What is the Best Clarinet or Saxophone Mouthpiece for me?

Did you know that your mouthpiece can transform your instrument

Many of us have been playing on the mouthpieces that our clarinet or saxophone came with for a long time, probably without questioning it. But if you are still playing on your stock or beginner mouthpiece, it may be time to upgrade your mouthpiece.

There are so many options out there for upgrading clarinet and saxophone mouthpieces and it can be difficult to choose one. This post is here to help!


The Difference Between Mouthpieces

So what’s the difference after all between a mouthpiece that will set you back $20 and one that will cost you $150?

The Vandoren website shares helpful diagrams for looking at the structure of a woodwind mouthpiece. 

The different parts of the mouthpiece, such as the side and tip rails (the thin edges surrounding where the reed goes) and the baffle (the horizontal space where the reed goes) can all change in size, dimension, and style depending on the mouthpiece you choose. This, in turn, affects the sound produced by the instrument.

Saxophone mouthpieces are often made with different materials, such as metal or rubber. Players will prefer a certain material depending on the style of music they play. 

Why Step up Your Mouthpiece?

A step-up  mouthpiece can be a great way to upgrade your instrument without purchasing a step-up instrument. A student who has been playing on a stock mouthpiece can greatly benefit from picking out a new mouthpiece after a few years of playing. Since the mouthpiece is the part of the instrument that has direct contact with your embouchure (mouth position) and air supply, it has great potential to transform your sound. Upgrading the mouthpiece can also be a great way to customize the instrument for different playing needs, as the mouthpiece can be switched out fairly easily. 

Which Mouthpiece is Best?

No one mouthpiece is best, but there is one that is right for you

Trying out mouthpieces can be a great way to see which one works for you. When trying out mouthpieces, be sure to use the  reed, ligature, and instrument you normally play on. That way you’re only changing one variable at a time.

At David French, you can always try out any of the mouthpieces we have in stock. We know how important it is for you to have the mouthpiece that best suits your playing abilities and style. No matter your age or stage as a musician, a new mouthpiece can be an important investment in playing, so don’t be afraid to experiment and try out a new mouthpiece!