Gemeinhardt or Yamaha?

Flute History and Instrument Purchase

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jkathyt
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Gemeinhardt or Yamaha?

Post by jkathyt »

I'm a beginning flute player and I don't know which flute is better.

Are Gemeinhardts better or are the Yamaha?

Also, taking the price difference into hand, is the Gemeinhardt 2SP better or should I go with the Yamaha YFL-261 (or some other Yamaha model)?

Thanks in advance!

Kendall
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Post by Kendall »

Gemeinhardt 2sp stands for Silver Piccolo

So that is a piccolo, but I'm not sure of the difference between the two brands
Kendall

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powayflute01
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Post by powayflute01 »

Actually, if I may correct Kendall...according to Gemeinhardt's website http://www.gemeinhardt.com, the 2sp is indeed a student model flute (I'm not sure if sp stands for silver plated or student plateau or something entirely different, but anyway...)

I believe there was quite an extensive thread on this subject a while back. In my personal opinion, you should get a Yamaha. I think that they are built much better than the Gemeinhardts and many of the student Gemeinhardts have headjoints that sound unfocused and airy. Yamaha body structure is also better--I think the Yamaha will hold up longer and is a better flute in general.
However, there are many people on this board who are Gemeinhardt users and will disagree with me completely, so take my advice for what you will.

Happy playing!
Last edited by powayflute01 on Sat Nov 27, 2004 2:19 am, edited 1 time in total.
Haha, this one is my favorite: :shock:
[size=75]I <3 LXA[/size]

Kendall
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Post by Kendall »

Oh wow, mabye I was thinking of another company. Sorry
Kendall

MeLizzard
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Post by MeLizzard »

Yep, I think I'd go with the Yamaha; you'll end up getting better 'mileage' than with the Gemeinhardt. I began playing, in the dark ages of the 1970s, an Artley (no longer making flutes), then moved to two intermediate Gemeinhardts--I played one until it literally fell apart! :shock: (1980s), and have settled, as an adult, into a nifty Muramatsu. I still have these Gemeinhardts, which I ocassionally loan to students whose horns are in the shop. They are quite different from the flutes the company is producing at this time. There have been significant, detrimental changes to the Gemeinhardt design. The new ones can't meet the standard of the older ones--their reputation was built several years ago, and I think they've been coasting lately. The newer Gemeinhardt scale is not so great, the tone's a little shallow, and the students who come to lessons with these eventually grow pretty frustrated. Mechanism's a bit sluggish, too. They also seem to have more mechanical issues of late and log more repair shop hours than the Yamahas. Armstrong is also a reliable student brand (the 104 is the standard beginner flute), and many of my students have chosen this brand (less $$$ than Yamaha). I know Yamaha raised their prices :cry: on student instruments (all of them) this fall. The Armstrong scale is pretty good, and the girls who are currently playing them seem to be able to produce good tone with these. The intermediate line is ok, too. Said players consistently get positive comments at festivals and contests. :D Mechanically, they've proven reliable also. As for Gemeinhardt numbers, 2=plateau, 3=open-hole, 4=piccolo, sp=silver-plate, s=silver, etc. Have fun shopping! :lol:

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powayflute01
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Post by powayflute01 »

Yeah, I played on an Armstrong when I first started out...I can't say too much about it because I don't remember it very well, but imho there's something to be said for a flute that can hold up through a year of sixth grade band. Even if you can get a used yamaha flute, I would definitely do it.
Haha, this one is my favorite: :shock:
[size=75]I <3 LXA[/size]

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pandagirl11
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Post by pandagirl11 »

Hmm...Gemeinhardt's tend to be less pricey up here in Canada so that was the one I chose to go with (2SP). However, my flute teacher recommended a Yamaha flute 'cause she thought they were just better flutes in general. At this stage though, (as a beginner) it doesn't really matter what kind of flute you get 'cause sooner or later, you'll have to upgrade to an intermediate flute anyways. Then, at that point, you can try out Yamaha again or even Gemeinhardt although it's not very widely recommended at this stage or even Trevor James, which I'm dying to try out. Anybody know anything about Trevor James flutes? Like, from firsthand experience?

biggzh
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Post by biggzh »

I'm one of those geeks who has memorized the Gemeindhart naming system...

2=beginner flute (closed holes/plateau holes)
3=french keyed flute
4=piccolo

SP=silver plated
S=solid silver
SH=solid silver head
B=B-foot

W=wooden
P=plastic

etc.

lhampton
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Post by lhampton »

even though I own a gemeinhardt, I would say yamaha. I don't know, but after playing on a yamaha, it just feels like the tone is less stuffy or more crisp, I should say. however, it is all about personal preference...gemeinhardt used to have top of the line beginner and intermediate flutes, but from personal experience, I would say go with the yamaha.

amhso
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Post by amhso »

i'd recommend yamaha, tried many gemeinhardt's, tone gets a lil airy and sounds like a bit of spit sometimes too (might just be me). Yamaha gives a deeper sound to me.

C.T.
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Post by C.T. »

It is really up to you and only you know how you sound on each brand of flute. From personal experience I own both a Yamaha and a Gemeinhardt. I ususally alternate between both whenever I feel like it. To me the Gemeinhardt seems easier to tune and I have to pull out my headjoint on my Yamaha quite a bit yto get it in tune but that might just be the either me or the flute. I have noticed that Yamahas have a more smoother and quiter mechanism than the Gemeinhardt and it seems that they have a darker sound in the lower register. On the other hand, my Gemeinhardt can play the upper octaves a lot better than my Yamaha, even though I paid more for the Yamaha. Plus with my Gemeinhardt I can play the F that is two octaves higher than the one in the staff with more ease and perfectly in tune. But in the end as I stated in the begining the choice is up to you and I hope this helps.

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Phineas
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Post by Phineas »

I hate threads like this one.

Just play on it, or have someone you trust play on it. The brand does not matter. I got a house full of cheap instruments that play great. I have a few top of the line instruments that don't play so great. I have owned both brands, and I have a Jinyin I just bought that sounds and plays better than both of them for half the price.

Learn how to play and get the most out of what ever instrument you can get your hands on, then look. You will find the better you get as a player , the more your tastes in instruments will change.

Phineas

JazzySax
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Post by JazzySax »

Hello ,I have little to add to this post other than my two flutes worth. Phineas , be nice , hate is such a strong word . One opinion is good ,two opinions better,three or more opinions even better yet. You are correct to some extent however more than one budding musician has thrown in the towel all because of inferior equipment. I do confess that My Jin Yin Soprano Sax is nice but when I need better tone I open the Selmer Soprano Case. A good example would be Bundy versus Haynes. Even in the hands of a novice player the Haynes sound given their quality cannot help but to be more pleasing. This in turn is a sweet reward to a budding musician's and may just be the ticket to hold their interest. Im a firm believer in buying the best your budget allows but also doing your homework first which is just what this flautist is doing by seeking opinons here and I feel this to be the sign of a wise individual .
Whewwwww that was certainly a mouthful and with that said I offer the following to the original writer of this post. If you really want to make your choice wisely find a way to try out the flutes your asking about . It would seem that these are flutes which most music stores should have and if they don't ,shame on them for such a low inventory.I can understand not having high end flutes but what you are seeking they should have,call around. Their is also the National Flute Convention if your schedule permits travel .Im told that most of the manufacturers bring out their wares for show and tell at this convention.You may perhaps find another brand all togather . Good luck and best of wishes on your search.
Music is the essence of life composed.

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Phineas
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Post by Phineas »

Jazzy

I do not disagree with you. I have seen just as many people give up, or not get into music for finacial reasons. I have also seen people use their instrument(Or lack of a better one) as a cop-out! I am sure Charlie Parker would have liked nicer instruments, but that did not stop him from playing on the instruments he had. Rubberbands, and all.

Phineas

JazzySax
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Post by JazzySax »

I agree Phineas ,financial considerations are always a must. As for the rubberbands,knowing parker they improved his playing in some way. Steve Gooden down in New Orleans has soldiered some of the craziest gizmos onto the horns of some of the top sax players. Knowing Steve if he can find a way to improve a Sax with rubber bands he will do it and when its done your guranteed it will improve the playing in some way.
Parkers style and sound was a little to much for me but Coltrane is another story entirely. Though not everyone saw it ,that man had a brilliant musical mind not just in Sax but keyboards as well. His wife Juanita Coltrane just recently sent John's Sax's to the auction block at Guernsey's for some type of fund raiser. What a buy , I tried to register as a bidder on the day of the sale . Due to the approval time required though they could not register me in time. I had hope of getting a few pieces of the many sheet music up for auction written by John himself. As for your view on instruments though again I agree but also feel it important that no matter how the instrument looks that it be tuned and worked so that it plays . A good example is that I believe if financial restraints for tough choice in such a case a nice recorder is preferential to poor flute. Then again their is nothing wrong with a $50 flutes that plays in tune. Take Care
Music is the essence of life composed.

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