Posted by Scott F. on April 25, 2002 at 21:51:25:
In Reply to: BE2052s or YEP-642s posted by Jeremy Ragan on April 25, 2002 at 17:39:06:
The valves are a little faster on the Prestige (compared with the 642), however the new YEP-842 has valves just as fast as the Prestige. A new Prestige will run you at least $1k (more like $2k with all these discounts we've been seeing lately) more than the 642. An 842 will be closer in price to the Prestige, but is still cheaper.
Everything I stated above is an absolute. Now here is my experience with the horns...I've played 6 Prestiges in my life, 4 YEP-642S. The Yamahas were nearly indistinguishable from each other, which is a Yamaha hallmark. The intonation on them is about as good as you can expect on a valve instrument. By contrast, only two of the Prestiges I've played were even close to being acceptable....the remainder were very stuffy and sounded like a sock or some other object was stuck in the bell. The remaining two were free blowing and projected nicely. Although I did NOT check the pitch on the Prestiges, I'm told by a couple of pros that the intonation ranges from acceptable to subpar...and this is WITH the tuning slide trigger. By contrast, the Yamaha has no tuning slide kicker and does not need one.
As far as tone, they were different. I thought the Prestige had a lighter, veiled sound compared to the very dark and thick tone of the Yamaha. This is a matter of personal taste. I thought the 842 was in between the two.
Bottom line...try them out for yourself as different horns grab different folks differently....however, you will need to try a bunch of Besson Prestiges and compare before buying. Chances are the next Yamaha your dealer gives you will be as good as the one sold to another guy last year across the globe.
Why are you limiting yourself to those horns? The compensating YEP-842, Miraphones, Meinls, Hirsbrunners, Sterlings, and Willsons are professional quality horns that warrant your attention. Play ALL of them and THEN decide. I'm told that Willsons, Meinls, and (of course) Yamaha have the best consistency so you won't have to play a bunch to find one you might like.