Hutchen / LJ Hutchen LJH-CL3
[20June2017: This reveiw has been superseded by the new hard rubber Hutchen clarinet. I think the model reviewed here is no longer sold by Hysonmusic.com. Please see the Hutchen clarinet review under the hard rubber section.]
My first review in 2011 of the Hutchen clarinet was made of hard rubber or ebonite. That clarinet--- reviewed here under Chinese Hard Rubber.
The new LJH-CL3 is better. This seems to be made of some kind of plastic— perhaps with some hard rubber in it. Whatever it is, it has tone quality that rivals my Ridenour.
This clarinet earns my *Phil's Favorite* award for cheaper Chinese clarinets. [14Aug2014 update] Please note that I sell this clarinet now. If you learned about it here, consider buying it here!
Bore LH joint top: 15.1mm
Bore LH joint at bottom: 14.9mm poly-cylindrical
Note: My test of another LJH-CL3 had a 14.9mm opening bore and the test results were not as good as this one.
I really like the mouthpiece! One can get great tone on this mouthpiece. It has more resistance that my favorite mouthpiece (perhaps more open), but this allows me to use a softer reed and still like my tone.
Intonation results taken when playing loud and not lipping. See how to interpret these results on the Model Comparison Page.
For the first, I pulled .8mm at the barrel and .6mm at the center tenon and used the included mouthpiece.
For the second test, I was pushed all the way in at barrel and center, using my own mouthpiece.
Intonation summary: This is professional level intonation. This clarinet can be played in tune. Note that I would want a shorter barrel because many ensembles play sharp. This barrel would not allow me to play sharp enough, so I would sound flat. I would be right on, and THEY would be sharp, but everyone would think I am flat.
Key work quality: Superb. Nice styling of trill keys, which have the top two on one post. Very thick and sturdy. It is ironic that we have insisted that Chinese players make sturdy products that can last long enough to be passed to a players son or daughter, however the cheap Chinese clarinets have made it so that clarinets (like computers and cell phones) have joined the list of throw-away-and-replace items.
This clarinet is most appropriate for: Anyone in a school program.
Condition issues noted: new. Fantastic right out of the box. All pads seating well.