I play a The Martin alto with a Meyer 7M. I realized recently that this piece is too open for me -- the low register tends to play flat or subtone. I switched to a softer reed (Rigotto medium soft), which helps to some extent but doesn't totally solve the problem, and anyway I prefer a medium to medium-hard reed. So I'm shopping for a mouthpiece. Since the Meyer is the only alto piece I've played at all extensively, I'm planning to order a bunch of mouthpieces, say half a dozen, from a store with a good return policy and keep the one I like best. Mouthpiece gurus of SOTW, please share some ideas for what to try!
For what it's worth, the sound I'm after is a classic bebop tone -- think Cannonball or Lou Donaldson. In terms of tip opening: I tried my teacher's Mouthpiece Cafe NYC piece, which is a 5 with an opening of .072" (compared to my Meyer's .081" or so), and that played very easily. I could probably go a little more open, so I'm thinking anything in the .072"-.076" range or so could work. (I liked the Mouthpiece Cafe and it's one of the pieces I'm considering, but I figure it can't hurt to try out some others.) Price wise I'm hoping to stay around $200 or so (so no vintage Florida Link for me, sadly).
What are some obvious choices to try? And what's a good online store to try them from? WWBW and Weiner Music both seem to have good selections and a trial/return policy -- where else?