My Barone Classic Tenor will be here in a week
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Thread: My Barone Classic Tenor will be here in a week

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    Default My Barone Classic Tenor will be here in a week

    Based on the posts here on SOTW as well as various blogs, I purchased a Barone Classic tenor in satin finish a few days ago. It'll be here in a few days.

    I've been playing ever since I could hold a saxophone. I'm 42 now. 5 years ago I moved to Florida and had to leave my soul/funk band behind. I just didn't have the desire to go through finding another band. Being that I moved to southwest Florida, I didn't hold out high hopes of finding another funk band to play with. So I sold my horns.

    Fast forward. I got the "itch" a couple of months ago. After a quick Craigslist post I found a really great funk band that I want to sit in with! Crazy! So I decided to go ahead with the purchase.

    I've owned the following notable tenors:

    Keilwerth SX90R in satin nickel/gold
    Guardala black nickel w/silver keywork (the silver tarnished, what a pain)
    Selmer MKVI that was set up by Emilio Lyons

    I sold the MKVI for crazy money.

    That brings me to the Barone. I don't want to get back into the cycle of paying multiple thousands of dollars for a saxophone again. I don't want to be terrified of someone knocking my horn over on stage. Been there, done that.

    So I'm keeping my fingers crossed. At $1750, I'm not expecting Keilwerth quality, but I'm hoping that the Barone will be able to deliver something that makes me want to continue to play and most importantly sound halfway decent.

    I'll post my thoughts once I get it and I'll have my awesome tech have a go with it. This will be interesting!

    Fingers crossed!

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    Default Re: My Barone Classic Tenor will be here in a week

    Welcome! And, looking forward to the review (including sound clips)!

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    Default Re: My Barone Classic Tenor will be here in a week

    Good luck... IMHO, you can't go wrong with some taiwanese horns (Barone, Viking, Mauriat, TK, MacSax, Eastman 52nd...). I've tried some and got impressed. My main horn nowadays is a tenor Barone Classic gold lacquered...

    Enjoy your Barone!

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    Default Re: My Barone Classic Tenor will be here in a week

    There's nothing about the fit, finish, playability or sound of my silver Barone Classic tenor that has to take a back seat to any of my "big name tenors". Barone's are just amazing value for the money. Phil's set up on mine is still tight and true after nearly 2 years, plus he's great to work with. I'm pretty sure you'll be more than happy with your Barone Classic. Hope you'll post your experience and impressions with your new Barone. That satin finish is beautiful.

    P.S. Did you order a Barone mouthpiece with you tenor? Phil's pieces are terrific. I just ordered one of his 8* Vintage tenor mouthpieces to go with my 7*.

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    Default Re: My Barone Classic Tenor will be here in a week

    Hey Bluto, my purchase included a Soundmaster mouthpiece. I don't know if I will keep it or not as I already have an SR Technologies Pro that I really love. I'm pretty picky about my horns and mouthpieces...it'll be here in two days and I'm really looking forward to seeing it. And as to the finish, I was almost going to order a bare brass or antique bare brass. However, after a call to Phil he said the Satin finish is one of his favorites. So that is what I ordered!

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    Default Re: My Barone Classic Tenor will be here in a week

    Keep us up to date. I've also owned several Keilwerths including a nickle silver model, two Mk VIs, multiple H. Coufs, a Selmer Series II, plus a plethora of other tenors. While I gig on my Yamaha 82Z (with a Barone neck) my Barone Classic is a great back-up horn and certainly competition to the big names.

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    Default Re: My Barone Classic Tenor will be here in a week

    My Barone Classic tenor came in today. No damage to the box or horn...that's great news! I did not bother playing it...I took it straight to my tech, Craig Christman, who is also a very accomplished saxophonist. Craig's first impressions were the same as mine. It appears to be well built. The satin finish is beautiful just like Phil Barone said it would be. I'm very pleased with the choice of finish...thanks, Phil! Just enough engraving. The pads have a satisfying pop to them and seem to be seating just fine. The keywork feels a little heavy and a little slow to me compared to other new horns I've owned. Nice springs, bumpers and pearls. It has a nice weight to it and feels really good in my hands. This is a horn for larger hands, for sure. I have a first knuckle amputation on my left ring finger (from the nail) but will not need to modify the horn to reach that key because of the large key layout. For comparison, I had to modify my Guardala by attaching a formed plastic extension as that keywork layout was a much smaller fit. So good news there as well!

    I'm having Craig set it up....he will go through it from top to bottom and adjust it to lighten up and speed up the action. And if any tone holes are off he will correct those as well. Overall, Craig thought it was very workable. He said it's going to be a very different horn when I get it back from him. If I wasn't so picky I'd just play it out of the box and more than likely be happy. As soon as I get it back I'll share more of my thoughts.

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    Default Re: My Barone Classic Tenor will be here in a week

    Quote Originally Posted by JCSWFL View Post
    He said it's going to be a very different horn when I get it back from him.
    It will still be a Barone. It will still play great like a Barone (e.g. like a much more expensive pro horn). It will still sound great like a Barone. Just one that has been set up to your taste so you can experience maximum enjoyment from it. Looking forward to your thoughts.

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    Default Re: My Barone Classic Tenor will be here in a week

    Great move to take it directly to your tech who sounds very competent!

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    Default Re: My Barone Classic Tenor will be here in a week

    Hope you are enjoying the horn.

    I've been playing mine for about 4 years or so and still love it.

    Good to hear that Phil is still doing business. Have not seen him here for some time now.

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    Default Re: My Barone Classic Tenor will be here in a week

    Ok, I wanted to follow up on my Barone Tenor. I finally received it back from my tech last week. He had adjusted key heights and loosened up the action.

    My initial impression: pretty darn amazing. I didn't expect this horn to end up being so free blowing with a HUGE bottom end. I am completely thrilled and have really enjoyed the color that I can get out of this instrument. As I stated above, I've been playing (with various bands) for going on 30 years now. Plus, I'm probably the pickiest person you'd ever run into when it comes to assessing quality.

    1. Intonation. Spot on up and down the register. It has the same or better intonation than any other horn I've owned. And I've owned a ton of them.

    2. Fit and Finish. It's a heavy horn (maybe a downside to some). Fortunately I was able to buy a Spinstrap before they quit making them and it works great to support the extra weight. Very solid and well made. Does not feel cheap in my hands. Definitely for larger hands as I stated in my first post. The satin finish is beautiful. I'm glad I went with this finish vs traditional lacquer or bare brass.

    3. Keywork. As I stated in my post above, the keywork was really heavy and tight when it came in. A few weeks of waiting and $125 later it is smooth and light. It's a different horn after being set up. The pearls are beautiful. My only negative so far is the octave key needs adjustment after playing it for a few days so the middle D/E isn't stuffy. It's really just a simple matter of adding more cork in the middle of the mechanism which I have temporarily fixed with a small folded piece of paper. After I break it in over the next several weeks I'll take it back to get that cork added and have any other adjustments taken care of as well.

    4. Altissimo. Not as vocal and easy to tap into as my old Mark VI tenor and SX90R. It probably has something to do with the bore size. But definitely acceptable.

    5. Case. The case is perfect. I love the storage and latches.

    6. The mouthpiece. I opted for Phil's Soundmaster mouthpiece. Honestly I cannot imagine a more perfect piece for this horn. It blows my SR Technologies piece out of the water. And I love my SR Tech piece...just not on this horn.

    7. And my tech's response. Solid horn with a huge bottom end. He'd be excited to offer a horn of this quality and price point for sale in his shop. Coming from him I'm pretty impressed.

    I do believe that a competent tech is necessary to get the most out of it...if you have a Barone tenor or are contemplating one, please do yourself a favor and take it to a good tech for adjustment to lighten up the action (and also to check the tone holes so the pads seat perfectly).

    Bottom line. The Barone Classic Tenor is an absolute winner in my eyes. I am more than pleased and extremely impressed. At the price of about $1,800 plus $125 for the setup, I truly feel this is a steal. I can't imagine going back and paying 2x-4x more for another horn. On a cost adjusted basis this tenor blows away my old Mark VI. If I had to compare it to another horn I owned then I'd say it's a tighter, faster and stouter version of my Keilwerth SX90R.

    That said, I really appreciate all of you who have given your reviews of the Barone tenor here on SOTW...I ended up with an amazing instrument.

    JC

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    Default Re: My Barone Classic Tenor will be here in a week

    Great review JCSWFL. Thanks for taking the time to post. It sounds like you've got a great tech who put things in top knick for you. These Barones DO have a huge bottom end don't they? And Phil includes one of his fabulous
    mouthpieces! Can hardly wait for my Vintage 8* to arrive.

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    Default Re: My Barone Classic Tenor will be here in a week

    Great review! Phil's horns really do have something special going on. By the way even my main gigging horn, a Yamaha 82Z, is great because I use a Barone neck! The Barone neck kills both the G1 and V1 Yamaha necks I have.

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    Default Re: My Barone Classic Tenor will be here in a week

    I'm coming up on my 1 year anniversary with my Barone Classic Tenor in satin gold finish. Overall the horn has been great. Action is holding up fine and it plays better now than a year ago. The only issue I've seen is the finish. It has developed black spots inside and around the bell as well as some green bleed through on some of the engraving. The finish issue does not bother me but thought I'd post it up to let everyone know.

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    Default Re: My Barone Classic Tenor will be here in a week

    Quote Originally Posted by JCSWFL View Post
    My only negative so far is the octave key needs adjustment after playing it for a few days so the middle D/E isn't stuffy. It's really just a simple matter of adding more cork in the middle of the mechanism which I have temporarily fixed with a small folded piece of paper.
    Can you give a more detailed explanation of this? Which cork? Are you trying to increase or decrease the venting?

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    Default Re: My Barone Classic Tenor will be here in a week

    Quote Originally Posted by JCSWFL View Post
    I'm coming up on my 1 year anniversary with my Barone Classic Tenor in satin gold finish. Overall the horn has been great. Action is holding up fine and it plays better now than a year ago. The only issue I've seen is the finish. It has developed black spots inside and around the bell as well as some green bleed through on some of the engraving. The finish issue does not bother me but thought I'd post it up to let everyone know.
    Don't know about the black spots but the verdigris isn't unusual especially for a horn living in a humid coastal environment. With the satin finish I don't know if the horn gets a coat of clear lacquer as well or not. My Classic tenor is gold plate with clear lacquer over the top and the finish still looks great with the only wear showing at the touch points.

    Very hard to complain about these Barone horns especially when you consider the price. Tenors occasionally come up here in the marketplace section or on ebay lightly used for around $1k. If I didn't already have 4 tenors I'd be tempted to pick up another.

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    Default Re: My Barone Classic Tenor will be here in a week

    As far as the cork, it's the cork just north of the octave key. It was venting too much. And my folded paper orange post-it note fix is still in place...I haven't taken it back to my tech yet. Hey, at least it's not duct tape (yet)! It's probably time for an adjustment anyway so I'll have my tech take care of it.

    I don't think there is lacquer on it. If there is, it's matte. But I don't think so, and that would explain the discoloration. I let Phil Barone know about the finish in an email yesterday...maybe he can figure out a fix for this on new horns.

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    Default Re: My Barone Classic Tenor will be here in a week

    Just got it back from the tech last week. It's playing in tip top shape again. So happy with this purchase!

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    Default Re: My Barone Classic Tenor will be here in a week

    I need to dig my Classic out of the closet and get it to my tech. It needs another adjustment before it's ready to gig with but I do love the fat sound. It's seen about a total of 6 months of gigging on and off over the past few years but the satin lacquer has not aged too well but it does give it a more vintage look. Once I dig it out I'll take pictures of how this finish does sitting in a case for the past 2+ years.

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