Posted by Steve Oberheu on February 08, 1999 at 18:41:36:
In Reply to: Hirsbrunner vs. Meinl Weston? Which is better? posted by Jon Piper on February 07, 1999 at 22:44:32:
Hirsbrunner, *to me*, wins hands-down. It has qualities that all good horns have (good sound, response, intonation, valve position, versatility, etc.), but the most important one is what I like to call the "thoughtless playing" quality. That is, the horn responds to you very quickly and you don't have to think and consequently work too much to produce good music. The Hirsbrunner I bought at the factory from Peter Hirsbrunner himself and I love it more and more each day. This is solely comment on my experience buying the horn for me.
So, will the Hirsbrunner be the same thing to you? Maybe, maybe not. Give each one a thorough testing, but make sure you're focusing on important things like intonation tendencies, response and tone quality and see that it is to your liking. Don't just see how "Ride of the Valkyries" sounds. Try some other horns that you never thought you would have considered just to expand your frame of reference (including a Mirafone 186, which I consider to be the Fender Stratocaster of the tuba world). Take someone whose ears you trust with you to have a second opinion if possible. You'll find YOUR horn that's an extension of YOU, and no one else.