Wisemann DCL750 Bb bass clarinet

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The first thing that strikes you about the DCL 750 is the quality of both the finish and the engineering. Manufactured in China by a Taiwanese company, this is an exceptionally well made instrument. The main body of this bass clarinet is made from a resin composite that is specially manufactured to mimic ebony, while the nickel plated brass crook and the bell are solid and beautifully tooled to fit easily and snugly onto the body. The keys are also nickel plated and are comfortably positioned, well balanced and have a very positive feel. I fitted the generic mouthpiece with a No. 3 reed, and the DCL750 turned out to be a remarkably easy player – particularly down at the bottom end. Intonation was excellent and the tuning was spot on. The depth of the dynamic range, the resonance and the warm, of the rich tone, also pleasantly surprised me.

Slightly annoying, though, is the positioning of the non-adjustable thumb rest, which invariably meant catching the Eb key with the top of the index finger and consequently blowing out. Although I never tried it, there is the added convenience of an adjustable lock for those players wishing to play the instrument on a stand. The DCL750 comes in a plush lined, fully fitted traditional hard shell case, with reinforced corners, double latch locks and grab handles to both the top and the side.Good quality bass clarinets are notoriously expensive, so this competitively priced offering from Wisemann could find a ready market for those tempted to go “out to lunch” as Dolphy once said. www.bandbandm.co.uk