YEP642II Neo Euphonium in Silver
Yamaha YEP642II Neo Euphonium in Silver
 

Yamaha YEP642II Neo Euphonium in Silver

Ref Code: 1EPY642N2


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As the most recent addition to the new line of "Neo" brass instruments, the YEP-642II is equally at home in solo or ensemble settings and allows for the most subtly nuanced dynamics and tonal inflections. The YEP-642II is available in lacquer or silver plated (YEP-642SII) finishes.

The development of the "Neo" line of brass band instruments utilizes some of the top talent in the world. The new YEP-642II was designed with input from renowned euphonium teacher Bill Millar and acclaimed soloist Steven Walsh.

Yamaha YEP642II Neo Euphonium in Silver

web price £6035.00

   

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Rating:

First impressions when handling the Neo euphonium are that it seems smaller than many of its rivals. Ergonomically, it feels ever-so-slightly unusual due to the angling of the 3rd valve slide closer to the main branch that means essentially that the player's left hand can grasp more of the instrument and more tightly. Access to the fourth valve is comfortable and very quickly you become used to the design. Other differences between the Neo and existing euphoniums include the placement of the first valve slide close to the fourth valve / 1st valve tube; and a leadpipe design that is noticeably different to its competitors. The combined result of these small but significant details is that this euphonium feels very tactile and easy to hold. As there is no tuning slide trigger, there are no bulky guards to interfere with a player's posture.

Mechanically the Neo is exceptional. The valves work smoothly and flawlessly and are capable of the greatest velocity while at the same time performing silently and efficiently. All slides are perfectly aligned and work with the minimum of fuss. The only area for a little caution is the previously mentioned first valve slide which is very close to the fourth valve tubing that links to the 1st valve, so rapid emptying using the slide rather than the waterkey might need a little care to start with.

The most important point is how the Neo euphonium plays. The initial reaction is that it is startlingly easy to play. Ease of production has always been a hallmark of Yamaha instruments and the Neo is no different. Air seems to travel very quickly and easily through the 642II, which results in very good projection and superb response. Notes that are traditionally problematic on most euphoniums, such as top C# and top E, speak with an ease that is rather bewildering. The notes "slot" extraordinarily well. It is increasingly common for contemporary euphonium players to have to negotiate Super Fs and Gs and the Neo enables the player to play these notes without effort. In the lower register the same ease is apparent, so much so that our tester mentions having to "back off" when playing bottom G or lower. The traditionally awkward notes between the pedal register and lower middle register also speak very well so that the tonal quality is more akin to an EEb bass than a euphonium player in an awkward register.

In terms of dynamic variance the Neo euphonium is almost unrivalled. From the most strident fortissimo playing in the pedal register to the most delicate nuances in the upper register, playing the Neo euphonium is a delight. The player can inflect the softer dynamics with a lovely breathiness that is quite compelling. The slightly smaller than usual bell aids projection so that a soloist can be comfortably heard in a band situation with recourse to some of the more nasal sounds commonly heard.

The Yamaha Neo euphonium has truly thrown a spanner in the works of the more "famous" euphonium brands, and should be at the top of every euphonium player's wish list.

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