I am considering buying a new Buffet R13 clarinet. My instructor has tried out 5 for me at the store. On all of them he says he has to lip down considerably on the upper D (or maybe D flat) to make it play in tune. Hence he feels the instruments would not be a good buy for me. Is this a general problem with this instrument or have we been unlucky enough to look at 5 bad ones?
Thank you for your inquiry concerning trying many clarinets, I would tend to agree with your teacher. In general, these are very expensive instruments and at the price, or even if it were half the price, I would still concur with your teacher. The instruments would not be a good buy for you. Your experiences in trying Buffet Clarinets is about “par for the course.”
Any high end Leblanc, Yamaha or Selmer will be both less money and much better intune, and I would suggest you try those instruments as they are both satisfactory, or even exemplary. The quality control on these instruments concerning tuning is very high.
I myself, am currently playing a clarinet made and designed by Tom Ridenour who was the designer of the Opus and the Concerto Clarinet of Leblanc, widely acknowledged to be the best clarinets made and marketed in the US.
The instrument that I’m playing is completely different than any of those listed above. It is an instrument made of hard rubber, an instrument that I have found has a superior sound and more than that, is the most intune clarinet available and at the most reasonable price.
Here is the address of his website. You will find all of the particulars there.
Good luck, play and stay well,