Need Help With Flute Purchase

Flute History and Instrument Purchase

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Quiet Storm
Posts: 3
Joined: Mon May 02, 2016 9:00 pm

Need Help With Flute Purchase

Post by Quiet Storm » Mon May 02, 2016 9:11 pm

Hi, and thanks to you in advance for any help you can offer.

I am now 50 years old and want to re-start playing the flute. Actually my primary instrument in high school and college (Big 10 Marching Band) was clarinet. But I taught myself the flute because I loved it, but I never owned one - only borrowed an extra from high school band room back in the 1980s. I never became anywhere near an expert or even intermediate, but I want to start again.

I have lots of music experience. Started organ lessons at age 5, played weddings/fashion shows by age 10. Started piano at age 12. Taught myself the basics of trumpet (for the 4 weeks my brother rented one for band when he was 10). But I really miss the flute.

My question is... and I have looked online for this answer and can't seem to find it.... will I be able to teach myself to play flute again - perhaps with a month or 2 of lessons - if I don't purchase a "beginner" flute model? After research I am fairly set on Yamaha, and if I were buying a beginner, closed hole model, I would get the 221, hands down. But I am certain I want to pursue this, so I would just as soon skip the beginner model and go for something higher level. Will I be able to teach myself on an intermediate or professional level flute, or do I really need to start with a "beginner" model?

Thank you for any help!

QS

Quiet Storm
Posts: 3
Joined: Mon May 02, 2016 9:00 pm

Re: Need Help With Flute Purchase

Post by Quiet Storm » Fri May 06, 2016 8:50 am

Thanks anyway.

SylvreKat
Posts: 224
Joined: Tue Mar 29, 2016 6:56 am
Location: KC metro

Re: Need Help With Flute Purchase

Post by SylvreKat » Fri May 06, 2016 9:06 pm

Sorry, I was a bit busy 'til now. Sometimes the real world can interfere with folks posting on the virtual world.

I'm not a music teacher, nor a pro, nor anything except an avid flutist. So I may not be the best one to answer. But I would say it really depends on the player. I have a friend who loaned her Gemi beginner (probably an M2) to her niece and bought an intermediate level flute. Hated it. As in HATED it. Even with the plugs in, she had troubles playing the notes. Couldn't get any sort of decent tone from it. Happy ending though, the niece went in to choir instead of band and she now has her old Gemi back.

Me, I switched from my Gemi to the Armstrong with very little troubles beyond the adjustment of cleaning up my finger posture. And have had zero troubles at all going to the semi-pro Yami.

My advice would be go to a shop and play some intermediate Yami's and see how you do on them. If you feel like you're really struggling (like, to the point of frustration), then def' back down to a beginner. If you feel that yes, you're having some troubles but nothing that seems too major, then you're probably good with the intermediate.

And remember, there's no reason you can't play a good quality beginner for a long time. Or a good intermediate. My Armstrong served me well for 25-some years. I'd still be performing on it if the Yami hadn't been such an insane too good to pass deal.

>'Kat
Flutes:1975 Gemeinhardt M2 in chrome nickel;1982 Armstrong 80;2006 Yamaha 584

Piccs:1978 Artley piece of crap 15 P;1982 Gemeinhardt 4S;1980s? Armstrong all wood (no model)

Bass:2006 Jupiter di Medici G0199
Treble:2009 Guo New Voice

+ many flute-cousins

lily6270
Posts: 2
Joined: Fri May 06, 2016 11:14 pm

Re: Need Help With Flute Purchase

Post by lily6270 » Sat May 07, 2016 12:16 am

I've been playing the flute for 8 yrs now and counting, so I would consider myself to be an intermediate flautist. What I have learned is that the flute itself does not necessarily define the quality of your flute, if that makes sense. I would say in your circumstances, you should invest in a good student flute (I have the Yamaha 221, and it's played well for the past 7 yrs that I've owned it, however I am looking to upgrade) and a good head joint. The head joint determines most of your tone quality. If you purchase a student flute and a sterling silver head joint (or you can go for a 100% silver head joint) it will help most definitely with your tone. You don't necessarily have to spend a lot of money on the flute itself, the head joint is a key part to playing with good tone (embouchure and aperture also affect your tone, but that can be corrected through practice).

Good luck!

Quiet Storm
Posts: 3
Joined: Mon May 02, 2016 9:00 pm

Re: Need Help With Flute Purchase

Post by Quiet Storm » Sat May 07, 2016 12:43 am

Thank you for your reply. Yes, I get that the real world is more important - my bad, I thought the forum was busier than it actually is, and hoped for a response before 4 days because I had an offer which I had to decide upon. (Didn't help that it took over a day for the post to appear in the first place).

I ended up purchasing a near mint Yamaha 581H for just under $1000. Great deal, and I do not think I will regret it.

Thanks so much. I don't like the post moderation here, and the forum doesn't seem all that busy, so I will find another forum focusing on this topic. I do really appreciate the reply.

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Flatfive
Posts: 21
Joined: Tue Mar 31, 2015 3:08 am
Location: West Yorkshire, UK

Re: Need Help With Flute Purchase

Post by Flatfive » Sat May 07, 2016 5:22 am

My view is to get what suits you know and don't try and second guess what will suit you down the line. It's a bit like buying clothes that are too small, thinking you can slim down into them... I gave up doing that years ago.
If you try out as many as you can and get the one you like, you probably won't go far wrong.
I set out to buy a Yamaha, but came home with Trevor James, which I liked much more. I tried an Altus which was nearly three times the price, but at the level I was at, it just didn't suit.
I 've had the TJ a year now and been practising a lot. It's possible that I may never need to upgrade, as I'm playing purely for enjoyment, but I'll see how I get on. I am sure, however, that I bought the right one at that time.
Steve J

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pied_piper
Posts: 1841
Joined: Sat Mar 31, 2007 1:31 pm
Location: Virginia

Re: Need Help With Flute Purchase

Post by pied_piper » Sat May 07, 2016 8:39 am

Quiet Storm wrote: Thanks so much. I don't like the post moderation here, and the forum doesn't seem all that busy, so I will find another forum focusing on this topic. I do really appreciate the reply.
The moderation is only in effect until you have made a few approved posts to confirm that you are not a spammer. In the past spam was a big problem, but the moderation is a temporary inconvenience to be sure the board remains free of spam. You should find that your posts are no longer moderated.

I think you will find that this is one of the busier flute forums. Traffic varies. Sometimes there are no posts for days and other times, we see dozens a day.

Facebook has several flute groups that are active. The difference here is that you can remain a bit anonymous if you choose to do so. And, searching for information is easier than on FaceBook. Each has a place and I participate both here and on FB.
"Never give a flute player a screwdriver."
--anonymous--

SylvreKat
Posts: 224
Joined: Tue Mar 29, 2016 6:56 am
Location: KC metro

Re: Need Help With Flute Purchase

Post by SylvreKat » Sat May 07, 2016 11:28 pm

Quiet Storm wrote:Thank you for your reply. Yes, I get that the real world is more important - my bad, I thought the forum was busier than it actually is, and hoped for a response before 4 days because I had an offer which I had to decide upon. (Didn't help that it took over a day for the post to appear in the first place).

I ended up purchasing a near mint Yamaha 581H for just under $1000. Great deal, and I do not think I will regret it.

Thanks so much. I don't like the post moderation here, and the forum doesn't seem all that busy, so I will find another forum focusing on this topic. I do really appreciate the reply.
If you're in need of a fast response, then I suggest next time mentioning you're in a bit of a time-crunch with your question.

As for your "new" Yami, I do hope you played it before buying it. Near-mint doesn't matter if your chops aren't ready at all for jumping into the deep-deep end of a semi-pro flute.

Please stick around here. I'm pretty new on the forum, but it seems like a nice and usually helpful place (although I'm still waiting on that OP to explain what a level 8 is :wink: ) Enjoy your Yami!

>'Kat
Flutes:1975 Gemeinhardt M2 in chrome nickel;1982 Armstrong 80;2006 Yamaha 584

Piccs:1978 Artley piece of crap 15 P;1982 Gemeinhardt 4S;1980s? Armstrong all wood (no model)

Bass:2006 Jupiter di Medici G0199
Treble:2009 Guo New Voice

+ many flute-cousins

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