Buying The Right Saxophone at the Right Price

I Completely Understand!

Does $300 sound like a lot of money to spend on something you may not enjoy? How about $2000? If you said yes, you’re not alone. This is a common thought among beginners when considering the purchase of a saxophone. To tell you the truth, I don’t blame you. However, a different perspective could change everything.

Another Perspective

Do you research before you buy a product? Have you ever looked at the price of a particular product for the first time and thought, “Wow! That’s really expensive”. Then, through further research you discovered that it was one of the lower prices. What happened next? Your perspective changed, and you begin to accept the price range.

Perspective Changer

With an accurate perspective of saxophone prices, you’ll be more informed in your search for purchasing a saxophone. Here’s the perspective. The following list contains common price ranges for new alto saxophones that are manufactured by widely trusted saxophone brands:

  • Beginner saxophone: $800-$2000
  • Intermediate: $1200-$2500
  • Professional: $2500-$8000

Yes, you could buy a small (used) car for the price of a new pro model saxophone. Shocking! But once you experience the shock, it helps place your saxophone purchase into financial perspective.

What’s Different About Brand Name Saxophones?

When you buy a brand name saxophone, you’re not buying “bells and whistles”. These saxophone brands have a history in quality production, and they back up their product. In fact, I’ve never experienced the need to return these saxophone because of poor quality, or because they simply didn’t work. These instruments are made so well, that they’ll probably be around longer than you, or even your children! Trust, longevity, consistency, and quality are a big part of what you pay for.

Quality Will Help You Succeed

A quality saxophone will help you succeed, and a poorly made saxophone may fight against you. Can you imagine learning the saxophone as a beginner, and buying a saxophone that fights you? First of all, how would you know it’s fighting you? You’re a beginner. This could result in the thought that you’re not capable of playing music. Then, you may quit, and the problem wasn’t even you! You simply didn’t know that you weren’t giving yourself a fair shot. So as you search for a saxophone, remember to arm yourself with an instrument that will help you succeed. This is exactly what brand name saxophones provide. To see some of my brand name recommendations, click here.

A Thought on Investment

Most new saxophones will go down in value after purchase. However, even though professional saxophones cost a lot more, they are an investment. After a few years, if you need to sell your saxophone, you probably won’t lose any money. For example, I purchased my Selmer Super Action 80 Series 2 saxophone for $2800, brand new, a number of years ago. The same model today (new) costs around $5,400. In addition, I could probably sell my saxophone between $3000-3,500. Just something to consider.

Keep This in Mind

Keep in mind that I’m not suggesting that you should go out and purchase the most expensive saxophone. If that fits your needs, then great. But if you need a lower priced instrument, you now have additional information to help you make a good choice.

Part 2

Next week we’ll discuss the less expensive saxophones (around $300) and the pros and cons of this category. Until then, I would like to ask a question: What type of saxophone do you have, and what do you like/dislike about it? Feel free to share in the comment section- we would love to hear what you play!

Comments 6

  1. I have an alto sax by rivertone, costed me around $550.
    The major priblem is that it requires hard blow of air while playing. May be its coz of the way i hold mouth grip n blow air into it or something.

    1. Post

      Hi Deepak,

      Go ahead and send in a recording of how you sound. You can play a few notes- that’s all I need. That will give me a good idea of where you are, and we can move forward from there. Just send the recording to my email. Thanks!

  2. Hi Jeff

    I’m a beginner and in late thirties and keen to play a sax. I’d like beginner to intermediate and I found a good deal for Yamaha as 100. I can go up to $ 1000. This one is 600. Also I don’t want to risk big money as I’ve never played a one.


    1. Post

      Hi Sam,

      Thanks for your question. It seems that this particular saxophone is a beginner model that is sold in Australia. The price you have been quoted looks to be a good price; it’s right in the middle of the pricing range.

      The $1000 price is a tough one. It’s more than you need for a solid beginner saxophone (used) and nearly enough for a pro model from newer companies to the market (such as a used Cannonball Big Bell Global series). If you can find a used Cannonball (pro model) for around that price, you may get more for your money. But of course, try the saxophone before you fully commit to it. And if you decide on the Yamaha, that will be a solid choice as well.

    1. Post

      If it’s the listing on eBay, I think there may have been some confusion in the description. Yamaha, Selmer, and Buffet are three different companies. However, Dan. Wu is engraved on the bell. I would think that this saxophone falls under the category of this post. If you have additional questions, let me know.


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