What Our Customers Say...
"This is an incredible mouthpiece top. After some 50 years of playing the trumpet as a professional musician, I finally realized that much of the swelling to my chops was the result of an allergic reaction from the silver plating on my mouthpiece rim.
The older all plastic cup/rim mouthpiece I purchased from Dr. Dave, while solving the allergic reaction issue, created other issues ie. sound, slotting and tonal response.
The 63 Lead V Hybrid Top is a total game changer. Much less swelling, shorter warm ups, more accuracy, greater tonal response and an incredibly centered sound. Thank you Dr. Dave. You have added additional 10 to 15 years due to your innovative designs to my playing life!"
Why Choose a Hybrid?
A Wedge Hybrid is an excellent choice if you want any of the following:
* A plastic mouthpiece that avoids the problem of metal allergies.
* A rim that feels warmer and more comfortable than brass.
* A slightly increased grip for better endurance.
* A warmer, rounder sound compared to a comparable brass mouthpiece.
* A plastic option that avoids all of the usual negatives of playing on plastic. Read more about that below.
The Good and Bad of Plastic Mouthpieces
Plastic mouthpieces have certain advantages. I have personally played on an acrylic top and brass backbore for several years. I prefer the plastic because it feels softer on my chops, provides better endurance due to the increased grip, and always feels warm.
However, plastic has certain disadvantages. Acrylic is fragile and will often crack when dropped. When comparing an acrylic mouthpiece to brass the slotting is not as defined or secure, the sound lacks a certain amount of core or density, and the start of the note lacks some of the clarity of brass. Plastic also does not provide the same feedback or connection between the player and the horn the way a brass mouthpiece does. I always feel a bit separated from the trumpet when I play on an acrylic top.
Wedge Hybrid Design
All that has changed with the new Wedge Hybrid mouthpiece. The Hybrid is a combination of a resin rim and cup insert permanently bonded to a brass base. The resin is a very hard, smooth, medical grade photopolymer designed for making dentures. It is therefore safe for long term mucosal contact, and unlike consumer grade photopolymer resin, is certified as non-irritating, non-allergic, and non-mutagenic.
The insert is made using a highly accurate, medical grade SLA 3D printer. It is then adjusted, hand polished and fitted to the base with a solid connection.
The resin is still somewhat prone to breakage, but much less so than an acrylic top, due to the hardness of the material and the bonding of the insert to a brass base without threads. I have personally drop tested a hybrid trumpet top onto concrete 20 times from a height of 7 feet with no damage to the insert.
Now on to performance. The great part of the Hybrid is how it plays, combining the best characteristics of plastic and brass. The Hybrid has the comfort and warm feel of acrylic, with a grip between acrylic and brass. It is more responsive than brass, with a clear start to the note. Slotting is excellent, and the feedback to the player is the same as brass. The sound has a great center and core, and is slightly warmer than a brass mouthpiece of the same design. Projection is excellent when the mouthpiece is pushed.
Hybrid mouthpieces are now available for most models in the online store.
3D Printed Polymer Mouthpieces
Our acrylic and delrin mouthpieces are being phased out and replaced with a superior and affordable alternative.
These mouthpieces are the product of many months of research and development. They are printed with an FDA certified safe biomedical photopolymer on a medical grade 3D printer. They do not slot or sound quite like our silver plated brass or Hybrid mouthpieces (they sound a bit darker), but they do play great and will give you a clear idea of what the Wedge design can do for your comfort, range and endurance. You will be amazed that a polymer mouthpiece can play this well and sound this good. These are NOT just more cheap plastic mouthpieces.
Plastic mouthpieces are an excellent choice for players with metal allergies, those who play in the cold and players with braces or those who prefer a softer feel. This material is stronger than acrylic, but the shank can still crack if the mouthpiece is dropped on a hard surface.
Add a Sound Booster
A sound booster is highly recommended for these mouthpieces. The added mass of the sound booster improves slotting, provides more secure attacks, and adds core to the sound. The sound booster cost is $50 and works very well on our silver plated brass and Hybrid mouthpieces. It can be returned for a refund.