?What Are The Differences In Vandoren Clarinet Mouthpieces and Which One Is Right For You?

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What Are The Differences In Vandoren Clarinet Mouthpieces

and Which One Is Right For You?

In your search for a “better” clarinet mouthpiece someone has recommended a Vandoren mouthpiece to you. Undoubtedly they recommended a specific model such as the B45, 5RV, M13, etc. Unfortunately while doing your research you discovered that there are multiple versions of that mouthpiece. In fact, Vandoren offers over 40 different mouthpiece for the Bb Soprano Clarinet. Understanding all the differences makes choosing the right one for you a simple decision.

The Base Models

The first step in understanding the differences in all the various Vandoren models is to realize there are basically 9 different mouthpieces. They are called :

Each model is slightly different from the others in various ways to give clarinet players a choice in sound color, response, articulation, etc.

The following descriptions are taken directly from Vandoren to explain the basic differences in each model.

B45 - The universal mouthpiece. With an intermediate tip opening and a medium-long facing, it is appreciated by most clarinetists.

B40 - Same facing as the B45 with a wider tip rail, it produces a compact and centered sound.

B46 - The mouthpiece best suited to musicians playing both clarinet and saxophone.

5RV - The time-proven standard for professional musicians. Quality and tradition.

M13 - Rich, colorful sound. Very precise response. Meets every demand.

M15 - Great articulation ease. Offers musicians a colorful spectrum of sound.

M30 - Its facing length gives it great flexibility, a good balance between timbre and roundness.

5JB – THE Jazz mouthpiece

7JB - Mouthpiece for jazz and traditional music. Powerful and flexible sound

Variations of the Base Models

Lyre Models

Many of the base models mentioned above are available in the Lyre Model Variation, such as the B45 is offered as the B45 Lyre. The Lyre models are the exact same mouthpiece with one change; the facing is longer creating a more open tip opening. If you are not familiar with the differences in facing lengths and tip openings, the simplest explanation is the Lyre Models allow you to use softer reeds and still achieve the same quality of sound you would using a stiffer reed on the standard model.

The following mouthpieces are available in the Lyre Series

Profile 88 Models

The profile 88 series is identical to the original model except the beak, or the part of the mouthpiece on which your top teeth rests is shaped differently as shown in the photo.

The Profile 88 beak, has a longer slope, giving more options as far as playing position, air flow, etc, to the player. Many players prefer this beak, while others prefer the traditional beak. Overall this is simple a matter of personal preference.

The Profile 88 series is available in the following models:

The 13 Series

The final variation in Vandoren Clarinet Mouthpieces is the 13 Series. A 13 Series Mouthpiece is identical to the Profile 88 version of the mouthpiece with one added difference; it is designed to play at a=440 for American clarinetists. While this series was originally designed specifically for Buffet R13 clarinets, these mouthpieces were perfectly on any clarinet.

The following models are offered in the13 Series:

Choosing the right Vandoren clarinet mouthpiece for you will take some research. You should check with your teacher and other clarinet players for recommendations and to possibly try out some of these mouthpieces. For even more information be sure to visit Vandoren's Website.

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