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BUFFET CRAMPON R13 PRESTIGE Bb CLARINET, £1895
This is a good condition Buffet R13 Prestige Bb clarinet, which was probably a custom order from Buffet.
This early Prestige features several improvements over a standard model.
There is an articulated C#/G# mechanism, the bell not only has a voicing groove to improve
the bell note response and tuning, but also a vent hole,
finally, the speaker key & tube have been re-designed to minimise bore intrusion. This
has several advantages, not only are the acoustics and response of the second register improved, but also the
risk of snagging the pull through is minimised.
After the 1981 take over by Boosey and Hawkes,
the Prestige range represented an attempt by Buffet to recapture former high manufacturing and quality control standards.
To that end the Prestige clarinet went back to the earlier specification: Unstained,
hand selected Grenadilla wood was used,
and more time was spent on hand finishing the instrument.
In addition an additional Eb/Ab lever for the LH was fitted.