 Vote for this post Vote against this post 0 votes

jose_luis
(2365 points)

What about allflutes plus in London? Or any other shop in that city?
Travelling to London from here is cheap and easy. Not so much cheap local transportation and staying there, but I could afford it.

[-]
Re: Upgrading the HJ of a Yamaha 674    05:06 on Tuesday, October 28, 2008 Vote for this post Vote against this post 0 votes

jose_luis
(2365 points)

Thanks Pletko, I could try a wooden HJ and find myself, but right now I think it is not for me and I am also concerned about big weather differences as humidity (usually under 40% here in Madrid) and the like.

Thanks Ann, but who and where is Jonathan Myall? I may contact Jim Lyman in a few days when I get more clear about what I want.

Thank you Tibbiecow for sharing your experience. It is most useful for me. I think the process of finding a new HK can be quite a thrill


[-]
Re: Upgrading the HJ of a Yamaha 674    19:04 on Wednesday, October 29, 2008 Vote for this post Vote against this post 0 votes

pinkalo
(38 points)

I'd second the recommendation of Jonathan myall, it's where I go and they are simply lovely people.

You really can't order a headjoint on recommendation - you NEED to try them.

[-]
Re: Upgrading the HJ of a Yamaha 674    05:05 on Thursday, October 30, 2008 Vote for this post Vote against this post 0 votes

jose_luis
(2365 points)

For the moment I've got a positive response from Des Taylos @ All flutes plus in London. It seems a trial in Madrid could be arranged with three HJ: Nagahara (my intuitive choice), Powell and Andrew Oxley (they say that the three fit a Yamaha body). It is very important the trial takes place here in Madrid and not abroad, so that also my teacher can judge the results.

I will also contact J. Myall next week.

Thank you for all the input.

<Added>

Taylos = Taylor

[-]
Re: Upgrading the HJ of a Yamaha 674    18:18 on Friday, October 31, 2008 Vote for this post Vote against this post 0 votes

Zevang
(491 points)

jose luis, may I suggest you to search for Mr.Faulisi in Paris (I believe he is at the NET too).
I know of his good job in making headjoints plus you might have the chance of trying them.

regards,
Zevang

[-]
Re: Upgrading the HJ of a Yamaha 674    17:55 on Tuesday, November 11, 2008 Vote for this post Vote against this post 0 votes

jose_luis
(2365 points)

I want to thank for all your comments and contributions.

But I have decided not to buy a new HJ for a few reasons, at least for the moment.

The most important is that the price in Europe for the one I was most interested (sterling silver DA Nagahara with 14K gold riser) is so high compared to USA (about 50% more) that puts es it out of my budget. Buying in USA is possible, but without prior trial and there is also an issue with the wall thickness that created too many doubts.

The high local price also limits the possibility of a home trial in Europe because I find it unethical to request some HJs for trial, knowing in advance that I will not buy any because of the price.

Right now I see no alternative and I decided to concentrate in improving my tone with the Yamaha EC I have. I may travel to London or Paris in the future and try the HJ on site (albeit no teacher to assess the possible improvement)

Another important reason is that my teacher tried my flute last Monday and she could get a sound out of it so good and as she says, so easily, (including thos notes I have problems with) that it proves that the flute is OK and very good but that I have a long road to go and work with this HJ.

In any case, my short search has been very interesting and I learnt many things in it.

Again, thank you.


[-]
Re: Upgrading the HJ of a Yamaha 674    04:21 on Wednesday, November 12, 2008 Vote for this post Vote against this post 0 votes

jose_luis
(2365 points)

I think there is a certain pleasure in the quest for new equipment and I could be doing it for this reason.

Not a bad reason, provided one could spend that money unnecessarily and just for the pleasure....and the of hope of a faster improvement.

Sometimes a strong conviction could work miracles, even with my flute tone!


[-]
Re: Upgrading the HJ of a Yamaha 674    12:38 on Wednesday, November 12, 2008 Vote for this post Vote against this post 0 votes

Concert_Flute
(25 points)

The subjectivity of headjoints never ceases to amaze me. I have had (past tense) a reasonable amount of experience with the Yamaha EC, and I still currently play a Sankyo with an NRS-1 headjoint occassionally.

I was really surprised that Tibbiecow found the NRS-1 to be "similar" to the Yamaha EC. T..cow did say that the NRS-1 was better, which I can somewhat agree there, (depending on the two specific heads being evaluated), but the designs of the two are fairly DIS-similar. I could always get a good clean sound on the EC, but the NRS-1 is more unique. For me, it has more versatility, and can articulate better. If I don't play it often enough, I tend to sound a little too airy on it, but re-calibrate myself in brief time. It is not my best HJ, but it is an easier blower in comparison. I find the NRS-1 more useful with certain music. For more serious tone and articulation-conscious playing, my newer Muramatsu is serving me nicely. I was ambivalent about it at first, but I eventually realized it was what I needed for personal improvement. I wanted to go after the "holy grail" flute, but financial constraints led to a more realistic acquisition. (At least for now, keeping the faith).

It is especially true that what a person is used to only seems better initially, but many times the diliked headjoint could be the one best for personal improvement. That's why, at times, it makes sense to take a good reputable cut that you find comfortable, and work to improve yourself with it, until it is the obvious bottleneck to further growth. The resources required to really find the eternally perfect headjoint may make more sense for the consummate professional within a specific genre of music.

Since I currently maintain two soprano flutes, an alto flute, a one-key barouque flute, an Irish flute (no keys), and a fife!, I try to stick with flutes where the embouchures, and/or the fingerings of notes, don't contradict each other in a way that messes with my psyche or affects my abilities too adversely. I've been rather fortunate in this area.

When I was learning tenor sax, I was always blaming the equipment, and after a few saxes, many mouthpieces, and even more reeds, I learned all there was to know about what my equipment could do for me and what different setups could produce, if worked properly. So now I could just play, without worrying about if I should just buy yet another mouthpiece, or whatever. So, if you need to experiment, just go for it, it's all part of the growth experience. Above all, ENJOY !!


   





This forum: Older: Is a 4 yo Yamaha beginner flute too old? Should I buy a new one?
 Newer: Let`s Make a Facebook Page!



8notes in other languages:
             


 
© 2000-2014 8notes.com