Synthetic Alto Sax Reeds

31st October 2022

In this blog with accompanying video we demonstrate and discuss a range of synthetic alto sax reeds and see how they compare against a can equivalent. Can you listen and guess which is which?

Reeds Compared

In this test with leading UK player Alastair Penman we compared the following reeds so listeners at home could hear how they compare:

Have a listen to the video above and see if you can hear the difference?

Synthetic vs Cane

We’re often asked if synthetic reeds are “any good” or “worth trying”? In 2022 we can confidently answer YES to both questions. That doesn’t mean they are right for each individual. But there are a raft of professional players now performing all over the world and using synthetic reeds as their #1 choice.

In general terms, synthetic alto sax reeds do feel and respond differently to standard cane reeds. So, the best approach is not to try and replace like with like, but to understand and work with the synthetic differences. After some time adjusting to them they can work alongside cane reeds to offer a different alternative.

How To Try Them?

If you’re interested in trying out synthetic alto sax reeds we’d suggest comparing a couple of different types. First choice would be the Legere Signature and VENN shown here. If you need any help choosing the correct strength please refer to the reed comparison chart below or contact us with your specific set-up.

synthetic alto sax reed comparison chat