New Yamaha Baritone Saxophones26th January 2021
Yamaha have just launched 3 new Baritone Saxophones for 2021. The YBS-480, YBS-62II and YBS-82 refresh the full Baritone model range for Yamaha. These instruments offer players at all levels and budgets a way into the Yamaha range.
Check out the specs and differences below…
These three new models are not only replacements but additions to the previous range. For many years Yamaha offered two models in the European market; the YBS-32 and YBS-62. Both were low A models and were talked about as Intermediate + Pro. However, the YBS-32 was always much better than ‘Intermediate’ but of course these terms apply for pricing and model range purposes.
The new model YBS-480 takes over from the old YBS-32, the YBS-62II obviously replaces the original YBS-62 and the YBS-82 is a brand new model. We’ve done a full in-depth preview of this model and why it was produced on this recent blog.
What’s The Difference? New vs Old Models
There are a number of core design differences which are true for all 3 new models compared to the old 32/62:
- Shorter bell design for more consistent sound across all registers
- New key layout/shape designs on: Front F, Low A, 8ve Key, Palm Keys, Upper & lower Table Keys
- New strap-ring positioning to balance the instrument more evenly (also allowing for shorter bell design)
- New peg receiver (peg included only on YBS-82 – Can be bought separately for YBS-480/YBS-62)
480 vs 62II vs 82 Differences
The YBS-480 and YBS-62II share a certain number of similarities, whereas the YBS-82 has some specific tech differences. Whilst all 3 share the main design principles above, the YBS-82 benefits from some touches reserved for the ‘Custom’ range.
The YBS-480 and YBS-62II are made of the same Japanese Brass, whereas the YBS-82 is produced using the special formula ‘Custom Brass’ which is found on the whole Custom range of Saxophones (82Z/875 etc).
The YBS-480 and YBS-62II are produced using a 2 piece bell construction method where 2 halves are joined together. The YBS-82 bell is produced from a hand-hammered 1 piece construction. Generally, the 1 piece bell is regarded as giving the most resonance and purity of sound. However, it’s common for many Baritones especially to be made from 2 pieces for production challenge reasons.
Top F# Tone Hole & Key Post Construction
The YBS-480 does not have a top F# tone hole, whereas the YBS-62II does. The YBS-82 is available with or without. The 480 key posts are soldered directly onto the body whereas the 62II and 82 posts are soldered onto ribs that run down the body adding additional strength, weight and solidity to the sound.
Neck & Mouthpiece
The YBS-480 and YBS-62II both have the 62 design neck. The YBS-82 is available with either the C1 neck (centred/compact sound) or the V1 neck (open/broad sound). The 480 and 62II come with a plastic 5C mouthpiece compared to an ebonite 5CM with the 82.
Case & Finish/Engraving
The YBS-480 comes in a standard hard case (no wheels), whereas the YBS-62II and YBS-82 both have cases with wheels. The YBS-480 and YBS-62II are both available in Gold Lacquer or Silver Plate, the YBS-62II also features a new engraving pattern (the 480 does not have engraving). The YBS-82 also features a new custom engraving pattern for the model and the instrument is available in Gold Lacquer, Silver Plate OR Unlacquered finish.
These new Yamaha Baritone Saxophones offer a great range of spec and playability. The YBS-480 is a little lighter in weight due to the key post construction and minor modifications to it’s production methods. This would make it ideal for smaller players or of course those respecting a budget. It’s still a mighty beast of a Baritone and would rival the Yanagisawa BWO1 as its nearest equivalent.
The YBS-62II continues where the original 62 left off. For many professionals this would be a great instrument to play and own as it offers incredible construction quality with a great sound quality. It rivals the Yanagisawa BWO2 and O20 models and Cannonball models.
The YBS-82 is really designed for elite performers and those wishing to indulge in the greatest Bari Sax production available. For those whom the Baritone is their main instrument and first love, this would be a dream model to own. It rivals the latest Selmer Baritone Models.
Shop all our Baritone Saxophone range here.