Yamaha YAS82Z Alto Sax

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Yamaha-YAS-82ZYamaha players will immediately feel at home with the new 82Z – it feels, handles and responds just like their favourite sax. Sonically however, the new 82Z with its V1 neck is something of a surprise – some might say ‘a breath of fresh air’. ‘Be yourself with your Yamaha’, says the marketing blurb. Which sounds like something we’ve been waiting for, for sometime!

The 82Z follows type: solid build and superlative finish. There really are few saxes out there that are built with this level of craftsmanship: the close fitting neck, the positive key movement, the perfectly placed nicely sprung palm keys all help give a player confidence and control. And there are some positive new developments to the keywork of the 82Z. The featherlight octave key mechanism is a real plus and the low B/C sharp connection is really positive, as is the adjustable front F key.

Needless to say, quality parts such as blue steel needle springs, nylon tipped tapered pivot screws and silicone treated leather pads with metal resonators, come as standard.

The one-piece hand-hammered bell, in combination with the open conical bore of the V1 neck, certainly gives this baby some attitude – she’s free blowing and there’s more projection than you could swing a sock at. That Yamaha solid-centred tone is all there, and the dynamic range seems wider than ever, particularly down at the bottom end. Intonation, as would be expected, is spot on, and the harmonics really sing. Top C-sharp – no problem. In fact, it was better than the house Selmer Series 3. This new Yamaha really takes a step forward in the freedom of expression stakes, and we’re beginning to believe the marketing blurb. The Alto 82Z really does break out of the mould – and there’s a Tenor model too. The whole outfit comes in a traditional, plush lined, compartmented box style leatherette rectangular case, with twin latch locks and central hinged catch, nylon feet and grab handles to both the top and side.

For more go to www.uk.yamaha.com