BMS is proud to stock a selection of repair technician Gabriel Vatavu’s hand crafted mouthpieces! Here’s a message from Gabe about these:
Although it is hard to say how much the mouthpiece-reed-ligature assembly is responsible for the timbre and sound quality you produce on your clarinet or sax, let’s just say that the general opinion amongst mouthpiece specialists is that the mouthpiece assembly is responsible for about 70%-80% of your sound.
You can have the greatest instrument, played with a poor mouthpiece will produce a poor sound. Also the reverse is true, have a poor instrument with a great mouthpiece and I guarantee it will make a much more desirable set up. I’ve seen and heard many sax players sounding great on cheaper Saxes, but having a good mouthpiece. It is a great solution if you are on a budget. Of course ideally would be to have a great mouthpiece and a great horn.
The mouthpieces produced by the big manufacturers are mostly of decent quality, but when you compare that with a meticulously hand finished mouthpiece, the quality difference is obvious. I spend anywhere between 4-6 hours on refacing and perfecting a mouthpiece and I doubt that for the big manufacturers that would be viable. Allow me please to illustrate the situation better; it is a bit like buying a car. Out of the factory it is good, serves the purpose but if you want to turn it in to a high performance car, you would have to improve on many things (wheels, exhaust, turbo….etc) It works the same with mouthpieces.