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Thread: Dolnet Baritone

  1. #1

    Default Dolnet Baritone

    Im looking for a baritone saxophone with American Vintage sound and modern keywork.

    So I came across the Dolnets. French keywork, but a powerful American Vintage Sound.

    I have two different questions:

    There is a discussion about intonation problems most of the Dolnet saxophones will have. Is that true?

    Could a Dolnet low Bb be a better choice than a Low A baritone?

    Mike
    "More of me comes out when I improvise" -- Edward Hopper

  2. #2
    Distinguished SOTW Member Mal 2's Avatar
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    Default Re: Dolnet Baritone

    Quote Originally Posted by ehopper1 View Post
    Im looking for a baritone saxophone with American Vintage sound and modern keywork.

    So I came across the Dolnets. French keywork, but a powerful American Vintage Sound.
    Well... not exactly. The pinky cluster has the axles on the outside, which is the American style. French style would have converted over to Mark VI type pinky keys by then. It's a bit of a pinky buster, and if you try to use low A without the pinky Bb, it will be very, very stiff because the lever is short. It does work though, everything is linked the way you would expect.

    The "art deco" keys are distinctly Dolnet. Nobody else made them like that.

    Quote Originally Posted by ehopper1 View Post
    I have two different questions:

    There is a discussion about intonation problems most of the Dolnet saxophones will have. Is that true?
    I haven't followed the discussion, but the intonation problems I have are:


    Quote Originally Posted by ehopper1 View Post
    Could a Dolnet low Bb be a better choice than a Low A baritone?

    Mike
    If it plays in tune on the bell notes, then it probably is a better choice. You'd have to actually play it to know that though.
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    Distinguished SOTW Coffee Guru milandro's Avatar
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    Default Re: Dolnet Baritone

    just to get to know the beast that we are talking about here are a few pics, click several times until they expand

    I don't think that any Dolnets (except the High Pitch ones...... those are a bummer!) that I've tried have excessive intonation problems. Nothing compared to a wonder improved Conn stencil baritone that I had!This in particular is a very nice and good horn.








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    Default Re: Dolnet Baritone

    Quote Originally Posted by Mal 2 View Post
    All the BELL key notes are sharp. This one is not so easy to fix, but I'm mitigating it somewhat by placing an 18" segment of sprinkler pipe (blocked at both ends) vertically in the bell. It's held there with silicone so I can rip it out at a later date. This fixes B and Bb, but not A. I had to put a "choke ring" inside the bell to bring down the pitch of low A, but this also makes that note noticeably stuffy.[/LIST]
    .....wow.......

    ...I am just curious...does a Dolnet Bari really have a vintage American Bari Sound ????

    Because, IMHO...I wouldn't describe Dolnet tenors and altos as havng a Vintage American Sound...they are smoother/weeter sounding, more midrange overtones, less edgy than the classic American horns.....

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    Distinguished SOTW Coffee Guru milandro's Avatar
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    Default Re: Dolnet Baritone

    Quote Originally Posted by jayesf View Post
    .i am just curious...does a dolnet bari really have a vintage american bari sound ????

    Because, imho...i wouldn't describe dolnet tenors and altos as havng a vintage american sound...they are smoother/weeter sounding, more midrange overtones, less edgy than the classic american horns.....[/color]
    +1

  6. #6
    Distinguished SOTW Member Mal 2's Avatar
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    Default Re: Dolnet Baritone

    Quote Originally Posted by JayeSF View Post
    ...I am just curious...does a Dolnet Bari really have a vintage American Bari Sound ????

    Because, IMHO...I wouldn't describe Dolnet tenors and altos as havng a Vintage American Sound...they are smoother/weeter sounding, more midrange overtones, less edgy than the classic American horns.....
    I can't really say, I haven't played a vintage American bari since high school, and that was an out-of-adjustment Bundy (and no low A). In college I played a Mark VI and an SA80 (both low A), then I bought the Dolnet. Mechanically and ergonomically, the Dolnet is definitely inferior to either the Mark VI or the SA80! This is why I intend to send it off to Martin Mods in early 2010. I need it between now and then, and he already has my 1919 Buescher C-mel to finish.

    Soundwise, it somewhat resembles the Mark VI, maybe it's a little bit rounder through most of the range but edgier at the bottom. It is somewhat lacking in the "blow down walls" volume department, whereas the Mark VI was absolutely NOT lacking for power!
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    Distinguished SOTW Member bfoster64's Avatar
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    Default Re: Dolnet Baritone

    My opinion of the Dolnet bari is that it has a broad and fairly edgy sound. I own a Dolnet and I have played a nice cross-bar Conn 12M transitional bari. To compare, they both had the broad, spread sound associated with a big bore, but the Dolnet was noticeably brighter. I think the old Conn tenors and baris actually have a pretty smooth attack with a big dark core and not a lot of edge. The Dolnet seems different in that respect. It has the strong low-end fundamentals and spread like the Conns but there are more high partials in the tone. This is good if you want to cut through because my Dolnet doesn't seem to work very well with modern bari mouthpieces so I can't use a baffle or small chamber to get that edge.

  8. #8
    Distinguished SOTW Member Mal 2's Avatar
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    Default Re: Dolnet Baritone

    I do have the Dolnet bari available for sale over in this thread. The sprinkler pipe and other adjustments in the bell have been removed, although the palm key modifications remain. Due to difficulties encountered today regarding shipping, I WILL NOT SHIP outside the United States. This does not preclude offers from other places, but you must accept delivery (either personally or through a proxy) to an address in the U.S.
    SAX QUARTET (trio, sextet, etc.): Bandcamp (streaming), or Downloadable (MP3 and PDF).

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