10mFan Showtime Tenor Saxophone Mouthpiece Review

Mark Sepinuck, 10mFan as he is known in the saxophone world, has been producing a line of tenor and alto saxophone mouthpieces for the last six years that have been very popular with saxophone players around the world.  I have reviewed some of 10mFan’s tenor sax mouthpiece models in the past such as the Robusto, the Black Widow and the Classic. Recently I have also reviewed his alto saxophone models, the Showboat and the Daddy-O.

Mark has recently released another 10mFan tenor saxophone mouthpiece called the Showtime which I am reviewing today.  Mark describes it as being in the same category as his Robusto tenor sax mouthpiece which has been one of my favorite sax mouthpieces I have reviewed here so I was curious to try the Showtime tenor mouthpiece also!

10mFan Showtime Tenor Saxophone Mouthpiece

Here’s the description of the Showtime tenor saxophone mouthpiece in Mark’s own words from the 10mFan website:

“SHOWTIME”  hard rubber – Powerful, classic sounding, focused, open sounding piece with extra punch and a freer blow.

This is much more free blowing than the vintage hr Links, and has much more volume available, better intonation, far more flexibility and versatility, beautiful evenness  in all the registers, and it’s simply an incredible all-around player that can do it all from warm  and lush to powerful.

Mark was nice enough to send me a sample 10mFan Showtime tenor sax mouthpiece in a 7** tip opening (.108) to try out for this review.

From above, the 10mFan Showtime hard rubber saxophone mouthpiece looks the same as the 10mFan tenor sax mouthpieces I have already reviewed.  It has the signature three white lines on the shank which I think is a great marketing idea.  You can spot these three lines from pretty far away and know what mouthpiece brand a player is using.

The mouthpiece has Showtime engraved in white on the top as well as 10mFan in cursive engraving.  When you look at the table side of the mouthpiece, the table is flat and smooth and the rails, baffle and tip look even and perfect.

The Showtime has a baffle that is similar in size and shape to the baffle in the 10mFan Robusto mouthpiece that I reviewed years ago and still have.  The main difference that I can see, is that when the baffle drops and terminates with the Robusto,  it is close to the front of the chamber.  The Showtime baffle drop and continues on right through the chamber at an angle and terminates at the back of the chamber where the bore starts.  This has the affect of making the chamber smaller than the Robusto chamber size.

The Showtime baffle also looks to be a tiny bit longer than the Robusto baffle.  As I look at my Robusto and the Showtime side by side, the Robusto also looks to have a tiny bit more of a rollover baffle near the tip that I can’t see on the Showtime mouthpiece.  The side walls of the Showtime start straight but are scooped out close to where the baffle changes direction.  In comparison,  the Robusto sidewalls are straight all the way until they reach the chamber.

10mFan Showtime Tenor Saxophone Mouthpiece

I tried the 10mFan Showtime sax mouthpiece with a variety of reeds but found that I liked the Rigotti Gold 3 Light and 2 1/2 Strong reeds the best.  The two reed strengths played with enough of a difference that I included some clips of both for you to listen to below.  I know from experience that some will dig the softer reed and some will dig the slightly harder reed……

In my opinion, the harder reed has a more thick tone that has a lot of character to it.  The softer reed has a brighter sound to the tone.  I added some reverb to each clip also so you could hear how it sounds with reverb.

10mFan Showtime Tenor Saxophone Mouthpiece

One interesting thing about the 10mFan Showtime is that this is a mouthpiece that I like the sound of in the room,  as much as I like it when playing into a mirror or wall.  This was a strange experience for me.  I would say that 99% of the mouthpieces I have reviewed, I have played into a mirror in my office to best hear how they sound.  Usually, when I play into the open space of the room, the sound is spread and diffused around the room. It is hard for me to hear the “core” sound of the tone.   When I play into the mirror,  the sound bounces right back to my ears and is more focused and compact sounding,  helping me to hear the “core” sound of the mouthpiece.

Playing the Showtime mouthpiece was quite different than this experience. When I played it into the mirror, I didn’t hear much of a difference from the sound when playing it into the open room.

I have been scratching my head and pondering why this would be so and I think maybe it is because the Showtime mouthpiece is more focused in tone already.  When I play into the room, I don’t hear that typical spread tone but I hear a more focused tone come back to my ears which I really like.

10mFan Showtime Tenor Saxophone Mouthpiece

I found the tone of the Showtime to be in the middle of the bright and dark tone spectrum,  leaning a bit more to the bright side (especially with a softer reed).  The articulation was fast and clean and the intonation was very good. The response is immediate and it has plenty of volume and power when you push it.  The Showtime mouthpiece has more of a focus than Otto Links and other vintage mouthpieces which is nice these days when you are playing with electronic instruments as I have noticed that more focused mouthpieces seem to cut through the mix of a band easier in my experience.

The range of the horn seemed very even and smooth to me when playing fast which I always love.  The low notes are nice and fat and the high notes have a nice crisp brightness to them.

I think Mark Sepinuck at 10mFan did a great job with the Showtime tenor saxophone mouthpiece.  Mark is great with his descriptions of his mouthpieces and I feel like he has come out with another “gem” of a mouthpiece.  Well done! If you are interested in the Showtime tenor saxophone mouthpiece you can find out more information at 10mFan.com.    Mark is a great guy and he can answer any questions you might have about his mouthpieces.

If you try a 10mFan Showtime tenor sax mouthpiece,  I would love to hear what you think in the comments below.  Thanks,   Steve

10mFan Showtime Tenor Saxophone Mouthpiece-Rigotti Gold 2 1/2 Strong Reed-Reverb

10mFan Showtime Tenor Saxophone Mouthpiece-Rigotti Gold 2 1/2 Strong Reed-Reverb

10mFan Showtime Tenor Saxophone Mouthpiece-Rigotti Gold 3 Light Reed-Reverb

10mFan Showtime Tenor Saxophone Mouthpiece-Rigotti Gold 3 Light Reed-Dry

Also as an added addition to this review I feel compelled to post this video of Ben Wendel playing the Showtime tenor saxophone mouthpiece as well.   I love this clip!!

Ben Wendel play testing the 10mFan Showtime Tenor Sax Mouthpiece

Disclosure: I received the sample mouthpiece mentioned above for free in the hope that I would try it and perhaps review it on my blog. Regardless, I only review mouthpieces that I enjoy playing and believe will be good for other saxophone players to try also. Steve
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Steve About Steve

Steve Neff has been playing and teaching saxophone and jazz improvisation around the New England area for the last 25 years. He is the author of many effective jazz improvisation methods as well as founding the popular jazz video lesson site Neffmusic.com.

Comments

  1. Nice great highs and still a decent hint of dark lows

  2. Steve,
    As always, thank you for your incredibly in depth review. Great pictures, great personal insight and beautiful audios!
    I’m so glad you are enjoying this mouthpiece too! For all of you looking for holy grail hard rubber tenor mouthpieces, check out my website. You do not need to go to the vintage route anymore. There are better mouthpieces being made today! Come check out my website and have some fun listening to and reading about the mouthpieces.

    http://www.10mfan.com

    All the best, Mark

  3. Avatar Arya Boustani says

    Hi Steve, it has a great authority of tone due to a well defined mid-range. Low mid and high mid frequencies are there equally. But overall it is very contemporary. In my first pass of listening I felt it shines well with the softer reed. Darker / thicker reed probably match better with The Classic model. Please try the mouthpiece with other ligatures (softer reed and Silverstein, and harder reed with Selmer Two screws model. I think Silverstein mellows the brightness of the soft reed and add more lushness and Two Screws gives more character and definition to the mid-range that you won’t get with FL Ultimate (my personal experience).

  4. Very nice as always Steve, and I’m glad health issues have settled down for now…good to her you back on the sax. Definitely hear a difference between the two strengths, especially on the dry recordings.

    I recently got the same mouthpiece, same tip (7**) and played with Java Greens and V16’s. The characteristics of those two reeds is slightly different, the V16 is slightly thicker and and plays darker (same with a LaVoz) for me, and the Java (tip not as thick) played brighter. And with both of the reeds, altissimo pops right out; I also found the mouthpiece very responsive as you did. My tenor repertoire is currently jazz standards with a small combo in a masterclass so I’m using Vandoren V16’s or LaVoz’s. But I will use a Rigotti or Java if I play something more contemporary or a a horn section.

    I enjoy your reviews, you really pull the core tonal capabilities out of a mouthpiece.

  5. Its funny how so many players can get such different vibes from the same pieces. I love it! Steve gets that great R&B vibe, and here’s another side of The Showtime from my friend Doug Lawrence of the Basie Orchestra, showing its classic sound. Same exact tip opening!……enjoy and listen to the differences.
    Thats what well-made mpc’s can give you. They don’t stick you in a sound corner, they let you be you.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Snz0BObjBSc

  6. Avatar Larry Weintraub says

    Steve: Actually like it better w/the #3 light reed. It seems to have more core and body than w/the #2.5 hard reed.
    Speaking of reeds. Have you tried another Rigotti Reed called the Regal Queens reed. I have and I really like them. Using a #2.5 on my 60’s Vintage metal Otto Link 8*. No sub – strengths w/this reed. Also a traditional cut not a filed cut. You get 10 reeds in a card board fold over card for $37.99 before discount at the Woodwind/Brasswind. Give them a try and let us know what you think.

  7. Larry, Yes, I like the 3 Light reed also. I haven’t tried the Regal Queens yet. I do have some Rigotti Classic reeds that I am trying out. A bit darker than the Rigotti Gold and they blow a bit stiffer in my opinion. I also have some reeds from Germany called AW that are pretty good also. Darker than the Rigotti Golds. Steve

  8. Hey Steve,

    Great write up as always. How do you like the Showtime compared to the Robusto? I know you’ve said the latter is one of your favourites.

    Regards
    Malte

  9. Malte, I think this is a simple comparison. The Robusto is fatter in tone. The Showtime is more focused in tone. I think the tone of both are very similar although the Showtime seems slightly brighter to me but that might be simply because the Robusto is fatter sounding which takes some of the brightness off of the tone. Steve

  10. Avatar lweintraub1 says

    Btw – Queens reeds run harder than the Rigotti Gold. I cannot even play the Gold reeds, too soft. However the Queens work well on my metal FL Link.

    Larry W

  11. Larry, It’s funny you say that because David over in the Rigotti Gold Comparison comments just commented that the Queens are softer than the Rigotti reeds……..http://www.neffmusic.com/blog/2014/05/rigotti-gold-reed-strength-comparison/#comments

  12. Avatar lweintraub1 says

    Steve: Well like the commenter said there is old stock and new stock Rigotti Gold reeds out there. I am sure I played the new stock in the new boxes. The best way is for you to try the Queens and see what you think.

    Larry W

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