The best alto sax reed is quite small, even though it is seen as one of the most significant pieces of your saxophone—particularly from the standpoint of tone and sound. Truly, if you want to be so bold, it could even be rated as THE most significant piece. A few of the most common brands, like Vandoren, and Legere are on our guide today.
To improve the sound and help you add some notes while playing a certain genre, the saxophone reed might look small—but it is mighty powerful. The alto saxophone reeds could take your music over the top. If you are searching for the reeds most suited for your instrument, then you are in a good place.
Best Alto Sax Reeds Reviewed: Our Top Picks
Sometimes you want to purchase a top-notch alto saxophone reed without doing too much investigation. You want something that continually works. These are a go-to for various people.
Vandoren has been manufacturing reeds since 1905; thus, they know exactly what they are doing! These specific ones are among the most popular reeds in the world since they are so versatile.
From its sheer amount, you could rest assured that you will have substitutes for a long time, with 10 reeds wrapped in a flow pack. These reeds are not simply made with high-quality wood; however, they also feature a thicker heel and a more flexible palette to help generate more vibration. It will set your sound apart from other saxophones instruments and would also help you reach that tone and notes you want. It is ideal as jazz reeds
To help you reach that rich deep, sound with the reed’s body, the thicker tip’s sound is the worthy thing about it. That specific, detailed feature aids the tip to last longer. It means you can play more without having to substitute and pay more.
Accessible in strengths 2.5-4, this covers a series of strengths to help fit your device and music. The reeds in the Vandoren SR613 are wrapped to seclusion in their “Flow Pack,” which helps confirm freshness with every open. With a 25-year history, the Vandoren brand has taken its accomplishment from its clarinet and moved it to the saxophone.
- Accurate and soft attack
- Homogeneous timber in every register
- Precise high notes,
- Warm and velvety sound
- Much deeper and richer huge sound from your sax
- This thicker tip would also mean that your reed will last longer
- It might be a bit of a longer palette
These reeds are so good because D’addario, who currently possesses Rico, is very precise about making them. The brand wants you to purchase a box of ten and know that all of them will be good.
It used to be pretty hard to discover good reeds, and in a box, there would be a couple that would be truly good. That is what they have tried to fix, and we must say they have done it!
They make certain to build the reed in perfect situations in France. Everything is done by hand.
The D’Addario Rico is also available in two diverse models, from filed to unfiled. What sets this brand and style of saxophone apart is that it is well-defined, with a lengthier vamp and a structured heart. It gives off a clear, heavier tone and exceptional projection. This clearer sound makes it flawlessly fit for jazz. The D’Addario Rico also boasts flexibility and a lightning-fast reply, which is great for the jazz notes.
These reeds cost about $2 per reed if you purchase a box of ten, and they are worth it! The Rico reeds are accessible in strengths 1.5 to 4.0.
These reads are great for novices and medium players, along with advanced players who want to mix their costly reeds with something more reasonable once in a while.
- Perfect reeds for the beginner, intermediate, and expert saxophone player
- It will provide you with a much bigger and fatter sound
- It is a great reed for jazz playing
- The structure of these reeds means that they will be capable of lasting a lot longer
- It is not adaptable to definite styles of music
Cecilio is a renowned brand that makes a little bit of everything musical (percussion, string instruments, brass mouthpieces, etc.) And, these reeds are worth examining because they are quite low-priced, with a decent general reputation.
There is one cause to try Cecilio reeds— price. Their alto sax reeds are not recognized for tone or quality control, and they offer one of the least ranges of reeds strength. However, these reeds are half the rate of the other reeds on this list, and reviews agree that for the price, you might do much worse. If you are unsure whether you will stick with alto sax or an absolute novice, these might be a good starting point. But you’ll perhaps want to move to something better before long.
These are great if you need reeds for yourself (or your students) and do not want to spend much money. These reeds are usually a few dollars less costly than the Rico reeds by D’Addario, and in place of getting 10 reeds, you get 20!
- Low-priced – great for most beginners
- Each reed has its case – great for students without a reed case
- Reliability is very good for the price
- A very limited variety of hardnesses available
Glory permits you to select the finest saxophone reeds from three diverse sizes. So, choose which one would be better for your performance. Just do remember that all the reeds inside a box will have a similar thickness. Thus, you will not receive reeds of diverse thicknesses in one single box.
If you want to be playing with reeds of numerous thicknesses, you will have to purchase separate boxes. However, since they are made out of cane, they are rather soft and susceptible to alteration because of humidity and temperature; having more reeds would truly be practical.
Glory Reeds is a popular name amongst serious clarinet players, and for a good cause. The Glory Reed name is related to top quality, affordability in addition to lasting value
The Glory Reeds is a great choice if you have been looking for a great reed to support your advanced play. Designed with great care and made to last, this can reed is the perfect choice for the advanced player.
- 5″ size offers coziness and flexibility
- Excellent tonal reproduction across all registers
- Top-quality design
- Sturdy finish
- Quality issue
Légère nowadays offers Signature Series technology for alto sax. These reeds follow the remarkable achievement of Légère’s Signature Series reeds, which have been hailed as a breakthrough in synthetic reeds. Signature Series are very playable reeds with a response closely identically to cane reeds. They are very well-balanced, natural-sounding, and very consistent. Signature Series alto sax reeds would not warp and are accessible in strengths 2 – 3.5.
Légère reeds are finished from polypropylene, which the FDA approves for use in direct food contact applications; thus, their reeds are safe to use.
They process their polymer in a special means that lines up the molecules themselves to exactly match the rigidity and density of moist cane. Légère does not add glass fibers or any chemicals.
A bright and steady reed colored with a complete spectrum of overtones. The cane reeds are very receptive and articulate.
The Signature Series for Saxophone is the commended cut for players in solo, classical, or jazz studio settings.
Several players who play Légère tend to prefer the Signature Series reeds, which produce a warm and brighter tone across all registers. The Signature Series reeds are prepared from a firmer material and are cut thinner than the Classic reeds. “These qualities make the Signature Series reeds more flexible crossways the tip, resulting in a full range of overtones and an attractive sound with negligible effort.” Irrespective of which cut you select, you will always obtain the same Légère quality and the sturdiness that Légère has come to be recognized for. All Légère reeds are presented in ¼ strengths and are accessible for alto, tenor sax, tenor soprano, and baritone saxophone.
- It does not have to be pre-conditioned before playing
- It does not absorb water
- It is entirely non-toxic
- It can be sanitized
- It is extremely hard, and it would last a long, long time
- The longevity of these reeds will all depend on the reeds strength of the saxophone
Hemke cane Reeds are designed to produce a dark tone that is faultless for professional classic and select jazz saxophonists. The usual round chambered mouthpieces are the finest match for this reed.
Hemke Alto Sax Reeds provides an attractive dark tone for this reed’s shorter vamp, which is appropriate for jazz and classical music.
If you like to play this type of melody, or you are a professional classical or jazz saxophonist. This reed would be your perfect match.
The tip of the reed is somewhat thinner than the other reed in the market. For this reason, these cane reeds give you a quick response every time to provide ultimate performance. Moreover, the thin tip is well-balanced. Consequently, it makes the articulation makes it very easy as well as comfortable.
First-class premium grade cane is given field cut to upsurge the deepness of the harmonics. For this cause, you get outstanding flexibility the reliable response from the reed every time. Furthermore, in the low register, it provides the tone with outstanding clarity.
Classical or traditional jazz music lover? Play your saxophone along with this music with a dark tone which is required? Make it comfy and easy with Hemke Alto Sax Reeds.
- Comes at a budgeted price
- Balanced and low tone
- Traditional mouthpiece
- Great for beginner
- Only has 5 reeds in a box
D’Addario is a well-known brand, particularly when it comes to providing reeds that are durable at prices that are within reasonable ranges. This one is a fantastic option for musicians who are interested in achieving jazzy tones as well as classical tunes.
The D’Addario Royal, originally known as Rico Royal, has what is known as a French cut, which is a vertical strip of bark that is scraped from directly below the neck of the reed. The French cut provides the Royals with a crisp tone and responsiveness that is enhanced. They are very similar to the original Rico brand, but of a far superior quality.
D’Addario is responsible for the design and construction of the manufacturing apparatus that is used in the patented reed-making technique. Each reed is guaranteed to contain only the highest quality machined blank thanks to the cutting, sanding, and quality control technology that is incorporated into the manufacturing process.
We have to acknowledge that one of the factors that makes this brand and product so tempting is the fact that the reeds can be purchased in three different pack sizes: the usual pack of ten, the pack of twenty-five, and the pack of three. In addition, the strengths range from 1.0 to 5.0 with increments of 0.5, making it possible for players of varying experience levels to locate something that complements their preferred method of playing.
It may not have the most fluid sound compared to the other available alternatives, but it is simple to play because it does not involve the usage of as much air as the other options do. Because of this, many people who are just starting out prefer it.
The modern Royal reed has achieved a level of uniformity that has never been seen before thanks to the cutting-edge machinery and meticulous manufacturing procedure utilized by D’Addario. Those who are looking for the purest tone can benefit from the field feature’s increased clarity of sound. These reeds have a high degree of responsiveness, making them ideal for musicians that prioritize simplicity of sound production.
And the fact that they are filed, also known as French cut, means that they will match wonderfully with smaller saxophones; this is one of the reasons why they are considered to be one of the greatest alto sax reeds now available.
- Amazing build quality
- Made especially for beginners
- Available in convenient bundles
- Suitable for both jazzy and classical tunes
- Comfortable to play
- Versatile to complement all playing styles
- Clear tone produced by the French cut
- There may be issues with durability
Alto Sax Reed Buying Guide
Using the right reeds is just as significant as having the right saxophone and mouthpiece. Many folks think that they might just as well purchase the cheapest reeds available; however, that would be a mistake.
It might appear like it is just a piece of cane; there is much more science to it than that. If you want a superior saxophone reed, you would know a few things before you go shopping.
Think about products generally. If there are two similar things and one is much more inexpensive than the other, what decision would you draw? We would assume that the quality is poorer.
It could depend on various things, but most of them have to do with the manufacturing process. Maybe the company has tried to save some money by recruiting staff far from professionals, using cheap materials, or rushing stuff to produce as much as possible.
These are all probable explanations for why some reeds are not as good as others. The procedure of making good reeds is rather advanced! Just growing cane the right way appears to take lots of knowledge and patience.
Generally, most reeds nowadays are made of cane. While it looks like wood, the cane is truly a particular kind of grass. Since it is a natural, organic material, however, this means that not all reeds will respond or sound the same. Moreover, cane reeds would wear out over time and will need to be substituted regularly. Reeds aren’t costly individually, but the cost of substituting a reed or few every couple of weeks could add up.
There are quite a few diverse brands of reeds. Still, you are generally better off keeping inside a single (well-respected) brand as well as style than bouncing around. Each brand does things somewhat differently (different cut, diverse thickness ratings). So once you discover a brand that feels good and works fine with your mouthpiece, it is a good idea to stick with them!
Before you purchase reeds, you need to know what strength to purchase. Most novices benefit from purchasing the reed strength 2 or 2.5. The reeds might be soft, medium, and hard.
Many folks believe that the reed’s strength has to do with the thickness of the reed, though this is not the case. It is, actually, a measure of resistance. It is the rigidity of the cane that decides the resistance of cane reeds.
This means that the greater the reed’s strength, the firmer cane. For this cause, novices who aren’t used to playing and still need to build up their muscles and breathing must get a reed with a low number, while a player of skill level high could go higher.
if you consider the functionality of a Flavored Saxophone Reeds before buying it, It would be a great help. The functionality of any Flavored Saxophone Reeds typically depends on the specifications it contains. The more refined the specs are, the higher the functionality.
Old Customer Reviews
Most clients leave feedback about their experience with the diverse Flavored Saxophone Reeds they bought from Amazon. The reviews are continually displayed on a similar page wherever the product is situated. Looking at such reviews will aid you to know whether the Flavored Saxophone Reeds you want to purchase are good or bad.
Filed vs. Unfiled Reeds
Another feature to consider while buying a reed for your kid is the cut- filed or unfiled. A filed reed or traditional French filed cut reed, occasionally referred to as a double-cut, has a thin layer of bark eliminated below the vamp area, permitting the bark to make a straight line. This extra cut allows the reed to vibrate more freely, creating a brighter sound with a better response. As unfiled reeds, or single cut reeds, do not have the additional cut, they build a “U” shape in part below the vamp. This cut produces a darker tone or darker sound with more resistance, as the reed is not as free to vibrate. Eventually, your child should play both filed and unfiled reeds till they find the cut that works finest with their mouthpiece and playing style.
Buy in Bulk
When it comes to buying the saxophone reeds, it’s better to purchase in bulk- that way, you will not have to make emergency trips to the local music store when your child needs a new reed.
A whole box of ten saxophone reeds would last a few weeks, but you can always purchase extra boxes for your kid just in case. Once your kid opens the box, inspect each reed individually and throw out any noticeable cracks or damage. In maximum cases, 3-4 reeds will be wasted from each box often. Along with visible splits or cracks, pay attention to uneven grain, knots, or discoloration. Throw the duds out and inspire your child to keep at least three reeds to play with at all times.
Once you have tried out several different reeds, you will get a lot better at picking out the best reeds!
Are La Voz reeds good?
Ans: Versatile and reasonable, Rico produces the most popular reeds in the world.
Are synthetic reeds better?
Ans: Since synthetic reeds are manufactured with strength in mind, they will not get warped or dry out while not playing your saxophone instrument or clarinet.
Are Vandoren reeds better than Rico?
Ans: In general, Vandoren reeds are more robust. While Rico reeds typically play well out of the box, they do not last as long.
Does the alto sax reed quality depend on the brand?
Ans: Of course, purchasing a brand name means choosing a product’s reputation rather than just the product itself. However, the reed gets its reputation brand by the manufacturing procedure—and creating high-quality material at the end of the day.
How do you choose an alto sax reed?
Ans: The usual range for reeds is 2 to 5
How long do alto saxophone reeds last?
Ans: Reeds that you are actively using will probably last anywhere from 1-4 weeks, provided you are frequently playing and taking good care of the reed.
What are jazz reeds?
Ans: Jazz reeds are designed to deliver players with more edge and projection.
What are the best sax reeds?
Ans: Vandoren SR613 Alto Sax Reeds.
What do the saxophone reed numbers mean?
Ans: Reed thickness is most frequently expressed as a number
What is D’Addario Jazz Select?
Ans: With a thick spine and a longer vamp, these aim to help the player to produce a fatter sound with superior projection and flexibility, making them perfect for jazz.
What is the difference between RICO and RICO Royal reeds?
Ans: The classic and universal “orange box” reeds are the ones more students start on than any other, whereas the Rico-Royal reeds accommodate students who are a bit advanced
What reeds do professional saxophone players use?
Ans: Professional musicians typically play anywhere between strengths 3 &5
What size clarinet reeds should I use for clarinet?
Will the reeds from other saxophone kinds fit my alto sax?
Ans: If you are playing an alto saxophone instrument, you will need the reed specifically designed for that saxophone instrument.