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flash fire
BRONZE Member since Jan 2001

flash fire

Sporadically Prodigal
Location: Sydney, NSW, Australia

Total posts: 2758
Posted:Does anyone here play the flute?

The reason I ask is because I am determined to learn how to play this year, however I'm not sure what the best sort of flute to purchase, as a beginner with a specific taste in music, would be...

I've had a look around and can see that there are silver plated, nickle plated and silver/nickle plated. Can anyone here tell me the pros and cons of these? Also that there are off-set G's and in-line G's... again; what is better?

I want to learn to play really organic kinda music to float over the top of electronic/ambient beats. Like the stuff Raja Ram does with Shpongle. I understand that I will have to learn the fundamentals (scales and whatnot) and that I find myself a good teacher, but with a budget of no more than $600AUD to purchase a flute with, can anyone offer any recommendations? Second hand or otherwise?


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Dentrassi
GOLD Member since Apr 2003

Dentrassi

ZORT!
Location: Brisbane

Total posts: 3044
Posted:not sure whats the best buy, but the below link may be helpful in giving you an idea of what's around...

feeling flutish

hope that helps!


"Here kitty kitty...." - Schroedinger.

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Pyrolific
BRONZE Member since Jan 2001

Returning to a unique state of Equilibrium
Location: Adelaide, South Australia

Total posts: 3289
Posted:Wow that sounds cool Mate smile

My friend Nick plays flute really well (shpongle style) - I'll ask him for you.

Josh


--
Help! My personality got stuck in this signature machine and I cant get it out!

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Spanner
BRONZE Member since Feb 2003

Spanner

remembers when it was all fields round here
Location: in the works... somewhere...

Total posts: 2790
Posted:I play the flute. Have you tried it before?

It's very useful to learn the fundamentals. I found the best way to remember scales and so on, was to improvise with them. For the kind of music you'd like to play, I think practice in improvisation would be ideal and would benefit you greatly if you decided to try anything more classical as well.

Before you buy, it would be well worth looking at a Fingering Chart. 1, 2 and 3 are where your second, third and fourth fingers on each hand would be. If you can't borrow one, go to an instrument shop and ask if you can hold one there.

(The picture is of a flute which goes down to B. A beginner's flute would only go down to C but the foot joint, from Eb downwards, is controlled by only the little finger on your right hand anyway).

If you have a nickel allergy, you can buy a flute which is silver, or even gold in parts, plated or solid, such as the mouthpiece, keys and/or where your thumbs rest. Silver flutes are nice but, obviously, tend to be more expensive.

As for offline or inline Gs, it depends on how the flute feels when you move your fingers to a tune. Offset Gs are made for small hands, but if you've played another woodwind instrument before, even recorder, an inline G may be fine. Remember that the purest tone is acheived by standing up straight and playing the flute horizontal to your body, so that will affect how your fingers relate to the flute as well.

eBay is good for gauging a going price of a make and model of flute, but I wouldn't recommend buying one from there (sorry Dentrassi). If you try one at an instrument shop, don't be pressurised into buying one there because they've let you try them: shop around.

I think I started with a Selmer flute (it was about 12 years ago eek), which served me well as a beginner. Now I have a nice Yahama, which I bought from a flute specialist shop. If you can find your way to one, they would give you the most impartial advice.

Second hand flutes can be fine, though under 5 years old is better. As long as your keep your flute serviced regularly (annually is good for a beginner), you should have no trouble with the make and model you choose smile


"I thought you are man, but
you are nice woman.

yay,

:R"

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flash fire
BRONZE Member since Jan 2001

flash fire

Sporadically Prodigal
Location: Sydney, NSW, Australia

Total posts: 2758
Posted:Thanks so much for that spanner! I do have a major nickle allergy - thanks for pointing that out! I didn't even think of that...

So, I guess I need to get a silver flute smile I have smallish hands as well but played the recorder when I was a little girl so I'll just have to get me to an instrument shop to check it out.

Are there particular flute makes that have a more 'organic' sound? I mean, as a beginner I suppose it really won't make a huge difference at this point but I'm the impatient type.

bler - too much gin.

smile


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spritie
SILVER Member since Sep 2001

spritie

Pooh-Bah
Location: Galveston, TX

Total posts: 2014
Posted:I too have played the flute for years. I think it's a fabulous thing to want to learn how to play.

Since it sounds like you will be looking for a silver flute, one thing I should warn you about is that most of them will have open holes. For a beginner, this may be problematic. What it means is that the keys that you fingers are supposed to be covering will have a small circle hole in them. Ideally, your finger will completely cover this hole. However, as a beginner, yours probablly won't. If you do go to some sort of reputable shop, they will have "plugs" which you can buy and fill in these holes. If at some point you become efficient at covering those places where the holes would be, you can always remove them.

I have no clue which brand will give you a more organic sound. I know the muc cheaper wooden flutes will give you a more tribal sound, but I don't think that is quite what you are going for. The more expensive flutes will generally give you a clearer sounding tone. Choice of mouthpiece as well as brand will also change the tone somewhat.

Another thing to mention is that you can get a low B foot as well. You probably won't need to be worried about this. Normally, the lowest note a flute can play is low C. Occassionally, there is a symphony piece which will require a low B or B flat. This is very rare so I wouldn't invest in the slightly longer flute for your purposes.

Enjoy! And if you have any more questions, please feel free to ask.


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Spanner
BRONZE Member since Feb 2003

Spanner

remembers when it was all fields round here
Location: in the works... somewhere...

Total posts: 2790
Posted:In a way, I wish I'd started on a flute with open holes. It could have improved my finger positioning. I might invest in one in the future for "bending" notes.

As for an organic sound, I'd also recommend listening to plenty of Ozric Tentacles. In fact, I'd recommend it to anyone even if they're not learning flute biggrin

And preferably live, if possible. When I heard their flautist in person, I was so impressed, I almost fainted ubblol


"I thought you are man, but
you are nice woman.

yay,

:R"

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stripes
SILVER Member since Jun 2004

stranger
Location: england

Total posts: 41
Posted:i play flute, i'd say go second hand at first and put your money in to the lessons and good books- the older a flute is, the more natural and less... metallic... it sounds generally.

it may take you a while to get a really decent sound, but good luck with it- it's a great instrument to play (although admitting you play it became slightly harder after American Pie)


remember; they can't break you if you don't have a spine

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Gidg
BRONZE Member since Apr 2003

Gidg

Super Gidg!!!!
Location: Portland Oregon USA

Total posts: 8506
Posted:Stripes is right. I picked up a second hand flute put my money in lessons and books. I was really lucky with my flute, according to my instructer. I picked up a flute worth over $1,000.00 US for $50.00. Pawn shops can be so good.

Growing old is mandatory; growing up is NOT.
Proud member of the HoP DPS.
Sanity is a highly overrated state of mind.
I'm normal ... it's everyone else that's crazy.

Gidg

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flash fire
BRONZE Member since Jan 2001

flash fire

Sporadically Prodigal
Location: Sydney, NSW, Australia

Total posts: 2758
Posted:I just wanted to let you know that I bought a flute!! I got a nice silver plated yamaha 225S from ebay. I decided to take stripes' and gidg's advice and I bought a second hand flute with the intention to buy lots of books and take some lessons. When/ if I become good and have proven to myself that this isn't just another whim with a use-by date on the novelty factor, I will buy myself a nice new flute.

My flute won't arrive for another week or so, as I bought it from someone in the US, and I'm in Oz.

YAY! I'll let you know how I go.


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Elanna
SILVER Member since Aug 2003

Elanna

Where ignorance is bliss, 'tis folly to be wise.
Location: NJ or DE, USA

Total posts: 2293
Posted:Yay for flute players! T'is an awesome instrument. Should you decide to buy a nice new flute in the future, don't shy away from the ones with open holes. They come with plugs in the holes that you can take out whenever you're ready. smile

A good way to start off practicing is to only use the mouthpiece and try getting a sound out of that first before you assemble the whole flute. And make sure you don't hyperventilate while practicing! I did that when I first started out. Wasn't too pleasant... rolleyes


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Pies Jesu Domine *whack*
Dona eis requiem *whack*

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Ade
SILVER Member since Mar 2001

Are we there yet?
Location: australia

Total posts: 1897
Posted:Noice mate wink

I love the flute, haven't played one for a few years, but really, it wasn't that difficult to get the basic fingering and notes down.

If you've played sax or clarinet (as I had) I found it pretty easy to pick up.....


Hope you have fun with it! ubbrollsmile


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flash fire
BRONZE Member since Jan 2001

flash fire

Sporadically Prodigal
Location: Sydney, NSW, Australia

Total posts: 2758
Posted:OMG! How tricky is this instrument! I've had it for just under a week and have managed to teach myself the low c scale, but some of those high notes are bloody difficult! Methinks I need to take some lessons soon and get expert instruction on my embouchure.

Much respect to anyone who plays the flute. It's gonna take me ages to be able to jam with other muso's.


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Elanna
SILVER Member since Aug 2003

Elanna

Where ignorance is bliss, 'tis folly to be wise.
Location: NJ or DE, USA

Total posts: 2293
Posted:**giggles** Yah, those high notes are hard at first.

It may seem as if it'll take ages to be able to play well, but it really doesn't take that long. Especially if you're going to take lessons. If you practice an hour or so every day, you'll be jammin' with other people in no time. smile

Good luck, and have fun! smile


Are you suggesting coconuts migrate?

Pies Jesu Domine *whack*
Dona eis requiem *whack*

Come join us and chat - we're bored! irc.newnet.net #homeofpoi

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Ade
SILVER Member since Mar 2001

Are we there yet?
Location: australia

Total posts: 1897
Posted:Written by:
embouchure



apart from being a funky word biggrin

it's the key to your success in playing the flute

from that all else flows... hug


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