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  1. #1

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    Default Taishan Saxophones

    Has anyone played or heard anything about Taishan alto saxophones? I saw some ebay but I haven't found too much information about them.

    Here is a link in case you want to check them out: http://www.ebay.com/itm/Professional...item3a6abb28f8

  2. #2
    Distinguished SOTW Coffee Guru milandro's Avatar
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    Default Re: Taishan Saxophones

    Chinese saxophones , http://taishan.en.ecplaza.net/ made ny Taishan , you are unlikely to find any information on line .

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    Bloo Dog's Avatar
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    Default Re: Taishan Saxophones

    Taishan had a better webpage the last time that I checked. It's really a manufacturer, not just a trading company as so many saxophone "manufacturers" listed in ecplaza and madeinchina.com. I know that a member of SOTW had some dealings with this company awhile back. Maybe he'll chime in.
    The absolute real reason I continue is the free shrimp at the cocktail hour. It's the little things.--- Rich Maraday

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    Default Re: Taishan Saxophones

    Apparently I was told the ebay seller taishan20085188 is not the same as the TaiShan Guanyue company, but from another reputable company, whatever that means haha.

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    Default Re: Taishan Saxophones

    I bought a Taishan straight sop from the ebay seller listed above, it took a few weeks to arrive as I think he/she gets them made from the factory.

    It arrived well packaged.
    First impressions.... I'd ordered a black nickel finish and I couldn't complain the finish was very well done.

    Playing....

    This is were I had a problem.. I really struggled to get the low notes, it kept breaking into the upper register. I'd had an Earlham sop years ago and didn't remember having such a problem.

    I've tried a few mouth piece and reed combo's some of which helped a little.

    I own a few saxes and having been an engineer most of my life really like taking things apart, I've recently bought some sax tools etc and started tinkering.

    So I decided to rip the Taishan down to see if I could find anything....well i have.

    Here goes...



    This is the Taishan after some work. What I found is that virtually all the palm key and the other 2 upper tone holes had surfaces as flat as volcanoes. I bought a diamond tone hole file set, to go over all the holes. The factory had filed one hole 1/3 the way down but it still needed tweaking, only one tone hole was flat from the factory the rest were not.
    The palm key holes were roughly 0.7/1.0mm uneven, no attempt had been made to level them.

    I've now got them all absolutely level.

    The next thing I found was what they used to stick the pads in with..... I had tried to re-seat the pads but they wouldn't stay put, I found out why when I took one out. You won't need heat to remove them as they seem to be put in with a clear sticky glue that never goes hard, it's a cheapo glue and way to stick the pads in.

    I've bought some new black roo pads and shellac to do a proper job.



    The next thing wrong....... The smaller keys on the upper stack had quiet a bit of slack in them as did the octave key mech. I've got the tools to take the slack out and have been able to fix this, the lower stack were fine.


    So would I buy a Taishan again? Yes - I can fix the probs myself.....and it will be a good sax when I'm done, plus I like taking things apart - all good experience.

    Would I buy if I had to pay to get it working? >>>> No - just not worth all the cost...

    It's a shame really as with just a little more time spent in the factory these could be really good little sax's, I suppose it's a typical Chinese engineering thing.

    I've heard people say they've bought a Taishan Bari and they were marvellous - I wonder if they had really had a good look?

    It hasn't put me buying a Taishan Bari though.. I hope this has been helpful....

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    Default Re: Taishan Saxophones

    Carbon: Thanks for this post. I am not a repair tech but I can appreciate what you reported. I recall another thread implying these were good-quality Chinese saxophones. Hmmm . . .
    just corroborates my overall impression of the Chinese saxophone-thing. There are many threads opened with the basic premise that the OP wants to get a soprano but is unwilling to pay much. You gets what you pay for, to use poor grammar.

    A friend of mine owned a music store a while back and bought a bunch of cheap (I use that term rather than "inexpensive" because CHEAP seems SO much more accurate) altos. Then, he tore them down and re-padded, re-corked, etc. I played one and it was a fine player. I recall the brand was MONIQUE but not sure. Anyway, that experience and your post tells me that if the Chinese put some effort into it, they could make decent saxophones. But for those looking to save a few bucks, I'm betting the end up with a huge disappointment and the loss of whatever they paid the first time around. And I know some of you have your favorite CHEAP CHinese models . . . DAVE
    Dave

  7. #7
    Distinguished SOTW Member CONN-hunter's Avatar
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    Default Re: Taishan Saxophones

    Hi there. I got my Taishan curved soprano yesterday bought on eBay from the eBay seller...

    Member id musical_shop168


    Very well packaged it arrived 3 weeks after the purchase. The seller had to wait 8 days because Taishan was in delay finishing his order due to the Christmas time.

    I didn't play the little thing yet. Busy making shopping with the family.
    But yesterday I took the sax out , remove the rubber pieces between the mechanics and pads and started cheking the little curved.

    Well, I can tell at the very first look that it is NOT in the same level of finish of the Taiwanese made instruments.
    The toneholes don't seem to be exact made as the Taiwanese ones, the entirely mechanic look less sturdy the compared to the Taiwanese curveds (I own a maxtone curved also, which has everything better, at least visually)

    Well, as David said "you get what you pay for" and for 435 U$ maybe we are going to the upper limit for this sax. I think the cost of so one would be around 200U$, maybe less.
    The pads are OK but again not in the same quality as they from the Taiwanese Instruments.

    The case looks nice. Looks! the quality is also poor. It gives pretty good protection to the horn but it is not gonna a last for ages.

    Yeah, now. Tomorrow I wish to give my first blow on it with my Runyon Custom.
    I looks like the pads are sealing the holes so far. It is looking good.
    Wondering if the sound is good.

    Taishan is supposed to be the best Chinese branch. Venus is made by another factory and has the bell keys on the right side with a more alto like pinky table.
    The plastic MPC looks good for me. The facing is the more acurate made I've ever seen on a Chinese mouthpiece.
    All visual impressions from a guy who played more than 1 hundred mpc's and some dozens saxophones.
    435 U$ is for me too much to invest on this quality, better invest 1,000 U$ and buy smth more consistent with perfect pads and astonishing well drawn toneholes but maybe the sound will blow me away.



    will report

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    Forum Contributor 2013 BrianMitchellBrody's Avatar
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    Default Re: Taishan Saxophones

    Quote Originally Posted by CONN-hunter View Post
    Hi there. I got my Taishan curved soprano yesterday bought on eBay from the eBay seller...

    Member id musical_shop168


    Very well packaged it arrived 3 weeks after the purchase. The seller had to wait 8 days because Taishan was in delay finishing his order due to the Christmas time.

    I didn't play the little thing yet. Busy making shopping with the family.
    But yesterday I took the sax out , remove the rubber pieces between the mechanics and pads and started cheking the little curved.

    Well, I can tell at the very first look that it is NOT in the same level of finish of the Taiwanese made instruments.
    The toneholes don't seem to be exact made as the Taiwanese ones, the entirely mechanic look less sturdy the compared to the Taiwanese curveds (I own a maxtone curved also, which has everything better, at least visually)

    Well, as David said "you get what you pay for" and for 435 U$ maybe we are going to the upper limit for this sax. I think the cost of so one would be around 200U$, maybe less.
    The pads are OK but again not in the same quality as they from the Taiwanese Instruments.

    The case looks nice. Looks! the quality is also poor. It gives pretty good protection to the horn but it is not gonna a last for ages.

    Yeah, now. Tomorrow I wish to give my first blow on it with my Runyon Custom.
    I looks like the pads are sealing the holes so far. It is looking good.
    Wondering if the sound is good.

    Taishan is supposed to be the best Chinese branch. Venus is made by another factory and has the bell keys on the right side with a more alto like pinky table.
    The plastic MPC looks good for me. The facing is the more acurate made I've ever seen on a Chinese mouthpiece.
    All visual impressions from a guy who played more than 1 hundred mpc's and some dozens saxophones.
    435 U$ is for me too much to invest on this quality, better invest 1,000 U$ and buy smth more consistent with perfect pads and astonishing well drawn toneholes but maybe the sound will blow me away.



    will report
    I am sorry to hear you did not end up being happy with your horn at first impression.

    There seems to be a rather large inconsistency in the "finishing" of the sopranos because although my is not marked Taishan it seems to be the same manufacturer
    but when I hear the last 2 or 3 post concerning build I am now perplexed because my JB copper has very level tone holes, and the pads albeit not the VERY best they are leather and sealing very well, no loose rods, all blue tempered springs, copper bell etc...and the sound is very very good.

    The only comment on build is that the bow is epoxied on rather clamped but as long as it is sealing this is insignificant to me.

    Would it benefit from tweaking with more reputable pads and resos and some adjustments to the action, probably; but I have played it for a little over a week so far and perhaps I just got lucky.

    I also benefitted for receiving the horn with a CE WINDS Metal case so I got an upgrade.

    B
    “We are what we repeatedly do.
    Excellence then, is not an act, but a habit.”
    ~Aristotle

  9. #9
    Distinguished SOTW Member CONN-hunter's Avatar
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    Default Re: Taishan Saxophones

    Hi!

    oh, I am not that disappointed at all. We get what we pay for and I've being honest to the horn telling what I see.
    Once you own a German made Keilwerth or the best Taiwanese sax available you learn what quality means. That is.
    Being just to the Taishan it is looking ways better than earlier made Chinese saxophones. The pads quality increased a lot.
    The horn is OK, just not in the same level as Taiwanese saxophones, for sure not and I'd not buy a Yanagisawa or even an expensive Taiwanese now, therefore this one will fix the gap .

    cheers

    Will post some pics on the thread "Taishan curved soprano"

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    KingSax Productions's Avatar
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    Default Re: Taishan Saxophones

    I am new to this forum, and almost as new to the latest going on with saxophones, although I have been around awhile. I have owned and unfortunately sold-off (biggest mistake of my life) Selmer Mark VI/VII saxophones, and I've been wanting to get back into playing, even performing live with bands again. I been doing a fair amount of research and even playing on different horns at several music stores, as I don't see myself laying-out thousands of dollars for saxophones any more in my lifetime. ...SURE, I would like to play on a Selmer, Yani, or Antigua, but the price-point is not going to make that possible.

    I temporarily have an Anaxa tenor which was sent to me by mistake (was supposed to be a Hawk). From my conversations w/ distributors, It seems both of these brands are the same horn from the same factory in China and the same distributor in CA, and they stamp different brand names on them depending which stores/distributors they send them to. The Anaxa does blow freely and have a great sound, BUT it is 1) out of tune, 2) the shield for the B/Bb keys on the bell is warped and 3) some of the keys are out of adjustment and several post screws weren't even tightened-down. Summing-up, this is stuff I can fix, but I guess I'm still in amazement that I could even GET a horn like this for around $300. My first crap-student model horn in 1972, a Selmer Bundy w/ rubber pads, cost my parents $300 back then! Well, aside from this, I'm planning on getting several horns, but the quality of the aforementioned Hawk/Anaxa isn't going to work for me.

    I have been looking at the Taishan saxophones on their MAIN website at http://www.taishan-guanyue.com/english/index.php (not the distributor sites). As mentioned previously, they apparently are touted to be the top manufacturer of quality horns in China, but I am disappointed that there is 1) not a lot of info, and 2) I can't tell the differences between the alto models (660/661/875/4900/5000) and which models are better than the others. As far as I can tell, their top model is the TSAS-875, or it could be the TSAS-5000. I can't tell. The 875 is the only one that references having imported Italian leather pads. Does anyone on this thread know the answer to this? I've sent e-mail inquiries out to them hoping to get an answer back from them. I'm eventually looking to get an alto, tenor, & soprano over a period of time. At this price-point, the Taishan horns could be a great solution, as long as they play well.

    However, still undecided, as I am also looking at some great clearances prices for some LA Sax "Series 1" & "Big Lip" horns, and the Just Saxes website's "Crescent" brand horns (however, someone said they may no longer be available). Bottom line is....it won't be a top-of-the-line horn or a piece of junk, but hopefully a good very playable horn. It doesn't have to be perfect, but I am particular to some degree. Beneath the bottom line is....what can you or are you willing to spend? $400....$600....$900....or $1,200 for a horn. I know we usually (in life) get what we pay for, but truthfully, that doesn't ALWAYS hold true 100% of the time (just read some of the reviews on this website where people got GREAT horns for a lot less).

  11. #11
    Ben Marrow's Avatar
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    Default Re: Taishan Saxophones

    Quote Originally Posted by KingSax Productions View Post
    I am new to this forum, and almost as new to the latest going on with saxophones, although I have been around awhile. I have owned and unfortunately sold-off (biggest mistake of my life) Selmer Mark VI/VII saxophones, and I've been wanting to get back into playing, even performing live with bands again. I been doing a fair amount of research and even playing on different horns at several music stores, as I don't see myself laying-out thousands of dollars for saxophones any more in my lifetime. ...SURE, I would like to play on a Selmer, Yani, or Antigua, but the price-point is not going to make that possible.

    I temporarily have an Anaxa tenor which was sent to me by mistake (was supposed to be a Hawk). From my conversations w/ distributors, It seems both of these brands are the same horn from the same factory in China and the same distributor in CA, and they stamp different brand names on them depending which stores/distributors they send them to. The Anaxa does blow freely and have a great sound, BUT it is 1) out of tune, 2) the shield for the B/Bb keys on the bell is warped and 3) some of the keys are out of adjustment and several post screws weren't even tightened-down. Summing-up, this is stuff I can fix, but I guess I'm still in amazement that I could even GET a horn like this for around $300. My first crap-student model horn in 1972, a Selmer Bundy w/ rubber pads, cost my parents $300 back then! Well, aside from this, I'm planning on getting several horns, but the quality of the aforementioned Hawk/Anaxa isn't going to work for me.

    I have been looking at the Taishan saxophones on their MAIN website at http://www.taishan-guanyue.com/english/index.php (not the distributor sites). As mentioned previously, they apparently are touted to be the top manufacturer of quality horns in China, but I am disappointed that there is 1) not a lot of info, and 2) I can't tell the differences between the alto models (660/661/875/4900/5000) and which models are better than the others. As far as I can tell, their top model is the TSAS-875, or it could be the TSAS-5000. I can't tell. The 875 is the only one that references having imported Italian leather pads. Does anyone on this thread know the answer to this? I've sent e-mail inquiries out to them hoping to get an answer back from them. I'm eventually looking to get an alto, tenor, & soprano over a period of time. At this price-point, the Taishan horns could be a great solution, as long as they play well.

    However, still undecided, as I am also looking at some great clearances prices for some LA Sax "Series 1" & "Big Lip" horns, and the Just Saxes website's "Crescent" brand horns (however, someone said they may no longer be available). Bottom line is....it won't be a top-of-the-line horn or a piece of junk, but hopefully a good very playable horn. It doesn't have to be perfect, but I am particular to some degree. Beneath the bottom line is....what can you or are you willing to spend? $400....$600....$900....or $1,200 for a horn. I know we usually (in life) get what we pay for, but truthfully, that doesn't ALWAYS hold true 100% of the time (just read some of the reviews on this website where people got GREAT horns for a lot less).
    I absolutely recommend Taishan horns. I just received a new Taishan tenor sax from ebay seller taishan20085188. It is the TSTS 670 model. I have to say it's a phenomenal horn, period. It took about a week to get from China to Fort Worth. Straight out of the box it played top to bottom with great intonation and ease. Good overtones and altissimo. Clear, rich tone. Feels good in the hands. It's on the heavier side (which might be a good thing). $580 bucks, shipped. The case is pretty good too. I'm eager to give one of their baritones a try.
    -Ben

  12. #12

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    Default Re: Taishan Saxophones

    I've played the Bari. It was ok, but very cheap feeling. I rented one that appeared to be brand new. The case was very poor quality, and had pieces falling off of it in three days. The horn looked nice, and played ok. If you absolutely had to have a bari, I guess it is one.

    While playing, the metal felt weak, and "mushy." It didn't sound bad. Intonation was ok, not great, but not horrible.

    Ergonomically, it felt like the left hand keys were about 1-2 inches lower than they should have been.

    I played three gigs on it, and returned it.

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    Default Re: Taishan Saxophones

    Quote Originally Posted by Ben Marrow View Post
    I absolutely recommend Taishan horns. I just received a new Taishan tenor sax from ebay seller taishan20085188. It is the TSTS 670 model. I have to say it's a phenomenal horn, period. It took about a week to get from China to Fort Worth. Straight out of the box it played top to bottom with great intonation and ease. Good overtones and altissimo. Clear, rich tone. Feels good in the hands. It's on the heavier side (which might be a good thing). $580 bucks, shipped. The case is pretty good too. I'm eager to give one of their baritones a try.
    Ben:

    I just ordered one Wednesday and it's great to read your very current endorsement of the product. I ordered the same horn in the antique finish . I had read largely positive reviews from a variety of sources and hope that mine matches yours.

    I had bought a Pan Am (Conn 10m stencil) but returned it to the seller as "good condition" was code for "project horn". No beef with the seller who was very professional!

    Did you get any shipping notification or did it just show up? I would like to be home to receive it rather than having it left on my doorstep.

    Last question, were there any customs duties due?

    Sent from my Nexus 6 using Tapatalk

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    Ben Marrow's Avatar
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    Default Re: Taishan Saxophones

    In response to the questions posted by John:

    Shipping was easy. I followed the tracking link available on ebay and it kept me updated. The postman missed me on the first attempted delivery and left a note. I had it delivered the next day with no problem. There were no customs duties with either sax I ordered from China. I hope all works out well with your purchase, John. Pm me and let me know!
    -Ben

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    Ben:

    Thanks. Mine shipped Friday, I'm hoping it is here before the weekend!

    I assume you're just as happy now as when you received it.

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    Ben Marrow's Avatar
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    Default Re: Taishan Saxophones

    Yes, after a month of 2-3 hours daily it's great.
    -Ben

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    Mine Arrived today. 5 days shipping from China to my door.

    It was sturdily packed in a Styrofoam outer shell, which looks to be about an inch thick on all sides.

    ForumRunner_20150401_130507.jpg

    Inside, the case is wrapped in a plastic bag.

    ForumRunner_20150401_130544.jpg

    Inside the case everything is wrapped on plastic:

    ForumRunner_20150401_130623.jpg

    The main body of the instrument is double wrapped for extra care.

    ForumRunner_20150401_130710.jpg

    This is the antique yellow finish which looks like a brushed matte finish. Exactly what I was looking for, and better than expected in person

    ForumRunner_20150401_130834.jpg

    You can see the green Styrofoam but the small red wedges which acted as key clamps are unlikely visible. Every key was clamped.

    Finally there's a shot of the engraving which shows up better than expected.

    ForumRunner_20150401_131036.jpg

    I have not play tested yet, but the initial feel of the keys is good. The action is not too hard and feels nimble under the fingers. The only out of the box issue is the front F key. I'd like to see that down lower to the L1 key so that it is easier to reach. I'm sure my tech can get that when he gives it the initial setup/adjustments.

    I paid about the same price as Ben (I did use the Best Offer option and got it down a little lower).

    I'm looking forward to play testing after work. No sound clips, as I am not public ready yet After some months in the wood shed I'll pick up a Link NY or a Vandoren Large chamber or a Selmer Metal Jazz. For now, its the cheap factory mouthpiece or the Selmer metal jazz knock off.

    Regards,

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