The 10 Best Clarinet Brands (2022)

Buying a clarinet can be a difficult choice, but choosing from a reputable brand can make the process a whole lot easier. I’ll also include a bit of info about each brand and what they are best known for.

This is not a definitive list and there are certainly other prestigious clarinet brands that make high-quality instruments.

Since its founding in 1825, Buffet Crampon has been one of the most prominent and well-known makers of wind instruments in France. The Boehm system clarinets made by this manufacturer are particularly well-known.

They have such an advanced team, always updating their instrument-making that every new model that they introduce to the market, shows up with new features and facilities.

They have a wide variety of clarinets for beginners, students, and professionals. Besides the Bb standard and A clarinets, also Eb sopranino, A basset, and basset horn, Eb alto, F basset horn, Bb bass, and Eb contra-alto types.

Some models provide you with different material options such as ebonite, greenline material, grenadilla wood, mopane wood, and boxwood.

It’s not one of the most affordable options but even their clarinets for beginners are high quality and you can see, feel and hear the difference while playing. It’s worth it, you won’t regret it at all in case you choose the model you like.

Yamaha Clarinets are among the most well-regarded and admired clarinets available on the market. Torakusu Yamaha, a musician, and businessman created the brand Yamaha as a musical instrument manufacturer in Japan in 1887. Music instruments and motors are among the vast range of things that the company now produces.

Yamaha clarinets’ construction and setup quality are unmatched in the industry. Designed to fulfill the needs of students and professionals, Yamaha clarinets are durable instruments with good intonation and playability in both Boehm (French) and Oehler (German) key systems.

It may be the best-selling clarinet brand. It is a great choice also for non-classical (jazz, folk, etc.) musicians with very high-quality ebonite clarinet models for professionals with an incredibly rich and warm tone. Wooden models are also great instruments providing an excellent condition so that you may make full use of the instrument’s capabilities.

Yamaha clarinets are considered among the best in the world for their consistency, quality, and performance.

3. Wurlitzer

Screenshot of wurlitzerklarinetten.de

Wurlitzer is one of the best and unique clarinet brands manufactured in Germany since 1959. Wurlitzer clarinets hold their worth well due to their exceptional craftsmanship.

If you order a Wurlitzer clarinet, it will be individually handmade in Germany, ensuring that the instrument is one-of-a-kind. The company sees clarinet manufacturing as art, paying attention to every single detail during the process of manufacturing each instrument that takes years.

They can make you a clarinet with either the Oehler system keywork or you also have the option for having a Reform Boehm model with the Boehm system keywork, still keeping the Oehler clarinet sound if you want.

From A-flat clarinets to contrabass, they provide all types of clarinets.

French clarinet player Henri Selmer founded his brand and manufacturer workshop in 1885 in Paris.

Selmer clarinets are very well-known by both jazz and classical clarinet players.

Selmer clarinets give the freedom of intonation issues to clarinet players. The tone holes of Selmer clarinets are cut as if they are jazz clarinets and this causes flexibility on pitches.

You can find most of the members of the clarinet family and various accessories on their catalog.

The Canadian brand Backun was founded in 2000 by Morrie Backun. They manufacture high-quality clarinets in Bb and A.

Backun clarinets are made from woods of North America such as boxwood, rosewood, exotic hardwoods with carbon fiber for their custom clarinets besides the traditional grenadilla wood for the professional clarinets. They also have student clarinet options. 

6. Hanson

Screenshot of hansonclarinets.com

Hanson Clarinet Corporation was founded in 1989, by Alastair Hanson in the United Kingdom. By the end of 2010, Hanson Clarinet Company had introduced the world’s first FSC-certified clarinet.

7. Schwenk Und Seggelke

Screenshot of www.schwenk-und-seggelke.de

Clarinet maker Jochen Seggelke and clarinetist Werner Schwenk formed the company in 1996, in Germany. Historical clarinet remanufacturing has been the primary focus of the company’s business.

Also, this company manufactures clarinets both with the Oehler (German) system key mechanism and the Boehm (French) system key mechanism.

Taiwan-based KHS (holding company) founded this manufacturer and distributor in 1980 to produce a wide range of woodwind, brass, and percussion instruments.

They have a huge success in manufacturing beginner and intermediate clarinets. They are in the global top 5 of 2021.

In 1631, AMATI was founded as a musical instrument factory in the Czech Republic. They’ve been manufacturing wind instruments ever since. Many students and professional clarinet players around Europe choose Amati.

10. Benedikt Eppelsheim

Screenshot of www.eppelsheim.com

High and low-voiced woodwind instruments like the piccolo saxophone called Soprillo and the contrabass saxophone called Tubax are the specialty of Benedikt Eppelsheim. Their workshop is located in Munich.

They manufacture very high-level contrabass clarinets.

Before choosing a brand

The first step when choosing a clarinet is to figure out what kind of clarinet you’re looking for.

Are you a beginner? Then go with an affordable, ebonite, and still good-quality clarinet. Are you an intermediate? Then you can invest a little more, go with a good quality ebonite or wood student clarinet. Are you a professional clarinetist? Then it’s better to invest in a high-quality, professional clarinet.

To pick the right clarinet for your needs, you must consider several factors, including your skill level, the clarinet’s key system (French or German?), the material from which the clarinet is made, and the price and worth. Also, choosing a brand of a trustworthy, well-known manufacturer will make the process easier for sure.

Summary

All of these clarinet brands have different specializations and different ranges of price. Seeing a list like this may help you to better understand your needs, your expectations from an instrument, and also to realize what you really like in an instrument. You can find out more about these clarinets on their websites.

Arda Tuncer is a music producer, composer, songwriter, arranger, and performer. She releases music as part of the music duo, Kronik Leila. She has worked and collaborated with some prestigious orchestras around Europe, while also holding University positions as music theory professor and music research assistant. Arda studied music theory and clarinet at the Ecole Normale de Musique de Paris and completed her degree at the Conservatory of Strasbourg in France.

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