John Packer Blog

Welcome to the John Packer blog. Here we’ll keep you updated on all the latest happenings at John Packer Ltd, all the latest music news, musical instruments and competitions.

Month List

JP243 Soprano Saxophone a "remarkable instrument" says RCM Prof!

by Administrator 20. February 2012 14:20

We do love receiving feedback from musicians, and we were delighted with this glowing review on the new JP243 soprano saxophone from David Burnand -a music professor at the Royal College of Music...

JP243 soprano saxophone

"I received this saxophone last week and have had great pleasure playing it.

"The sax feels light, which for me is good, as I play without a sling and am now developing arthritis in my wrists. In fact it's 200gm heavier than my 1926 Buescher True-Tone, but so nicely balanced that it feels lighter on the right hand. Good news for us oldies and for younger/smaller players, too. I like the integrated neck and (therefore) absence of a curved alternative crook, thought his might not suit everyone. Overall construction and appearance are of a high quality.

 "Against expectations, I stuck with the mouthpiece provided, which plays very well. In fact, on this instrument, I prefer it to my (presumably more expensive) Vandoren, Barone and Link m/pieces. The square cross-section of the chamber arch reminds me of the Selmer S-80. It speaks clearly throughout the entire range of the instrument from low Bb to high G. Intonation is excellent. The usual variations at tops and bottoms of registers lie within a very narrow range on this instrument. Tone is even throughout the instrument. Inevitable differences of tone for overlapping notes either side of the break are useful, therefore, rather than sounding like different instruments, one too thin and one to thick.

"The keys are smooth, even, fast and well positioned. My relatively short little fingers can be problematic with low Bb on some instruments. No problem at all with the JP243, which has a well-designed plate for the left-hand cluster. On some instruments altissimo keys are often difficult to find or too easily opened inadvertently, especially for players with smaller hands. Not so with the JP243. Fingering is intuitive and comfortable on this sax.

 "In conclusion, this is a remarkable instrument for its price range, and I would recommend it to beginners and professionals alike."

Professor David Burnand
Royal College of Music

Click here to buy the JP243!

 



JP351SW Trumpet Receives Thumbs UP from NYJO and Royal College Prof.

by Administrator 17. January 2012 14:37

We're delighted to have received this review from Mark Armstrong about our JP351SW LT trumpet. Mark is Musical Director at NYJO and Jazz professor at the Royal College of Music. 

"I was recently asked by the chaps at John Packer's if I would review one of their recent introductions to the market - the JP351SWLT trumpet. Having both tried and been impressed by some of their earlier instruments I was keen to see what they had conjured up now. This interest was further enhanced by the fact that this instrument is a movement into new higher market areas for the Packer team and this means that you are battling with tougher opposition. Firstly the model number - 'SW' shows that, once again, Richard Smith (of Smith-Watkins) has been involved both in the overall design and, specifically, the all important lead pipe.  The 'LT' refers to the fact that the bell is very lightweight which, combined with the nickel silver reverse leadpipe, is an interesting combination on a large bore instrument.   

"On first sight I was impressed by the build quality - lovely construction and the slides and valves all moved sweetly and positively. Not only are Packers collaborating with the best designers in the West they are also using western grades of materials and, it seems, the best technology to ensure good construction quality. This instrument is over £1000 less than my own trumpet, but the build quality appeared to be equal.  It's impressive even when you open the case and look at it.  

"That's the cosmetics dealt with, but how does it all combine as a working tool for a musician? I tested this trumpet both at home and 'in the field'. My initial tests made me feel so confident in the instrument’s capability that it has now been heard by many people who have been to see Chicago in the West End. The sound is pleasingly warm and centred even at extreme dynamics and its overall characteristics make it ideal for jazz, big band or showmusic etc. Capable of power or subtlety with equal ease.   

"Frankly, at this price, this instrument is amazing value. Packer's intention in bringing higher quality & performance to the market place at accessible prices has certainly been achieved. I have been happy to use it professionally and will be using it again on Boxing day when I take NYJO to the Today [BBC Radio 4] programme.  This trumpet is without doubt capable of professional performance, but priced to be accessible to players doing the higher ABRSM grade exams. Great combination!"

See this wonderful trumpet by clicking here!



JP351SW LT trumpet

Flute Day Hosted by Internationally Renowned Flautist

by Administrator 5. September 2011 16:03

JOHN Packer Ltd and 4Flutes annual flute event will feature world renown flautist Paul Edmund Davies this Autumn.

Taking place on October 23rd at Plymouth University, Devon, from 10am-4.30pm the flute day is open to players of all ages and abilities.
Guest star, Paul is an astonishing player of great virtuosity and his reputation is at the highest level around the world, established as a flautist and soloist in the twenty years that he was principal flute of the London Symphony Orchestra, performing under the baton of many leading conductors including Leonard Bernstein, Rostropovich, Pierre Boulez, Kent Nagano and Andre Previn. He has performed on more than 50 film soundtracks, including classics such as Star Wars & Harry Potter. He is also Professor of Flute at the Royal College of Music.The flute day promises to be an exciting opportunity to listen and learn from one of the greats. Paul will even perform on the day in a final informal concert at 4pm.

4Flutes aims to bring opportunities to the southwest that are both affordable and accessible to pupils, parents and in general lovers of live music.

All places need to be booked in advance. Tickets cost £25 per person. For an application form or more details please see www.4Flutes.com or contact: Ruth Ballantyne or Mike Nottage on: 01752 844017/ 07779 063948.


For more information about Paul Edmund Davies you can visit his website by clicking here.