Looking to buy the best Clarinet? Check out our guide below and you’ll be well-placed to select the correct one for you.
What to Look for in a Clarinet
Clarinets are excellent first instruments for both children and adults since they are compact, lightweight, and expressive reed instruments.
However, knowing how much to invest in an instrument and what you’re paying for might be tough at times.
Below is a list of clarinets for beginners, intermediates, and advanced players, as well as information on reeds, mouthpieces, and other accessories to consider before purchasing an instrument.
What characteristics should I search for in a decent beginner clarinet?
Depending on the player’s age, money, and goals, there are a variety of solutions available.
If you have extremely young children who wish to learn to play a reed instrument, for example, a NUVO super-durable and easy-to-master plastic instrument might be a good option.
The DOOD is an extremely light plastic clarinet that uses the same fingering as a recorder, allowing youngsters to transition easily from one instrument to the next.
It has plastic reeds and case (the only non-plastic pieces are the metal springs), making it nearly indestructible. It can endure water, knocks, and cleaning in warm soapy water.
You can also use ordinary wooden Eb reeds to introduce children to regular wooden reeds, and the small size is ideal for small hands.
It’s also a bargain at £20, and because it’s in C, you can use it in ensembles with other instruments right away without having to transpose anything.
The Clarineo is a good alternative to consider if you want a plastic instrument that uses clarinet fingerings yet is still lightweight, sturdy, and suitable for small hands.
It’s a perfect transition instrument or starter for the more accident-prone among us, as it’s designed to lead directly on to a full-size, “real” clarinet.
It also comes in a variety of fun colours including lime green, red, and blue, and offers you online access to a variety of backing tracks and music.
It’ll get you through your first grade exam, or if you’re just playing for fun, the C tuning allows you to get right into playing your favourite music without having to transpose and yet obtain a calm sound.
The Elkhart Student Clarinet is at the lower end of the student instrument spectrum (clarinets that can be used in early ABRSM tests and have wooden reeds).
It costs about a third of the price of the Buffet B12, and we think it’s one of the greatest clarinets under £200.
It’s ideal if you want to give a high-quality instrument a try but aren’t sure if you or your child will stick with it after the first few years.
If you know you’ll be practising for longer than that, or if your child currently plays and appreciates other instruments, it’s a good idea to invest in a little more expensive instrument, as you’ll probably outgrow the Elkhart after one or two years of training.
It’s also less durable than the more expensive student clarinets, so it’s unlikely to endure as long.
You can always choose this option, because if you buy with us and subsequently decide to upgrade, we’ll gladly consider a part swap on a more complex instrument.*
The Buffet B12 model and the Yamaha YCL255 are the next steps up for individuals seeking to take their playing to grade 5 and beyond.
Both are constructed of plastic, making them lightweight and durable, and they are of very excellent quality.
If you hire an instructor, you might discover that these two clarinets are the ones they recommend.
They can last 3 to 4 years between purchases with regular service**, and both can tolerate extremes of heat and humidity, which can cause difficulties in more expensive wooden clarinets.
This means that if you’re going to be touring or travelling with your instrument, it can take a battering without breaking down.
In fact, we frequently encounter clarinets of this sort that are 10 or 20 years old and still play wonderfully, proving that they can withstand the test of time!
If my clarinet is good, why do I need to upgrade from a student instrument?
The major reason you’ll need to upgrade is to gain access to the spectrum of dynamics and expression that a plastic or resin instrument can’t provide.
Wood is used in more expensive clarinets, which boosts the sound’s resonance and richness.
They aren’t advised for beginners because to their high price and increased weight, but they will significantly improve the quality of your sound.
At this level, the variations between Yamaha and Buffet clarinets become more evident, but they are both wonderful brands – it’s more a case of different than better.
Yamaha’s production is fairly consistent, so you can always expect a solid, consistent sound.
As a result, they have less of a distinct personality.
Buffet creates fewer clarinets, and the tiny variations allow for a more distinctive sound.
They also have slightly more expression on the whole than Yamahas, but several Yamaha models are preferred for jazz and big bands because of their brighter sound, which allows them to cut through textures with greater ease….all it’s about swings and roundabouts, really, and we’d always encourage you to try several clarinets from different series at the shop with your own mouthpiece and a selection of reeds to fiddle with.
Is there anything more I need to get started?
There are a few things you’ll need before you begin, but they’re not too expensive.
The first item you’ll need are the reeds, which are the instruments that produce the sound.
Reeds exist in a range of brands and strengths, and you’ll usually start with a softer reed and work your way up to a harder one as your strength improves.
However, not every skilled player uses a hard reed, so it’s not a case of going from soft to hard.
If you’re not sure what reed strength to get, either ask your teacher or buy a range of different strengths (they cost roughly £2-£3 apiece) and try them all out.
Just remember that because they’re made of wood, there will be inherent variations even within categories (for example, two Rico strength 2 reeds may sound and feel quite different), so don’t dismiss any reeds until you’ve tried a few.
You’ll need reeds frequently at first (they’re quite fragile at the tips and prone to breaking, and they also naturally warp after a lot of use, if not allowed to dry between uses, or if not kept flat when not in use), but once you’ve figured out which brand and strength suits you best, you can buy boxes of ten from us at a 10% discount.
A pull-through cleaning cloth to dry condensation from the inside of the instrument, cork grease to help you assemble and disassemble your instrument (which you’ll be doing a lot if you need to travel with it), and possibly a rubber thumb rest to prevent yourself from getting interesting indentations on your right hand are all cheap and cheerful additions.
Why not use a mouthpiece?
I’ve heard I need a new one, but don’t clarinets already come with one?
New mouthpieces should only be considered after you’ve been playing for a time.
They can help you fine-tune your sound, improve tuning, and increase volume and projection.
However, acquiring a new one until you’ve learned the basics is pointless because you won’t know what you’re searching for.
People can prescribe this or that mouthpiece, but because everyone is different, everyone will require a unique mix of clarinet, mouthpiece, and reed, and what works for your teacher or buddy may be disastrous for you!
Consider it a Harry Potter wand experience: you’ll need to experiment with a variety of mouthpieces on your clarinet while utilising a variety of reeds to find your magic combination.
If you acquire the Buffet B12 or the student Yamaha (YCL255), the mouthpiece that comes with your clarinet will most likely be sufficient for beginners.
A different mouthpiece will likely benefit a less expensive clarinet – the Yamaha 4c or 5c would be a good place to start if you weren’t sure what you required.
Best Clarinet To Buy
- 🎅🎄Excellent quality and beautiful sound -- Born for professional performence, also suitable for beginners and intermediate players.
- 🎅🎄Elegant Appearance -- Silver plated keys,which looks more noble and bright. ( Not cheap but exactly value for money)
- 🎅🎄Advanced Materials -- The body is made of high quality bakelite; high-grade sausage gauze: great air tightness, moderate elasticity and good durability. Needle spring: The memory needle spring made of NAS high carbon steel is responsive and has excellent hand feeling. Leather checkpoint: The sound package is high and the play is effortless.
- 🎅🎄Practical Design -- Eastar patented one-piece clarinet body; Buffy 17-key design, cylindrical sound hole; 2 Mouthpieces Connector: 62MM+65MM
- 🎅🎄Package Included -- ECL-400 Clarinet x1,Cortical Ligature, Metal Ligature, Eastar 4C Special Practice Mouthpiece, Mouthpiece Protective Cap , Thumb Sheathing, 2 x Mouthpieces Connector ,Cloth, White Gloves, Clarinet Swabs, Eastar Clarinet reeds(3-pics), Advanced Hard Case
- ♫【Clear Rich Sound】The b flat clarinet is equipped with a new 17-key button system for smooth playing. ABS resin of this clarinet brings stable, pure, and rich sound to the tube body. Fast key response and smooth playability arouse a unique tone and wide range
- ♫【Exquisite Appearance】Elegant and shiny clarinet body and bell mouth with durable nickel-plated keys, effectively reduce oxidation and improve the corrosion resistance. Superb craftsmanship makes the clarinet durable and eye-catching
- ♫【Quality Material】The student clarinet is made of high-level ABS bakelite, which brings a pure and bright sound, and stable vibration. Ensure a long time use and mellow sound quality
- ♫【Perfect for Beginners】The clarinet kit is fully equipped, and easy to install and tune. Its adjustable double mouthpiece connector for easy adjustment and tuning. This orchestra clarinet is suitable for many occasions, such as solo, performance, and grade examination
- 🎁【Full Clarinet Kit】Our Bb flat clarinet kit includes a 4C mouthpiece, hard case, lip balm, tooth pad, stand, brush, detail manual, 10 reeds, and resin reed, gloves, shoulder strap, mouthpiece protective cap. It comes with everything needed, helping you get started quickly and learn easily
- ❤️High-Quality Material – The clarinet is made of Italian felt double sheep casings which are generally used in performance level flutes leading to good elasticity ,air tightness and long life .The memory needle spring made of NAS high-carbon steel, quick reaction, good elasticity, not easy to deform.
- 🎁 Elegant Appearance–Combining a plastic body with nickel keys, the clarinet is designed for easy tone production and durability. With strong projection and smooth, and looks more noble and bright.
- 🔥Pure Sound–Excellent quality and beautiful sound,born for professional performance, also suitable for beginners and intermediate players.
- 🎄Practical Design -Key of clarinet Bb,17-key, 6-ring nickel-plated keys,2 Mouthpieces Connector: 62MM+57MM.
- 🎅Guarantee & Warranty–If you for ANY reason don't like the clarinet, Simply just Contact us within 6 months for a FULL REFUND.
- CLARINET INSTRUMENT SET: It supplied reeds, cleaning cloth and other accessories for convenient use, a popular instrument in classical and jazz music, as well as part of military and marching bands.
- VERSATILE INSTRUMENT: This Bb clarinet is a versatile instrument with a truly distinct timbre that is renowned for its smoothness.
- EASY CARRING: You can put all of these in the portable bag for easy storage and carrying. A good choice for professional and amateurish clarinetists.
- EXQUISITE DESIGN: 17 Key Clarinet is made of bakelite, descending B modulation tone clarinet with 17 key, exquisite and stylish design to satisfy your taste.
- GUARANTEE. If you are not satisfied with our product you received, you can send emails to us at any time. We will reply you instantly and help you solve your problem.
- Great quality student Bb clarinet. Perfect for beginners and students
- Comes with everything you need to get going, Durable ABS plastic body in wood-matt like finish
- One of the best student instruments on the market, recommended by teachers
- Complete with lightweight carry case and accessory pack. Off set trill keys
- Clarinet is lightweight, robust and has a clear, responsive tone, Adjustable thumb rest
- 🎼Made of ABS, B flat clarinet with 17 key.
- 🎼Exquisite and stylish design to satisfy your taste.
- 🎼The keys are made of cupronickel plated nickel, delicate and beautiful.
- 🎼Come with a padded box and a piece of strap for protecting instrument and easy storage, convenient to carry along.
- Little cork grease to offer help to take things apart or assemble.
- Made of ABS, B flat clarinet with 17 key.
- Exquisite and stylish design to satisfy your taste.
- The keys are made of cupronickel plated nickel, delicate and beautiful.
- Come with a padded box and a piece of strap for protecting instrument and easy storage, convenient to carry along.
- Little cork grease to offer help to take things apart or assemble.
- Hand orientation: LEFT AND RIGHT
- EASE OF PLAY – Featuring a thinner vamp and unfiled cut designed for ease of play and a traditional blank for a clear sound, D’Addario Woodwinds B♭ clarinet reeds are ideal for students, revered by educators worldwide and a favorite among jazz musicians.
- FROM FIELD TO FACTORY - Harvested by hand in France, the cane specifically grown to make Rico reeds is the finest in the industry. D’Addario’s new state-of-the-art digital reed-making technology has resulted in unprecedented quality and consistency in today’s Rico reed.
- EDUCATION STANDARD - Rico reeds have been the standard among teachers and students for generations. Priced affordably, Rico reeds are designed to reward the student with an immediate sound.
- PACKAGING OPTIONS – Rico strength 2.0 B♭ clarinet reeds are available in 3-reed packs and 25-reed Novapak reed dispensers.
- D’ADDARIO WOODWINDS – For nearly a century, the name Rico has been synonymous with quality reeds. Now part of the D’Addario family of musical instruments and accessories, D’Addario Woodwinds has revamped the reed-making process to create the most consistent reed in the world.
- Fits bb and a clarinets
- Sturdy leather tab
- Attaches to most standard thumb rests
- Easy-slide adjustor
- Simple adjustment of strap length
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