Written on: 08/03/2009 by rhmsax (1 review written)
All notes speak with authority throughout the entire range, including altissimo. Great centered tone, projection and tonal flexibilty...much better than my 110000 cira M6. What a nice suprise!
Keys do not have the compact placement or feel of a M6 (tenor). Contrary to the ads, the M6 is a faster horn to play.and is superior to the 54. The 54 is also quite a bit heavier than the M6.
Tried about 8 different Reference 54 tenors before making my purchase. They were all fairly close in overall sound and general playing characteristics. Selmer quality control and uniformity has definitely improved since the time when I brought my M6 tenor in 1963. Back then there was very little continuity from one horn to another, especially in the bottom register.
I carefully tried and compared the 54 to all others (including Series II & III, all Yamahas, Yanis and Keilworth) and none of them had the subtle sonic qualities of the 54. They were all good pro horns, but lacked that unidenfiable "something" that made the 54, like the M6, stand out.