View Full Version : Meinl Weston 46S

03-26-2006, 04:30 PM
[/URL]Review by: tBa

Horn Review: To start off, this is the biggest f-tuba you'll probably ever find. It's a 6/4, and it's commonly confused to be a BBb tuba. With its 6 valves, it looks more like an accordion than a tuba.

I got mine several years ago. It's a sencond-hand, but in reasonable condition (well, at least it was) so for its price it was a good buy. In my instrument, the fourth valve is moved to be operated by a left hand index finger -which makes life so much easier.

Good sides, then? It's big and made of heavy sheet metal, so the sound is resonant, rich and big enough to match even some larger ensembles. It's easy to get different colours into your sound. The dynamical scale is vast- from whispering pianissimos into thundering fff's -this horn matches this all if you know how to command her. If you don't -well, she'll end up sounding drunken bass trombonist.

The 6 rotary valves are consistent, silent and smooth. Stroke is short, and playing any technique will be a pleasure finger-wise. The construction of valves being divided into 3-3 took some time to familiarise with first, but it payed off big time. The extremely low register sparkles with sonority. It's really a pleasure to play low with her...

Any bad sides? You bet. Being a Melton, this horn produces a huge resistance. I like it, because i reckon resistance equals control, but if you don't agree with me, I don't blame you. The biggest con side is pitch stability. Between the base C# (the one under the staff) and F# below it, it's all way out of tune. Not to mention intonation problems of those notes. This can be compensated somewhat with different fingerings, but this'll slow you down in technique. And doesn't help at all, with the intonation, quite the opposite actually.

Upper register is well in tune, but due to the size of her, it's somewhat of a heavy to play in high register above the staff, but hey, you'll have to compromise. And a decent mouthpiece will ease off this pain somewhat. Is use Conn Helleberg 7B, which fits this instrument superbly.

[url="http://www.brassreview.com/reviews/showproduct.php?product=2221"]Link to the Review (http://www.brassreview.com/reviews/showproduct.php?product=1154)