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Worth the money???



 
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Kevinbs
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 15, 2021 11:38 am    Post subject: Worth the money??? Reply with quote

Got about $1000 to spend on a trumpet as I am getting back into playing. I owned a Bach Strad 43 when I was in school (YEARS ago) and was at the music store checking out some options. They have an Allora ATR-580 Chicago Series Professional Bb Trumpet for just under this amount. The matte finish caught my eye but I have never heard of this company before but I am no expert. What is the opinion on Allora? Worth the money? What would you recommend in this price range? Really don’t want to spend Bach Strad money for something I just want to enjoy in my spare time.

Thanks for help and suggestions
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dr-pepp
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 15, 2021 11:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Since you are a new member here, I won't chastise you for not using the search feature, but a quick search provided this post from last year:

https://www.trumpetherald.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=154705&highlight=allora

I know nothing personally about Allora trumpets, but the comments in the above post are from credible sources.

If your budget is $1000, you can find many used professional level horns that I'd expect will play much better than the Allora. I have several for sale on my website within your price range, but I'm sure will provide recommendations.
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Dayton
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 15, 2021 12:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
What would you recommend in this price range?


In that price range you can purchase a used Getzen 700S, which is marketed as an intermediate-level horn, but is very high quality. Also, Eastman 800-series professional model trumpets are available used in that price range. They are well-made horns modeled on the Bach 18037 and 18043.

Good luck!
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Subtropical and Subpar
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 15, 2021 12:04 pm    Post subject: Re: Worth the money??? Reply with quote

Kevinbs wrote:
Got about $1000 to spend on a trumpet as I am getting back into playing. I owned a Bach Strad 43 when I was in school (YEARS ago) and was at the music store checking out some options. They have an Allora ATR-580 Chicago Series Professional Bb Trumpet for just under this amount. The matte finish caught my eye but I have never heard of this company before but I am no expert. What is the opinion on Allora? Worth the money? What would you recommend in this price range? Really don’t want to spend Bach Strad money for something I just want to enjoy in my spare time.

Thanks for help and suggestions


Allora is a Chinese maker of trumpets. There are varying opinions as to the quality of Chinese trumpets; much depends on the factory, the individual horn (like the Bachs of old), and whether or not the store in question has fettled with it to make it a bit better.

For $1,000 you could get a used Bach or Yamaha in decent shape, or a Getzen, or a Kanstul, or a like-new Carolbrass (made in Taiwan). There have been some great deals on Kanstuls since the company shuttered in 2018. Looking at the famous internet auction site, there is a really very sweet deal on one of the more interesting Kanstuls to me, the 1500A. A bronze 72-style bell, Reeves PVA, in gold plate, for just a bit over your stated budget. in gold plate, new, I think would be about triple the price.
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Kevinbs
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 15, 2021 2:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for all the advice and recommendations
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OldSchoolEuph
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 15, 2021 3:12 pm    Post subject: Re: Worth the money??? Reply with quote

Subtropical and Subpar wrote:
Allora is a Chinese maker of trumpets.


Actually, Allora is not a maker. Allora is a brand applied to trumpets made for the brand, sometimes in China, sometimes by VMI in Markneukirchen, sometimes elsewhere.

I have encountered Allora brand instruments that were well built and played as well or better than what would be expected in the product tier they were made for. I have also encountered Allora brand instruments that I hesitate to even dignify with the descriptor "toy" - absolute garbage sure to frustrate a beginner into quitting and never trying again (Aere series).

It all depends on the horn, and what supplier made it at what price point for Allora.

I have seen first-hand the poor build quality when Eastman tries to build a professional level horn - steer clear there, but some of the other suggestions for vintage, etc. in this thread make a lot more sense to me than rolling the dice on an Allora - unless you can return it no questions asked if its not one of the good ones.
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royjohn
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 15, 2021 5:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello Kevinbs,
There are a lot of horns made these days in China...some are just Chinese brands and some are made for US companies which supervise the quality control. I had some help from a pro trumpet repairer and converter and bought both a picc and a D/Eb trumpet from Chinese manufacturers very cheap. They both required some repair. The picc needed an alignment and needed burrs taken out of the valve casing tubing and a few other tweaks. The D/Eb needed the tuning bell shortened to play in Eb and needed a different bell to play well in D...it turned out that an Olds Ambassador bell worked great. But you have to want to work on the horn and to know which horn to get. Piccs from India similar to the Chinese model (4 valve) I bought are trash and will never play right because the bell flare is all wrong.

I agree with those who caution you to avoid the Allora and look around on the Marketplace here, with some of the known good repair guys (Melk, Brass Instrument Workshop, Josh Landress, etc.) and with some of the big brass stores like Dillon Music. If you can, make a pilgrimage to Dillon's and try out a bunch of horns. If not, consider buying by mail with the return privilege. You are bound to be able to find something you like for $1000, maybe less. As I noted in another post, vintage Bueschers and Holtons and some others are actually pretty cheap for the pro horns that they are...
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Trumpets: 1928 Holton Llewellyn Model, 1957 Holton 51LB, 2010 Custom C by Bill Jones, 2011 Custom D/Eb by Bill Jones
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Cornet: 1970's Yamaha YCR-233S . . . and others . . .
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Bryant Jordan
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 15, 2021 5:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Try it out! If you like it, buy it. Good luck!
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dr-pepp
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 15, 2021 5:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Bryant Jordan wrote:
Try it out! If you like it, buy it. Good luck!


So the OP has not been playing in a number of years but likes the matte finish on the horn that is in his budget. Do you really think his chops are in any shape to evaluate this horn? If he had someone else that could assist him in evaluating the horn, that would be one thing, but I disagree with your advice. Sounds like advice from the marketing department.
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spitvalve
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 15, 2021 6:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ditto on the Getzen 700. I love mine. Marketed as an intermediate horn but it's much more than that.
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SMrtn
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 15, 2021 7:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Why not a second hand Yamaha? Consistent horns and you can pick up a 4335 for around a thousand, or a 3 series for even less.
I wouldn't dice with an unknown quantity that may or may not be made in China.
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Brassnose
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 15, 2021 8:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Go for something used from a reputed brand. I have owned a few Chinese/general low cost instruments mostly for fun and rain performances and all of them had two issues: tuning was bad and the valves wear out rather quickly. Those issues two can be hard to fix and three to five years down the road you may find you want a quality instrument.

I am not a pro player by any means but a good instrument is so much more fun. You actually spend time playing it rather than oiling or repairing it.

Check out the well known pro shops like Austin Custom Brass, Dillons, Thompson Music, … you’ll find something.
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Trumpetingbynurture
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 16, 2021 12:39 am    Post subject: Re: Worth the money??? Reply with quote

Kevinbs wrote:
Got about $1000 to spend on a trumpet as I am getting back into playing. I owned a Bach Strad 43 when I was in school (YEARS ago) and was at the music store checking out some options. They have an Allora ATR-580 Chicago Series Professional Bb Trumpet for just under this amount. The matte finish caught my eye but I have never heard of this company before but I am no expert. What is the opinion on Allora? Worth the money? What would you recommend in this price range? Really don’t want to spend Bach Strad money for something I just want to enjoy in my spare time.

Thanks for help and suggestions


I recently saw that Josh Landress is marketing some cheap trumpets of his own under the name "MidTown Brass".

https://www.jlandressbrass.com/shop/Midtown-Brass.htm

I assume that both of the trumpet models would be Chinese made instruments, but "All Midtown trumpets have received a professional cleaning, precision valve alignment, and are play tested to insure consistency and quality through the line".
If you are purchasing without play testing, I'd go the MidTown option over the Allora personally.
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trickg
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 16, 2021 5:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

My suggestion would be to check out Austin Custom Brass and see what they have to offer. Trent has some really really solid horns that are quite budget friendly. I just bought a Brasspire Unicorn C trumpet from him - cost me about $900 but it's doing quite well with the other horns in the orchestra I've recently started to play with. I once owned a Yamaha C trumpet that in my memory did not play as well.

I don't know much about Allora instruments, but Trent personally vouches for everything he sells. In my case, after emailing back and forth and deciding to place the order, Trent posted a personalized video demo of the exact trumpet I bought, which was a nice reassurance that it was certainly a playable horn.

I also own an ACB Doubler flugelhorn. This is a horn that he has contracted and made specifically for his business - it's essentially an inexpensive clone of a Yamaha 631, but at roughly 1/4th of the price. I've had the opportunity to A/B that horn directly with a couple of different 631s, most recently with a National Guard band horn I was thinking of having issued to me, and honestly, it was so close that I simply didn't bother - I didn't need another instrument on my hand receipt. I paid less than $500 for that horn at the time.

Any time someone says they are on a budget but want a decent horn, the first place I suggest is Austin Custom Brass. He also has a fair number of solid used horns that are fairly priced.

To top off everything else, Austin Custom Brass is great to work with. They always make me feel like I'm their best, #1 customer, and it's part of the reason I continue to do business with them.

Seriously, for now, skip the Allora and give Austin Custom Brass a call - 816-410-0826

https://www.austincustombrass.biz/
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trickg
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 16, 2021 5:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

To add to this a bit, I just checked out The ACB web store. There are a BUNCH of horns there - some of them nice deals on shop demos - that are well within your budget, and some pretty decent selections on a few horns that would just stretch your budget a touch.

My Jupiter 1600i was a shop demo - I got an astonishingly good deal on that trumpet, and it was my go-to axe for a good long bit. It certainly helped me out for why I bought it, which was to clean up my playing in the wedding band - the slotting on that horn was just what the doctor ordered.

Certainly peruse the website, but your best bet is to call. They are happy to take the time to answer any questions you might have, and they will steer you in the right direction.

Yes, I'm an ACBassador.
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Patrick Gleason
- Shires Model B, Marcinkiewicz #2, Warburton 4SVW/KT
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"95% of the average 'weekend warrior's' problems will be solved by an additional 30 minutes of insightful practice." - PLP
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mikepodorski
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 16, 2021 6:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'll second the thoughts on Austin Custom Brass. The Doublers, as well as everything else I think, are optimized by ACB. So all the quirks and imperfections are worked out, especially on the valves, vs other places to buy. I have a Flugel and love it. They have the ACB 2RL which is pretty nice (available in satin finish). They also carry Manchester Brass, which I think is made by Carol Brass. Whatever they sell, they stand behind.
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