Buying a recorder

If you’re thinking about buying your own recorder, here’s some recommendations.

Your first recorder: Yamaha 302 Soprano Recorder (click link for Amazon)

If you’re starting out, this is your best bet. At under $20, it is affordable for nearly everyone and still is a high quality instrument. Use this to learn your fingerings, learn to control your air, and the fundamentals of articulation.

More options:

Yamaha YRA-302B Alto Recorder

Yamaha YRT-304B Tenor Recorder

Yamaha YRB-302B Bass Recorder

Alto, tenor, and bass recorders each come with their own challenges. Alto has different fingerings than the soprano, but has a much more pleasing sound. Tenors have the same fingerings as sopranos, but the cost more and take some finesse with your air to get a nice sound. Bass recorders have the challenges of altos and tenors combined, with the extra stumbling block that they are seriously expensive. Committed, advanced users only!

I like the Yamaha 300 line because they have a nice quality level throughout the family of instruments, but they aren’t so expensive as other intermediate instruments. They all use the standard ‘baroque’ fingering, have adjustable tuning joints, and are built to last.

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About Chris Stroh

Seattle percussionist and music teacher. OAKE Executive Board member.
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