Re: hohner vs oscar--Custom harps
- Subject: Re: hohner vs oscar--Custom harps
- From: "Bob Maglinte" <bbqbob917@xxxxxxxxxxx>
- Date: Thu, 18 Sep 2003 11:34:02 -0400
- ----- Original Message -----
From: "Pat Missin" <pat@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Sent: Thursday, September 18, 2003 10:41 AM
Subject: Re: hohner vs oscar--Custom harps
> I think they are generally a more consistent product out of the box,
> although to be fair, I do have to say that Hohner's production
> consistency currently seems to be the best it has been in years.
> However, some people just prefer Hohners, in the same way that some
> guitarists prefer Fender or Gibson. Some people would rather play a
> sealed wood comb than a plastic comb and of those that prefer plastic
> combs, many of them prefer the tone of the Special 20 to that of the
> Lee Oskar. You can't really argue with personal taste.
> There are trade-offs with the Lee Oskar too - most notably they
> require more work to set them up for overblows.
> However, many of the things most commonly associated with the
> day-to-day work of the jobbing harmonica technician (comb sealing or
> replacement, cover plate modification, polishing out file marks on the
> reeds, etc., etc.) are simply not necessary on the LO because of its
> -- Pat.
Now I personally am not enamored with the sound of a Lee Oskar harp because
of its equal tuning, inherint brightness (which to my ears is also somewhat
thinner than a Hohner), and the plastic comb (though the one plastic comb
exception for me is Lucite), one of the reasons they do last as long as they
do is that unlike Hohner, they do NOT file across the reed diagnolly to tune
it, a method that altlthough will tune the reed much faster than if you
would file/scrape downward , sort of parrellel to the length of the reed,
filing across leaves very serious gouges and weakens the reed, and shortens
it's life span. I can't begin to tell you the HUGE number of players who
have repeatedly requested Hohner (including yours truly) to get away from
this tuning method, but it basically has fallen on deaf ears, and this isn't
something as recent as the ast 10 years, mind you. This has been a complaint
for DECADES. That, along with the tighter slot tolerances, IMO (remember,
this is my opinion so be cool) are among the chief reasons why a Lee Oskar
lasts as long as it does.
BTW, if all harp maunfacturers had all their harps sound like each others
harps, there would not be a true distinctive sound, and there would be
endless litigation battles concerning copyright, trademarks, patent
infringement, trade secrets, and so on, and that would run easily into some
serious multi million dollar problems.
As Pat mentions that some guitarists prefer Gibson or Fender, as an example,
I also play a little bit of guitar, and I can CLEARLY hear the differences
in their trademark sounds. There are plenty of musicians who hear certain
frequencies much better than some others, and an example of that was from BB
King in an interview from 20 years ago where he stated that he could hear
the highs much better than he could the lows.
Barbeque Bob Maglinte
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