- This topic has 74 replies, 14 voices, and was last updated 4 years, 9 months ago by Davide Valdo.
- August 26, 2017 at 1:00 am #9199
My question might seem ridiculus. What actually has colour on a melodica? Is it only located on the keyboard or tubes and mouth pieces are coloured as well? I guess colour has nothing to do with sound at all.August 26, 2017 at 1:56 pm #9200
Great question, Olivier.
The main body of the melodica is typically a tray in which the keyboard and the inner works sit. That tray is plastic on the Yamahas and metal on the better quality Suzukis, wich I call the metal tray Suzukis, such as the M-37C and M-32C. The keys are white and black as on a piano, except for some Hohner Melodicas with multi-colored keys. Then there are the end pieces that may slide in and cover the whole end, as on the Suzuki, or may sit on top at the ends of the keyboard. There are some other configurations on some models. Then there is the button or lever (button on top on the Yamaha, lever that’s depressed at the end on the Suzuki) for the spit valve.
On the Yamahas, the tray, the end pieces, and the spit valve button are the same color. But if you refinish one, as I have done with my P-32D, you can get a nice visual effect by painting the end pieces and tray, and even the button, in different colors. On the Suzuki M-32C, the tray is blue, and the end pieces are a nice white (a cream color, actually). So it is more accurate to say it is two-tone in color, rather than referring to it as blue. Almost all mouth pieces are black, and the black mouthpiece adds to the over-all look of the Suzuki M-32C and some other Suzukis. The plastic spit valve lever is the same cream color as the end piece. The strap on the bottom is also black. In my opinion all of this creates a look of quality on the M-32C, and I think it is a very handsome melodica.
The strap is black on almost all melodicas.
We have had some discussion of how the color of the melodica affects our aesthetic experience and perhaps even our playing as we are using it. Although you are not seeing the melodica as you play it, Olivier, it probably is meaningful for you to have a sense of what it looks like. But the feel is also important. Both the Yamaha and the Suzuki models we’re talking about are very solidly built and feel good to hold. I like the way these 32 key models balance in my left hand, especially the Yamaha, though the Suzuki has an especially solid feel to it. I don’t use the strap.August 26, 2017 at 9:14 pm #9201
Thank you for your description of the melodica. I appreciate. Your explainations that you give on this site are good and clear. Yesterday, I plaid a bit with my Suzuki. I can confirme you this is a Study32. They are 2 things I don’t like about this melodica: the carrying case and the mouth piece. Because I can’t see the case and the shape of the melodica is moulded inside, I have difficulty to put the pieces in the exact sense as it has to go. I don’t have this problem with my Performer 37’s case. It’s much easier to put it inside. Sometimes, I’m not able to close the Suzuki case. Is the Yamaha carrying case similar to the Suzuki Study32?August 26, 2017 at 11:41 pm #9202
The shape of the Yamaha is also moulded inside its case, Olivier. The Yamaha case is of better quality than the Study 32 case. But with either one I don’t think you should have a problem if you think it through. With the front of the keys facing you, the bottom of the melodica fits down into the shallower well or opening of the plastic case. The deeper opening of the case is on the top or cover. There are four little depressions, two toward each end of the bottom of the case, into which the small feet on the bottom of the melodica fit. The mouth piece end is on your left. The mouth piece has to be removed from the melodica or it will not fit. On your Study 32, the mouthpiece snaps into a notched space on the bottom just in front of the right end of the melodica. That might give you some trouble, but with a little practice it shouldn’t be a a problem. With the Yamaha case, there’s a slot for the mouthpiece on the inside of the top.
The trickiest thing with either one is the long tube. On the Suzuki Study 32, it fits along the front of the bottom of the case, with the mouth end wrapped around to the middle of the right end of the melodica. On the Yamahas, the long tube fits around the left end of the top of the case, with the mouth piece end in front of the middle of the front of the melodica. The tube follows the slot around the end of the melodica and ends up about a third of the way along the top. There’s a space there into which the elbow fitting is placed.
I never use the long tube, so I either just leave it in place or leave it out. It or the mouth piece the most likely reason for the the case not closing. The fitting on the long tube that inserts into the Suzuki can be removed from the tube and used as an alternative mouth piece. I strongly prefer this to the regular Suzuki mouth piece.August 28, 2017 at 1:09 am #9203
This is because of the tube that I have problems. Most of the time I leave it in its place but sometimes I accidentally move it. Next time I will take out my Suzuki I will take a look about the alternative mouth piece because I hate the plastic cylindric one. Thanks for the info.
OlivierSeptember 9, 2017 at 5:55 pm #9286
Hi My Melodica Men!
Sorry I have been away, start of school season and all.
My Suzuki M32C arrived from Japan a few days ago (today I will finally be able to really practice on it!) and the blue color is very nice, Alan, as you said, “handsome”. The sound is very good, but need to figure out mouthpiece first before I can really comment more on sound, chords are slightly harder to play than on Yamaha P37 but I’m sure I will get used to that quickly.
1. it’s heavier than I thought it would be and slightly heavier than the Yamaha P37–I was able to hold them side by side as a student bought a Yamaha P37. The keys are a tiny bit thinner than the Yamaha too (Yamaha piano keys are also wider than the other pianos!) I’ll have to get used to that, I do wish it was a bit lighter, and my left hand isn’t big enough or strong enough to fully support it without using the strap.
2. The mouthpiece, I don’t like it at all, but just read through all the posts I missed here and I didn’t realize I could dismantle the hose and use the fitting (never use hose), I will try that as soon as I’m done typing this. (Also a student of mine, who’s a retired physicist!, said he has a basement full of stuff he thinks will fit.) If it doesn’t work out, I will read back through all these posts and looks at pics you posted Alan. The mouthpiece holder on the crappy Excalibur was perfect, I’ve taken a picture but need to post it somewhere so I can provide url, can I use dropbox? if not I’ll post it on an “invisible” page on my website, and put it here in next post. This forum has been so incredibly helpful, I am really grateful for it! Thanks Alan for convincing me to get the Suzuki M32C, no regrets whatsoever, but I think later I will also get the Yamaha P37!September 9, 2017 at 6:08 pm #9287
Ok, here’s link to pic of Excalibur thingy: http://wp.me/P2ktnP-3wk, let me know if it works.September 9, 2017 at 6:35 pm #9288
The link takes us to lots of interesting facts about Julie, Julie, but not to the photo.
It sounds like it’s a good thing you didn’t get the big Suzuki. How about putting your middle, ring, and little finger through the strap opening, and resting your thumb and index finger on the two sides. I have not tried that configuration until just now, but it seems to work well, with the melodica balanced. One reason I prefer a 32 key melodica over a 37 is that it is easier to balance in the left hand, so there should be fewer of the kinds of stresses that might create or aggravate an injury. And sooner or later you need to try a a Yamaha P-25F. There’s also a whole world of delightful vintage 25-27 key melodicas out there!September 9, 2017 at 11:41 pm #9296
Well, just had a good play and am liking even more! but…ugh, …the strap is too tight on my hand, it’s putting an indent into my skin at base of my fingers, wish I could loosen it, and my thumb now needs to be iced, even though it is straight and aligned with fingers, ugh, not good, and I tried putting a thin felt cloth but to no avail…suggestions? If I can’t remedy, I can’t play it as I’m a pianist and need my left hand thumb working properly 24/7!September 9, 2017 at 11:48 pm #9297
Just saw your comment, Alan, but my hand isn’t big enough to do that. I have a very small hand, I’m only 5’2″ tall. Anyway, can’t try anything just now, need to ice thumb, Bummer.
Sorry link was set wrong, this will work, still figuring out how to do “link-only” pages on my website, sorry about that! https://capeannpiano.com/melodica/September 10, 2017 at 12:18 am #9298
I have to go to an appointment on Tuesday near to a music store. I know they have the Suzuki M37C in store so I will be able to take it in my hands. I’m curious to see how it will feel in my hands. I will give you my conclusions for sure. So looking foward to Tuesday.
OlivierSeptember 10, 2017 at 12:23 am #9299
Got that image. A small key (vintage) model might work much better, though they are only available in 25-27 key vintage melodicas (except for the very first Pianica 32). My favorite is the Suzuki Study II 25, whose praises I keep singing.
Have you tried holding your melodica as Jon Batiste does, so that the weight of the instrument is where the strap meets the back of the four fingers? or as Lowboy sometimes does, with the spit valve end of the melodica cupped in the left hand and the mouth piece propped against your mouth?September 24, 2017 at 3:29 pm #9341
Hi Alan, and all, sorry for late replies but this is a very time of year for me! I am so grateful to get all this info on melodicas.
I’m getting used to my Suzuki M32 and really loving it. 🙂 I’m getting used to the strap, or maybe it’s stretching out a bit.
I’m playing with no mouthpiece but boy oh boy wish I could just find a bit of plastic to come out just like the like (that worked) above that I posted.
I told a student of mine about it, he’s a physicist and engineer, and he measured and came in with a long metal mouthpiece, similar to a trumpet, ugh!! He’s also a trumpet player. I told him it wouldn’t work. Also, like you mentioned a few comments back, it didn’t cover that space around the hole!
I tried taking the piece off the hose but the grooves (right word?) around it I didn’t like, weird feeling.
It is getting easier with no mouthpiece but LOL I have to figure out how to not squish my nose up against it so much!September 24, 2017 at 11:31 pm #9344
Just wanted to tell you that I like my Suzuki M37C a lot. It feels great. It sounds great. I don’t regret it. As for the mouthpiece, I will order a better one soon. My Hohner mouthpieces do fit on it so that’s great. Thanks again for your help.
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