The reed is an integral part of the clarinet and finding the correct one can be confusing at times. Most reeds come in varying degrees of hardness normally on a scale of 1 to 5, where 1 = softest and 5 = hardest and are usually made from cane. There are a few 'general' rules when selecting reeds, one being that the narrower the tip of the mouthpiece the harder the reed and, conversely, a softer reed for a wider mouthpiece tip.
It is also suggested that beginners usually start with either a grade 1.5 or 2 reed and then progress to a 2.5 or 3 as their embouchures get stronger where a harder reed offers a broader, fuller tone. However, choosing the reed can be a very personal thing depending on your playing ability, the style of music you prefer to play and the tone you want to produce. We also suggest, of course, that you ask your teacher for advice.
Here at Yamaha Music London we sell a range of clarinet reeds from world-famous manufacturers like Vandoren and Rico.
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