I ordered this mouthpiece to replace a Denis Wick 2L that came by default with a Besson BE 982. I've never got on too well with 'Wick' mouthpieces and I see the 2L as being too big for an Eb Tuba, it's more of a smaller BBb mouthpiece. But, at the end of the day I will also qualify those comments by saying that mouthpiece choice is (and should) be a very personal choice. The old view that one size (and piece) fits all is (and should) be a thing of the past.
I chose to try a Josef Klier Tuba mouthpiece because I already know their mouthpieces from Euphonium. I am a big supporter of their range of cup depths. They also manufacture useful options alongside the standard mouthpieces.
I chose a 7 because it is the diameter that suits me for Eb Tuba playing. I chose the 7B because it thought it would be easy to get on with initially and allow me much greater playing freedom then the overly large 'Wick' 2L. I was not disappointed at all!
The rim is beautifully rounded, yet at the same producing enough of a sharp bite to give me instant response and easy articulations. The rim specifications say it is slightly wider than the 'Wick' 2L but in reality I found it played a little narrower, much to my liking. Not a lot, but just enough to allow my embouchure the freedom of movement needed make me happy:-). The shoulder of the rim are not too deep which I think also help in flexibility.
The cup on the 7B is deep but with a more manageable throat size than some of the caverns that can appear on mouthpieces these days. All I would say regarding that is that "Size Is Definitely Not All." Externally, the cup is deeply cup shaped with enough mass to provide plenty of power when needed. Internally, the cup is a little more bowl shaped than the 'Wick' mouthpieces. This helps to darken the sound.
Playing on the 7B is an absolute joy. Period. It's design helps me to produce notes freely, flexibly and with great dynamic control across an extended range. The sound is glorious and organ like, bringing out the overtones just enough to produce a beautiful, rich, singing tone quality. Given that this is a smaller mouthpiece than the 'Wick' 2L I was surprised at how much easier it was to produce low register and pedal tones than the 'Wick,' a situation not unnoticed by me early on and further evidence for me that a 'Wick' 2L is not a suitable mouthpiece for Eb Tuba (too large).
Q. Would I recommend this mouthpiece? A. Absolutely Yes, Yes, Yes!!! So much so, in fact, I intend to extend my range of 7B's to offer me different cup depths that will give me the option to manipulate sound and playing style much easier for differing genres of music. This is a great benefit of the Josef Klier system who offer cup depths from A (really deep cup) to E (very shallow) in the & range and even AA (very, very deep) in larger cup diameters. I recommend looking at the Josef Klier Specification Sheet for full details.
Finally, a word on Musikhaus Thomann's customer service. I've been using Thomann for quite a few years now and their attention to detail and levels of customer service are absolutely exemplary. I will be a returning customer to Thomann for many years to come. For example: On this occasion I purchased only the Josef Klier mouthpiece. It was ordered late afternoon on Thursday. It arrived early morning the following Tuesday. Fantastic, speedy, safe, well packaged and thank you very much.
I hope readers will find this unbiased review useful.
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